Updates from July, 2022 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 12:43 on 2022-07-31 Permalink | Reply  

    A building downtown was the target of a firebomb Sunday morning, but the fire was quickly put out.

    • Kate 10:45 on 2022-07-31 Permalink | Reply  

      CTV has a biased piece about a woman bringing her broom to Notre-Dame-des-Neiges cemetery to tidy up one of the mausoleums. Buried in the story is the unwillingness of cemetery management to offer an acceptable new contract to its workers, although it mentions a claim that the cemetery has a $100-million deficit.

      Might the Sulpicians be making this claim to soften up public opinion before attempting to sell off some of the cemetery land? There are nice flat grassy fields along Côte-des-Neiges, without any graves, which could be seen as ripe for condo development.

      Meantime, I’m pretty sure my ancestors up there don’t mind a little high grass on their gravesites. They would be much more concerned about the fair remuneration of the cemetery’s workers.

      • Ephraim 12:27 on 2022-07-31 Permalink

        What do you do when you can’t afford your deficit… declare bankruptcy. Though, I wonder how you run up a $100M deficit. Boy, would I like to see those books.

        I was part of a union at one time and I nitpicked their budget so badly, asking questions about everything… really cleaned up the budget for the next year. Long distance charges when you are a Montreal only union? Photocopiers and fax machines in the 21st century? Airplane travel? These are a few of my favourite things.. to question 🙂

    • Kate 09:29 on 2022-07-31 Permalink | Reply  

      Nice Le Devoir piece on the value of Montreal’s 490 km of alleys, not just as green spaces (not all of them are) but as the place where kids can play safely and social behaviour becomes more informal.

      The writer’s observation that strangers who would never engage in conversation on the street will often greet each other and chat in the alley is exact. For example, I had a nice chat with a couple of older women just yesterday about the thicket of burdocks growing outside my back gate (discussion about the name of the plant, how I let it grow for the bees and butterflies, what they call it in Gaspésie…). I’d never seen them before.

      But I’m not sure the writer is exactly correct that the alleys originally only existed for garbage pickup. They also allowed for coal and ice deliveries – supplies we don’t need now, but which were crucial through the 19th and early 20th centuries. I don’t know whether milk was delivered to the back door or the front, though.

      • Hamza 15:30 on 2022-07-31 Permalink

        Now imagine if we went all the way and banned cars . Just the occasional bus on main thoroughfares, that’s it.

      • Kate 15:51 on 2022-07-31 Permalink

        There’s some noise Sunday on Twitter about the idea of banning cars in Old Montreal, or at least along de la Commune. I’ve always thought they should be banned from Notre‑Dame south to the river, if not from St‑Antoine.

      • DeWolf 18:08 on 2022-07-31 Permalink

        I think the best solution would be to get rid of all street parking below Notre-Dame. Keep local access for pick ups and drop offs, but that’s it. Install deviators to prevent through traffic and bollards to prevent illegal parking.

        Beyond the small pedestrianized area around Place Jacques-Cartier the presence of cars in Old Montreal is overwhelming. It makes it really unpleasant to walk around.

      • Kate 19:12 on 2022-07-31 Permalink

        Maybe allow motorized deliveries in the morning for restaurants and boutiques, but ban them after noon.

        Car-free streets would also allow for much better photo ops in that part of town.

      • mare 22:10 on 2022-07-31 Permalink

        A large percentage of car traffic in Old Montreal are drivers looking for parking.

        It looks and feels like Europe, let’s turn it into Europe. Do as they did in many old European city centres and remove all street parking (except for short term parking for the disabled here and there) and close it off with retractable bollards. Have a fleet of small, low speed busses (or those self-driving people movers they’re testing out on St-Hubert) cross the arteries for people who can’t walk that far. The bollards allow residents with private parking in their basements a maximum of x entrances per day. Access for delivery trucks between 06h00 and 9h00.
        Build public underground parking garages under every construction site and empty lot.
        Etc etc. (One can dream…)

      • Kate 12:16 on 2022-08-01 Permalink

        mare, a large piece of old Quebec City has a huge parking lot under it. I don’t know when it was excavated and built, but it does make it easier for people to arrive, stash their vehicle, walk around at will, and then reclaim their wheels and leave.

        I realize it would be a lot more complex to build something like this in Old Montreal, and the geology of the area might not even allow for it, but it’s striking how well it works in Quebec.

    • Kate 09:17 on 2022-07-31 Permalink | Reply  

      On Saturday, La Presse unaccountably published an opinion piece from a climate denier at the right-wing Montreal Economic Institute (IEDM).

      La Presse is our most reliable paper on most issues, so this decision has made a lot of people unhappy. André Noël, who used to be on staff there, dissects how the IEDM is supported (oil money, in a phrase) and condemns the choice.

      J’imagine que les médias publient ces inepties au nom de la diversité des opinions. Mais on oublie que leur premier rôle, c’est de chercher et de dire la vérité. Les opinions ne doivent pas aller à l’encontre des faits.

      • Jorgh 10:57 on 2022-07-31 Permalink

        Geloso’s “opinion” is a rich one… heat waves are going to kill people, but not as many as they could without tech (and economic growth…). It’s the “die for the economy” opinion, again, on the gamble that society will not collapse. 2.5 years into the pandemic, and we are still dealing with repercussions from that shock to the system, and things are not coming “back to normal” anytime soon (they never will, partially because the pandemic ain’t over). At this point, if we stopped emitting CO2 tomorrow for good, climate change wouldn’t go away *for decades*, and the system is not made to sustain the heat waves, or the rise is sea level, the extreme precipitation etc… Advances in tech and a “growing economy” won’t fix any of that.

      • Nathaniel Herz 10:07 on 2022-08-01 Permalink

        The term climate denier probably needs an update. People like this writer are in the business of climate change harm minimization. He’s certainly right that heat waves are a lot less deadly than they used to be and will probably become even less deadly in the future, despite heat waves becoming more frequent and intense. That this isn’t equivalent to the green revolution that blunted the effects of population growth, though, is clear, since the major threats from climate change: sea-level rise, increased droughts and flooding, and most especially ecological damage, have no simple technological remedies and none are on the horizon.

      • Kate 11:17 on 2022-08-01 Permalink

        > He’s certainly right that heat waves are a lot less deadly than they used to be

        Where are we talking about? Recent highs over 40°C in Europe and India can’t possibly have been less deadly than heat waves used to be.

    • Kate 20:32 on 2022-07-30 Permalink | Reply  

      The Journal went backstage, so to speak, at the SPVM firearms unit, where they analyze guns that have been used or seized, do ballistic studies, fingerprints, all that CSI stuff.

      I spotted this story because the mayor thanked them on Twitter.

      • mare 22:44 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

        TIL that rifles are too long for ♻️ wheelie bins. (header photo)

      • Blork 18:48 on 2022-07-31 Permalink

        Some rifles don’t fit. That really odd looking one fits. It’s an Israeli-made Tavor TAR-21, which is an assault rifle used by the IDF and is designed to be short, for close-quarters combat. WTF is someone doing in Montreal with a TAR-21? (Picture farther down also shows an Israeli Uzi, but those were super popular in the 90s, so everybody wanted one.)

    • Kate 19:57 on 2022-07-30 Permalink | Reply  

      The driving issues only got posted Saturday midday this weekend.

      • Kate 09:38 on 2022-07-30 Permalink | Reply  

        Denis Coderre met the Pope and gave him a copy of his book.

        • Ephraim 11:07 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

          Will they use it to make the smoke for the next pope… because ain’t no one reading that tome

        • dhomas 12:57 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

          I’m with PierreB Fortin on this one. Why does he even get to meet the pope? He’s just a regular civilian at this point. Also, why would the pope care about a book called “Retrouver Montréal”?

        • Mark 13:13 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

          I’m assuming he was able to meet him because he is in charge of raising money for his visit?

          For fun, I visited the printers of “Retrouver Montreal”, and they offer a preview of the first 30 pages or so. The preamble (that he wrote) is a narcissistic rambling piece where 75% of the sentences start with or include “je”. The man is a walking billboard for himself.

        • Kate 14:01 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

          In other Pope items that I found amusing: Gilles Proulx works himself into a snit over Gabriel Nadeau‑Dubois’ choice not to attend the Pope’s mass.

          I haven’t been doing a lot of Pope links this week, and other things have been quiet. I recognize that the visit has been important to many, given his attempt to atone for wrongs meted out to Indigenous people, but that’s a huge topic that goes beyond this blog’s purview.

        • EmilyG 14:53 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

          Typical of Denny. He thinks he’s a bigshot.

        • MarcG 16:21 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

          He really is a caricature of himself.

        • Uatu 17:32 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

          Someone please tell Gilles Proulx that QC is a secular society. I mean they passed a bill recently didn’t they? :p

        • Kevin 21:11 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

          Gilles is upset because society has left him in the dust and the turnout for the Pope was smaller than an opening act at Osheaga.

        • qatzelok 22:32 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

          The Pope should have been arrested for all the damage that his terror organization has done to people on this continent. Then, all the Roman Catholic lands in Canada should be ceded to First Nations and any land income transfered to them.

          Finally, Denis Coderre should become the next pope, a kind of “Donald Trump pope” to finish off the organization’s reputation.

          (constructive criticism)

        • Ephraim 07:50 on 2022-07-31 Permalink

          Two words… diplomatic immunity

        • Kate 09:49 on 2022-07-31 Permalink

          qatzelok, you’re nuts.

      • Kate 08:57 on 2022-07-30 Permalink | Reply  

        Some trainee nurses are making their observations of the hospital mistreatment of Indigenous patients public.

        • Kate 08:48 on 2022-07-30 Permalink | Reply  

          Two teenagers were found stabbed in a Hochelaga playground Friday night and, in an unrelated incident, a man in Maisonneuve was stabbed by two assailants who fled.

          • Kate 09:47 on 2022-07-29 Permalink | Reply  

            A new tenants’ union is trying to act when the toothless Tribunal du logement does not.

            • Ephraim 13:54 on 2022-07-29 Permalink

              Well, it’s a good way to ensure that no one wants to rent apartment to anyone anymore. The problem with these kinds of things is that they never seems to be any balance. You have to offer the landlords SOMETHING in return… their heating has gone up, their electric has gone up, the maintenance has gone up, the mortgage has gone up… they too have bills to pay. This also is not making a difference between mom and pop landlords and corporate landlords. And even then, not all corporate landlords are bad ones. Not everyone is a Shiller.

            • Ian 16:24 on 2022-07-29 Permalink

              I pay my own electricity and heating, and my landlord inherited the building – there hasn’t been a mortgage since the 80s. Should my rent be lower than a tenant that is paying their landlord’s mortgage? Because it isn’t… we all pay market rate unless we don’t move and don’t get renovicted.

              If your landlord finishes paying their mortgage, should your rent go down? It doesn’t, of course. Conversely if the mortgage goes up, why should your rent?

              There’s a reason rents have doubled in Mile End over 10 years, and it’s not because costs doubled.

            • Ephraim 16:51 on 2022-07-29 Permalink

              There will always be market factors. There are two people in the equation. CPI went from 122.3 to 145.6 in the last 10 years. But the question isn’t really CPI… it’s what would that money bring elsewhere. The TSX for Jan 2011 – 13443 and for Jan 2021 – 21222.

              No calculating… $1000 in rent then by CPI should be $1190.50 today. But by TSX, that $1000 would be worth $1578.66

              The problem is that of course the value of the home has gone up too. But people don’t see that. Also, we don’t know what the outlays have been for maintenance, nuisance, administration, etc. But basically who would invest in property if your return went up only 19% in 10 years, when you could have had 57.86% in 10 years.

            • MarcG 17:06 on 2022-07-29 Permalink

              @Ephraim: It sounds to me like you’re arguing that people’s homes shouldn’t be treated as business investments.

            • MarcG 17:12 on 2022-07-29 Permalink

              Same problem applies to food, education, healthcare and anything else that people need to live: it’s unethical to subject it to the whims of the marketplace.

            • Ephraim 18:39 on 2022-07-29 Permalink

              @MarcG – I’ve never been a landlord, as such. My parents were… and they hated every minute of it. From the tenant opening windows in the winter, the tenants running out on them and not paying their rent and to the phone calls at 11PM to plunge their toilet. The next house… they looked for a bungalow, to never have a tenant again.

              Personally, I have no opinion on the subject really. I just expect that a landlord is going to want the kind of return they would get if they bought a stock index fund, at a minimum. I mean why bother with all that work if you could just buy HBAL or ZBAL and have none of the hassle.

            • steph 06:59 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

              The point of a tenants advocacy group is to protect tenants and their rights. I’ve been loved and hated by different landlords. The landlords that loved me, loved me because I played by the rules. The landlords that hated me, hated me because I played by the rules.

            • Ephraim 07:43 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

              @steph – This particular tenancy group is asking for two unrealistic demands: a total moratorium on rents, including not paying rents for at least 3 months (with no discussion on how landlords are supposed to pay their bills). An extension of leases until the end of September (obviously with no concern to the many factors involved, including that their children will have to be registered in the wrong school)

              If this was simply about rights, it wouldn’t be a discussion at all. And my problem with these kind of things is that you need to open with something that is reasonable… not paying rents and extending leases without regards to their effect on the mom and pop landlords is playing havoc with their lives as well.

            • Kate 09:08 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

              Ephraim, they have to make pushy demands, because they’re going to get nowhere if their only demand is for the Quebec government to defend the rights that tenants already have (in theory) but lost a long time ago in practicality.

            • Ephraim 11:11 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

              @Kate – That doesn’t work. When you start with unreasonable… every just labels you a kook/nutter and never talks to you. You have to give people room to negotiate. With those demands… no one is going to even sit down with them… they have just been written off as nutters… it’s the equivalent of a troll… no point of even replying

            • Blork 11:48 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

              That SALM manifesto is from March 2020 and their most recent blog post is from May 2020. Are they even still active or is this just a burst of activity from 2+ years ago that has since fizzled out?

            • MarcG 12:17 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

              They are active on Instagram and held a demo at Cogir HQ in June https://www.instagram.com/slam.matu/

            • Blork 13:07 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

              The manifesto in Kate’s link is from a group called SALM (Syndicat Autonome des Locataires de Montréal). The Instagram link is from a group called SLAM (Syndicat de Locataires Autonome de Montréal). Are they even the same group?

            • MarcG 14:11 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

              I don’t believe they are.

            • Blork 14:56 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

              Smash that blork.org subscribe button for more Montreal news fact checking.

            • MarcG 16:20 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

              Is the link in the article (I don’t see it) or is that an error of Kate’s?

            • Kate 16:22 on 2022-07-30 Permalink

              The article shows a photo of a poster from SLAM.MATU. I clearly linked to the wrong group earlier, sorry.

          • Kate 09:25 on 2022-07-29 Permalink | Reply  

            A house was hit by lightning Thursday in Beaconsfield and was destroyed by the ensuing fire.

            Afterthought: Does this count as an “act of God” in insurance terms?

            • Blork 10:14 on 2022-07-29 Permalink

              Weird. Same thing happened in Longueuil yesterday. I don’t have a link because I saw it on FB in the Longueuil FB group.

            • mare 12:36 on 2022-07-29 Permalink

              You’d think that if you owned an expensive house made of tinder sticks you’d install a lightning rod.
              (With so many trees around it, it seems unlikely the house itself will get hit, but a tree is a much better insulator than a wet house. And highly unlikely is not *never*, and that’s why fools still play the lottery.)

          • Kate 09:20 on 2022-07-29 Permalink | Reply  

            The city’s taxi bureau is closing at the end of the year, putting 38 people out of work. If this article is correct, it’s because the province has taken over all the authority.

            • Blork 10:15 on 2022-07-29 Permalink

              Future historians will use that as an example of “going from bad to worse.”

          • Kate 09:10 on 2022-07-29 Permalink | Reply  

            Police are looking for victims of somebody in the Plateau who’s been shooting at cyclists wth an air gun near the Parc du Portugal on the Main.

            • Kate 09:06 on 2022-07-29 Permalink | Reply  

              Mel Hoppenheim, who built cinema studios here and later helped Concordia create its film school, has died at 84.

              • Kate 21:45 on 2022-07-28 Permalink | Reply  

                A second death has been counted in the shooting overnight in Montreal West. The victims in the car were only aged 17 and 18; a third passenger fled unhurt. This makes homicides #14 and #15 this year.

                Statistical anomaly: of the 15 homicides, 14 were of men (or boys).

                • Leagle 06:15 on 2022-07-29 Permalink

                  That’s no anomaly. Looking at yearly murder statistics for Montreal, you’ll note that murders of women and girls are very rare overall.

                • Kate 09:01 on 2022-07-29 Permalink

                  By this time last year, there were six murders of women.

                • saintjacques 12:09 on 2022-07-29 Permalink

                  Since 2014 through 2020, there were roughly 3 male homicides for every female homicide in Canada, according to Statistics Canada (4,508 total homicides; 3,344 male victims and 1,153 female victims). I imagine that the ratio for Quebec (or Montreal, for that matter) probably does not deviate significantly from the national rate. So an assertion that murders of girls and women are “very rare overall” really stretches the definition of “very rare.”

                  As an analogue, consider flipping a coin four times and the final tally is three heads and one tail. I can’t imagine too many people would say that result is “very rare.”

                • Leagle 17:17 on 2022-07-29 Permalink

                  Certainly not “very rare”, but comparatively rare, thankfully.

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