Editorials

Policing Costs Will Rise, Details to Follow

Written by  |  Wednesday, 20 August 2014 12:28  |  Published in Editorials
In North and Central Frontenac there are two police officers scheduled to cover policing needs at all times. In the daytime they sometimes patrol in two cars and at night they double up in one vehicle. The same level of service is provided in Tay Valley. In South Frontenac, where there is a policing contract, the service level is a bit higher. The police who serve all these communities also spend a lot of time working directly for the Province of Ontario by covering Highway 7 and Highway 401, which are not within the jurisdiction of the townships. These levels of service are not changing, but what is changing is how much people will be charged for policing on their property tax bills. Ever since…

A leopard is a leopard

Written by  |  Thursday, 17 July 2014 01:59  |  Published in Editorials
The published photo of Kathleen Wynne greeting Dalton McGuinty at the Ontario legislature with open arms on the day of the swearing in of her new government, coupled with McGuinty being quoted as saying the recent election was a vindication of his time in office, was a bit hard to take. After saying “I am not McGuinty; we are a new party, we will rule differently” from the day of her ascendance to party leadership until the day of the election 14 months later, Kathleen Wynne's smile in that photo had a Cheshire cat quality to it. Politicians are a cynical lot. They play a hard game of front page image control and backroom deals and counter deals, and Kathleen Wynne has turned out to…

Pride in Canada

Written by  |  Thursday, 03 July 2014 10:46  |  Published in Editorials
Far be it from me to praise the City of Toronto, under any circumstances. But I have to make an exception. Last week the City hosted the World Pride conference, which culminated in a parade that was attended by 2 million people. Compared with all of the difficulties that result from hosing just 8 world leaders a couple of years ago, by all accounts World Pride was a roaring success. We live in a time where nations as diverse as Russia, Uganda, and others, have ramped up institutional and legal persecution of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered people in recent months. LGBT people have faced persecution to the point of death in the most extreme cases for no other reason than their sexuality for centuries…

What came first, the sustainability or the resiliency?

Written by  |  Thursday, 22 May 2014 08:41  |  Published in Editorials
... if something has a lot of resiliency it is more likely to be sustainable, but even things that are very resilient are not always sustainable over time. Then again, how sustainable can something be if it is not resilient? When push comes to shove, is it better to push than it is to shove, or not ...? All of these questions, as fascinating as they are, point to a debate that is raging in sustainability circles and even at the Frontenac County Advisory Committee on Sustainability. You would think that the one thing that the committee would agree about is sustainability, but you would be wrong. Members of the committee have been taken aback, as have others, with the ubiquity of the word sustainability.…

Local campaign slowly getting underway; and what is Hudak up to?

Written by  |  Thursday, 15 May 2014 10:57  |  Published in Editorials
While local election campaigns have been slow to ramp up, Kathleen Wynne and Tim Hudak have already set up a polarizing debate that each hopes will lead to their own success. Wynne went first. She put out a left-leaning budget, fully expecting to campaign on it, and then began the campaign by scuffling with the federal government over her proposed pension plan. Her plan is to establish herself as the one politician standing in the way of Conservative governments in both Toronto and Ottawa, an attempt not only to tie Tim Hudak to Stephen Harper, but also to wrestle votes from the NDP. It is only a matter of time before she begins saying that Ontarians who vote NDP will only be helping Tim Hudak…

Is there a Conservative Party candidate on the ballot in LFL&A?

Written by  |  Thursday, 08 May 2014 09:46  |  Published in Editorials
The short answer is yes. Randy Hillier is a Conservative MPP, a former leadership candidate for the party and until the dissolution of the legislature last week he was member of the Conservative Party Caucus. But at the very least, Hillier is about as likely to become a cabinet minister if Tim Hudak became the premier as Kathleen Wynne is. There is no indication that the two men have spoken since Hudak said Hillier was “not a team player” in September of last year, when he stripped Hillier of his position as Labour critic in his shadow cabinet at Queen’s Park. The demotion took place after an email Hillier had sent to the party questioning its ties to a construction company was leaked to the…

GREC Opened Too Soon, & The Children Paid The Price

Written by  |  Thursday, 01 May 2014 00:00  |  Published in Editorials
Editorial by Jeff Green Granite Ridge Education Centre is a few days away from its formal ribbon cutting/grand opening ceremony. A lot has been said in the community about the decision to build a comprehensive school for the region (which drew a mixed response); its location (a mixed to negative response); and its name (negative with only a few glimmers of support). The jury is still out, and likely will be for a few more years, about how good an educational and public use facility the school will be in the long term. One thing is clear, however; the decision to open the school in January of this year was done at the expense of the elementary students who are now attending Granite Ridge. While…

There Are Lots Of Trees, But This One Will Be Missied

Written by  |  Wednesday, 16 April 2014 20:00  |  Published in Editorials
Two machines have been slowly, steadily, inexorably dismantling the former Sharbot Lake High School over the past few weeks. The school, which was built in three stages over decades, is being taken apart one attached building at a time. Its replacement, Granite Ridge comprehensive school, built in a style that could be called 'modern institutional', is just a few feet away. Although the process was announced in advance, it has still been disheartening to see the building where so many children grew into young adults being torn open and turned into piles of rubble. Even though the school principal told the school community that removing trees was a regrettable part of a process that will be setting the stage for a new parking lot and…

Quebec & Ontario Elections And That Odd Lawsuit

Written by  |  Wednesday, 09 April 2014 20:00  |  Published in Editorials
Editorial by Jeff Green Among other things, the Quebec election demonstrated that a poor campaign by one party can shorten the attention span of the electorate. The massive corruption scandal that forced the retirement of Jean Charest and sent the Quebec Liberals into the penalty box of the opposition benches has been lifted after only 19 months. This happened even though a commission of inquiry has been dishing out revelation after revelation about kick- backs and other payments of all kinds to operatives connected to the Quebec Liberal Party over many years. How did this happen? The Parti Quebecois allowed the focus of the election to stray from the corruption scandals that would have secured their election, to talk about a referendum on sovereignty, and…

A Strategic Plan For An Organization In Flux

Written by  |  Thursday, 27 March 2014 15:56  |  Published in Editorials
The draft Frontenac County Strategic Plan, which is being promoted to local councils this month, focuses on three unfortunately named Wildly Important Goals (WIG). As someone who has attended too many municipal meetings in Frontenac County, “wild” is not a word that should be associated with anything to do with the County. But if you remove the wild, and call them Important Goals (IG) they are reasonable enough. The first IG is to focus on services delivery for the ageing population in the county, which is large and growing and will need more and more public services in the coming years. The second IG is to prepare for a post-landfill reality by looking towards a regional solution for dealing with waste once all the landfills…

The Quebec Secular Charter Does A Disservice To Secularists

Written by  |  Wednesday, 26 February 2014 19:00  |  Published in Editorials
One of the great things about politics in Canada over the last 30 years, in my view, is the gradual move away from a religious based laws and the ascendancy of the charter of rights and freedoms. A good example of this is the way the same-sex marriage issue has played out in this country. The only real argument against permitting same-sex couples from entering into the legal state of marriage was that a marriage is defined strictly as a union between a man and a women, and that argument comes from a religious definition of marriage. In a secular society allowing only opposite sex couples to enter into a legal marriage contract could not be sustained as a policy, and in the end it…

Lessons from a good day in Verona

Written by  |  Wednesday, 22 January 2014 08:47  |  Published in Editorials
A lot of things went right last Monday in Verona. When an electrical fire started at McMullen Manor, 28 people had to evacuate the building on a bitterly cold and blustery day. They did not know where to go at first and were sitting in their cars, but since one of them was a member of the Verona Free Methodist Church, soon they all trundled over to the church. From then on, from all accounts, the community sprung into action. The fire department was on the scene in minutes and managed to keep the damage to a bare minimum, but concerns over carbon monoxide and the need to be thorough meant that residents needed to stay away all day. Once the Free Methodist Church's minister,…

Will The Conservatives Now Throw The Senate Under The Bus?

Written by  |  Wednesday, 30 October 2013 20:00  |  Published in Editorials
Although I do not share the view that the Senate expense affair will have a long-term impact on anyone but those who actually touched the money, it is still all bad for the Conservative government and Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Whether you agree with the planned suspension of the three big-spending senators or consider that they are being sentenced before having the benefit of a trial, the whole mess, from start to finish, can only be attributed to the Conservative Party, and ultimately to Mr. Harper himself. He is the one who appointed the three senators. And at least in the case of Pamela Wallin and Mike Duffy, they were then extensively employed by the Conservative Party for fund-raising purposes. Someone in the Conservative Party…

Bedard Appeal May Have Ripple Effect On Land Claim

Written by  |  Thursday, 13 June 2013 00:58  |  Published in Editorials
The fallout from the ruling by former Justice Chadwick for the Algonquins of Ontario to the effect that the names of 500 members of the Shabot Obaadjiwan First Nation are to be removed from the Algonquin electors' list is just starting to become apparent. A number of those 500 people will be seriously affected by the decision because not only does it pull them out of the land claim, it also puts their very identity in limbo. The appeal only determined that the Algonquin descent of those who traced their ancestry to Simon Jude and Simon Gene Bedard cannot be verified. It did not determine that any other ancestry can be verified. The Bedard descendants, who have lived their entire lives with the knowledge that…

Hard Times For Journalists

Written by  |  Wednesday, 29 May 2013 20:58  |  Published in Editorials
The main benefits of being a journalist are two-fold. First, journalists can dress poorly. Second, journalists get to sit in judgement of public figures. This judgement lies at the root of all reportage - editorials and news reports alike (that’s a trade secret, news reports are only editorials masked as factual accounts - just as you always suspected) Journalists, and by extension, their readers, are free to revel in the inherent weaknesses of politicians, top level bureaucrats, and others whom they report on. It makes everyone feel better knowing that the people in positions of power can be as petty and foolish as themselves. Historically the only problem with journalism was the pay, but things have gotten worse. Now that social media rules the world,…
 

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