Last month this column went after Toronto’s embattled mayor Rob Ford. Our conclusion that the city got the mayor it deserves earned a few chuckles and one question: What about the provincial Liberals? Take a look at the track record for the former McGuinty, now Wynne, government and you’ll see it’s much worse than anything Ford ever dreamed of doing. Toronto’s crack-smoking mayor is a small time criminal in comparison … and that’s the reason Ontario’s Liberals get a pass.
Let’s look at some of their more spectacular failures:
- The Liberal’s began with Health Care. McGuinty brought in the ‘Health Premium’ despite pledging no tax increases. Then he delisted OHIP covered necessary health services. That was followed by the questionable launch of E-Health a BILLION dollar mess that is still not cleaned up and the current issue: the suspected breach in patient privacy.
Ornge is another colossal fail. We should have known there was trouble when the Liberal’s forgot to spell-check the name! Hundreds of MILLIONS misspent, untold lives lost due to incompetence, and a high-paid board doing nothing to fix it.
- Ontario Lottery and Gaming has it share of scandals too. Incompetence, corruption, and more. That doesn’t even touch the OLG’s currently stalled Casino/Track reforms. Government greed combined with willing ignorance to eviscerate a once-profitable horse racing industry. That the Liberal’s messed with a profitable system isn’t shocking. Neither is their complete disregard for the jobs provided (horse racing employed thousands of Ontarians). The fact that they rejiggered the system to favour big American corporations is.
- That doesn’t even touch the on-going disgrace at Hydro, a world-class debacle that should have outraged citizens storming the streets with flaming torches and bloody pitchforks. Instead we merely shrug while our bills double and double again. The misguided ‘Green Energy’ strategy, the flight from coal, the slow crumbling of a once great nuclear power system, cow-towing to the NIMBY crowd, the switch to ‘smart’ meters, an over-priced and incompetent management there isn’t a redeeming feature of the Liberal handling of this crucial file.
- Dozens more examples exist: Caledonia (where it seems there are two sets of laws one for Ontarians and one for Natives), the G20 scandal, the HST, the total inaction on the Ring of Fire development, or the fact that they’re even considering a province-wide tax to pay for Toronto’s transit improvements. And don’t forget vote buying (the Gas Plant Cancellation cost us another BILLION dollars for two seats in one provincial election).
Each example more embarrassing than the last, but still the government trots its representatives out in front of the cameras, perfectly coiffed and smiling, to put a positive spin on events. It’s a matter of style: Ontarians laugh at Ford, but marvel at the Liberals. We know they’re robbing us blind, wasting BILLIONS, but they do so with such gall they won’t admit responsibility let alone apologize we can only shake our collective heads. The Liberal government looks professional even in their incompetence. They’re like cat burglars, suave, elegant, and aristocratic. Above it all and unconcerned about the opinion of the ‘common man.’
Ford, for all the photographs of him hanging around with gang members and drug dealers, is an amateur. His crimes are petty, his explanations childish, and his excuses just dig him ever deeper. Toronto’s boorish mayor is a swearing, sweating buffoon the type of criminal who holds up a donut shop and is surprised to find twelve cops sipping double-doubles as he bursts through the door.
Ontario’s current Liberal Government might very well be the worst in our province’s history, but at least they’re ruining things with style. Mayor Ford should take notes. obviously he’s not the only one smoking crack.
Read Fat Louis' previous column