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GiveLife.ca

    
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PRINT EDITION
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Globe Columnists
Monday, September 16




  Marcus Gee
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The World



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Free roads are taking their toll on Canada's highways space
Toronto should look to France's model system, which maintains infrastructure and puts the brakes on congestion
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, September 7, 2019 – Page A16
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-- A traveller driving into Toronto from the airport after a sojourn in the south of France finds himself missing more than the cheese and the rose. He misses the roads. The roads leading to downtown from Pearson are a sight. Rusty guardrails, pitted asphalt, poor signage. The highways in France make this city look like something out of Eastern Europe before the Berlin Wall came down. They are smooth, clean, beautifully maintained - and, more often than not, tolled.  FULL STORY arrow
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Jailing people for hate speech undermines democracy's strength space
Our system is safe only if even the most odious views can be aired and challenged
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, August 31, 2019 – Page A14
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-- This month a Toronto judge ordered two men to be deprived of their freedom over words and pictures they published in a paper - and no one said boo. Not the press, which mostly confined itself to reporting the bare facts of the case. Certainly not any of the political parties, even though their existence depends on the right to speak freely and sharply.  FULL STORY arrow
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A portrait of loss: 15 women, 16 overdose deaths, one national drug crisis space
These women have lost loved ones to a deadly affliction, but want them to be remembered as more than just 'addicts'
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By MARCUS GEE
Thursday, August 29, 2019 – Page A8
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KELOWNA, B.C. -- A group of women from the Kelowna area who have lost loved ones to drug overdoses were looking for a way to illustrate the depth of the crisis. Helen Jennens, who lost two sons, suggested making crosses and posing beside them in the outdoors. The picture would help publicize International Overdose Awareness Day, which falls on Aug. 31.  FULL STORY arrow
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Calendar of grief: A mother records her son's opioid addiction space
Dustin Richardson's struggle to stay clean has included relapses and overdoses. His mother has kept a meticulous account of them all
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By MARCUS GEE
Friday, August 9, 2019 – Page A1
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ORO-MEDONTE, ONT. -- Linda Lee Logan keeps a big calendar on the wall to help her remember coming dates: the day her granddaughter graduates from college; the day a workman starts staining her new garage; the days she is to give her dogs their flea-and-tick medication.  FULL STORY arrow
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How the tech industry boom is transforming the city space
Although Toronto has lots of natural advantages, it doesn't have a top-ranking tech 'ecosystem' yet
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, July 27, 2019 – Page A14
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-- The Canadian Encyclopedia notes that Toronto's economy has gone through many phases over the city's history: ''commercial lake port, railway and industrial hub, financial nexus and high-level service and information centre.''  FULL STORY arrow
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Time to get tough on obnoxious car noise space
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, July 20, 2019 – Page A14
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-- Imagine, just for a minute, there was a device that allowed motorists to make more fumes come out of a vehicle's exhaust pipe - not to decrease the amount of pollution, in other words, but to increase it.  FULL STORY arrow
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It's time to think about tearing down the Rogers Centre space
No amount of renovations will solve the outmoded stadium's fundamental problem: It's too big for baseball
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, July 13, 2019 – Page A14
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-- There has been a lot of talk lately about the future of the Rogers Centre, the home of baseball's Blue Jays. Officials hint that they want to renovate and modernize the stadium.  FULL STORY arrow
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Kawhi is the hero Toronto needs space
The city's frenzy over the Raptors player who helped the team become champions may be silly, but that's okay
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, July 6, 2019 – Page A3
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-- This week a big, sophisticated North American city went out of its mind over the future of a basketball player. A local news helicopter followed his suspected movements and carried them live. Fans swarmed the hotel where he was supposed to be having meetings. A sports broadcaster carried a breathless ''Kawhi Watch.''  FULL STORY arrow
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Two ways that Sidewalk Labs can help Toronto space
A booming city desperately needs good ideas and space to grow near its core
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, June 29, 2019 – Page A16
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-- Critics of Sidewalk Labs were not impressed when it unveiled its detailed plan for Toronto's waterfront this week. Since Monday's announcement, they have only stepped up their attacks. Some said the plan was too vague, others too ambitious. One city councillor called it a blatant ''land grab.'' Jim Balsillie of BlackBerry fame went as far as to say that the project could affect ''our autonomy, our democracy and our security.''  FULL STORY arrow
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Raptors celebration is a stirring glimpse of Canada's identity space
Canada's diversity was never more apparent than during Monday's procession
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By MARCUS GEE
Tuesday, June 18, 2019 – Page A8
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-- Monday's parade in Toronto was more than just a joyous celebration of the Raptors' victory. It was a glimpse of today's Canada. The throngs that gathered to cheer their team were the image of the country's future: youthful, full of life, energy and hope, stunningly diverse.  FULL STORY arrow
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Campaign in Barrie seeks to fence off opioid crisis space
Advocates say residents' petitions for fencing around a centre for homeless people and drug users would only cover up the city's scars
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, June 15, 2019 – Page A16
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E BARRIE, ONT. -- A campaign by residents to put up a big fence alongside a centre for the homeless and addicted here is highlighting the tensions in many Canadian communities about how to cope with the nationwide opioids crisis.  FULL STORY arrow
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Not everything Ford does is bad for the city space
Despite local opposition, some of the provincial government's moves could actually improve life in Toronto
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By MARCUS GEE
Monday, June 10, 2019 – Page A8
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-- If you work inside the clamshell at City Hall, it must sometimes seem that the barbarian is at the gates. Ontario's Progressive Conservative Premier, Doug Ford, has strong ideas about the city where he grew up.  FULL STORY arrow
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Suddenly, the city has faith in the Raptors space
With fans crowding the streets of Toronto in celebration, the team's confidence has proved to be contagious
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, June 1, 2019 – Page A16
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-- At 1 a.m. on Friday morning, more than an hour after the Toronto Raptors beat the Golden State Warriors in Game 1 of the National Basketball Association finals, the corner of Yonge and Dundas streets was still utter bedlam. Every driver that managed to pass through the crowds spilling off the sidewalk was leaning on the horn with abandon. Every vehicle with a sun roof had a waving flag or a raving fan sticking out of it. Every dude with a roaring motorbike or muscle car had converged on the city's central hub.  FULL STORY arrow
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One reason not to hate the city's condo boom space
Developers and artists are working together to construct brilliant new creative spaces
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, May 25, 2019 – Page A17
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-- Condo-bashing is a popular pastime in Toronto. The bashers say the scores of glass towers that have sprouted all over the city are a blight on the cityscape. Who would want to live in a box in the sky anyway?  FULL STORY arrow
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War bride ready to bloom at Queen's garden party space
Ninety-six-year-old Dorothy Marshall, who came to Canada in 1946, plans to enjoy well-deserved visit at palace, Marcus Gee writes
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By MARCUS GEE
Monday, May 20, 2019 – Page A1
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-- Dorothy Marshall is practising her curtsy in her Toronto living room. It is a shallow curtsy, not the deep bend a younger woman might attempt when meeting the Queen. Ms. Marshall has a ''bonky knee'' and she doesn't want to overdo things, not at the age of 96.  FULL STORY arrow
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A second look at the recycling religion space
Cities should think about what we put in the blue bin and why
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, May 18, 2019 – Page A15
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-- It is time for a big rethink about recycling. For years now, cities have been urging residents to sort their trash and put the recyclable stuff in the blue bin for pick-up. Most people happily go along. Recycling gives them the sense that they are doing something in their daily lives to protect the environment. But does it really work? Legitimate doubts have begun to creep in.  FULL STORY arrow
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For Caro converts, tomorrow is ours to win or lose space
In the weekly series The Enthusiast, The Globe and Mail's writers offer a window into their own private cultural lives: what they're watching, reading, seeing and listening to. This week, Marcus Gee dives into a Pulitzer-winning biographer's four titanic tomes on the career of Lyndon Johnson - and says a little prayer for a fifth
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, May 18, 2019 – Page R8
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-- Robert Caro has a new book out. If you're a serious Caro fan like me, that is both good news and bad news. Good because anything by this master storyteller is bound to be terrific.  FULL STORY arrow
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Six years to build a bike garage? space
City hall is giving Ford ammunition with mismanaged projects such as this
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, May 11, 2019 – Page A15
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-- Doug Ford seldom misses a chance to take a shot at Toronto's government. When he was a member of city council and his brother Rob was mayor, he was always denouncing city hall for wasting money and picking the taxpayer's pocket. The Fords famously pledged to ''stop the gravy train.''  FULL STORY arrow
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Attenborough gives voice to a world in danger in Our Planet space
The latest series to boast the nature-doc veteran's narration comes with all the beauty you'd expect - and a more urgent message than ever
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, May 11, 2019 – Page R16
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-- A herd of caribou streams from the tundra into the forest, seeking shelter from the approaching winter. They are not alone, a narrator's voice tells us. Looking down at them through the eye of a camera somewhere in the sky above, we see low-slung shapes trotting after them, following their tracks in the snow. The familiar, husky voice pronounces: ''Wolves.''  FULL STORY arrow
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What were all the Ford critics doing when the Liberals ran up the bills? Egging them on space
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, May 4, 2019 – Page A16
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-- A post going around social media asks those who are bellyaching about Premier Doug Ford's recent spending cuts where the heck they were when Kathleen Wynne and the Liberals were bankrupting the Ontario government. Except the word it uses isn't heck.  FULL STORY arrow
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St. Clair is no 'disaster' zone: It teems with life space
Once cluttered with three lanes of traffic, the transitway today has a hospitable, urban feel
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, April 27, 2019 – Page A16
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-- Every time Toronto redesigns a street to calm traffic or make transit vehicles flow better, there is the most tremendous fuss. It happened on St. Clair Avenue West. It happened on Roncesvalles Avenue. It happened in spades on King Street, where merchants said that limiting car traffic was killing business and turning the street into a ghost town. It is happening in advance on Eglinton Avenue. Messy construction on the giant Crosstown light-rail project has left many residents seething.  FULL STORY arrow
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City's top medical official a leading voice against health cuts space
Eileen de Villa says province's decision to slash public funding amid an opioid crisis will have 'significant negative impacts'
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By MARCUS GEE
Thursday, April 25, 2019 – Page A7
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-- When the Doug Ford government decided to cut funding to Ontario cities for public health, it must have expected local politicians to protest. What it might not have reckoned on is the soft-spoken grit of a civil servant.  FULL STORY arrow
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Remember, yes - better still, move forward space
One year on, pausing to reflect on the tragedy on Yonge is important. But the healing and reclamation of the street has already begun
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By MARCUS GEE
Wednesday, April 24, 2019 – Page A10
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-- Despite the spring rain that drove the main event inside, the ceremony marking the first anniversary of the Yonge Street van attack came off beautifully. A bell rang for each of the 10 dead as mourners came one by one to place flowers in a vase in their memory. The city's poet laureate told a hushed auditorium: ''They are with us here, still making the choice they always made - to rejoice.'' A man with a baby in one arm reached down to clasp his wife's hand as a choir sang a hymn.  FULL STORY arrow
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Kensington residents rally behind supervised drug-use site space
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By MARCUS GEE
Monday, April 22, 2019 – Page A6
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-- After Ontario's Progressive Conservative government announced last month that it would stop funding a number of supervised drug-use sites in the province, Premier Doug Ford suggested a reason: Neighbours often don't like them. While it is a good thing to help people suffering from drug addiction, he told reporters, ''with all due respect ... if I put one beside your house, you'd be going ballistic.'' That, he said, was simply ''the reality of things.''  FULL STORY arrow
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The wrong crusade for a rights group space
The CCLA has much more serious threats to tackle than Sidewalk Labs
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, April 20, 2019 – Page A16
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-- The Canadian Civil Liberties Association is selective with its outrage.When, in January, a court convicted two Toronto men of willfully promoting hatred in the nasty little paper they produce, Your Ward News, the CCLA's only response was a blog post saying that using the criminal law against speech can put a chill on free expression.  FULL STORY arrow
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Another transit plan to stick on the fridge space
Much of Premier Ford's subway scheme for Toronto is impractical or whimsical
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, April 13, 2019 – Page A17
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-- When a politician unveils another map of what Toronto's mass-transit network will look like in some ideal future, the people of Toronto respond the way parents do when a second-grader brings home her latest work of art from school.  FULL STORY arrow
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Three mothers affected by the opioid crisis demand change space
Political leaders have made speeches about devastating epidemic, but these women want more than just talk
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By MARCUS GEE
Monday, April 8, 2019 – Page A8
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-- Three mothers stricken by the opioids crisis have gathered for a question-and-answer session in the brightly lit meeting room of a Toronto housing co-op. Mary Byberg lost a daughter to a drug overdose. Ann Murray lost a son. Sheila Jennings has a son who has overdosed several times, coming close to death.  FULL STORY arrow
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Federal carbon tax won't 'punish' ordinary Canadians space
Trudeau's new levy is a brave, prudent, long-overdue attempt to put a price on pollution
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, April 6, 2019 – Page A18
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-- When Canadian conservatives stepped up their irresponsible, opportunistic campaign against Ottawa's new carbon tax this week, it was no surprise that fire-breathing populists such as Ontario Premier Doug Ford led the charge.  FULL STORY arrow
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This city's twisted, tortured transit saga resembles Brexit space
We can't have successive mayors and premiers endlessly revisiting infrastructure projects and redrawing maps
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, March 30, 2019 – Page A17
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-- Toronto's transit saga is like Brexit, only longer. It goes on and on, round and round, and nothing is ever settled.Politicians have been arguing for years about what the city's future mass-transit network should look like. Where should the first new routes go, downtown or in the suburbs? Should the vehicles travel underground or on the surface? Britain's Parliament looks positively decisive by comparison.  FULL STORY arrow
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'Write me soon. Stay safe' A story of Canada's opioid crisis, told in letters from prison space
Sharing a cell made Spencer Kell and Manie Daniels friends. When one made it out and the other didn't, they corresponded about friendship and hope for the future - until one of their lives took a tragic turn
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By MARCUS GEE
Thursday, March 28, 2019 – Page A10
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-- When Spencer Kell got out of jail last spring, leaving his cellmate Manie Daniels behind, the two friends started exchanging letters.Mr. Daniels's, written in flowing cursive script, came to Mr. Kell in Ottawa, where he was trying to stay clean and build a new life. Mr. Kell's, in bold block letters, arrived at Maplehurst prison in Milton, Ont., where Mr. Daniels was serving out the final months of his latest stretch behind bars.  FULL STORY arrow
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The Ford-Taverner affair isn't over space
Ontario Premier still has lots of questions to answer about his friend and the OPP
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, March 9, 2019 – Page A17
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-- Ron Taverner fell on his sword. The Toronto cop said this week he would no longer seek to lead the Ontario Provincial Police. Good. The well-justified uproar over his appointment by the Progressive Conservative government of Premier Doug Ford, who happens to be his friend, made it impossible for him to carry on.  FULL STORY arrow
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Doug Ford wrote me an e-mail space
Premier's fundraising pitches say a lot about his buck-a-beer brand of populism
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, March 2, 2019 – Page A15
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-- I''ve been getting a lot of messages from Doug Ford lately.Mistaking me for a potential donor to his party, he has been bombarding me with e-mails boasting about his accomplishments and asking me for money to help him win the next election.  FULL STORY arrow
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In Brantford's opioid nightmare, a community sees more hopeful days ahead space
A year of surging overdose deaths spurred the Ontario city to action. Now, signs of progress are appearing, although officials warn that the battle to quell this epidemic has only just begun
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By MARCUS GEE
Monday, February 25, 2019 – Page A10
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-- Canada's opioids epidemic rolled over this historic Southwestern Ontario city like the wave from a burst dam.The first ripples were felt a couple years ago. On a summer weekend in 2016, Brantford recorded four drug overdoses, one of them fatal. That fall, two women collapsed from overdose while pushing a stroller down the street. Kids who attend a local youth centre began seeing their mothers, fathers or other adults overdose right in front of them at home. More discarded hypodermic needles started showing up on city streets and in public parks. Child-protection officials even found a needle in a toy box.  FULL STORY arrow
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THE CHILDREN LEFT BEHIND space
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By MARCUS GEE
Monday, February 25, 2019 – Page A11
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-- Children are paying a heavy price for the drug-overdose epidemic. Some lose mothers or fathers to an overdose. Some go hungry or neglected because their parents suffer from addiction. Some are born addicted themselves because the mother used drugs while pregnant. Some have to recover from the trauma of having a parent OD and collapse.  FULL STORY arrow
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City should be delighted by Sidewalk's waterfront plans space
Skeptics are hurling spitballs at a project that could help Toronto prepare for the future
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, February 23, 2019 – Page A19
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-- Sometimes Sidewalk Labs must wonder why on Earth it ever came to Toronto.The Google offspring arrived in the city with a splash in 2017 when Waterfront Toronto chose it to create a 21st-century neighbourhood that would use data and technology to improve the quality of urban life. It seemed like excellent news. One of the world's richest companies was coming to town to help Toronto prepare for the future. Sidewalk Labs chief Dan Doctoroff, a top business executive and former deputy mayor of New York, said Toronto was just the place to experiment with using things such as autonomous vehicles, freight robots and street sensors to build a smarter, more sustainable city.  FULL STORY arrow
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McArthur faces justice at last space
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, February 9, 2019 – Page A16
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-- When he had finished summing up the reasons for his sentence, Justice John McMahon asked Bruce McArthur to rise. ''Mr. McArthur, sir, will you please stand up.'' The convicted serial killer, wearing a black sweater and plaid shirt, faced the bench. The judge, in his robes and red sash of office, looked down at him, peering over lowered eyeglasses.  FULL STORY arrow
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Victims' humanity shines through in court space
Families, friends give emotional, often tearful testimonies that conjure images of eight kind, generous men
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By MARCUS GEE
Tuesday, February 5, 2019 – Page A6
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-- Before the sentencing hearing for serial killer Bruce McArthur got under way in a Toronto court on Monday, Crown attorney Michael Cantlon stood to make what he called a highly unusual statement. You are about to hear terrible things, he told those gathered in the public gallery - so terrible that your health and well-being might suffer.  FULL STORY arrow
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In a Brantford coffee shop, the toll of the opioid crisis is in full view space
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By MARCUS GEE
Monday, February 4, 2019 – Page A1
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-- An average of 11 Canadians a day die of drug overdoses.A shelf full of studies lays out the depth of the crisis, which has spread from Vancouver Island to Newfoundland.  FULL STORY arrow
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McArthur's guilty plea leaves crucial questions unanswered space
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By MARCUS GEE
Wednesday, January 30, 2019 – Page A6
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-- Minutes after Bruce McArthur pleaded guilty to murdering eight men with ties to Toronto's Gay Village, Karen Fraser stepped out of the downtown courthouse to answer questions from reporters. It was at her house in the quiet neighbourhood of Leaside that the friendly landscaper buried the remains of his victims, concealing body parts in planters on the property. A reporter asked her if his formal acknowledgment of responsibility brought some kind of closure. She said she didn't really believe in closure in a case such as this. Some kind of ''easing'' was all we should expect.  FULL STORY arrow
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Using the law's hammer on hateful material is wrong space
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By MARCUS GEE
Friday, January 25, 2019 – Page A5
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-- Right-thinking people all over the country are applauding a judge's decision to convict the editor and publisher of an awful little newspaper in Toronto's east end of promoting hatred. They should not be. It's always wrong to suppress speech, even the vilest kind. It is doubly wrong to use the criminal law to suppress it. Having an open society means guarding the right to think the unthinkable and say the unsayable, whomever it may offend.  FULL STORY arrow
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The Pride parade and the politics of spite space
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By MARCUS GEE
Thursday, January 24, 2019 – Page A7
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-- Canadians look with pity on their cousins to the south when they see the rancour, division and sheer stupidity that marks political life in the United States these days. But those qualities are creeping into our politics, too. One small example is what has happened to Toronto's Pride parade.  FULL STORY arrow
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Conductor Ford's gravy train continues moving at full steam space
Premier's appointments are far from his promise to bring integrity and accountability back to the halls of power
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, January 19, 2019 – Page A16
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-- Premier Doug Ford continues to defend the provincial government's decision to appoint his friend Ron Taverner to head the Ontario Provincial Police. Mr. Ford said this week that he didn't know what all the fuss was about. This was a ''political appointment,'' he argued, and he had the right to choose anyone he wished.  FULL STORY arrow
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A famous international murder trial, now forgotten space
A recent obituary spoke kindly of Cyril Belshaw, but in 1979, the case of his wife's death gripped observers everywhere
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, January 12, 2019 – Page A16
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-- At the start of December, 2018, a notice appeared in the obituary columns of Canadian newspapers for Cyril Belshaw, a noted professor who taught at the University of British Columbia. Prof. Belshaw had died on Nov. 20, just short of his 97th birthday.  FULL STORY arrow
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A friend of the Premier should never be head of the OPP space
Public suspicion that police might be influenced puts integrity of justice system at risk
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, January 12, 2019 – Page A17
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-- Ontario's Integrity Commissioner is investigating the provincial government's decision to name a friend of the Premier to head the Ontario Provincial Police. That's good as far as it goes. There is much that needs investigating about this dubious appointment. But the matter should not end there. Whatever the commissioner finds, it is simply wrong to have a personal friend of the Premier running the police force.  FULL STORY arrow
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Oshawa clinic takes a different tack on recovery space
The Pinewood Centre's acudetox drop-in becomes a popular option in the continuing fight against opioids
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By MARCUS GEE
Thursday, January 3, 2019 – Page A9
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OSHAWA, ONT. -- A dozen men and women sit in chairs arranged around the walls of a dimly lit room, short, orange-coloured acupuncture needles protruding from their ears. Soothing music plays on the sound system. A screen shows a video of jellyfish floating rhythmically amid blue waters.  FULL STORY arrow
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The danger beyond the prison gates space
Ex-prisoners face a heightened risk of fatal overdose upon their release, and advocates say officials aren't doing enough to prevent it
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, December 1, 2018 – Page A15
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-- In his short life, Scott Sirman caused a world of trouble for his mom, Karen Bell. He started stealing cars when he was in his teens. A drug user, he was in and out of jail in his 20s. The family had to move when they found out he was dealing methamphetamine from their house in Calgary. He told them: My suppliers are looking for me and they know where you live.  FULL STORY arrow
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The lesson of Colonel Sam: Oshawa will move on space
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By MARCUS GEE
Wednesday, November 28, 2018 – Page A7
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OSHAWA, ONT. -- Robert Samuel McLaughlin was a carriage maker. Carriage making was a pretty good business in his day. His father built the family company, starting off making axe handles and graduating to wagons and sleighs. In time, the McLaughlin Carriage Works of Oshawa, Ont., became the biggest manufacturer of carriages in the British Empire But Mr. McLaughlin saw something new coming down the road: the horseless carriage. He and his brother George persuaded their skeptical father that they should start making automobiles. Partnering with the Buick company south of the border, they manufactured first Buicks, then Chevrolets. In 1918, the firm became General Motors of Canada. Mr. McLaughlin was its leader, known around town as Mr. Sam or Colonel Sam.  FULL STORY arrow
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Ford's wild plan to spend billions on subways space
Ontario's Premier says the expansion will run smoothly with the province in charge
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, November 24, 2018 – Page A17
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-- When it comes to public transit, the late Rob Ford famously said, the people of Toronto are clear about what they want: ''Subways, subways, subways.'' Now his brother Doug, recently elected premier of Ontario, is promising to give them their hearts' desire. He wants to spend billions on building new subways. And to make the building go more quickly and smoothly, the provincial government would assume ownership of the whole subway network.  FULL STORY arrow
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A YEAR OF ARCHITECTURE DONE WRIGHT space
Once a skeptic of the cult of Frank Lloyd Wright, Marcus Gee became a believer after visiting Fallingwater in Pennsylvania. Then he set out to take in as much of the late American's work as he could, visiting sites across the United States
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, November 24, 2018 – Page R6
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-- The adoration lavished on Frank Lloyd Wright can sometimes seem a little much. Already substantial in his lifetime, the master architect's fame has grown and grown since his death in 1959 at the age of 91.  FULL STORY arrow
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HAZEL MCCALLION ELECTED MAYOR OF MISSISSAUGA space
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By MARCUS GEE
Tuesday, November 13, 2018 – Page A2
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A day in the life of Vancouver's Downtown Eastside space
How have we let things go so wrong for Canada's roughest neighbourhood?
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, November 10, 2018 – Page A21
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VANCOUVER -- It's just another day on Vancouver's Downtown Eastside.A young man sits on the wet sidewalk, his legs spread wide, sucking the smoke from a burning fragment of dope with a plastic tube. A man with lank black hair is slumped against a wall, bent over double like a limp marionette, his dangling arm twitching at his side. A woman in skinny jeans, leaning on a storefront, pulls the plunger of a syringe carefully up and down, getting ready to give herself a hit. An open package of dainty cookies lies by her side.  FULL STORY arrow
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How one Ontario hospital treats patients, not just opioid overdoses space
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By MARCUS GEE
Wednesday, October 31, 2018 – Page A1
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OSHAWA, ONT. -- Angelica Helpard has had six drug overdoses this year. In the age of fentanyl, the potent synthetic opioid, any one of them might have killed her. She showed up in the busy emergency department of Oshawa Hospital over and over, only to be discharged back onto the streets to use dangerous drugs again.  FULL STORY arrow
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Rocked by opioids, Barrie struggles to find relief space
The Ford government's recent decision to cap provincial resources threatens to leave city's vulnerable in the lurch
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, October 27, 2018 – Page A15
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BARRIE, ONT. -- Barrie's downtown is looking up. Boutiques selling yoga wear, chocolates, crepes and cappuccinos welcome customers strolling along the once-rundown main drag, Dunlop Street East.But walk a minute or two down Dunlop, and you may see a different side of this growing city an hour's drive north of Toronto: doorways full of garbage and used syringes, sex workers patrolling to support a drug habit, a poster on a store window proclaiming in big letters: ''Naloxone Kits Available Here.'' The kits help reverse drug overdoses that, especially these days, can often be fatal.  FULL STORY arrow
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Tory's re-election proves that bland still works space
Voters seem to want a steady hand at the helm now, and the incumbent mayor offers just that
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By MARCUS GEE
Tuesday, October 23, 2018 – Page A8
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-- Hugh Winsor, a long-time political writer for The Globe and Mail, once asked the premier of Ontario, Bill Davis, why he ran such a dull, bland government. Well, Mr. Davis famously replied, ''Bland works.'' And it did. The unflappable small-town boy from Brampton, Ont., governed the province with calm assurance from 1971 to 1985, sucking away on his pipe while others around him lost their wits.  FULL STORY arrow
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Disappointing campaign is no reason to avoid voting space
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By MARCUS GEE
Monday, October 22, 2018 – Page A3
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-- Toronto's municipal election campaign has been disappointing in many ways.Elections are most compelling when they feature a big issue or a close race for the top spot. Neither has emerged in this contest.  FULL STORY arrow
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Toronto's politicians should leave transit network planning to the experts space
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By MARCUS GEE
Monday, October 15, 2018 – Page A14
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-- When John Tory ran for mayor of Toronto in 2014, his biggest, shiniest promise was something called SmartTrack, a 22-stop Londonstyle ''surface subway'' that would ''bring transit and congestion relief to the whole city.'' Four years later, running for re-election, he has some explaining to do.  FULL STORY arrow
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Why is Tory avoiding a one-on-one debate with his main rival? space
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By MARCUS GEE
Friday, October 5, 2018 – Page A10
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-- What is John Tory afraid of? Toronto's mayor is refusing to take part in any head-to-head debates with his leading rival in the current election campaign, former chief planner Jennifer Keesmaat. He says he will show up only for debates that include other, lesser candidates.  FULL STORY arrow
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Why the Keesmaat campaign is faltering space
The mayoral candidate's vision seems insincere, and her attacks on Mayor John Tory are often unfounded
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, September 29, 2018 – Page A19
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-- Jennifer Keesmaat is in trouble.Her campaign to replace John Tory as mayor of Toronto has not achieved lift off and, with the election only three weeks away, time is running out. That's a shame, because Mr. Tory deserves to be challenged and voters deserve a choice.  FULL STORY arrow
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Just north of the city, it's all sunny days in Ford Nation space
Cutting council in half drew the ire of downtown residents, but the Premier's faithful are feeling good
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By MARCUS GEE
Monday, September 24, 2018 – Page A6
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-- Toronto may be in an uproar over Doug Ford's out-ofthe-blue decision to cut city council in half and redraw the ward map in the middle of an election campaign. Former Ontario premiers of all three major parties may have condemned him for threatening to trigger a rarely used override clause in the Constitution to ram his plan through. But on a Saturday night up in Vaughan, the sprawling Toronto exurb north of the city, it's alllll good.  FULL STORY arrow
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Beware the echoes in the Ford government space
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, September 22, 2018 – Page A16
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-- An outspoken new leader takes the stage. He hurls abuse at his political enemies. He suggests that politicians are worthless. He questions the right of mere judges to stand in his way. He says it's time to put the people back in the driver's seat.  FULL STORY arrow
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Don't cheer too hard, Mr. Ford, there could be more twists yet space
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By MARCUS GEE
Thursday, September 20, 2018 – Page A10
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-- Ontario Premier Doug Ford's troops were in a triumphant mood Wednesday morning. An appeal court had just stayed a judge's decision that blocked Mr. Ford's sudden move to slash the size of Toronto city council. So it was full steam ahead with a city election under a system of 25 wards instead of 47.  FULL STORY arrow
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Caroline Mulroney's testing time space
Is the Attorney-General doing her job as chief law officer?
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By MARCUS GEE
Friday, September 14, 2018 – Page A7
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-- Just weeks into her new career as an elected politician, Caroline Mulroney finds herself in a tight spot.Her leader, Doug Ford, head of Ontario's Progressive Conservative government, is invoking the notwithstanding clause to overrule a judge who blocked his move to slash the size of Toronto city council. Among the critics of the move is respected former premier Bill Davis. Her own father, former prime minister Brian Mulroney, says that he ''was never a big fan of the notwithstanding clause.'' While he says the clause is ''not anti-democratic,'' because it's in the Constitution, he never used it and doesn't like the idea of governments overruling the courts. ''The backbone and the enormous strength of Canada is the independence and the magnificence of our judiciary,'' he said this week.  FULL STORY arrow
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Use of notwithstanding clause exposes dangerous loophole in Constitution space
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By MARCUS GEE
Thursday, September 13, 2018 – Page A4
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-- When weary negotiators reached an 11th-hour deal to put a get-out-ofjail-free card in the Constitution back in 1981, it struck many Canadians as harmless enough.Though some legal scholars objected and Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau resisted, it looked at first like a clever Canadian compromise. Yes, Canada would get a new Charter of Rights and Freedoms in its patriated Constitution, fulfilling Mr. Trudeau's dream of securing the country's unity by guaranteeing the rights of all. And, yes, judges would get new power to enforce those rights. But if a premier or prime minister really, really objected to a court's ruling, well, they could always override it.  FULL STORY arrow
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Ford is challenging the rule of law itself space
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By MARCUS GEE
Tuesday, September 11, 2018 – Page A8
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-- Ours is a government of laws not of men. Even the strongest mandate from voters doesn't make our leaders all-powerful. They are subject to the law like anyone else.  FULL STORY arrow
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It's time to crack down on unnecessary noise pollution space
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, September 8, 2018 – Page A16
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-- City dwellers learn to expect a certain amount of ambient noise. The rumble of moving streetcars or subway trains, the rush of passing traffic, the clamour of the schoolyard, the din of heavy construction - it's the background music of urban life. But unnecessary, obnoxious noise is another matter. There is far too much of it in Canadian cities, drowning out conversation, disturbing quiet neighbourhoods and putting us all on edge.  FULL STORY arrow
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Even without rose-tinted glasses, life's still a lot rosier space
Why won't we believe the world's a better place? Recent books challenge our society's unwarranted pessimism
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, August 25, 2018 – Page A8
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-- When Hans Rosling was growing up in Sweden, he dreamed of being a circus performer. His parents sent him to medical school instead. One day, in the course of a dull lesson on how the throat works, a professor showed his class an X-ray of a man swallowing a sword. Inspired, Mr. Rosling tried to put a fishing rod down his throat. No go.  FULL STORY arrow
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Toronto is right to fight back against Ford's council reduction space
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By MARCUS GEE
Tuesday, August 21, 2018 – Page A5
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-- The battle to prevent Ontario Premier Doug Ford from cutting the size of Toronto city council is probably lost. It was probably lost the moment that Mr. Ford announced the plan last month.  FULL STORY arrow
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Airport security: an exercise in absurdity space
Our reactionary approach toward policing air travel comes at a cost and distracts from more pressing issues
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, August 11, 2018 – Page A15
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-- The couple in front of me in the security line at Vancouver's airport looked to be about 70. He was a big sunburned guy in cargo shorts and floppy hat. She wore a sleeveless blouse and sandals. A less threatening pair would be hard to imagine. Unless I was off the mark and these were diabolical masters of disguise, they were just a man and woman on vacation.  FULL STORY arrow
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Ford's buck-a-beer plan is cheesy populism space
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By MARCUS GEE
Wednesday, August 8, 2018 – Page A6
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-- It was with a 100-watt grin on his face and two chuckling cabinet ministers at his side that Premier Doug Ford announced that he was keeping the goofiest of his election promises: the return of $1 beer. ''Ontario, the day you've been waiting for is finally here,'' he said, in the triumphal tone of a Roman emperor announcing the return of the republic.  FULL STORY arrow
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Keesmaat's mayoral bid is good for the city's democracy space
Although this will be her first run for political office, the formidable candidate poses a challenge to John Tory
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By MARCUS GEE
Monday, July 30, 2018 – Page A9
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-- Jennifer Keesmaat became Toronto's chief planner in 2012. It was clear right from the start that she was an unusual kind of bureaucrat. Engaging, outspoken, telegenic, she often seemed less an official than a politician.  FULL STORY arrow
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Ford's plan is vindictive and undemocratic space
Cutting city council nearly in half will hurt the people the Premier says he's advocating for
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, July 28, 2018 – Page A11
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-- Like one-buck beer and a 10cent discount on gas, cutting the size of Toronto City Council is a crowd-pleaser.Cheaper beer and fuel. Great! Fewer politicians. Wonderful! In fact, this is a bad idea - hasty, undemocratic and unnecessary.  FULL STORY arrow
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Read 'em while it's hot space
What makes a great beach read? What do you pull from the cottage shelf on a lazy afternoon? In honour of the dog days of summer, from now until Labour Day, reporters and editors from across The Globe share their favourite summer books. From birding classics to ice-cool autobiographies, there's something here for everyone
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, July 28, 2018 – Page P16
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-- THIS BIRD GUIDE IN THE HAND IS WORTH TWO IN THE BUSHI'm an incompetent birder. I've been watching birds on and off for 50 years and I'm still pretty bad at telling one kind from another.  FULL STORY arrow
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Despite this horror, Danforth will stay strong space
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By MARCUS GEE
Tuesday, July 24, 2018 – Page A8
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-- ''The Danforth,'' as everyone calls it, is a very Toronto street. Broad and open, Danforth Avenue stretches from the majestic Don Valley in the west into the reaches of the city's old east end.  FULL STORY arrow
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How Oshawa's comeback left some residents behind space
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By MARCUS GEE
Monday, July 16, 2018 – Page A7
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OSHAWA, ONT. -- Oshawa Creek wends its way through the heart of this Toronto-area city to empty into Lake Ontario. In earlier times, tanneries and other polluting industries lined its banks. Today, salmon and trout swim up the rushing stream in spawning season and cyclists enjoy a well-tended bike path. The creek's revival is one sign of a robust urban comeback that is transforming Oshawa from a struggling postindustrial city to a growing bedroom community and employment hub.  FULL STORY arrow
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Gun violence must not stop the police transformation space
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, July 14, 2018 – Page A17
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-- The last thing that Toronto needs as it struggles with a surge in gun violence is a fight between its police union and its city leaders. But this summer the fight is on - and it's a bitter one.  FULL STORY arrow
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A futile shouting match over the city's gun violence space
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By MARCUS GEE
Wednesday, July 11, 2018 – Page A9
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-- When Canadians look at the goings on south of the border, they are often appalled. American politics has become so polarized. Everything is being reduced to us and them, with him or against him, black and white. No one seems to pay the least attention to what the other side is saying. Each camp is convinced it has a monopoly on truth.  FULL STORY arrow
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Ontario takes 'Trumpian' tone on Toronto's migrant issues space
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, July 7, 2018 – Page A4
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-- Ontario's government has a sort of parental relationship to Toronto's. It is the senior level of authority and, as such, it has a responsibility to help the junior one in times of urgent need.  FULL STORY arrow
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A road map for transformation: What Toronto can learn from New York about fighting crime space
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By MARCUS GEE
Thursday, July 5, 2018 – Page A9
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-- In the worst years of New York's violentcrime wave, in the early 1990s, the city was seeing more than 2,000 murders a year. Last year, it had fewer than 300.  FULL STORY arrow
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The trouble with the black list space
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By MARCUS GEE
Wednesday, July 4, 2018 – Page A5
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-- Being aware of racial issues and on guard against racism is one thing, being fixated on race quite another. These days we seem to have drifted into an unhealthy fixation.  FULL STORY arrow
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CN TOWER OPENS TO THE PUBLIC space
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By MARCUS GEE
Tuesday, June 26, 2018 – Page A2
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-- The CN Tower was a triumph of engineering: rivers of concrete poured into a giant mould to fashion a heavens-piercing spire.  FULL STORY arrow
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Doug Ford is wrong to oppose Ontario's supervised drug-use sites space
With the province in the grip of an opioid crisis, what matters is saving lives
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By MARCUS GEE
Tuesday, June 19, 2018 – Page A9
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-- Doug Ford, the man soon to become Ontario's premier, has said he is ''dead against'' supervised drug-use sites for addicts. He is dead wrong to oppose them.Giving drug users a secure place to go means they are not injecting in doorways, stairwells and public washrooms. If they overdose, someone is there to help. That can make the difference between life and death.  FULL STORY arrow
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Cyclists and pedestrians are still being killed on the road - but change is coming space
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By MARCUS GEE
Thursday, June 14, 2018 – Page A15
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-- A rash of road deaths has awakened a feeling of alarm, almost despair, in Toronto. Jennifer Keesmaat, the city's high-profile former chief planner, said the deaths were ''unbearable'' and called for a state of emergency. The urban thinker Richard Florida deplored ''Toronto's killing fields'' and said the city's failure to deal with the problem felt a bit like Americans' failure to deal with guns. Mayor John Tory was ''devastated personally.'' He said he found it deeply troubling that so many pedestrians and cyclists have been killed this year.  FULL STORY arrow
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Maybe it's not quite the end of civilization space
Despite much anguish over Ford wielding the axe, Toronto will survive - and could even benefit
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, June 9, 2018 – Page A16
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-- Progressive Toronto is feeling traumatized by Doug Ford's election victory and it's easy to see why. Just look at the electoral map. Toronto is NDP orange, with a splash or two of Liberal red. Around it lies a sea of Tory blue.  FULL STORY arrow
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Hold on to your hats, Ontario: Expect a wild ride under Doug Ford space
The next premier should remember - but he won't - that many weren't voting for him, they merely wanted to get rid of Wynne & Co.
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By MARCUS GEE
Friday, June 8, 2018 – Page A9
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-- It was clear from the start of this roller-coaster election period that Ontario voters wanted change. Well, they got change all right.Rejecting the big-government liberalism of Kathleen Wynne, they ushered in the swampdraining populism of Doug Ford.  FULL STORY arrow
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Seven (lame) excuses for not voting space
Sure, there's good reason to be cynical, but your vote really does matter. Indeed, democracy is counting on you
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By MARCUS GEE
Thursday, June 7, 2018 – Page A11
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-- Ontario votes on Thursday - or at least some of it will. Only about half of registered voters bothered to cast a ballot in the last two provincial elections. Only a third of young people did.  FULL STORY arrow
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WHAT'S A VOTER TO DO? space
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By MARCUS GEE
Monday, June 4, 2018 – Page A8
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-- For many, the decision in Ontario this week has never been harder - but staying home is not an option.Marcus Gee looks at the messiness of democracy and the choices voters must make, for better or for worse.  FULL STORY arrow
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The new PC plan is far from a fully costed platform space
Back-of-the-napkin fiscal document simply restates all of Ford's promises
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By MARCUS GEE
Friday, June 1, 2018 – Page A9
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-- Doug Ford tried to pull a fast one on the voters of Ontario.  FULL STORY arrow
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Power failure: No party in Ontario's election has a plan to fix Hydro One space
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By MARCUS GEE
Wednesday, May 16, 2018 – Page A1
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-- Doug Ford supporters held a little protest Tuesday morning outside the annual general meeting of Hydro One, the giant Ontario power utility. They chanted slogans and waved handmade signs. Then the man himself emerged from a big black car to deliver his standard attack on Hydro executives for ''feathering their nest'' and ''gouging the taxpayers.''  FULL STORY arrow
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Voters face three poor options when it comes to Hydro One space
What Ontarians need is an intelligent plan to bring some sense to what should be a straightforward enterprise
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By MARCUS GEE
Wednesday, May 16, 2018 – Page A5
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-- Doug Ford supporters held a little protest Tuesday morning outside the annual general meeting of Hydro One, the giant Ontario power utility. They chanted slogans and waved handmade signs. Then the man himself emerged from a big black car to deliver his standard attack on Hydro executives for ''feathering their nest'' and ''gouging the taxpayers.''  FULL STORY arrow
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Tory Leader's plan for Toronto transit doesn't add up space
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By MARCUS GEE
Friday, May 11, 2018 – Page A12
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-- Many strap-hangers will like the sound of Doug Ford's transit plan. The Progressive Conservative Leader says that if he becomes premier after the June 7 election he will spend $5-billion more on transit projects around Ontario. He will cut red tape and get shovels in the ground.  FULL STORY arrow
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What on Earth is the responsible Ontario voter to do? space
Ontarians face a choice between the devil they know, an ill-informed blowhard and an unimpressive politician
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By MARCUS GEE
Wednesday, May 9, 2018 – Page A12
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-- Pity the voters of Ontario.They are to cast their ballots in a provincial election on June 7. Campaigning is to begin officially on Wednesday. The options before them are abysmal.  FULL STORY arrow
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Wynne is right: Ford is just a Canadian Trump space
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By MARCUS GEE
Friday, May 4, 2018 – Page A10
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-- When Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne said recently that Doug Ford was like Donald Trump, critics called it a desperate ploy to discredit her rival before next month's Ontario election. Maybe it is. It also happens to be true.  FULL STORY arrow
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Wynne is right: Ford is just a Canadian Trump space
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By MARCUS GEE
Thursday, May 3, 2018 – Page A10
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-- When Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne said recently that Doug Ford was like Donald Trump, critics called it a desperate ploy to discredit her rival before next month's Ontario election. Maybe it is. It also happens to be true.  FULL STORY arrow
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Another great migration is under way: Black Americans are leaving big cities for the suburbs space
Generations ago, Chicago was a Midwestern haven for black Southerners seeking a better life. Now, with crime rampant in the South Side and jobs scarce, thousands are fleeing the other way. Marcus Gee looks at what they're leaving behind
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By MARCUS GEE
Tuesday, May 1, 2018 – Page A10
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CHICAGO -- Aubry Crain is from a rough part of Chicago's South Side, the kind of place where ''if you hear a balloon pop, you duck.'' She says her nephew was gunned down in the street one winter day, his blood staining the snow.  FULL STORY arrow
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Let's not turn the city into a fortress space
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By MARCUS GEE
Thursday, April 26, 2018 – Page A11
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-- Shortly after the van attack in north Toronto this week, authorities placed big concrete barriers outside the Union Station transit hub downtown. A sensible precaution in the circumstances, you might say.  FULL STORY arrow
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A diverse community pulling together is in North York's DNA space
Stricken but determined not to succumb to fear, the residents of the Toronto neighbourhood salute the virtues and strengths of their thriving community
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By MARCUS GEE
Wednesday, April 25, 2018 – Page A11
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-- Aflorist offered free flowers for mourners to leave at a memorial wall. A family gave out bottles of water to passersby. A community group organized a vigil and walk. Christians and Muslims stood together under a placard that said ''Love for All, Hate for None.''  FULL STORY arrow
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Attack was a profound shock to the city space
Whatever the motive, the effect was an afternoon of chaos and terror
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By MARCUS GEE
Tuesday, April 24, 2018 – Page A11
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-- Shortly after the attack on Toronto's Yonge Street, a television camera caught the scene at the corner of Yonge and Finch.A group of bystanders stood behind a cordon of yellow police tape. No one was saying much.  FULL STORY arrow
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Let's not squander the chance to build density space
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By MARCUS GEE
Saturday, April 21, 2018 – Page A16
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-- One of the great mysteries about Toronto is why so little has been built along the Bloor-Danforth subway line.The line opened in 1966, with extensions in 1968 and 1980. Toronto has seen immense growth in the decades since. Buildings have shot up along the Yonge line, which opened in 1954 and has also been extended. Hubs such as Yonge and Eglinton and Yonge and Sheppard have thickets of tall buildings.  FULL STORY arrow
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Pity the children! A pot shop is opening up nearby space
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By MARCUS GEE
Thursday, April 19, 2018 – Page A6
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-- As the legalization of marijuana approaches, Canadians are suffering some anxiety about how it will all work. You might even call it a case of the fears. Just look at the fuss over the location of the first government pot shop in Toronto.  FULL STORY arrow
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How SmartTrack became a project that Tory now has to persuade voters even exists space
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By MARCUS GEE
Wednesday, April 18, 2018 – Page A10
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-- In the early years of Sesame Street, the creators of the kids show introduced a character named Mr. Snuffleupagus. He was a huge, hairy, shambling creature with a trunk like an elephant's. At first, only Big Bird could see him.  FULL STORY arrow
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Complete Index of Today's Print Headlines
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