I have never been to LA, but all we see in the news is two things:
Hollywood stars & glamour; and
Race riots, police beatings, muggings, crime.
From this, many Torontonians, being quite ignorant of the reality (as I am), assume that LA is a divided city - with a small, rich population of (mostly White) celebrities, and a large, poor, resentful population of Blacks; and that the police guard the former and beat up the latter.
Many Torontonians feel actual fear about going there, figuring that a holiday in some third world country is likely to be safer.
Now, don’t shoot the messenger - I’m just reporting on what people think; I realize it is most likely completely wrong!
Welcome to toronto. I’m a recent arrival as well (here from Vancouver.) I still am finding the ice and snow a tad disturbing. I get to see a lot of it on the lake (I live on Queens Quay and overlook the ice… I mean, water.) You’ll have to let me know which bookstores work out for you… I’m always on the lookout for fun art books.
Heck, I can give a bit of advice on the bookstore front. Check out Nicholas Hoare on Front St. (my personal favourite, with carefully selected books, knowledgeable staff, comfy couches and wooden floors), and Pages on Queen West (more selection than NH, no places to sit though).
A riding is an electoral district. Sort of like a congressional district in the US. The citizens of each of the 301 (soon to be 308) federal ridings in Canada vote for a Member of Parliament.
Subsequently, the Crown (via the Governor General) appoints as prime minister the person it believes will be best able to get the support of Parliament. In practice, this is always the leader of the party with the most seats in the Commons.
Usually, there have been majority governments, and via the party-discipline system (MPs are essentially required to vote the party line, with rare exceptions called free votes), the government stays in place indefinitely and can do pretty much what it wants. (An election must be called every five years.)
A dissolution of Parliament means that all the seats in Parliament are put up for election – a general election, in other words. You can also have by-elections when an MP resigns.
Should there be a minority government, it would usually form a coalition with another party’s caucus in Parliament, to ensure that it would be able to run things. If it didn’t do this, or if it rather unwisely pissed off its coalition partner, it would risk one of two things:
denial of supply, which means a bill dealing with the spending of money is voted down by the Commons (signaling that the government can no longer decide how money is spent and is therefore useless);
a vote of no confidence, in which the Commons votes that it has no confidence in the government.
In either of those two cases, the Governor General gives the PM a choice: either resign so I can appoint a PM who can get supply/have the House’s confidence; or dissolve Parliament and call an election so that the people can ratify your policies by voting you back in.
(All this makes the Crown/Gov Gen seem much more powerful than they really are. Essentially they have no discretion and everything they do is either because it’s the law or it’s constitutional convention that it would be very rude to upset, if you catch my drift.)
Heh. Seems like “everyone else” is making a comeback as the Liberals go to hell in a handbasket. Here’s a tip: when you get your citizenship, look carefully for the orange signs (remember: orange) and vote for the name you see there.
Vote for green? Vote for orange? <glances rapidly in both directions> However shall I choose? (Note: Sunspace is the offspring of generations of NDPers. )
Niggle, is David Mirvish (?) Books on Art still on Queen Street West? And is Theatrebooks still on Balmuto Street? (I’m not sure how much got demolished with the passing of the Uptown Theatre… must check it out next time I’m there.)