Gee, Twenty?

Why?

I find it interesting that we are hosting a bunch of countries to talk about the world economy, and are crippling the economy downtown to do it. A dramatic over-statement? Not really. Considering a truck accident on the 401 years ago cost the city a crap-ton of money in lost trade revenue, I would say that closing off a section of downtown and putting a good chunk of the rest on lock-down is probably not much better.

The billion-dollar line item on the budget (for security) is astounding. I guess it’s because of the potential danger posed to the world leaders from all of the protesters. This begs the question: would you need to have so much security if you held the summit in a more remote area? No, they would not. In my opinion, holding the summit in one of the most accessible places in Ontario by all forms of transit is just an invitation for protesters to flock to the area and do their thing.

This all smacks of childish dick-measuring.

Trying to compensate for something, Mr. Harper?


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10 Responses

  1. I was in Huntsville the other day, talking to a business owner about how the G8 was going to impact her, especially since her business is just down the road from the resort where it’s being held. Essentially, they were originally told that they would be able to open as usual, but now they are being told to shut everything down. They’re not concerned about the protesters just yet, since it’s fairly isolated.

    It’s unfortunate that they aren’t doing the whole thing in Huntsville, since it shares geographic isolation with the last Canadian host of the G8, Kananaskis, and the protesters would be left behind in… Toronto. Well, I guess it sucks any way you look at it 😦 (OTOH, we got spiffy new runways at our airport out of it!)

  2. Any city that hosts this summit would face the same type of security. So why not Toronto? Why not Actually put us on the world’s stage for a few days?

    Huntsville is a great spot! And, the town got a new arena out of hosting the G8! But isolated areas like that suffer when it’s on lock-down too, moreso than the city, wouldn’t you say? In a city, you can go elsewhere to get your groceries, and get the things you need. Up there, they can’t. People are vacating their homes during the G8 because it’s too much of a hassle to cope with the new security mesaures. We don’t have to vacate our homes here, do we?

    So again, if it has to happem somewhere, why not here? Why can’t we experience, first hand, what Washington, London and Pittsburgh went through?

    • Interesting points.
      However, I don’t consider Huntsville an isolated area, really. It has at least 2 relatively large highways that grant access to it; it has its share of big-box stores; it gets a fair amount of tourist traffic passing through.

      When I speak about remote areas, I’m referring to places that are not cities. There are a number of resorts and venues that are not really near populated areas.

      My point was that one would think that security would not be quite as expensive in one of these truly isolated places. Putting Toronto on the world stage is fine and dandy, until you consider those poor folks working in buildings that are targeted by protesters-turned-terrorists; transit for these folks is made all the more simple by placing such an event in the hub of the transit system.

  3. Not all protestors are terrorists, so why can’t they have access to the summit to express their opposion?

    Of course it would be awful if anyone is hurt during a demonstration, but that isn’t the point of the summit.

    • Never said all protesters are terrorists. However, keeping in mind the fire-bombing of a bank in Ottawa as part of a “statement”, one would think that it’s wise to take such behaviour into account.

      “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”, they say. However, having the summit in downtown Toronto is like being on fire and then pouring gas on yourself with the hope that the fire will burn itself out faster. The only possible logic is the “keep your friends close and enemies closer” philosophy.

  4. Oh now you’ve gone and done it. Have you seen the shit Harper’s started saying about you on his blog? Brother’s got a vindictive streak, is all I’m saying.

  5. With respect, Jorge, your analysis is sloppy. The G8 meeeting is at Deerhurst, but I doubt there is a sufficiently “remote” location by your definition that has adequate resources to host a *G20* summit. Remember, we are talking about *several thousand* people. Where would they sleep? How would they get there, if it is so isolated? And no matter where they host it, they will need to have the resources available to quickly respond to an emergency in the area (read: terrorist threat) if one arises. I think a G20 summit outside of a major city is a very difficult proposition. Even a G8 meeting probably can’t get more isolated than Huntsville without incurring corresponding overhead.

    But yes, the money being spent on security is totally outrageous.

    http://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2010/05/canada_spending.html

    • Who are these several thousand?

      • Never mind, I just read about how Obama is bringing 400+ people on his own, most of them being security. I guess our 19,000 security people aren’t good enough.

        Unless those 400 are part of that 19,000.

        You can see why I am not an event planner.

  6. […] posted something a little while ago that addressed my thoughts on the event; specifically, the poor choice of venue (downtown Toronto) […]

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