I am not proud to admit, but not too long ago, I was part of the apathetic voters committee. The first time that I made an informed voting decision was earlier this year during the Canadian federal election. Previously, I was always afraid to make an uninformed decision, and vote for the wrong party.
Throughout the federal and provincial elections, I have tried to keep informed through the media and reading the platforms by the various parties, so that I can make the best decision I can today.
I do not claim to have all the facts. This is information I have gathered to the best of my knowledge. Please do your own research! :)
Personal Finances and Politics
To be honest, if I hadn’t started to get serious with my own finances, I probably wouldn’t be as interested in the well-being of my country’s or my provinces well being. Now, when a party pitches a platform, I try to understand to not only understand how the service or product will impact me but how it’s feasible for the government to endorse it. Obviously, the well being of a country or province is much more complicated than taking care of just myself and my finances, but it is the starting point that I use.
Ontarians, Go Vote!!
Before I continue, I want to encourage everyone to always go out and vote. Read up on your various leaders platforms and make your say count. Ontarians, this election is very close and every vote counts!
There are a number of sites and articles summarizing the platforms of various parties, if you don’t have the time (or patience) to read them their individual platforms. Keep in mind that there are always biases depending on which organization or individual who put together the summary.
I am voting Liberal
I’m just going to put it out there. I’m voting for the Liberal party this provincial election.
I think the McGuinty government has been doing a great job running the province, despite the downturn in the economy in recent years. Investment in healthcare, education, green energy and re-training our work force are all areas where I have personally experienced a significant improvement.
What I like from the Liberal Platform:
- Tax credit for businesses to hire skilled new comers Canadian work experience
I know far too many well-educated and highly skilled friends and family who have come to Canada, only to be severely under employed. There is nothing wrong with being a security guard, cabbie or factory worker, I think they are very noble professions that work very hard. However, it is not efficient use of a province’s labour resources, and also a disincentive for other skilled new comers to make Ontario their home if they can’t find good work.
In addition, I see the credit to be similar to the credit offered to businesses for hiring students to give them a foot in the door.
- Commitment to investing in green energy programs and innovation
Programs, such as the Feed-in-Tariff, conservation programs for endangered species and preservation of our land and forests while creating jobs that require skilled individuals.
- Providing more assistance to seniors including in-home health care and tax credit for accessible home renovations
- Hiring more nurses and opening more nurse practitioner-led clinics
I only recently understood how expensive it was to keep a patient in a hospital. When my grandmother was under going chemo for cancer and then in remission, she had to stay at the hospital because no one was at home to care for her.
Healthcare assistance at home would have been something that would have worked well for my family, since my grandmother could be comfortable and be surrounded by her family. While at the same time, saving the government money, since the cost of keeping a patient in the hospital is the most expensive way to care for a patient.
This is what I have against Tim Hudak’s Progressive Conservative party:
- He started off negative
I loathe when a party goes negative. I feel it shows poor sportsmanship and it just leave a bad taste in my mouth. I mean, are we really still name calling? Please.
I’m sure all Ontarians are familiar with the “tax man” ad. The funny thing is, is that the PC’s have no intention of getting rid of the HST (because it is great for businesses), or the health tax. The eco-tax is gone, anyway. And “future taxes”? Any party can introduce future taxes. Including his.
- He always criticizes McGuinty, but never offers much of a platform
In every speaking engagement or interview I’ve watched or listened to, he’s always the first to bash the McGuinty government. But never offers much about his own platform, at least not in detail. Always vague promises of putting more money back into our pockets and “making life more affordable.”
This morning, on CBC, when asked outright what his platform included, Hudak promised to get rid of Ontario’s gridlock. When asked how, he said that he would leave that up to individual municipalities to decide how to spend their money. In my head: So… he’s going to solve gridlock by doing … nothing?
- His poor attitude towards the business tax credit for skilled immigrants
I always hate it when politicians talk down to their audience, and treat them like they are stupid.
I felt that he blew the tax credit out of proportion and instead, started to peg the tax credit as immigrants taking away jobs from hard-working Ontarians. As if to suggest immigrants aren’t Ontarians, as well.
As I said above, I see the tax credit similar to giving tax credits to companies for hiring students. I don’t see anyone throwing around ageist or racists comments about that.
- Removing the hydro debt repayment plan from home owner hydro bills.
You can read more detail about it here and here. The just of it is that Ontario had to borrow $7.8 billion in 1999 to pay off remaining debt. Now, 20 years later, Hudak declares the debt has been paid because altogether they have made $7.8 billion in debt payments.
As all of us PFers who have every made a mortgage payment or credit card payment know his statement is ludicrous. Ummm… interest payments, Mr. Hudak?
- His underhanded actions regarding misinforming voters about sex education in elementary schools
Sex education is a touchy topic. I’m sure it can be debated for a long time, with many, many different perspectives.
What I found disturbing and underhanded was Hudak’s party distributed these brochures and even translated to other languages the incorrectly quoted and paraphrased information. This shows complete lack of respect for voters, and once again, is talking down to his voters. Read more about it here and here.
And now I will step off my soap box. If you are still reading this far, thank you – now go out and vote.