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What was Ford up to during the federal election?
By TVO Current Affairs - Published on Oct 31, 2019
Triple A rating
The Financial Accountability Office of Ontario is warning that the government’s credit rating could drop if economic-growth projections fall short. (iStock.com/AndreyPopov)

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Financial watchdog concerned about Ontario’s credit rating

The Financial Accountability Office of Ontario is warning that the government’s credit rating could drop if economic-growth projections fall short. “The government’s budget plan depends heavily on sustained economic growth and success in limiting spending,” the FAO says in a new report. “An economic downturn or a significant departure from current spending plans could lead to a deterioration in Ontario’s credit health.” Currently, Moody’s, Fitch, and DBRS give Ontario a credit rating of AA-, while Standard & Poor’s gives the province an A+. 

 

Ontario Place put on global watch list

World Monuments Watch has put Ontario Place on its global list of 25 at-risk cultural heritage sites, which also includes Easter Island, Notre-Dame cathedral, and the Sacred Valley of the Incas. The New York-based organization states on its website that it included Ontario Place on the list because of its uncertain future: “The Ontario government now seeks to offer a long-term lease to the site, with little care for maintaining the heritage values associated with Ontario Place, and without public consultation that would allow citizens’ voices to be heard.”


What was Ford up to during the federal election?

Records of Premier Doug Ford’s day-to-day activities obtained by the CBC show that he had no meetings scheduled on at least five weekdays during the 2019 election campaign. The CBC reports that Conservative sources, speaking anonymously, have said keeping Ford out of the spotlight was part of a deliberate effort to improve his declining popularity and limit any potential damage that the premier might have inflicted on federal Conservative leader Andrew Scheer’s campaign.


Ontario treats welfare recipients like criminals, study says

A study is taking aim at the “participation agreements” that people on social assistance are required to follow, the Toronto Star reports. These agreements “have more in common with the corrections system than they do with the tax system or other social programs,” states the report by Ontario 360, an initiative of the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy. The authors argue that there is no evidence to suggest that many of the activities laid out in participation agreements — such as mandatory monthly reporting — help people to get jobs.



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The Agenda: What’s next for Brexit?


Boris Johnson
File photo of Boris Johnson (Will Oliver/EPA/CP)

The October 31 deadline for the United Kingdom to leave the European Union has been extended, and British prime minister Boris Johnson’s hopes for a general election have been foiled. The Agenda welcomes Oonagh Fitzgerald, international law director at the Centre for International Governance Innovation, to discuss the latest in the Brexit saga.


Call of the Forest: The Forgotten Wisdom of Trees

Forests are among the world’s most significant sources of food, medicine, and oxygen. Scientist and author Diana Beresford-Kroeger explores humanity’s profound biological and spiritual connection with trees — and meets people who are helping to replant, restore, and protect the last of Earth’s great ancient forests.



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#onpoli: The election is over. Now what?

Renewed talks of Quebec separatism. Western Canadian alienation. Controversy over pipelines and carbon taxes. The federal election highlighted many of the political divides that exist within Canada. In this episode of the #onpoli podcast, co-hosts Steve Paikin and John Michael McGrath answer questions from Ryerson University students about the election results — and about what comes next for Justin Trudeau’s minority government.



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Why Margaret Thatcher wasn’t there when Canada’s Constitution came home


Pierre Trudeau and Queen Elizabeth
The Queen signs Canada's constitutional proclamation in Ottawa on April 17, 1982, as Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau looks on. (Rod Poling/CP)

A century after the birth of Pierre Trudeau, Steve Paikin writes about what went on behind the scenes when the prime minister was working to repatriate the Constitution — including Trudeau’s efforts to ensure that Margaret Thatcher, the British PM, was on board. Paikin writes that Thatcher couldn’t make it to the signing ceremony in Ottawa because she “was preoccupied with a major foreign-policy crisis that had just unfolded on her watch.” That crisis? The Falklands War.



Tonight on TVO


8 p.m. — The Agenda: Adoption options

For many years, Canadian families have adopted children from China and other countries. But as a result of changes to China’s one-child policy and of other global efforts to keep children in their countries of birth, international adoptions by Canadians have plummeted. The Agenda discusses what options are available to those families who wish to adopt children from other countries.


10 p.m. — Breakthrough: Decoding the Brain

Three pounds of tissue that somehow interprets all the joys and sorrows of the human experience: our brains are among the most complex objects in the known universe. After millennia of speculation about what goes on inside our heads, we now have the resources to explore its deepest reaches. This documentary looks at the contemporary tools that are shedding light on the mystery of consciousness.

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