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Saturday, May 31, 2014

Week 3 of the Ontario election and the Liberals resort to empty campaign promises

Published for the Prince Arthur Herald and Huffington Post Canada


There’s just no way the Ontario Liberals can put a positive spin on their legacy. Whether it’s what they’ve done or what they say they want to do, everything this Liberal government touches turns to greed, corruption, scandal, mismanagement, or cronyism. It’s been that way since Dalton McGuinty took office in 2003, and it’s continuing with Kathleen Wynne in charge.
It all started in 2003 when Dalton McGuinty pledged to balance the budget and not raise taxes. Suddenly, within a month of taking office, his promise became “oops! We took another look at our plan, and balance won’t be happening any time soon!”
Since then, the Liberal legacy has been lie after lie, scandal after scandal, waste after waste.

Our debt has doubled. We haven’t seen a balanced budget in years.
The Liberals wasted a billion dollars on eHealth, billions on reckless green energy experiments, and another $1.1 billion.
We’ve lost manufacturing jobs to other jurisdictions, like Quebec or Michigan.
The Liberals introduced full-day kindergarten with no plan to pay for it, and then decided they would also push this radical sex education agenda onto children as young as eight.
They banned pitbulls and threatened to fine restaurants that didn’t have calorie counts on their menus.
Public sector employees have been bankrolled with generous salary increases – all paid for by you and me – so the Liberals could count on bought-and-paid-for support come election time. The Sunshine List has exploded.
That’s the Liberal legacy after 11 years at Queens Park. They know it’s their legacy, so they’re avoiding it by resorting to empty promises and baseless attacks against the Opposition parties.
Even the media knows it, which is why we’ve heard very little questions about the Liberal plan, and a whole lot more about Tim Hudak’s Million Jobs Plan.
Three weeks into the campaign, on May 25, the Liberals released their platform, and it’s just as scary as the budget they proposed that triggered this election.
The Liberal platform basically sticks to the Ontario budget presented last month, with a few contingent promises removed and some others given slight tweaks.
Kathleen Wynne’s plan promises “only” two more years of deficit spending, with “only” $9 billion in deficit spending for 2015-2016. Then, somehow, two years later, the budget would be balanced, program spending would be the same, and interest payments would be $3 billion higher.
Where that money will come from has yet to be explained. A Liberal government under Wynne would introduce yet another tax: this one a payroll tax that would cost each person up to $3420 per year.
There was some other stuff, like promising $1 billion in Ring of Fire mining development after the missteps of McGuinty and Wynne led the companies that were trying to work there to close shop and sue the government for their mismanagement.
Or capping hospital parking fees for frequent visitors.
Or giving municipalities the opportunity to use ranked ballots to elect city councillors.
Or “help people manage electricity costs.”
They’re just empty promises. Notice, for example, that Wynne didn’t promise to lower electricity costs – she just said her government would help you manage them. Well, to “manage” a cost for every resident that has exploded under the Liberal government might just mean a fancy red flyer that says “hey, Jim, use less electricity!”
As of May 28, the Liberals have overtaken the Conservatives, 35.8% to 33.2%. The NDP remain in third place with 22.7%.
These are all empty promises that don’t even matter: what matters is the terrible, inexcusable legacy that the Liberal government has left for Ontario. What Ontario needs now is to learn about the true legacy left by the Liberals, then make sure they vote on or before June 12.
Liars: The McGuinty-Wynne Record is available in paper copy through Freedom Press Canada and in paper and e-book format through Amazon.ca.