Monday, July 30, 2012

Broten Breaks The Faith

A Dalton McGuinty cabinet minister threatening unions with legislation if they don't get back to work? Sounds suspiciously like something the Harper government would do!

What does it feel like, Liberals, to become that which you hate most? I think it's hilarious.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Popcorn Politics

They say I'm too focused on popcorn politics, but what else can you do when a situation like this occurs?

Yes, that's right: The Liberals are giving out nasty, dirty, calorie laden popcorn at community events! They wouldn't allow school cafeterias to peddle this filth, but I guess they think it's ok to serve to the Filipino community!

Friday, July 27, 2012

Complacency Is Complicity

Unlike Stephen Harper, (who Dalton seems to be copying every other day lately, with nary a peep of protest from his Liberal followers) Dalton started out his reign of error as head of government with a majority of seats. From 2003 to 2011, it was all Dalton, all the time.

And for most of that time period, Dalton and his Liberal friends kept themselves busy scaring everyone with the prospect of a Conservative majority in Ottawa. No one had ever seen something like a majority government headed by Stephen Harper before. So it was easy to scare people with the doomsday scenario of religious right wing fundamentalists running wild through the halls of Parliament. A CPC majority would result in nothing less than the collapse of Canada. The horror. And after all, you couldn't be sure that it wouldn't happen.

So, Harper had to spend 5 years governing, and not just governing, but governing through a recession, in order to convince people that he wasn't out to destroy the country. When Harper told people that he represented stability in April 2011, enough people had gotten used to him that "Stephen Harper, scary unknown" didn't really work as well anymore. That, and the fact that the 2011 election quickly devolved into a choice between Harper and the NDP.

But you see, Dalton has already had a majority government. Ontarians know what a Dalton McGuinty majority government looks like, and it looks like eHealth, the HST fiasco, the Green Energy Act, the G20, secret tax increases, the beginnings of ORNGE, and a complete disregard for the concerns of anyone who isn't part of Dalton's inner circle (which hasn't abated at all with the loss of his majority).

On the other hand, a Dalton McGuinty majority government would exhibit a complete disregard for anyone who isn't part of the inner circle, and that would mean we could all just go back to sleep again. Nobody wants to be responsible for holding Dalton's feet to the fire when doing so makes it look like you want to "take Ontario backward".

So here's the deal. If the upcoming byelection results in a win for Dalton, and a de facto Liberal majority, that means that voters knowingly and deliberately returned us to the state that we were in before Dalton had his wings clipped in October. They can't say "We didn't know" or "Dalton tricked us".

They had 8 years of Dalton with a majority. Long enough to get real well acquainted with what that looks like. And if they take us back there, then they have lost their right to complain. They are officially part of the problem.

I haven't forgotten how, months ago, Alberta voters rejected the Wild Rose alternative. And looking ahead to September, I can absolutely envision Jean Charest walking away with another majority government. In the former case, we had a truly Principled Conservative alternative, and in the latter case we have the biggest mass protest this country has seen in decades backing the PQ. But in the end, the result was, and will be the same; a future under a Wild Rose government, or a PQ government, was/will be just too scary and different from whatever they had already.

But here in Ontario, we've only had a few months of minority government. The possibility of a change in government still remains here, though it is unlikely. And anything other than a Liberal win in K-W will not result in radical change, but instead, things staying the way they are now. Either that, or we go back to where we were in October.

So it's not even a choice between what we have now and something radically different. It's a choice between what is, and what was. Dalton on or off the leash.

And if the voters choose Dalton off the leash, then that means that any possibility of a change in government is unacceptable to the voters. That they want governments to have unlimited access to power, and all the lamentation about democracy is just for show.

Now, remember when I made the comparison between Dalton and Harper? It took Harper 5 years and the threat of an NDP takeover of the country for him to get a majority. If Dalton gets his majority back, then it will be less than one year for people to decide, on their own, that Dalton with a majority was better than Dalton without. And that would mean not only do voters want stability above all else, but they prefer Liberal stability. If it's a Liberal government, then we're not prepared to wait 5 years to give them a majority. Got it?

And if that is the case, then three things are conclusively proven.

The first is that, given half a chance, voters will give Liberals majorities just because.

The second is that whatever Conservatives do to win and keep government is absolutely justified, because these people were and are never going to give us a fair shake anyway, no matter who our leader is or what our policies and principles are.

And the third is that any complaint made about what Conservatives do, by a Liberal or by anyone else, is completely without merit because- much like Dalton criticizing Harper, then turning around and doing the same things as Harper does- they have a problem with the Conservative who's behaving that way, not the behaviour itself.

It's not pretty. But I can't draw any other conclusion.

Oh, and by the way....eventually, a conservative government will be elected again in Ontario.

Wouldn't it be better if that government had a reason give to the voters of the benefit of the doubt?

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

It Can't Happen Here

It's amazing how the media can lament the role of money in U.S. politics, but ignore the same thing when it happens right here in Canada.

Numerous carpenters’ unions have given close to $1 million in total donations to Ontario Liberal Party and its riding associations,” said Jackson. “No wonder Dalton McGuinty hasn’t said a word about the Ontario PCs’ proposals to curb this kind of activity, despite growing public support for our Paths to Prosperity: Flexible Labour Markets discussion paper.”

I predict that somehow, we're not going to have journalists digging into this story the way they did with the robocalls or anything Bev Oda did. I don't think this is going to get the same amount of attention as Preston Manning's donation to Carleton University did, either.

I have a theory: Dalton McGuinty owes his electoral success to the fact that people are willing to look the other way when something like this happens, so that they don't get a Conservative government.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

The Truth Shall Set You Free

I disagree with Kelly McParland. Dalton McGuinty is not to be condemned for admitting, brazenly, that he made the call to kill the Mississauga power plant.

Never mind that it took him the better part of a year to come around to admitting it. Never mind that he admitted it in the dead of summer when "nobody is paying attention."

Instead of letting his flunkies Dwight Duncan and Chris Bentley twist in the wind over this, as I expected he would do, Dalton manned up.

Instead of invoking something Mike Harris, Rob Ford, or Stephen Harper did, he took them out of the equation.

Now, when we say, "Dalton McGuinty cancelled a power plant and passed the cost onto taxpayers for purely political reasons", no Liberal can use something a Conservative did to excuse Dalton's behaviour. Neither can the voters. This is Dalton's mess now. His alone. His to wear. He said so himself.

We can only hope and pray that Dalton McGuinty will continue to admit that his motives are not always pure as the driven snow. For somebody like Dalton, this kind of self-reflection constitutes progress.

What could have prompted this change? What could have brought Dalton to this point?

Could Dalton finally be admitting that his desire to Move Ontario Forward has consequences, and those consequences must be acknowledged and not swept under the rug?

No way. We're never going to get that lucky.

Because while Dalton certainly did admit that he cancelled the plant, at no point did he admit that he did anything wrong by cancelling the plant.

Instead, Dalton is taunting us. Daring Ontarians to hang this around his neck. To punish him. He doesn't think we're going to do it.

For there is a by-election at hand. In Kitchener Waterloo. One which will, for all intents and purposes, decide whether Dalton gets his majority back. And one which will decide, for all intents and purposes, whether Tim Hudak remains as leader of the PCPO.

(That part about Hudak is a fact, by the way. One which everyone acknowledges. If Dalton can do it, so can we.)

Dalton McGuinty thinks that he deserves a majority. He thinks you're going to look at the power plant and ORNGE and everything else he's responsible for, and vote Liberal or stay home.

He thinks you'd rather have a cancelled power plant and ORNGE and all the rest of it than vote for someone affiliated with Tim Hudak.

The excuse that "voters don't know" about the power plant doesn't work. The voters of Kitchener Waterloo are very much aware of the power plant. I have asked them at the doorstep. They know. And Dalton, through his little admission, is certainly not trying to prevent them from knowing. For once.

And if, with all this in mind, the voters of Kitchener Waterloo vote in a Liberal and give Dalton free reign to cancel as many power plants and cause as many ORNGEs as he wants, well, then it isn't Dalton's fault anymore. It's the people's fault. If you don't punish someone for misbehaving, you can't blame him when he does it again.

This is how societies plunge headlong into madness. Not because of conservative governments, but because people put off electing conservative governments for too long. That's when the real nutjobs take over.

Dalton McGuinty can live with that. After all, it won't be his fault when that finally happens.

But the question is- can the voters live with it?

Friday, July 20, 2012

The Left Hand Doesn't Know What The Right Hand Is Doing

After another long, hard week of getting mad about the Harper government ignoring the evidence, muzzling the media, and making decisions based on short term political gain, the McGuinty Liberals proceeded to ignore the evidence on handgun bans.....

Sharing the shock of his people, the newly elected Prime Minister, John Howard — just two months into his eleven-and-a-half years in power — seized the chance to overhaul Australia's gun laws, trampling all opposition to make them among the strictest in the developed world. "I hate guns," he said at the time. "One of the things I don't admire about America is their slavish love of guns ... We do not want the American disease imported into Australia." Howard argued the tougher laws would make Australia safer. But 12 years on, new research suggests the government response to Port Arthur was a waste of public money and has made no difference to the country's gun-related death rates.

Muzzle the media.......

Our reporter wanted to ask McGuinty one question at the barbecue, and that was about the security breach — Did McGuinty still feel confident that Elections Ontario could run the Kitchener-Waterloo byelection with integrity?

But the question did not get asked. The Record reporter and photographer were told to leave. The reporter was advised to use more generic comments on the topic that McGuinty had made in Guelph earlier that day. And meanwhile, hundreds of Liberals tweeted and shared photos of an event that looked celebratory, cheerful, a sun-drenched rallying of the troops.

And of course, make decisions based on short term political gain.

The Liberal campaign decided to halt construction of a power plant in Mississauga days before last fall's election when they were behind in the polls, Finance Minister Dwight Duncan admitted Thursday.

Ontario taxpayers are on the hook for $190 million for scrapping the project the Liberals had championed and supported until it looked like they might lose the Oct. 6 election.

"This was a campaign undertaking at a time when I think we were still behind in the polls, so it required a government decision which occurred after the election," Duncan told the estimates committee.

You hypocrites think you're better than us. That's what you tell yourselves.

But you're not.

Oh, and why is the Attorney General not calling for a handgun registry instead of an outright ban, guys? You were OK with the federal long-gun registry last year. What gives? Could it be that you don't, and didn't, ever really think the registry went far enough?

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Going Bananas Over ORNGE

So basically, just about nobody knew what was going on at ORNGE, or had the first clue with respect to how to prevent this trainwreck from happening. Hilarious. 

At times like this, there's only one thing to do- watch Nicholas Cage lose his marbles. Repeatedly.

Warning: Profanity. Not nearly enough profanity, but profanity nonetheless.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Two Wrongs Don't Make A Right, Dwight

Dammit, Dwight, I told you before; if you want to be Liberal leader, you have to pretend everything's OK when it isn't.

Instead, you kneecap your leadership rival Chris Bentley in public and say that the cancelled power plant will cost $10M more than it did a couple of days ago. Not only that, but you said it was all the Premier's fault, too, instead of unnamed campaign officials who could be fired quietly! You're doing more damage to the Liberals than I could ever hope to do!

Now how are Liberal supporters supposed to say that Conservatives like me have no right to criticize anything McGuinty does just because I support Harper? At least I can say that Harper doesn't have to deal with ministers kicking dirt at each other all the time!

If this guy Duncan acts any more like Paul Martin, we'll have to revive the drinking game where we take a shot every time he says, "Let me be clear"!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Who's Driving This Bus?!

If unelected Liberal hacks are making the decisions that count in Dalton McGuinty's Ontario, instead of duly elected politicians, then how- I ask you- how can the Liberals trouble themselves about Harper's controlling ways?

From the article:

The plant was killed Sept. 24 in a Saturday news event deliberately kept from political journalists covering the election campaign.

That’s because the Liberal campaign hoped for less critical local media attention so close to the Oct. 6 election. Not even Liberal press aides on McGuinty’s campaign tour were advised of the move in advance.

They hoped for less critical local media attention. Now that's interesting. Why would the Liberals EXPECT less critical local media attention? The media would never be partial to Liberals, would they?

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

$180M Is A Statistic

Does anyone else think the Liberals will get as mad about $180M for a power plant cancellation as they did about a $16 glass of orange juice?


That's what I thought. So here's the thing, Tories; next time you feel the urge to get mad about the $16 glass of orange juice, think about how they would react if the shoe was on the other foot.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Screw The Best, Take The Rest

Hi there, teachers' unions. Welcome to the ever-growing group of people who've been screwed over by Dalton. I think there's some room over there, in the corner, right between the doctors and George Smitherman.

I understand that this may be a difficult time for you. After all, this new unilateral deal Dalton got with the English Catholic Schoolteachers must have been an awful shock. Who could have predicted that Dalton would take the easy way out and cut you guys off at the knees? He's never done that to anyone before! And to cut this deal with the union and leave the school boards affiliated with that union out in the cold? Why, it's almost like Dalton can't be trusted when he says he believes in local democracy!

When you love your government as much as most Canadians do, when you trust it implicitly and never trouble your heads with questions about its motives, so long as it isn't headed by conservatives, or even- gasp- Mike Harris- you just don't see things like this coming. You guys are hardbitten union radicals who believe in solidarity and all that nonsense, but you are still "shocked, dismayed, disheartened, upset and, on occasions, angry" when the government is mean to you.

Well, now that you've take the step of opposing the government, don't expect people to like you anymore. People keep voting for Dalton because he keeps moving Ontario forward and he won't turn us into the 51st state. You don't do anything like that, so this is basically over before you start.

On top of that, you're being all negative about things. That's no way to be succesful! This is Ontario, greatest province in the greatest country in the world. There is no room for unhappiness here!  Perhaps you would have preferred Mike Harris, or maybe even Tim Hudak, who unveiled a white paper that supposedly targets unions this week? As opposed to Dalton, who is not targetting unions at all with this deal? Actually, don't answer that last question.

Oh, and whatever you do, don't ever compare what Dalton is doing to what Harper is doing. If Harper had bargained with a group of people this way, there'd be an uproar and people would fear for the future of their country. You would have been part of that uproar, too! But I guess since Dalton isn't as bad as Harper, you'll forgive him eventually. You always do.

Monday, July 2, 2012

The Distance

Behold the predictable shrieking backlash from the Toronto Star over Hudak's proposal to change Ontario's labour laws.

"Ontario’s economy is weak. People are hurting. McGuinty is struggling to rein in the public payroll. At times like this, regressive ideas can well take hold."

I like editorials like this because they are honest. They are an honest reflection of what those on the left believe. That any change to Ontario's labour laws is the wrong way to go. That we are not living in Ontario, but somewhere like Greece, where people with actual regressive views win 18 seats in an election. To those on the left, there is no difference between Hudak's proposals- like making unions reveal how they spend the dues of their members- and the most brutal union-busting tactics employed down south, whatever those may or may not be.

We usually aren't this lucky. When those on the left defend the unworkable status quo, they usually don't reveal themselves to be prone to the same sort of knee-jerk fear-based sentiment that they, hilariously, associate with us on the right.

The Liberals never reveal themselves to be driven by this same fear of change, though we know that they are. Instead, some sort of distancing mechanism is put into place. A few months ago, Dalton McGuinty agreed to an NDP demand to raise taxes on the wealthy in order to pass the budget. We know he wanted to raise taxes the whole time. But he couldn't give us the satisfaction of saying so. So he let the NDP speak for him. And there's no shortage of people willing to be mouthpieces for Dalton's government.

We know, for example, that the only reason that Liberals support Justin Trudeau for leader of their federal party is because his last name is Trudeau. That's it. The entire exercise is as simple as that. Trudeau I was PM, therefore Trudeau II will be PM. These same Liberals scoff at the notion that George W. Bush could have ever been President of the United States, and if you press them, they will likely say that the only reason Dubya ever held the office was because his daddy made that possible. But if you say the same thing about their beloved Justin.....well, sit back and watch the show. :P

You can read books like Brooke Jeffrey's "Divided Loyalties" and, reading between the lines, discover that the main reason why people like John Turner, Paul Martin, Stephane Dion, and, by extension, Michael Ignatieff, were such epic fails as Liberal leaders was because, whatever else they did, they were not the true heirs to the Trudeau legacy.

You can read the story of how former Liberal Party President Iona Campagnolo said, moments after John Turner had won the Liberal leadership, that Jean Chretien- who was the true heir to the Trudeau legacy- may have been "second on the ballot, but first in our hearts."

To come so very close to the truth, but to step back at the very last second. This is the essence of what it means to be Liberal. No Liberal can flat out admit that they rely on knee-jerk anti-Americanism to shut down debate over Ontario's labour laws and that they favour Justin Trudeau for Liberal leader because of his bloodline. There's always The Distance.

This ritualized, formalized act is what keeps our health care system the same, year after year. It keeps the CBC running at a loss, as Richard Stursberg lays out so bluntly in "The Tower of Babble." It keeps supply management for farmers humming along. It kept the gun registry for all those years. It keeps Canadians fearful of foreign takeovers and governments that "sell out our interests." In short, it keeps Canada the way it is and keeps it from becoming what it could be. Liberals know this, consciously or unconsciously.

The Distance must be maintained at all costs, and when it is threatened, so-called progressive Liberals transform into passionate defenders of the status quo. It has been with us since the War of 1812, and isn't going away anytime soon. And to maintain The Distance, to maintain the status quo, people will keep on voting Liberal here in Ontario.

Ah, but we return to the example of Greece we talked about earlier, and to the contagion spreading across Europe and the United States. Things cannot stay the same forever. The Liberals believe that The Distance will keep things the way they've always been. They are wrong.

And if we have to get to where Greece is now before they see that they are wrong- well, so much the worse for all of us.