Friday, November 09, 2007

Making things up

Imagine that you live in a rented house or apartment. One day, your landlord comes by and says: "I'm thinking about raising your rent by 12.5% next year because I might make some major improvements to the property one day--I don't know when. I know I've consistantly ignoring and cancelling plans for major improvement for 49 years now, and three years ago, I cancelled the most recent plan--even though it was only a minor touch-up compared to what's needed. Today, I have no definate plans for the most paltry improvements, but the point is, one day I might, and I know how much you'd like to see that finally. So I'm raising your rent by 12.5%"

A rational tenant would say: "Sorry, I don't believe you when you say 'you can't start planning something without saving money', because it's obvious you don't care about making improvements. So why not be more honest about it? Just tell me you're raising rents because you don't care about this property, and simply want to milk it."

Let's hope that the Winnipeg transit riders that Sam Katz is trying to dupe, see through his nauseating talk of a phantom rapid transit system, which he is attempting to use as a placebo to raise transit fares, from $2.00, to $2.25. (Story here.)


This kind of deception that Sam Katz is using should not work with free and able-minded people, but amazingly, it is tried fairly often. In an op-ed piece in the Free Press today, Shauna MacKinnon of the left-wing think tank Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, pulls out all the usual, tired growing-gap-between-rich-and-poor sing-song, and concludes with an absurd scare tactic: "A better use of the huge government surpluses would be to invest significantly more in housing for low-income people. It is estimated that the average household will have approximately $200 extra dollars as the result of the tax cuts. Few Canadians will take comfort in receiving this trifling amount knowing that its cost is a greater risk of homelessness for 1.5 million Canadian households, many with children."

While it would be nice to consider a $200 saving spread out over a year a "trifling amount" (maybe I should get a job with a socialist think tank), that is besides the point. Money does not end poverty. All the taxes in the world cannot end homelessness. If it were that easy, why not advocate for a tax increase, so that Canada can finally do away with potholes, violent crime, heart disease, global terrorism, and bad CBC dramas once and for all.

Fortunately, like transit riders who don't believe Mayor Sam "roads are our rapid transit" Katz when he talks of a rapid transit system he is clearly disinterested in; citizens do not believe any government or lobbyist when they say that they can eliminate poverty with higher--or maintained--levels of taxation. Canadians would rather see the money they earn go toward a better life for them and their children--not to give it away in the name of delusional ideas.


The King Building fiasco continues...
"Jim Paterson, acting head of the planning and property development department, said crews are removing pigeon excrement from the inside of the building, adding once that's completed work will begin on stabilizing the floors and walls and a new roof will be installed."

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of pigeon excrement.


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