"I have done crazy things," Holland says in the audio recording. "Like ... and if anyone repeats this I'll deny it (until) the cows come home ... I have gone to a shelter in the riding of St. Paul's with a carton of smokes and said, 'I'll give you them after you vote.' I have done that ... but they were already smokers."
In an e-mail sent to QMI Agency Thursday, Holland admitted she made the comments. But the veteran political operative insisted she never actually handed out cigarettes to potential voters.
Instead, she said she merely "pretended" to have used tactics that in fact she heard other political parties use.
"During a presentation to a partisan audience I got carried away playing to the crowd," Holland said in the e-mail.
Wow. Hey, don't the Liberals pride themselves on their "tough" anti-smoking strategy? Doesn't the Liberal war room boss have a huge problem with tobacco lobbyists?
Oh, but that's not all. The Liberals, still reeling from the fallout over their power plant mess, panicked again and sped up the implementation of a tax credit for home renovations for seniors, which will somehow lead to more jobs. Hey, maybe McGuinty's hand jive during the debate was a manifestation of how nervous and jumpy the Liberals have to be about the election result? Or else why would they be flipping the script with a week to go?
Let's hear from Adam Radwanski on these recent Liberal own-goals:
Then last Sunday, two days before the leaders’ debate and just as Ontarians were starting to pay closer attention to their provincial election, the Liberals handed the other two parties a gift. Promising to scrap a gas-fired power plant being built in Mississauga, they gave the appearance of panic – undermining the “steady hand at the tiller” pitch the two-term Premier has been making to voters.
Even seasoned political operatives wondered aloud at how the Liberals managed to let a fairly marginal local issue throw them off message for at least a couple of days. The answer is that they were guilty of making faulty assumptions leading up to the campaign, and then weren’t willing to live with consequences that would have involved hanging one of their strongest MPPs out to dry.
What else on this enchanted night? Well, we have proof the Liberals are using bots on Twitter. And then there was that hilarious story about how the Liberals met with the cast and crew of "Murdoch Mysteries" to brag about how they are spending money to support the local film industry. Trouble was? "Murdoch Mysteries" got cancelled. Oops.
And if that wasn't enough, here's another opportunity for a fun filled round of "What's Wrong With This Picture?" This one's real easy, since the last one gave the Eric Hoskins campaign team a lot to ponder. I know, thanks to my hit counter. ;)
Finally, it looks like the NDP are leading or competitive in some key ridings. Which ridings? How about Sudbury, possibly the safest Liberal seat in the north? Or York South Weston, which looks like it will be overrun by the NDP? Or perhaps even, randomly, Bramalea Gore Malton? Yeah, yeah, this thing was paid for by Sid Ryan, but it should put the fear of heaven into a few Liberals, and that ain't a bad thing!
Can it be that the Liberals have been....um...blowing smoke all this time that people were fooled into thinking they were running a credible campaign? :P
The retired politician, now in his 80s, popped up on the campaign trail at a Hudak event in Brampton, after which he playfully sparred with reporters and gave his party’s leader a thumbs-up.
“I thought he did quite well” in the debate, Davis said, adding he thinks Hudak is solid in his riding and beyond.
“I think he’s doing quite well in Brampton. I’ve been to several other ridings and I think he’s doing quite well. If you ask me to make predictions, I didn’t when I was running … and I haven’t started doing it yet.”
Jumping Jiminy Christmas, when does the crappy news end for Dalton?
Many critics have already consigned electric cars to history's scrap yard, even though those vehicles are only now starting to appear in showrooms.
Batteries, they complain, are too expensive; their range is far too short; they falter in cold or hot weather. The often-gleeful conclusion is that the technology is wasteful, a boondoggle, and will never improve.
A new study from Britain, although sponsored by a group that advocates for alternatives, the London-based Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership, seems to hand the naysayers some potent ammunition.
Of course you all know Dalton wants to bet the ranch on these jalopies?
"However, a terrible and devastating earthquake that killed thousands of people changed world sentiment from anger to pity. Could the Chinese government have actually orchestrated an earthquake to sway world opinion? They were shooting missiles intothe sky to influence weather patterns; why not trigger something underground to cause an earthquake?"
Boy, I sure hope the Liberal War Room Boss issues one of his "fire-this-candidate-immediately" posts soon. Or does that just go for NDP candidates in Niagara?
As the Oct. 6 Ontario election approaches a crucial leaders' debate next week, a major Canadian bank has downgraded its forecast for the province's economy, citing increasing economic concerns.
"Disappointing economic indicators, foreign governments grappling with fiscal challenges, and heightened worries about the health of the global recovery paint a picture of only sub-par growth for Canada," says a TD Economics report issued Thursday.
"This constrained environment must trickle down to the provinces as well. In turn, we have downgraded our provincial growth profile for 2011 and 2012."
The bank said it is lowering Ontario's 2011 GDP forecast growth to 2.3 per cent. In June, amid rosier signs, TD put that growth estimate at 2.9 per cent. All other provincial economies were similarly downgraded.
So....no link between the Liberals and the unions, eh?
But the presentation leaked to me shows that top Liberal campaign organizer — and fellow Sun columnist — [He Who Must Not Be Named] -actually made a presentation to United Association Local 46 — a plumbers’ union — where he pitched the idea that they should become politically involved.
The 28-page presentation laid out talking points about the record of the Mike Harris and Ernie Eves governments, and tied them to Tim Hudak.
The last two slides tell the union members to act:
“Not just a lawn sign,” it says.
“Contact your local newspaper. Submit letters to the editor. Open line radio shows.” It also tells them to get involved with social media.
“Use paid media, such as radio or television ads,” says the presentation.
It said, “politically-charged campaigns launched by other unions have been successful in the past” — pointing to the controversial Working Families’, “Not This Time Ernie,” campaign of 2003.
Premier Dalton McGuinty and the Liberal Party of Ontario should not be accepting donations from publicly owned or funded agencies including hydro utilities, the opposition parties said Thursday.
Elections Ontario documents show Thunder Bay Hydro donated the maximum amount allowed – $1,244.32 – to the local Liberal riding association last year, at a time when electricity rates are soaring as the province spends billions to rebuild its electricity system.
How strange. It looks an awful lot like Dalton's campaign is going to pieces, but for some reason this trend isn't being reported in the media. Hmmmm. Well, I'm sure the Star and the Globe will notice soon.
In a statement released Tuesday night, the Brant MPP said he “misspoke” twice.
"I confused a cap-and-trade program with a carbon tax. While a cap-and-trade system has been discussed, a carbon tax is not and has never been on the table. In fact, the premier has been clear and definitively ruled this out, permanently," the junior energy minister said.
OTTAWA — The centrepiece of the Ontario government’s green energy policy, the Feed-In Tariff (FIT) program, is “economically unsustainable,” says a former CEO of the Ontario Power Authority. Jan Carr, who was head of the OPA from 2005 to 2008, made the blunt assessment in a commentary released Tuesday by the Council for Clean & Reliable Energy, a self-described forum for “reasoned analysis” on subjects related to electricity policy.
The Ontario Provincial Police is investigating allegations of procurement wrongdoing at the Niagara Parks Commission. Bullet News has learned the Parks Commission’s own Niagara Parks Police requested the OPP look into the assertions in an attempt to ‘clear the air.’
Parks Police Chief Doug Kane confirmed he ‘recently’ made the call to the OPP, which is currently interviewing current and former staff members and current and former commissioners. “It’s not a secret that there has been a number of allegations made over time and rather than us investigating those we thought we would send it to a totally independent agency such as the OPP,” Kane said. “They have no connection to the Niagara Parks Commission and this will let them conduct their own investigation.”
All part of the plan, eh, Liberals? Stay tuned, right?
In case you haven't heard, Dalton's junior energy minister told webchat participants today that a carbon tax is on the table.
But didn't Dalton tell Ontarians, three times running, now, that he would not raise taxes? Yes he did.
Oh my. What a pickle. And it is in the media, thanks very much. So no, Liberal war room. You will not prevent this from getting out.
Significantly less damaging, but no less humiliating, was the reversal of a Sarnia-area Liberal candidate and Huron Bruce Liberal MPP Carol Mitchell on whether local jails would be closed.
Many questions surfaced surrounding the pending closure of the Walkerton Jail. Thompson committed the PCs to an "Economic Impact Study" to review the facts behind the reasoning and chastised the Liberals for stonewalling a Freedom of Information request into the figures governing the Liberals decision to close it. Robertson said it's a "yes or no" answer and the NDP party committed not to closing the jail, recognizing the 50 jobs that will be lost under the Liberal government and the funding lost to municipalities from prisoner transfers. He also said their's a need to tie in a regional addiction centre into the facility. Mitchell admitted there are "holes in the math" regarding the jail closure, but said her government is committed to keeping the courthouse open.
And just think! There's a whole one-half of an election to go!
Poor Dalton's getting tangled in the weeds. Maybe he should have left the green energy stuff to the perennially losing Green Party and then he wouldn't be in danger of sharing their electoral fortunes.
It seems that only 20% of the people who want to have solar panels on their roof are actually getting them, and even then the website makes it impossible to tell where we are in the development process. I mean, at this rate we'll never close all the dirty coal fired plants by 2014 like Dalton said we would!
Oh, but don't worry. David Suzuki still loves Dalton, right? I mean, Suzuki totally endorsed Dalton.....oh.
TORONTO – The Ontario Liberals have removed an online endorsement from famed environmentalist David Suzuki, as a result of an apparent political spat between the Grits and unnamed political opponents.
The endorsement seems to have disappeared over the weekend.
Oh, and, I don't want to give any Liberals heart attacks, but here's an article with the title, "Ontario NDP could hold balance of power in a minority government." Way to erase a double digit lead, guys!
How, I ask you, how can these Liberals keep finding news ways to shoot themselves in the foot? It's getting difficult to keep up with them. Even though Dalton took the day off yesterday, we still have a short, but sweet list to run through.
First of all, if you haven't read it yet, the PC Party has provided reporters with the deets regarding the cozy relationship between the Ontario Liberals and the Ontario Sustainable Energy Association. Liberals provide taxpayer dollars, OSEA provides supportive ads. Now we're not saying one hand is washing the other.....we're just saying it really, really, really, really, really looks like one hand is washing the other.
Then we have a column by Martin Regg Cohn in the Star where he - unbelievably- asks some tough questions about Dalton McGuinty's platform and vision. I do believe that if this continues, people may start to suspect Dalton can't be trusted. But the Liberal platform also has its share of fiscal backflips. My favourite is McGuinty’s plan to pay for his laudable $500 million tuition rebate partly by stepping up enforcement against contraband tobacco (worth $175 million). On the eve of an election, the Liberals conveniently inserted this “found” money into their platform and redid other budget projections to free up a total of $1.5 billion.
If these updated balance sheets don’t materialize down the road, how will the Liberals bankroll their tuition rebates and extra home care spending? The Tories warn that McGuinty will raise taxes, as he has after previous elections. The Liberal promise they won’t, just as they’ve pledged in the past.
"Just as they've pledged in the past." And does anyone remember whether the Liberals honoured those pledges? Hmmm?
While Cohn asks the question of "Where Are We Going?", Christina Blizzard in the Sun asks the question of "How Did We Get Here?"
Public sector salaries are out of control. With those salaries comes the ticking time bomb of cushy, defined benefit pensions.
Despite a stern finger-wagging from Finance Minister Dwight Duncan and a pledge to freeze civil servant salaries in the 2010 budget, only a handful of government workers actually had their pay frozen.
Ontario provincial police, got an 8.5% pay hike — a deal that has municipalities across the province up in arms, as they know it sets a precedent for their forces.
The government negotiated a secret deal with OPSEU that gave them 1.75% in 2009, 2% in 2010, 2% this year — and 3% next year.
And for those of you who feel Hudak is not being tough enough on Dalton McGuinty, well, check out this open letter where he tears Dalton a new one:
You have put Ontario families in a difficult position with the way you and your hand-picked Liberal appointees to the organizing committee have structured the finances of the Games. In addition to assuming responsibility for 35% of the cost of the Games, you made the Province of Ontario the guarantor for any deficits and cost overruns for venues. Now it has come to light that with less than four years until the opening of the Games there has been no progress on site selection, let alone construction of venues.
Central command assures me that tomorrow is going to be another tough day for Dalton and the gang, and you can be sure that the ever-popular screwup roundups will cover all of it. And hey, I hear some new polls are coming out that shows the NDP are starting to climb! What do you suppose that means?
These Liberal stumblebums are so incompetent that I could do one of these Liberal Screwup Roundups every day! And I think I will do just that!
By far the biggest festering sore on the disease-ridden Liberal campaign at the moment is the repeated attempts by Dalton McGuinty to show that green jobs are coming to our province by holding photo ops at solar plants that seem to close very soon afterwards.
You mean to tell me that, when people decided to look a little deeper beneath the surface of Dalton McGuinty's assurances that everything is okey-dokey and that green jobs are just rolling into Ontario, they found that it just wasn't the case? You mean to tell me that reporters actually did a little digging for a change instead of just taking Dalton at his word and found something worth reporting on? Stop the election, I want to get off!
Now how do I know this is wreaking havoc on the Liberal campaign? Because our old friend the Liberal War Room boss isn't touching it. He'd rather post old videos from the Toronto mayoral election. I just recommend that he doesn't drive through Eglinton Lawrence anytime soon, especially through the part of the riding that Mike Colle relies on to win, as he might get a little surprised at the high concentration of blue signs there.
Well, anyway, what else do we have to report on? Apparently you can pay your way to a space at the University of Toronto in Dalton McGuinty's Ontario. Here's the part of the article that really makes Dalton look especially bad. Since 2009, the Ministry of Education has received dozens of complaints about private schools inflating marks — at least three were about TCI. One complaint filed by a guidance counsellor last year involved an R.H. King Academy student who had math marks ranging from 28 per cent to 57 per cent. That student went to TCI for Grade 12 calculus and scored 84 per cent.
The ministry is responsible for inspecting private schools but oversight is lax. According to documents obtained through freedom of information requests, TCI was inspected at least four times between 2005 and 2009 and consistently failed to assess and evaluate students in accordance with provincial standards.
Nevertheless, the Scarborough school was allowed to continue operating and granting credits. Between 2005 and 2009, at least 651 students have obtained high school credits from TCI.
Over in the Ottawa region, we have proof that Liberal MPP "Wobbly Bob" Chiarelli is twisting PC Party Candidate Randall Denley's words. And down in Kitchener, embattled Liberal MPP Leanna Pendergast is lashing out at her own constituents.
Prepare for the worst, Liberals. You'll be sorry you underestimated us.
The solar energy company touted this week by Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty as a flagship of the province’s clean energy economy has halted production because of slow demand.
Mr. McGuinty was flanked by Eclipsall Energy Corp.’s workforce when he visited its Scarborough solar panel plant Tuesday, but there was no mention that the production line is temporarily shut down. When my colleague Tamsin McMahon visited the plant she found the reception desk was empty, the cafeteria was closed and only a handful of employees milling around inside the sparsely furnished building.
That sounds like colossal fraud. Speaking of fraud:
A taxpayer-funded environmental group is starting a television advertising campaign Friday that supports the province's green energy policy without registering as a third party, an apparent violation of the province's election finances laws.
The only party opposed to the policy is the Progressive Conservative party.
The two ads by the Ontario Sustainable Energy Association draw attention to the province's green energy policy, which offers rich subsidies to wind and solar producers who agree to strict domestic content provisions, and asks voters to support it in the election.
Rookie Liberal candidate Sarah Thomson learned a tough political lesson Thursday.
It’s never a good thing when your party leader is asked about something you said that appears to deviate from the campaign platform.
Thomson, the former Toronto mayoral hopeful now seeking to unseat veteran New Democrat Rosario Marchese in Trinity-Spadina, told the Annex Gleaner that McGuinty met with Toronto Mayor Rob Ford and she mused about the possibility of the Grits bankrolling additional child-care spaces in the city.
“It’s not true . . . it’s not true,” the Liberal leader said in Thunder Bay.
Sounds like Ms. Thomson is dragging down the Liberal brand! Speaking of dragging down the Liberal brand:
Niagara Falls Liberal MPP Kim Craitor is coming under fire from some of his rivals for not clearly stating his party affiliation on his lawn signs.
"Mr. Craitor, do you believe in what your party has done in the past four years and do you believe in what they are proposing in the next four years?" Progressive Conservative candidate George Lepp asked Craitor during a debate in Niagara-on-the-Lake Wednesday.
"And if so, why isn't there any indication on your signs of your party that you represent?"
Looks like the wheels are coming off the Liberal bus! That is, if the bus wasn't already a casualty of the war on the car.
Do you get the distinct sense that the Liberals have given up on the rest of the province? For the second straight day, Liberal Leader Dalton McGuinty refused to give into pressure from his rivals to participate in a debate on Northern issues in the sprawling region. The Progressive Conservatives even offered to pick up the tab for his travel costs.
Mr. McGuinty told reporters in Sault Ste. Marie on Thursday that the organizers of the debate invited him in early August to participate. He told them the date did not work for him but was not given an alternate time.
This sort of thing isn't being too well received in the North, as you might imagine.
That changed Wednesday, when the same Liberal staffers arrived at a morning press conference about sex offenders and handed out fake GPS bracelets wrapped in paper that read “Manufactured by Ontario PC cronies.”
The Conservative campaign took the bracelets as an insult to the people who agreed to discuss their concerns about sex offenders in their community, and pressed reporters to get the families’ opinions of the stunt.
If you were to read the Liberal platform- which nobody is- you would find a distinct lack of attention paid to the North, the Southwest, and the East. They're going to maintain a couple of development funds that really haven't done the job. Maybe that's why they're just not competitive outside the GTA.
Of course, the Liberals are just fine with a sea of blue being told what to do by a dot of red in the centre. Except, if they continue to write off the PC's like they've been doing with 3 weeks left, they might not even have that to console them.
OTTAWA — Dalton McGuinty says it’s the business community’s turn to pick up the “damn baton” and create more jobs for Ontarians.
Appearing before the Citizen editorial board Wednesday, McGuinty likened Ontario’s economic growth to a relay race in which the government has done its part by providing the best environment for business to thrive. Now, he said, it is the turn of the business sector to take the race to the next level and create new jobs across the province.
LEAMINGTON, Ont. - Liberal Premier Dalton McGuinty is now the lone holdout for a debate in northern Ontario, with the Progressive Conservatives accepting a challenge from the New Democrats to face off a second time ahead of the Oct. 6 vote.
NDP Leader Andrea Horwath has been pushing for a debate in the north for weeks, saying issues such as unemployment and the high cost of living in that area deserve their own turn in the spotlight.
So now we're going to hear a lot of boasting from the Liberals about how a poll came out- an actual poll- showing them neck and neck with us. I don't know why this is cause for celebration because what it should be telling them, and us, is that the electorate is volatile and it could go very, very badly for them if they break out the champagne at this stage and get lazy. Which they will, because they've been praying for a break like this for months. We won't.
I could give you all the official line on polls, that they go up and they go down, or I could point out how polls have a funny habit of underpredicting Tory victories.
But I'm not going to do that, because this election is not about polls. It's about sendinga message.
And that message is this: Any outcome other than a massive Liberal majority means that we have won.
Dalton owes his success to the fact that he is stuck firmly in the centre, and that it is very hard to dislodge him. And when you attack someone who is very firmly stuck in, it is easy for them to knock you over. This is what happened to John Tory, to Stockwell Day, and a host of others.
This campaign is not a war between equals.
Dalton has a host of desperate Liberal staffers willing to work 25 hours a day to keep the only jobs available to them, an army of unions willing to do his dirty work, the best political attack dogs money can buy, a cadre of experts on speed dial ready to condemn anything Tim Hudak does or doesn't do, and a group of easily massaged journalists ready to write puff pieces on command. (As to the last, if it shows up on a certain Liberal war room chief's blog, you can guess how it got written.)
That we are still standing is nothing short of incredible. That we have any shot at winning is stupefying. And we have better than *a* shot.
But there's a bigger issue here.
The Liberals have been the moderate, rational voice of reason for a long time now, and they think that as long as they present themselves that way, the electorate will reward them in turn. So what does it mean if they lose several seats? If they are cut to a minority? If we win a minority? Or, if we win a majority?
It means that, in a province where stability is valued above all else, people are getting tired of the moderate, rational voice of reason.
Let's take this tax credit mess the Liberals are in. They think Ontarians will reject the Conservative attacks as not in keeping with what Ontarians are all about. But if they lose seats because of it, do they really know what Ontario is all about any more? When they see the backlash over it, now, today, before the results are in....do they really know what Ontario is all about any more?
To win this province, when Dalton stands firm in his little centrist groove, we must show that the Liberals do not know what Ontario is about any more. That maybe quiet, centrist Ontario which weathered the recession with nary a peep was a mirage....a bad joke people tell themselves.....created by Dalton's absolute control of everything. And if that absolute control of everything is exposed as....well, not absolute anymore....then what?
That's what the Liberals are afraid of.
We have to show them that their fears are warranted.
By now it should be obvious to everyone that the Liberals will be spending the entirety of this campaign digging themselves deeper and deeper into the hole they've dug themselves with their poorly thought through tax credit scheme. It's a real shame, because now not only will they not be able to talk about anything else in their platform, but we won't get to hear about all the other ridiculous promises they dreamed up. It's true- their platform is chock-a-block with stuff that made me go "huh?". Liberals can take some solace in the fact that even if they hadn't inserted this silly promise into their manifesto, we would have had lots of material to pound them with.
So, in the interests of fairness, I've taken it upon myself to compile a list of the dumbest promises I could find within the Liberal platform. Commentary shall follow each one.
-"We’ll build on our kids’ success in literacy and numeracy by introducing a new science strategy." What is a "science strategy" and how does it help kids read better?
-"Any student who struggles to find work after graduation or has a very low income will have their loan repayments reduced until their income increases. In cases where students cannot find work, their loan payments could be reduced to zero." So if you can't find work after graduation, you don't have to pay your debts. Don't you wish it worked that way in the rest of the world? Yeah, and those new universities the Liberals want to build will just pay for themselves too, especially with the Liberals giving everyone 30% off on tuition. (Remember how they wanted to do that? No you don't.)
-"Our tax reforms have already cut the tax rate on new business investment almost in half. When the reforms are in place, it will be below half." In other words: "We reduced something to half of what it was. We'll reduce it some more, and then it will be less than half of what it was."
-"We’ll improve pathways to apprenticeship and remove barriers so apprentices complete their training." You mean to say a significant number of them don't complete their training now? Is this a problem that needs to be dealt with?
-"We’ll treat our seniors as productive members of society rather than merely institutionalizing them." Oh good! I'm so happy the Liberals don't want to lock people up for being old.
-"We'll do out part to help Ontarians get
healthy local food, by creating a Local Food Act that will celebrate, support and promote local food." Only healthy local food? So they're not going to support local cookie and ice cream factories?
Dalton McGuinty is a little cranky that we're being mean to him about his precious tax credit for immigrants who are better than other immigrants and not for people who are not immigrants. He thought he could put whatever he wanted in his platform and that Ontarians would give him another majority. So he released a whiny video where he and his candidates stand around looking very very serious and ask for an apology. (Oddly enough, no actual immigrants seem to be present.)
And in this video, Dalton McGuinty says something amazing. He says, "In Ontario, there is no us and them. There's just us."
The guy who has, for the past eight years, divided this province into two camps- his group of people who are taking Ontario forward, and the other group of people who will supposedly take everything backward- wants an apology because someone else used us and them rhetoric?
More to the point, why is Dalton asking for an apology? Is he an immigrant who will be affected by this policy? Shouldn't he produce an immigrant who will, on cue, complain about how they have a problem with how they're being labelled? I thought that's how this worked....or...maybe he just can't FIND anyone.....
Here's what I think, Dalton. You've demonized US for the longest time. You want an apology? First, you apologize to us.
A local Liberal campaign manager made comments critical of Premier Dalton McGuinty at a campaign launch Thursday, saying their strategy in the riding should be to downplay the party leader and certain policies.
In an audio tape obtained by CTV Ottawa, the campaign manager for Nepean-Carleton Liberal candidate Don Dransfield said not to emphasize McGuinty in their riding because of his unpopular poll numbers.
"I have polling numbers that are not the party's, but are separate polling places," said Morgan Rosenberg. "Basically, McGuinty's popularity in this riding is in the gutter, that the impression of McGuinty is not positive and people that associate with him tend to not do well in the polls." Rosenberg also said some of the party's recent immigration announcements wouldn't go over well in the riding and she was in talks to remove them from local campaign flyers.
There'll be a lot of more of this before the election is over, let me tell you. LONDON, ONT. - Premier Dalton McGuinty has contradicted claims by his own MPP that the immigrant business tax credit is just for “problems in Toronto.”
McGuinty, at the University of Western Ontario to announce 200 new Samsung solar jobs, said this program will help people across the province.
[blah blah blah...]
Liberal MPP Jeff Leal was quoted in the Peterborough Examiner saying, “We recognize the tax credit for new Canadians is really designed to meet a specific problem in Toronto.”
A specific problem in Toronto. Because, you know, IMMIGRANTS ONLY SETTLE IN TORONTO.
He told the Canadian Jewish News (scroll to page 19) that he thought funding faith based schools would be a good idea after the kind of campaign the Liberals ran in 2007. He's on record as saying the Syrian government isn't really that bad.
Now, the out-to-lunch MPP from St. Paul's, Dr. Eric Hoskins, is under fire for putting an approving quote from noted critic of Israel Sid Ryan on campaign literature.
When I heard OFL President Sid Ryan making nice with Dalton McGuinty and the Liberals last year in their battle to end payments made to druggists to stock generic drugs, I knew this would end in a painful divorce.
It boomeranged on the Liberals last week when they put out a pamphlet quoting a gushing Ryan, lauding the Liberals for taking on Big Pharma.
“Finally, a government that is willing to take on the drug companies and big pharmacies,” Ryan is quoted in the Liberal brochure.
It all hit the fan in St. Paul’s riding, currently held by Liberal Eric Hoskins. It’s a riding with a large Jewish population, many of whom are outraged that the Liberals would use Ryan — an outspoken critic of Israel — as a spokesman. “I was extremely upset to see Sid Ryan’s name on any Liberal Party marketing piece, given his very public anti-Israel statements and actions,” Eva Melamed said in an e-mail. “I am beyond disappointed in my MPP’s decision to distribute these flyers,” she said. “This will definitely have an impact on my voting decision.” In 2009, when he was president of the Canadian Union of Public Employees, Ryan led a successful bid to have the union urge a boycott of Israel because of what it said were, “apartheid-like practices of the Israeli state.” He also said universities here should bar Israeli professors who refused to condemn Israel’s 2008 bombing of the Islamic University in Gaza.
Now, St. Paul's being St. Paul's (namely, the type of place that would elect a goof like this in the first place), I don't expect to see much of a vote shift there. But what about the rest of the campaign? What, if anything, does Thornhill candidate Bernie Farber have to say about this?
Now comes the time for us to be change, not just talk about it.
Now comes the time for us to end the Ontario Liberal Party, once and for all.
We, the men and women of the PC Party of Ontario, have the panicked and unsteady McGuinty Liberals right where we want them. They are in way over their heads on this tax credit mess. We know it. They know it. The voters know it.
This could be the moment where Ontarians say, "No more!" to the endless volume of crap that issues forth from the Liberals. We are not a province that gets roused easily, but, dammit, we are all Ontarians. We don't like some of us getting something that the rest of don't get. That's WHY the faith based issue caused so much trouble.
A few months ago, Dalton released some ad full of ridiculous cliches. One of them, if I recall correctly, was "What defines Ontario? It's how we work. Together." Then, he goes and announces this turd.
A lot of hilarious irony here. The Liberals getting what's coming to them after their strategy in 2007. The Liberals stumbling into this mess by doing their "anything you can do I can do better" act, trying to outflank us. The Liberals forced into "explain mode" instead of us, for a change.
The politics of anger, huh? You're goddamned RIGHT, the politics of anger. Do the Liberals know what year it is here? Do they care about what has been happening in this country? Make a few more promises and it all goes away? All just a little misunderstanding? Just something that will blow over? Uh uh. No WAY.
Remember when I said it could be the moment? Well, it could. OR......we, the PC Party, could let petty, insignificant things distract us. Like the fact that John Tory is unhappy. Or that Ernie Eves is unhappy. Or that someone who didn't get their nomination is unhappy. Or that someone read our platform and is unhappy that it's too far or not far enough.
People get dissatisfied. That's their right. Trouble is, we have an election to win. So unfortunately, if you are unhappy, you dry your tears and get back to work.
Or, you can cross the line drawn in the sand. You want to sit at home? Sit. Be proud of yourself that it was you who might have contributed to a loss of a riding here, or there. Tell your friends how you showed the big bad PC Party what's what, and then maybe they'll come around to your way of thinking.
Or probably not. My personal feeling is that this party is not interested in slowing down for anybody or anything. And that's how a party who wants to win should behave. I'm sure all the Ass-Kickers on the other side would agree.
When Hudak was running for leader, I looked him in the eye and said, "Are you going to make the Liberals afraid of us again?" He said, "Yes." And he has done that.
McGuinty tells people we have to move forward, not backward. We, the PC Party, must move forward from all this Red Tory, Blue Tory nonsense and get on with the business of governing.
I swear, if this keeps up we're going to look back at the May election as a relatively well organized affair for the Liberals. And these are supposed to be seasoned two-term pros, too!
Yesterday, McGuinty's bungling thugs booted PC Party Candidate Andrea Mandel-Campbell from their platform launch. I can't imagine why: with only 300 people there, they could have used the extra bodies. Go ahead and watch the carnage. I've added a little appropriate music.
Oh, but as the Liberals will helpfully point out, it's not as bad as Harper, is it? After all, McGuinty only wanted to keep out staffers, MPPs, and candidates, and since Mandel-Campbell is a candidate, she had it comin', right? I mean, Harper targeted innocent students, and students would never be asked to leave a McGuinty rally......
Well, what are the PC's doing when it comes to Liberal spies? No doubt equally brutal tactics? Like in this photo, where they.....offer lunch to Liberal Caucus Services Bureau employee and frequent spy Matt "Puddles" Boudreau. Hmmm.
I suppose the McGuinty government may be just pandering to immigrants again with this strategy. After all, many of them must be used to this type of treatment back where they came from, right?
I asked a Liberal friend of mine once, "You know, there's all this talk about how McGuinty is unpopular. Liberal MPP's are organizing leadership bids. Why aren't the Liberal rank and file angrier at McGuinty is dragging them down?"
She said, "The rank and file are mostly happy with McGuinty. Social progress is most important to them."
Those words came back to me when I read through the Liberal platform for the first time.
This is a document written by people who are supremely satisfied with their record in government. By people who see positively no need for change in Ontario. When they look at the crumbling economy, the young people who've sunk thousands into degrees that do not guarantee them a job, the hospitals that never get built and when they are built struggle under the weight of the patient burden, the neglected seniors, the schools in rural areas who can't find enough students, the families sinking deeper and deeper into debt, the riots in Caledonia, the manufacturing jobs that will never come back, the green jobs that will never get here, the crowded roads, the unions that strike whenever they feel like it knowing Dalton will pay whatever he can to make it all better because he needs them more than they need him, the rampant waste, the constant barrage of hidden taxes and fees....they say, "Pretty good, but there's more to be done."
What sustains the Liberal delusion that Ontario is actually getting better, and that if we do exactly what we've been doing, things will keep on getting better?
With a deep and abiding clarity, I see now. Dalton McGuinty does what he does because he believes, with white-hot intensity, that social progress trumps every single one of our concerns about how our province is being run. He, and the Liberal Party he leads, are more than just "out of touch". They're not seeing what we see. All they see is social progress. They don't understand us. We don't understand them. We and they are worlds apart, more so than I ever thought.
Pretty funny how the answer was in front of me this whole time, isn't it?
The suffering that has been wrought upon Ontario is, in their minds, a fair....maybe even generous.....price to bring about social progress. That's why there is nothing, positively zippity-doo-dah, in this platform about how we're going to get out of the deficit situation we're in.
And when the Liberal war room screams out their distortions and smears, they do it because the end -social progress- justifies the means.
And whenever we challenge the notion that social progress justifies all this pain, the Liberals will always invent a counterargument, or, failing that, just go with "I'm no fan of Dalton, but Hudak will destroy Ontario!" Because no matter how petty or corrupt or high-handed Dalton or the Liberals are, what really matters to them is social progress. And we must sacrifice more and more to the Liberal god of social progress, at the urging of its anointed High Priest Dalton McGuinty.
Well, guess what. We have a chance to show the Liberals that social progress is not as important as whether the province can actually function. It's kind of like how you take care of your own house before you try to fix someone else's.
Oh, and don't think I'm not grateful to the Liberals for finally giving us a reason to "differentiate" ourselves from McGuinty, as if plenty didn't exist already. If it wasn't the giving of a tax advantage to people who hire immigrants over Ontarians who are out of a job, it's the return of everyone's favourite disgraced and defeated Liberal, George Smitherman, to the Liberal fold in that conference call I wrote about yesterday.
P.S. Oh, and for the Liberals who read this blog? That tax credit is what I'd call a "divisive" policy. You know what happens to "divisive" policies during Ontario elections, don't you?
P.P.S. Oh, and just what the hell were the Liberals thinking when they launched their platform across the way from the Layton tribute wall???
P.P.P.S. And, of course they would slap unemployed Ontarians in the face on LABOUR DAY. These idiots couldn't be trusted with a pineapple.
Good gravy. What a disaster the McGuinty campaign has become.
TORONTO - Ontario's governing Liberals hope all-day commuter trains and a new tax credit to help immigrants will "stop the Tory hat-trick" Prime Minister Stephen Harper suggested was imminent in the Oct. 6 provincial election.
Details of the platform Premier Dalton McGuinty hopes will deliver a third majority Liberal government in Ontario were obtained Sunday by The Canadian Press, a day before the party was to make the platform public.
The embarrassing leak has exposed the fact that even top Liberal insiders are concerned about some of the policies outlined to party strategists during a conference call Sunday.
An audio recording of the Liberal conference call was heard by The Canadian Press, in a leak the Progressive Conservatives said was proof the Liberals have some serious internal problems.
"It’s embarrassing that the Liberals, after keeping their platform secret for so many months, had all the details leak, said PC campaign spokesman Jason Lietaer.
Yeah, I agree that is an embarassing leak. And just what do we find out from this lovely little call?
-That the line the Liberals have been pushing about a 14 billion zillion trillion kajillion dollar hole is "just an excuse" to scare Ontarians. No, really. Liberal communications thingy Alicia Johnston actually ADMITTED to that.
-That they plan to build three new undergraduate campuses, but won't include details on where the campuses will be built.
-That their platform consists mostly of previously announced announcements. More on this particular outrage tomorrow.
-Their flagship idea is all-day GO trains....but only on previously established transit lines. It's expected to be super popular in the 905! Outside the 905? Sorry, I guess those people don't rate.
What a complete and utter bang-your-forehead-into-the wall disaster. I'm ashamed for the Liberals.
UPDATE UPDATE UPDATE: Ooooooh you know what I just realized? Dalton McGuinty wants to give a tax credit ONLY to employers who want to hire immigrants. But....wasn't he the guy who said a certain issue that dominated the 2007 election was "divisive" and could unravel the "social cohesion" of our society?
What a horrible holiday weekend it's turning out to be for Dalton. Now he's releasing sex offenders into your neighbourhood!
Parents are planning a protest Tuesday - the first day of classes - against a convicted sex offender who continues to reside in a Leamington group home next to St. Louis elementary school.
Catholic board director Paul Picard expressed frustration Friday that there have been no changes to Sarah Dahle's living arrangements and no updates provided to him about her status from the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services.
"This whole process has been an exercise in frustration to the board and parents," he said.
Provincial police issued a warning in June there is a "public safety issue" in Leamington after Dahle, 25, was released from prison and moved to the Seniors Alternative Care Home on Talbot Street East.
Police described her as a "high risk" to reoffend.
New mothers having trouble breastfeeding or suffering from postpartum depression could fall through the cracks because of planned cuts to a provincial program guaranteeing calls and visits from public health nurses, Ontario nurses warn.
Cutting the Healthy Babies Healthy Children program will place more mothers and children at risk, says a letter to Premier Dalton McGuinty from Ontario Nurses’ Association president Linda Haslam-Stroud.
“I would urge the government to revisit these decisions and stand up for our most vulnerable citizens,” said the letter, sent late last month.
Under the program, introduced in 1998, new mothers are offered a phone call from a public health nurse within 48 hours of discharge from hospital and a subsequent home visit.
Public health nurses have been told that as of next January, they will no longer be required to make contact with new mothers deemed “low risk.”
What next? Is Dalton going to kneecap former Liberal Premier David Peterson? Oh wait, he did that already.....
Dalton McGuinty not only favours putting poorly manned daycares in your neighbourhood, he also just doesn't care about the dangers they will create.
An award-winning daycare in Markham has had its licence suspended after three toddlers walked out of the playground undetected, crossed a busy parking lot and entered a neighbouring drugstore.
A subsequent investigation by the Ministry of Children and Youth Services found that the children were being underfed and that the centre’s supervisor was not qualified.
The Markham Village Childcare Centre, located in a strip mall on Highway 7 near Ninth Line, was closed by ministry officials Wednesday.
Three staff were supervising 11 children on the morning of Aug. 16 when the incident occurred.
After the toddlers — ranging in age from 18 to 24 months and still in diapers — wandered out of sight, five other children also escaped from the playground through an open gate. But the five were rounded up before they got very far, say parents and a daycare staff member interviewed by the Star.
Store staff who found the little boy and two girls at the neighbouring Shoppers Drug Mart were horrified. “We all have small children and we couldn’t believe this was happening,” said cosmetics area manager Shireen Moniz.
What's Dalton McGuinty's solution to prevent this from happening again? Chain the kids together?
I am disappointed. Very, very disappointed in the Liberal campaign.
I was expecting the "A" game this time around. I was expecting them to create devastating wedge issues. Dig up long buried dirt. Tear our candidates down and make themselves look totally innocent. I was expecting real sorcery, the kind that would make me "ooh" and "ahh" in grudging admiration. I was expecting a campaign where they would do their damndest to make people forget all about just how much our province has declined under Dalton McGuinty. I was expecting a fight.
What are we getting? An attack on the Tea Party and a mangled quote by a former Premier. It isn't even the right former Premier.
What the hell is going on? Did the Liberals forget who is running against them? It isn't Ernie Eves. I mean, I know the Liberals would love to be back in 2003. But it isn't 2003. This is a different world. In the middle of the past decade, when Belinda Stronach dominated the Ottawa gossip scene and people were announcing Paul Martin as the next big thing, this type of inside baseball foolery was all very well and good, but in case the Liberals hadn't noticed, those people aren't exactly as in demand as they once were.
Screaming about how horrible the Tea Party is didn't stop the Tea Party. It didn't stop Ford. Or Harper. The Liberal solution? Scream louder and longer.
And- you may have missed it, but in the interests of fairness, I'll mention it anyway- the Liberals are trying to get a few measly policy planks out in lieu of an actual platform. Now if you were a reporter looking for a nice front page story, would you go with some promise to make teachers go to school longer, or would you go with how an ex-Premier was apparently rubbed the wrong way by some nomination wrangle? Whatever you choose, it's the wrong choice because the reporter still has to pick one instead of having one clear story to write.
Meanwhile, Dalton McGuinty is still going to increase your taxes. He's too chicken to admit it, so instead he snuck it into some coma-inducing report that nobody's going to read. Except us.
Can it be that the Liberals are scared of losing? Can it be that they are worried about the fact that their terrifying attack ad blitz put them, at best, 5 points behind at the pre-election poll crunch?