#64 – Tim Horton’s Brown Sludge Water™, Part Five: Abuse? More like Profits!

Tim Hortons is a shit place to work, and the cakers who purchase Tim Hortons franchises are actively engaged in the wretched trade of using foreigners to perpetuate bullshit Canadiana narratives. It is truly a sign of how few fucks cakers give for their “diverse” neighbors that these wretched businesses are allowed to get away with treating their workers like complete toss.

To give you an idea of how bad this is gonna get, I’m going to pull out this story about how franchise owners repeatedly asked for Mexican hostages temporary foreign workers, and when said Mexicans rightly complained about the retarded rule of the pettiest of despots, some caker named Tony Van Den Bosch, said Mexicans were subsequently deported. And there are more than a few tyrannical dipshits treating foreign workers like shit. This first paragraph has been about foreign workers because foreigners are the only people who will work these trash jobs unless the poverty of the place is so extreme that domestics will take such lowly jobs. The picture below is of Pierre Pelletier. Just look at this fucknut.

This is the face of Canadian business.

Let’s list some of the miserable possibilities available to the poor schmuck who has been either reduced or seduced into working at these miserable factories of sadness. After dumping your resume in at your local Tims you can look forward to the awesome prospect of getting your junk roasted by a shattering coffeepot. Speaking of gonads, a Timslave can also enjoy the incredible bevy of disgusting fluids, behaviors, and abuses of the average caker scumbag. And don’t even think about collecting tips, an already-sad act of desperation that signals for all to see the immutable cruelty of the despotic shitlicks who purchase and operate your average house of sludge. Looking to leave after your shift is over? Basic human dignity ain’t what you signed up for, pleb! Enjoy working for free!

Such enviable working conditions are of course why the only people who work these jobs are the foreigners who have been duped into coming here. Such an unmitigated cruelty surely has no place in Canada’s utopia of multicultural bliss, right? Surely the wise, honest Canadians would resoundingly tell this corporate behemoth that it would have to improve working conditions to a point where Tim’s isn’t basically hell on earth to work at if it wanted to employ people. Already sick of decaying quality and rising prices, one would expect Canadians to finally send this antiquated, feeble corpse of a business to its grave for its poor labor practices.

Nope! Tim Hortons’ parent company is doing fine despite Tims being washed up and unable to expand beyond the caker frontier. The company even went so far as to stamp their feet and jack the cost of their awful breakfast “sandwiches” when Ontario raised minimum wage in a futile attempt to address the runaway cost of living in that province. Apparently the people I’m supposed to feel for in this context, at least as far as the Canadian Federation of Independent Businesses (which is a fucking lark – in what universe is Tim’s an “independent” business?), are those poor franchisees who were forced to pay their people. Yes, the raise was too much for Tim Hortons’ shitty franchisees, who cut paltry benefits like any good caker business would when forced to acknowledge rising costs and inferior product. Why address the quality problem when your margins are shrinking when you can shaft other people, right?

The circle of caker business that ultimately serves to shit on the common man finds its full apotheosis as Tim Hortons heirs, a bunch of worthless cakers who fled to Florida to enjoy the superior American culture forced their wage slaves valued employees sign forms effectively decrying the wage increase. Surprisingly, cakers opted to protest this behavior, threatening to boycott shit food that they would already have run out of town if they had any taste. And in classic caker style, the parent company’s response to this childish behavior is to complain while doing nothing about it. Passing the buck while people suffer is a Canadian tradition, just like disgusting sock-water!

 

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#45 – Canada’s House of Cards

…Where to even begin with Canada’s disgraceful relationship with housing? We kind of fail from the word go here – this country is home to some incredibly shit housing. Starting with a fundamental lack of the stuff, a consequence of mindless suburbanization (of which Canada was a pioneer) and horrendous social housing policy (where any even exists). Probably somehow even worse than no home within the confines of caker urbanism are the absymal shacks that far too many Indigenous peoples live in. This is of course in the same country that seems to have an incredible fascination with speculating on housing markets. There’s something particularly cruel about the way that Canada effectively permits gambling with housing costs while so many of its people suffer for want of tolerable housing, and this vein of critique into Canada is basically endless. I could make this entire blog about shitty housing policy and probably still make to 200.

The best way to use this post, I suppose, is to introduce the scope of the problem. Canada has (unbelievably) developed a national housing strategy, apparently. I say “apparently” because I can’t find the actual document to review. What I’ve seen looks like a lot of handouts to developers and buzzwords, but without the actual document there’s not a whole lot of judgement that I can actually throw down. So let’s instead briefly glance at the scope of the problem that our valiant new housing strategy (which is about 50 years late) is attempting to conquer.

Before we speak of the particularly-unfathomable housing problems of Canada’s perpetual racial underclass, let’s talk about the disgrace that is Canada’s urban housing policy. As in the United States, suburbanization was practically subsidized in Canada, by both provincial and municipal machinations. Indeed, Canada was among the first places to seriously embrace this disasterous idea – as early as 1953 Toronto was getting ready to be choked by shit tract-development which was so rigidly-engineered (in exactly the kind of way Jane Jacobs tells us is a shit idea) that there were no sidewalks. As for the dreadful urban renewal which led to heartache and urban failure in so many American cities, well…yeah, we’ve got that too. And yeah, it’s pretty fucking shit here too.

(S) Regent Park as initially constructed. Yup, sure looks like towers of bullshit!

Canada’s low-income housing programs are almost hilariously underfunded and are in fact total shit. Toronto’s affordable housing, run by the Toronto Community Housing Corporation, is literally crumbling due to age and lack of attention. With an overfixation on building more as opposed to repairing current stock, this problem doesn’t seem likely to go away any time soon. A fixation on maximizing profits leads to poor policy decisions which in fact encourage price speculation on housing markets. And that’s not to even mention the chronic mismatch between the building of rental units in Canadian cities and the need for said. And the scope of the problem is substantial – nearly 20% of Canadians pay more than 50% of their income towards rent costs, with small towns and suburbs playing a disproportionate role in that total.

And that, my friends, is where the good times end for Canada’s housing stock.

From here, we go to one of Canada’s most truly abhorrent sins. Indigenous housing stock, particularly on reserves is frankly third-world. In 2001 nearly half of the total reserve housing stock was in need of overhaul or replacement. More than half of Indigenous housing stock is reported to contain mold or mildew. Almost a third of reserve water supplies are unsafe; nearly 2000 housing units are without adequate sewage or water services. Shitty housing was the cause of a fire that killed four children and their father near London, Ontario in 2016; the home, which was effectively kindling was denied funding for housing improvements from Ottawa.

(S) “Oh, yeah. That looks about fine for dem Injins!” – Ottawa, probably

So that’s what we’re going to be picking at with this topic – how cakers entrenched an untenable housing system of boring, rolling suburbs, how urban centers have utterly failed their residents, how brutal the consequences of shitty policy are for Canada’s poorest, and of course the unbelieveable savagery that is Indigenous housing policy. It’s a whole seething ball of bullshit worth several posts, and you’d better believe that I intend to assail Canada’s shit housing from every angle.

 

#42: The Job Fairy, Part Two – Hooray for Potemkin Towns!

There are few places as unbelievably sad as Canada’s collection of also-ran tourist towns. Wracked and transmorphed into Potemkin visions of what caker tourists want, these Potemkin towns invariably become centers of sad-sack commercial consumption. Whether this happens through sadsack tourist traps like lethal, abusive novelties like zoos or through a fetishized history actualized through poorly-maintained historical sites, Canada’s small-town tourism tries and fails to present anything of interest in no small part because Canada’s towns themselves are all generic places built on the same principles of sprawl, car dependency, and thoughtless development.

Let’s take a handful of examples to prove my point. As a young child I spent a lot of time driving to pathetic, collapsing tourist attractions. These places are textbook instances of caker business; rather than improving customer experience with income these places instead opt to milk every penny out of the gullible folks who dared to hope that Canadian small businesses might produce something resembling fun. The poster-child for this shit is, of course, Niagara Falls. I won’t deign to do a better job of dismissing the Falls than this unbelievably well-written piece, so I won’t try. The last line from that takedown really says it all: “We invented Vegas, for God’s sake. They have stolen our heritage”. Indeed quite.

Does the prospect of having your experience of a big ol’ waterfall ruined by waddling through an ugly downtown full of tacky has-been enterprises run by one of two families (oligarchy, for the record, is a sure-fire signal of caker business) not turn your crank? Need a “smaller-town” to waste your caker money in? Well, why don’t we turn to the vintner’s Potemkin town par excellence, Niagara-on-the-Lake! First off, you’d better not expect to be getting there any other way save for personal motorcar – there are no public transit options to get to the place, except on Friday, Saturdays, and Sundays. And even then that’s only during the summer. There’s also a touch of cruelty to playing wannabe Victorian noble in an area with atrocious living standards, but then again Canada is not a place known for its ability to recognize social cruelty.

Onwards to cottage country, where towns like Bracebridge and Huntsville milk their remaining specks of historical development while building concrete sheds of box stores and misery around said nubs of what once was. Take Bracebridge as an example. Home to the lovely Manitoba St., one of the rare streets in Canada that actually serves as a relatively enjoyable place to walk. Nice brick buildings, hip and trendy storefronts, the Saturday Farmers’ Market – what’s not to love? I’ve taken the liberty of highlighting Manitoba St. in green on the map below, and drew red boxes around the generic, formless, total shit that is also found in Bracebridge.

Bracebridge.png
The perfect ratio of bullshit to tolerability!

Oh, and don’t you worry about getting to Bracebridge, a town which was created in no small part because of rail connectivity to Toronto having rail access. You won’t be getting to Muskoka by rail anytime soon! Because fuck effectively moving huge groups of people. To be even more shitty, Manitoba St., which is already an insufferably overpriced den of caker-tchotchkes is actually pretty good in comparison to hellishly poorly-designed mutations like Collingwood, a ski and cycling hub. Both First and Hurontario Sts., which house most of the town’s attractions and commercial activity are insufferable stroads drowning in excessive parking and a lack of accessibility and affordability for car-less locals.

Even Canada’s tourist towns suck ass. Home to Potemkinized visions of small-town Canada, choking on caker businesses and their shoddy practices, and inaccessible to all save those with enough money to waste on personal vehicle ownership, the communities trying to pull tourists into their towns have thus far managed to price residents away and to build generic, boring tripe for non-residents to pretend to be amazed by. What a deal!