In Your Own Backyard

Is anybody else at all weirded out about the fact Toronto’s incumbent mayor is holding his first big re-election fundraiser beyond this city’s limits? suspicious2Or that, back in 2010, more than one-third of his campaign donations came from non-Toronto residents? I don’t know. Maybe it’s standard operating procedure.

In some ways, it makes sense.

As goes Toronto, so goes the region, I’ve heard it said. There’s a wider vested interest in how the city fares, out past the 416 and into 905. Lots of people who don’t call it home have a business, do business, go about their business here in Toronto. It’s only fair that they’re allowed some kind of say as to whom we elect to run things.

I guess.

Maybe I wouldn’t find it so disturbing if this support wasn’t lavished upon such an anti-urban candidate. It comes across as if he’s doing the bidding of the largely suburban area that encircles the city. Reflecting the pre-amalgamated Toronto mindset of many living in both the GTA’s inner and outer suburbs, the Toronto mayor has more in common with the municipalities of Halton, Peel, York and Durham than he does with the one he was elected to represent. surroundedHe’s one of them. An enemy in our midst.

That comes across sounding a little paranoid, doesn’t it. I’ve fallen into that us-versus-them mentality. It could just as well be a case of, I don’t know, going with a winner although, at this point of time, it’s hard to figure out who would shell out $300 a plate in support of Mayor Ford. How is more of the same for another 4 years going to help anyone, anywhere around these parts?

So, I guess it simply comes down to political stripe. A conservative is a conservative is a conservative, good or bad, crack smoking, known to police or not. Their guy is better than the other guy, regardless.

Ultimately I think the thing that bugs me most about this is that it seems anyone residing outside of Toronto can donate to a candidate here and receive the city issued rebate that comes with it. rebateSomething just doesn’t sit right about that. I’m not sure why any city would want to encourage candidate donations from outside its boundaries. You’re just giving money away that, in all likelihood, will be spent outside of the local economy.

My inclination would be to restrict campaign donations to only eligible voters. It just seems clear and easy. But that’s probably too restrictive or exclusive. So how about only residents and those owning a business in the city qualify to donate to municipal candidates? That doesn’t seem unreasonable.

But maybe if you really think it’s important and democratic to be able to donate to the candidate of your choice no matter where they are, donate away. Just don’t expect to be reimbursed or subsidized for it. I already suspect your motives. I certainly don’t want to enable them.


suspiciously submitted by Cityslikr

16 Responses to In Your Own Backyard

  1. GW says:

    The tone of some parts of this post seem very out of sync with your statement in a previous post that suburbanites and downtowners “are not complete aliens to one another”. It seems what you’re saying this time around is that not only are “car-centric, pay-as-you-go minded” suburbanites aliens to the good progressive folks of the core, but enemy aliens to boot.

    I find it hard to believe that people, whether in or outside of the current boundaries of the City of Toronto, are throwing their support behind Ford because they’re “anti-urban” or consider him to be so. If they were so anti-urban, one would think they wouldn’t have chosen to living in a city (even in its outlying, less populated regions). One would think a more natural place for someone who was truly “anti-urban” would be a small town or rural community.

    And is it really fair to automatically label someone who isn’t favourably disposed towards “New Urbanism”, the car-free movement or the theories of Jane Jacobs “anti-urban”?

  2. Donation rebates are not the only “outward flow” of City money to the ‘burbs.

    A high-number of Toronto Fire, Police, TTC & even City of Toronto Exec staff reside “outside the city limits”, so their salaries flow “outward” too – without seeing ANY of it return as Property Tax, etc back to the City.

    I’d like to see “qualify as a resident” Requirements like Toronto Councillors applied to BOTH Donors & Employees.

    If you just want to fix the DONATION issue – I would just kill the rebate program all together…as a 75% rebate (*plus a contact list built via City business) – only increases the already brutal “Incumbent Advantage” that City Councillors have.

  3. steve says:

    There is a myth that Toronto sucks all the money out of the province and pours it down a black hole of corruption and waste. As untrue as that is, Toronto pours billions of dollars into the province with little return to the city there are those mostly outside the downtown core that feel they would be better off if they destroy Toronto. Rob Ford believes this myth as do most conservatives. Witness Mike Harris and Tim Hudak. The liberals may not be out to destroy Toronto but they are unwilling to deal fairly with the city in fear of alienating those that believe that myth.

  4. Sonny says:

    It is a bit disturbing that 33.5% of Rob’s donors do not reside in Toronto but had influence in his campaign and got 75% back from the people of Toronto.
    The Italians have too much power relative to their numbers. So it would be interesting to see the who’s who at the Riviera in Vaughan. Maybe he’ll sell some bubbleheads.(smile)
    Not surprising is that most of “Fraud Nation” that calls into Newstalk1010 do not reside in “Toronto” either.

    • Simon Says says:

      You are one bigoted dude! “Italians have too much power!” You are a racist. Just admit it and move on.

      • Sonny says:

        Relative to their numbers, Italians are about 5% of Toronto’s population. If you go to City Hall you will find that a disproportionate number of Council and staff are…

      • Simon Says says:

        You have issues my friend, issues. Who cares what someone’s background or heritage is. They are Torontoians, they are Canadians and they are working.

        You constantly make comments about people’s ethnicity on this blog. It is not very progressive of you, is it?

  5. Ron Wm. Hurlbut says:

    Here’s the real story folks.

    The 905 want Subways, Subways, Sundays…

    Folks from Mississauga pack the Bloor line at Kipling and Islington filling all the seats during the am rush, leaving Torontonians standing.

    Same as the folks from Woodbridge, Maple and Vaughan will be packing the extended Spadina-York University line.

    Likewise, the folks from Richmond Hill and Markham pack the Yonge line at Finch.

    Lastly it will be those interlopers from Pickering that clamor for the best seats at Scarborough Town Center on their extended Danforth line.

    Yes Sir, the 905 DESERVES Subways, Subways, Subways!

    And Rob Fore is the man to give them…

    • Sonny says:

      When Sorbara was the Finance Minister he was able to get funding for the 1 line to go up to Vaughan…
      Mississauga has that Conservative Hazel

      • Simon Says says:

        A continuation of Sonny’s “The Pasta Conspiracy in the GTA”

      • Sonny says:

        Last night, I was at the UofT for Robert Putnam’s speech on the Opportunity Gap in America. After Senator Segal’s response and suggestion of Canadian solutions. Guess who walks by my aisle? I saw his pock marked face and said “Greg” and Sorbara looked over.
        Coincidentally the Sorbara Group had a lot of properties along the Subway extention route…

      • Simon Says says:

        Whoa…now you are making fun of someone’s face?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: