Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Toronto Pylon Service

Can someone explain why, whenever there is construction, or stop light maintenance, at least one police officer, if not two, are needed to hover around the workers, chat a little, wear the neon vest and do nothing police-like?

I see it all the time, all over the city. For over week in York Region, on Yonge just north of Steeles, every weekday morning there has been at least one, sometimes two YRP cruisers on the west side of the street, acting as pylons (although there are traffic cones available and being used) while a Bell Canada service van is parked and the worker goes about his business.

Seriously... we talk about police budgets... who pays for this? Is Bell paying for their worker to be 'protected' for now seven weekdays? The first day I saw them I thought the poor guy had been pulled over in his work van. Now |I see that these police officers have been assigned to sit in their car and.... what exactly? Insanity.

Then, just a few minutes ago at Neilson and Ellesmere, workers are adjusting the traffic lights and two cops in glowing vests are standing chatting. The lights are working. No one is directing traffic. They're all standing on a sidewalk where the electrical box is. Who's paying for their 'services'?

This is a regular occurrence on just about every road construction site. Surely there is a more cost-effective way to have done whatever 'job' the police in question are supposed to be doing. I'd have taken pictures, but in each instance I've been driving and I'm not inclined to whip out my cell phone.

I haven't been paying much attention to the mayoral race, perhaps this is an issue that has been or should be addressed.

canadianna

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Liberal Confusion re: Nomination Process

According to the Toronto Star and other publications, Justin Trudeau says people seeking a Liberal nomination will be subject to questioning regarding conscience issues, and if they aren't in line with party thinking, they will be excluded from running in 2015:
Trudeau says that while the Liberal party has always tried to appeal across a broad range of the political spectrum when it comes to economics, he does not believe it’s too much to ask MPs to embrace the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. It is, in fact, part of the screening process for new candidates.
“We check on a number of issues: how do you feel about the Charter of Rights and freedoms, how do you feel about same-sex marriage, how do you feel about pro-choice, where are you on that?” Trudeau said.
“And we make sure that the people who are stepping forward are consistent with the Liberal Party as it is now, as it stands under my leadership and under the feedback we’re getting from Canadians across the country.”
This morning I had a twitter conversation with Gerard Butts, a close policy advisor of Trudeau's, who seemed to be unaware of this fact. He stated on Twitter that it is not what a person believes that matters, it's how they will vote on the issue in Parliament.


Although Butts has been active on Twitter since I posed the question to him (twice) about whether potential nominees could declare themselves pro-choice and still be allowed to run for nomination or serve as an MP in the Liberal Party, *crickets*.

Butts' original Tweet tagged the National  Post:
The has also been told, repeatedly, that the policy applies to votes in Parliament, not personal belief, but has ignored that.
So it seems clear in his opinion, that under this new Liberal edict, that a person may follow their conscience (in their private lives) so long as they are aware they must vote along party lines if it ever comes to a vote. When asked directly if that was the case, he simply ignored the question. I guess he isn't as sure as he seemed to be.

Perhaps Gerard Butts believed the question had been asked and answered, but when his position is at odds with that of the Liberal leader, the Liberal position is about as clear as mud.

Regardless, I believe abortion is a conscience, not a rights issue and that people should not have to check their brains at the door of the House of Commons. Some people do that anyway.

Canadianna

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Friday, April 12, 2013

Blatant Self Promotion

My book is finally published on kindle and kobo. It's a fiction. It's got politics, betrayal, love, fast cars, hockey and LOADS of Canadiana . . .  If you're at all interested, here are the links:

Kobo Edition                                                                                                      Kindle Edition



Maybe now it's finished and published, I'll find more time to post . . . but I feel like I've got another book in me.

canadianna

Monday, February 04, 2013

So . . . I wrote a book

Help?

Anyone out there in Blogging Toryland with experience epublishing, specifically for Kindle? Since investigating Kindle, I've learned Kobo also does the epublishing thing, and there may be other ways to go ... unfortunately, the only copy of my book was uploaded to Kindle Direct Publishing shortly before my computer died and I have no idea how to pull it off the site to rework it for some other publishing format.

So.... if anyone has any tips to offer, that would be great. The book has been sitting there for a year, waiting to go, but in my typical fashion, I keep putting off clicking the *publish* button. Fear of failure? Dunno.

Thank you in advance.

canadianna

Friday, April 20, 2012

Please tax banks and corporations

he OFL is brilliantly yammering for *fair* taxation.

That's gonna fix all of our problems.

Seriously. It will make Ontario the utopia it ought to be.


No.... listen . . . The rich will pay more taxes and the poor will be spared. Surely the banks won't pass their higher taxes onto us via hefty hikes in service fees and user fees .... no way corporations would be possessed to raise prices to defray the cost of their new higher taxes .... and of course, the government will lower little people taxes and everyone love each other and world peace.

Yay!

canadianna

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Anyone hiring? Lol

For four years, I've worked at a crappy, physically demanding, minimum wage job with no room for advancement, no prospect for more responsibility or more money . . . so, in December I applied for another job. It's a union job, government actually, same kind of thing as what I've been doing, only part-time and overnights. Not exactly what I want to be doing forever, but as with all government jobs, it would mean pay hike after six months and then get first crack at the opportunity to post out to grander things.

The day of the interview I was required to fill out an application. It said that I must put the name and contact information of my direct supervisor or my application would not be considered, but there was a box you could check that said *don't contact my present employer*.

The interview and testing went well. I know this, because a week ago Thursday, my present supervisor told me that the HR department at this government department called her to ask her opinion of me and my work. Ooops. So much for the box I checked. Anyway, my boss was none-too-pleased . . . I know this because my job is a five day/week job. During slow periods, occasionally a person will be put *on-call* meaning they needn't come in. It goes in a rotation so that no one person loses too much pay. My partner and I were on-call in December so we wouldn't be due for another off day until May or June this year. I was put on-call the Monday following my supervisor being asked to provide a reference. My partner was not. There are still other people who've yet to have an on-call day, and yet I was told it wasn't punishment. Right.

The fellow from the the government later called me and said he was having difficulty getting a hold of my other references, could I supply the phone numbers again or perhaps new references. It took me until Tuesday to provide two more references. I left their names and numbers on his voice mail. So far, these new references haven't heard from the HR guy. Neither have I, so I'm supposing I took too long, wasn't a fit ... whatever.

So, I came home from work on Thursday and was ill. I won't go into details, suffice to say, I don't call in sick often or unnecessarily, but Friday, I felt compelled to. My company doesn't have *sick days*. We lose a substantial amount of money if we miss a day, more than just a day's pay . . . we lose our driving bonus for the whole week and another allowance that is dependent on perfect attendance. Needless to say, as the sole provider in a household of six, I don't take this sort of thing lightly. My job requires that I drive up to 140 km/day and provide services in people's homes. Some of my clients are elderly and/or in frail health. Beyond my own feeling horrible and questioning how safe it would be for me to drive, I believed it unfair to go into customers' homes and possibly infect them. I suppose my boss must've figured I was going on a job interview . . . because suddenly I've been put on call this coming Monday.

I write this just to point out to those who will ask why people stay under-employed, this is why . . . sometimes it's just easier to stay where you are because trying to climb out just knocks you down. Hoping for better has now put my crappy job in jeopardy and obviously it wasn't worth it.

canadianna

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Anyone else wonder . . .

. . . why they built all those crazy bike paths complete with traffic signals all through Toronto and presumably throughout surrounding areas?

When I first saw the paving begin in hydro fields in my area, I thought it was some stupid project started by the previous city council. Then . . . I noticed the signs *Action Plan* . . . which reads to me *government sponsored make-work project* and I realized it was the federal government . . . the supposedly CONSERVATIVE government of Canada.

I'm sure there must be some literature spelling out the great reasons for doing this . . . even if I could be bothered, I doubt there would be a good enough reason to have carved a multitude of adjoining bike paths which will likely be little-used and benefit no one.

Weird. I don't get it.

canadianna

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Warren Kinsella a closet conservative

It's true!

How else do you explain that the study he writes about that determined that whiny, insecure, narrow-minded, thin-skinned little kids grow up to be whiny, insecure, narrow-minded, thin-skinned, politically conservative adults. Kinsella MUST be a conservative -- he fits that description to a 'T'.

Warren manages to act all smug and self-righteous just like a true liberal . . . he even gets all giggly and tingly when he thinks he's done a *gotcha* just like liberals do. He's all bitter about his team's losses, picking at the scabs, looking for blame all over the place and all negative about any idea that doesn't emanate from his side in a way that would make any liberal proud. He mocks and ridicules those who are not in line with his world view, like any card carrying Liberal would.

Nope. It appears that study he cites must be skewed. Warren Kinsella is a liberal.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Get 'em while they're young

When did kids stop being kids, and become nothing but future workers?

A new study says all children should be *entitled to early education from the age of two.*

Entitled -- all children ARE entitled to early education from the age of two. All parents are ALLOWED to place their children in Montessori nursery schools, daycares that provide more than just diaper changes and snacks . . . the choice exists already . . . so, what then, is the study suggesting?

The study says that children would benefit because their graduation levels, future earnings and health would be better. And lucky mothers would be able to enter the workforce faster, which would benefit the economy. From the Canadian Press article (title link):
The study said more children are involved in early education than ever before.

However, it noted the split between oversight and delivery still requires too many parents to piece together arrangements to cover their work schedules.

"The results are stressful for children and parents alike, but also negate the wonderful payback that comes from delivering early education in a way that simultaneously supports children's learning and their parents' work," it said.

*Simultaneously supports children's learning and their parents' work.*

What about bonding? What about family life? What about just being a kid?

This study is worrying because it's just sinister enough to spark all the enlightened lefties out there who already think the state is a better parent than parents.

canadianna

Sunday, November 20, 2011

If they can't get it one way . .

The City of Toronto will get it another.

Has anyone else had this happen?

A relative received a NOTICE OF VIOLATION from the City of Toronto Municipal Licensing and Standards based on the Toronto Municipal Code, Chapter 548, Littering & Dumping of refuse.


Here is the response from my relative:

On April 18, 2011 we received a notice from the city saying that *the owner of land failed to clean and clear refuse that has been thrown, placed, dumped or deposited, including, but not limited to; All household waste, trash brush, boxes, furniture and any other item or thing that appears to have been discarded or abandoned.*

The letter said that if we did not comply, we would be charged $94 dollars per hour for the removal of the *waste* ... which, although we have no way of knowing for sure because of the non-specific nature of the letter, all we could assume it meant the tree limbs in our back yard which had been cut down in the fall, but which, because of the weather, had not been cut into smaller segments and taken to the curb. There was also an old freezer in our side yard. On the date of the letter it had been there just over a week and we were simply waiting for garbage day to put it out.

It took my daughter and son-in law about an hour to cut and bundle the branches and take them to the curb. The freezer went to the curb on our regular garbage day. This was all completed within the allotted time-frame of six days.

Then in June, inspector ___________ came to the door. She seemed to have no issues with the state of our home. She left without giving us notice of a fine or fee of any sort.

Now, here it is November, and on the 3rd we received an Inspection Fee Invoice of ...get this ... $94 + HST for a total of $106.22 for an inspection of our property by the city on June 6th.

I am a pensioner who asked a family member to help to rectify a situation that was going to cost me $94 if was not cleared up . . . and now you're charging me $94 + tax for a young woman in shorts and flip-flops to come to my door and have a five minute look around and find nothing wrong because I complied with the city's order.

Frankly, we don't even know for sure that anyone from the city came around in April to see the offending trees limbs in the first place. We believe our backyard neighbours, who put their house on the market in May, called the city to complain in order to ensure the view from their yard would be favourable for a sale --- You are not charging us for having inspected in April and no one from the city came to the door in April, and the *waste* in question was in a high wooden fenced yard behind the house. Because of this, we believe that that the city took the complaint at face value without an inspection. That would mean that if the complaint was an illegitimate nuisance complaint by a spiteful neighbour, we would have been charged for the June 6th compliance inspection anyway.

Either way, being charged in inspection fee in the exact same amount as the city would have charged to clear up the limbs and move the freezer, is excessive, unfair and absurd.

My son in-law telephoned your office on November 6, the day we received this notice. We were told that someone from the city would call us back about this matter the following day. To date, we have not received a call.

I am angry, frustrated and do not believe that this fee is justifiable, especially considering the so-called *inspection* took less time than it's taken to type this email and the inspector found that if there had been an issue, it was resolved. The city was unable to collect a fine, so now they are imposing a fee. This is wrong. How many people have you done this to? How many people have felt compelled to pay the inspection fee without question its validity?

I would appreciate an immediate response as I have waited in vain for two weeks for a reply to my son in-law's call. Your invoice indicates that if I fail to pay this in full by December 2, I will be charged 1.25 percent interest each thirty days and after 90 days, the amount will be transferred to my property tax bill and a further $50 will be added to the bill.

Does this practise by the city seem fair and reasonable? Just wondering.

canadianna

Negative 3rd party ads didn't buy an election

In today's Toronto Sun, John Snobelen writes:
But the Working Families ads go beyond the normal limits. The nasty (why are teacher unions, of all people, always so nasty?) ads we all endured during this election were not intended to make a point or raise a policy. They were designed to kneecap Hudak. The unions did the heavy lifting for the Liberals during the campaign.
I'll say it one more time. Hudak's campaign managers *kneecapped* Hudak.

Blame unions, 3rd party spending, blame all you want. Hudak deserved to lose that election because he never said what he would do differently or how he would do it. If people are going to vote for *change* they want to see plans, not platitudes. We didn't get that. We got vitriolic ads from the PC campaign, we got promises to keep some of the most contentious, expensive, stupid Liberal programs (all day kindergarten) and not much else.

I'd love to say the union ads pushed Hudak over the edge because I think their form of propoganda is wrong . . . but Hudak crashed and burned all on his own. If the ads had been effective at all, I think we'd have seen a Liberal majority.

So long as conservatives look outside their ranks for people and things to blame for this major disappointment, they will never find a positive way to move forward . . . the best defence is not always a good offence . . . sometimes, it's just having a plan and executing it. The PC Party had a plan, or so they said. They failed to execute. Their fault. Now . . . pick up what's left and move on.

canadianna

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Sanity prevails

When the verdict came down, I couldn't believe it--- Melissa Lewis carried a knife in her purse as she rode in the back seat of the car her victim was driving --- and she stabbed him to death.

The woman brought a knife in her purse. Who carries a knife in their purse? And who, while sitting in the back seat of a car, feels so threatened by the person driving, that they reach into their purse, grab the knife they just happened to bring along, and thrust the knife into the driver's neck?

How on earth could she have believed she was in imminent danger, even if her victim, the driver of the car, WAS reaching for a gun? How does a jury acquit that person of murder and say that the killing was *justifiable*.

If you feel that threatened by a person, maybe your shouldn't be in a car with them ... instead Melissa Lewis figured she'd just bring along a knife and get rid of the threat forever. If she'd been a man, I don't think she'd have been acquitted no matter HOW threatening the victim might have been in the past or seemed at the time.

Justice should be the same regardless of gender. Thankfully, the Crown is appealing.

canadianna

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The Gospel According to Warren

Warren Kinsella is now channelling Jesus. Funny, that.

Kinsella says :
But the Occupiers are the first truly populist, progressive movement to seize peoples’ imaginations in a long, long time. In this way — and I know this will anger some conservatives, but too bad — the Occupiers are a bit Christ-like.

*Christ-like*? Huh?

What is it? The ignorance? The arrogance? The haughty demeanour? The self-righteousness? The lack of direction and purpose? What is it exactly that Warren sees as *Christ-like*? Warren explains:

As noted most memorably in Matthew 25:31, when Judgment Day arrives, the ones who will be admitted into the Kingdom are the ones who have done the most for “the least” among us — the hungry, the sick, the poor.

They also serve, who only stand and chant? I don't buy it. What exactly have the occupiers done for the *least* among us? How are they serving their fellow man? By trying to affect change? What change? We live in Canada. Poverty, Toronto-style is not what you'd find in the 3rd world or in biblical times. The occupiers have no raison d'ĂȘtre . . . they are not trying to help others . . . they are not trying to shine a light on the plight of the underclasses . . . they are standing chanting for themselves, each saying *poor, pitiful me*.

Christ-like, my ass.

Warren goes on to say:

If you strive to know Him, like some of us do, there can’t be much doubt that the rabbi named Jesus Christ was no capitalist. Nor is there any mystery WWJD with the Occupiers, this past weekend.

He’d be right down there with them, chanting against the bankers and the politicians who do the bankers’ bidding.

I don't believe Jesus would stand with the bankers, but neither do I think he'd be standing along side the occupiers. You see, the bankers and the occupiers are the same kind people, one set rich, the other not so much - but both are selfish. Neither bankers nor occupiers see anyone but themselves as deserving. Both bankers and occupiers believe the world owes them a living and that the work of others should enrich their lives. They see each other as parasites and while both are right on that score, the poor parasites aren't somehow *better people* simply because they aren't wealthy.

Kinsella says:
God, said Christ, chooses the poor because they are “rich in faith.” They are the ones who deserve support.
Despite what the bible says, the poor are not *rich in faith* by default, neither are they good or deserving just because they are poor. Poverty, financial poverty is an earthly state. It doesn't elevate your soul, it doesn't make you saintly. The poor are in need of support by virtue of their circumstances. They are deserving of pity or charity because they are human . . . but this inane belief that all poor people are good and rich people are evil is silliness.

And to suggest that the occupiers hold some sort of high ground because they are *poor* is completely without merit. They are well-fed, unsheltered by choice, and fully clothed. Many of them are well educated in a system heavily subsidized by taxpayers, including those dreadful corporations.
If they were out there saying *I'll work . . . find me a job* maybe I could respect their cause . . . Instead, I see people saying *they're rich and I'm not . . . it isn't fair* which is not a cause -- it's a tantrum.

Ephesians 4:28 says:
Let him who steals steal no longer; but rather let him labour, performing with his own hands what is good, in order that he may have something to share with him who has need.
Read *steal* as *take* in that verse.

Maybe the occupiers should be looking for better ways to serve the poor. The rich will find their own rewards in heaven . . . Instead of shouting *look how bad I have it* -- maybe the occupiers could look outside themselves and find a way to produce and share and serve. I think that's what Jesus would do.

canadianna

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Undecided

Four days to the vote, and I remain undecided . . . not about which party to vote for, but rather, whether to vote at all.

The PC Party of Ontario had an opportunity here to live up to their *Changebook* and blow the stale and bloated Liberal government out of the water. Instead, I haven't even heard the word *Changebook* since maybe May or June? You pick up a few bits and pieces in the news over the weeks, like the fact that the PCs are prepared to maintain the status quo on many of the Liberal promises and screw ups. I'd have loved to hear something of the change that book might have planned . . . but I'm busy . . . I'm not interested in having to search out their agenda . . . this is election time . . . they should have told me. They haven't.

The Howarth ads are positive and engaging . . . appealing even to those of us have no inclination to vote for the NDP. There still hasn't been one positive, affirming PC ad. They're sticking with the anti-McGuinty ads . . . which are so off-putting that the Liberals don't seem to be bothering with ads at all anymore. Just watch the PC Party do the nasty, and the Liberals can sit back and know that the PC party operatives have failed in every possible way. They might have convinced many voters not to vote for Dalton, but they've done absolutely nothing to convince us to vote for them.

There are a number of things that might have lured me to the voting booth . . . cancelling all-day kindergarten, or if that's too radical, repealing the Health Care Premium. They could've told us their plan for newcomers to Ontario, rather than screaming about the ill-conceived Liberal one. What are their plans for post-secondary students? How do they intend to create jobs? What will they do about the Samsung deal?

The PC Party is hoping that we'd hate Dalton McGuinty and the Liberals enough to vote for them by default. That isn't the way it works. People might not like the status quo, but many are content to accept the devil they know . . . and those who'd rather vote for change will look for it somewhere positive, especially in these low economic times.

I see a pretty big increase for the NDP this Thursday. If voters are going to choose change because they hate the party in power, many might see Horwath as the only option available in the absence of anything positive from Hudak.

Sad really. This was his to win.

canadianna