The coming election for Mayor of Toronto pits two formidable rivals against one another.
On the one hand there are the people of Toronto, en masse. These are the people you see on the sidewalk, rich, poor, happy, sad, angry and miserable.
They are across the counter from you when you shop, They share an office with you. They drive your buses, streetcars and cabs. They cut you off in
traffic and they yield to you like chivalrous knights of old. They sit in meetings in big corporations and lean on shovels next to ditches in the
road. They sweat with you. They curse at you. They laugh with you. They laugh at you.
They are your neighbors. They are you.
Against the people of Toronto, in this election, are political operators, mainly in the provincial government, who have political patronage debts to
pay, and who have a vested FINANCIAL interest in who becomes Mayor of Toronto.
In brief, this election pits the People of Toronto against the Government of Ontario.
Up until now, the statements and behavior of Oliva Chow in this campaign have convinced me that she is the candidate of the provincial government.
Everything she has said, has coincided with policies designed to increase expenses and increase time frames for completion of projects. Proceeding in
this way facilitates the distribution of plum contracts to political friends.
She went so far as to "stand down" during the recent provincial election. She did not campaign for candidates from her own political party, the NDP,
and may very well have contributed to a loss by the NDP incumbant in a riding in the east end of Toronto, where he lost by less than 100 votes.
This was not done inadvertently. After the provincial election, Olivia explained why she failed to support her own political party.
The good news for all of Toronto’s mayoral candidates is they now know it will be the Liberals they will be dealing with for the next four
The buck stops with Wynne. (The Premier-elect of Ontario)
“That’s why I stayed neutral throughout the entire provincial campaign,” said former NDP MP Olivia Chow, a frontrunner in the mayoral
Olivia's attitude in this is typical and understandable. She knows that the Government of Ontario holds the purse strings. She knows that she will
have to go, cup in hand, to the provincial government to secure the release of funds for projects that the City of Toronto, that means YOU gentle
citizen and TAXPAYER, depend on to have a functioning city that is not torture to live in and do business.
Does the province have a candidate in this election? Of course it does. However, at this point in the campaign I no longer believe that the province's
candidate is Olivia Chow. Let me explain why.
Like many other Torontonians who were not obsessed with Rob Ford's personal problems and short comings, I thought that the main issue in the current
mayoralty campaign was transit. Much of the campaign has consisted of candidates backing one approach or the other as solutions to the problem of
transit in this city. Now, several months into the campaign, I have realized that the transit issue is not the central issue of this election. The
central issue of the campaign is how transit and other infrastructure projects are going to be funded.
With unlimited funding, Toronto could begin a building campaign aimed at solving all transit issues, large and small, bit by bit, constructing
whatever subway lines and LRT lines served a need or solved a specific problem. There would be no need of a "Grand Plan". Termites don't have a grand
plan when they start tunneling through your house, but by the time they are finished, the house has been thoroughly ventilated. Think the Paris
There is no reason, except cost efficiency, to have a grand plan. There is nothing wrong with solving one problem at a time, no matter how small the
problem. At least, doing it that way, one headache at a time is removed. It makes a lot more sense than sitting on a horrendous set of migraines for
decades because you can't decide what to do or how to pay for it. Think the Toronto Transit Commission and its political overseers.
So what's my point?
There is only one source that is absolutely dependable when it comes to financing transit expansion in the form of subways or LRT lines and that is
TAX DOLLARS. These tax dollars can be found in different places. the principle places are YOUR POCKET in the form of tax increases, THE FUTURE in the
form of expected tax increments forcast to follow from development and lastly and very importantly THE PROVINCIAL AND FEDERAL BUDGETS in the form of
TAXES ALREADY PAID.
Rob Ford is considered an undesirable political candidate in various quarters for numerous frivolous reasons associated with his personal problems.
Like John A. MacDonald, Canada's first Prime Minister, one of the foundering fathers of the country, he's got substance abuse problems, but even
worse, among the political power nexi of the province, he hates the idea of RAISING TAXES.
Olivia Chow is not averse to raising taxes in certain sectors of the economy, i.e., business and the wealthy. Olivia is not considered a threat to the
budgets of the province or the country. She was a very acceptable candidate to the provincial government until she started to fall behind in the
At that point another "compliant" candidate had to be found. Someone who was not averse to raising taxes. Someone who could be counted upon to refrain
from drawing the attention of Torontonians to the fact that they have ALREADY PAID substantial amounts of tax to both the federal and provincial
governments. (In this case we are concerned more with the provincial government.) They wanted someone who wouldn't do a Mel Lastman and threaten to
take the city INDEPENDANT by seceding from the province.
They found John Tory.
I believe that Tory has been brought "onside" with the provincial government with regard to budgetary and tax matters. What that means is that Tory
will not be pressing too hard for the provincial government to cough up money to fund transit expansion. Tory will try to cooperate with the
provincial government in downloading the costs of transit expansion to taxpaying Torontonians and will leave the status quo of funding arrangements
with the provincial government intact.
Tory is Kathleen Wynne's man.
Ford is not.
edit on 26-8-2014 by ipsedixit because: (no reason given)