What's good for the goose isn't good for the gander in Ontario

opiniongreen 100x100By Staff

June 29th, 2019



The good folks at We Love Burlington make a very strong point when they take the remarks Premier Doug Ford made about the way local communities choose who is going to represent and protect their interests.

Doug Ford H&S

Doug Ford: “Less politicians is a good thing. More politicians, it’s a bad thing.” He then increases the size of Cabinet to the largest Ontario has ever had.

When asked about the potential for regional amalgamation Ford explained that “What we’re trying to do is reduce the size and cost of government right across Ontario.” He continued by asserting that “Less politicians is a good thing. More politicians, it’s a bad thing.”

The We Love folks say they could not agree more. So why, they ask, has the Premier increased the size of his cabinet to one of the largest in Ontario history? There are now more Parliamentary Assistants and more Ministers than Toronto has City Councillors.

Fewer politicians for cities but more power for the province? The We Love people fear our local voices being lost.They also note that neither of Burlington’s MPPs were given the opportunity to take on bigger challenges; no promotions for the local political talent.

There is a nugget of information in there somewhere.

We love logoWe Love Burlington is a collection of people who came together to protest plans to amalgamate Oakville, Milton, Burlington and Halton Hills into one administrative organization.

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4 comments to What’s good for the goose isn’t good for the gander in Ontario

  • Steve

    The further the politicians get away from your area, the less they have invested in your interests.

  • WeLoveBurlington

    Thank You Collin:

    It was a bit of ‘tongue in cheek’ for us. We actually do not completely agree with the Premier’s statement – at least as it refers to Burlington. It is simplistic and without context. We were attempting to illustrate the relative hypocrisy of policy positions at Queen’s Park. We will be more cautious with our language in the future. Thank you again.

  • Hans Jacobs

    Cabinet ministers and parliamentary assistants get to have and keep their positions (and extra compensation) in return for loyalty to their leader, which explains their large numbers: obviously Ford is simply buying their loyalty, which he needs desperately as his failures continue to accumulate.

  • Collin

    “Less politicians is a good thing. More politicians, it’s a bad thing.”

    Let’s think a bit about this statement. Ignore the semi-literate grammar and substitute the word “representatives” for “politicians.” What does it sound like now?

    It’s fashionable to imply that every “politician” is a liar and a cheat but let’s hit the pause button before we mindlessly nod our heads in agreement with our rock-headed premier. He has indeed proven to be one of the politicians we could do without. But as for the local situation, Burlington is already under-represented, our council having been drastically cut some years ago.

    Years of having a citizenry that was asleep at the switch come election time did a lot of damage to our community. But that changed dramatically in the last civic election. Engaged voters elected a mayor and new councillors with a completely different attitude. The new team at City Hall has already made some important and progressive changes. The difference I personally experience in approaching my new councillor vs. the old one is like night and day. Even when she doesn’t agree with me, I know my voice has been heard respectfully and considered.

    Does We Love Burlington really agree with the premier’s statement, as your article states? If so, they need to give their heads a shake. We need more local representation, not less. Is that not what they claim to be working for?

    We need local representatives who will stand up for the interests of the people they represent. Cutting the size of our local councils, or amalgamating them into bureaucratic megacities, guarantees we’ll have less of a voice in the future of our communities. Nodding our heads in mindless agreement with people who would dismantle our democratic structures will only serve, in the end, to entrench the very elites the premier falsely claims he is working against.

    It’s our responsibility as citizens and voters to make sure we get the representation we need and deserve. Electing bad representatives is on us. Supporting the 19th-century attitudes of old-style politicians like Doug Ford on the basis of misleading one-liners designed to con people into supporting the degradation of our democratic structures will never lead to good outcomes. I certainly hope We Love Burlington (and everyone else who agrees with Ford’s statement) will reconsider their position in light of recent experience.