What Doug Ford at the Cottage Means for the Omicron Variant:

So by now it’s widely known that Doug Ford has left Toronto for his cottage:

@kristintattoos

DF:Heading to the cottage, yah. MT:For the next lockdown? DF:Yah.

♬ original sound – kristintattoos
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Omicron is the Shape of Things To Come

Omicron is taking over. And its shaping up to be a far more contagious and serious version of COVID-19 than the ones we’ve dealt with prior. Just ask the head of Ontario’s COVID-19 Science Table.

Which is why the Ford government has decided to review it’s grand re-opening plan that was supposed to mark the new year. You remember? This plan:

CityNews Coverage from October 22, 2021
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Ontario’s Dirty Lil Secret

The federal government is coming back from its recent climate conference. Where once again the Canadian government made bold promises to reduce CO2 emissions and to meet bold targets. Once again a lot of promises were made but no clear plan of attack was set out. A point many critics have made against the federal government.

Naturally, the focus is centred on the Oil Sands in Alberta as the biggest emitter of CO2, and the biggest obstruction for Canada to meet its targets. However, there is another problem that gets little to no coverage. And it’s a lot harder to fix than imposing a carbon price or limiting emissions targets. It’s Ontario. Specifically the 905 region of Ontario. It is one of the most densely populated parts of the country and is designed to essentially be a CO2 powerhouse.

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The Tale of the Two-Dose Summer

Remember back in March how we were in the thick of this pandemic? Vaccines were just beginning to be introduced as the way out of this mess. The thread in the media was that this roll out was destined to be a disaster. All at the hands of the federal government and Prime Minister Trudeau.

It was a theme driven by politicians:

The official Hansard from Nov 25, 2020, where Michelle Rempel CPC Health Critic states the claim that Canada will not be vaccinated until 2030.
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The weekend that changed Ontario

In one weekend rarely as the political landscape shifted so drastically for a government. For weeks, in Ontario, the third wave has rampaged through the population. In an effort to redeem it’s credibility the Ford government announced stricter measures to curb the spread. These included, closing of parks and playgrounds and allowing widespread carding of anyone ‘suspected’ of violating COVID-19 protocols. You could feel the a collective sigh as the majority of us came to realise this government is out of ideas.

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If this isn’t a sign of a shift in the economy, I don’t know what is

The first day of President Joe Biden’s term saw the cancellation of the Keystone pipeline. Immediately here in Canada, Conservative politicians were aghast and eager to point blame. I wrote about this here. Then things got worse for them.

Last week, GM announced a landmark decision that they would shift their entire fleet to electric by 2035. In Europe, Volvo has pledged to produce only electric cars. As well Volkswagen, in an effort to put Dieselgate behind them has put forward their ID line of vehicles to rebrand themselves as environmentally friendly once again. In fact just about every major automobile manufacturer in the world is producing an electric model and putting brand power behind it. All except for Chrysler, but we’ll discuss that another time.

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Long Term Care is Doug Ford’s Walkerton

Remember back to the previous Tory government here in Ontario? They were a scrappy bunch intent on reforming government through privatisation. Why should government do it, when we can just pay someone to do it for us instead? This line of thinking ended up in one of the most tragic cases of government failure in Ontario history. Namely the Walkerton crisis.

In the end, Premier Mike Harris ended up resigning his position rather than face re-election by the public over the apparent failures of his privatisation priorities.

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In this second wave what’s essential?

A list of FAQ’s from the Premier’s office on the Stay at Home Order

So here we are in the midst of another stay at home order from the provincial government. Apparently our numbers warrant this drastic action. So be it.

There are differences from the previous lockdown we had roughly this time last year. The first time we went into lockdown, the government issued a definitive list of what and what was not essential services. What businesses could justify staying open.

If you look above, this time it’s more of a wish washy, if you feel you’re essential then you’re essential attitude. Why this murky grey zone? The provincial conservative government, is returning to a tried and true tropism of conservatism. The rural parts of the province are so different and unique from those effete liberal elites in Toronto.

Only, I can’t for the life of me see what is so uniquely essential for Timmins that isn’t essential for Toronto. Or vice versa. In fact would that be a great litmus test to determine what is truly essential or not? What can you not live without in Toronto and Timmins? Grocery stores, hardware and building supply stores, pharmacies, gas stations etc would clearly make the list. Restaurants would be included in that list as well. Outside of that, what else would be considered essential to live?

Of course, since we are in lockdown all services would be restricted to curbside pick up, or take out. But we’ve all been doing that for so long it’s not anything shocking by now. By not putting definitions in their orders, we’re just leaving everything open to interpretation. And isn’t that how we got into this predicament in the first place?

One has to wonder how long Doug Ford has

As we wind down 2020 and look towards the new year, it’s common to wonder what the future holds for us. Especially after this year. I mean after the disaster that was 2020, it’s nowhere to go but up right? Unless I presume you’re Doug Ford.

This week, his government is being rocked on calls of hypocrisy and elitism stemming from his Finance Minister Rod Philips’ decision to vacation in St. Barts for the Christmas holidays. In the face of a stay at home instructions from his government. I won’t get into all the angles of why this is a disastrous moment for the Ford government. If you want a pretty good analysis of why there is very little room to maneuver here, I suggest you read Scott Reid’s analysis here:

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