Exactly how ass backwards is London?

Please forgive the slightly crude blog title, but there really isn’t a better way to ask that question when I’m feeling the way I am.

The classic car on my street
Photo by plousia

London implemented a pilot project last summer that supposedly cost $140,000. The project? Letting people park overnight on city streets. The $140K cost comes from the apparent revenue loss of parking tickets that are normally issued to the poor saps caught leaving their vehicles on the road in the middle of summer.

A lot of people loved being able to leave their cars on the street. House parties, people too drunk to drive home or hail/call a cab (admit it, you’ve been there!), or a simple lack of parking in your driveway or on the lawn. The reasons you may need to leave your car on the street are numerous.

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The School of One

Not good enough anymore
Not good enough anymore

While researching innovative approaches to educating our children, I came across a pilot project that was run this past summer at a single school in New York City. It’s been dubbed “School of One,” and the approach is very similar to the types of things I mentioned as possibilities in “The Textbook of the Future?” To quote thisĀ New York Times article:

The program […] consists mainly of students working individually or in small groups on laptop computers to complete math lessons in the form of quizzes, games and worksheets. Each student must take a quiz at the end of each day; the results are fed into a computer program to determine whether they will move on to a new topic the next day.

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Diane Beattie, I Want My $451,000 Back!

Dear LHSC Board of Directors and Diane Beattie,

I want my $451,000 back. That’s right, every single penny of severance that was recently afforded to Diane Beattie after the LHSC Board of Directors forced her to resign.

When a scandal like this one breaks out, there is no reason whatsoever that such gross misconduct should result in such a comfortable severance. $451,000 is almost two years worth of Ms. Beattie’s annual pay ($250,000 – not bad, huh?).

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6 Ways to Improve Government in 12 Months

I was recently on vacation in the Azores (archipelago of 9 islands about 1,500km from the coast of Portugal, in the Atlantic Ocean) and late one night I got the spur to begin writing my next blog entry. Though it’s taken me this long to finally sit down and begin fleshing it out, at least I’ve finally gotten to it.

After being exposed to nothing but European news for almost 2 weeks, I began thinking about ways that Canada could improve it’s government in (probably) 12 months or less. Some of these require lengthy explanations, others don’t because others have done the explaining family. So let’s get right into it!

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What Canadian Cities Should Be Doing

Seeing as we have entered construction season here in Canada (a.k.a. spring and summer), I thought it prudent to collect some things that other cities have been doing that I think we ought to be implementing here in London (in some cases especially since we’re known as the Forest City) and other Canadian cities ought to be at least contemplating.

Let’s start with a great example from Vancouver: The roof of the Vancouver Convention Centre has been turned into a green roof. What does that mean?

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