"So the real test of this hurricane is whether, after the event, there's still the will to tackle the long-term questions. For example, as further refutation of the Diamond thesis, in 1981 America had 315 oil refineries in operation; today, it has 144.
Louisiana has 17 of them, operating - pre-hurricane - at capacity. Which is why petrol will be up 20 cents a gallon by the weekend. Why, in the middle of a war centred on unstable foreign oil regimes in the Middle East, is it still politically impossible to upgrade the capacity of the domestic oil industry?
As the tsunami and Hurricane Katrina demonstrate, mankind has got very good at responding to acts of God. We're not so hot at responding to the acts (political and cultural) of man."
"One woman fought back tears telling me about the murder of her daughter. Statistics are no comfort to her: She wants tougher sentencing. Like many others, she can't understand some of the sentencing, bail and parole decisions in recent years. Meanwhile, our police are frustrated that they put their lives at risk and work hard to apprehend dangerous criminals, only to find them back on the streets committing more violent offences hours or days later.
It's time to send a strong message to criminals that gun crimes mean serious jail time. That's why I have urged Mr. McGuinty to join me in calling on the federal government to enact measures that would increase minimum sentences for the use of a firearm in the commission of an offence."
"Anyone watching the Toronto Blue Jays baseball game yesterday saw a little 5-year-old black boy who had been hit with four bullets -- one still in him -- during one of these nutsy shootouts that also wounded two adults. Hobbling from his wheelchair, the little guy threw out the first ball in the game and wowed us all with his billion-dollar smile.
For the sake of him and the millions of other wonderful youngsters trying to grow up in our community, Torontonians have to stand up now and declare: "Enough is enough!....
10-year mandatory sentence
No matter. The worsening situation in Toronto will not improve until all levels of government take it seriously. A good start would be to impose a 10-year mandatory sentence for anyone carrying a gun in committing a crime. "