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Editorial: McGuinty’s long goodbye

Let’s rewind 17 years ago to 1995, the definitive end of the Rae Days. The province was running a $10.1 billion deficit and had accumulated a $98.6 billion in debt. Ontario’s unemployment rate hovered at 8.7%. We watched the NDP premier try to tax charities, drive up welfare spending, and open up shops on Sunday. He put a moratorium on new nuclear plants and opposed NAFTA. Ontarians breathed a sigh of relief in 1995 and told themselves "never again".History always repeats itself. Ontario, after nine years of the McGuinty Government is, in many cases, worse than the Ontario that Mike Harris inherited. The provincial debt has skyrocketed to $272.2 billion, the deficit is at $14 billion, and the unemployment rate is at 7.9%.While the economy was collapsing, "Premier Dad", as he came to be called, saw fit to micro-regulate people’s daily lives. Pit bulls and pesticides were banned. No smoking in the car with kids, or in a vehicle used for work purposes. No talking on your cell phone while driving and no more plastic bags when you buy your government-controlled alcohol from the LCBO. High school students staged a viral protest against the ban on junk food in their schools, advocating for freedom of choice.  McGuinty’s own kids called foul when the Ontario government tried to impose regulation that would restrict teen drivers to just one passenger in a car.Not to forget his seeming inability to tell the truth; list of broken promises is endless. He promised not to raise taxes, and then brought in the largest tax hike in Ontario’s history, the Ontario Health Premium. He promised to balance the budget throughout his mandate and to avoid any increases in provincial debt, and then managed to spend his way into doubled deficits and public debt. He promised to… Read More

Dalton McGuinty’s tax and spend Liberal legacy

Premier Dalton McGuinty announced his resignation last week, putting his 9-year record of contempt, frivolous spending, mismanaged projects, and incompetent government to bed.The Liberals insist his legacy will be the “positive” changes McGuinty forced onto brought to health care and education.  And in a completely expected farewell salute, the Toronto Star praises McGuinty for leaving a “solid legacy” in education and health care.Luckily, most Ontarians have a vivid memory of McGuinty’s actual record.  McGuinty’s legacy should be rightly remembered as your typical tax-and-spend Liberal premier, spending extreme amounts of money without a care for the consequences.  Here’s the record most Ontarians will and should remember:Over $1 billion wasted on eHealth; McGuinty favoured his buddies’ companies over others, and rewarded them with $100,000+ bonuses and cookies (paid for by you and me).Strategically cancelling power plants in Oakville and Mississauga just days before the 2011 election.  This has cost us $733 million and the number is still growing.Over $1 billion given to ORNGE over 5 years.  Health Minister Deb Matthews admits she simply can’t account for where at least $25 million of money sent to ORNGE has gone.The largest deficits in Ontario’s history, including a $14.1 billion deficit for 2009-2010 alone (if you don’t remember, this record beat even Bob Rae’s socialist government in the 1990’s).  Projections indicate that Ontario may be bound to over $136 billion in deficit spending over the next 6 years.Adding $133.4 billion to Ontario’s debt while paying down none of it.  Today’s debt stands at $272.2 billion, or $21,180 for every Ontario man, woman, and child.Over $35 million in bonuses for public servants, after promising the public sector would face a wage freeze.  The Sunshine List – public servants making over $100,000 per year – is up 10% in just one year.The “health premium:” a tax which… Read More

The Libya fiasco is worse than it appears

Today we know that the attack on the United States Consulate in Benghazi on September 11th was not the result of spontaneous protests but rather a premeditated attack by a group of terrorists. I say today because only now have both parties, the mainstream media, and the general public reached agreement on the nature of this deplorable event. Only now can I write without provoking partisan vitriol that the attack that resulted in three US diplomats and a US Ambassador being murdered was unequivocally an act of terror. It is now October 21st,, over a month since this tragedy occurred, it is another tragedy in itself that it has taken this long to reach a consensus.Let us not pretend that what happened in Libya is not a political issue. It happened during the heat of one of the most hotly contested US Presidential elections in history, at a time of dynamic change and unrest in the Middle East, and saw the murder abroad of the first US diplomat since 1979. The last reason is the most important. It is for that reason that this issue must be explored not for political points but to pay tribute to the brave men who were murdered by finding out the truth. This makes the convoluted series of reactions and statements to this event by both sides of the aisle all the more troubling.During last Tuesday's debate, in the most recent partisan exchange, President Obama declared that the implication that his administration deliberately sought to cover-up information regarding the nature of this attack was “offensive.” After seeing the earnestness with which he delivered this line I have to say I agree with him, but for wholly different reasons. I think it gives the administration too much credit. The fact of the matter is that… Read More

I’m voting for Obama and why you should too.

I am a proud American citizen currently living in Montreal and I will be casting my ballot for the first time this upcoming Presidential election. Currently, the state of the union is uncertain; the United States has been embattled with a perpetual state of high unemployment and a sluggish recovery. Typically, history has shown us that the deeper the recession, the more robust the recovery that follows. However, we are currently living in a period that will surely prove to be a historical outlier; or perhaps a trend altering catalyst indicating structural economic change. In either case, the importance of the upcoming election cannot be diminished.Without sparing any niceties, the notion of a Romney-Ryan Presidential administration would be characterized by an outdated and ill-equipped foreign policy perspective to complement a plethora of disastrous domestic policies. At the crux of that disastrous domestic policy lies my main contention with the possibility of a Romney-Ryan Presidential administration, primarily since it would be predicated on an abysmal budget plan.Governor Romney claims that he would not support any tax cuts that would increase the United States’ debt, claiming he would only cut taxes if those cuts would prove to be “budget neutral”. However, it is certain that he would be able to find some supply-side economists that could justify his policy in theoretical terms while the practical application of achieving budget neutrality would be doubtful, to say the least. As a result, spending cuts will naturally need to be made elsewhere to counter-balance any tax cuts; most likely vital social services will be the first to visit the guillotine. Oddly enough, and contrary to sound rationale, some justifications would certainly be found and defense spending would be spared from any fiscal slicing and dicing. To add further insult to injury, Congressman Paul Ryan proposes simplifying… Read More

Ontario after McGuinty

Pundits and editorialists — not to mention Ontario Liberal Party apologists — have been out in force since Monday night’s surprise resignation by Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty to praise him and his accomplishments.Funny, tripling the public debt of Ontario, failing to uphold the law in Caledonia for three years, endless waste and mismanagement at eHealth Ontario, ORNGE and the Ministry of Energy, dithering endlessly while the Greater Toronto/Hamilton area chokes on its own traffic, and buying labour peace with bags of public money don’t seem to make the list of accolades.But they should — along with lying to Ontarians in the 2011 election about the Drummond Report (promptly ignored on arrival in early 2012, and now a new “blue ribbon” panel kicking the “fix the government” can down the road in its place).Did McGuinty’s time in office see improvements — according to standardized test measures — in Ontario’s schools? Yes. The curriculum being taught is inadequate, but by gar we can ace the results.McGuinty’s resignation — along with the proroguing of the legislature (and I note sadly that across the province’s media his cutting off debate is seen as a good thing, by the same editorialists and columnists who harped on Stephen Harper for proroguing Parliament to stop the opposition from defeating his government back in 2008) — means that the Premier will impose his 0% settlements on the public sector by Order in Council while his party finds a new leader to replace him.The Contempt of Parliament charges, the committees investigating his mismanagement, Question Period and the possibility of his minority government falling are now all dismissed. A new Premier, and a new session (in 2013), will see new committees formed, and all the hearings will have to be done over.Meanwhile, McGuinty’s finance minister (and probable leadership candidate) Dwight… Read More

Mitt Romney: tricking liberals into voting for him since 2002

During the Republican primaries, we kept hearing about how Mitt Romney was the “moderate” candidate going up against all those other radical tea partiers (with the exception of John Hunstman, whose only electable quality was that he knew Chinese).The truth is the same now as it was then, Mitt Romney is a true conservative. The only difference between Romney and the other Republican candidates is that he had entered the tent of conservatism later than others. He used to be pro-choice, now he’s pro-life. When Republicans change their mind about something, it’s labeled a flip-flop, when Obama reverses his position on gay marriage- he has “evolved” on the issue.Mitt Romney, like Ronald Reagan, has the incredible ability to trick liberals and independents into voting for him. The reason for this is because most people judge how “radical” a candidate is by their demeanor, not by their words, deeds, or policy platforms.When the general public sees Rick Perry, they see a gun-slingin, cowboy boot wearin, straight talkin’ Texan. When they see Newt Gingrich, they see an arrogant, overly confident conservative intellectual. When they see Rick Santorum, they see that wacko who keeps talking about all those outdated ideals like marriage, family, faith…who REALLY believes in those things anymore? Well, the answer is more than half the country does, but that is irrelevant in a world where the media is able to marginalize any vocal conservative.But when the general voting public sees Mitt Romney, they see a level headed, clean cut, presidential man. They see a candidate who is calm, thoughtful, and tempered. However, some of these people if not all of them are completely unaware of the fact that Romney’s policy stances are just as, if not more conservative than his Republican counterparts in the primaries last year.Romney is every bit… Read More
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