Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Toronto Sun: let's make Toronto worse

How Rob Ford could improve T.O. | Toronto & GTA | News | Toronto Sun
The Toronto Sun suggests outlawing panhandling, scrapping the bag fee and licensing bicycles are ways to improve Toronto. Let's look at these:

Outlawing Panhandling
There is already a law about over-aggressive panhandling. And making a law against poor people begging in the streets would be much more costly in legal and jail fees, than a) allowing panhanding, and/or b) supporting social services to the extent to support people enough so people no longer need to panhandle. It would also be unconstitutional and would result in lawsuits which would be costly for the city/the province.

Scrapping the bag fee
How is this going to help anything? This fee helps people become more environmentally aware so many more carry bags instead of using plastic bags at the store every time - reducing waste (which reduces the city's expense of shipping out garbage to landfill sites). It also helps people become more aware of other environmental and waste issues.

Licensing bicycles
Not practical or cost effective. Been tried before and proven a waste of funds.
This is just more war-on-cyclists by Mammoliti and Ford Nation.
So, they remove the vehicle registration fee and want to make it up by charging cyclists?

Here is a comment from Sun page:
The "I'm not a racist" defence would be stronger coming from someone who didn't assume all refugees are "third-world welfare cheats," and that Toronto is starting to look like Somalia, which could only be true to someone considering the complexion of our newest residents. By the way, thousands of children are dying every day in Somalia right now due to famine and war, making Somalia (and Afghanistan for that matter) the absolute least likely origin of a fake refugee claimant. I hope the moral character of this posting is clear to anyone with a conscience.

1) Banning panhandling - aggressive panhandling is already illegal. Sitting passively on the street with a sign is constitutionally protected, according to the Supreme Court. The Sun is basically asking the City to invite a costly human rights lawsuit it will certainly lose.

2) Bag fee - "it's the mandatory nature of it," says the CFIB. Until businesses invent a bag that evaporates into water vapor after use, society has every moral right to demand that those creating an environmental cost be the ones who pay that cost. Why do libertarian types always start claiming entitlements and demanding public subsidies when the subject is garbage creation and collection?

3) Licensing bicycles - It's been tried. Repeatedly. Didn't work. Too costly, inefficient and didn't achieve the desired results. Despite the Sun's ironic faith in the City's ability to "streamline" anything, there is no reason to believe new technologies will solve the basic problems. And there are cheaper ways to tell cyclists to go to hell, since this is what this proposal is all about really, isn't it? Also, listening to anything Georgio Mammoliti says is intellectual and moral suicide.

So: here's a lovely trifecta of divisive anti-social state aggression, morally inconsistent, imposing higher costs in the name of reduced costs. It takes a lot of
empty space for a head to tolerate such cognitive dissonance.
- JohnfromTO

The best way to improve Toronto currently is to shut down Ford Nation. How do we do that? Convince the city councillors in the Mushy Middle to vote against Ford Nation (or they will be voted out of office next election).
See here: How To Stop Ford Nation

More thoughts on the Toronto Sun ideas:
Ford For Toronto blog - It's always sunny in Toronto: three questionable ideas to "improve" our city

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