Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Montreal Mayor Fiddles While City Crumbles

Montreal's Mayor Tremblay
"the portrait of a blinking idiot"
Before my summer break, I wrote about the Montreal U2 concert that was a critical success but an economic failure.
At least the event didn't fail on all levels.
It was, to be sure, a rollicking good time and is a good example that if you're going to go off on an expensive bender that will guarantee a big bill and a hangover the next morning, you better have a helluva good time to make it worthwhile.

Unfortunately that is not usually the case in Montreal, where more and more city-backed events have proven to be utter failures on all counts.

In that same blog piece I wrote about Montreal's swimming fiasco hosting a 2005 World aquatic event which was not only an economic disaster but a critical failure as well, with fans staying away from the competition as if there were bedbugs in the seats.
A recent article has placed the losses related to the event at number even a higher than I quoted and when all is said and done, the city lost over 20 million dollars!

Off course the ever-ebullient mayor of Montreal, has perfected the fine art of explaining away every city blunder and disaster as a 'learning experience,' 'bad luck' or a 'one-off mistake', surely never to be repeated.
Unfortunately for we taxpayers suckers, this is not particularly true, as the same boondoggles are perpetrated on an exasperated public over and over again, ad naseum.

But even to my jaded and cynical eye, the mayor has recently risen to a new level of 'chutzpah'  in telling us that he has committed the city to a repeat performance of the very same aquatic disaster of 2005, by hosting the event in 2014.

Listening to the mayor make his pitch I am sadly reminded that I've heard this all before.
From Mayor Jean Drapeau who told Montrealers  arrogantly that; "The Olympics can no more lose money than a man can have a baby"  only to run up a billion dollar deficit, Montrealers have been on the losing end of unrealizable promises made by incompetent fools posing as mayor, for decades.

With unmitigated gall, Mayor Tremblay has taken a page out of the playbook of those famous Montreal telemarketers, who having once fleeced their victim, go back for a second bite by assuring the unfortunate mark, that given another chance, their lost investment will be recouped.

It's nothing new. the Mayor's spiel is as old as the hills and brings to mind the pitch that Bassinio makes to Shylock in Shakespeare's 'Merchant of Venice,' wherein the delinquent borrower beseeches the moneylender to advance more funds, with the hollow assurance that this time, the money will be well invested.
"In my school-days, when I had lost one shaft,
I shot his fellow of the self-same flight

The self-same way with more advised watch,

To find the other forth, and by adventuring both

I oft found both: I urge this childhood proof..." - Bassinio-Merchant of Venice

(To those with weak Shakespearean English, Bassinio begs for another loan by telling the moneylender that in his youth, when he shot an arrow which he subsequently lost, he'd shoot another in the same direction and watch more closely, sometimes recovering both arrows in the process.)

Shylock was not impressed with the story and so too we should be wary of another Tremblay misadventure.

To Montrealers who will foot the bill once more, all I can say is that we deserve it;
"Fool me once, shame on you; Fool me twice, shame on me"

Ten days ago, another chunk of the infamous Ville-Marie expressway came crashing down.  It wasn't a small piece, but rather a whole span of the roof of an underpass, with tons of concrete raining down onto the road. Luckily nobody was killed. Had the event happened during rush hour the death toll would likely have been between five and ten people.
This same road has already been reduced by one lane because of falling concrete.
Montrealers remain petrified driving on this critical artery and with good reason.
The last time a chunk of concrete separated and crashed down, engineers discovered that the reinforcing metal supporting rods (rebar) that was supposed to be buried within the concrete when poured, was not present.
Yup, contractors building the highway either cut corners or just plain forgot to install this critical element. How pronounced the problem is, nobody knows, but the highway may just be the most unsafe elevated highway in North America.
Montreal's newest road sign
With all this in mind, what is the mayor's priority?
Our idiot mayor assures us that while our bridges and underpasses collapse and our homes are flooded by backed up sewers, there's nothing to be worried about.
For him it's important to spend money on bike paths, Bixi and swimming meets. Hundreds of millions of dollars in feel-good projects, while the city infrastructure collapses.

Montrealers have been rocked by City Hall scandal after scandal, too numerous to enumerate. There is no doubt that Montreal ranks as the worst run major city in Canada and is right up there with New Orleans as the worst in North America.

Through all this  we are re-assured by our mayor, wearing the unnerving smile of the Cheshire cat that all is well and that citizens should maintain confidence.

The government Montreal is so rotten, that trusteeship is the only way out. A clean sweep, starting with the mayor, all elected officials and senior civil servants is about the only thing that can right the sinking ship.
Maybe we could bring in Regis Lebeaume!

Readers may wonder, given the gross incompetence of the mayor, how on Earth he got re-elected.

Again, it comes down to language and politics. (Doesn't everything come down to that in Quebec?)

The opposition candidate in the last municipal election was an ex-Parti Quebecois minister, an avowed separatist who spoke no English.
Those thirty or forty percent of anglos and ethnics who vote, had no use for such a candidate and thus, holding their nose, chose what they believed was the lesser of the two evils, Gerald Tremblay.

But enough is enough.
I'm joining the ABT campaign (Anyone But Tremblay) and would even vote for a separatist before I'd vote for this buffoon.

Montrealers should be boiling mad at themselves and at the fool they elected as mayor. As I rage at the thought of our idiot Mayor dreaming up more vanity projects to feed his delusion of grandeur, as his city crumbles, I take solace in the immortal words of the Bard....

"Think therefore on revenge and cease to weep."
Don't miss Friday's Post -
"Air Canada Deserved its Language Fine"

Editor'e Note.
Regular readers will notice a template change.
I hope you like it.
The old template was out of date and didn't allow for many Blogger features, including links to social media.
Reader can also rate each article via a star system under the post. I look forward to your honest opinion.

Thanks to follower "Madame Monaco" for encouraging me to make the change!


  1. I'm fine with the format change, but bring back the "Anglo & Dog" picture, it was a staple!

    As with most politicians anywhere, the public really is at a loss.

    Imagine Tremblay had lost out to that separatist lady in the last election... I truly believe we would be in the same place or worse, plus we'd have to deal with a bunch more french only crap which would only sty-full the city further... we just can't win...

  2. 2 of 2

    Even Harps is trying to play nicely with Brazil, an emerging economy. 184 million people there who speak Portuguese vs. about 10 million people in North America (mostly Quebec and pathetic banana republics in the Caribbean). French is the language of business in Quebec (well...sort of), Haiti and La Martinique...oh, yes and St-Pierre and Miquelon with their 7,000 whole people who live there off the Island of Newfoundland. How long can these puny scraps of population protect themselves like hermits trying to keep English and other languages out?

    If Quebec is out of confederation, NOBODY will deal with them in French. Half their dairy production will be out of business, and only the boutique dairies who produce specialty products may still sell outside Quebec (and there are some good ones).

    Quebec is losing its political clout and how long is a conservative government going to support the failing left-wing politics Quebec has seemingly embraced? If Layton comes back (I say unlikely), or Mulcair takes over, they could throw the Real Canada under the bus as much as they like, but when the next election comes around, the other provinces will throw THEM under the bus. Polls have already shown Quebec voters are showing sings of buyer's remorse. The NDP better enjoy the ride while they can because their four years will end and fade fast.

    Tremblay is as narcissistic as Drapeau was, but as lucky as Drapeau got with Expo 67, he pushed his luck with the Olympics and lost 20 times more than what Expo 67 made. The original roof was never installed and was stored somewhere in France for many years at over $50,000 per month.

    Finally, Editor points out the most failed cities in North America are Montreal and New Orleans. Notice how "distinct" Quebec and Louisiana are? Both are governed by a derivative of Napoleonic law, French of or French descent and predominantly Catholic societies. Maybe this is just coincidence, but then again...

  3. Editor:

    1 of 2:

    I can't thank you enough for positively reinforcing the fact my owning property in debt-free Mississauga is a wise choice and a nice place to live. The doughnuts are fresher here, too [one for Press9, or whoever the clown is that remarks about doughnuts]. Actually, the very first Krispy Kreme doughnut ever made in Canada was in Mississauga; paradoxically, there are more KK outlets in Montreal than the Toronto Area. A second location in Richmond Hill failed, and there one or two others in the GTA other than the one in Mississauga.

    If it comes to Canada, it probably comes to Quebec last, if ever. The first Mickey D's opened in Richmond, BC; Burger King in Windsor, ON; Wendy's in Hamilton, ON; KFC in Calgary; Harvey's in Richmond Hill, ON.

    The only franchise that started in Montreal that I can think of that came to Toronto is Tiki Ming, mostly in food courts. Prior to 2000, Mike's was owned by M-Corp, HQ in Toronto. I met former director Austin Beutel personally to determine if Mike's would ever come to Toronto. He said a handful would have to open in Toronto fearing one franchise would fail too easily, and if that happens, piercing the market would never happen. Mike's never came to Toronto, or Ontario for that matter. Quebec concept restaurants don't seem to cross the Ottawa River, and the only Mike's franchise outside Quebec is in Moncton, NB. Hot Dog restaurants (La Belle Province, P'tit Québec, Valenin's and others) have been tried, only to fail. Steam City was Toronto's biggest foray into steamies...failed (sadly), but the prices in Toronto couldn't compete with Montreal, or the street vendors and their parboiled/grilled fare.

    Quebec is too pro-labour, pro-union, over-regulated business by-laws, not to mention too many language police. Proof positive the Real Canada should put on a movement to remove whiny Quebec from Canada. Maybe Lucien Bouchard's mischievous "English Canada" moniker should be put into action. Get rid of Quebec, and French as an offficial language in Canada WILL be dead, and don't think for a minute there won't be amendments to the Constitution by the other provinces to abolish French as an official language.

  4. Government is the problem...

    ““We don’t want the party to end, the “free” trips, expense accounts…perks, gold plated pensions, free this, free that…Yes indeed, see we in government, are all entitled to our entitlements folks and we can’t stop that, at least not until we retire. Our unions say so, it’s ours and we want it now...$$$”

    Scum bag parasitic unions, police, all government…all the same, bankrupting future generations…and they don’t give a damn.

    We now have over 3.5 million people working for government across the country. Average salary in government is 70 thousand (including benefits, pension, bonuses...) yearly and rising. Average salary in the private sector is 45 thousand yearly and dropping. Over 10% of government employees now make over 100 thousand yearly. In the private sector the number is under 2%. Look to Greece, Ireland and Quebec (all bankrupt), this is where Canada is headed if we don’t stop equalization and get spending and government growth under control. This tax and spend, union scum, socialist, big government, social engineering that has been destroying this country has got to stop. Yes, it has left Quebec and has been spreading throughout the rest of the country since the 1960”s, that’s right over 5 decades of massive government growth, massive government hiring, higher taxes, skyrocketing government salaries, social engineering ( the expensive forced phony charter, bilingualism, multiculturalism…) and more and more debt. Thanks Trudeau, Tanks kebec (original native spelling). Don’t believe me; go check the stats for yourself.

    Try to digest this scum bags. Who do you think is going to pay off all this debt you are leaving your children, your grandchildren? That’s what I thought, you don’t care!

    Watch the video, this is what government is not telling you. Its happening in Canada as well.

  5. Ah yes, Mayor arrogant as they come. This man has a lot of gall, indeed. He's one of the things I happily left behind when we moved out of Quebec in 2009.

  6. Anon @ 2:03PM: If I didn't know better, I'd swear you're Howard Galganov, except for the fact he has abandoned writing about Canada in favor of dissing Obama at every turn...not that I blame him for doing so, Obummer is all form and no substance, but that's off topic.

    Galganov, like you, is fed up with overpaid and government people very generous unto themselves with their entitlements. I can't state that I blame him or you for feeling that way. Stupid is what stupid does, and Quebec is what MacLean's writes.

    Despite the trillions of dollars Quebec has received in equalization payments over the years, they are still in wretched shape. The only infrastructure Quebec has done well is the extensions of the Metro, adding that Line 5. Toronto can use a Line 5, i.e., an East-West line further north parallel to the one they have now, much like Line 5 is to Line 1. Extending Line 2 into Laval was a great thing, too. The population of Toronto has extended further North...and West and East, but only a spur of a new line has been built.

    Sadly, that's where most of the positive infrastructure in Montreal ends.

    Quebec finally couldn't stand the jokes anymore about crossing over from Ontario into Quebec. Where the 401 became the 20, you didn't need border markers in years past to know when you entered Quebec...the thumpety-thumpety-thump of the pavement let you know, and you could detect that with a sack over your head! As usual, Quebec found a half-assed way to solve the problem...well, the obvious jokes: Now the thumpety-thumpety-thumping pavement on the 20 starts about 5km in from the border. The roads are still crap, not to mention the bridges, overpasses, etc.

    My family moved into Chomedey in 1961. Our street was still gravel until it was paved a year or two later. It hasn't been paved since. Just patchwork on the patchwork! My street in Mississauga was cut up and repaved TWO years ago. A small street bridge going over a ravine was repaired, upgraded and the WHOLE street repaved about four years ago.

    Our water pipes were re-done about five years ago (my property was built in 1974)...source and wastewater! In Chomedey, the pipes were being replaced after 45 years minimum, not less than 35 years like in Mississauga. Oh...and Mississauga is STILL debt-free. Not $1 of bonds issued to cover deficits! Our mayor is 91 years old, has been the mayor for almost 33 years, including the 1979 evacuation due to a train wreck. Oh, yes, and SHE was born in Port Daniel, QC, in the Gaspé Peninsula.


  7. @Mr. Sauga

    Notre cirque s'est installé a toronto pour quelques jours.Vous devriez aller assister a un vrai spectacle au moins une fois dans votre vie.
    Ça vous changerait des concours de tartes annuels dans le parc communautaire de mississauga.

  8. @ Anon.:

    "Notre cirque s'est installé a toronto pour quelques jours."

    The entire province of Quebec is a circus, LOL!

  9. "The entire province of Quebec is a circus, LOL! "

    Actually, it's not a circus but a JOKE.

    Anyone read the article in the Toronto Star by Claude Denis...Give it a read. He is claiming that the ROC does not understand Quebec and should reach out more. F'k, can you believe that...with all the perks and money we send to the cess pool of Canada with their backward folk language. Unbelievable.

    A Westerner

  10. @A Westerner

    Un peu de respect le fermier des prairies.C'est nous qui décidons,pas le roc.Claude Denis a écrit un très bon article...Dommage que ce soit dans cette merde de toronto star,publication de BS.

  11. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  12. Claude Denis is an idiot like so many other French reporters. He repeats the same blackmail BS, “poor Kebec, we are not understood, give us more money or else, bill 101 is good, we are not understood by Canada…its not our fault…” blah, blah, blah. We’ve been hearing it for decades. Hebert, Bellevance, Denis, all French writers in Canada…all the same, lying scum bags who support the banning of English in Kebec while supporting the enfocement of French outside kebec. They are all hypocrites, its pathetic that anyone pays them for the trash they write. Just do us all a favour, when and if these racist scum bags ever separate, go with them, please.

  13. "...who support the banning of English in Kebec while supporting the enfocement of French outside kebec..."

    Nous ne voulons que rétablir un équilibre harmonieux des forces dans un canada uni.
    Pas de quoi a faire une crise de coeur.
    Calmos amigo!Un peu de bilinguisme dans l'Ouest est un atout majeur,surtout si vous songez a travailler au sein de la fonction publique ou dans le domaine touristique.

    A lire ce blogue,j'ai l'impression que certains anglophones canadiens sont de plus en plus agressifs et se laissent emporter facilement par la colère plutôt que de réagir de façon calme et raisonnée.

    Résultat d'un taux trop élevé d'uranium dans l'eau des vastes prairies?

  14. To Anonymous, aka Press 9 at 4:59 PM:

    "Calmos amigo!Un peu de bilinguisme dans l'Ouest est un atout majeur,surtout si vous songez a travailler au sein de la fonction publique ou dans le domaine touristique."

    Those days are numbered. There is a growing backlash against Quebec in the rest of have behaved like a-holes for far too long. People are fed up of you.

    "A lire ce blogue,j'ai l'impression que certains anglophones canadiens sont de plus en plus agressifs et se laissent emporter facilement par la colère plutôt que de réagir de façon calme et raisonnée."

    Yeah right. This comes from a Franco fanatic who threatened to throw projectiles at the heads of people carrying Canadian flags on Canada Day in Montreal. Don't you remember? You said they needed to wear helmets.

  15. "There is a growing backlash against Quebec in the rest of Canada..."

    Comme si le reste du canada était une entité uniforme et ou ces habitants seraient unanimes.Le canada actuel pourrait facilement être divisé en 4 régions selon les aspirations politiques et économiques des provinces.La langue n'est qu'un problème parmi tant d'autres.

  16. “C'est nous qui décidons,pas le roc”

    You decide what? Where to get your daily dose of poutine?
    The article raved against the continual and persistent indifference of an average Joe in the RoC to Quebec. So I think it's Canadians that decide for themselves what to care about and what to be indifferent about, regardless of what say their federal government and political writers from Quebec (with self-serving agendas of their own disguised as concern for national unity).


    “Anyone read the article in the Toronto Star by Claude Denis...Give it a read. He is claiming that the ROC does not understand Quebec and should reach out more.”

    Andre Pratte penned a similar article recently in The Globe and Mail, entitled “Why are so many young Quebecers still sovereigntists?”. It was essentially the same thing as with Denis’s article…with the disgustingly manipulative “be nice or we separate” angle in the forefront.

    As for the shameless exploitation of the separation issue (which is overhyped for political ends by Quebec elites), Pratte and Denis should be ashamed of themselves for getting involved in this. I think they got paid under the table by the Quebec government for their “contribution”, as do various fringe groups like SSJB and MMF.

  17. "The article raved against the continual and persistent indifference of an average Joe in the RoC to Quebec"

    Croyez-vous que le canada est un sujet de conversation quotidien pour les Québécois?

    Le Québécois moyen (Jean) ne sait même pas nommer ou situer géographiquement les 9 provinces canadiennes et ceux qui connaissent Harper,le déteste.

    Comment voulez-vous vous sentir chez vous lorsque l'on communique avec vous dans une langue étrangère?

    Pour la plupart des Québécois,le canada est un pays étranger avec des moeurs totalement différentes des nôtres.

    Ceci dit,vous sentez-vous chez vous a Montréal adski?

  18. It wasn't my point to suggest that the average Jean cares about Canada. The average Jean, just like the average Joe, cares about nothing else but his own backside.

    My point, from which you deflect, is that Quebec plays the indifference card on the political arena. The problem with that is, first, that it's extremely manipulative and dishonest (faking concern for "national unity" while peddling a self serving agenda whose aim it is to maintain some sort of a "special" -i.e. privileged- status of Quebec within Canada), and second, as a libertarian, I strongly believe that people should have the right o decide for themselves what to care about or not (contrary to social engineers who believe that it should be the role of the state to decide the priorities for the citizens). If they choose to care for Nascar more than about saving a whale, then I will note their ignorance but still grant them the right to do what they want to do (I will not proselytize or preach).

    The fact that Quebec, which is nothing more than a place inhabited by people and thus carries absolutely no ethical implication (as saving a whale would), my question to Mssrs. Denis and Pratte would be: "why do you pollute our air waves with demands that we should care about Quebec? What the f**k is so special it about Quebec? It's just a place, like any other."

  19. And btw, when I say "I strongly believe that people should have the right o decide for themselves what to care about or not", I extend this to all the Quebecois and their attitude towards Canada. I don't adore Canada either although I'm a naturalized citizen here. (I flinch at the pathetic flag waving and the arrogant "best country in the world" claims).

    My point is this: don't care about Canada if you wish, but leave Canadians in peace in their not caring about you. They have the right not to give a shit about you. And most of them don't. So separate if you must, or put up and shut up. Because you're not the center of the world, kids.

  20. @adski

    Est-ce si difficile d'avouer que si le canada n'était pas intervenu lors du référendum de 95,nous serions déja un pays?Si vous voulez jeter le blâme sur des Québécois,adressez-vous a J.J Charest et J.Chrétien.

    Alors,qu'ils assument les conséquences de leur malhonnête intrusion dans les affaires du Québec et qu'au prochain référendum,les canadians garderont leur fausses et éphémères manifestations d'affection pour eux.

  21. @ Press 9,

    "Alors,qu'ils assument les conséquences de leur malhonnête intrusion dans les affaires du Québec et qu'au prochain référendum,les canadians garderont leur fausses et éphémères manifestations d'affection pour eux."

    Here is a better description of dishonesty: the fraudulent rejection of thousands of valid "No" votes in the 1995 referendum by the separatists in charge at the voting stations. Federalists wanted a vote recount even though they won the referendum, but the separatists fought tooth and nail against it and had the ballots destroyed. They didn't want their massive fraud to be exposed. If a fair recount was done, I would surmise that the results wouldn't have been so close. There should be federal and international observers present at the voting stations in any future referendum on Quebec sovereignty.