Weekend Newsstand: July 23, 2011
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Weekend Newsstand: July 23, 2011

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Illustration by Kyra Kendall/Torontoist.


It’s Saturday, so get ready for a Saturday News Tornado! It’s a twisted-up twister storm of Saturday and news! Obsessive council-watching is a GTA passtime, you’ve got RoFo’s ear for five minutes, good guy Gary Webster may be one expensive dude to get rid of, and let a few more visual perspectives into your life, whydontchya?

Big Brother may not be watching, but Small Citizen is: the National Post reports that municipal council-watching is a popular pastime across the GTA (statistics report that the activity is more popular than birdwatching and paint-drying-watching, and very nearly as popular as naked-neighbour-watching). Citizens not only in Toronto but in Mississauga, Vaughan, and Aurora have taken on the responsibility of self-appointed watchdoggery. While political scientists speaking to the growth of this cottage industry say that the often radical views and conspiracy theories can be alienating to ordinary citizens, council-watchers’ actions have also been known to give rise to needed audits and inquiries.
Speaking of watching municipal politicians, didjya catch the mayor on the boob tube yesterday? In his lunch-time CP24 interview yesterday, Rob Ford issued an invitation to all the citizens of all the land to come down to his court next week for the opportunity to tell him what they think of proposed spending cuts. “Everyone has five minutes . . . I don’t care if we have to sit there for three days,” Ford said. Feel free to correct our math skillz here (you’ve caught this newsstander out in her counting-on-the-fingers errors before, you diligent readers, you), but if the full population of Toronto (2,503,281 according to Wikipedia) take RoFo up on his offer, then he could have 8,692 days of feedback to contend with, which is a little more than 23 years. By that time, we the people could have grown a whole new generation of hoverboard-riding pinkos. Citizens of Toronto, go forth and seize your five minutes! That’s Thursday at City Hall starting at 9:30 a.m., by the by.
As we told you yesterday, rumour has it that Ro and Do of team Fo are on a mission to oust TTC chief Gary Webster over his refusal to join their team of lackeys supporting the Sheppard subway extension. Today, councillors who sit on the TTC are speaking out in favour of Webster. The Toronto Star reports that it could cost anywhere from $600,000 to $1.5 million to shove Webster into retirement before his contract expires in 2013.
There’s no good segue for this one: has your life been plodding along in those same ole’ three dimensions, dominated by a single visual stance? Well don’t you worry your pretty, normative head about it ’cause a reprieve is coming your way, with the AGO bringing in a major exhibition of the works of Pablo Picasso in summer 2012. So you might have to wait a year, but don’t worry: you’ll get a little perspective soon enough.

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