Take a look at the brief story about Parry Sound-Muskoka MPP Norm Miller’s stance on proposed legislation that would prevent, among other things, teachers from striking.
The get-tough stance with teachers is a little perplexing, since there is absolutely no indication they’ve considered striking in the first place as wage freezes and sick day restrictions take place. The proposed legislation may be simply grandstanding on McGuinty’s part given his government faces a by-election in the riding of Kitchener-Waterloo that could give his government its sought-after majority. He’ll get support for the freezes and restrictions too, given the economic times we’re living in. Banking sick days for pay or holidays is not something most of us are able to do, so it’s really no surprise McGuinty is gambling on support for his get tough and ‘keep the dollars in the classroom’ arguments.
But really, is it a surprise young people feel alienated from the political system or that our voter turnout is so low?
MP Tony Clement is often criticized for toeing the party line but Norm Miller does it as well, except being in Opposition means we don’t pay as much attention to him. It’s difficult to affect change from the sidelines.
Unless you’re a dynamic and passionate person, everything you say is drowned in the loud cackle of your tiring party rhetoric. That’s what Miller’s stance sounds like, when he speaks in support of pulling the reins on the goodies teachers get. After all, if most of us can’t get those same benefits, why should they?
“We’ve been recommending for a wage freeze across the board for all public sector workers to try to rein in the McGuinty government’s $15-billion deficit,” says Miller in the story. “I think we see it at least being a recognition by the government that they are spending too much money.”
He’s managed to sort of say the government is doing a good job at waging a war on the public sector, while blaming them for having to wage that war. And he’s saying they’re admitting fault by doing so. How do you like them apples?
There’s a witch-hunt on all public sector employees at both levels of government. It’s the quick fix for lazy politicians who lack creativity and the ability to focus. Fiscal restraint is important, but only if done with intelligence, leaving malice and party ideology aside and remembering that action is always followed by reaction. Walkerton comes to mind.