Collusion, vandalism and violence—all for something as banal as snowplowing. If you think it seems too extreme, you don’t understand how public contracting in Montreal works, said the former employee of the major company. The same tactics are used throughout the city, even in the tiniest industries; it’s a culture, a way of life. “I have seen a guy get threatened when he bid on a grass-mowing contract in Ville St. Laurent. They don’t care. It’s just about maintaining control over those areas,” he explained. “The people that talk about corruption in the construction industry don’t realize it’s not just construction. It’s everywhere in public works.”
posted by vidur
on Apr 19, 2012 -
Timelapse Intersection Articulée à Montréal
In October, 2011, the Contemporary Museum of Monteral presented "Intersection Articulée", an interactive installation from Rafael Lozano-Hemmer. It was composed of 18 projectors of 10k watts each, visible from ~9 miles (15km) away. Here's some time lapse video results, with music.
posted by Goofyy
on Apr 6, 2012 -
"Canada exists for no natural reason.
... [This] is not to say that no significant differences exist between Canadians and Americans — just that our shared national border, unlike those of Europe, was not shaped by linguistic and ethnic variations. The War of 1812 made all the difference here. A complicated and unpleasant struggle, mostly forgotten, sundered our two countries. And that struggle is now 200 years old, which makes this as good a time as any to start remembering."
posted by Johnny Assay
on Feb 20, 2012 -
About 13 km (8 miles) north of the US/Canada border is Spotted Lake
(Google Maps/streetview), a endorheic basin
, or terminal lake. In wetter times, the lake is full, but spots are visible
. During the summer months, the water level drops, leaving spots of mineral-rich water
. The waters have long been considered therapeutic, and one story cites a truce in a battle to allow both warring tribes to tend to their wounded in the lake
. Though a sacred medicine lake of the Okanagan People
, the lake and the land around it were privately owned for 40 years
. Mineral-rich salts were harvested during World War I for munitions, and decades later, the land owners were looking to mine the mud to sell for use in therapeutic spas. In 2001, the land was finally purchased by the The Indian Affairs Department and the Okanagan Nation Alliance
. kłlil'xw is property of the Okanagan Nation
once more. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief
on Feb 15, 2012 -
Canada's attempts to alter its Copyright bills over the past 7 years have all failed,
often dying when an election is called. Attempts at implementing so called "Lawful Access" legislation have also previously died
in the House of Commons. Yesterday, Bill c-30,
"the Protecting Children from Internet Predators Act" was introduced by Vic Toews,
Minster of Public Safety, accompanied by one of the harbringer states of the "Four Horsemen of the Infopocolypse"
, "[one] can either stand with us or with the child pornographers."
The interent has a history of responding poorly to politicians trying to limit online freedoms and didn't respond to nicely to Vic Toews wanting to know more about your life. Meet @Vikileaks30
, a twitter account exposing portions of Vic Toews acrimonious divorce proceedings, adultery, and public accounts bills. [more inside]
posted by aidanwhiteley
on Feb 15, 2012 -
Through a Glass, Smartly
Larry Sherk is one of the world's foremost brewerianists, a collector of beer stuff who over 40 years has amassed the country's second-largest private collection of beer labels (about 3,000), many of which date to the late 1800s. [more inside]
posted by modernnomad
on Feb 4, 2012 -
is not my original last name. It was changed 300 years ago to Taxali
by a Maharaja in India. My ancestor invented a coin that was difficult to counterfeit and was subsequently knighted Taxali by the Maharaja. It means, "Maker or Steward of The Mint". How serendipitous!! Here I am, 300 years later, honouring my ancestor's achievements and mine and my sister's family name.
posted by unliteral
on Jan 23, 2012 -
In July 2011, Uganda's Little League baseball
team became the first African team to qualify
for the Little League World Series
, which was held in Williamsport, Pa., in August 2011. After beating the the 22-time World League qualifying Arabian American Little League squad from Dhahran, Saudi Arabia
, the Ugandan team couldn't take part in the world series after their visas were denied
(NYT; alt: HuffPo
), due to concerns about birth certificate validity
, but that's not the end of their story. The Canadian team from Langley raised funds to travel to Uganda
, giving the Ugandan team the match they were denied
. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief
on Jan 20, 2012 -
In an editorial (PDF)
in the Canadian Medical Association Journal this week, interim Editor-in-Chief Rajendra Kale suggests that the sex of a fetus, determined by ultrasound, should not be revealed until after 30 weeks of pregnancy to prevent the selective abortion of females, common in other countries and taking place in some immigrant communities in Canada. [more inside]
posted by 2bucksplus
on Jan 18, 2012 -
Ottawa does about face on same-sex marriage for non-Canadians. The Harper government has served notice that thousands of same-sex couples who flocked to Canada from abroad since 2004 to get married are not legally wed. The reversal of federal policy is revealed in a document filed in a Toronto test case launched recently by a lesbian couple seeking a divorce.... The government’s hard line has cast sudden doubt on the rights and legal status of couples who wed in Canada after a series of court decisions opened the floodgates to same-sex marriage. The mechanics of determining issues such as tax status, employment benefits and immigration have been thrown into legal limbo. [The lesbian couple's] divorce application will be considered next month by an Ontario Superior Court judge. They are asking the judge to either craft an exemption allowing them to divorce or to strike down any legislative provision that has the effect of preventing them from doing so. [more inside]
posted by maudlin
on Jan 12, 2012 -
"In 1999, Toronto-based photographer Jeff Harris
began taking a photo of himself each day as an alternative to all those diaries he started but couldn't keep up. But what began as a self-portrait project has evolved considerably in its 13 years. Harris' photographs aren't the typical, self-portrait vanity projects that crop up on YouTube now and again. Instead, he used the project to inspire him in his daily life, to go out and do something that would get him off his couch....This story becomes even more incredible as it progresses, but it's difficult to explain without cheapening it."*
So watch it now
[video || 05:26].
posted by ericb
on Jan 6, 2012 -
Garth Turner, former Member of Parliament and current entertaining, curmudgeonly, and well-informed Greater Fool blogger about Canadian real estate -- and the world economy generally -- gives his predictions for 2012
. The main one, IMO, is the one that he talks about relentlessly in his postings: "Most people won't get it."
posted by anothermug
on Jan 1, 2012 -
The history of Toronto in photos
is 90 some odd posts linked to provide a thematically organized visual overview. The vast majority of the photographs featured derive from the Toronto Archives. Should you be interested in a less visually oriented take on Toronto history, there is also the Nostalgia Tripping series
, which was designed to be a bit more about storytelling than just the photos.
posted by netbros
on Dec 5, 2011 -
This year the CBC Massey Lectures celebrates fifty years with bestselling author, essayist, cultural observer, and famed New Yorker contributor Adam Gopnik.
His subject is winter - the season, the space, the cycle
. Gopnik takes us on an intimate tour of the artists, poets, composers, writers, explorers, scientists, and thinkers, who helped shape a new and modern idea of winter.
Listen to Winter: Five Windows on the Season Streaming files for this years lecture will be available until Friday, November 18. [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation
on Nov 14, 2011 -
Vancouver aims to "end homelessness by 2015".
Officials have been working over the years to reduce the city’s homelessness, and in July passed an ambitious plan that targets eliminating street homelessness by 2015 and creating nearly 40,000 new units of social, rental, and condo housing by 2021.
The plan is aimed at building multiple types of housing to address shortages, but the first three years focus mainly on supportive and social housing. It calls for 3,650 units of such housing, 1,700 of which are already funded and in either the planning or construction phase. According to city councilor Kerry Jang, the need for this type of supportive housing has skyrocketed in recent years.
posted by modernnomad
on Oct 24, 2011 -
The government of Canada has decided to end
the Canadian Wheat Board
's single desk system for the sale and export of wheat and barley. This has been on the Conservative agenda
for some time
now, despite some claims that farmers support
the Wheat Board. Many are suggesting that the repercussions could stretch beyond wheat farmers; including concern for the town of Churchill, known mostly for the local bear
population, which does 95%
of their port business through the Wheat Board.
of the Wheat Board.
week on metafiler?
posted by Stagger Lee
on Oct 17, 2011 -