Month: June 2014

So does this mean conservatism in Ontario is dead?

Short answer is no. But a certain type of conservatism certainly died with this election — namely fiscal conservatism. Unless Premier Wynne decides to back track on her campaign commitments, the idea that the state should live within its means and should balance its budget is now certainly out of fashion in Ontario, and the consequences will be felt almost immediately and will reverberate for years to come.

Andrew Coyne published a terrific piece in the National Post on the Friday after the election in which he concluded precisely that fiscal conservatism had lost. And he challenged the Premier to implement her ruinous budget.

But over the longer term, conservatism — including fiscal conservatism — will return to favour.



What now?

So the Liberals have won a majority and Kathleen Wynne has pledged to reintroduce and pass the budget she introduced in April. What does this mean for Ontarians: a new pension plan and a tax to pay for it; borrowed money for transit, roads, tuition and for hiring more civil servants which means more deficit and debt.

Here’s a good analysis of why austerity may be in Ontario’s future:

But I’m not convinced Wynne will do what is necessary. In fact, I don’t think she believes Ontario is in any trouble whatsoever. The state is all: government can continue to grow and to spend without limits. The state owns everything, including your money and your rights, and grants them back to you as it sees fit.



Ontario votes

Here’s my prediction for tonight’s vote:

PCs will win a strong minority or a weak majority (50 to 57 seats).

I just can’t fathom the Liberals gaining any new seats. They will experience only loses. Potential Liberal losers include: Dickson, Dhillon, Cansfield, Qaadri, Crack, Gerretsen, Milloy, Chan, Mangat, Takhar, Jaczek, Flynn, Fraser, Chiarelli, MacCharles, Leal, Moridi, Wong, and Del Duca. Personally I would like to see Matthews and Pirruza gone as well. And Murray may be vulnerable from the NDP.

NDP will make modest gains.

Ideally we see the Liberals relegated to third-party status.

The first thing a Tory government should do is introduce legislation to restrict spending by third-parties.


So, what is a Wabi?

I get asked this all the time. What exactly is a Wabi bicycle?

Wabi is a small bicycle design firm based in Los Angeles, California, operated by cycling expert Richard Snook. According to Richard:

Wabi bikes are not your everyday fixed or single speed bikes that you find at the local bike shops. My bikes are road racing bikes tweaked for fixed/single speed riding, made for riding long distances quickly and in comfort, and with a responsiveness that you only get from a high end steel frame, which is not easy to find. What sets the Wabi fixed gear bikes apart from the other fixies out there is the use of lighter, higher quality frame tubing, road racing (not track) design, quality frame builds and light, responsive wheels. What sets the Wabi Cycles’ business apart is the customer service.

And he’s right. Check out Richard’s awesome bikes for yourself.

Who made cycling a political activity?

One would assume that cycling is not inherently a political activity but it has been turned into one, especially in Toronto. It’s now common among Torontonians to see cycling as a Lefty political movement, an activity reserved for tree-huggers, NDPers, Glenn DeBaermaker and Adam Vaughan. I shuddered every time I saw Olivia Chow and the late Jack Layton riding their tandem in the Canada Day parade. Is that how others see ME!!!


The city’s left wing has usurped cycling and have turned it into a way to show your left-wing bona fides. Frankly, many conservatives resent it.  But what are we doing about it?

In a 2009 article for the Utne Reader, Jake Mohan asked the question: Do bikes and politics in the American context really have to mix? He proceeded to make the case that it should be shared by all political stripes and dared to suggest that Democrats should in some way share the activity with conservatives, after all it means “more bikes on the road—something all of us on two wheels, regardless of our political idiosyncrasies, can agree is a good thing”.

Now hold on a minute. SInce when is cycling inherently more virtuous than other ways to get around? Just look at this sub-headline in the popular lefty “Commute By Bike” blog:

“Don’t assume they” [i.e. conservatives] are “all hostile to our cause”.

Our cause? Who made it your cause? And why is it a “cause” anyway?

It’s time for conservatives to take cycling back. Let the revolution begin!