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Five Hot Cities 5

Year of the Bull 9

Snow Village 13

Obama 19

The Bull & Bear A publication of the

McGill’s Business Voice Since 2003


March 2012 • Volume 9 • Issue 7

Visit our website for SSMU elections coverage.

Occupiers Punished


Bull & Bear

Floor fellows dismissed for involvement in 6th floor occupation Dan Novik Staff Writer

wo Solin Hall floor fellows were terminated last week due to their involvement in the occupation of the 6th floor of the James Administration Building in early February. Francis (Danji) Buck-Moore and Drew Childerhose had been floor fellows since the beginning of the school year. Their dismissals have further polarized student discourse during a tumultuous year. “Removing these two floor fellows, who happen to be extremely popular in residence, leaves two floors without a floor fellow for the remainder of the academic year. This does not reflect in any way the commitment those in the administration are purported to have to student well-being,” notes current Solin Hall resident Anna Ruddy. Buck-Moore and Childer-

RESULTS Pages 10-11

hose were both dismissed last week during separate meetings with Michael Porritt, executive director of McGill Residences and Student Housing. Though the occupiers will not likely face legal action, the Administration made it clear that they will face disciplinary actions for their disruption of university activities. “Complaints will be filed against the occupiers under the Code of Student Conduct and Disciplinary Procedures, and the standard protocols will be followed,” read a February 7th email from Michael Di Grappa, Vice-Principal (Administration and Finance). Buck-Moore and Childerhose occupied the 6th floor of James Administration Building from February 7th to 12th. As a result, the building was closed and all employees were forced to work from home during this time. Along with their fellow occupiers, Buck-Moore and Childerhose unsuccessfully sought for Deputy Provost (Student Life

and Learning) Morton Mendelson’s resignation, and demanded that the administration recognize the results of the fall QPIRG and CKUT referenda. They were peacefully evicted by Montreal police on February 12th after the Administration refused to negotiate while their building was being occupied. A letter addressed to Porritt signed by professors and students urged the Administration to drop the proceedings against the floor fellows. “In regards to the specific incidents of February 7th-12th, both Mr. BuckMoore and Mr. Childerhose acted in good faith with the best interest of others in their hearts,” reads the letter. Despite the 388 signatures on the letter, the decision was made for Buck-Moore and Childerhose to be dismissed from their floor fellow positions and vacate their rooms at Solin Hall. Continued on Page 2

Sherbrooke Occupied by Riot Police - Page 5


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The Brief

2 The Bull & Bear David Lin Executive Editor Hugo Margoc Alvira Rao News Editors Tarun Koshy Opinion Editor Kristine Pinedo Chris Conery Lifestyle Editors Ivan Di Mohammad Awada Markets Editors

What not to miss in Management this month.

OCCUPIERS PUNISHED (CONT’D FROM PAGE 1) While there is no termination clause in their contract, according to McGill Residences and Student Housing, “as students and employees, SAS [Student Academic Staff] are subject to both McGill University’s Code of Student Conduct as well as University regulations.” According to Section 5 of the Code of Student Conduct, “No stu-

dent shall, by action, threat, or otherwise, knowingly obstruct University activities.” The tactics of the occupation of the sixth floor were not widely supported by the majority of McGill students, and some believe that the Administration acted correctly in terminating the floor fellows. “We can safely say that occupying the James Ad-

Kunal Shah Photo Editor

min Building constituted a violation of the law. Breaking the law is legitimate grounds for terminating an employee’s contract,” finds Brendan Steven, one of the leaders of the Moderate Political Action Committee (ModPAC), a campus group opposed to radical student politics. Many students, especially current Solin Hall residents, are

Faculty Olympics: Apocalypse 2012

Manuella Djuric Advertising Director

March 8th - 11th Although it’s too late to register, keep up with the annual SSMU Faculty Olympics to see which faculty at McGill has the best of it all

Sean Alex Finnell Online Editor Michael Horowitz Chief Layout Editor Olivia Siu Marketing Director Layout Editors: Michael Tong Alessandra Hechanova Matthew Hunter Advertising: Michaela Hirsch Margaret Cavenagh Daichi Ishikawa Wali Zia Devika Advani Jana Sauma Lara Khoury David Gao Shonezi Noor Olivia Siu

outraged by the floor fellows’ dismissal. “We firmly believe that the removal of Mr. Buck-Moore and Mr. Childerhose from their positions would leave Solin Hall lacking two of its finest floor fellows,” the petition reads. Buck-Moore and Childerhose have consulted with Legal Aid to appeal their dismissal.

Strategic Summit on the Needs of International Students March 9th International students: come to this forum, where you will have the opportunity to address your questions and issues with the administrative staff of McGill

MIC Trading Simulation


March 10th email us at mic.mgmt@mail.mcgill for more information

The McGill Trading Simulation will host over 200 participants from Canada’s 15 top universities. Traders will experience the excitement and anxiety of a real trading floor

SSMU Sustainability Case Competition EXPO March 14th The Bull & Bear is an editorially autonomous newspaper published by the Management Undergraduate Society of McGill University. Editorial opinions expressed in the Bull & Bear are the sole responsibility of the Bull & Bear’s Editorial Board, and are not necessarily those of the University, MUS or their officers. The Bull & Bear is not responsible for the delivery of any goods or services sold or advertised through its sponsors or Business Directory and is not liable for loss or damage of whatever nature and extent resulting directly or indirectly from any use of the information made available by the newspaper and sponsors. March 2012

Come to the Shatner Ballroom (SSMU building 3rd floor) between 10:30am and 3:00pm to vote for your favorite student-designed sustainable cafe! Check out the finalists at

Amnesty McGill’s Free Verse for Freedom



March 16th

March 20th - 24th

March 30th

Attend a night of human rightsbased spoken word poetry by artists from McGill and Montreal. Tickets are $3, with proceeds going to Amnesty International Canada

Watch presentations by teams from all over the world at this year’s McGill Management International Case Competition. More information at

Come to the fashion show and help support a good cause!

The Bull & Bear


Hugo Margoc and Alvira Rao, News Editors


From MIT to McGill A discussion with Professor Jeroen Struben Michael Haddad Staff Writer

Jeroen Struben, Professor at Desautels since 2008, teaches International Business (MGCR 382) and Simulation of Management Systems (MGSC 578; for graduate and advanced undergraduate students). Mr. Struben, where were you born? I was born in the city of Delft, a small, student-orientated town. I’ve lived in Haarlem and Amsterdam as well. What were your favourite aspects of growing up? Growing up with three siblings was a great part of my life, as we always had fun together. I also enjoyed outdoor activities, such as hikes and nature walks, especially at a younger age. Lastly, I was an avid chess player. I began playing chess at a very young age, against older players. At the age of ten or fifteen, I would be out late playing chess; I loved it. A bit of a light question now: What is your favourite food or cuisine? I’m a man who enjoys oys-

ters. If I had to choose, I would say French cuisine is my favourite; a good “Steak frites” is right up my alley. A good salmon or steak tartar is great as well. Living in Montreal now, I truly enjoy all the different restaurants available to me. That’s something I love about this city. What would you say is an underrated skill or asset in management, notably in the International Business context? An issue that is often times not well addressed, is the general idea of critically observing an issue. In order to truly solve a managerial or general issue, one must grasp the root of the problem. This can only be achieved with a critical perspective. Only when one stands back, observes the root of the issue, and questions the status quo, will the issue be properly resolved. I find that this casual consideration of the root of a problem is something which needs to be addressed. What do you believe is a problem in your field (education)? I suppose grading is sometimes an ambiguous process. I

find that it lacks some multidimensionality, in that answers can only be right or wrong. This is one of the challenges of standardization, I guess. It’s unfortunate, because students face very high levels of pressure in order to perform in this standardized grading system. More on-hand work, as well as extra and intra-curricular activities should be used in order to assess students’ abilities. What is one of the reasons you have decided to stay at McGill? This school has become such an eclectic, high-quality institution. It’s an honour to be a part of this community. The intellectually stimulating environment of students and professors conducting incredible research is another reason for McGill’s appeal. Is there anything that you think needs to be changed here at Desautels? I suppose that administration and faculty could have a better grip on the students’ intrinsic experiences here at McGill. Truly understanding the students’ feelings about their time here at McGill is something I find needs to be re-examined. It’s definitely an

Jean Moirez

Professor Struben teaches International Business at McGill

important question to be raised, in order to enrich our community, and to [improve] studentadministration relationships. If you had some final words of advice to give to graduating students, what would they be? Appreciate your time at McGill, and benefit from it to the fullest. You are all in a great institution which can offer you so

much, and you should exploit that. Leaving McGill, you’re in a unique situation, and you should benefit from that background. Don’t follow any bandwagons; be yourself, and build yourself. Always be critical of others, issues, problems, and most importantly, yourself. Lastly, have fun!

New Course Curriculum to be Introduced in Organizational Behaviour The new and improved curriculum is set to be introduced in the 2012-2013 academic year Andrea Zhu Staff Writer


n Monday, February 13th 2012, the Desautels School of Management’s Organizational Behavior Area publicly released news regarding the termination of the current Organizational Behavior Course Counselor (OBCC) Program in order to introduce a new and improved curriculum in the 2013-2014 academic year. This decision was rendered in December 2011, after considerable deliberation by the program staff and OB Area, and strategically announced to current students and course counselors (CCs) in February 2012 given the CC annual recruiting due in March. This year’s team will be the last to join the ranks of the OBCC alumni, known for their successful careers as entrepreneurs, consultants, and business leaders following their time at March 2012

McGill. For current, past, and aspiring CCs, this news was received with mixed feelings. “It doesn’t really affect us, but I feel bad for the students who applied for next year,” confesses current OBCC Jack Kontopoulos who, like many of his peers, knew enthusiastic and gifted candidates that would have made a great next generation in the program. The existing program structure consists of 24 CCs selected annually to lead mandatory weekly interactive small group teachings to groups of approximately 30 students enrolled in the MGCR 222 Introduction to Organizational Behavior core course. Paired off to facilitate a total of twelve sections, the CCs are chosen among MGCR 222 alumni, and required to take their own course, ORGB 429 Advanced Organizational Behavior for Course Counselors, to better promote understanding and learning for the 700+ MGCR 222 students they will work with over the school year.

After 30 successful years, it is with a focus on students’ academic experience at McGill that this drastic change is being implemented. “The Area is committed to the development [and] reinvention of ORGB 429 into an experiential leadership course in which greater numbers of students will have the opportunity to gain ‘real world’ experience in organizations,” explains Professor Alfred Jaeger, Area Coordinator for Organizational Behavior in his announcement email. Following the same mandate to enhance students’ experiential learning, the extinction of this “CC legacy” unique to Desautels also paves way for long-term plans of improvement, including the possibility of introducing Organizational Behavior as a Major for BCom students. The team and staff currently restructuring the course urges interested students to stay posted as details of the new format are confirmed next year.


PROVE IT. Apply for staff at

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The Bull & Bear



Hugo Margoc and Alvira Rao, News Editors

Open Forum for Open Dialogue Michael Haddad Staff Writer


n light of recent events on campus, namely the James building occupation in early February, the McGill administration has decided to re-evaluate procedure concerning such events. With protests, assemblies, and occupations becoming more prevalent on campus, it became clear that McGill needed to reassess the protocol for dealing with these student gatherings. In order to get a better grip on how students and staff feel about dealing with these events, a series of “Open Forums” have been organized. In the words of the Dean of Arts, Christopher Manfredi, the goal of these open forums is

to “reassure freedom of expression, and peaceful assembly on campus.” Held in Moyse Hall, the Dean of Arts welcomed any-

to reexamine current protocol, and make sure any ambiguities are cleared up in a manner which does not infringe on the stu-

biguous issue of protesters concealing their identity during protests. This issue was promptly vocalised by a Jamaica native en-

The goal of these open forums is to “reassure freedom of expression, and peaceful assembly on campus.” one to express their views and opinions on past events, and the course of action needed to handle them. Dean Manfredi explained that an advisory group has been set up in order to improve protocol, and to better understand how to implement a more efficient course of action following protest or assembly. This advisory group’s purpose is

dents’ right to peaceful assembly. These open forums are meant to further inform this advisory group and the administration, and according to Dean Jutras of the faculty of Law: “provide and participate in an open dialogue concerning events on campus”. In this first open forum, many questions were raised for discussion, including the am-

gineering student, among several points he made during this open forum; “... if they’re concealing their faces, they are unsure of what they stand for... they are cowardly... How could they bother their fellow students, coming into safe places like a library? Security and administration were like sitting dogs...” In particular, he raised the issue of bureau-

cratic nuisances; as he saw these consultations as “pointless”, and that administration was “disconnected from the students”. During this forum, this engineering student was the only student who truly vocalised his views, going as far as telling Dean Manfredi “... You guys have made this campus tense and miserable!” Issues such as the current ambiguity in the disciplinary measures, possible revision of the student code, and the notion of controversial speakers were all raised as well. Although the outcome was slim, this first “Open Forum,” seems to be a step in the right direction from the McGill administration, towards better understanding students’ demands, and dealing with student assembly more efficiently.

Uniiverse: The Sharing Economy McGill graduates launch platform for collaborative living April Wu Staff Writer


f you could borrow a drill for free, would you buy one? Didn’t think so. Offering postings such as item sharing, dog-sitting, making cupcakes, and even random acts of kindness, Uniiverse is the go-to place for people to explore their city in a whole new way. “Uniiverse can be best described as a free online market place for offline activities and services,” says Montreal City Manager Céline Junke, who was President of the MUS for the 2010-2011 school year. The website allows users to offer their services or activities and monetize their time, skills, or assets. Using “Trust Scores” calculated by host reviews, mutual connections, and common interests, the platform “helps you reconnect in the real world safely,” states the website. It is free to sign up for Uniiverse and the platform generates revenue on a transaction basis by charging those who purchase the services listed on the website a small service fee. “There is no advertising on Uniiverse because we want to make users’ experiences genuine. Advertising takes away the authenticity,” Ms. Junke commented. Ben Raffi and Craig Follett, both Engineering majors with a minor in Business, who met while working at Boston Consulting Group, founded Uniiverse in early 2011. After realizing their vision to create March 2012

The new Uniiverse website allows users to experience their city in a whole new way

a platform for collaborative living, they quit their jobs at BCG, developed a business plan, and worked with Uniiverse’s current CTO, Adam Meghji, to develop their dreams into reality. Uniiverse focuses on major cities such as Montreal, Toronto, Boston, and San Francisco with the help of City Managers and Ambassadors. “As ambassadors, our job is to get people hyped about Uniiverse, using social media and other marketing avenues. We want to build a strong sharing economy through Uniiverse in our schools and cities,” explains Akash Venkat, Uniiverse ambassador and Neuroscience student at McGill. Through guerilla marketing, establishing a strong presence in social media, organizing events, and Ambassadors driving up listings on the platform,

Uniiverse is targeting a younger demographic. It is intended for those who want to enhance their living experience and share their passions. Awareness of Uniiverse has been growing at an exponential rate. The website has been featured widely in the press, including Forbes, Mashable, and The Globe and Mail to name a few. The Uniiverse crew in Montreal are currently planning contests and collaborating with Right to Play to host a Mont-Royal run in March. With only ten full time staff, Uniiverse has successfully established a trust-based sharing economy. Using Uniiverse, anybody can become an entrepreneur with a simple click of the sign up button. In a world where online sharing is king, you can be your own boss. The Bull & Bear

Hugo Margoc and Alvira Rao, News Editors



Some Like It Hot Desautels students return from the Five Hot Cities of the World Tour to the ‘Rainbow Nation’ Raphael Linois Staff Writer


fter last year’s undeniable success in India, the Desautels Five Hot Cities initiative once again presented positive results after a group of thirty MBA and undergraduate students came back from their ten-day trip to South Africa on February 26th. Along with meeting government officials and local executives, the students aimed at renewing last year’s philanthropic focus with the Ubuntu Education Fund. This year could mark a watershed for the program as it scales up its fundraising goal from $10,000 to $20,000. The students employed a social media-based communication campaign, similar to that employed last year, to raise funds. In an effort to trigger word-of-mouth popularity, the campaign developed on Facebook, Twitter and an official Blog. When creating the Five Hot Cities Tour, associate business professor at McGill, Karl Moore, wanted to provide management students with an opportunity to go out of their classrooms and come to grips with the “hotbeds” of the 21st century real economy. Only recently did the program take a philanthropic twist under the leadership of MBA students Melanie Walsh and Jummei Yeo. The group shared their trip with peers back in Montreal through regular online posts. They first stopped in Munich, Germany, where they met BMW executives to discuss competitiveness. The trip then continued to Johannesburg, Cape Town,

The Five Hot Cities of the World team

Pretoria and Port Elizabeth, where participants gained fresh management and cultural perspectives through interactions with local executives. In each city, students met with “knowledgeable and impressive [executives],” says Alexia Belisle. They notably met with World Cup Organizers, Johannesburg Stock Exchange executives, and the CEO of Anthonij Rupert Wine. Thanks to this firsthand interaction with local business leaders, students understood the unique features of the South African emerging economy, centered on the themes of national competitiveness and sustainability. The trip took its philanthropic turn in Port Elizabeth, as students interacted with the Ubuntu Education Fund, where 100% of children are infected

or indirectly affected by HIV. According to Walsh, Ubuntu is “not only working for a great cause, but [also] redefining the non-profit business model,” by working as a company and by the depth of its mission. Participants unequivocally praise the journey as “enlightening,” and “humbling,” according to U3 student Belisle. The Five Hot Cities group learned about micro-knowledge of the non-profit world, macro realities of emerging economies, and the cost of poor government. They also made interesting observations about the South African economy and culture; according to Belisle: “What struck me the most was the ‘first-world mentality’ of the local South African population”. Professor Moore adds: “You go there with your African stereotypes,” only

Manuella Djuric

discover how different it is; “It rattles your cage.” Desautels has shown that it has understood the competitive imperative of increasing its global outlook by promoting such initiatives and stressing the idea of corporate social responsibility. However, Walsh points out that, as of March 2nd, donations amount to only a quarter of the initial goal, with the campaign ending on March 5th. Although these results are to be accounted for by lower corporate sponsorship, with SNCLavalin being the sole sponsor, the message seems not to have gotten across with individual donors, despite the social media campaign undertaken. With this in mind, the group met to figure out solutions on Saturday, March 2nd. Walsh explains, “You need to allow time for your con-

tent to go viral.” After Saturday’s meeting, the campaign may be extended. Professor Moore believes that the trip was successful in “creat[ing] a lifetime interest in Africa” in the minds of participants. After four years of operation, the program has become virtually completely student-run, and finally seems to have become well rounded in both its academic and philanthropic dimensions. Walsh hopes that the program will expand and appeal to a greater number of altruistic McGill students in coming years. As future business leaders, it is high time we develop “worldly mindsets” to appreciate and respect cultures of diverse business centers of the future world economy because, as Professor Moore says, “your career will be taking you there.”

limited use of pepper spray. Just before, protestors could be seen aggressively charging barriers meant to limit their movement and throwing large balls of ice at the police. Throughout the standoff, one officer explained that the methods used were meant to disperse protestors, eventually forcing them to evacuate the area. He added that no notice of the strike was given to the police, making the demonstration unlawful and threatening the security of the surrounding area. Despite this, ambulatory services were on hand to provide medical attention to protestors. By 2: 10 pm, workers who had been kept away

from the protest since its beginning returned to the Loto-Quebec building. Soon afterward, the last of the remaining protestors were pushed south towards President Kennedy and down Rue Bleury to Rue St. Catherines. This comes as one of many demonstrations “planned for the coming days and weeks” according to the students’ pamphlet. The Bull & Bear continues to monitor this story for an official count of the number of arrests made and injuries incurred. It has been confirmed that two arrests have been made and one conscious protestor had being escorted to an ambulance.

Sherbrooke Occupied by Riot Police Protesters demonstrate against social injustices Daniel Sorek Staff Writer


tudents living in Carrefour Residence at Sherbrooke and Aylmer were treated to quite the surprise this morning. Woken up and asked to leave the building due to a fire drill, students found themselves amid an even wider group of several hundred students occupying key parts of Sherbrooke to block the entrance to the Loto-Quebec building. The group, which claims to represent over 125,000 students on strike in a pamphlet being March 2012

circulated, decried the Quebec Premier Jean Charest’s decision to increase hikes in student fees. The pamphlet further explained that due to Charest’s steadfast refusal to respond to student demands, the group had decided to occupy a building housing two important government groups: Loto-Quebec, the agency that generates government revenues through lotteries, and the Conference of Rectors and Principals of Quebec Universities (CREPUQ). The former, they explained, aids the government at the expense of the many who are addicted to gambling and coerced in to suicides. The latter is

a group supporting an increase in tuition despite paying university officials “exorbitantly high salaries.” As proof, the pamphlet pointed to Concordia University Rector Frank Lowy’s respective yearly salary and monthly living expense of $350,000 and $3000. By 12:00 pm, riot police were called to the scene to monitor and control the group of students who flanked Sherbrooke and Rue President Kennedy between Aylmer and Rue City Councillors. At around 1:45 pm, riot police began to forcefully push the protestors west towards Ave du Parc primarily through the use of sound cannons and the

The Bull & Bear

Monthly Markets


Mohammad Awada and Ivan Di, Markets Editors

The Canadian Investment Banking Market Debriefed


wo thousand and twelve is going to be a busy year for Canadian firms. According to a survey conducted by PWC released in late February, CEOs have a bold agenda for this upcoming year, with 66% of them anticipating changes to their companies’ strategies. Plans include the use of traditional M&A, restructuring, joint ventures, and strategic alliances as tools to yield growth. According to the report, 25% of Canadian companies plan to engage in M&A activity, compared to a global average of 12%. The aforementioned statistics reflect Canada’s growing presence in the global M&A market. In fact, in 2011 Canada represented 10% of global M&A deals by value, up from the previous high of 7% back in 2007. With the makings of a transformative deal execution environment in Canada, it’s important to assess the domestic investment banks that stand to profit. RBC Capital Markets—the investment banking arm of the Royal Bank of Canada—is by far the largest player among the Canadian firms. RBC has total assets of $655 billion, and of its net revenues, their Capital Markets division represent 21.3%, or $5.9 billion. RBC ranks near the top in almost all areas as seen by the chart below: Magid Awad Staff Writer

in the Quebec market. They participated in more than 150 new bond issuances in 2010, ranked as the 8th largest underwriter of fixed income securities in Canada in 2011, and over the past 3 years have consistently been ranked among the top 3 debt underwriters in the Quebec market. Notable deals this past year include their position as Co-leader in a syndicate of underwriters that entered in an agreement with Homburg Canada Real Estate Investment

Magid Awad

Magid Awad

It is clear that RBC has a firm footing in many of the different product areas accross the Canadian market; in Canadian Corporates Debt Underwriting, they have maintained the number 1 ranking for nearly 10 years. On a global level, RBC has done quite well this past year, ranking 11th on Thomson Financial Investment Banking Fee League Table in 2011. BMO Capital Markets has had a great year in 2011. According to Thomson Reuters estimates, the firm had a 21% increase in fees in 2011, in great contrast to the average global 6% decrease. Additionally, BMO Capital Markets has been named the World’s Best Metals and Mining Investment Bank by Global Finance Magazine for a second year in a row. This reputation is reflected by their position as leading equity underwriter by market share in the North American Mining industry:

Trust to purchase 9.65 million “units” on a bought deal basis at a price of $11.40/unit. As the Capital Markets division is in high growth phase, Desjardins has acquired a strong team of top talent individuals to spur growth in that business segment, which resulted in a relatively top-heavy employee structure when compared to other banks. Notable hires include Martin Labrecque, the current Managing Director of Fixed Income Sales, who joined Desjardins in 2006 after working for J.P. Morgan’s Fixed Income desk for several years. Additionally, Pierre Morin, Managing Director and Head of Fixed Income, joined Desjardins in 2006 after his time with Goldman Sachs in Toronto, and Antoine Avril joined in 2010 as the Managing Director of Corporate Banking with several years of experience in London working for Deutsche Bank. For CIBC World Markets, the wholesale banking arm of CIBC, the big story in 2011 was the fact that it ousted Goldman Sachs & Co. to become this past year’s Canadian M&A leader. CIBC advised and worked on 38 lucrative deals, including advising Equinox Minerals Ltd. on its sale to Barrick Gold Corp. The top M&A dealers in the Canadian 2011 market are listed below: Scotiabank Global Banking & Markets, the investment banking division of Bank of Nova Scotia, accounted for 16.5 percent of the banks total revenue this past fiscal

Magid Awad Magid Awad

Notable activity in 2011 included BMO’s position as Lead Underwriter in FrancoNevada Corp.’s $340 million equity issuance, done on a bought deal basis. TD Securities, the investment banking division of TD Bank Financial group, is another dominant player in the Canadian market, and is the second largest domestic bank by assets, with $557.2 billion. Their Investment Banking and Capital Market operations represent 7.94% of their net revenue this past year, or $1.73 billion. Below is a quick overview of where TD Securities ranks in the major product segments: As an equity underwriter, TD increased their standing in the Canadian market dra-

Magid Awad

matically, as the total volume of arranged offerings increased from $3.2 billion in 2010 to almost $6 billion in 2011, propelling them to become the top Canadian equity underwriter this past year. This was the first time they topped industry-wide equity sales, dethroning RBC Capital markets, which claimed the top spot in 4 of the past 5 years. Some of the deals that helped TD climb the rankings included their co-leading of Intact Financial Corp.’s $962 million offering, and their involvement in Lone Pine Resources Inc.’s $195 million IPO in late May 2011. Desjardins Securities is a smaller player in terms of overall investment banking business, but it is growing, and has consistently been able to maintain a strong presence March 2012

year. It maintains a strong presence in the Canadian Corporate bond market, ranking in 3rd with a market share of 15.7% in 2011. In regards to equity underwriting, it lags the main five banks for 2011, but not by much, as the difference between 5th and 3rd place for in 2011 is only 0.7%. Overall, Scotia maintains a solid position in the Canadian Investment banking industry, consistently ranking in the top 5 across product categories. Globally, there is cautious optimism for M&A activity this year. According to Bloomberg’s Global M&A Outlook poll, experts cite “weak economic growth and sovereign debt issues as significant potential obstacles to deal making in the coming year.” However, attractive stock valuations and huge cash stock piles present an opportunity; with inflation in Canada and the US hitting 2.3% and 2.9% respectively in January, much higher than the low returns offered in liquid low risk securities, North American companies definitely have an incentive to invest. In Canada, high commodity prices and record levels of liquidity on balance sheets could prove to be a catalyst for domestic firms to engage in M&A, especially out west, as large energy firms strive to improve their competitive advantage by acquiring smaller, more specialized companies. It is also very important to consider the US market, as 45% of the Canadian CEO’s surveyed in PWC’s Annual Global CEO Survey said they are looking outside of Canada. According to the Bloomberg 2011 Annual Mergers & Acquisitions Legal Advisory Rankings, the “concern about sovereign debt was identified by about 25 percent of survey respondents as the biggest obstacle [to deal making].” However, recent developments in Europe, although not a silver bullet, have seemed to calm the highly volatile markets. Increasingly, it seems investors are less worried about the extent to which the US economy is exposed to Europe; according to economist Paul Krugman, total US exports of goods to Europe is just 2% of GDP, or 2.5% including services, so a sharp fall in exports to Europe would be only a small direct hit to demand. As for the other form of indirect exposure that is a concern, counterparty risk, the ECB’s vast liquidity injections via their longer-term refinancing operations, or LTRO, has Continued on Page 7 The Bull & Bear

Mohammad Awada and Ivan Di, Markets Editors

BANKING (CONT’D FROM PAGE 6) allowed banks to plug their funding needs, and thus has greatly reduced—albeit not eliminated—the risk of a Lehman-style global liquidity crisis and credit crunch. The increasing divergence between the performance of the S&P 500 and the performance of the Bloomberg European 500 Index seems to reflect these statistics, and suggests that investors are beginning to recognize that the US economy is not as sensitive to Europe as thought before. With markets reflecting optimism over the main issue that was curbing M&A activity in 2011, 2012 offers an environment that fosters deal making in the US, and thus one that tailors well to Canadian firm’s international expansionary goals. With the aforementioned catalysts in Canada, and the market-reflected decreasing sensitivity to Europe, all signs point to a busy year for Canadian firms, and thus Canadian investment banks.

Monthly Markets


Tata Group: The Corporate Juggernaut of the Developing World Maximilian Feinsot Staff Writer


n a 50-50 joint venture with Starbucks Corp. announced last month, Tata Group, India’s forerunning conglomerate, promises to further expand into the rapidly burgeoning Indian consumer market, and eventually around the world. The deal between Starbucks Corp. and Tata Global Beverages would also allow Starbucks to expand its brand into India while serving Tata Tea in Starbucks coffee shops. Tata Group, founded by Jamsedji Tata in 1868, employs over 400,000 employees worldwide and has 114 subsidiaries, 27 of which are publicly listed companies. The group operates in eight business and industrial sectors including the automo-

tive, steel, and telecommunications industries. Tata Group also owns the worldwide hotel chain Taj Hotels and Palaces. Tata Motors, originally a locomotive company, is now well on its way to being one of the world’s leading automobile manufacturers. With the acquisition of the Korean company Daewoo and the 2008 acquisition of Jaguar and Land Rover from Ford, Tata Motors has cemented its reach outside the Indian Subcontinent. Boosted by growing sales in China and the release of Land Rover’s new model, the Evoque, Tata Motors saw its quarterly profit increase by 41% to 34 billion rupees ($690 million). Tata Motors’ stock price increased by 60% in India over the past year thanks largely to its investments in Jaguar and Land Rover. Tata’s largest subsidiary, Tata Consultancy Services, gener-

ates 20% of India’s information technology exports. Best known for its business process outsourcing, TCS contracts for dozens of worldwide corporations including Sony, HP, and Chrysler. TCS accounts for half of Tata Group’s employees and is the second largest private employer in India. Another subsidiary, Tata Global Beverages, producer of products such as Tetley Tea, will likely see a significant expansion of its brand thanks to the Starbucks-Tata deal. According to the agreement, Starbucks will open up outlets in Taj Hotels as well as in Tata’s many corporate centers. With Starbucks setting up shop in the major Indian cities, Tata’s Tea and Coffee will be consumed by a greater portion of the Indian population and perhaps allow Starbucks to offer Tata beverage products worldwide.

Tata Group’s rise to prominence in the flourishing Indian economy

Though Starbucks is hoping its joint venture with Tata will help propel its brand into the Indian market, Tata also stands to gain by partnering with the multinational coffee giant. In Tata’s quest to make its goods available in the worldwide marketplace, Starbucks will likely prove to be the perfect vehicle for Tata to achieve its goal.

Investment Bank League Tables: Size Matters Henri-Luc Carlin Staff Writer


rofessor Hammami repeatedly declares that the financial industry is a very competitive field, and investment banks are no exception. An ongoing debate continues on which bank is most prestigious or which one has better culture, but there exists one characteristic that actually can be quantified: deal volume.

are not collectively exhaustive in these rankings as multiple banks may advise on any particular deal. Nonetheless, these figures allow us to gauge who the main players were over a period of time. We can also observe that only one of the Big 5 Canadian Banks made it to the top 20 in 2011: RBC Capital Markets. Coming in 23rd place on an international level was BMO Capital Markets. CIBC World Markets made it to 27th place, while TD Securities came in 33rd and Scotia Capital

Year-to-date, the dollar volume of transactions is up by 78.32% relative to deal flow in 2011’s fourth quarter A bank’s deal volume is the sum of the prices paid by the acquirer on all M&A deals the bank advised on. While league tables could be used to compare and gauge investment banks’ M&A activity and performance, they also serve as a good basis for bragging rights. Keeping in mind that there was a slowdown in M&A activity during Q4 of 2011, we can see that the top tier Bulge Bracket firms dominated the scene in terms of dollar volume. It is important to consider that market share figures March 2012

made 34th place. In terms of deal volume, the M&A market was up by 3.95% year-over-year relative to 2010. While the 2012 figures do not necessarily reflect on this year’s deal flow, as the year has just begun, it remains encouraging for the Canadian Financial Markets to see two Canadian banks placing in the top 20 so far, TD Securities and Scotia Capital. This can mostly be explained by the $3.96B Pembina – Provident deal that both firms advised on, which gave them a solid lead early

Henri-Luc Carlin

The international league tables for the calendar year ending December 31st 2011

in the year. Year-to-date, the dollar volume of transactions is up by 78.32% relative to deal flow in

2011’s fourth quarter. Hopefully we will witness a recovery of the EU and American economies in 2012, which could translate to

a sustainable increase in global M&A activity across the boardpositive news for all of us eager finance interns. The Bull & Bear


Monthly Markets

Mohammad Awada and Ivan Di, Markets Editors

Brazil’s Recovery: At What Cost? Siddarth Mishra Staff Writer


hrough the last decade, Brazil has been one of the world’s fastest growing economies with an annual growth rate over 4%. It recently overtook U.K. as the sixth largest economy in the world. It was one of the last countries to be affected by the global recession of 2008 and one of the first to recover, posting an annual growth rate of 7.5% in 2010. However, the economy cooled down to the estimated level of 3% growth last year. This was mostly attributed to the raising of interest rates early in the year and the spread of the European Debt crisis. As a reaction to this slowdown, the Central Bank has cut the benchmark interest rate from 12.5% to 10.5% in the past 6 months. Analysts expect the central bank to continue this trend and further cut interest rates to a minimum of 9%. Further policy measures to boost the

Siddarth Mishra

Brazil’s Interest Rate from February 2011 to January 2012

economy include reducing taxes on key consumer goods and reducing restrictions on foreign capital investments in equities. These policies call into question the Central Bank’s commitment to controlling inflation. Since 2005, the Central Bank has had a target inflation rate of 4.5% plus or minus two percentage points. Yet, in August 2011, when the inflation rate was at 6.9%, the bank cut the interest rate by 50 basis points. While analysts expect these policy chang-

es to boost the GDP growth rate to 3.3% this year, they also believe that the inflation rate will stay well above the target level at around 5.3% despite the recent trend of decrease in inflation levels. The Brazilian Central Bank, however, is more optimistic. Central bank President Alexandre Tombini has pledged to slow consumer price rises to the 4.5 percent midpoint of the target range this year. The economy’s recent “below potential” growth has opened up space for further

interest rate cuts without stoking inflation, Tombini said earlier this month. The bank also defended its monetary policy by arguing that inflation over the past year was boosted by one-off factors, such as big rises in municipal bus fares and a shortage of ethanol (widely used as vehicle fuel in Brazil). Brazil’s well documented battle against inflation in the 80s and early 90s resulted in the autonomy of the Central Bank and a monetary policy that targeted

inflation. However, recent indications suggest that the Central bank, perhaps influenced by the government, is giving priority to sustaining growth and controlling the value of its currency over inflation targeting. If the problem persists, it could become a political pitfall for Ms. Roussef ’s government. The lowest inflation rate during her regime has been 5.99%. For a country that has battled hyperinflation in the past, a regime that cannot achieve its inflation target will be criticized, no matter what the growth rate is. Quantitative easing has its merits and the Central Bank has a right to be concerned about stagnating growth levels. But when prices are soaring, the logic behind such aggressive monetary policies have to be questioned. The Central bank’s forecasts for inflation (4.5%) and growth rate (4%) for 2012 are optimistic to say the least. However, not meeting these forecasts could be politically dangerous for the government.

Before You Pop the Champagne: What You Should Expect in 2012 and Onwards Fei Qi Staff Writer


ewton once said that for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. Well, we’ve already been kicked and tossed by the reaction, that is, the market meltdown, for the past three years. Yet, by all mean, has this opposite reaction, or reversal, reached in force and magnitude compared to that of the catastrophe that caused it? While I hate to be the one who spoils the party, it seems as though 2012 might not going to be all sunshine and rainbows as we hoped. As everyone knows, Europe is facing a recession coming from the sovereign debt crisis and the continued credit crunch, as well as the lack of fiscal coordination. Central and Eastern Europe will experience real economic downturn on the consumer side. Many economists such as Gary Shilling and Nouriel Roubini expect major bank failures in 2012. Meanwhile fiscal austerity will turn a mild recession into a severe one. The US should remain cautious as 27% of its financial exposure comes from the Eurozone. Private and public sector deleveraging has only just begun, conMarch 2012

The Bear is waiting, till the Bull finishes his entertaining

sumer have yet to start saving, which is the prologue for increasing consumption or demand. Excess capacity remains high due to overinvestment in many countries, particularly manufacturing investments in China, making companies reluctant to take out cash for necessary capital spending and hiring. Unemployment and rising inequality reduces aggregate demand and pushes the world into social and political unrest, posing additional economic risks. Policymakers are running out of options: monetary policy has become ineffective, developed countries are no longer facing liquidity problems but more of solvency concerns. Although

we have seen a drop in unemployment rate to 8.3% and positive growth in non-farm jobs in the January employment report, the tally does not include discouraged workers or part time workers who are looking for full-time jobs. Also in January, job cuts grew to 28%. If many key tax benefits and stimulus programs are allowed to expire as government seeks fiscal austerity measures, we could be looking at a 9.2% unemployment rate with a GDP growth of 1.1% in 2013. Political procrastination will continue to cause instability as we move further into 2012. Inadequate fiscal policy in the US could derail the recovery, and the failure of the

Supercomittee to find a solution to the US deficit will bring major automatic spending cuts that will eliminate the prospects of a true recovery in 2013. In addition, as Bill Gross of Pimco pointed out, economic growth has been heavily dependent on the growth of credit; therefore recovery of the global economy seems difficult given a zero interest rate environment, which hinders credit-fueled growth. So far, we have not seen any major restructuring programs put in place that will encourage real structural economic growth, and with no credit, we are not likely to see any soon. Although many look to China for the solution, China’s economy could be in trouble as well. Falling property prices and the waning construction boom will have negative impact on investments and government revenue. The weakening of the Eurozone and US economy causes decreasing net exports while domestic demand in China has not proven strong enough to make up for the amount of exports lost. The soft landing that we hope for may be difficult to achieve given the speed of the chain reaction and the extent of its impact. Even if a soft landing is achieved, the Chinese economy may become too soft to recover. Japan’s weak government actions and failure

to implement strong structural reforms will hinder recovery and growth. Latin America as well as China will be exposed to lower commodity prices while political turmoil in the Middle East causing high oil prices will continue to limit global economic growth. A measly 3% growth is expected for the global economy in 2012. Although the chance of an Israeli strike is predicted to be 25%, oil prices could rise to $300 per barrel, which could stop global recovery and growth altogether if not cause a more devastating recession. Having given my argument for a bearish outlook on the global economy in 2012, many may ask why have we seen a market rally up until now. There may be several reasons. Institutional investors tend to put their cash to use during the beginning of each calendar year. Investors may be switching out of emerging and European markets and into US financial assets for safety. Expectations may also be high among investors that QE3 will be put in place later this year. Either way, the rally in the stock market that we been looking at lately may only be a temporary phenomenon, and the bullish sentiment may only be a reflection of no more than a strand of hope for a new start. The Bull & Bear

Mohammad Awada and Ivan Di, Markets Editors

Monthly Markets


Myanmar: the Western Influence on an Emerging Frontier Alan Vergel de Dios Staff Writer


he country of Myanmar—located in Southeast Asia—has yielded extremely sluggish growth despite its resource-abundant land and geostrategic location being situated between China and India. For five decades, the political state has been governed by a military dictatorship with tight reigns and little to no transparency choking the potential of a country with so much intrinsic value behind its vast reserves of rice, minerals, oil, and natural gas. However in recent years, the political junta has loosened its ironclad grip over the region and allowed a civilian government to operate through a parliamentary structure. As a result, the West has rewarded these political shifts by lifting sanctions to help industrialize this laggard economy. Before investors can propel this domain forward with foreign capital, Myanmar must display its integrity to continue on its political path as well as its ability to maintain favorable political relations with China, its economic crutch for the last half century. In large part due to mishandling by the autocracy, the region has plummeted in ranking from one of the richest countries in Southeast Asia during its British colonial era to the bottom of the global food chain. By open-

Myanmar is bordered by China, Laos, Thailand, Bangladesh and India

Myanmar’s miniscule economic footprint on the global scale starkly contrasts against its outsized political impact ing its borders to international trade, experts forecast that GDP growth should double year-overyear improving to 6% in 2012 as the impacts of political reforms take shape. Exports alone are expected to grow around 30% this year as the country embraces the funding of the Western world, improves its infrastructure, and

takes center stage in the rice exporting business. Hailed by sources at the IMF as the “next frontier”, major political figures as well as big-league investors such as George Soros have visited the region in hopes of securing their piece of the pie. While Myanmar is undoubtedly poised for a much-needed overhaul,

Chinese involvement provokes trepidation as the constituency represents a significant pivot point in the political struggle between East and West. By slowly gravitating to the pull of the West, China’s concerns stem from impending encirclement by US allies including Japan, Australia, and India with the

last link bounded by Myanmar. Chinese politicians also fear the weakening of bargaining power in global diplomatic agents such as the World Bank and IMF as the West gains another supporter. With Chinese political clout and military strength reaching unparalleled momentum, countries in this region are strongly inclined to form close relations with the US and its allies to preserve their autonomy. Although unlikely to serve as the straw that breaks the camel’s back, Myanmar will do little to pacify the tensions between the two schools of political governance. While the economic benefits of the transition are tangible, the governing figures at Myanmar have contradicted themselves multiple times throughout history. Still a distance from political liberalization, the country’s by-elections in April function as the next test of commitment as a major opposition party leader is expected to sit in parliament. As Myanmar turns its back on its strongest economic and political link from the last fifty years, China must step aside if it hopes to maintain its benign relations with the US and Europe. Myanmar’s miniscule economic footprint on the global scale starkly contrasts against its outsized political impact. The country’s diplomatic steps in the right direction should serve as a prime example for nations around the globe that are currently repressing their political uprisings by bloodstained means.

Embrace the Year of the Bull: 2012 Christian Sullivan Staff Writer


hen it comes to the US economy, good news has been in short supply in recent months, but things are finally looking up. With the economies of Canada and Mexico doing well, and the effects of the preemptive measures of the Federal Reserve panning out, the American economy is rallying once again. American stocks have been on the rise, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average closing above 13,000 for the first time since 2008 on the 28th of February. These gains bring the index’s current rally to five straight months, which is the longest since last April. In addition to the Dow, the S&P 500 is also experiencMarch 2012

ing good times. February’s 4.6% increase is only the latest portion of a 6-week, 7% gain since the New Year. This sets the S&P 500’s rally to 3 months – it’s longest in a year. The gains have generally been widespread, with seven out of ten groups in the S&P and 23 of the 30 stocks of the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index advancing. The market appears to be regaining confidence, and indexes seem poised to rise. Even the aptly nicknamed “Dr. Doom”, Mr. Nouriel Roubini, is starting to turn bullish. With regards to the force of the latest S&P rally, Gina Sanchez, Roubini’s director of equality and allocation strategy was quoted by CNBC saying: “We’re a believer; we’re celebrating. We think the rally has legs.” The proof is in the profit. Early last month, in his annual letter to shareholders, Berk-

shire Hathaway’s Warren Buffett stated that he was optimistic with regards to the coming year. “Though housing-related businesses remain in the emergency room, most other businesses have left the hospital with their health fully restored.” Berkshire Hathaway posted record profits in 2011, and is set to do the same this year. President of the Federal Reserve Bank of St Louis, Mr. James Bullard, believes that betterthan-expected employment data proves that the country is in solid recovery. “I am more bullish on the economy as a whole. I do think we have momentum coming out of 2011,” he said during a Bloomberg News interview. In January, the US jobless rate fell to 8.3%, the lowest since February 2009, as payrolls climbed more than was expected. Even the most optimistic Bloomberg survey has been exceeded,

Better than expected economic news will continue to drive the bull market higher

with 243,000 new jobs created; the largest increase in 9 months. These figures suggest that perhaps the Fed’s unemployment projections will be beaten by year’s end. With the exception of the

housing sector, which is still in a tough spot, the American market as a whole is looking up, with employment figures improving, and record rallies that had almost been given up to myth and legend reappearing once again. The Bull & Bear
























3rd year: 25.6%



2nd year: 29.1%




4th year: 20%

1st year: 20.7% 5th year / grad school:














of our survey respondents

LOST THEIR VIRGINITIES between the age of





34.8% 3-4 TIMES/WEEK 13.1% NEVER DO IT























49.5% WOULD NOT 19.6% DON’T KNOW


59.2% 6-8 INCHES 9.9% +8 INCHES 7




10 11 12




21.3% PREFER







43.2% 5.7% 7.2%




18.3% PREFER





All photos taken by Jean Moirez, Ed Yao, Nicole Himelfarb and Kunal Shah



Chris Conery and Kristine Pinedo, Lifestyle Editors

Let’s Talk About Sex

The Bull & Bear’s look inside your bedroom

Sean Leslie Staff Writer


rom Sue to Ron Jeremy, sex is something we all do. Kim Kardashian does it with basketball teams, Lindsay Lohan does it both ways, Chris Brown does it hands-on, and now apparently, you all do it too. It seems that these days the only people not having sex are the Jonas Brothers with their purity rings and Courtney Cox with that whole ‘I’m still not over my ex’ drab, which is unfortunate, because I hear that revenge sex is totally the best kind. The Bull & Bear recently asked for a sneak peek inside your bedroom. Despite the survey being completely voluntary, more than 650 of you were willing to lay it all on the line for us. We appreciate it, and according to you, that is not the only ‘laying’ you have all been up to. Our findings tell us that just under 50% of you are having sex in public, 84 of you have made sex tapes, 237 of you would engage in group sex, and apparently, width is your biggest priority. I would have a few choice words for you, but I have learned to reserve judgment ever since Tina Fey proclaimed in Mean Girls that we have “got to stop calling each other sluts and whores!” As far as “taking virginities” goes, I am really unclear as to which category I find more concerning: the 31 of you that have taken more than 3 virginities, or the 48 of you that simply do not know. If you even come close to losing count, it might be time to reconsider your target demographic. March 2012

I have to say, however, that none of you are really my concern. I have a bone(r) to pick with whoever came up with the questions for this survey. For starters, why is the question asking about a desire to engage in group sex one of the few questions with an “I don’t know” option? Sex is not always a “straightforward” topic (…no matter how much we sometimes want it to be). Nevertheless, I stand alone apparently, as an undisclosed friend wondered why that option was even there. Then again, she furiously wanted to know why ‘no’ was also an option and why ‘20+’ was the last benchmark for total sexual partners, so go figure. I just cannot help but think that group sex is not the kind of activity you should be planning on undertaking. If you have to think a threesome through, it is probably not going to turn out the way you have always imagined. But that still does not mean you can’t throw caution to the wind and your keys in a bowl at the front door and never speak of it again the next morning. Group sex is not the only place I take issue. Your own opinions on bondage are another thing that you just do not always want to have to think twice about. There is the obvious ‘no’ option on our questionnaire (… prudes), but if you don’t select no, where do you draw the line? I mean, if a light spanking is okay, is it not also okay to handcuff a ‘lover’ naked to the monkey bars behind your old elementary school while you suit up in leather? Unclear, but at some point, you are just going to have to stop and ask yourself: if someone showed up at your door with

anal beads and a headlamp, are you the kind of person that is going to ask some questions? Say, for instance, what’s up with the headlamp? Are my overheads not bright enough for you? On top of that (or maybe under it), I feel as though the sex tape question covers a lot of territory. It is relatively safe to say that if someone agrees to have sex on camera, they are not going to disapprove of much else. I know this is McGill and we are having a total ‘progressive’ moment right now, but sex tapes and naked pictures are not okay under any circumstance. First of all, becoming a celebrity is never out of the question. You just never know, and even though it sparked a Kardashian-sized fire, it does not work for everyone. Think Paris Hilton, who was last seen searching for BFFs in Dubai… not chic. Second and most important, you really never know who could send those saucy snapshots back to you in an uncomfortable JibJab e-card. Trust me, even the Valencia effect on Instagram won’t make your nipples look good next to a Christmas elf. All in all, this is not an advice column. In fact, we were the ones asking the questions. But if I can impart any wisdom on all of you, as much as we like to talk about the birds and the bees, you should really just keep it inside the bedroom, or the shower, or the kitchen island when your roommates are out, but no further. Let’s face it; there is nothing sexier than a lady in the streets and a freak in the sheets, so no matter how freaky you like to get behind the scenes, keep it classy on stage. Oh, and of course, don’t be silly… wrap your willy. The Bull & Bear

Chris Conery and Kristine Pinedo, Lifestyle Editors



Montreal Tu M’Allumes A Look at the Montreal High Lights Festival Gabriel de Vuyst Staff Writer


hanks to the Montreal High Lights Festival (Montreal en lumière), reading week is a great time to be at McGill, despite the bubble’s transformation into a ghost town. From February 16-26, this city featured a yearly cultural festival of the arts. For eleven days Montreal is a prime location for new discoveries and adventures, as it showcases original culinary art and incredible performances. As one of the largest festivals in the world, tourists flock to this city, coming together with locals to experience the beauty and excitement offered by the Quebec winter. The Montreal Highlights

Festival celebrates artistic and gastronomic delights from a different area of the world each year, this year highlighting the Belgian regions of Wallonia and Brussels. The setup for the festival transforms Place des Arts into a work of art illuminated by bright and colorful lights with LED panel stages, multicolored dance floors, interactive boxes, and a Ferris wheel.


The festival has a unique gastronomic concept coupling the skills and know-how of Montreal’s finest chefs with culinary masters from Belgium. This event’s tickets range from $60 to $70 which is, unfortunately, not student friendly. However, it is certainly an excellent way to experience Belgium’s foreign deli-

cacies right here in Montreal.

The Arts

From modern to classical music, from dance to circus arts, Montreal en lumière gives a taste of the many aspects of Belgian culture. Similar to the culinary events, the theme of collaboration is echoed as famous bands and musicians from Montreal perform alongside famous Wallonian and Bruxellian performers.

Outdoor Adventures

Some of the more student friendly parts of the festival are the outdoor activities with their energetic atmosphere and feefree entrance. Along with the traditional live performances and organized activities, this year brought new cheap, gourmet eats

boasting delicious snacks. Treating yourself to some mouthwatering Belgian foods at the outdoor bistros, soup stands, Baraque à frites, and the Maison du chocolat were all more than a good reason to visit the festival.

Nuit Blanche

Nuit Blanche is one of the main nights of the festival with the metro running nonstop and free of charge from 6pm until 6am. This year it fell on February 25th and covered a huge portion of the city; everywhere from downtown, to the Plateau MontRoyal, to the Old Port of Montreal. This night provides the opportunity for people to discover Montreal by exploring its most beautiful sites as well as by enjoying circuit artist performances like storytelling, visual arts, films,

Daichi Ishikawa

The Montreal High Lights Festival took place February 16-26

exhibitions, comedy and more.

Snow Village Montreal’s Winter Wonderland Emily Barber Staff Writer


now Village opened its gates on January 6 in Montreal’s Parc JeanDrapeau. It is a recreotourism project, seeking to satisfy the demand for outdoor winter activities in Montreal. The Village includes a 30 room ice hotel, heated outdoor spas, a 60 seat restaurant, a 250-seat bar, a conference center, and more. Although Snow Village is new to Montreal, the concept has been successful in Europe for the past decade and was discovered by project promoters Carl Fugere, Yanick Tremblay, and Guy Bélanger on a trip to Finland. Finnish brothers, Rami and Tomi Kurtakko are the originators of the Snow Village concept and have visited Montreal to personally oversee the creation of this city’s version of the winter wonderland. This is the first time their idea has ever been imported to Western soil and they hope to create the first ever ice hotel chain. The Montreal creators’ vi-

sion for Snow Village is to replicate a different city of the world each year through its design, sculptures, and activities. It seemed only fit to showcase Montreal for the village’s inaugural year. Symbols of Montreal around the village include replicas of Saint Joseph’s Oratory, the Olympic Stadium, and the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. Additionally, a number of the hotel suites are themed on Montreal culture. One suite features an ice sculpture of the Stanley Cup with a Maurice Richard jersey frozen into the wall above the bed, while another pays tribute to Cirque de Soleil. Although spending the night in Snow Village may sound like fun, it is certainly not for the faint of heart. Rooms are kept at below-freezing temperatures ranging from -2 to -5 degrees Celsius. In -5 degree sleeping conditions I would advise against bunking with anyone short of a best friend or significant other as your comfort will likely depend upon their body heat. Rooms come equipped with thermal sleeping bags; however, covering your head is discouraged as your

Snow Village Montreal

Snow Village opened its gates on January 6 in Montreal’s Parc Jean-Drapeau

breathing will lead to an unfortunate damp awakening. The price of bunking at Snow Village is quite steep, ranging from $195-$299 per person. Nevertheless, this unique winter attraction is worth a visit and available for the student rate of $13 on weekdays ($15 on weekends), perhaps during the almost intangible pause between midterms and finals. Snow Village will remain open for visitors through March 31, 2012 and is a three-minute walk from the Parc Jean-Drapeau metro station.

MUSBullandBear The Bull and Bear Visit for all your SSMU elections coverage. 9 hours ago

March 2012

The Bull & Bear



Chris Conery and Kristine Pinedo, Lifestyle Editors

Faculties Segregated by Fashion McGill’s Subcultures are clear for all to see Emily Rubin Staff Writer


hile there are many subdivisions of the McGill student population, we all stand united in our common air of superiority held over Concordians. The hope would then be that we stand strong in our convictions and remain proud as one community, but that rarely seems to be the case. Our little corner of the world is dominated by interfaculty diversity that is much more apparent than simply the buildings to which we are banished. Today we wear our faculties quite literally on our sleeves. Once we remove the great equalizers that are Canada Goose jackets, and Ugg boots or Sorrels, we get down to the nitty gritty of it all. While these categorizations are not absolute, the fashion differentials within each area of study can be more or less generalized to students in the faculties of Management, Arts, Sciences

& Engineering, Environmental studies, and “everybody else.” Here is the breakdown: business students are undeniably the suits of the McGill world. Trapising about in blazers and button downs, the Bronfmanites tend to outdress the professors and even those who hold the future jobs they so desperately covet. On a

bo-chic look. Shopping almost exclusively at Urban Outfitters and American Apparel, this skinny jean and lace-up boot wearing, elbow patched clan like to keep their looks very à la grunge with 1980s school picture hairstyles. Prideful of their supposed habit of shopping second hand, they will rarely admit their price

to conceptualize an outfit (let alone a shopping excursion), this stressed bunch of students pays no mind to anything aside from GPAs and the volunteer work that “is so meaningful and fulfilling and has nothing to do with getting into Med School or getting a lab job.” A rather controversial “fash-

Once we remove the great equalizers that are Canada Goose Jackets, and Ugg boots, we get down to the nitty gritty of it all non-presentation day, when formality can be taken down a few notches, this lower-McTavish crew deck themselves out in name brands from head to $350 covered toe. No matter what the nature of the outfit, it tends to marry the notions of attempted prestige and parental bank accounts. Arts students opt for the ho-

tags. They claim that their wardrobes consist exclusively of Village des Valeurs, Salvation Army, and of course, their grandfathers’ closets. The scientifically inclined among the McGill student population spend their days in cozy sweats, hoodies, or t-shirts and jeans of high school days past. Lacking the time or wherewithal

ion” segment lies in the Environmental Studies students. Clothing decisions made by this group begs the question as to whether or not they even change out of their pajamas before trekking down to campus. Spending a large portion of their time at the farm that disguises itself as the MacDonald campus of McGill, these students seem to forget

that once they enter the Downtown campus, they have re-entered civilization. The future psychologists, lawyers, and the like tend to follow normal 18-25 year old attire. They dress to be comfortable, but looking presentable is not overlooked. They have their denim days, but can be spotted in sweat pants during midterm season. Sporting an overpriced designer item is certainly not out of the question, nor is a hand-me-down shirt. These students are best known as the most appropriately dressed segment of the McGill community. This group can often go unnoticed for their lack of distinction among the more dominant subcultures at McGill. So, next time you find yourself at a McGill party, refer back to this handy “who’s who” of the student population. That way, when you’re standing beer in hand, you can toss aside the pleasantries such as “What do you study?”, and skip right to the part you’ll regret the next morning.

The Future for U0 Bronfmanites Insight on the new U0 Program Claire Llewellyn Staff Writer


fter a one-year course approval process, this year’s BCom U0 class is the first to participate in the mandatory courses BUSA 100: Introduction to Management, and BUSA 250: Expressive Analysis for Management. The need for these courses was first presented in 2005 after a restructuring of the U0 program. This agenda restricted U0s from taking any of the then 18 mandatory core courses. This year’s U0 courses were largely an MUS initiative brought fourth by MUS VP Academic (2009-2010), Diana Pirri and MUS-appointed UPC representative (20092010), Bronwyn James. Pirri explained that as a U0 affected by this restructuring she “had very little exposure to management course content the Bronfman building, or [her] peers.” Morty Yalovsky, Associate Dean Academic of the Faculty, leads BUSA 100. The course dynamically targets a variety of management subjects through expert, professional guest speakers. Similarly BUSA 250, as coMarch 2012

ordinated by Lindsay Holmgren of the English Department, is intended to instruct students on business writing and speaking styles in order to pave a path to effective communication both at McGill and in the professional sphere. The courses are intended to be flexible and interactive and, as such, have received varying opinions from students, teachers, and the creators. The need for these courses is perhaps best demonstrated by U0 students’ lack of exposure to what management really means before they begin their studies. Professor Yalovsky expressed that he was “disappointed by the fact most people had never read a popular management book.” The new course attempts to provide a stressfree environment with no final or required note taking where students can benefit by simply learning. A participating U0 student, Sorin Olaru explains, “it doesn’t hurt to learn a bit more about a field you already know or discover one you didn’t know anything about.” Nevertheless, the BUSA 100 course has hit a major obstacle as a collaborative and active learning environment is considered

less pragmatic by many students. The “no-stress” approach has caused students to give less effort into the program. Yalovsky explained that management students are “goal oriented” and have difficulty finding direction in such a free-form course.

signments, and a participation grade. U1 student Karim Habbari who was not given the opportunity to take this course expressed that this “is clearly a great opportunity to practice and become more at ease” in the Desautels and management envi-

Even native English speakers can benefit from lessons in clarity, diction, and Global English

Moving forward, Yalovsky plans to add more structure, update assigned books, and refine the goals of speakers. Students taking BUSA 250 are met with a higher level of structure under the direction of English professors, weekly as-

ronment. Holmgren believes that “absolutely yes,” all students can benefit from this course. For her, BUSA 250 has well-intended benefits aimed at helping a student’s career. “It’s important to remember that each linguistic

choice we make has consequences,” Holmgren says. “For each reader we persuade, there might be others whom we alienate, so we have to take those potential sacrifices into consideration.” Accordingly, even native English speakers can benefit from lessons in clarity, diction, and Global English. In the classroom environment Holmgren tries to foster, “admitting that you don’t know what something means is essential.” In respect to future years the benefits of these courses will surely prevail. Pirri explains, “It requires an effort [on the professors’] part[s] to keep the course material relevant and engaging. This is not a static course like Intro to Accounting where debits and credits will always be debits and credits… the course must constantly evolve to continue to meet its objectives.” Through Mercury course reviews, students can have an active hand in the future of these courses. Great benefits are expected for future U0 students; as these new classes are perfected, they will be more integrated into Desautels’ culture and have greater management knowledge starting in their first semester. The Bull & Bear


Chris Conery and Kristine Pinedo, Lifestyle Editors


Contemplating The Gondoliers The McGill Savoy Society presents The Gondoliers April Wu Staff Writer


enice is known as one of Europe’s most romantic destinations largely due to its canals and floating gondolas, beautiful Gothic architecture, and the mysterious masked carnival. “The Floating City” is also the perfect setting for the McGill Savoy Society’s 49th production: The Gondoliers; or, The King of Barataria, which opened on February 10th at Moyse Hall. The McGill Savoy Society specializes in Savoy operettas which denotes a style of light, comedic opera, pioneered by W.S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan in the late 19th century. Operettas are often considered the antecedents of modern musicals. The McGill Savoy Society may not have originated in the Victorian Era, but they are the oldest universityaffiliated G&S troupe in Canada. The President of the Society, Laura Chuang, describes the group as “students coming from all walks of life, G&S aficionados,

McGill Savoy Society

McGill Savoy Society performers on stage

and above all, entertainers.” And entertain they did. The Gondoliers is a romantic and

comical mystery involving a pair of dashing Gondolier brothers, Giuseppi and Marco Palmieri.

The two brothers are confronted with the news that one of them is the long lost King of Barataria and married by proxy to Casilda, daughter of the Duke of PlazaToro. However, the brothers were betrothed to their sweethearts, and Casilda’s favor had already been won over by the drummer boy, Luis. In classic Gilbertian style, the convoluted situation was wrapped up by one simple revelation, and a happy ending was achieved for all. A prominent feature of this play was the strong presence of the chorus. Gilbert & Sullivan chose to make all the principal roles as equal as possible in The Gondoliers to create a truly ensemble show. “In preparing this production, our lovely, talented cast, has thrown themselves wholeheartedly into the collaborative spirit,” noted director Emma McQueen. Although the chorus was in perfect harmony, some of the lead actors still owned the spotlight. Stephen Baker’s mellow baritone could melt any Venetian young lady’s heart. His blond curls and Adonis-like fea-

tures were perfect for the role of Marco Palmieri. Mathew Galloway’s portrayal of the brave, handsome, and sometimes-daft Giuseppi was convincing, but he lacked a certain presence on the stage. With his saunter and ability to spew out lyrics quicker than Jay-Z, Marc Ducusin stole the show as the Duke of Plaza-Toro. The McGill Savoy Society caters to a niche market of theatergoers, and so those who are used to modern music theater may not be as entertained by their performances. However, it was clear that the show was a labour of love. With perfectly choreographed dance scenes, larger than life costumes, and a gorgeous set, The Gondoliers was pure eye candy. February is theater season, and it reminds us of how active our theater community is. It is a wonderful thing that McGill has room for such diverse productions, anything from The Gondoliers to The Vagina Monologues. We should take advantage of all the shows, so I encourage you to sit back and enjoy a new musical theater experience.

4to7 and BDA McGill’s favourite Thursday afternoon Happy Hours Dan Novick Staff Writer


t’s Thursday afternoon. You’ve just finished classes and are looking for something fun to do all in the name of the weekend ahead. For many Management students, 4 à 7 is the first stop on their journey. 4 to 7, or 4 à 7 (just don’t say “four à seven”), has a longstanding tradition of being the place where Management and some other students unwind after their long four day week because we all know how difficult it is to have a three day weekend, every weekend. “4 à 7 is really just an extension of the great time I have with the Bronfman Basement populace, just with beer and music for a short three hour period,” notes former Bull & Bear Executive Editor Alex Pajusi. For three hours almost every Thursday, Bronfman basement abandons the usual academia. Cold one-dollar Boréale flows freely, and grilled cheese sandwiches are dished out by the 4 to 7 committee. Pours are perfected again and again as eager students try to inch their way up the side March 2012

Jean Moirez

Students enjoying 4to7 in the Bronfman Basement

of the line to taste that first drop of cold refreshing Cuivrée. Lucky for the McGill population, Bronfman is not the only place you can find Boréale and grilled cheese on a Thursday evening. The Arts Lounge, a part of campus described by many

Management students as ‘outside Bronfman,’ hosts the same amount of students, or more, in a spot that is three times smaller. Bar des Arts (BDA) makes for a more intimate, not to mention sweaty environment. The music is louder, and it runs two hours

longer than 4 to 7, all the way until 9pm! Like 4 to 7, BDA serves as a great destination to catch up with friends and make weekend plans. The two Happy Hours have been McGill traditions for years and are both entirely student run.

The 4 to 7 committee consists of a team of eight Management student who are responsible for determining the necessary amount of beer and then submitting an order to the MUS. Every Thursday, they receive the beer shipment and unload it in Bronfman. BDA is run by three volunteer managers, and the rest is handled by AUS VP Events, Jason Karmody. They have more staff than 4 to 7, and recently hired more servers. While both are student bars, they differ in the vibe they offer. 4 to 7 is frequented by the traditional Management crowd, those who you see everyday in Bronfman, while BDA typically has students from a range of faculties in a smaller venue. Pajusi notes, “BDA, by comparison, sports a more eclectic feel that allows me to escape the ‘office party’ environment of the Bronfman Basement. It’s a bit more diverse in many respects, which I as a management student really appreciate.” Both venues offer a refreshing escape from day-to-day McGill life and an exciting start to the weekend. The Bull & Bear



Tarun Koshy, Opinion Editor

Editorial: Age Of The Anon The Bull & Bear Editors


f you asked anyone thirty years ago what they thought about mass mobilization, it would be natural to expect a derisive, bitter debate on university students living in idealistic worlds. Yet the last year has shown two unique developments: mass mobilization is no longer limited to young, “flower power,” tie-dye clad kids, and that this new phenomenon has fangs. Take the recent – and infamous – interest bills presented to Congress early this year: SOPA and PIPA. As explained in the article, “SOPA’s Slippery Slope”, the bill essentially proposes sweeping permission to take down any website deemed questionable for piracy. The backlash of this bill came from concerned citizens reacting to an infringement on their fundamental rights. Behind every major corporation is a tax-paying member of society. Hence, when giants like Google and Wikipedia threw visible support behind the antiSOPA movement, it was more

Mike Licht

Mass mobilization has rallied under the Guy Fawkes mask

than just playing the fame game for publicity – it was a representation of the constituents’ voices. Those very same voices would be deciding who gets re-elected to the positions of power in the US and around the world. Ultimately, with no rioting, physical protest or chanting, the Congress bill lost backing one by one until it was shelved for “revision.” Supporters, with real financial incentives to back SOPA, had to face

the reality that voices held more power than just 140 characters. Perhaps the most poignant representation of this movement is the Anonymous network. Quite literally impossible to identify, track or represent, this group of unconnected individuals have managed to coordinate virtual attacks that result in real damage. When the FBI took file-sharing website Megaupload down on January 19, 2012, Anonymous

responded by taking offline the FBI, CIA, RIAA, and Universal Music websites. Anonymous has also influenced the course of the Middle Eastern uprisings, taken on a Mexican cartel and the Syrian government. What is unique about the group, however, is the lack of identification – literally anyone can be an “anon” without any identification required. Granted, there may in reality only be a small, dedicated few who run these networks, but the open-access indicates that anyone has the power to cause both change and damage. That annoying neighbour who always makes noise? Could be an anon. That guy who always sleeps in class? Possible anon. But, like all new approaches, mass movements are not the ultimate tool and they carry weaknesses as well. Looking at the Occupy Wall Street movement, those who had had enough of business as usual were given much-needed voice. However, rather than pressing the issue, it ultimately digressed into a mess of personal politics, ambitions and unrealistic demands. As such, while its inception sparked

worldwide support, the end failed to change anything due to its watered-down direction. McGill’s own recent occupation of the 6th floor experienced similar results as some of the issues raised lost any support or legitimacy due to the way such power was misused So it seems that those elected to power no longer have a four-year carte-blanche. The sad realization we have come to is that governments do not always serve and represent the interests of the people. Yet this new phenomenon has shown that outcry is no longer limited to the extreme few who can be ignored. In fact, those demanding change now have the big stick with which to hit the family jewels where it hurts. The way society functions has experienced a subtle yet influential shift that will require power players to consider the broader effects of their actions. But a word must also go out to the new wielders of mass mobilization: group movement is not free reign to bring out personal ambitions – eventually the tide will go out and you’ll be caught swimming naked.

Heart Over Matter Why our EQ is just as important as our IQ Ali Khan Staff Writer


ne day – a day that will come all too soon – you and I will wonder about what our generation gave to the world. Did we cause a revolution? Did we create the utopia that existed only in our ancestors’ imaginations? Did we save the planet? Amongst these grand questions will also be the more underlying

from one another, it strikes me that these aren’t independent occurrences at all. In fact, they’re not even separate occurrences. These stem from the very same fundamental change in society – that ever since the renaissance, we’ve begun to value rationality over emotion without fully appreciating the ramifications. Ever since, experts in logical inference and mechanical thinking have become the new gold standard of intellectualism while those of us who think in more

Why is it that the powerful institutions of the world place reason on a pedestal so high above emotion and passion? movements experienced in our age: the increasingly popular notion that religion is nothing more than a man-made institution to control the masses, the ideas of casual intimacy, career over family and other such lifestyles. While appearing quite distinct March 2012

airy, vibrant ways have been relegated to leagues of the mutated melting pots of style that has been influenced by fringe movements of the post-war era. More appalling still, is the fact that too few people question the basis of such celestially romanticized ap-

preciation of the rational mind while emotional expression is continuously undervalued and discredited. But really, why is it that the powerful institutions of the world place reason on a pedestal so high above emotion and passion? Perhaps more importantly, why did I have to suffer through Higher Level Math in the International Baccalaureate after all? So let’s start with how exactly we would define reason. There are a few derivatives floating around but I’d say it’s the human capacity to make sense of occurrences through mechanical processes such as calculation, prediction, and analysis. Emotion, on the other hand, is an experience with no set goal or process; it’s a state of mind that exists as our unique and largely unparalleled reaction to our own biological selves and the environments we come into contact with. Indeed, it seems a far more natural phenomenon. Here already, I would argue, you have enough information to accredit emotion as a tool more useful - or at least one that should be used more often - than reason in our daily decision-making. Everyday we

Alessandra Hechanova

EQ plays just as important a part as IQ

make decisions that rely on the integrity of our rationality when our gut says otherwise. Quite often, our intuition and rationality say the same thing and when such a decision is a successful one, we pat rationality on its fat, overfed back and hand it another Twinkie while emotion sulks in

the deep crusted corners of our overused and often worn minds. No one can ever tell you that your emotions are not as valid as their own towards a situation because your feelings and reactions towards a thought are a result... Continued on Page 17 The Bull & Bear


Tarun Koshy, Opinion Editor


Life, Luck and Linsanity: The Perfect Trio What Jeremy Lin can show about luck and skill off the court Avi Rush Staff Writer


t seems talent just isn’t enough anymore. No matter how intelligent you are, how hard you work, or how talented you are, sometimes you just need to get lucky. Jeremy Lin, the current point guard for the New York Knicks, is enough proof of such luck. Easily talented and extremely hardworking, the former third string point guard and D-league player lucked into the starting line on February fourth and has never let go since. In four games as a starter, the next Knicks’ messiah has averaged 27.2 points, 8.2 assists, and all Knicks wins. Some might argue that it’s more due to the lack of ‘Melo, but that’s for another article. Nonetheless, the fact of the matter remains that, with 109 points, he has scored more points than any other new starter in their first four games - includes his “Royal Airness,” Michael Jordan. This guy’s got game. And he works pretty hard too. While Kobe’s work infamous work ethic gets all the main publicity, the former head coach of the Golden State Warriors, Keith Smart, says Lin does likewise and probably helped him when he dropped 38 on Bryant at the Lakers on February 17th. He’s also a Harvard graduate, and from the rumors, they almost work as hard as us over there. Almost. So the real question becomes: Is this guy for real? My fantasy basketball league definitely thinks so; the second the Knicks game ended he was picked up off the free agent list. ESPN #NBArank originally ranked him 467th in August and now has him anywhere between #223 and #40. Of course, with Amare’s and ‘Melo’s return, both his usage rate and production have dropped significantly. But how did someone with such apparent talent languish as a proverbial benchwarmer for so long? Lin believes it’s because his game is based more on his court vision and intangible skill, not flashy athletics. It takes a longer view of him for scouts to realize the true extent of his potential. And given the short-term views NBA scouts have of college players as well as the shorter-term views college scouts have of high school players, his talent set is not easily noticeable. It probably doesn’t help that he’s Asian-American, and recruiters haven’t really looked March 2012

D. Yang (Flickr)

Lin’s skyrocketing NBA fame doesn’t truly appreciate the challenges he faced

for a successful Asian-American in the NBA since Yao. As much as the US lauds itself as a glorious melting pot, infusing various

So, if someone with his ability wasn’t recognized early on in the court, what chance do people like us have in our daily lives?

He has scored more points than any other new starter in their first four games - including his “Royal Airness,” Michael Jordan cultures and ethnicities, it seems NBA scouting is still in the bland cheeseburger-and-fries stage of correlating skill with race.

Malcolm Gladwell, the author of Outliers and writer for the New Yorker, discusses the sheer arbitrariness of factors that can affect

one’s success in his or her field. For example, there is a disproportionate number of Canadian hockey players born in the early part of the year. At a young age, junior hockey players are segregated by birth month, yielding noticeable differences in size and skill from an otherwise insignificant time period. These junior players are noticed and selected for better coaching, giving them higher chances to be selected into even more elite senior leagues. Thus, the small arbitrary differences in birth date cumulate to a massive difference in success on a large scale. Lin was never noticed at a young age, and as a result of the cumulating cuts, number of times he was waived, and other factors, was probably held in disbelief of his talent and roster potential. With all this to consider, one must wonder what minor differences could create such a discrepancy between success and failure. For example, if one should show up 15 minutes earlier to the second floor of Bronfman, maybe there would be an available carrel spot. That extra study time in a quiet study space perhaps helps you finally understand a difficult concept, one that turns out to be the major component of the next midterm. That midterm could be the difference between an A and an A-. Or a B+ or B for that matter. Extrapolate this scenario over all five courses and a semester GPA could be significantly boosted by just 15 minutes per course. Regardless of whether my parents really believe I couldn’t study because the libraries were full, and of how unexaggerated that statement really is, it sure makes me wish that Bronfman had more study carrels or even tables instead of all the empty space on the second floor for “cocktails.” While starting out about basketball’s “Linsanity,” I chose to finish this article ignoring Jeremy Lin and discussing the random minor acts that can have a drastic affect on our lives. Well that’s what he gets for hitting the game winning three against my hometown Raptors at the last second. And who knows? Maybe that last second shot will cause opposing defensive coordinators to take note and actually make their players guard him, as happened at Miami right before the All-Star break. All I know is that I’m definitely going to start waking up 15 minutes earlier to get to Bronfman in the morning.

EQ VS. IQ (CONT’D FROM PAGE 16) of the experiences and memories you’ve gathered in your lifetime. Emotion creates millions of truths. It achieves a level of customization based on the individual that corporate marketers dream of selling to and is a reaction that you can always trust as being true to what you actually think, where you’ve been and where you come from. I mean, after all, you don’t really have much control over what you feel. Reason, is not quite like that. I could deny and even disprove your take on rationality. Theoretically, if reason was to be applied perfectly and we were all champions of the rationality, we would all come to the same conclusion if given the same information. But this doesn’t take into account how different we are from each other and thus, couldn’t possibly make sense. Just the concept that the same decision could work, would work for every individual on the planet in a given situation is preposterous but here we are, believing it. This whole time we’ve been placing reason opposed to emotions (I think that notion comes from rational and irrational soul from Plato and Aristotle) which is why we often claim that our emotions led us the wrong way. It seems to me that reason is actually a bit of a slave to our emotions. It’s an arbiter between conflicting desires, at best. It seems our emotions control reason. Emotion’s not such a nice guy after all; he’s a bit of a bully, really. Actually, according to David Hume, “reasoning that allows someone to pretend that the object of their desire is demanded by logic alone is called rationalization”. So what do we have here? Our rationality works on our emotions’ orders and yet we test for reason to measure intellectual competency? In fact, here’s a beautiful contradiction; for my argument that emotion is a more useful way of knowing than reason to work, I don’t have to convince your emotions but appeal to your rationality. That’s what I’ve been doing this whole time. It seems the whole construct of competence in society is flawed. I don’t know when we’ll start to hire based on our EQ’s instead of our IQ’s, but I do know that hiring based pre-dominantly based on our rational competence is not the best way to go about things - something for our glorious future entrepreneurs to think about in between Facebook sessions. The Bull & Bear



Tarun Koshy, Opinion Editor

Campus Politics: One Size Does Not Fit All The dangers of politicizing the SSMU building Rohan Arora Staff Writer


s stated in the SSMU charter of November 2010, the new policy on equity aims for SSMU groups and services to hold a “strong commitment to equity, safety, and the creation of safer spaces for its membership.” Yet although SSMU’s democratic General Assembly allows students to voice their views, different groups on campus unfortunately tend to use this as a one-sided marketing strategy for personal politics. This was best exemplified in the SSMU motion from the Winter 2012 GA to commission a poster of Karl Marx in the Shatner University Center. The motion conceived that it would symbolize union power and the labor struggle – two themes that were said to be prevalent last semester during the strikes. However, the motion failed to realize the bigger picture and the effect it might have on the image of the body that represents over thirty thousand students at McGill. When students pay SSMU fees, they are, by extension, allowed to exercise their rights within the SSMU community.

Holly Sherlock

SSMU students vote at the Winter general assembly

Yet this important democratic right comes with a fair condition- that your opinions should not infringe upon the free space guaranteed to others. Looking at the controversies over the poster of Karl Marx, SSMU didn’t have the option to plainly reject the motion. According to interviewed SSMU directors, any motion maybe debated within the GA as long as it doesn’t violate the constitution of the body, and, more importantly, if it reaches the required consensus to be debated. Unfortunately, sometimes the healthy debate boils down to a battle of egos as students take the opportunity to ridicule others about their political standings, thus failing to honor and respect the sensitivities of some of the debated issues. According to one of the Board of Directors, a Canadian student of Russian origin stormed out of the assembly, offended by some

of the pro-Marxist rhetoric. As it turns out, the student’s family had been greatly affected by the early twentieth century advent of Marxism. But this is only one example. Implementing such polarizing political views within McGill would not only affect individual or minority students, but also

body.” Moreover, adopting a political philosophy that satisfies an active political group on campus contradicts the theme and purpose of SSMU to represent the wider student body. More importantly, it would only further isolate more students from the union and give them more reason not to voice their views about issues on campus. The tremors of such an action would also be felt on McGill’s funding through alumni and future students who no longer feel connected, represented or interested in such stances. No, I’m not saying we should try and tailor our views to suit groups not directly related to McGill, but a political philosophy on either extreme might

Different groups on campus unfortunately tend to use this as a one-sided marketing strategy for personal politics the entire McGill population to some degree. Sadly, we attend a university where only one in five students decide to express their opinions. As such, the voice adopted by this mere twenty percent should be wary of deeming itself “the voice of the entire

leave an undesired effect on our own alumni and future students. Although those trying to pass these motions may have reasonable logic behind their actions, they need to give more consideration of the circumstances. First, polarizing political

stances cannot be the bedrock of a student society. Although McGill students haven’t been active within SSMU issues in the past, they need to understand that the decisions adopted by SSMU would have a huge impact on themselves and their peers. SSMU isn’t at fault when it comes to the lack of students wishing to exercise their democratic rights. It must also be granted that every democratic society will have inevitable flaws which some will try and exploit. By the same virtue as the political stance votes, SSMU could technically flip its political view every general assembly through its democratic voting procedures. That is, every year a new political organization might try and change the image of SSMU or again try and re-politicize the SSMU building. However, should we allow this game of cat and mouse to keep continuing? We go to McGill, one of the most diverse universities in the world – nothing will ever be dominant or representative of a majority. I am certain that students can and should compromise to a mutual consensus rather than make grand pendulum swings between extremes. Such an outcome would guarantee members of our community a promised, “safe space.”

Post-Secondary Education: Where Paper Beats Rock How credentialism instead of character is turning us into “paper students” Alex Petralia Staff Writer


hat if we are paying for a degree that won’t pay back in the future? According to the New York Times, 9.1% of 2010 graduates in the U.S. are unemployed, and, among those who found work, half stated that their jobs do not require college degrees. Furthermore, their median starting salary was $27,000, just $2000 above their average debt obligations. With 85% planning to move back with their parents, these graduates have been bestowed the moniker “boomerang kids.” Growing up, the conventional wisdom of our time was to get good grades, go to college, land a well-paying job, have a family, and retire comfortably. Ironically, it is precisely the inflexible conformity to this route March 2012

that has left graduates vastly unprepared for when things were not working out as planned. We are a generation inheriting underemployment, debt and lack of direction. The financial crash of 2008 threw a once planned and

the table, put us through school and keep us in a safe neighborhood – all basic, respectable ideals. Schools discouraged fighting and bullying while the media preached equality, diversity and respect. But rather than teach-

perience were sacrificed in lieu of résumé-padding and a high GPA. A stark demonstration of this concept is where, one study showed, “30 percent of individuals…reported a year after graduating from college that they read

We never learned how to recover from failure because we were raised to never fail comfortable future into disarray. Student loans are no longer a last resort, but rather a necessity and, more importantly, a college diploma no longer guarantees a secure job. So what went wrong? The root stems back to the fact that we were born into an environment of extreme security, structure and certainty. Our parents worked hard to make sure there was food on

ing us about the world we live in and where it should go, we were only showed the idealistic side while being shielded from the inescapable hardships of life. We never learned how to recover from failure because we were raised to never fail. Learning was emphasized in the classroom of theory but never connected to the world of the practical. Most importantly, adaptability and ex-

the newspaper (in print or online) either monthly or never.” Economists now say we also face a skills gap. The Beveridge curve, an economic graph that plots the unemployment rate versus the vacancy rate, reveals an unusually inefficient labor market – a consequence largely due to skill mismatches. And it’s true: we lack the experience to properly perform the jobs we

seek. With technology evolving at a rapid pace, the theory regurgitated from the classroom is highly insufficient if barely passable for starting jobs. Our generation thus finds itself in an uncomfortable position. The implicit exchange – education for jobs – remains unfulfilled. The beliefs we once held are crumbling around us. Therefore, it is now that we must question and indeed challenge this predetermined life route. Rather than using a “study what you feel like” approach to university, students must leverage university to build a career, not the other way around. For their part, universities should also encourage selection of a career path, not a selection of nebulous interests. And failure should not be avoided, but encouraged as a learning path. We must recognize that our future depends more on who we are in person than who we are on paper. The Bull & Bear


Tarun Koshy, Opinion Editor


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Obama: Addressing The Elephant In The Republican Room Regardless of who wins, the Republicans are up against a behemoth opponent Tarun Koshy Opinion Editor


omney Wins Massachusetts. Santorum Wins Oklahoma. Newt Gingrich Wins Georgia.” As this article is being written, I receive religious email updates from the Wall Street Journal, advising real-time of the Republican nomination progress. Indeed, the night of March 6, 2012 marks an important date for American, if not world politics – the determination of a challenger to Democrat President Barack Obama and potential leader to one of the strongest global powers. Yet while Republican candidates and news analysts trumpet on about battles won in each state, the final war remains largely one-sided when compared to whom they are up against. In fact, it seems these Republican electoral battles may ultimately turn out only to be a pyrrhic victory in the end. Standing at six feet, one inch, President Barack Obama casts a towering figure. However, rather than physical stature (or birth certificates), the Republicans should be more concerned with how appropriate their grand intentions given the state of the US. As shown by online forums and Youtube video comments, it March 2012

is too easy to devolve into a “my dad is better than your dad” style argument without considering the deeper circumstances. Instead, look at whether each side is appropriate for the current circumstances. Take merely two examples; foreign policy regarding Iran and economic reform postrecession. In dealing with Iran, Republicans and Democrats tend to fundamentally differ on policy choices. On the Republican side, grand peacock shows of bravado avail as terms such as American valour, justice and international safety are bandied around. Succinctly put, the approach is loud and clear in saying that the US needs to assert itself as the world power once more and stand up to prevent danger. For argument’s sake, call this the hawkish approach – swift, powerful and ready to strike if needed. However, consider President Obama’s response to the Republican furor – a slower, more cautious and wary approach to war. In a Presidential Address, Obama responds by considering the economic and social costs of sending men and women to war again. From the language and tone used, it certainly appears that the Democratic President is wary if not weary of war yet still willing to use force if necessary. If the Republicans were hawkish, then one might call Obama’s approach

US Government

Current United States President hopes to win reelection in November

largely dovish in nature. So ignoring whether both sides are simply politically posturing to grand virtues or humble considerations, one should instead look at what is appropriate at this point: the US is just winding down a war in Iraq, soldiers are coming home, the economy is recovering and a damaged US society must now deal with the externalities of war. Also consider the positions of the candidates: none of the Republican runners have seen war, either personally or by extension of role. On the other hand, Obama has overseen

the Iraq occupation, Osama bin Laden’s hunt and the Libyan intervention. Naturally, one would expect that the Republicans resort to grand posturing so as not to appear weak-kneed. But at this point, is the American society ready for another war? Doubtful at best and, even if so, the energy simply is not there to incur as many losses. Therefore, the Republicans are either inconsiderate or simply ill timing their gusto and eagerness for hawkish posturing while the Democrat approach seems more in sync with American desires. The economic front, however, does not look so clean cut in victory. In fact, it is probably on the economy that President Obama will face the loudest critics. In lieu of the 2008 crisis and the ensuing Occupy Wall Street backlash, there is an unambiguous call for reformation if not regulation in the financial system – and indeed reformation is required. However, while President Obama strains and pushes for Wall Street reform, Republican candidates have instead decided to play to the popular tune and drag their feet on every move towards regulation. The motive behind their opposition rests on the belief that excessive reform will hurt the great, American competitive edge, turning a once great financial machine into a shell of its

former glory. Or worse, it might turn into a Canadian-style banking system form of regulation. But the fact of the matter remains that the economy is recovering from a downturn that was magnified by the banking sector’s leverage. Unemployment is at 8.3% and people are just short of pitchforks and torches. While Wall Street does represent an influential segment of voters, the Republicans place too much belief in pandering to this group at the expense of the rest of the population. At this point in the recovery, moderation is the key to success and rocking the boat only shows a lack of understanding the full situation. The time for radical rhetoric has passed and the Republicans need to now show more financial acumen. If this trend continues while running against Obama, any Republican candidate risks losing both Wall Street and the rest of the population. Ultimately, the current Republican platform is characterized by excessive posturing on just two important issues. Considering that they will be running against an incumbent president who is well versed in appealing to the masses through moderation, it would be wise for the Republican candidate to realistically appraise his stances and be strategic about his attacks. The Bull & Bear

Bull & Bear March 2012  

March 2012 Issue

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