Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The muck flies in Hogtown

Fueled by taxpayer funds, city official Geoff Rathbone has filed a libel suit against The Toronto Star. The paper and the city are are odds over the actual percent of solid waster diversion the city has attained as a result of implementing the green bin organics program.

The Star's article and associated links show numerous instances where city documents state or strongly imply that the green bins are diverting 30% of solid waste - i.e. that would otherwise be landfilled.

It seems clear to me that the 30% claim is a sham - and the actual figure is much lower. However, I can't see that The Star has impugned Rathbone. (Not to say that the article aren't the typical Toronto Star smear job/collection of half truths.)

This lawsuit is nothing more than a political move my David Miller. I'd really like to know how much pressure Rathbone was placed under to file this suit.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Why do we need The Toronto Star?

In the past week or so, I've concluded that The Toronto Star has outlived any residual use it might have had to society.

This 'newspaper' - which has always been left-leaning - has at least served to inform on local news and content. However, these days, not only do the so-called national papers often to beat The Star to the punch, they offer more in depth analysis.

For example, The National Post beat The Star in reporting on this:

by a whole day - published on August 20th.

The Star's article:

came out the following day.

Not only that, the Post's article is better written. The Post opened the story up for reader comments, while The Star (as is all too often the case) did not.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

The Best Burgers> - Biggie Burgers

I know that cottage-bound escapees from Hogtown often stop by Weber's haburger stand on a few miles North of Orillia. These are excellent hamburgers.

However, if you happen to drive through Newmarket along Mullock Drive (first Newmarket exit when heading North on 404 - and a good alternative to the 401 and 407 if you need to stop / shop for anything on your way up), there is a small mall with a Tim Hortons and a supermarket.

Tucked in the far corner is Biggie Burgers. This is purely a one-off. As far as I can tell, it is part of no chain. Whenever I've eaten there, the owner (I presume) is dutifully hamburgers and other fare - fresh. There are but three or four tables - and a bench for seating.

For a small establishment, the menu is quite extensive - so the non-burger consumers are not left hungry. On my last visit, one of the staff explained that they take all of the pictures of the food themselves.

Anyway, it's more than worth a stop - great food made with care, and clean and friendly.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Canadian Tire $$$ - Is it worth it?

I've been collecting Canadian Tire money since - well since I started shopping at Canadian Tire. This has never been a concerted effort. Now that I have a Canadian Tire store that's handy - yes one of those 'terrible' big box stores at Leslie and Lakeshore - I seem to have more of this 'currency' floating around.

Well, as of a few minutes ago, the bills are not longer floating around - they have been corralled in a big paper clip. I realise that I use a credit card for large purchases - which has reduced the amount of coupons I have collected. However, I still only have about $12 worth. This isn't worth the effort. I shall be using this paltry amount to replenish the bird feed supply. Henceforth, I'll use my credit card for all purchases.

The credit card keeps track of my loyalty on a computer somewhere - instead of requiring me to collect and sort pieces of paper. There is already plenty of paper in my abode.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Fire, Fire

Yes - another big, suspicious fire in a Toronto business. I wish this were not surprising. The trouble is - given Toronto's massive tax rates on commercial and industrial property - when a business gets in trouble, burning it down is the only way out.

Now, insurance fraud is illegal - and I'm not making accusations or condoning it. However, it does happen. A few years ago, a prominent establishment in the Beach burned down to nothing. This happened during the reconstruction of the streetcar tracks on Queen - making access by fire trucks difficult. Now that's suspicious.

Nothing has been done to build anew on the site either.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

A little rain - a lot of garbage

It was bright and sunny early this morning when I dragged a very full green bin out to the curb. Some of my neighbours had brought out their own bins the night before. This pleased the raccoon population - but did result in quite a mess.

It did occur to me that the system of bins - especially the green bin - did in a measure, help Torontonians endure the strike. If we hadn't been used to sorting garbage, the longer than usual storage of 'wet' waste would have been more of a problem. Storing paper and most other non-food waste garbage is not so much of an issue.

Now, I shan't in suggest that the 'brain' trust behind the monster bins intended these to help battle the unions. The Millers and Debaermakers of this world are so deep in the pockets of the unions that they have to use a lint brush instead of a shower to clean up each day. We'd all be better off if these dimwits took a walk in this afternoon's rain - and just kept going.