Get hard on soft drinks
News that Ontarians are still dumping about a billion recyclable cans into landfill shows it's time for the province to stand up to the beverage industry and demand the revival of the deposit return system. Every other province except Manitoba has a version of this plan, with aluminum can recovery running at 80 to 90 per cent compared with the 40 to 60 per cent that make it into Ontario's blue boxes. Since the polluter pays, cash-strapped municipalities are covering the cost of disposing of cans that aren't recycled. Let's make the beverage industry cough up for processing their prodigious packaging.
He's so square
Now that the city has banned "youth events" in Albert Campbell Square, the public space adjacent to the Scarborough Civic Centre, will teen curfews be next? Thinking straight out of the 50s, Councillor Glenn De Baeremaeker wants to violate young people's civil rights, punishing everyone for past incidents. This goes against the mayor's goal of engaging youth, and no one would dare treat any other group this way. Maybe we should ban sports celebrations, too, though it's been a while since T.O. won anything.
Muslim leader must move on
Turns out ex-enfant terrible but mostly just terrible journalist Michael Coren is still around. Outrageous comments by Mohammed Elmasry, Canadian Islamic Congress president, on the has-been's Christian TV show have resurrected him. Elmasry said all Israelis over 18 are legitimate terrorism targets. Elmasry now needs to resign so the Palestinian position isn't reduced to anti-Semitism.
Ex-Star bigwig John Honderich never met a photo op he didn't like. Now Globe and Mail publisher Philip Crawley is skipping down this self-absorbed path, and cringing Globies fear being forced to run shots of the unphotogenic honcho posing with oversized cheques and embarrassed charity recipients. His latest me, me, me moment was an amateurish photo of the pub restlessly waiting to get his time card checked after a charity run up the CN Tower. A breathless city learned the climb was a personal best for the boss in one of only two local photos in that day's National Paper©.
Finally, fun at Authors Fest
It's not just the upbeat mood at the International Festival Of Authors that annouces notorious pain in the ass - and festival founder - Greg Gatenby has left the building. New director Geoffrey Taylor believes in "being nice," and at this week's energized launch party nobody worried that the new book boss was going to turn on them. Gatenby nemesis and long-banned poet Robert Priest took in the fun, dodging Lord Of The Rings props. Hell, even Glenn Murray, one of Canada's most successful authors, co-writer of Walter The Farting Dog, was there. He never would have made Gatenby's cut because of a no-kids-lit policy. IFOA now sports a children's program - what a gas.