Tim Hudak should remain firm on “Right to Work” option!

Update January 23rd, 2014 — 5pm: Good news! ONPC Leader Tim Hudak is standing firm on the Right To Work option. For proof, check out Dave Brister’s Twitter account. Two days ago, on January 21st, Brister tweeted that he did not support the RTW platform. Subsequently, on the same day, he also tweeted that he was no longer the PC candidate for Essex. Meaning, Hudak acted quickly and fired him. Now, that’s leadership!!

Surely Brister must have known, or should have known, that all candidates are expected to support everything in a party’s platform — and that caucus solidarity and discipline has nothing to do with being followers rather than leaders. Moreover, there is only one leader. So, whether a nominated candidate or an elected MPP, if he didn’t know, he should have known, you don’t question your colleagues or leader publicly. Ever! The phrase that comes to mind regarding Brister’s tweets is “loose cannon.”

However, this post is still relevant as it is a reminder to any other potential naysayers or nervous nellies within the PC Party, why the RTW policy is so important to its future success, not only as a “conservative” party but as a winning party.

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Tell me it isn’t so that Ontario PC Leader Tim Hudak is about to do a John Tory and backtrack on a flagship election policy  because some nervous nellies  (*) are concerned that it is controversial and potentially divisive.

In 2007, it was the faith-based funding policy. Tory ticked off the far right in the PC party by introducing the policy in the first place because it was too progressive. Then, he ticked off most of the rest in the party when he changed his mind.  PC voters stayed home in droves.

This time, the policy at stake is the PC flagship Right to Work (RTW) policy — the very idea that has re-motivated thousands of former PCs to return to the fold.

Yes, the one million job plan is positive and a vote getter but it will get lost in the criticisms if Hudak backs down on the PC flagship pro-worker option. As one of my regular commenters wrote earlier today, union members need not fear this potential legislation because it puts them in the driver’s seat.

Yet, unfortunately, Hudak seems to have already started the backtracking. For example, here is a Globe and Mail column from a week ago written by Adam Radwanski that indicates there is some questioning going on, as does this column by Christina Blizzard in today’s Ottawa Sun (H/T Bonefishcove).

Surely, as Radwanski suggests, Hudak learned something from losing in 2011. And all those nervous nellies should think back to 1995. You talk about controversial! The Mike Harris team were loud and clear that if elected with a majority government, the PCs would reduce welfare rates by 21% and insist that recipients either work or go back to school.

The media went nuts. One man followed Harris around to every single press conference dressed as a convict with a ball and chain attached to his foot. Yet, what happened? Did it polarize? Of course. But, the PCs won a huge majority! As John Tory found out in 2007 and Hudak in 2011, if voters want wishy washy, they vote Liberal — with disastrous consequences unfortunately!

Anyway, regarding RTW, what is it about democracy in the workplace that scares union bosses so much? The loss of power? The loss of respect? The loss of solidarity?

Well, we are in a new century. If the shoe no longer fits, they need to come up with a new design that allows more freedom of movement. Need solidarity and unity? Then, unions should be spending their money, not on ways to defeat Tim Hudak and his PCs, but on how to make membership in their unions so desirable that no one will ever want to opt out?

The crux of the matter is that Hudak needs to remain firm on keeping the RTW legislative option in the PC election platform. (5pm: Hudak “is” remaining firm. See update above).

[…]

* Endnote: It was former PM Jean Chretien who made famous the term “nervous nellies” in describing his Liberal caucus just prior to the 1993 federal election campaign.

Stats Can proof that ONPC Leader Tim Hudak’s 1 million jobs plan CAN work!

Macleans published an article by Mike Moffat on Monday, January 13th, 2014 suggesting that ONPC Leader Tim Hudak’s one million jobs plan, while ambitious and not impossible, will need a great deal of luck to become a reality. To prove that point, Moffat uses employment data for Ontario from Statistics Canada for the period 1977 to 2013.

In my opinion, what the Stats Canada tables and data prove is just the opposite to what Moffat is suggesting, that it doesn’t take luck, it takes good government policies — policies that create a climate for investment and spending.  In actual fact, what Moffat writes proves my point, not his. For example, he writes:

“One million jobs over eight years means that the Ontario economy would need to average 125,000 jobs a year over this period (which is represented by the “target” line on our graph). Since 1976 the Ontario economy has averaged only 85,000 net new jobs a year, though there have been many years that have exceeded the 125,000 threshold (1979, 1981, 1983-1988, 1997-2000 and 2003).”

I will repeat part of the last line of Moffat’s quotation. “…there have been many years that have exceeded the 125,000 threshold.” So, what is his point? That the Ontario economy would need to average 125,000 a year when the job numbers for the years 1997-2000 and 2003 were even higher. And, who was in power then? The Ontario Progressive Conservative Governments of Mike Harris and Ernie Eves.

Now, I may not be an economist like Moffat, but I can read tables. So, let’s verify his Statistics Canada numbers, keeping in mind that the red line is the annual 125,000 job target line he is talking about.  The easiest way to do this analysis is to hold a short ruler sideways above the year. Here is what you will get — recognizing that the numbers are approximate:

  • 1995 – 75,000 jobs were created in Ontario
  • 1996 – 65,000
  • 1997 – 100,000
  • 1998 – 150,000
  • 1999 – 185,000
  • 2000 – 185,000
  • 2001 – 105,000
  • 2002 – 125,000
  • 2003 – 185,000

So, the grand total of jobs created over 8 years from 1995 to 2003 is 1,175,000.

Which means, that without a shadow of a doubt, with the right pro-business and investment policies in place, an ONPC Tim Hudak government can indeed create one million jobs.

How will they do that?  Certainly not by depending “on luck.” According to what Hudak has said, they will lower both personal and corporate taxes. They will also loosen or reduce red tape for businesses because regulation compliance costs employee time and money.

And, anyone who doubts (as some commenters under the Moffat article do) there are rules and regulations on the Ontario Government’s books that impede entrepreneurship, has never been in business for themselves.

Anyway, the result is that when Ontarians have more money in their pockets, they buy products and services. And, when businesses have more money because they are selling more of their products or services, that increase in purchasing power results in a booming economy. And, with more demand, businesses hire more people and new businesses are created.

Of course, when more people are working, more tax revenues flow into the Ontario government’s coffers — which is exactly what happened between 1995 and 2003.

Yet, how often do we hear complaints from the Ontario Liberals and Liberal supporters that Mike Harris somehow “destroyed” Ontario. Well, the proof is in these statistics. What is also obvious in these statistics is, apart from the Liberal Peterson years from 1985 to 1989, how NDP and Liberal governments mean the death of jobs, huge deficits and “have not” status.

I mean, look at that Stats Can table again and note the two Death Valley drops in jobs during both the Bob Rae 1990-1994 NDP years and the Dalton McGuinty 2007 to 2009 years — when between 150,000 to 185,000 jobs were lost a year!

As well, note that job growth was at a peak when the Ontario Liberals took over from the PCs in mid 2003, a peak that disappeared very quickly after Ontarians were hit with the biggest tax grab ever —  the health care premium — followed by the devastating effect of the Ontario Green Energy Act and the resulting FIT Program and its job killing energy costs.

The crux of the matter is, then, that ONPC Leader Tim Hudak’s plan to create a million jobs in Ontario over eight years CAN work. Can he guarantee it will work? Of course not. But, what is the alternative? As Moffat has written about Kathleen Wynne’s job plan, it wouldn’t create a single job!!

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Endnote: I have listened to Mike Moffat (whose day job is as an economics professor at the Ivey School of Business at the University of Western Ontario), several times on various TV news programs, including Sun TV, and he always seems politically balanced and fair. Kudos to him for that!!!

Consensus media ignores fact ON Liberals rejected PC debt resolution

How many Ontarians know that Ontario PC MPP Ted Arnott tabled a resolution in the Ontario Legislature yesterday to develop a long-term debt plan? And, how many Ontarians know that the McGuinty Liberals rejected it outright? The answer is likely no one, or very few who are willing to talk about it.  Why? Because  the consensus media will not report anything that makes the McGuinty Liberals look bad and boy, does this rejection ever make them look bad!

Frankly, the only reason I know about this issue is because I am on the Ontario PC caucus e-mail list — you know, the same list that goes to the MSM.  Therefore, is it any wonder that some Ontario PC supporters assume leader Tim Hudak and the PC caucus are not doing enough or that press releases are ineffective. Well, readers can decide for themselves. Here is the news release and Hansard record I received today (and only available on Google so far), with a few brief quotes from it below:

“Despite the government’s rhetoric that this [Budget 2012] is an austerity budget, in fact, there is very little austerity in it. Spending is actually up over last year by almost $2 billion, from $124.6 billion to $126.4 billion. Last year’s deficit came in at $15.3 billion. This … budget projects a deficit of $15.2 billion.”

“Over the past year, the overall provincial debt that each Ontarian owes, will rise from $17,766 last year to $19,243 this year. It was $11,339 when the McGuinty government came to power in 2003. This government will have increased that number by almost $8000 for each and every Ontarian, in just nine years….”

“This year, they will pay more in interest on the debt than they will spend on post-secondary education, more than they’ll spend on transportation infrastructure and more than they will spend on economic development….”[My highlighting.]

So, is it any wonder the Ontario PCs won’t vote in favour of the current Liberal budget when they plan to increase spending by almost $2 billion dollars while only reducing the deficit from $15.3 in 2011 to $15.2 billion in 2012? Yet, somehow the Liberals think they can pay off the deficit by 2017. Magical thinking anyone?

Anyway, when the inevitable question comes up: “Yes, but what would Tim Hudak and his PC Party do that would be different from the McGuinty Liberals?” Well, take the time to either read my interview with Hudak or his verbatim response in the legislature to the budget. It’s all there. There is no equivocation. There is no closet progressive hiding behind his rhetoric. As he said to me, he comes out of the Mike Harris tradition and those values are how the PC Party would govern Ontario.

Endnote: Here is a post on the Ontario Debt clock by Jon Siemko at Tory Redux. It is also on my links list on the right sidebar (H/T Jen). I can’t put it up on my site, unfortunately,  because I am on the wordpress.com server and JavaScript is not allowed. As well, check out Joanne’s post about the McGuinty government “green energy” disaster, one of the main reasons behind Ontario’s fiscal problems.

Ontario needs a strong PC majority gov’t led by Tim Hudak

Note: I am updating some files from draft to publish. So, if this goes on the aggregator, my apologies as it was originally published on September 29th, 2011. Mind you, it is still what I believe!

Joanne at Blue Like You is bang on when she says Ontario needs a strong Progressive Conservative (PC) government. She writes:

If the Liberals and NDP end up forming some kind of coalition government we could have the worst of both worlds – McGuinty’s mindless focus on Green Energy at whatever expense, plus Horwath’s pressure to raise corporate taxes. Add to that their mutual support for Big Unions and Ontario would go from Have-Not to Dead-Zone.”

To avoid that, Ontario voters should NOT simply park their vote with the Greens or the NDP. Too many of us did that in 1990 and ended up with five years of the Bob Rae NDP fiasco. Yes I know, the current NDP is not the same team. But, they still want to raise corporate taxes, which is a job killer we sure don’t need.

Instead, my message is to all those who, for whatever reason, don’t normally vote PC, please vote for your PC candidate this time for a strong PC government — which is exactly what we need to turn Ontario around.

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Hudak’s PC Party releases “Five-Point-Plan” to turn Ontario around

There have been many who have criticized Ontario PC Leader Tim Hudak and the PC Changebook as not adding up or not being to the point. Well, today the PC Party released their five point plan on how, if given a majority government on October 6th, 2011, they would implement job creation policies by reducing regulations and encouraging private  investment and business expansion (H/T Joanne at Blue Like You). 

To do that, a Premier Hudak and his PC caucus would:

  • Treat energy policy as economic policy – not as a social program;
  • Train 200,000 more skilled workers through expanding the apprenticeship system;
  • Reduce taxes on job creators;
  • Eliminate job-killing red tape; and
  • Lower taxes on families so they have the confidence to spend again.

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Ontario PCs new website to counteract “Working Families” ads

To get the truth about Tim Hudak and the Ontario PC Party, here is a new website that puts the record straight. Let’s get a blogburst going and send this URL to everyone you know who lives in Ontario. The domain is: www.truthabouttimhudak.com.  Why is this so important? Well, just as their federal Liberal cousins are doing to the Conservative Government in Ottawa, the provincial Liberals are spreading part-truths and innuendo about Tim Hudak and the Ontario PC Party. Of course, they are not doing that through the Liberal Party of Ontario, but by hiding behind the Working Families Coalition — who claim to be non-partisan but are clearly pro-Liberal. Why? Because the Ontario Liberals can’t fight the October 6, 2011 provincial election on their own record, apart from the single-issue, the full-day kindergarten. Instead, the Working Families group simply do the Liberals’ dirty work for them by making stuff up.

Well,  hopefully, this time, Ontarians will see through that divide and conquer and change-the-subject strategy. Think about it. The faith-based funding issue in October 2007 masked what the McGuinty crew was going to do and we now live in a “have-not” province because voters bought the division and fear. Well, as the video from the PC’s new website shows, we can’t afford to make that same mistake again. 

Would Hudak’s Ont PC’s provide real choice re kindergarten?

Interesting that in ParentCentral.ca magazine,  the Ontario McGuinty Liberals are now trying to convince parents that they actually do have a “choice” regarding participation in the full-day kindergarten. Clearly that is not the case at all. In fact, their options are only that their young children either attend or not attend — since kindergarten is not compulsory in Ontario. Some choice that is. In fact, that is no choice at all. Parents either do it the McGuinty government’s way or not at all.

Instead, choice should have been half-day versus full-day kindergarten — which was what Premier Dalton McGuinty originally promised. Meaning, another broken promise.  Well, if the mayoralty race in Toronto is any indication, Ontarians are not going to simply say “okay sir, anything you say sir.” Meaning, the Ontario Liberals are going to go down to defeat in the provincial election of October 2011 in a big way — a way that they, in their current mode of arrogance and entitlement, simply seem to have no idea how bad it is going to be.  
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