Updates from March, 2017 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 13:12 on 2017/03/31 Permalink | Reply  

    Police chief Philippe Pichet has presented his plans to reform the police force and change its internal culture, but – as others have also noted – the title of the thing, “pour rassurer et améliorer le lien de confiance des citoyens envers le SPVM” – smacks more of a public relations strategy.

    • d 07:53 on 2017/04/01 Permalink

      I’ve heard stories from the police academy that the people who are in the program have serious attitude problems, and often people with integrity usually just drop the program because they can’t stand the other people in the program. It would seem, this is would be a good place to start to have reform. I’d love to hear first hand accounts.

    • Kevin 10:28 on 2017/04/01 Permalink

      In Cegep my locker was next to Police Tech students.
      I would be hard pressed to assemble an equivalent collection of morons and petty criminals.
      They once spent two hours debating which was greater: the number of weeks in a year, or the number of cards in a standard deck. They eventually decided that both were the same number.


    • Ephraim 16:10 on 2017/04/01 Permalink

      Put real civilian oversight, real punishments and the attitude that any and all of this will be sent to the civilian oversight to decide how to proceed. The clear idea that you are going to get caught for violating the law or police ethics, you are going to get punished and the police can’t protect you because it’s civilian oversight. That should clear things up quickly. And any chief that isn’t reporting through everything has got to go. And if we have to bring in a chief from outside of the local system to clean in up. And a phone line to the civilian oversight that allows anonymous tips that MUST be followed up.

  • Kate 13:08 on 2017/03/31 Permalink | Reply  

    TSN talked to Mitch Garber about Montreal’s baseball plans.

    I think I know what all this is about. Denis Coderre will inevitably be re-elected this fall, but he knows it would clinch it beyond doubt if he went into his second term as The Man Who Brought the Expos Back.

    It makes me sick that the city is concentrating on going back to the 20th century, but if it’s the circus the people want, it’s the circus they will get. Even if it gives Montreal a deficit like Quebec City’s over the Centre Videotron.

    • Phil C. 13:32 on 2017/03/31 Permalink

      How are they going to use the word “teamwork” and “private” in the same sentence. We will be giving our hard earned money and prime land away, so a private company can do what they please. The results are never ideal. Hardly “teamwork”

      Since we’re apparently going to embrace and enable this pattern of last minute gift giving for reelection, can we at least be persuaded with useful gifts. A public transit grocery list comes to mind, and a billion dollars is a nice start

    • Tim S. 17:04 on 2017/03/31 Permalink

      I keep trying to tell every Project person I come across to make the next election a referendum on spending a billion dollars on the Expos. Instead, pitbulls…

    • ant6n 17:21 on 2017/03/31 Permalink

      As a pre-election year strategy the pit bulls make sense. Get all the support from some very strong feeling group a year ahead of the election. Then in the election year, move to bigger picture topics but keep the support of the dog people.

    • Kate 19:55 on 2017/03/31 Permalink

      Tim S., that’s a great idea. I wonder if Projet would risk the loss of populist popularity such a position would involve.

    • ant6n 09:11 on 2017/04/01 Permalink

      “Denis Coderre will inevitably be re-elected this fall”
      Don’t jinx it

    • Kevin 10:34 on 2017/04/01 Permalink

      Both expos and pit bull supporters are vocal groups, with far fewer numbers in Montreal than you would think.

      I was digging into pit bull supporters last year. Most denouncing BSL on several forums did not live in Quebec.

    • Tim S. 10:52 on 2017/04/01 Permalink

      Kate, there are no doubt some enthusiastic Expos fans, and some people who simply think it’s cool, but I would hope that given all the money it’ll cost, “let’s not spend our tax dollars on American millionaires” would be the populist position.

    • Kate 11:11 on 2017/04/01 Permalink

      Tim S., it has to be presented in stark numbers. If you want a team, you will have to accept higher taxes, slower development of public transit, more leisurely response to infrastructure problems, less money for culture and the other services offered by the city. We can’t have everything, and if what the population really wants is American millionaires throwing a ball around in a new stadium (and we’re great at pricing those out!), that is what they will get.

    • Chris 11:44 on 2017/04/01 Permalink

      If we reelect mayor Flintstone, we deserve it. :(

    • Kate 12:02 on 2017/04/01 Permalink

      We will. It only remains to be seen how much of an opposition can be mustered at city hall. With people like Réal Ménard and Richard Bergeron having thrown in with Coderre since 2013, I don’t have strong hopes in this area.

  • Kate 09:06 on 2017/03/31 Permalink | Reply  

    TVA has notes on weekend road closures. The Jacques-Cartier is closed overnight Friday to Saturday.

    Closures on the 15 are coming after the weekend.

  • Kate 02:02 on 2017/03/31 Permalink | Reply  

    Kristian Gravenor looks back at the gruesome litany of murders this city saw in 1977 – 91 murders that year, compared with 23 in 2016.

    Anyone around you shakes their head at the terrible times we live in, or lauds the good old days: this.

    • JaneyB 08:57 on 2017/03/31 Permalink

      I remember when I was a kid, Montreal was The Big City, even out west. We never heard about Toronto on the national news. Always volatile and chaotic with reports of seedy murders and truly massive labour strife, and the cultural centre for the whole country, Montreal was It. A little earlier there were the hundreds (!) of FLQ bombings (see: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_the_Front_de_libération_du_Québec). As you say, these days are like a walk in the park. We live in a boutique, by comparison!

  • Kate 01:53 on 2017/03/31 Permalink | Reply  

    No surprise here: Ville-Marie is the most expensive borough in terms of shelter.

  • Kate 17:48 on 2017/03/30 Permalink | Reply  

    The city having failed to come up with alternative services, the SPCA will extend its presence in several boroughs.

    In addition, the Plateau has signed a separate deal with the SPCA.

  • Kate 17:10 on 2017/03/30 Permalink | Reply  

    I’ll be working for the St-Laurent byelection Monday. Thursday was the training session and I ended up afterwards at Côte-Vertu metro station with an hour or so to kill, and needing to eat.

    I had blithely assumed the busy CV-Decarie corner would feature an Amir or Basha, but no such luck. I went into a little computer shop to buy an iPhone cable, and asked the man there where I could get a shish taouk nearby.

    He had no idea. I found this hard to believe by the evidence of my eyes but eventually he said “Saboui. Just at the corner.”

    Saboui? I set off and a moment later was laughing. A Subway is on the corner there.

    Eventually I ate at an okay Vietnamese place, then sought out espresso. I am in a place called Melting Pot Cafe. When I came in I asked if they had espresso. Real espresso? Yes, she said. I gave her $3.45 and as I watched she placed a capsule into a machine.

    I told her this wasn’t real espresso but she disagreed. Needed the hit too much to ask for my money back. I don’t care if you use capsules in your home (your degraded hovel of a home) but please, don’t try to pass it off on me for money.

    • Kevin 17:31 on 2017/03/30 Permalink

      Add that to the list of questions to never ask salespeople.

    • rue david 17:40 on 2017/03/30 Permalink

      there’s a good taiwanese restaurant up there, maison mignon (could have sworn the name was different buy yelp tells me that’s it and it looks identical), the beef noodle soup is a great winter lunch option. i don’t think they’re likely to do a decent espresso though.

      you also have that senegalese restaurant right on decarie – i’ve never tried but i lived in france for a while and became addicted to the yassa at this one senegalese joint. man, so good. there, again, i’d not bet on a great espresso.

    • denpanosekai 19:07 on 2017/03/30 Permalink

      Decarie hot dog!!!!!

    • Brett 19:09 on 2017/03/30 Permalink

      You didn’t find the Van Houtte when you wanted coffee?
      Also, I’d say the restaurants there are generally low quality because the majority of the clientele comes from the nearby Cegeps. I’d like to try the Rasputin restaurant sometime though.

    • jeather 21:00 on 2017/03/30 Permalink

      The dumpling place down the block, Yi Pin, is good. And I feel like Choco Max sells real espresso.

    • Kate 01:47 on 2017/03/31 Permalink

      denpanosekai: had I been on my way home I’d’ve indulged in some poutine at Decarie Hot Dog, but I needed to stay awake till, well, now, and I find poutine slows me way down.

      jeather: I don’t expect to spend much time around there, but thanks for the recommendations.

      Brett: I saw no Van Houtte. Hm.

    • JaneyB 08:44 on 2017/03/31 Permalink

      I only know that strip a tiny bit but should you be feeling hungry after the polls close on Monday, here’s a helpful go-to resto list by some local food maniacs: https://endlessbanquet.squarespace.com/blog/2014/9/30/the-list-a-m

      I think someone mapped all the places for handiness but I can’t find it…

    • Kate 09:07 on 2017/03/31 Permalink

      Thanks, JaneyB. I’ll be finishing at 9:30 pm after 13 hours without a meal break, so you never know.

    • Poutine Pundit 01:21 on 2017/04/01 Permalink

      Ban Lao Thai is really good, close to Cote Vertu, especially if you go for the Laotian menu.

      Yi Pin Xiang also decent for northeastern Chinese dumplings, different from what you get elsewhere around town.

      No decent coffee up there, as far as I know. There’s an Italian coffee place called Dolci Piu that looks like it might be good, but don’t be fooled: it’s appalling.

  • Kate 16:23 on 2017/03/30 Permalink | Reply  

    Michael Applebaum was sentenced Thursday to one year in prison and probation to follow.

    • ant6n 17:48 on 2017/03/30 Permalink

      Now we could use a good rant about Canadian justice being “too soft”.

    • Chris 20:51 on 2017/03/30 Permalink

      At least he’ll be in jail.

    • Kate 21:57 on 2017/03/30 Permalink

      For an exemplary month or two.

    • Tim S. 22:41 on 2017/03/30 Permalink

      “exemplary month or two.” I remember that when one of the sponsorship scandal players had a sentence reduced or was released early, one of the mitigating factors the judge cited was that he had a job to go to. I sorta thought at the time that if the crime you committed was through your job, having a job to go back to should hardly count in your favour. Anyways, when Applebaum is invariably released early, let’s keep an eye on the justification.

  • Kate 10:57 on 2017/03/30 Permalink | Reply  

    Turned down for excursions from prison, Valery Fabrikant appealed to the Supreme Court to have his legal fees paid, but they have also turned him down. Fabrikant is regarded as still potentially dangerous: commenters here who have implied Canadian justice is too soft on offenders take note.

    • Bill Binns 12:22 on 2017/03/30 Permalink

      Still too soft. Fabrikant is his own worst enemy and never turns down an opportunity to remind everyone he is crazy and unhinged. If he played the game and said all the right things he probably would have inherited Guy Turcotte’s old bicycle by now or even been handed a couple of prescriptions and set free like Vince Li.

    • Taylor C. Noakes 15:31 on 2017/03/30 Permalink

      @Bill – legally speaking, Fabrikant isn’t insane and was never considered NCR.

      Vince Li was determined to be NCR from day one; the prosecutor (i.e. the Crown) did not appeal that decision.

      Stop lumping all mentally ill people together and demonizing them. It’s not helpful.

    • Kate 12:22 on 2017/03/31 Permalink

      Bill Binns, what else do you want them to do to Fabrikant? You’re beginning to remind me of an elderly relative who wanted them to bring back the lash.

    • Bill Binns 13:21 on 2017/03/31 Permalink

      @Kate – I’m fine with Fabrikant’s current situation. I’m just saying that he is not necessarily a great example of the revolving door of Canadian justice getting tough when the situation calls for it. Somebody else who committed his crime but had enough sense to find Jesus or write a children’s book while in jail would likely be enjoying leisurely bike rides through the park on a regular basis by now. His behavior prevents even the most progressive of officials from taking a chance on giving him privileges.

      This bring back the lash idea is intriguing. Does your relative have a petition I can sign? ;-)

    • ant6n 14:42 on 2017/03/31 Permalink

      “The exception [that] proves the rule”

    • CE 20:09 on 2017/03/31 Permalink

      @Bill: Do you have any examples of someone who wasn’t NCR who killed and wounded multiple people in Canada and then found themselves riding their bikes around the park 20 years later?

    • Kate 20:36 on 2017/03/31 Permalink

      Bill Binns: the point is still potentially dangerous. Fabrikant has never ceased to blame others for “making him do what he did” as narcissist personalities are apt to frame it. The parole board looks for signs that a person accepts responsibility for their act and has processed some of the feelings involved. They’ll never get that from old Valery.

      I don’t think it’s useful to see Fabrikant and Li as remotely similar. Fabrikant’s motives are understandable to a sane person. He felt that credit for his work was being stolen by others. He had been kvetching about this on Concordia mailing lists for years. Later it was acknowledged by Concordia that he was at least partly correct about this, and they made some changes in how papers were credited.

      Even so, ultimately Fabrikant went off the deep end and simply lashed out, shooting anyone he found in the department that day. None of the individuals he had blamed were there: he missed his target completely. Had I been Fabrikant’s lawyer, I might’ve tried for NCR based on this loss of control. But Fabrikant sacked lawyer after lawyer, presumably because nobody wanted to plead his case according to his ideas.

      Vince Li was in deep psychosis when he killed Tim McLean. Witnesses said the two men hadn’t so much as exchanged a word. It wasn’t an escalated quarrel. Li fixated on a random person with the ill luck to be nearby when he fully cracked, and killed him horribly. I am not a student of psychology and can’t tell you whether someone remains chronically prone to this kind of psychotic break, but Li was not a bad man, not a warped bitter guy with a personality disorder like Fabrikant: he was a deeply sick man, it’s obvious from the story line. But things I’ve read suggest Li now does recognize that he killed someone and that this guilt will never leave him, even if he can no longer recall the state of mind that made him do it. I’ve never read anything suggesting Li blames anyone else for his act.

  • Kate 10:31 on 2017/03/30 Permalink | Reply  

    Laurent Blanchard, retired from politics after serving briefly as interim mayor in 2013, gives his thoughts on Denis Coderre: “Lorsqu’on est maire, ce ne sont pas nos fantasmes qui doivent nous guider, mais le bien commun. Avec lui, le bien personnel et le bien commun se confondent parfois.”

  • Kate 10:25 on 2017/03/30 Permalink | Reply  

    More than a thousand trees have been cut down on St Helen’s Island to pave it over and build an amphitheatre for Evenko and nobody has taken any serious notice.

    One side effect of all the construction is that the aquatic complex – built and sustained by large chunks of public money – will be unusable this summer and possibly next summer because of noise and dust from the construction. That gives a sense of the scale of the project.

    • JaneyB 08:48 on 2017/03/31 Permalink

      Unbelieveable! I thought that Evenko evilness had been stalled into oblivion. Outrageous. And the baseball nonsense is on the horizon….

  • Kate 10:08 on 2017/03/30 Permalink | Reply  

    The city is pondering ways of reducing the bill for traffic direction around construction and roadwork sites, including possibly resorting to private firms for manpower. This follows a fait accompli in which they sacked 51 of their own security guards, who looked after various municipal properties around town, and replaced them with workers from private firms.

  • Kate 10:04 on 2017/03/30 Permalink | Reply  

    Do not stow your shovels yet. Environment Canada warns of 5-10 cm of snow starting Friday.

  • Kate 01:38 on 2017/03/30 Permalink | Reply  

    The city wants the power to shut down massage parlours.

    • ant6n 08:42 on 2017/03/30 Permalink

      More Drapeau-style politics.

  • Kate 01:36 on 2017/03/30 Permalink | Reply  

    The Shield of Athena women’s shelter had its van stolen last week, but has received a brand new vehicle via a donation from Avon Canada.

    • Michael Black 08:25 on 2017/03/30 Permalink

      The Native Women’s Shelter of Montreal was fundraising for a new van last February, they hadn’t had a van for a year. But I don’t see anything on their website about whether they got a new van or not.


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