More front lawn politics: Guelph’s socialist advocates advance on Queen’s Park to protest policies of the Ford government

Bt Gerry Barker

April 22, 20


Last week, in St. George’s Square downtown, the newly formed protest coalition to stick it to Premier Doug Ford held a “die in.” It was planned to embellish their objections on the front lawn at Queen’s Park. They will join fellow protesters that they are mad as hell and won’t take it anymore.

Okay, what’s their beef now?

Well, the point of this planned rally on the front lawn of the Ontario Legislature is to protest the Ford government’s alleged plans to reduce Healthcare services and Education costs. Editor’s note: The recent Ontario PC budget increased the Heal care spending.

Does one have to “die” before boarding the chartered bus to Toronto at the end of this month?

This is mindful of what occurred last Thursday in Washington. The Attorney General of the United States, Bill Barr, held a press conference in the morning to discuss the Mueller Investigation report. It focused on Russian interference in the 2016 election and obstruction of justice by the President, Donald Trump. The problem was the press or anyone else weren’t told what was in the 438-page report until 11 a.m. after A-G Barr’s non press conference was over.

Cart? Horse? Or is it the other way around?

Now, the socialist progressives are on the warpath to protest about important issues concerning all Ontarians of which they have no knowledge or expertise as to how government processes legislation. It’s the checks and balances of most democratic parliamentary legislative organizations.

If nothing else, it’s pure poetical theatre to embarrass the PC government. You will recall a while back that the NDP organized a similar rally to protest cuts to parents with autistic children.

It’s a growing trend in the Ontario Legislature. If you can’t beat ‘em in the house chambers, you can’t do it on the front lawn.

This coalition is composed of the Guelph chapter of the Council of Canadians, Ontario Federation of Labour and the Guelph Movement of the People.

Well, let’s bell this cat.

The parallel objectives between the New Democratic Party and the Council of Canadians is striking, so striking that the organization’s social goals are almost identical to that of the NDP.

Here’s their “About us” statement: “Through our campaigns we advocate for clean water, fair trade, green energy, public health care, and a vibrant democracy. We educate and empower people to hold our governments and corporations accountable.” Ah, they forgot advocating proportional voting and alternative transportation (bicycles).

Does that have a familiar ring with a local flavour?

The C of C says they have 60 chapters of activists across the country. That presents a formidable political support group for the NDP, you think?

Along come organized labour unions and their role in advancing the NDP agenda. They are a major political force in the management of Guelph.

Now that last one is a new one for me. Who are they, what do they do and what are they moving? Wonder who is paying for this magical bus trip to Toronto? The likely source of funding the trip is the labour unions that have deep pockets and have always supported the NDP.

Doug Ford has become a lightning rod for Andrea Horwath’s NDP opposition leadership. She has 40 seats; Liberals have 7 reducing them to a position where they are no longer recognized as an official party in the Legislature. Now, take the Green Party of one, our man in the house, MPP Mike Schreiner. He spent a record $119,000 to get elected in Guelph, now, what’s he done for our community in 11 months?

Reason, the Tories hold 72 seats and are the government

They were elected to clean up 15 years of Liberal governments whose legacy of wasted resources and favouritism will not soon be forgotten. For example, the five-year reduction of Hydro rates across the province, called the Fair Hydro Plan. It was financed with borrowed billions to pay for it over five years.

The Ontario Auditor General, Bonnie Lysyk, revealed this whacko re-election plan to reduce electricity costs in October 2017.

It marked the beginning of the end for Premier Kathleen Wynne. Ontarians are stuck with repaying those limited cost reduction loans when the five years is up in 2022. Predictably power rates will soar to cover the costs of that temporary Hydro Holiday.

The new government was handed a giant financial rock when it took over and quickly learned where the money was leaking. The government had no choice but to reduce overhead and they have set out to do it.

With the constant baying by the opposition NDP and its allies, the organized labour movement in Ontario helped trigger dissent and angst among the citizens, is an abuse of the public interest.

Why does the Guelph administration only pay lip service to public interests?

Full transparency and accountability is a lesson the Guelph administration needs to emulate. Spending more than $9.2 million, hiring some 19 additional full-time employees as recommended by staff without accountability furthers public distrust of the process. Who makes those decisions, council or the staff or visa-versa?

We can be sure of one thing, this council knows how to work behind closed doors.

For example, what did council do with that $18.5 million it received from the former Guelph Hydro when it merged with Alectra Utilities last January?

So the energy of this planned protest posse of Guelph citizens is focused, not on Guelph, but on Premier Ford’s provincial government.

This is what happened when a national political party seizes control over our municipal council. They have held that majority for more than 12 years.

As citizens, we failed last June and October to correct the imbalance of power that has dominated our direction and changed our city.

Instead, we have become over-taxed, isolated, and lacking diversified housing including affordable dwellings and detached residences.

As an observer and commentator of city operations, I have paid both a financial and physical price to inform the public and challenge the costs of the social engineering projects that all of us have been forced to pay for and endure.

I have written more than 1,000 columns on, Twitter and Facebook.

I remain baffled by the continued citizen support of the controlling progressives on council.

Only we can change course and by organizing preparing for the October 2022 civic election.

I will report more information on this later.










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