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Mike Russell
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Well it's about time this area got something in the way of an international sporting event even if it is only the Pan Ams. To be truthful, I will probably not attend one event. Nothing in these games appeals to me. It's at best second rate and not something I can get too excited about. However, I am happy to see that there will be a huge influx of federal and provincial funds to build badly needed sporting facilities here in Hamilton and the rest of Southern Ontario. We will finally get the much needed new stadium here in Hamilton along with swimming and cycling facilities that will put us on the international radar when it comes to sport. These facilities will also be a lasting legacy for the generations to follow just as Ivor Wynne and Jimmy Thompson pool have been for past generations.
Toggle Commented Nov 7, 2009 on Toronto/Hamilton wins the games at Spec Online
I read through all the comments here and think to myself how foolish some people are. This virus can kill you. It is worse in the young, particularily young women. Anyone who refuses the vaccine is putting themselves as well as those around them at risk. I intend to get the vaccine as soon as I am able, not only to protect myself, but also to protect those closest to me. As I see it the risks of getting the H1N1 flu far outweigh the risk of getting the shot. Stop over analyzing the data and use your brain. Get the shot.
Toggle Commented Oct 26, 2009 on H1N1 shots coming up at Spec Online
Here's an idea, lets just get back to the basics in education. Teach kids the basic skills they need to get along in life. When I was in school, 30 years ago the dropout rate was 30%. Exactly what it is today. There has been no change. The reality is not everyone can or will complete their education. Some of the most successful people I know were dropouts. We cannot assume that everyone who has not completed the basic education is a failure. Some people just don't need it or want it. Providing, special schools, whether they be gender based or race based does nothing to further ones education. If anything it takes away the opportunity to teach children about real life. Life outside of school is not segregated.
Toggle Commented Oct 25, 2009 on A school for boys only at Spec Online
It's one thing for the government to pass laws about when and where people can smoke it public spaces. But to try and control what people can do in their own homes is just ridiculous. It's getting to the point of harrasment, pure and simple. If the government doesn't want people to smoke then just ban the product. But we all know that will never happen because they themselves are addicted to the tax revenues generated by the sale of the product.
Toggle Commented Oct 19, 2009 on Ban smoking in apartments and condos? at Spec Online
As much as I like Obama and think that given time he will be a good leader, I just don't see how he could be awarded the Nobel Peace prize at this time. He is the commander in chief of the US military. A military that is currently at war in not one but two different countries. What were these people thinking in giving him the award. It has diminished the contributions made by all others who came before him. The Nobel Peace Prize has lost some of it's lustre as a result.
Toggle Commented Oct 10, 2009 on Obama's big honour at Spec Online
It's quite obvious that the NHL wants nothing to do with the city of Hamilton and I can't blame them. This city is a dump, the welfare capital of Canada. The decisions made by the NHL have nothing to do with Jim Balsillie and his supposed lack of integrity. It doesn't matter who it is, they will not put a team here, the city just doesn't fit the image the NHL is trying to project. They say that another team in Southern Ontario would be a gold mine, but that pot of gold does not include Hamilton. If the NHL were to put another team in the area it will be anywhere but Hamilton and the team will have Toronto in it's name. I appreciate the effort that Jim Balsillie has made, but the result was determined long ago when the NHL decided that Hamilton is just not an NHL calibre city.
Toggle Commented Oct 1, 2009 on NHL dreams dashed, or not? at Spec Online
I have no problem with the government suing the companies, but if they win I want the government to return all the taxes I have paid on cigarettes over the last 35 years. It would only be fair since the taxes I and other smokers pay far exceeds the cost of healthcare for us. This is a classic example of double dipping or double taxation if you like. The government regulates and taxes these products. If they are so concerned with the health risks involved they should just ban the product altogether. The problem is they themselves are addicted to the revenues generated by the ridiculous taxes imposed on smokers. The other problem is and this will affect even non smokers, is if all smokers quit, where is that tax revenue going to come from. Guess what non smokers, you are the ones who are going to end up paying more taxes. Someone has to pay, and it won't be just smokers. If this does end up going to court, and they are found guilty, I would like to see the judge deduct the amount of taxes paid over the last 50 years from the 50 billion. The government would end up owing the cigarette companies and smokers money.
Toggle Commented Sep 30, 2009 on Suing Big Tobacco at Spec Online
This is just another case of overpaid whiney public sector employees not knowing how good they really have it. They are lucky to have the right to file grievances, most people in the real world don't have that option. I know with many employers I have worked with in the past, their answer to most grievances is there's the door if you don't like it here. The number of outstanding grievances is not neccessarily an indication of a bad employer, but rather an indication of the sense of entitlement shared by the people who work there. I would be interested to know the nature of those grievances. How many of them are frivolous complaints based on people just not wanting to do their jobs. I have always been a pro labour advocate and have seen many abuses by employers over the years. But I can't help but think that public sector employees need a wake up call. Maybe it's time for a reality check. They just don't realize how good they really have it.
Toggle Commented Sep 23, 2009 on Censuring Hamilton Health Sciences at Spec Online
Perfect, now the city should say pay up or we will seize the building for tax arrears. The city could then put it on the market and sell it to a developer with vision and more importantly money to redevelope the site.
Toggle Commented Sep 16, 2009 on Back taxes and The Connaught at Spec Online
Just another stupid idea, being supported by the city's staff. This is prime downtown real estate that is going to be converted to what basically is geared to income housing. We do not need more low income housing in the core. It is the wrong demographic if we want to see the downtown prosper. We do not need a high profile commercial property on the main thoroughfare of this city being turned into a residential complex. Besides all the negative connotations that come with a building catering to low income types, does the city really want to plop a bunch of whiney senior citizens into a busy commercial area. Is the city going to have to force the local bars an restaurants to close down at 11 pm so the noise generated by these types of activities doesn't disturb the neighbors. Residential properties should be in residential areas, not in the heart of the commercial area of this city. This is just another short sighted decision by an inept city staff. Lets get some new staff working for this city. We need people with vision if we are going to move this city forward.
Toggle Commented Sep 12, 2009 on The Connaught conundrum at Spec Online
Ricko The reason I blame Harper is because of his refusal to work with the opposition. It has been stated numerous times by the opposition that they are willing to work with the government. The problem lies with Harper because he is unwilling to compromise to get things done. This is a minority government, if they want to stay the government they have to be willing to deal with the opposition. Unfortunately, Harper is just too ridged in his ideology to do so. As for the Conservatives being further to the left than any other Conservative government, please. It's the other way around they are further to the right than ever before. When true Progressive Conservatives, true centerist like Joe Clark and even Brian Mulroney want nothing to do with them you have to know they have drifted too far right.
Toggle Commented Sep 6, 2009 on Election coming, like it or not? at Spec Online
Do we want an election, no. Do we need an election, yes. The problem we have right now is that we have a minority government. We have a party in power that is trying to govern as a majority instead of working with the opposition to make things work. The blame clearly lies with Stephen Harper. He is the PM, it is his responsibility to make things work. He needs to get the pickle out of his butt and learn to compromise. He cannot rule as a majority leader when he doesn't have a majority. As of right now if the polls are any indication a new election would result in much the same result as the last election. It is a statistical dead heat. If anything the Liberals may gain a few seats because of rising support in Quebec and the Maritimes. If we have an election and Harper fails to get his majority it will be 3 strikes for him. He will be finished as leader of the Conservatives.
Toggle Commented Sep 4, 2009 on Election coming, like it or not? at Spec Online
This is not the problem of one particular government or another it is a systemic problem in the public service. There is a sense of entitlement among public servants that doesn't exist in the private sector. That is what needs to be addressed. I think by nipping this in the bud the present government is setting a tone that this type of thing is no longer going to be tolerated. As I stated, I don't believe that any one government can be blamed, it doesn't matter who is in power this sort of thing happens. The problem is the government of the day looks at big picture issues and leaves the small stuff to the bureaucrats thinking that these people are professionals and know what is or is not acceptable. Obviously, that is not the case. There is going to have to be more oversight by the politicians to ensure that these abuses stop.
Toggle Commented Sep 1, 2009 on Cleaning house at Ontario agencies at Spec Online
I don't think giving a few dollars to the homeowners is going to solve the problem. The money should be spent fixing any problems that the city is responsible for. Besides that it sets a bad precident for any future problems that may or may not be the fault of the city. With the recent report that last weekends storm dropped almost as much rain as the July storm I would think that in both cases these were exceptional circumstances. The city cannot possibly be responsible for all scenarios. They plan and build for above normal capacity, it would be cost prohibitive to plan for exceptions to the rule. The home owners also have to take some responsibility, have they installed sewer backup valves, if not why not. Those valves are located on their property and are their responsibility not the cities. Maybe the city should require homeowners in flood prone areas to install them.
Toggle Commented Sep 1, 2009 on More aid for flood victims? at Spec Online
File sharing in Canada is legal. Some people obviously don't realize that. The federal government tried to change the law last year but the bill died when the election was called. As for what they are proposing in Great Britain I think it's a little over the top. Why is the government even getting involved. If it is made an offense it should be a civil matter not a criminal one. The government has better things to do other than pursuing people sharing music and movies. If you have ever borrowed or lent a CD or DVD then you are guilty of file sharing. If the music and movie industries have their way you could be prosecuted for the act of lending or borrowing something they have produced. In this country we already pay a special tax on recordable media that is forwarded to the industry. Now they want more, enough is enough.
Toggle Commented Aug 26, 2009 on The latest on battling web piracy at Spec Online
Is this really neccessary. It's not as if we have that many problems in this city that we need a mounted police unit. It would be great from a public relations point of view. But is the expense really worth it. They are currently installing camera's to monitor Hess village do they really need horses to patrol the area as well. The village is only busy during the summer months, what are they going to do with the units the rest of the year. I see this as just another expense to add to the already overbloated police budget. Hopefully, the idea will be shelved, for the sake of taxpayers.
Toggle Commented Aug 24, 2009 on Mounted police in Hess Village? at Spec Online
What a joke. The OPP can't handle the Indians so they go after the customers. This is nothing more than a public relations gimmick. They can't possibly nab everyone leaving the reserve with smokes. There are hundreds of smoke shacks and they can't possibly cover all the entrances and exits. Once the natives find out whats going on there is going to be even more trouble. The police don't dare go on the reserve, so they have no possible way of knowing who has bought ciggarettes and who was just passing through. If you buy smokes hide them in your car. They cannot just search you unless they are in plain sight. Refuse to let them search your car without a warrant. Otherwise it constitutes illegal search and siezure.
Toggle Commented Aug 21, 2009 on Confiscating reserve smokes at Spec Online
The only deterent that I can see working, is taking a sledgehammer to their hands making it impossible for them to use spray cans. The damage created by these losers is a blight on our cities and they should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. Youthful misadventure is one thing but most of the people creating this mess are adults and should be held accountable for their actions as adults.
Toggle Commented Aug 7, 2009 on The art of dealing with graffiti at Spec Online
Some of the naysayers posting here might want to read the most recent comments from Judge Baum. Basically, he said that the Balsillie bid still remains on the table and and at this point is the best offer on the table. This story isn't over.
Toggle Commented Aug 4, 2009 on NHL dream or nightmare? at Spec Online
They did the right thing. Taxpayers should not be liable for something that was an act of nature. If there are some instances where the city is at fault then by all means offer limited support and fix the problems. But acting as an insurer is not the solution. Under the circumstances, the councillors acted in the best interests of all taxpayers of the city by not going along with this. If the only way to do it was by not showing up and canceling the meeting due to a lack of quorum thats just fine with me. It will be dealt with in due time by the whole council.
Toggle Commented Jul 31, 2009 on Against the current at Spec Online
Did anyone expect the NHL to make any other decision. Balsillie was approved for ownership just three years ago, nothing has changed. The judge stated as much as mentioned in the article. As Terry Whitehead said this is just posturing by the NHL. The judge will decide who the new owner will be based on what is best for the creditors. If he deems Mr. Balsillie's bid to be the best then he will be the new owner whether the NHL likes it or not. This story is far from over.
Toggle Commented Jul 30, 2009 on NHL dream or nightmare? at Spec Online
This is getting to be an absolute joke. These people were breaking the law. They should have been ask to move off the highway. If they failed to do so, they should be arrested and charged. If they resist arrest charge them with that as well. I am getting sick and tired of all these losers, and thats what they are losers, disrupting my life and the lives of others for lost causes. Whether it be native Canadians or Tamils or any other group, if they break the law while protesting arrest and charge them. The police should be able to do whatever is neccessary to break up the illegal protests. If that includes getting physical then so be it.
Toggle Commented Jun 13, 2009 on At peace with highway protests? at Spec Online
The renderings look awesome. Lets hope it happens. I too am a little skeptical having experienced past disappointments in this city, maybe this time it will be different.
Toggle Commented May 30, 2009 on Copps makeover at Hall Marks
It's a perfect location, close to transportation, lots of parking and a nice view of the harbour. My only concern is the size, it's too small. Hopefully, they will get the capacity up to at least 30,000, if we get the games.
Toggle Commented May 29, 2009 on Stadium by the bay at Spec Online
Thats it, just keep piling on the expenses to businesses that are already paying high taxes. The city needs another business district with lots of vacant buildings. Thats what will happen when the owners can't make money. Why should these bars and restaurants be penalized because they are successful. They pay taxes policing should be provided. As for other festivals and bars paying for paid duty officers, festivals don't pay property and business taxes and bars hiring paid duty officers is nothing more than extortion. They know that if they don't hire paid duty officers they will be endlessly harrassed by the police. The idea that the people living in the area shouldn't be subjected to all the noise and commotion is just nonsense. Hess village has been there longer than most of those residents. If you move into a commercial area with lots of bars and restaurants then you better expect those problems. It would be like someone moving in beside an airport and wanting to stop planes from taking off and landing because they make noise. Hess Village is the only diamond in what is the crown of thorns that we call downtown Hamilton. The city should be supporting it and it's growth not burdening it with excessive taxation and regulation.
Toggle Commented May 22, 2009 on Policing Hess at Hall Marks