Prog Blog’s Flickr Photostream

Illuminated By Street Lamps: Ontario: A leading jurisdiction for intense, coercive neoliberalism

By Joe Fantauzzi@jjfantauzzi Global capitalism has liberalized incrementally since the end of the Second World War. As the Keynesian welfare state fell out of favour in the late 1970s amid a stagnating economy and rising government spending, a new business-friendly approach dubbed neoliberalism (literally, “new liberalism”), emerged and ushered in an epoch of devotion to market principles as the solution to what ails Ontario both economically and socially. The implementation of the Canada-US Trade Agreement in 1987[1], North American Free Trade Agreement in 1994[2]and the creation of the World Trade Organization in 1995[3] were (Read more…)

Melissa Fong: Electronic music, raves & Toronto’s moral panic on drugs

…they do the work because they want to re-produce the type of city they want to live- the type of city that is worth living in. … …not all entertainment is built the same- some of these very worth while performers and promotors can’t jump through your hoops, or will grow tired doing so. These local, smaller-name talent will seek other places with fewer restrictions- and those other cities, their citizens and tourism will benefit from it. You have local artists just trying to build a city they want to live it- why are you squashing their efforts? One of the (Read more…)

Things Are Good: Toronto: Bring Back the War on Cars

This year Toronto is witnessing a mayoral race between the worst mayor the city has ever seen and a few people who want his job. Not one candidate has come out to support bicycle based transportation (instead they debate how to better get cars through the city and not people). This isn’t a good thing. Last year in Toronto roughly 40 people were killed by car drivers, more than murdered by non-car homicides.

Local online press, Torontoist, has reacted to this by calling for people in the city to bring back “the war on the car”. People in Toronto ought (Read more…)

The Progressive Economics Forum: 10 Things to Know About the At Home/Chez Soi Study

On Tuesday, April 8, results of the Mental Health Commission of Canada‘s At Home/Chez Soi homelessness study will be released at an Ottawa press conference. The study followed more than 2,000 participants in five Canadian cities. All were homeless when the study began. Half of them received the Housing First intervention, and half of them did not. Data was collected from 2009 until 2013.

Here are 10 things you should know about this study.

1. It is one of the most ambitious randomized controlled trials in Canadian history.

2. Its $110 million budget was funded entirely by (Read more…)

The Progressive Economics Forum: Rising Homelessness

In 2010, I wrote a blog post in which I suggested that: a) the recession of 2008-2009 would bring on increased homelessness; and b) there would be a lag effect of roughly three to five years. Indeed, I suggested that it would not be until 2014 until the full effect of the recession is seen in terms of homeless numbers.

Recent data from the City of Toronto appears to lend support to my prediction.


Illuminated By Street Lamps: The Toronto G20 Summit: A State of Exception

By Joe Fantauzzi@jjfantauzziBetween June 26 and 27, 2010, thousands of demonstrators[1] descended on Toronto, Ontario to protest while the leaders of the world’s 20 largest economies[2] met behind a protective fence built of steel and secretive legislative authority. When the tear gas cleared and the G20 Summit ended, 1,105 people had been detained. It has been described as “the largest peacetime mass arrest in Canadian history.”[3] Of those arrested, 779 — 80% — were released without any charges (as of June 2012).[4] Following Giorgio Agamben, I contend that the Province of Ontario employed (Read more…)

Illuminated By Street Lamps: Locating Canada’s State Multiculturalism As A Racist Doctrine

By Joe Fantauzzi@jjfantauzziCanada is a multicultural nation. More than four decades of policy, legislation and celebration have engraved this country’s pluralism into its national character. The ethnic diversity of this country is presented globally as a fundamental strength of the Canadian nation. But massive structural inequalities which have not been erased with state multiculturalism policies remain ─ and have, in some cases, been exacerbated. I contend that nationalism in Canada is highly predicated on race and a structural racism that is intrinsically linked to Canada’s brand of state-sponsored multiculturalism. Following Himani Bannerji, I argue this race-focused nationalism works (Read more…)

Things Are Good: TradeCity: A Game That Shows You Your Own City

TradeCity: Toronto is a new expeirmental art game made by Golboo Amani that begins April 1st (no fooling’) and runs to the 12th. The game is set in Toronto and you need to physically traverse the city to play the game. TradeCity will expose players to really cool organizations in the city that they may have previously been unaware of.

I’ve had the chance to help Golboo on this project as an advisor so it’s really exciting to see the game about to start. You should sign up soon as space is limited and it looks like it’s going to (Read more…)

Trashy's World: As O-Town doesn’t really have a Mayoral race to speak of…

… this political junkie has to find another one to follow and enjoy. And Toronto, the land of the crack-smoking, loud, obnoxious, and the tacky champion of all Torontonians with a sub 75 IQ, is the place to watch. Especially now that Olivia Chow is resigning her seat in the House to run against that […]

Autonomy For All: Toronto Needs Progressive Property Taxation

In November, the TTC board decided to raise fares for 2014 by approximately $60/year for people who buy metropasses every month.  Many have already noted that this amount is the same as the $60 VRT that Mayor Ford and Council repealed early in this term.  Quite plausibly, this is a regressive tax transfer from a form of taxation that falls more heavily on wealthier residents (e.g. those with cars) to one that falls more heavily on poorer residents (those reliant on the TTC).   As the TTC is already one of the least subsidized and most expensive (Read more…)

Autonomy For All: Yes, Rob Ford is Currently Losing

There’s still some confusion about this.  Ford is the incumbent. He has as close to 100% name recognition and voter awareness as any politician can possibly attain.  Short of people who have particular mental illnesses or who purposely avoid all news, it’s difficult to imagine any potential voters in the city who aren’t aware of Ford and have some opinion on him.

The challengers are just that:  Challengers.  Unknown, untried.  That at least two of them (I’m assuming Chow will challenge) can already beat Ford in match ups even with multiple other vote-splitting candidates left in, (Read more…)

Art Threat: Pinko cyclists rejoice: Rob Ford film on the way

It was inevitable: a Rob Ford movie is coming soon to a theatre near you.

Just one week after the book release of Crazy Town: The Rob Ford Story, by Toronto Star journalist Robyn Doolittle, Canadian production company Blue Ice Pictures have snapped up the film and television rights to the story.

“If you tried to make this story up, people would think it was over the top,” Doolittle said in a statement. “The Rob Ford investigation is something I’ve been working on for more than two years. It’s something I’m obviously very invested in. It’s so much more (Read more…)

The Progressive Right: How John Tory Lost Me … Again ( #topoli )

The first time was when he suggested evolution was still “just” one of many theories that should be taught in schools. Voters soundly defeated him for such backward thinking.

Now, he has raised the ire of some by suggesting that the pay equity gap in Canada can be solved by women being more aggressive when asking for raises or, as he put it, “learn how to play golf“. John referred to studies and personal anecdotes.

Having engaged in a number of debates on this topic, defenders of John Tory took to explaining how the business world works – (Read more…)

The Progressive Right: Why Toronto’s Politics Matter ( #topoli )

The never ending saga of Rob Ford is important to not just Toronto.

Toronto is the 4th largest city in North America and the 6th largest government in Canada. Businesses and governments determining whether or not to interact or do business in Canada are reading news and headlines about the mayor or Toronto. The city is making international headlines and not because of anything good or worthwhile.

Right now, the mayor of Toronto is a punchline. Right now, the mayor of Toronto is a habitual liar. Right now, the mayor of Toronto commands unwarranted reverence from provincial and federal politicians.

(Read more…)

The Canadian Progressive: Toronto Mayor Rob Ford offers glimpse into Canada’s broken democracy

The latest chapter in the ongoing shameful political drama starring Toronto Mayor Rob Ford offers a glimpse into Canada’s broken democracy.

The post Toronto Mayor Rob Ford offers glimpse into Canada’s broken democracy appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Left Over: Oh, RoFo, Oh Harpo…….(with apologies to John Lennon)

New Rob Ford video leaves council members frustrated, stunned Toronto mayor should step down for the good of the city, Coun. Michael Thompson says

CBC News Posted: Jan 22, 2014 9:28 AM ET Last Updated: Jan 22, 2014 5:33 PM ET

Personally? LMAO, sorry, but this latest RoFo Rant knocked Harpster off the front page of Canada’s fawning press…in all it’s dreariness…they can’t seem to help themselves, pushing each other aside, like papparazzi after a B grade starlet, trying to be the ones with the longest, most boring coverage of Great Leader droning on and on in Israel, where the media (Read more…)

Things Are Good: Focus on Sustainability Film Festival

York University in Toronto will be hosting their third annual film festival all about sustainability. This year they are running films about oil. If you’re in Toronto next weekend or nearby you should check out what’s playing and take the bus to the festival.

Planet in Focus with York University Present: Focus on Sustainability Film Festival – the annual event with this years theme on oil! This entertaining and educating experience features domestic and foreign documentaries, a panel discussion with filmmakers and academics, an interactive film display, prizes, sustainably sourced food and beverages, and an e-waste disposal program. Please join (Read more…)

Montreal Simon: Rob Ford’s Deeply Disturbing Gangsta Fantasy Problem

I have to admit I have been doing my best to ignore Rob Ford. I find keeping up with the criminal activities of Boss Harper and his Con gang hard enough.And I fear too much exposure to that monstrous dumb as a spoon Con buffoon might drive me over the edge eh?But how can you ignore this state of denial or delusion?Mayor Rob Ford called the events of Monday night a “minor setback” and offered no apology in a Wednesday evening press conference.Or the damage he is doing.Read more »

The Disaffected Lib: You’ll Pay For Climate Change One Way or The Other.

One thing climate change will probably bring you is higher insurance premiums. Last year Canadian insurers forked over $3.2-billion in payouts, a record.  For the first time, flooding-related claims exceeded fire losses.

Calgary flooding losses hit $1.7-billion.  Toronto’s flooding set an Ontario record of $940-million.

Insurance companies aren’t in the business of paying out more than they’re collecting in premiums so watch for rates to increase.

Melissa Fong: Psst: Bitcoin ATM expanding to Toronto

Yep, more reason why Bitcoins are here to stay Bitcoin ATM was a hit in Vancouver and now Toronto gets one. Located at King and Spadina, Bitcoin Decentral will function […]

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Future Proof: Ice Storms

Last year Shane vlogged about ice storms. Let’s not wait until a big storm hits Saskatchewan before we future proof our homes being built today.

You can check out Shane’s website, and buy his book.

If I had $20,000 to spend on a “depreciating liability” (a car), or $20,000 to spend on renewable energy for my home, which would be more useful during an ice storm or other time of emergency? Arguably a car could be useful to remove myself from the place of emergency, but if there’s no enough gas, or electricity to pump the gas, (Read more…)

CuriosityCat: Deperately seeking Toronto’s Nenshi

Purple reign

Is it time for Canada’s largest city to have its very own purple rain? The Editorial Board of the Globe & Mail seem to think so. They frame the issue this way: Toronto needs to be rethought from its suburbs inward, not from its centre outwards. And its politics have to move beyond tired, left vs. right clichés. Mayor Rob Ford has been less than successful in competently running the city, reducing its council meetings to high farce, worthy of earlier British comedy skits more than of the governing board of a major city. The G&M is scathing (Read more…) . . . → Read More: CuriosityCat: Deperately seeking Toronto’s Nenshi

Montreal Simon: Rob Ford and the Big Ice Storm Power Grab

As Toronto woke up to a scene of devastation with more than a quarter of a million people without power, one man was missing in action.And you can guess who that was eh?The Mayor in Name Only. As city officials, staff and cleanup crews worked to repair the havoc caused by an icy storm, Mayor Rob Ford was unreachable, according to a source. The mayor could not be found all Sunday morning by city staff working to organize warming centres and other emergency preparations, the source said. Read more »

Illuminated By Street Lamps: No Federal Childcare Program: An Exercise In Strengthening Hegemony

            Canada, a nation among the wealthiest in the world, cannot meet its daycare needs. The problem has grown to crisis proportions in the country’s largest cities. In Toronto there are only enough daycare spaces for about one in five of the city’s children.[1] In downtown Vancouver, 2,000 children are on a childcare waiting list.[2] There is no federal universal childcare scheme in Canada. Some provinces and municipalities offer subsidized childcare but these programs are at constant risk of having funding withdrawn. As well, the lack of federal standardization results in wide disparities of (Read more…)

The Liberal Scarf: Focused on the economy? Finance Minister Flaherty and "Minister of Jobs" Kenney nearly "come to blows" over Toronto politics

CBC reporting, and Conservative MP’s and Kenney himself confirming.

“In a voice loud enough for several of their cabinet colleagues to hear, Flaherty told Kenney to “shut the f–k up” about Ford. Kenney responded angrily in kind, and although the two men were separated by four other ministers, alarmed caucus colleagues, who requested anonymity, were concerned the bilious debate might escalate beyond their control. “I thought they might come to blows,” said one MP who was not authorized to speak publicly about the incident. Another MP said there was shock at the sight of two senior ministers battling in such (Read more…) . . . → Read More: The Liberal Scarf: Focused on the economy? Finance Minister Flaherty and "Minister of Jobs" Kenney nearly "come to blows" over Toronto politics