Tag Archives: Elections Ontario

Welcome the new Green Guelph province with one Party, one member and no voice

By Gerry Barker

June 11, 2018

Guelph – Those 29,000 voters, who just elected Mike Schreiner as their member of the Provincial Legislature, have awkwardly created their exclusive Don Quixote attacking the Blue windmills of populism.

We’re Green and not has-beens.

Guelph has become the orphan of provincial politics by electing the Green Part leader with no comrades in the Legislature to support its Green agenda. When you think about it, the Toronto Star got its way and a majority of Guelph voters believed they were making history.

Star columnists Heather Mallick and Robin Sears did their best to convict Premier-elect Doug Ford because of a seventh inning lawsuit for alleged fraudulent handling of Rob Ford’s estate. Renata Ford’s, widow of Rob Ford filed the $16.5 million lawsuit five days before the election.

Before any evidence to support the lawsuit was presented in court, Heather Mallick convicted Doug Ford basically because she didn’t like him. Well, the huge majority of voter in the province didn’t agree. He won so let’s move on.

“Stop Doug Ford” rang throughout the province advocated by Liberal leader Kathleen Wynne, who threw in the towel before the election campaign ended June 7.

However a $1.4 billion miscalculation in costing the NDP program that included more spending than the Liberals, helped doom the so-called Orange Surge of the party in the polls.

That was some prediction that most polls missed by a country mile except the one run by Global news. Two weeks before the election it predicted 70 seats for the PC’s, 49 for the NDP, four for the Liberals and one for the Green Party.

How close was it? PC 76, NDP 40, Liberals 7 and the Greek Machine, one.

By one estimate, in winning the Guelph seat, Mr. Schreiner spent more than all the other candidates combined. When Elections Ontario releases the official financial statements, we will know at how much it cost and who sponsored the Green Party victory.

In other words, it will be an interesting exercise to follow the money.

It won’t take The Green Party leader’s supporters long following his swearing in, to discover he has little to say stuck in the corner of the Legislature along with the seven Liberals. Maybe he’ll pick up some pointers from the seven deposed Liberals. Neither Schreiner nor the Liberals have official party status.

When you are a party of one, you are not recognized as an official party. This means there is no allowance for staff research or other perks of the job.

As I have repeatedly pointed out, those folks who voted for Mr. Schreiner threw away the opportunity for real change. Mr. Schreiner ran a powerful and well -financed campaign focused on him and a middle of the road program if elected.

What’s alarming to me is that a majority of people fell for it. It’s not just a dearth of critical thinking that the Ontario Legislature requires a party to have a majority of seats to form a government. The Green party was not even close.

I am reminded of the old argument raised by the NDP, protesting the system of determining a winner, contesting any seat is to be “first past the post.” This means the candidate with the most votes’ wins. That certainly worked for Mr. Schreiner.

But the nagging bellowing of changing the system of voting in Ontario to adopting “proportional voting” in which a voter must grade their first, second and third choice when completing their ballot. Points give each of those choices in order of the number of votes, and are accounted in the final tally.

The Trudeau Liberals election promised electoral reform when they won 183 seats in the House of Commons three years ago.

But the proposal died when clearer heads prevailed.

Besides, if progressive activist Susan Watson supports proportional voting, I have to stop and think. It just echoes NDP policy because the party has never won an Ontario election since Bob Rae defeated the David Peterson government eons ago.

British Columbia uses a proportional voting system. The result is the NDP minority government being propped up by three members of the Green Party. The NDP’s sole interest at the moment is to stop reconstruction of the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline.

Unfortunately, Mr. Schreiner will not enjoy that position at Queens Park.

Yes, Guelph voters spoke volumes about how they believe the province should be run.

But all they have accomplished is to create a Sanctuary City where Green progressive are welcome to dip their beaks in the public treasury.

The outcome of the election decided otherwise and Guelph is an island floating in a sea of Blue representing “green” policies rejected by the vast majority of electors in the province.

Indeed, we are stuck in the middle of the Province with only one member representing our interests in the Legislature. He is a man who has no support of Green Party members in the Legislature, no recognition as an official party, and with minimal influence on the Ford government to serve those voters who elected him.

I sure don’t like those odds.

Welcome to the Green province of Guelph.

 

 

 

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In Guelph, it’s the NDP offering more of the same, or the PC’s proposing real change

By Gerry Barker

June 4, 2018

Last week I learned details of the NDP plan to capture the Ontario Legislature and form the government.

This week, get ready for the NDP union-organized blitzkrieg in Guelph, supported by the big unions and their surrogates such as Leadnow.

In the past 15 years, successive Liberal governments in Ontario have pandered to the Labour movement. Organized Labour has achieved growing political power through changes in legislation governing collective bargain rules and regulations including donating millions to the Liberals.

Now Liberal leader Kathleen Wynne has announced she will not be Premier after June 7. She urges voters to support her candidates and send enough winners back to the Legislature to be recognized as an official party in opposition. Recent polls suggest that the Ontario Liberal party may be unable to survive as a force in the Legislature.

With the recent surge in the popularity of the NDP there are several elements that are driving this momentum.

The Liberal government passed several changes to the Ontario Election Act including banning non-profit incorporated citizen’s activist organizations from donating to specific candidates. Caught in that change were Ontario’s unions that, in the case of Guelph in previous years, have given substantial financial support to favoured candidates municipally, federally and provincially.

No can do any more.

The new rules increased personal donations from individuals of up to $1,200 with a portion allowed as an income tax deduction.

But what about donations from foreign-based corporations to the unions such as IFOR, one of Canada’s largest unions that includes the IFOR Media 87 group representing many members of the Ontario media.

Personal disclaimer

Now I’m not suggesting that the IFOR media union membership is biased toward the NDP or any other party. I believe the members are professionals and check their personal preferences at the door when they report for work.

The provincial media, particularly in Toronto, has reported slanted news that this observer would suggest was biased favouring the progressives and denigrate the leader of the PC’s, Doug Ford. I guess the business hasn’t changed that much since I worked in it.

The social media’s flood of opinion and commentary disguised as legitimate news presents new challenges for reporters and editors to separate the wheat from the chaff.

Let’s talk about the contest in Guelph where four candidates are working to be elected to the Ontario Legislature. As of June 2, voting for the NDP polling shows the candidate, Agnieszka Mlynarz, just a percentage point behind the PC candidate Ray Ferraro.

In any race that’s too close to call. Despite a poll that shows Green Party candidate Mike Schreiner leading the pack by 3 per cent as published in the local weekly, other polls think otherwise. The polling puts him in third with the Liberal Sly Castaldi, running last.

In my opinion, the union-supported campaign has strengthened the NDP candidate’s position in Guelph. This is because the labour movement in Ontario has mobilized manpower; electronic communications devices and even phone banks in those ridings that it believes can be taken.

The Labour teams have targeted 24 ridings they believe can be flipped to support the Andrea Horwath led NDP. If this occurs, Ms. Horwath will be Ontario’s next premier.

Again that’s like trading in your Chevy Silverado pick-up for a Ford F150 pick-up.

Supporting either the Liberals or the NDP will result in no change that the voters want in governing their province. The Liberals are toast and the NDP are no different describing themselves as global progressives. It’s is not what most voters want.

They want a change in government. Voting for a new direction that serves the needs of all Ontarians not just the progressives that have been running the province for the past 15 years.

The reasons are obvious. Ontario has lost thousands of manufacturing jobs that will never come back due to innovative engineering that eliminates jobs in all parts of the developed world. Also, the economy is directly affected due to the highest cost of electricity of most jurisdictions in North America.

An example of these devastating economic events is the development of much of southwestern Ontario as Canada’s new Rust Belt as spelled out in a recent article in the Globe and Mail.

The Liberal’s energy file is a disaster

The mistakes made in the Liberal energy file by signing lucrative wind and solar 20-year contracts with companies in which the government guaranteed a rate of 20 cents per kilowatt hour, more than three times the cost of nuclear and water power generators.

Add in the privatization of Hydro One, operating the entire power grid in Ontario has been a disaster with little recourse by the province’s minority share.

Nuclear power plants generate sixty per cent of all electricity needed in the province.

Voting for the NDP is like changing the deck chairs on the Titanic and expecting a better result.

Global news states: “Our model at this point has Doug Ford’s Progressive Conservatives ahead in 70 ridings, Horvath’s NDP ahead in 49 races, Kathleen Wynne’s Liberals ahead in four districts and Mike Schreiner’s Green Party ahead in one riding, Guelph.”

To secure a majority government, a party has to win 63 seats in the Legislature.

This would indicate that three of the four major candidates would be in no position to be part of a majority government. Voting for the NDP, Liberals or the Green Party’s Mike Schreiner’s party of possibly one is like throwing your vote away.

That majority number of winning 63 seats is impossible for the Liberals or the Green Party.

This boils down to the single most important decision for voters who want a change of direction in Ontario. Voting for the New Democrats extends more of the same social engineering programs that have led to the rejection of the Liberal government.

Add in the Liberal leader’s admission that her party will lose and in four days she will no longer be Premier only supports the theory that this is now a two party race.

This week, in selected ridings across the province, there will be an intensive campaign by union volunteers. The NDP campaign blitzkrieg in Guelph will work to elect their candidate, Agnieszka Mlynarz.

She is an earnest young woman who wants to play in the NHL before learning the game in the minors.

With all the sturm and drang of a hard fought campaign, there is only one candidate positioned to be part of the PC team to win a majority and bring change. The PC government will audit the books, reduce spending and grow the economy to serve all the people. It won’t just be the party of Doug Ford but the party of the people.

For these reasons on June 7, I am supporting the PC candidate Ray Ferarro, to represent Guelph in the Ontario Legislature.

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Why Change is the real issue in the June 7 Provincial election

By Gerry Barker

May 21, 2018

In just 17 days, the voters in Ontario will go to the polls to elect a new government in Ontario.

In Guelph a riding encompassing only the City of Guelph, the indication is that voters just want Change meaning ABW – Anybody but Wynne. That leaves just three candidates for the Guelph riding including Ray Ferarro, representing the Progressive Conservatives; Mike Schreiner of the Green Party; and fot the NDP – Agnieszka Mlynarz.

The fourth candidate is the Liberal candidate Sly Castaldi who has the dubious task of defending the policies of the Wynne Government whose party is mired in third place in the polls. Chief Liberal problem is the low approval of the leader Kathleen Wynne, who has not budged from a 20 per cent approval rating in more than a year.

The desire for change in Ontario exists right here in Guelph. Right now, the PC’s are leading over all the other parties to form a new government. It is their’s to lose aided and abetted by the Toronto Star’s daily concentrated negative news and commentary carried throughout the news pages. The Star’s target is PC Leader Doug Ford who despite a few missteps, seems to maintain his party’s lead in the polls.

In my opinion, this election is about Change triggered by 15 years of Liberal governments that reflect abuse of the public trust (gas plants destruction). Overbuilding power green generation facilities with expensive long-term contracts (wind and solar) making Ontario with the highest power costs of most jurisdictions in North America.

Even the Ontario Auditor General, Bonnie Lysyk, said the government borrowed $4 billion off its books. This was to finance the five year “fair hydro” 25 per cent reduction of power charged to end users.

What happens then when that money must be paid back? Our power rates will soar in 2022 when the deal expires.

Another reason Ontario will vote for Change.

Assuming the Liberal candidate has no chance of retaining the seat, lets compare the remaining three candidates and what issues are Guelph voters most concerned about? What influence can they have to accommodate their constituents’s concerns and desire for Change?

Health accessibility and long-term care – Ray Ferarro: “If elected, I will work as your member to undo the Wynne government’s cuts to hospital and long term care expansion. I pledge to fight for an end to hallway medicine where patients, for lack of space, are ware-housed in the hallways of Ontario’s medical service institutions.”

The NDP candidate, Agnieszka Mlynarz, is responsible for the Party Leader’s platform that while critical of the Liberals, represents costly social programs that are warmed over policies of the Wynne government. The platform came under fire recently from financial experts who claimed the numbers did not add up. Regardless, NDP leader Andrea Horwath, a veteran of 12 years in the Legislature, has been running an intensive campaign that has her moving the party into second place according to the latest polling.

Can Agnieszka Mlynarz win? In my opinion too many memory of the Bob Ray NDP government still lingers in the minds of many voters. Besides her platform does not represent change but a version of the Liberal’s social engineering policies.

The green tinge of the environmentalists in the NDP does not help in Guelph where citizens were hammered by a secret abortive green-power scheme. It was to create power self-sufficiency and reduce carbon dioxide emissions that are affecting climate change. The cost was more than $60 million of citizen’s public money.

The Green Party candidate, Mike Schreiner, has mounted a well-funded campaign including the best signs on the roads and streets. Voters know that the Green Party under leader Mike Schreiner, has never elected a Green Party candidate in Ontario.

But where does the Green Party money come from?

Well, the Greens held a rally in Guelph that was allegedly attended by 350 people with the guest speaker David Suzuki, the British Columbia multi-millionaire exploiter of fear of the earth atmosphere destroying the planet. This guy has made a handsome living promoting fear and loathing of the use of fossil fuels that he, among others, is destroying our atmosphere.

Some facts. That erupting volcano on the Hawaiian Big Island spews more carbon dioxide, the dreaded CO2, into the atmosphere in five minuses than all the fossil-fueled facilities in Canada in a month.

Canada contributes two per cent of all global CO2 emissions in a year.

This is the party that elected three members in the B.C. legislature and yjeu are propping up the NDP government opposed to the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain oil pipeline. It will take Alberta crude to the Pacific and open new markets for our resources.

The Canadian Government approves the pipeline as it has passed all regulations including an environmental assessment. But the three Green Party members of the B.C. legislature are dead against it. Based on the hypothetical argument it will carry fossil fuel feed stock and the threat of a tanker oil spill on its coastline is too great a risk.

More facts: The polls in B.C. show the majority of people are in favour of the pipeline. The three Green Party objectors have been members of the Legislature for little more than a year. Yet they are effectively stopping construction, so far, this pipeline that is legal and necessary to open up new markets for Canadian resources at better prices now only available from the U.S.

Ask yourself, why is Mike Schreiner running in Guelph?

In my opinion, even if he is elected to the Ontario Legislature, he will be the loneliest member in the House with no power, no influence and no support.

Nice guy but running in the wrong place.

In summary, I like Ray Ferarro for my member in the Ontario Legislature. He is the only candidate born, raised and worked in Guelph and as a former city councillor who knows what the people are concerned about.

That’s why he will work to improve our ailing healthcare system. Battle to stop the Guelph Hydro/Alectra merger now before the Ontario Energy Board for approval.

He will speak up on the issues affecting Guelph not only in the P.C. caucus but also in the legislature.

If elected, we can depend on Ray being part of Change at Queen’s Park.

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