Doug Ford speaks ‘For the People’ - just not low-income people

Announcements this week cancelling the basic-income pilot project that was up and running in several communities in Ontario, with thousands of volunteer participants, indicate that, for this particular brand of Progressive Conservatives, “fairness” or “the people” are terms that exclude the 10 per cent of Ontarians who live below the poverty line.
The new Ontario government has a choice to make: kindhearted, fiscally responsible, inclusive Progressive Conservatives or narrow-minded, deeply ideological, exclusionary conservatives?

Source: Globe and Mail - August 1, 2018
Full article at: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/article-doug-ford-speaks-for-the-people-just-not-low-income-people/

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Did a high-ranking MP actually say that? Lisa Raitt’s comments a departure from the mean

Lisa Raitt, deputy leader of the federal Conservatives, did show this week how it’s possible to do criticism on the sunny, high road - an endangered skill, perhaps, but one worth preserving, especially if Canada is determined to not fall into Trump-style politics here. Sprinkled all through Raitt’s criticism were some kind words — compliments, even — for some of the Liberal ministers involved in the shuffle.

Source: Toronto Star - July 20, 2018
Full article at: https://www.thestar.com/opinion/star-columnists/2018/07/20/did-a-high-ranking-mp-actually-say-that-lisa-raitts-comments-a-departure-from-the-mean.html

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Canada’s border control system is working, Ahmed Hussen writes

Seeking asylum isn’t illegal — in fact it’s a human right long enshrined in international law. Refugees aren’t criminals. And xenophobic language suggesting they are has no place in this country.

Source: Toronto Star - July 17, 2018
Full article at: https://www.thestar.com/opinion/contributors/2018/07/17/canadas-border-control-system-is-working.html

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Asylum Seekers not to blame for shelter crisis

The problem is not the number of people but the number of shelters, and to blame the newcomer is dangerous and horribly un-Canadian.

In his address to the crowd at St Peter's Square on January 1 this year, Pope Francis appealed for compassion and support:
"Please do not extinguish the hope in their hearts; we do not suffocate their peace expectations! It is important that everyone, civil institutions, educational, welfare and ecclesial realities are committed to ensuring refugees, migrants and everyone a future of peace," the Pope said.

Source: Toronto Star - July 10, 2018
Full article at: https://www.thestar.com/opinion/contributors/2018/07/10/asylum-seekers-not-to-blame-for-shelter-crisis.html

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Religious, business groups step up legal fight over summer jobs program

The new challenges move beyond the right to advocate against abortion, and more squarely into arguments about religious freedom and compelled speech, and are expected to appear in provincial courts and human rights tribunals.

Source: Calgary Herald - June 26, 2018
Full article at: http://calgaryherald.com/news/politics/legal-fight-over-summer-jobs-attestation-grows-as-religious-business-groups-file-new-challenges/wcm/13cb0497-604c-43fd-b7b1-56523b0e47b4?utm_term=Autofeed&utm_campaign=Echobox&utm_medium=Social&utm_source=Twitter#Echobox=1530059187

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Canadian Catholics warn against recreational use of marijuana

"The very significant health risks associated with the use of cannabis are widely recognised, particularly in young people,” a statement issued by the Canadian Council of Catholic Bishops says. “They include the heightened risk of heart attack, stroke, all of the respiratory and carcinogenic pathologies associated with tobacco smoke, and a multitude of psychiatric disorders, including schizophrenia.

Source: Catholic Herald (UK) - June 26, 2018
Full article at: http://www.catholicherald.co.uk/news/2018/06/26/canadian-bishops-marijuana-use-is-sinful-despite-legalisation/

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Young voters in Ontario should make sure their voice is heard this week

In this election, the main issues go well beyond health care and taxes, the perennial ones that drive older, more established voters. This time, affordable housing and daycare, cheaper university tuition, free dental care and prescription drug coverage and a higher minimum wage – all issues that directly affect a younger voting demographic — are in play.
Governments elected with the support of a wide population base, one that includes young people, are likely to be more responsive to them all once in power. In short: voting matters.
For the past four weeks, the party leaders and candidates have had their say. On June 7, it’s your turn. Please take it.

Source: Toronto Star - June 4, 2018
Full article at: https://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorials/2018/06/04/young-voters-in-ontario-should-make-sure-their-voice-is-heard-this-week.html

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Hydro sparks election debate, but parties’ promises don’t add up

The vast majority of Ontarians believed Wynne had sold off the generating assets of the old Ontario Hydro — the jewels of the Crown corporation, as opposed to mere poles and wires. Voters started to blame rising hydro prices on the sale — never mind that most hikes long predate privatization, and that the Ontario Energy Board alone determines rates. Amid the blunders and blunderbuss, the rival leaders can only offer competing panaceas: Ford will fire the Hydro One brass, Horwath will buy Hydro One back, Wynne will borrow more to shrink our bills.

None of it adds up. But in their zeal to secure power — political and electrical — each leader is taking take the path of least resistance on the campaign trail. It is up to each of us to educate ourselves on this issue and not be influenced by easy answers that are not feasible.

Source: Toronto Star - May 21, 2018
Full article at: https://www.thestar.com/opinion/star-columnists/2018/05/21/hydro-sparks-election-debate-but-parties-promises-dont-add-up.html

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Ontario election guide: What you need to know before you vote

We need to educate ourselves on the issues and the party platforms so that we can make informed decisions on election day. This article provides a helpful overview of the major Ontario political party leaders leaders and their party policies.

Source: Globe and Mail - May 15, 2018
Full article at: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/article-ontario-election-guide/

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What on earth is the responsible Ontario voter to do?

Now, more than ever, it is vital for us to meet, come to know, and and talk with our candidates. We must question them to determine their position on issues that are important to us, and expect that they will be willing to listen to us as well. And we must follow their progress in the Legislature to ensure that they speak for us. MPPs are elected to represent us, and should not simply follow the dictates of their party leaders.

Source: Globe and Mail - May 7, 2018
Full article at: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/article-what-on-earth-is-the-responsible-ontario-voter-to-do/

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