Rainy Toronto

Morning Brew: Trinity-Spadina riding heating up, Toronto software-maker taking Microsoft to Supreme Court, supervised injection site proposed for Toronto, local butcher shop questioned about daily deal promotions, and Sun News Network premieres today

The election is heating up in the Trinity-Spadina riding. The area, which includes the Annex, Little Italy and Chinatown, has had its composition change over the years with the addition of more than 8,000 condos. According to some, this has the possibility to change the political landscape for the riding that has been held by NDP candidate Olivia Chow in recent years. Chow defeated Liberal candidate Christine Innes in 2008. Innes is running again and hopes the "condo factor" will play in her favour this time around.

In a David vs. Goliath showdown, the Toronto-based-software maker, i4i Inc., is headed to the U.S. Supreme Court to take on global giant, Microsoft. This is nearing the end of an almost four-year long legal battle that started when i4i Inc. sued Microsoft for patent infringement. Both companies will appear in a Washington court on Monday in a session that could change a fundamental tenet of patent law. If the court sides with "David", i4i stands to win about $300 million in damages.

A supervised injection site has helped decrease the number of drug overdoses in Vancouver and now public health experts are saying that Toronto could benefit from their own. Since Vancouver opened Insite, Canada's only supervised consumption facility, death from drug overdoses dropped by 35 per cent. In addition, the site helped get drugs off the street, saved the health-care system millions of dollars, and helped stopped the spread of infectious diseases, like HIV. The debate is already heating up in Toronto with Mayor Rob Ford saying on Friday that he doesn't approve of the idea. A report on whether Toronto would benefit from supervised consumption sites is expected in the summer.

Even if our waterfront doesn't turn out looking like America, our televisions are about to. That's because Sun News Network premieres today at 4:30 p.m. from coast to coast. If you want to know what to expect from the new network, its spokesman, Luc Lavoie, pretty much explains what you need to know: "The pace will be different from what people are used to seeing in Canada. It will be personality-driven, prime-time programming. It will be less politically correct and we will focus on what people are talking about around the water cooler or at the dinner table."

Chowhound and other Toronto internet forums have been lit up of late with discussion — and criticism — of a local butcher store's participation in multiple daily discount deals, the most recent of which offered $400 worth of organic meat for $99. Given the number and the extent of the discounts offered by the North Toronto-based store known simply as The Butchers, some have questioned whether or not the meat is actually organic, and others have speculated that owner Marlon Pather has concocted one big Ponzi scheme. For his part, Pather says that his strategy will work if coupon holders spend just over the daily deal amount.


Photo by DdotG in the blogTO Flickr pool.

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