McGuinty's Liberalism twisted mess 0
You can discover what your enemy fears most by observing the means he uses to
Premier Dalton McGuinty must have been cornered by a wild pig when he was a kid.
Or bitten by a mad cow. Maybe chased by a chicken with a broken wing.
Something certainly happened to fuel his (you pick the word - distrust, dislike, hatred) of rural Ontario.
People who care about politics express only puzzlement when the subject turns to the
leader of the Dalton Gang.
Nobody can figure out what the leader of Canada's former greatest province is thinking.
Or why he's thinking it.
I come from a long line of Liberals, including those involved in the early formation of the Grit movement in this part of the country.
Since my writing often is anti-McGuinty, readers frequently say - with varying degrees of humour - that my ancestors must be rolling over in their graves.
They're rolling all right, but not because of me. They're rolling because of the way
McGuinty has twisted Liberalism into a gnarled version of its former self.
The Liberals of my past would not have condoned the favouritism McGuinty has shown to urban Ontario. Nor would they have believed, let alone supported, the way in which he and his party have trampled on rural Ontario.
There are more examples than there are ticks on a ewe, but let's pick just one for starters: The attack on the race horse industry through the yanking of slots out of racetracks in many areas of the province.
Some of these tracks are in cities, but the race horse industry essentially is a rural one.
There is lots of discussion about how many jobs will be lost in rural Ontario because of this, but even the largest estimates haven't considered all the ramifications.
The ill effects of this decision reach far beyond just the race industry. Equipment manufacturers and tack and equipment retailers serving the entire horse community are in a state of upheaval because of the unknowns associated with this move.
Again the impact is mostly in rural Ontario.
Cancelling the agreement regarding the slots has been accompanied by bald-faced lies and misleading statements that again do not reflect any Liberal values I ever knew.
The biggest lie is that the government was secretly subsidizing the race tracks.
Here are the facts: Each year approximately $1.7 billion is generated by OLG slots placed at private racetracks around Ontario. Of that, about $345 million flows to the horse racing industry, with municipalities receiving nearly $80 million and the provincial government getting the lion's share, $1.1 billion.
And the government pays nada for the use of the property etc., on which the slots are located. Worse than that lie is the story from some government officials that the Dalton Gang has chosen young children over "rich" horse owners and the money will go to junior kindergarten.
Now the Gang has announced changes to the rules governing the locating of industrial wind factories anywhere some offshore industry wants to put them. Powers have been returned to municipalities to hurry up the process of wind turbine installation.
However, rural officials continue to be denied the right to say, "no, we don't want them."
None of this is democracy. It's not Liberal philosophy. It's not good government or even a reasonable facsimile thereof.
Maybe it really is the fear of a chicken with a broken wing.