Friday, October 4, 2013

(Almost) Free Parking in Hamilton

The expenses of those organizing the Pan American Games in Toronto in 2015 has been coming under critical scrutiny. The accusation has been made that the CEO of TO2015, who is paid what by most standards would be considered a generous salary, included on his expense account a charge of 91 cents for parking. A further story revealed that this expense was incurred while on a visit to Hamilton. There is an obvious problem here. There is definitely something wrong here that needs to be investigated. I mean, where on earth did he find a parking space for only  91 cents - even in Hamilton? 

Saturday, December 17, 2011

A Lame Excuse?

It must be hard to keep a straight face when the best that you can say about your client's conduct is that he has had trouble adjusting to life outside prison and that the stress caused him to make bad choices. Well, at least the pressure is off him for another month or so!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

The Sign of an Advanced Culture?

Is it really a mark of our sophistication that we in Hamilton need a 50 page booklet to instruct us as to how to deliver our weekly trash and recycling to the curb? Is the process so complicated or the populace so dim? Will it really make a difference? Has the problem been solved? Or, is this Hamilton's response to the need to create more jobs in our community?

I have read it through and I would certainly hesitate to say that I am now 50 pages worth better informed. But it did keep me occupied for 20 minutes or so. And at least I wasn't loitering on some downtown street corner or, heaven forbid, trying to busk by playing my harmonica outside our city market.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Devious Language

It was interesting to hear one of the spokespersons for a G20 protest group speaking about the potential for property damage as a consequence of their protest. He said that property destruction, or, as some choose to call it "property modification," can happen anytime. How convenient! Rather like describing looting as "property liberation." There is no shortage of mischievous or even malicious nonsense in all of this.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Ugly Clutter

Who are the people who clutter every hydro pole and traffic island in Hamilton with signs for house painting, carpet cleaning, exercise classes and sell it yourself real estate? And how do these visual blights appear on our landscape? I seldom see anyone posting them but there must be a veritable army of people out there putting them up. Does all this stuff get posted in the middle of the night?

And, while I am at it, how did we manage to create a society of slobs who plaster a neighbourhood with garage sale signs and then just leave them there to weather and fade for weeks.

Surely, Hamilton, amidst its myriad of bylaws, has something that covers this. And the culprits aren't hard to track down - they all list an address, a telephone number, or an e-mail address.

If bureaucracy can't help us move this blight from those traffic islands that we have spent hundreds of thousands of dollars creating, perhaps it is time for ordinary citizens to register their objections. Maybe we should just call up these offenders and tell them that we don't approve. Perhaps someone needs to create a website that highlights the worst offenders without promoting their products. A few photos in the Spectator might help.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Mountain Memories is Back

The Hamilton Mountain Heritage Society has just taken delivery on a limited edition reprint of their popular pictorial history of Hamilton Mountain - Mountain Memories. This volume has been out of print for several years. Originally published in 2000, it is the only recent volume that has been produced on the history of the Mountain community. This reprint is a valued addition to the currently available resources on Hamilton's history.

The cost of the volume is $35.00 and information about securing copies is available on the HMHS website at

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Forever Henderson

The Hamilton Health Sciences Corporation has made a most lamentable decision. Without much public awareness the Corporation decided, back in 2006, to abandon the name Henderson as the designation of the city's hospital on Concession Street on the Mountain.

The decision was made to replace the Henderson name with that of Juravinski. The Juravinski name is already attached to the Cancer Clinic which is part of the facility and now it is to be extended to the whole institution. Assuming that the Health Sciences Corporation was not actually seeking an excuse to dump the Henderson name, their decision is puzzling. Mr. & Mrs. Juravinski have been very generous benefactors and their generosity certainly deserves to be celebrated. The question is, since the Health Sciences Corporation has a staff of experienced public relations people, how is it that they could not come up with some other alternative? Why do we have to take back an honour already bestowed on someone else in order to honour the Juravinskis?

For the moment, the point is not to justify the appropriateness of the honour previously given to Norah Francis Hamilton. There was more than ample reason to accord her that honour. The point is a more basic one than that. Why must one person be demoted in order for someone else to be celebrated? Has Hamilton so many heroes that there are not distinctions enough to go around?

As this earlier decision is now seeping out into public consciousness there is likely to be a public clamour. And so there should be! The Henderson Hospital doesn't belong to the Hamilton Health Sciences Corporation they have just been appointed to administer it. The Hospital belongs to the people of this city. It is now time for those people to tell the HHSC what they think.

You can learn more about this whole issue by visiting Forever Henderson and registering your response.