South Dundas - February 21, 2012 - The Drummond Report released last week confirms what many in this province already knew, Ontario is broke. Not only financially, but politically. Without drastic changes to how Ontario operates and what government does, Ontario will be the western hemisphere's version of Greece.
In eight years of leadership by Dalton McGuinty, Ontario has fallen to "have-not" status, costs have skyrocketed and debt has doubled. Health Care and Education eat over 50% of our provinces finances. All-Day Kindergarten is an expense we cannot afford, same with smaller class sizes. Wages have gotten out of control and our economy is still lagging behind the rest of the provinces.
What Drummond does not mention is the real cost of the subsidized jobs from McGuinty's Green Energy program. Subsidizing energy producers at 80 cents per kilowatt hour, when the average retail price is 8.5 cents is unsustainable, but ignored by the Drummond Report.
The real risk to Ontario though is our debt. Currently Ontario pays 10 billion dollars per year to service the debt. $10,000,000,000! Within 10 years that will be 20 Billion per year. That's paid before any program is funded.
Ontario, in it's present form, is sunk.
Drummond's report is clear, we need three-times the amount of cuts that were brought in by Mike Harris in 1995, for 10 years. Harris was only three years of tough cuts.
The McGuinty Government's response. They'll think about it and see what they can pick and choose from. A reckless response from reckless leadership.
In the end, we are all to blame. Collectively, we are to blame for electing McGuinty and Company. We are to blame for wanting so much for government, but not wanting to pay for it. Hopefully we all learn to do more with less, because the government doesn't have it anymore unless they tax us more. More taxes means doing more with less at home.
Perhaps all those people moving to Saskatchewan and Alberta have the right idea, get off the ship before it pulls you under.
This and that:
- Cornwall City Council can't keep taxes from raising despite calls from the community to not do so. With assessment values up, and departments coming in under budget, there is only one reason why council has to raise taxes: intestinal fortitude, or lack thereof. Council continues to show that they are unwilling to make tough decisions to keep taxes at bay forgetting that there is only one taxpayer.
- Brewers Retail made the news again about their monopoly on the beer market and anti-competitive practices. What do Ontarians expect? Brewers Retail is controlled by three of the largest brewery companies in the world and Ontario is one of the largest single markets in the world. Of course Anheuser-Busch InBev(Foreign), Molson-Coors(Half Foreign) and Sapporo(Foreign) would do everything within their mandate to keep independents out of their fiefdom. Time to open up to competition and end foreign-owned companies controlling the market. This is not 1927.
- Speaking of booze, the LCBO needs a good shake too. Time to open up the market to competition there too. Temperance and Prohibition ended in 1927, 85 years ago. We can do without the micromanagement.