Let's cut daycare while we're at it
"If we made a few strategic decisions to defer some items, such as the bike paths and the car-free days, we could find the money."
City Councillor Karen Stintz daydreams about how to find $1 million for Asian tsunami relief in Toronto's surplus-free budget.
Anemic Asian aid
Prime Millionaire Paul Martin is leading with his ass again as Canada slowly joins South Asian tsunami aid efforts. Our callous PM has been shamed into stepping up (and holding opportunistic photo ops as proof) by insistent citizens who put their own money on the line. At least we're doing better than the U.S., where Dubya's crocodile tears accompany significantly less cash per capita. The Leader of the Free World© is anteing up about as much as he spends on killing Iraqis in one week.
First Night blight
Ya think there might be a problem having a booze-free New Year's Eve at something called the Distillery District, which is loaded with bars? A "family-friendly" celebration, the sparsely attended First Night has been petering out, jumping locations for years. Torontonians are mature enough to spend New Year's with their kids and have a drink. Tickets range from $13 to $15, over $60 bucks for a family of four, not including suds, on a night when everyone wants a bevy. Time to rethink a hopeless event that sucks up government and sponsor cash. There's an idea here, but this ain't it.
Scarborough's real problem
Here's an argument for shorter municipal council terms: Scarborough-Agincourt's Michael Del Grande. This Keystone Kop of a councillor has already humiliated himself hunting for grow ops in his ward - isn't half of Toronto's police force already doing that? Now he's back complaining about ethnic issues. Del Grande made the city cringe campaigning against Guyana-born incumbent Sherene Shaw, saying "15 years of foreign representation" was too much. Amazingly, he got elected and now moans that Scarborough is suffering because "a lot of white people are moving out." How about Del Grande moving out - of City Hall, now.
American TV producers are considering a new reality show, similar to The Apprentice, starring Canada's most successful ex-Austrian, Frank Stronach. But unless the car parts king has a secret Osmond-sized clan on the side, the show will be a one-off, since his top staff spots are only open to family members and ex-pol pals. But maybe wee Belinda is getting bored staring at the Parliamentary ceiling from the Opposition benches and will help boost her dad's TV-friendly quotient.