Rules Of Engagement

December 15, 2015

Yesterday with the news of a new Uber launch, this one called UberHOP, a commuter service of minivans and SUVs shepherding people from 4 downtown hotspots to the financial district at $5 a pop, I found myself in yet another social media spat. As so often happens with these things, the conversation went off in directions not exactly on point to the issue at hand. I swore at somebody, fairly quickly. Everybody eventually retreated into their familiar corners. Nothing much was solved.

donnybrook

Just for future arguments, let me state my Uber stance for quick reference:

  1. I’ve never suggested Uber anything be banned. I think it should be subject to the same kind of driver and car oversight the taxi industry faces in terms of insurance, safety, background checks, etc. Whether further regulation is required in terms of things like fare rates and passenger protocol or if we just open it wide like the wild west, leaving it to the market to decide seems to me to be the legislative battle ahead. If drastic changes for the industry are in store, I do think there must be some talk of compensation to those who’ve invested under previous terms and agreements, and played by the rules in place.
  2. As for UberHOP, have at it, yo. If you want and are able to pay $5 for the pleasure of a semi-private ride back-and-forth to work, it’s a free country. Ditto your fancy limousines, rickshaws and sedan chairs. Just don’t try convincing me such a service will contribute to improving public transit in general in the city. It won’t. Solving your problem does not solve the problem. Getting people who can afford $5 a trip around the city is not the problem the TTC faces at the moment.
    sedanchairEven the TTC could turn a profit if it had the luxury of only providing service along high demand routes. Unfortunately, that’s not how effective public transit works. I don’t know how much overlap between transit and Uber users there is in the neighbourhoods UberHOP is going to service but it’s not going to free up that much space for those still opting to use the King and Queen streetcars. A solution for some is not a solution for everyone.
  3. There are already on-the-books ways in which commuting from Liberty Village, Fort York, City Place and the Distillery District to the financial district could be improved during the morning and evening rush hours without charging more for it. A service like UberHOP helps us avoid addressing those possible solutions. In fact, by putting more vehicles on many of the same streets, competing for limited road space, UberHOP might contribute to making those commutes worse for more people. Time will tell, I guess.
  4. UberWhatever is not about sharing. It’s about profit-making. That’s fine. For some, that’s what makes the world go `round. Fair enough. Just stop trying to convince us it’s about anything else. It’s not.

moneymoneymoney

helpfully submitted by Cityslikr


It’s Not Paranoia If Everybody’s Out To Get You

November 14, 2012

There’s a culture of corruption down there and we’re going to put an end to it.

That’s then not councillor Doug Ford popping off during a Toronto Sun editorial board session alongside his councillor brother and then mayoral candidate Rob during the 2010 municipal election campaign.

Some two and a half years later, with now Mayor Rob Ford on trial for allegedly libelling restaurant owner George Foulidis over some comments he made during the above gabfest with the Sun, here’s now Councillor Doug Ford’s opinion of the proceedings.

It’s 100 per cent political. It’s all politics. Every court case Rob’s in is all about politics, you know that…We’re here to represent the people. We’ll take the brunt for the people.

Is there no sense of shame that runs through the Ford family? Is nothing ever their responsibility? Read through the excerpts of the Sun piece, with Doug goading his brother to increasingly higher degrees of outlandish, unsubstantiated claims about the workings of City Hall. “…there’s more corruption and skullduggery going in there than I’ve ever seen in my life.” “And if that Tuggs deal doesn’t stink to high heaven, I, I …” “The system’s broken… they’d be in front of a grand jury, they’d be indicted and they’d be in jail right now. “ “That’s corruption, plain and simple.” “That’s illegal. They (ought to) call the police and investigate that.”

I don’t know if anything that was said will be considered libel by the court. What I do know is that the Brothers Ford threw around a lot of innuendo which they couldn’t back up with actual… what do you call that again?… proof. Now the mayor is on trial and all Councillor Ford can see is an enemy driven conspiracy against them. “It’s all politics.” Nothing whatsoever to do with accepting responsibility for the words you speak or the actions you take.

It would be shockingly depressing if it weren’t routine behaviour from the mayor, his brother and their apologists.

chidingly if tanly submitted by Cityslikr


A Ban On Common Sense

June 14, 2012

I don’t know if a gun or bullet ban would actually work in reducing gun crime in Toronto.

That’s not what this is about

But there’s been a lot of ban talk around these parts lately. Last week it was plastic bags. This week, Councillor Adam Vaughan floated the notion of banning handguns and bullets in the city in the wake of a shooting in the food court of the Eaton Centre on June 2nd.

Turns out, lots of people don’t care for bans of any sort. What gives society the right to tell me what and what I can or cannot do with plastic bags, guns, bullets, pesticides or… [fill in the blank here]? Also, it turns out in terms of firearms, there’s a surprising number of Torontonians who believe we are living in the United States of America and they have some sort of constitutional right to bear arms.

But that’s for another time.

What perplexes me about the gun ban discussion is the preponderance of those opposed to the idea relying on the argument that criminals aren’t going to care about no stinkin’ ban. They’ll get their greasy hands on any sort of weaponry they want. It’s only law abiding gun owners who’ll have to give up their hobby.
The long gun registry redux.

If this is your case against a ban, couldn’t we extend it to any law a society makes?

There’s always going to be somebody who’s going to figure out some way around every law. Why institute an income tax? Criminals don’t pay income taxes. We threaten to fine people caught throwing litter on the streets but some people don’t give a hoot and they still pollute anyway. Why bother saying they can’t?

Without transgression, there’d be no need for laws. Apparently however, we’ve always had malcontents and ne’er-do-wells amongst us, at least since biblical times. Thus, the 10 Commandments. I imagine when Moses came down from the mountain with his tablets of rules and regulations and bans, Old Testament libertarians out there were simply indignant. “Who the fuck is this god guy telling us who we can and cannot covet?”

The other line of reasoning in arguing against the ban points out the futility of our drug prohibition. Like America’s alcohol ban nearly a century ago, our war on drugs has been a categorical failure. Drugs are easily accessible to those wanting them and criminal activity blossoms from those fighting to supply the demand.

So it follows, a gun pay wouldn’t get rid of guns because, a ban is a ban is a ban.

I’ve been trying to work through this particular argument. On the surface it’s a compelling one. Until you realize it’s really an n of 1. In the case of drugs, yes, I think the evidence shows that the prohibition not only doesn’t work but it’s been counter-productive. It’s increased crime rather than decreased it.

Contemplating a ban on handguns or bullets is much more analogous, however, to the ban on plastic bags than the one on drugs. You have legit gun owners claiming they have a right to own a firearm or two. Plastic bag fans claim they too have a right to shop using plastic bags and if they are denied that right, they will take their money to nearby, more plastic bag friendly jurisdictions. An argument echoed by gunsters. They will just go elsewhere for their firearms. Hell, they already are.

Yet, where plastic bags have been banned, there’s been a decrease in plastic bag use. “China ban saves 40 million plastic bags”. What makes guns so different?

Of course, a ban won’t eliminate guns from within our city limits. I don’t think anyone’s argued that it would. But I have trouble with the idea that it won’t reduce the number of firearms in the city even if it’s mostly from the possession of those legal gun owners. And to my mind, that’s not a bad thing because if there’s one aspect of this debate that is beyond dispute is that the presence of more firearms equals more death and injury by firearms. Don’t believe me? Take it up with the Harvard School of Public Health.

Laws shouldn’t be made (or not) on the basis of criminals not adhering to them. We should apply a basic cost-benefit analysis. What’s the cost to society as a whole to handing out plastic bags versus the benefits to us of the bags? Ditto gun ownership. What cost does gun ownership have on society versus the individual benefits of… target shooting.

Let’s have that discussion instead of the heated but empty one that’s happening now.

bandaidly submitted by Cityslikr


Should Politics Trump Everything?

March 12, 2012

Emerging from a 3 day battle with some godless microbe and 72 hours of highly potent neocitran-boozie concoction to kill it into submission, I’m scanning the #TOpoli with a mixture of disbelief and.. something else that is beyond my vocabulary at the moment. Like, I’m really groggy and quite possibly drifting in and out of consciousness, unable to fully judge if I’m asleep or awake.

Is this how the more casual observers of the municipal political scene here in Toronto feel when reading through the news? An out-of-body experience, this can’t really be happening kind of sensation? This is all a joke, right? This is not how a major metropolitan city conducts itself, is it?

On their regular Sunday afternoon radio slot, the mayor and his councillor brother brag about the restraint shown when the councillor was verbally accosted by a bike courier. “He (courier) was cursing and swearing with some nasty words,” Councillor Ford said. “I told him that if I wasn’t an elected official I would kick his ass.” He so would’ve too! He really would’ve! “The mayor said there would have been ‘one less courier to worry about’ if there was an incident. “Doug took kick-boxing for six years and has quick feet,” Mayor Ford said.

No, no, no, no, no. Our mayor did not just say that out loud, over the wireless, as some sort of populist bromide. My big brother’s tough as nails! Ford tough! You know how I know that’s all just a figment of my imagination? Later on in the show when talking about bullying in schools with a newly elected TDSB trustee, Councillor Ford claimed: “We never had bullies in our school. We’d always take care of them if there was.”

No semi-sentient adult being could be that self-unaware to not check themselves before blurting out such revelatory personality traits. I’d punch somebody for bad-mouthing me if there weren’t any repercussions. We didn’t have a bully problem because we ‘took care’ of anybody we thought were bullies…

It’s the virus in my bloodstream making me hear that, right? Some sort of auditory hallucination brought on by my mistakenly having mixed 151 proof rum with my cold medication. My mind’s just fucking with me at this point surely.

But then I wake up this morning to read that there’s a court motion afoot to oust Mayor Ford from office. Good god! Is the fever back? This can’t be—it’s Monday of March break. Nothing’s supposed to happen at City Hall. Will I never be free of this damned contagion that’s playing with my mind?!

For a full account of what’s allegedly happening, read Hamutal Dotan at the Torontoist and John McGrath at Open File TO but in short, way back in 2010, then Councillor Rob Ford used City Hall stationery to solicit donations including from some known lobbyists for his football charity. Integrity Commissioner ruled it a no-no, orders the councillor to pay back whatever donations he received. He claims he can’t because it’s already been spent on football equipment and the like. Integrity Commissioner then insists it has to come out of his pocket. In August 2010, city council agrees.

Some 18 months later and now mayor, Rob Ford still hadn’t complied with the ruling. At last month’s council meeting, a motion is presented and passed that overturns the previous council’s ruling, freeing the mayor of the obligation of paying back the $3150.00. Fine. Whatever. A little greasy but, hey, politics is never cut and dry.

Except today, in an application to the Ontario Superior Court, it’s alleged that the mayor violated the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act. How? Not only did he vote on the item that waived his obligation to reimburse donors $3150 out of his own pocket but he spoke up in defence of his actions before doing so.

The mind boggles…And I don’t think it’s just the pharmaceuticals coursing through my brain.

I mean, last week I watched the mayor recuse himself from a debate and vote on something to do with the Boardwalk Café because he’s involved in some sort of litigation with the restaurant. But somehow this didn’t cross his mind as a possible conflict of interest? Someone on his staff? One of his political allies?

You’ve been ordered to repay $3150 out of your own pocket and it doesn’t strike you as a little iffy to be part of the debate and vote? There’s absolutely nothing that smacks of a conflict of interest about participating in and voting on an item that will save you personally $3150? Does that not seem simply incomprehensible to everyone else aside from just me and my medication?

I am equally as perplexed by the reaction to all this by some of the mayor’s most vocal critics. Whether, if found in violation, the mayor should be removed from office and barred 7 years from seeking office is a bit extreme, we can chat about but to shy away from this as politically bad optics or playing right into the hands of the persecution complex right wing politicians so love to wallow in, seems to be, well, a dereliction of duty frankly. (Hee, hee. Hee, hee. He said ‘doody’.)

Of course, the mayor and his supporters are going to run with this, citing it as proof the left wing is simply intent on driving the mayor from office and denying them their democratic rights, etc., etc., blah, blah, blah. Witch hunt! Dirty politics! Sore losers! That’s what they do. Conservatives gotta embrace victimhood.

But to shrug this off as bad politics or risky strategy? If this is pursued, it might play right into the hands of the mayor’s underdog status? That’s almost as cynical as how the right’s determined to play this.

To view this as some sort of ‘technicality’ is to accept questionable behaviour on the part of our elected officials as just part of doing business. Rob Ford repeatedly shrugged off requests to repay money the Integrity Commissioner ordered him to pay and then, as mayor, took part in the debate and vote to overturn the city councils move to uphold the Integrity Commissioner’s ruling. Something’s not quite right about that and ignoring it for fear of playing to his base come 2014 renders our democratic system somewhat ethically malleable.

Or am I missing something here, my logic and reasoning floating in a sea of medically enhanced fluid?

medicatedly submitted by Cityslikr


Swimming With Sharks

November 15, 2011

As Cityslikr rails at the world about the injustices inflicted upon the cyclist (Oops! There he goes now, on about #OccupyTO), I quietly type away in a small corner of the office, smug in my self-assurance of being more reasonable, less vitriolic, cool in my humours as Ben Jonson might say. Such incensed outbursts, viscerally generated confrontations only serve to further the divide and heighten the tension already existing between the two aggrieved parties. Vulnerable cyclists on one side. Put upon motorists on the other.

I too attended yesterday’s ghost ride in memory of Jenna Morrison. It was moving (no pun attended) but even more than that to someone not personally connected to her death, there was a feeling of empowerment. Thousands of cyclists taking charge of the city’s streets however fleetingly. (There’s another unintended pun in there somewhere.) Power in numbers. A critical mass.

Much of that sense was deflated later in the day when it was announced that no charges would be laid against the driver involved in the accident. Not that there was any cause for there to be. It seems the accident was just that. A horrible course of events involving misjudgement, perhaps, and unpreparedness for dealing with the contingencies of downtown driving that includes cyclists. Such things will happen, we are told. C’est la vie.

And at the end of the day

Might makes right and there’s no having to justify your actions. Today there’s been all sorts of second guessing of the victims operation of her bicycle in the situation, much of it stemming around her riding in the truck’s ‘blind spot’. Apparently it is just a fact of life that we have vehicles on our roads with gaping blind spots that everyone else should be aware of while sharing space with them.

That stops me up even just writing that. Wouldn’t a rational society look at that and come to the conclusion that something should be done to reduce vehicles’ blind spots or, at least, lessen the possibility of injuries and death because of it? Once more in reaction to the death of a cyclist, calls have gone up to install safety bars on trucks where pedestrians and those on bicycles could slip or be dragged under the wheels. A coroner called for just that in 1998. But we collectively shrugged our shoulders, bemoaned tying up the business of commerce in more red tape, and weighed the cost-benefit ratio of yet another dead cyclist. What are you going to do? It is what it is, right?

Similarly, it was noted by a police officer that the truck involved in last week’s accident didn’t have a convex mirror on the passenger side which may have reduced the ‘blind spot’ and even helped the driver spot the cyclist beside him. “It is not required by law,” said Constable Hugh Smith, “but I drive large trucks and train people and I wouldn’t go anywhere without a convex mirror on both sides.” Why wouldn’t that be mandatory for trucks instead of this laissez-faire attitude of lethal blind spots as just a part of doing business?

I’m not just talking about bicycle safety. It’s a public safety issue. And if governments aren’t going to act to ensure that, what about the courts? The civil courts. If governments fail to enact recommendations made by coroners, resulting in further deaths, is there a precedent in Canadian law to take them to court and sue them for something like negligence? (You might have noticed at about this point that I’m no lawyer.)

One death does not mean only one less bike rider on the road. It has a multiplier effect. Others will stop riding out of concern for their own personal safety. Certainly children won’t be encouraged to look at cycling as a viable mode of transit. That’s amplified if our elected officials are seen to be less than concerned about it. It’s pushed further out to the fringe. My heart bleeds for you and all that but, seriously, if want to stay safe out there on the roads, drive a car, a truck, the bigger, the better.

Who benefits from that?

submitted by Urban Sophisticat


Time For A Little Game Of Chicken

September 30, 2011

Despite the divisive and highly acrimonious environment that has settled over council chambers at City Hall these days, through all the sniping and partisan hackery, there is one item that could easily muster the support of more than a 2/3s majority of councillors. This city is being severely short-changed financially by the two levels of senior government, and have been for going on 20 years now. It is not a situation unique to Toronto or other municipalities in this province. It’s happening nationally. Listen to Calgary’s mayor, Naheed Nenshi. It’s taking place in the United States. Witness Chicago’s budget battles.

The difference of opinion, however, arises over what exactly to do about it.

While many of the right leaning councillors acknowledge the problem, their solution seems to consist of shrugging their shoulders and saying, what are you gonna do. We’ve tried and tried with very little to show for it. Let’s move on. It doesn’t hurt that the lack of proper funding plays into their desire to shrink local government down to size. Any case they might make for a more sound fiscal arrangement between the city, the province and the federal government is undercut by the mayor’s refusal to stop claiming that we don’t have a revenue problem.

Still, they do have a point. Previous administrations have endeavoured to secure not only more money from Queen’s Park and Ottawa (in most cases, money they once provided) but also to establish a stable funding formula in order to move past the almost ad hoc, yearly struggles to balance our books. All to only limited success.

Moderate councillors suggest we keep on keeping on, nagging away at our deadbeat provincial and federal politician to do the right thing and start ponying up the cash they owe us. On Tuesday, Councillor Pam McConnell successfully put through a motion for the City Solicitor “…to report to the Executive Committee on the legal implications of the allocation, funding and downloading of Provincial responsibilities to municipalities including a comparison of how municipalities in other provinces have responded to provincial downloading pursuant to the British North America Act and the Constitution Act, 1982.” The BNA Act? Chortles were heard from the council floor. Or maybe that wasn’t chortling. Maybe it was the sound of straw clutching.

But why not seek legal counsel on this issue? We are, after all, legally bound as nothing more than ‘creatures of the province’. Doesn’t that entail a degree of responsibility on the province’s part to keep us properly fed and housed? Aren’t even the lowliest of creatures entitled to move about freely, outside the cage of inadequate transit? (Yeah, I went there.)

Yes, yes, yes. Of course, go about your quixotic tilt. Councillor MacConnell’s motion passed 39-6, with only the mayor and some of his hardest core supporters voting against as well as.. what? Councillor Josh Matlow? What up with that, Councillor?

(Nope.. nope.. Do not get distracted by the curious case of Councillor Josh Matlow’s centrism. That’s… another post entirely.)

In any case, that’s more long term thinking. What about the here and now? Dire warnings rang out over the course of the meeting’s two days that if we could not get our fiscal house in order, if we could not come to some sort of agreement between service cuts and tax hikes, if we could not balance our budget as we were legally mandated to do, as we have every year previously, well, provincial caretakers would swoop down from their perch at Queen’s Park and do it for us. Oh, the shame! Oh, the horror!

You know what? Sometimes I think we should just dare the province to do it. One budget year, we just simply acknowledge that we have not been given the proper tools to do the job adequately and that instead of inflicting damage upon the city and the people living within it, we choose instead not to balance our books. Like the other two levels of government do, we run an operating deficit.

And if the province has a problem with that, hey, come on down, folks. You try it. You get your hands dirty, slashing and burning. You take the heat from citizens outraged at tax hikes. Yeah. Not so easy, is it?

Maybe the time for playing nice has come and gone. Maybe it’s time to up the ante a little. To, I don’t know, start withholding any money we normally pass along in the form of HST payments. The feds owe us some back taxes? Queen’s Park has some outstanding fines? We’ll just take that off the cheque we’re cutting for you, shall we?

Now, as with any belligerence married to a woeful lack of understanding about the implications, ramifications or even possibility of such gestures, my suggestion comes with a Wikipedia-like citation needed. All I’m saying is that we start exploring different approaches to the dysfunctional manner of our relationship to the other levels of government. Playing nice, rolling over and hoping for a rub of the tummy and the occasional bone thrown our way is not proving to be the healthiest of methods. Been there. Done that. And the fucking t-shirt is about 3 sizes too small.

Desperate times call for desperate measures. A more aggressive approach may be in order. By any means necessary. It’s time we thought of ways to beat our federal and provincial representatives out from the bushes where they’ve been hiding, avoiding their responsibility. We need them to come to the table and negotiate not from a position of power but as equal partners. Asking politely hasn’t worked to date. We need to start demanding. To do that, we just might have to upset an applecart or two.

feistily submitted by Cityslikr


Responding To Our Responders

February 19, 2011

So we here at All Fired Up in the Big Smoke received, if not a deluge of comments to our post from a couple days ago, A Plea to Conservatives Everywhere, let’s call it a handful. A good percentage of which were from almost exclusively well-behaved self-described conservatives taking exception to much of what we’d written. It would’ve been time-consumingly impossible to respond to each one individually. Instead, we’re lumping them together into a single response post which, undoubtedly, will look as if we’re misrepresenting what everyone wrote and deceptively framing the terms of debate in order to make ourselves seem much smarter than we actually are.

Alas, the burden of ultimate editorial control.

There seemed to be four currents of argument running through the anti-comments that came in. When we asked to be shown “…how further corporate tax cuts will kick start our economy,” we got a lesson in the theory of corporate taxes. Yes, we understand the concept. We just weren’t sure where the proof was that cutting them further at this particular time was going to help. Unless you’re one of those anti-Keynesian absolutists, reducing spending along with taxes in such an anemic state of recovery doesn’t make a whole lot of economic sense.

Besides, we’ve been hacking away at corporate tax rates both federally and provincially for a few years now, haven’t we? When should we expect to see positive results? And if corporate tax cuts are such an effective weapon in stimulating the economy, why not lobby for their complete removal? Eliminate them entirely. If 13% is going to help, why not 0? Point to a jurisdiction with significantly lower corporate tax rates than ours are currently and say, see? They work. And if I can’t find one, like say Mexico, that counters your argument, I’ll lay down my sword.

A number of commenters suggested the burden was on me (or the entire Left) to prove that de-regulation and less oversight was the source of the global financial meltdown. I thought they already had. Google Nobel Prize winning Paul Krugman and see what he’s been saying over the last couple years. Or Jeffrey Sachs if he’s more to your economic taste. Check out Matt Taibbi in Rolling Stone for the naked criminality at the very heart of the meltdown. Read Michael Lewis’s The Big Short or Andrew Ross Sorkin’s Too Big To Fail. Watch Charles Ferguson’s documentary, Inside Job. The case has been made quite definitively. You dispute it? You refute it.

And on a couple little side notes. One commenter asked if we wanted to return to the days of the Glass-Steagall Act “…which limited credit growth and therefore slowed down economic growth…” Errr, am I wrong in remembering that the full repeal of Glass-Steagall occurred in 1999, at the height of one of the biggest economic expansions in history? So how exactly did it slow down economic growth? The commenter then went on to point out that no Canadian banks failed due to smart regulations — which, while in opposition, the current Conservative government fought against — and kind of proves my point for me, doesn’t it? We missed the brunt of the financial shitstorm because of government regulation and oversight not because a lack of it. Or am I missing something?

“Prove this whole trickle-down theory to me,” I taunted. “How rising tides raise all boats.” That brought forth a litany of indignation, mostly in two forms. One, things were much better now than they were 100 years ago, owing to the miracle of free market capitalism. OK, sure. But my line of attack wasn’t necessarily directed at the idea of free market capitalism, only how it’s been conducted in the last 30 years or so. Cast your minds back, 50, 60 years ago, to the more immediate post-War era. Where governments taxed the richest of the rich more prodigiously and spent massively on things like infrastructure, established universal health care and sent men to the moon. An era when a single bread winner could buy a house, raise a family, put the kids through college and retire comfortably.

A picture, I’m sure, more idyllic than it actually was but one that is a pipe dream nowadays. Much of our prosperity is built on a mountain of debt. Two income households are the norm. Post-secondary education has grown into an onerous financial burden that is increasingly failing to deliver on its promise of leading to better lives.

Secondly, please, please, please stop bringing up China and India when attempting to defend modern day capitalism. Yes, millions of people are climbing their way out of poverty. And yes, China in particular has turned away from its Maoist past and heartily embraced aspects of the free market. But as another commenter pointed out, both countries remain planned economies, control highly centralized. If our governments here attempted to intrude into the economy the way the Chinese and Indian governments do, conservatives would howl in outrage before soiling themselves and passing out. Witness the reaction to the various stimulus packages.

Finally, conservative commenters took exception to our painting them all with the same brush. There were pro-environmental conservatives who believed in anthropogenic climate change. Conservatives who suspected the War on Drugs was a bust. Pro-choice conservatives. Non-Rob Ford voting conservatives.

Fair enough but that type of red Toryism or socially liberal conservatism is hardly in the ascendancy. Your movement has been hijacked by the radicals under your umbrella and they’ve seized Washington, Ottawa and city hall in Toronto. They’re attacking women’s rights. They’re declaring climate change hokum and maybe even beneficial. The federal Conservative government is trying to close down a safe injection site in Vancouver in the face of overwhelming evidence of its positive contribution. At the same time they’re attempting to roll back drug laws to a Draconian state in order to fill the prisons that they are building. These neocons hate government and everything it stands for.

They don’t believe much of anything you’re claiming to believe. In fact, your views sound much closer to my left wing bias. So why are you fighting me and not those who are doing great damage to your conservative brand and giving you all a bad name?

respondingly submitted by Cityslikr