Babel-on-the-Bay: The trial of Kathleen Wynne.

The trial is set to begin in Sudbury, Ontario on September 7. We would ignore the trial and its political implications if it did not involve the present Premier of Ontario. Mind you Kathleen Wynne will spend most of the trial on the sidelines. She is not charged with a crime. She has lackeys for ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Barrie’s Bad Boy Brown.

There is no reason to worry. The next provincial election is not scheduled until June 7 next year. By then, we should expect that far more Ontario voters are going to realize what a screw-up Brown would be as premier. It is not that he is dishonest, devious and dumb, we have had all those ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Better Living with Bitumen.

Reading an apologist for Alberta’s tar sands exploiters the other day, we learned that the little town of Hardisty, Alberta is the hub of a North American maze of pipelines. This town of 550 people can store up to 25 million barrels of diluted bitumen before sending it east, south or west by pipeline or ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: She could use her married name.

The question was: What would help Brian Mulroney’s daughter win a seat in the Legislature in the next Ontario provincial election? The obvious answer is to use a different name. It might be a quarter century since Canadian voters turfed Brian Mulroney’s Conservatives (then led by Kim Campbell) and left the party with just two ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Murray dumps Wynne.

“Don’t let the door handle hit you in the ass on the way out, Glen!” The good news is that Ontario Environment Minister Glen Murray is leaving the Wynne cabinet in Ontario. The bad news is that his new job is as executive director of Alberta’s namby-pamby Pembina Institute. It should suit him. It was ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: It’s the wrong argument on minimum wage.

Arguing about how many in Ontario work for a minimum wage is silly. Governments always seem to be trailing the curve on this problem. It is the people who are falling behind who need to get ahead of the poverty line. Can you imagine a serious writer suggesting that a higher minimum wage is unnecessary ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Jagmeet Singh: Not just a pretty face.

The New Democratic Party’s federal leadership race is getting a little more heated. With less than two months to go, the race has taken on some disturbing aspects of the last Conservative leadership in Ontario. It is turning into Jagmeet Singh’s race to win if he is using the same tactics as Ontario Conservative winner ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: The marriage of Alberta’s Alt-right.

Can you not just visualize Stan Laurel, in the person of Brian Jean, saying to Oliver Hardy, in the person of Jason Kenney, “Well here’s another nice mess you’ve gotten us into.” The mess they are into is a new provincial party in Alberta that could earn the enmity of the rest of Canada. It ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Brown’s battling beginnings.

It is getting so bad that even PostMedia writers are wondering when Ontario Conservative Leader Patrick Brown is going to show some maturity. They are starting to question Brown’s ability to run a political party. He is certainly not getting the nomination process right. Many want to write it off to the vulnerability of the ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Change the future; Not the past.

It seems to be the rage these days to want to tear down icons of the past. Why are we wasting so much time, rhetoric and effort in this pursuit? What can it gain us if we do not look to our future? There is a framed front page of the Toronto Globe from 1893 ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Is there any hope for Horwath?

Every once in a while, we are reminded that there are three parties at play for the right to hold the lease on the Pink Palace looking down University Avenue from Queen’s Park. We know lots about the Liberals that currently hold the lease. We know more than we want to know about the Conservatives ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: It’s always controversy for PC leader Brown.

The leader of Ontario Conservatives has too many balls in the air. Here he is trying to run the strategy, organize the electoral districts, pick the candidates and run the nomination meetings. The only jobs he has forgotten is to show leadership and to help the party choose policies. Since the party seems to have ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: On being nice to Premier Wynne.

It could be hard to get used to doing this. The problem basically is that as a liberal all my life, it is very difficult to accept Kathleen Wynne as a liberal. She is not a liberal and I do not like the way she has been running Ontario. But…(life is full of ‘Buts’ isn’t ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Alberta’s Right, Hard Right and Extreme Right.

Former right-hand man for Stephen Harper, Jason Kenney has his “do or die” vote on July 22. It’s his chance to “unite the right” in Alberta. Conservative Party and Wildrose Party members will vote whether or not to come together as the United Conservative Party of Alberta. There are a few stumbling blocks along the ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Getting to know Patrick Brown.

Thank goodness for Newton’s third law. It is the law of physics that says for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. It also seems to be a law of politics. It just works differently. It is like those commercials being given intense exposure on Ontario television recently to introduce provincial Conservative leader ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Are these the summer doldrums?

Why do the talking heads of television shut down for the summer? While we know that it is just our hardcore readers who drop by during these months, we are not going to let them down. There is lots to discuss. That takeover by Jason Kenney in Alberta has yet to be resolved. The attempt ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Duking it out over hydrogen power.

Smart politicians stay out of arguments over technology. This was the point we were trying to make in our June 20 comments on the multi-billion-dollar plan to electrify Ontario’s Toronto-area commuter train services. It was never our intent to put down the idea of hydrogen-powered trains. It is very important to realize that the billions ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Inviting President Trump.

In politics, you are not always able to dine with people you like. All to often you have to deal with the position rather than the person. And in the case of someone such as the President of the United States of America, the position outranks the person. And what would you ever expect to ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Spring clean out for Ontario booze.

Have you got it figured out yet? Every few years, the Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO) thinks it will be a good time to clean its warehouses. To facilitate this house cleaning, it tries to clear all its warehouse shelves. It makes it easier to dust them. But you never see the LCBO doing ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Granny Wynne knows best.

The current argument between Ontario’s New Democrats and the Ontario Liberals is like a school yard spat over who did what. It is not only childish but it makes both sides of the argument look foolish. They are arguing over who thought of having a mediocre pharmacare plan first. Neither side has much of which ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: The political position in public protests.

One of the most important classes you attend in the reality school of politics is that of the public protest. You have to learn your lessons fast. You learn how people can organize and lead and maximize the media value. You also learn to find the other guy’s organizer and how to neutralize the person ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Gambling with losers.

You find by being observant that the people in a hurry to get to the cashier at a casino are usually the ones wanting to get more money to gamble. Why a casino would extend credit to people is a question that is hard to answer. The question was partly answered recently when it was ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: The attention span of four-year-olds?

You sometimes wonder about the Ontario Liberal government. The kids in the cabinet are too easily distracted. Just the other day, we were reading about transportation minister Stephen Del Duca bragging to a newspaper reporter about the regional express rail expansion—a $13.5 billion electrification program to quadruple commuter train service in the Greater Toronto Area. ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: The wonder of Wynne’s waffling.

They tell us that Premier Wynne is wondering why she has failed to connect with Ontario voters. She thinks she won the last provincial election as a politician. In truth, she was given a conditional go-ahead because her opponents fell on their faces. She won a chance to prove herself. She failed. Andrea Horwath was ...

Babel-on-the-Bay: Chasing ghosts with Chantal Hébert.

In the pile of books set aside for summer reading was Chantal Hébert and Jean Lapierre’s analysis of The Morning After.  It is supposedly their take on the 1995 Quebec Referendum.  By starting with their book, this might become a long hot summer. The book had come to the pile as a gift. It had ...