07.04.2014 11:41 AM

This picture makes me happy (and relieved)

It’s been a somewhat frustrating 17 months. So I was very, very happy to see this photo, taken at the Throne Speech.

Never run away from anything, Churchill liked to say. (Particularly the past – it never works.) Glad to see some have learned that lesson.


  1. Sean says:

    I have a different view of the McGuinty years. Perhaps it’s an entire coincidence that the McGuinty liberals put into place a political strategy which is a very near clone used numerous times by American Blue States: exchange lucrative collective agreements for massive political support. The Working Families played their role perfectly, and McGuinty’s contracts proved to be a solid form of positive reinforcement. Of course this is pure unproven conjecture.

    American Blue States, such as California, Ohio, Michigan, New Jersey etc exploited the idea that future investment would dig these states out of the fiscal hole they dug for themselves. But it never happened-nor did it happen in Detroit! But what did happen was desperation even in the form of the California Governator issuing I.O.U’s to municipal workers as the state was flat out of cash- this is mere comic relief in terms of the other austerity measures.

    In my view what we witnessed was a form of Machiavelian politics, which achieved a series of glorious wins for the liberals and left us with interest payments of 11 billion on a debt which is near double the size since McGuinty took power, a deficit of 1 billion, an exodus of enterprise, an uncompetitive province re attracting new enterprise, a generation of young people who are plumb out of luck, a rural area which feels like second class citizens etc. Now Moody’s has issued another downgrade, which likely won’t be the last.

    The storm is gathering speed, thunder can be heard from the dark clouds which are now past the horizon, and more and more of us can sense the growing tension.

    • Sean says:

      12 billion deficit

      • Elisabeth Lindsay says:

        One billion going to pay interest!

      • Jerry says:

        The debt began when Flaherty Ecker lied to the Ontario legislature about $5.6 billion they hid in order to keep Eves/Harris and their balanced budget mythos alive during Eve’s attempt to hold onto power during the first election McGuinty won. when the lie became public the Toronto Sun called the Liberals Fiberals because they couldn’t keep their campaign problems, and the con has been on ever since. Flaherty, the man who never balanced a budget in his political life is now a dead and buried hero to fiscal conservatives. Hypocrisy never ends.

    • doconnor says:

      The whole confrontation with the teachers union suggests otherwise.

      The real reason for the union support of the Liberals in the last election was more the Conservative’s anti-unionism then the Liberal’s pro-unionism.

      • Sean says:

        “The real reason for the union support of the Liberals in the last election was more the Conservative’s anti-unionism then the Liberal’s pro-unionism”

        Then we should expect a strong sense of support for the government’s need to balance the budget by pay freezes, some curtailment of benefits, likely the selling of OPG and the LCBO.

        The alternative is to somehow bleed more revenue from those making a meagre income in the private sector, the one’s who’s taxes pay for extended health benefits for the public sector but who somehow missed out on this aspect of Canadian health care and it’s sacred tenant of universality. Will it be Cops for Cancer or Cops for Cops?

        • Jerry says:

          They don’t need to balance the budget on the backs of workers, the Canadian Association of Accountants just took the federal government to task for not going after corpoations and uber rich who use overshore accounts to pay little or no taxes: go after the greedy and everything will be fine.

      • Just askin' says:

        …which is in turn due to the infiltration of the provincial Conservative party by sleeper agents.

  2. Matt says:

    Wonder if he would have shown his face at Queens Park again had the Liberals won a minority.

    Liberal majority in the legislature = Liberal majority on all committee’s = vetoing opposition attempts to call witnesses to testify = gas plant issue dies a quiet death.

  3. Tyrone says:

    The pendulum swings, Sean. Rae went too far, making welfare more lucrative than work; then Harris came in as a corrective, went too far, screwing up hydro and cutting government too deeply with tax cuts we couldn’t afford; McGuinty comes in as a corrective for Harris (Eves never established his own brand) then leaves with an imperfect record that seemingly left the Libs vulnerable. But Wynne manages to fend off challenges from the extreme right (Hudak’s tea party impersonation) and the mushy middle of something (Horwath’s empty populism) with a platform and message that extends some of the best parts of McGuinty’s legacy (improved public schools, services), and now is comfortable enough, with her own mandate, to reach out to her predecessor.

    Like Warren, I think that’s great. Sean, you’re right to note that the deficit will be a challenge. If she rises to meet it, her legacy will be an impressive one. If she fails to bring disciple to the province’s spending – and I think it is fair to say that that’s an open question, or even that the signs haven’t been too promising yet – it will be her undoing. If you’re an Ontarian, you have to wish her well in that fight, regardless of partisan stripe. I don’t think Charles Sousa had the steel in his spine to wrestle down that deficit, but I do think Deb Matthews does. We shall see…

    • Sean says:

      The pendulum indeed does swing. But with a 12 billion structural deficit, 11 billion in interest payments( just to turn the debt over) 5 billion in subsidies for hydro producers ( source Toronto Star), an economic jurisdiction considered hostile to investors, with likely more depletion of enterprise, a rapidly aging population, an exodus of young people ( characteristic of American rust belt states) etc the pendulum seems dangerously close to the Ontarian tethered to the table ala Spanish inquisition style.

      Please keep in mind, I’m a liberal in exile, have voted NDP more often then I ever thought possible. And also keep in mind that Tommy Douglas always ran a balanced budget.

  4. domenico says:

    In terms of your examples, Rick Snyder is the governor of Michigan and last time I checked he was a Republican. Before that was Democrat Jennifer Granholm, for two terms. Before her was John Engler (Republican) who served as Governor for over a decade. The bad news continues…..the Governor of Ohio is a Republican. He has been there since 2011. California? You mentioned the the Guvernator. Do you know what political party he belonged to? I will not even mention New Jersey. So you can find better examples of blue states. I won’t promise that your theory will hold up, but you should be able to find actual blue states.

    • Sean says:

      Do you remember Gray Davis? Not all socialists are fiscal nightmares (Tommy Douglas) just as some conservatives are fiscal dip-sticks ( Brian Mulroney )

  5. Ian Howard says:

    McGuinty screwed Bentley and finished his political career. Don’t bother talking about loyalty.

  6. Ronald O'Dowd says:


    Loyalty is a two-way street. I was glad to see it from a humanist perspective but my political self just about cringed at the sight of it. Former premiers are like doctors — with a duty to do no post-election harm to the budding incumbent. That’s where I meet Matt. In a minority context, it would have been not only stupid but election-box poison.

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