Does anyone else get the hook from R.E.M.'s "Everybody Hurts" stuck in their head when they're in physical pain? Just me? Now this headache is lonely as well as painful. In today's news: Toronto is almost the most reputable city in the world, according to reputation experts the Reputation Institute; the stock exchange closed high, which means SELL EVERYTHING YOU OWN; Feral Cat Awareness Week is happening, so be aware that there are adorable sad cats that you should never touch without a trained expert nearby; and Premier Wynne is concerned about how the Canada-EU trade deal will impact Ontario.
The vaguely (and ominously?) named Reputation Institute has released its list of the 100 most reputable cities, and Toronto scored second place. Vancouver, which was in the number one spot, fell to 14th. The cities were judged on 13 categories, the heaviest weighted of which were safety and beauty. Toronto came in first in a few categories, including best city to work in and most improved reputation. The most reputable city in the world this year is Sydney, Australia. Does the Reputation Institute just really like shirtless surfers? Do I know any real information about Sydney, Australia? It would seem I do not!
The Toronto stock market closed at a two-year high on Friday “following strong economic data from China and solid earnings reports from General Electric, Morgan Stanley and Google.” A different country and three companies not based in Canada, let alone Toronto, swayed the Toronto stock exchange? It just goes to show that no matter how much you read about economics, it will never, ever make sense. Globalization is confusing, y’all. Another important factor in the markets’ strong performance was probably the huge sigh of relief everyone, but especially business, has been letting out since the U.S. averted default (kinda-sorta) for a few months, at least.
It’s the end of the inaugural Feral Cat Awareness Week, so be aware of those cats—the feral ones fighting and dying in the alley, not the cute ones with the collar who almost let you pet them. Because guess what, jerks? Toronto Feral Cat Project director Valerie De Grandis says “the issue of feral cats in Toronto is one we created” by abandoning or losing cat babies we let our unspayed, unneutered cats get pregnant with. They hang out with each other and then they reproduce, as is a creature’s wont. The end result is feral cat colonies roaming the streets, and that sounds terrifying. But the city has a trap-neuter-release program for feral cats that operates out of a free spay-neuter clinic specifically for feral cats, and if you want to get involved you can adopt a feral cat or sign up to be a “colony caretaker.” Caretakers provide food, water, and shelter in the winter to a sterilized colony until it “disappears through attrition” (dies).
Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne won’t block the possible trade deal between Canada and the European Union, and supports the deal in general though she has some concerns about it. The federal government is “committed to compensating the dairy sector” if the deal affects their business, which is usually code for the kind of crony capitalism that makes free trade deals so much more pernicious than they already (typically) are. The deal seems to include patent extensions for name-brand pharmaceuticals, which is another measure that benefits the already wealthy at the expense of lowly poors. But the federal government has promised to soften that blow as well; why not just, say, not extend those patents? In any case, the deal still has to be finalized and then approved by all 10 provinces as well as all 28 EU members, so it won’t have any effect for a while.