The weigh-in: Ontario elections

Point: Tim Hudak’s plan not as bad as the media presents it
Spencer Gibara

For too long, Tim Hudak has had to fend off attacks from political opponents, labour unions and unfriendly media, who are all trying to define him as some sort of right-wing zealot.

Now that an election has been called, those forces have ratcheted up their hyperbole to a shocking new level, and begun acting as if his conservative agenda would crumble Ontario. It’s expected that political opponents would resort to slander, but now that the media has followed suit, the attacks are beginning to stick.

It’s time to state the truth. Tim Hudak’s platform isn’t as far right as his critics think. I’m not going to pretend that Hudak hasn’t put out a center-right agenda to campaign on, but the fact of the matter is, apart from some tax and spending cuts I’m hard-pressed to find a “scary” right-wing idea here.

The media however, has done a wonderful job portraying a Liberal bias by branding his policies as “dangerous.” On the contrary, it’s the most practical plan on the table.

If the Hudak plan was actually conservative, we would see a breakup of the beer monopoly, there would be a scrapping of the HST to return the old GST/PST ways, he would be pushing a flat tax, we would see some effort to move towards a two-tier health care system, we would see a return to coal for fuel and he would have kept the much needed right to work legislation in play. Instead, he moved towards the center.

So we hear about these 100,000 job cuts, and the CBC, Globe and Mail and Toronto Star have been fear mongering to the highest degree, screaming that such layoffs are a doomsday scenario that we should all be weary about. But there is absolutely no reason to be worried about these cuts. For one, these workers all keep their pensions, Second, many of these positions will be outsourced to private companies, and the ones that aren’t are likely to be useless bureaucrats or positions we can’t afford. These people are being paid through our tax dollars, and according to Statistics Canada they are the highest paid provincial public sector employees in the country.

If I’m paying someone to clean my house every week, but I’m going broke, it’s not wrong to have to lay off the cleaner. And that’s what people aren’t grasping. It’s not a right-wing move to lay off workers we can’t afford; it’s an economically responsible one.

If I’m paying someone to clean my house every week, but I’m going broke, it’s not wrong to have to lay off the cleaner. And that’s what people aren’t grasping. It’s not a right-wing move to lay off workers we can’t afford; it’s an economically responsible one.

In terms of debt, Ontario is worse off than California, and spiraling towards a Greece-like status. This is the Liberal legacy; it is one that needs to be overcome by someone willing to make hard decisions.

These people are civil servants, and by definition, should be interested in serving the needs of the province. It just so happens that the province doesn’t need some of these workers. It’s ironically unpatriotic of a government worker to demand they stay on the payroll, when their very employment is harming the province they claim to serve.

What we have now is the complete and utter demonization of a candidate that has already compromised so much to appeal to the average Ontarian. Meanwhile, the Liberals have not compromised on their destructive ways, but instead have doubled down in what only can be called the most ludicrous platform since the Rhinoceros Party ran for federal leadership in 1979.

With Hudak, we have an economically reasonable and responsible plan of action. When people talk about their hatred for politicians, it normally comes from the idea that they will say anything to get elected. But saying one hundred thousand workers will be fired is not pandering for support, but being truly honest.

He’s not cackling from his ivory tower, feeling joy from laying people off. Besides, these cuts have not curried favor with anyone outside the Conservative base. For once I see a politician actually giving us the bad news, while being genuine in his words. We can’t hate on politicians for promising the world, while viciously attacking ones that make the tough calls.

Tim Hudak was hoping we Ontarians would be mature enough to debate serious policy, and understand that money doesn’t grow on trees. I guess many of us are not. To speak candidly, I’m embarrassed for this province, and clearly I’m not the only one.

We’re losing thousands of workers to Alberta, Saskatchewan and the United States, and not because these people want to uproot their lives, but because they legitimately cannot make it in this province where every economic indicator shows us failing miserably.

While the NDP and Liberals are proposing ideas that are factually unprecedented for Canada, Hudak’s Million Jobs Plan is just a little too ambitious. That ambition however, has managed to summon the full wrath of the media, unions and political enemies, while the craziness of the other parties has passed by with barely a whisper.

Tim Hudak is the change Ontario has been clamoring for. We can’t let the sea of leftist decent dictate the poll numbers. We can’t remain in denial about the nature of the sinking ship that is Ontario. The Liberals have sailed Ontario into an iceberg, and have us drowning in debt. But, thankfully, Tim Hudak has built a lifeboat.

 

Point: Choosing is choosing lesser of three evils
Mynt Marsellus

During the leaders debate held on June 3, Tim Hudak repeatedly said he was the only leader willing to tell Ontarians the truth. He made reference to the other political parties putting on a show and warning that politicians who have abused power before would always do so again.

Hudak spent much of the night attacking Liberal leader Kathleen Wynne on valid points against the liberals’ record. NDP leader Andrea Horwath also got some good points in on Wynne, but something funny started happening after the first question.

Both Horwath and Wynne started asking Hudak questions in return, pointing out the growing complaint that some of the numbers in his platform were wrong. The funny thing is that instead of answering those questions, Hudak put on a show repeating the same lines about telling Ontarians the truth.

Friends, we have all been duped. With nice smiles and catchy advertisements the parties put forward their claim to power on false narratives and bad math. This is the crash course on the three parties that you need to know going forward. All the parties are lying to you to a degree, and its up to you to choose which is the lesser evil.

Friends, we have all been duped. With nice smiles and catchy advertisements the parties put forward their claim to power on false narratives and bad math. This is the crash course on the three parties that you need to know going forward. All the parties are lying to you to a degree, and its up to you to choose which is the lesser evil.

First of all, one of the narratives of this campaign has been the gas plant scandal — Hudak and Horwath rarely speak without mentioning the billion dollars lost from it. However, what Hudak and Horwath don’t remind people of is that had either of them won the election that year they would also have moved those plants. This is a distraction.

Secondly, Hudak proselytizes about needing to stop spending beyond our boundaries by telling stories about personal finances. He says that if you have debt, spending more on your credit card will not save you, so you have to stop spending.

It sounds lovely, but the proper metaphor for his plan would be trying to balance your home finances by taking a pay cut at work. Hudak wants to cut public spending and cut taxes at the same time. His biggest selling point is that he can eliminate the deficit in two years, but it is demonstrably false even if certain parts of his plan make sense.

Wynne and Horwath aren’t much better. Wynne promises a new Ontario pension plan and massive spending for transit renovations with only a marginal tax increase for the top two percent of earners. She’s trying to buy a new car when the house is about to be repossessed. Just like Hudak, good aspects of her plan are outweighed by bad math on a fundamental level. Ontario does have a debt problem, and the Liberals have yet to propose a good plan for it.

Horwath’s plan is essentially a place holder for a future election. The budget proposed by the Liberals was close to what the NDP would have proposed in their platform, so they stripped their platform down to small efforts that could be done in a minority government. They don’t have a plan to fix the province that’s any different than what the Liberals have proposed.

Finally, and if you remember anything from this article as you go into the voting booth, it should be this: every word these leaders have said is specifically to convince you to vote for them.

If you want lower taxes and union strikes over a pay freeze, vote Progressive Conservative. If you want better Go train service from Kitchener-Waterloo to Toronto and a pension when you retire, vote Liberal. If you want lower hydro and lower interest rates on your student loans, vote NDP.

In real terms, that is about all you can expect to be done by the next government. But let me be absolutely clear, when you go into the ballot box, you are not voting for a plan to fix Ontario, because that plan isn’t on your ballot.

Hudak talked big about telling the truth to Ontarians in the debate. If only any of the leaders did speak the truth, our province could actually get back on track.

2 Comments

  1. Wrong logos – they are for the federal parties, which are also wrong because they are dated. Fail.

  2. Wrong logos! How can you miss that!

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