Toronto: So Is This The Plan?

16 posts / 0 new
Last post
lookielou
Toronto: So Is This The Plan?

___

NorthReport

We know Rob Ford says he can reduce taxes and stop the gravy train. What can left of centre candidates do for Toronto would be my preferred question? What can they contribute? What's the grand vision? What's the plan? What are the burning issues of the day? What is going to excite people to get up first of all and vote themselves, and then also volunteer to help with time, energy and money?

lookielou

> What's the grand vision? 

My question exactly. The NDP seems to be really good at figuring out how to sensibly spend the money we've got - but what's the grand vision? Toronto is a great city, not a small household.

lookielou

Ford remains a threat, although with the big money abandoning him, probably a neutralized threat. Stintz has declared, and Tory may do the same. Both are red Tories, which in today's climate might be the best we can hope for.

But where are the charismatic alternatives on the left, or even on the nominal Liberal left?

It seems that what we have is the rather uninspiring hope that the right will split the vote sufficiently that a lacklustre candidate such as Olivia might carry the day. Is that the plan? (Note: if anybody seriously thinks Olivia is a killer candidate, there'd be no need to hope that the right splits their vote in a convenient fashion.)

I'm overly prone to simplistic generalizations, so I went round to my local MPP's office today to see what the real plan might be. It appears to be nothing other than what I'd supposed.

This is not good. Why can the left not feature a good field of credible candidates?

CanadaOrangeCat

Having no further responsibilities of material consequence and a $174,000 salary, I would say the gravy train follows Ford's chauffeured Escalade quite closely. Hmm I wonder what onion rings would be like with gravy.

CanadaOrangeCat

Duplicate. Sorry.

lookielou

> daOrangeCat

Sorry, must be suffering from an irony deficiency. Your comment makes no sense to me whatsoever.

Based on the response to what I thought was a fairly straightforward concern, we (the NDP) are well and truly fucked in Toronto. Olivia is a non-starter, and no-one seems to care. She isn't going to win, no matter which way the vote is split. And why would she bother running when she has a safe MP seat in the bag?

I worked extremely hard for Cherie in the last provincial election, but if the NDP is determined to lose, I may as well revert to type and rejoin the Greens. Deverell was head and shoulders above the the other candidates in Toronto Centre. 

Bye.

 

 

 

felixr

I think Olivia will and can win if she runs. She will be seen as a uniter, tempered in her judgment, and unlikely to embarass the city. I think the left in Toronto has a major challenge in selling its message if it doesn't understand that the extension of services to the non-urban core is an essential part of selling this vision of social democracy. Another thing that is very important is recognition that people don't think there is money to spare and that any sweetheart sounding deal with unions or other sections of the municipal appartus are going to be strongly looked down on by many people and voters who are just struggling to get by. The left in Toronto has to be about being the champion of the little guy again, not just the urban sophistiques. There needs to be austerity just as there has to be expansion of services to those most in need, those most upwardly aspirational. Lastly, the NDP in Toronto loves to yak about the city's need for more infrastructure dollars and it's need to build, build, build, but it is also true that there is a ton of infrastructure in Toronto that just plain doesn't work well. The NDP should focus on improving the function of infrastructure in the urban core and along the major highways, and building only where it doesn't exist (at least to the same extent), which is in the suburbs.

One issue where Olivia Chow could really show that the NDP has changed would be on customer service complaints on the TTC. Take a hard line about quality of service and look for aggresive ways to expand transit services to the suburbs (while tossing in libraries and other amenities) and this is a campaign Chow can win. Make a better functioning core, build a city for the suburbs, talk turkey about what you're going to do for the little guy, and tell city hall that if they want top wages and top benefits, they've got to provide the best service this country is capable of.

felixr

Oh...and then when elected, actually follow through. Otherwise its going to be another bad (and probably much longer) stretch in the opposition benches.

janfromthebruce

remember it is a council and thus the mayor gets one vote like all the other councilors. Thus having the skillset to navigate and yes, perhaps compromise when necessary to get closer to achievement is necessary.

felixr

janfromthebruce wrote:

remember it is a council and thus the mayor gets one vote like all the other councilors. Thus having the skillset to navigate and yes, perhaps compromise when necessary to get closer to achievement is necessary.

Which is something I have faith Olivia could do. She's a cooperator and a uniter.

janfromthebruce

Agree Felixr.

CanadaOrangeCat

I would campaign on:
More diamond lanes all over the city.
Any road which goes into 3 lanes in the city should have one of those lanes dedicated to transit.
This would make the TTC's existing rolling stock run at higher capacities and bring in higher fare revenues.
It would also be faster than driving. A good example is the Hwy 27 Rocket which gets you from Humber College to Kipling Station in under 20 minutes.

Who knows, if we were smarter about road use, maybe we wouldn't need billions for subways to nowhere.

Sky Captain Sky Captain's picture

CanadaOrangeCat wrote:

I would campaign on:
More diamond lanes all over the city.

I don't disagree with that, but it has to work at most of these lanes, not just be implenented because of a 'it worked at Yonge & Dundas and it worked at Yonge & Bloor, so it can work anywhere' deal. It might sound like arrogance coming from Ms. Chow or any of the other candadates as mayor.

Quote:
Any road which goes into 3 lanes in the city should have one of those lanes dedicated to transit.

That's the same as the BRT [Bus Rapid Transit] lanes that are in some parts of Richmond Hill-I'd rather have those lanes be dediacted to LRT (in particular the LRT that was supposed to be built as Transit City) and limit buses, frankly.

Quote:
This would make the TTC's existing rolling stock run at higher capacities and bring in higher fare revenues.

Conjecture; we really don't know about that.

Quote:
Who knows, if we were smarter about road use, maybe we wouldn't need billions for subways to nowhere.

We still need them, but only in areas that are dense enough urbanly to warrant them. We still need the DRL to take pressure off of the Bloor-Danforth and Yonge University Spadina lines, and we need to seriously override, destroy, and terminate with extreme prejudice any idea of a Scarborough subway line before a shovel or pickaxe hits the ground, in favor of LRT's as they were planned by Mayor Miller and the province (the deluded electorate also needs to be told that this was a stupid idea in the first place that would have resulted in yet another stubway being built with the resulting waste of money like the Sheppard Stubway.) I'd also further refer people to this man and his blog about transit in Toronto: Steve Munro

felixr

Toronto Star wrote:
 Chow is planning to register in late February or early March after completing a national book tour promoting her new autobiography.

...snip..

Last Sunday, 29 men and women who will form the core of Chow’s election team met for eight hours to map out the details of her campaign. Chow wasn’t present, but John Laschinger, her campaign manager, headed the daylong session. An organizer said several Liberals and “self-described progressives” attended the meeting, adding that Chow has lined up support from elected provincial and federal Liberals that will be unveiled when she officially launches her campaign.

mark_alfred

Soknacki says he'll reverse the subway decision for Scarborough and revert to LRT, claiming it's better:  7 stops instead of three, reaches more people, and would be cheaper, so no need to for a tax hike to support it.  Makes sense to me.  Thus, so far he's the best candidate, in my opinion.