Meanwhile, in rural Ontario, the Green Energy Act is creating a massive headache for the Liberals. Not only is it pushing up the price of electricity, it’s foisting hundreds of ugly, disruptive wind turbines on small communities, destroying other commercial ventures such as tourism with their hulking, oppressive presence. Who wants to stay at a bed-and-breakfast in the middle of a wind farm?
by Christina Blizzard, Toronto Sun
How ironic that the Legislature returned from its two-month break right after Family Day.
The newly minted holiday was an election bribe dropped just as the election buses were gearing up for the 2007 election.
Now the third Monday in February has become the end of the Christmas vacation for politicians.
It was a brilliant campaign promise, of course. Didn’t cost Premier Dalton McGuinty a nickel. All the costs are borne by business — and the province gets to suck up the glory.
So what wild and wacky promises can we expect from McGuinty this year, in the run up to the Oct. 6 vote?
So far, he’s mostly unpromised.
We used to joke about how McGuinty’s nose grew every time he broke a promise.
Remember his pledge not to raise your taxes “one cent” in 2003?
Clunk — the nose grew.
How about rolling back tolls on Hwy. 407?
Clunk, clunk. The nose knew.
Remember he was going to cap hydro rates?
Worked well — didn’t it?
Another nose clunk.
Now McGuinty’s backtracking and buying votes on so many goofy plans his whole head is spinning.
At huge cost, he cancelled the planned gas-fired generating plant in Oakville. Then last week, McGuinty scrapped plans to build off-shore wind turbines.
Never mind that he’s slammed people who didn’t want them as the “worst kind of NIMBYs,” suddenly, the “science wasn’t there.”
He’s borrowing $1 billion to give you a hydro rebate, and all-day kindergarten is another $1-billion election bribe.
Meanwhile, in rural Ontario, the Green Energy Act is creating a massive headache for the Liberals.
Not only is it pushing up the price of electricity, it’s foisting hundreds of ugly, disruptive wind turbines on small communities, destroying other commercial ventures such as tourism with their hulking, oppressive presence.
Who wants to stay at a bed-and-breakfast in the middle of a wind farm?
His government is forcing the closure of schools in rural areas, hospital beds are shutting down and some parts of the province are turning into ghost communities thanks to McGuinty and his trendy, urban caucus.
Out of sight, out of mind.
That brings us to PC Leader Tim Hudak.
He’s doing well in the polls, but you sense it’s only because right now people are checking the “anyone-but-McGuinty” box.
As the campaign develops and people start to focus on personalities and platforms, he’ll go under the voter microscope.
Hudak’s challenge will be defining himself as not just different from McGuinty, but different in a good way.
If the anti-establishment, anti-status-quo sentiments that swept the province in the municipal election slop into provincial politics, Hudak’s task will be greater: He needs to show he’s not same-old, same-old, but still has the gravitas to be premier.
The Tory platform will be intensely parsed for its workability. It can’t be a platform of slogans and bumper stickers.
Hudak needs to demonstrate he has what it takes to run the province.
There’s a cruel irony in politics. Liberals can fib their way to power, smile and get re-elected.
Hudak doesn’t have that luxury. Tory voters are more pragmatic. You can’t bribe them with holidays. They stayed home in droves in 2007 because they didn’t like faith-based school funding.
Hudak needs to shore up his traditional core of support, while growing his vote — without growing his nose.