Some letters from readers you just have to publish… welcome to my world

I was expecting nasty letters from my Clean Break column today but I found this one quite entertaining. Figured I’d post it here to give readers a sense of what the world is up against. Enjoy:


I am wondering which planet you are living on because your article shilling for a carbon tax on Ontarions to deal with the fiscal challenges is out-of-touch with reality and arrogant.

It is obvious that you are another well-paid, fat-cat liberal with a generous expense account because it is so easy for you to push for such a dangerous, asinine, and egregious policy while you are living in your ivory-tower world. There is no doubt in the minds of readers that you and your dangerous articles are generously funded by the Green Lobby (Wind & Solar) industrial-journalism complex. People like you masquerading as reporters and journalists are the proverbial pig-at-the-trough who always want tax dollars wasted on expensive and unproven schemes and technologies.

At a time of the most severe recession in one’s memory, job losses, and financial misery for millions of people, such an approach would be financially disastrous for taxpayers, consumers, and the province. Instead of promoting growth, this insidious new tax will simply flip the province back into a prolonged slump or stalled recovery. Prices of gasoline and all commodities will shoot up if a carbon tax is introduced and this will kill-off all consumer spending and consumer confidence. Such a new carbon tax will increase and prolong employment instead of creating new jobs.

Ontarions currently pay one of the highest taxes in the world for an out-of-touch, fraudulent, kleptocratic, tax-and-spend government which blows away hard-earned taxpayer dollars on welfare bums, labor unions, special interest groups, corporate welfare queens, and anyone who has a loud megaphone in their hand.

It is easy for fat-cat and absurd journalist like you who smokes rare cuban cigars, eats caviar, and drinks the finest French champagne (all on a well-funded expense account with no limits) to sit in your exalted ivory towers dreaming about and advocating for all kinds of new taxes.

I do not ever trust any government and especially this government of Dalton McGuinty (who has a record of lying and broken promises) to impose a new tax and cut income taxes later, as you are suggesting in this article. Government is like a drug addict which wants just more new taxes like another high.

The current government is like a vermin or parasite which works on the backs of taxpayers instead of working for taxpayers.

The legacy of the current Fiberal Premier is tarnished and he will go in history as one of the most incompetent, corrupt, and prevaricating Premier of Ontario.

Taxpayers will openly rebel against this government if any more new taxes are imposed. People are fed and sick of feeding this bloated, corrupt, and arrogant government.

So, in the future, before you write any more reprehenisble articles advocating for new taxes, think about the impact of your asinine articles on the pocketbooks and wallets of ordinary people.

It is because of such stupid articles like this that I have cancelled my subscription to the paper edition of the Toronto Star. I would love to see this Liberal Star newspaper go into oblivion.

Instead of advocating for new taxes to deal with fiscal challenges, I would strongly suggest to you and challenge you to write even one article advocating for lower taxes, smaller government, a reduced bureaucracy, government services outsourced to the private sector, and less waste, spending, and corruption in government. I doubt it if you have even contemplated such an article. 

All the best to you personally but wish you the worse in your career,

Canadian who is disgusted with the kleptocratic governments.

19 thoughts on “Some letters from readers you just have to publish… welcome to my world”

  1. Wow! That is just … Wow?
    Definitely don’t want whatever this person was smoking.
    Paranoid delusions.

  2. I would hardly call this letter nasty, heartfelt perhaps. The fact that you seem oblivious to his/her arguments is quite telling.

    While there is compelling economic logic to pricing carbon via a carbon tax, the fatal flaw in the argument as you present it is speculating about how such as tax might help us with our fiscal situation. In other words, you are proposing another tax to increase the fiscal capacity of government to spend more and expand its influence over our lives. This is also what brought Stépane Dion down as he intended to use a portion of the revenues to fund other items on his wish list.

    I would be wholeheartedly in your camp if what you proposed was truly a tax shift, with other taxes being reduced correspondingly. In the mean time, we could dispense with all the other programs that currently shower money on favoured groups such as green energy developers. With a carbon tax, they would actually have to compete in energy markets. Maybe then we could develop an internationally competitive alternative energy industry that is not dependent on a captive market.

  3. I agree the letter seems to be heartfelt and would suggest that its ferocity is largely to do with how the Liberals are approaching renewable and the other elements of the Green Energy Act, the seat-saver cancellation of natural gas-fired plants that were actually required to shore up local supply issues and the hypocrisy of bringing in the Ontario Clean Energy Benefit while opposing the PST cut on home heating. I whole-heartedly agree with greengrift and his analysis of Tyler’s article. See my comment under Tyler’s article.

    At BC’s approaching $ 30/tonne, combined cycle natural gas would have a $ 18/MWh advantage over coal and so coal would be done, except for then it has higher value due to its flexibility. As for renewables, using generous-to-renewables assumptions, big wind’s implied carbon cost is ~ $ 150/tonne while big solar is over $ 800/tonne; everyone feel free to complete that thought.

  4. A newspaper journalist with an unlimited expense account, smoking cubans, eating caviar, and drinking champagne? That statement classifies the letter as ignorant, not heartfelt. This just sounds like another “victim” that wants increased benefits with lower taxes. A tax shift or even a revenue increase due to higher carbon taxes could solidify long term finances and provide a means to correct negative externalities. If this money is squandered on pet projects and frivolous spending then it is the ignorant who don’t vote and aren’t properly informed that are to blame, not the politicians.

  5. Unfortunately, I think this reader’s response representative of the majority of the population. They are not informed of how deep we are into this climate change hole. Couple this with the fact that many people no longer trust that the Government and politicians have their best interest in mind (see Occupy protests) and there is a serious problem.

    The shift in lifestyle, consumption of resources and energy usage that is required to put humanity back on a sustainable track is staggering. The average person is not aware of this or what is at stake, they only know that they are asked to pay more taxes for what appears to them to be little benefit. If the Government tells them is it necessary to implement policies like cap and trade or carbon taxes they no longer trust or believe that the money will go to that cause.

    I think the bigger problem than the policies is for the decision makers and leaders to regain the trust of the people. With a trusted leader, people will do what is necessary to achieve a common goal. Without that trust, moving forward becomes increasingly difficult.

  6. Favoured groups such as green energy developers? How about favoured groups such as fossil fuel developers? I am almost in complete agreement, if you agree that all developers are treated the same way: no special tax breaks, no subsidies, just a carbon tax. But then here’s the problem: how about the decades of special support that fossil fuels have received, and which gave them an entrenched position and a significant competitive advantage? Do we just ignore this and force renewables, the new kid on the block, to start without the crutches? It’s amazing how some want to start with a clean slate when it comes to renewables, forgetting history in the process and all the handouts that have built multibillion-dollar goliaths.

    But more specific to your point, I agree there needs to be a shift. And that shift does help a government’s fiscal situation, by stimulating economic growth that produces more tax revenues, without having to dip into the regular budget — i.e. it takes pressure off the regular budget. I never argued it was the solution, I argued it may be part of the solution.

    Some people, by the way, don’t have a problem with a government’s “expanded influence over our lives.” Some might argue there isn’t enough government influence to offset the corporate influence over the health of our economy and environment. To not call that letter “nasty” I find remarkable, and for me or anyone else to not agree with the arguments of the letter (I would call it a point more than an argument, because no arguments are made) does not mean we are oblivious to it.

  7. Hopefully this a 3 (or more) Z occurrence. I’m sure publishing a letter like this is very tempting but doing so does seem a little tawdry to me. If you want to label the guy a kook or a yahoo, do that … and move along to matters such as the actual topic at hand and perhaps address questions or points raised by people who aren’t ranting and calling others names.

    Tyler, as for using a carbon tax to shore up a government’s finances, I still argue that this would fly in the face of How to Implement a Carbon Tax 101 and that it is a sure-fire method for painting a huge target on such an initiative. I would encourage you to contact someone such as Don Dewees at the U of T to discuss. He’s an economics prof (and engineer) and a refreshingly straight-shooter.

  8. This is the type of thinking, erroneous though it is, that is unfortunately a product of a society where the common person feels little or no influence on either government or business and CANNOT trust either. Politicians are more responsive to their leaders and party line than their constituents. The original article clearly stated this is a tax shift, where the people benefiting from producing carbon, ie companies and the rich, would take up their fair share of the tax burden and that taxes would be lessened on those being responsible and using less. In other words TAX NEUTRAL not an additional tax burden. The response above clearly demonstrated the FEAR that it would be an added burden and not a tax shift. We need new idea’s such as the carbon tax but until we can trust government to do it right, currently there isn’t a politician federally or provincially I’d trust as far as I could spit upwind in a gale, this fear will prevail.

  9. Bruce, you may be right as far as implementation of a carbon tax goes. You miss the point of my article: have the discussion, put it back on the table, consider all of the above. Implementation should follow serious discussion, one that has not taken place in this province or this country — and, as the column points out, no thanks to Layton. The column says “It could generate tens of billions of dollars annually by 2020 that could go toward lowering income taxes, reducing the deficit, or boosting investment in climate-friendly public infrastructure projects.”

    The key words being “could” and “or” in that sentence. I agree, those out there less trusting of government or determined to have government get their hands out of the cookie jar would prefer the first point — lowering income taxes, making it a revenue-neutral plan. But not all people are of the opinion that we need less government, hence the need for a discussion about it. Problem is, people who jump to conclusions raise so much of a stink that discussion is taken off the table before it can happen.

  10. That said, your point is well taken: the headline pitches the column such that a carbon tax is a (partial) solution to our fiscal problems, which sets a tone that many people would not like.

  11. Tyler you say: Some people, by the way, don’t have a problem with a government’s “expanded influence over our lives.”

    Most of us do have a problem with that Tyler! Sorry for the News Flash.
    You are advocating Socialism. That is what you advocate as a committed Leftie & prayer at the alter of Atkinson.
    Most Canadians believe in Capitalism & less government control over our lives. We work for what we get and we are proud of that.
    Any Carbon Tax must stay in the province of origin. This Carbon Tax must also be outside of the transfer payment system too.
    Without this Carbon Tax clause any such tax will lead to Separation in this country. Give it a try Dippers; put a carbon tax on Western Canada & we will leave your repression behind.

  12. hi Rob,

    Would like to see your data backing the claim “most of us do have a problem” with government’s expanded influence over our lives with respect to environmental protection and climate change. News flash: numerous polls suggest Canadians want the government to get more involved and/or support a carbon tax. Here’s one from earlier this year. A 2008 Harris-Decima survey came to the same conclusion.

    Obviously there are some areas where government should back off, and some areas where government should get more involved. In this situation, I see it as the latter.

    And don’t get all McCarthy-era on me with scary talk of socialism. I am not a lefty, sorry — I’m straight down the centre — but thanks for generalizing and lobbing what is essentially an insult. On the climate issue and environmental protection, however, I don’t believe the market will solve our problems and do see an expanded role for government.

    I agree, most Canadians believe in capitalism, as do I, but believing in capitalism doesn’t make you a gun-toting Libertarian demanding the government stay away from every aspect of our lives. Just as I expect the police to protect my family and property, I expect the government to protect my environment and health and have the resources to do it, and the two are inter-related. More than that, the two are inter-woven with the economy. I’m amazed that people don’t seem to get that.

    When you say, “we work for what we get and are proud of it.” Hmmmm… what is that supposed to mean? I mean, are you saying I don’t work for what I get, or if I do work, that I’m not proud of it? Are you suggesting that the only people who support a carbon tax don’t work and aren’t proud? I just find that comment a little silly.

    Now, you switched gears in your comment — from mild insult to talk of a carbon tax. As you know from our previous exchanges, I agree any carbon tax must stay in the province of origin — most definitely — but based on general rules of play set by the feds.

    You talk as well like you are representative of all of western Canada. I mean, I think the folks in B.C. would consider themselves western Canadian and might have a problem with you saying that. You know, those folks with a carbon tax?

    Hell, there are a bunch in Alberta that might challenge you on that. Half my family is in Alberta, and have been for nearly 40 years. I happen to know not everyone shares your views there.

  13. Tyler,

    Thank you for the response back. We have a difference of opinion. I do respect your opinion very much, your knowledge and intelligence. But! (always a but, eh?)
    Respectfuly, it is ridiculous to claim you are politically in the centre. You are as orange as well….an orange. That’s OK! It’s a free country or it should be. You have every right to believe what you want and vote as you want. As you say”…general rules of play set by the feds”. YUCK, I say!
    You brought up gun toting! Too funny man. I know, I know Gun = Bad. You’re in the “centre” for sure Tyler! Show me any imperical or scientific data to support the useless long-gun registry. Sorry, I digress.
    You try to claim your view, (people have no problem with more government expanded influence over our lives.), is the majority view when I know it is not, especially in Western Canada, Rural Canada & most of Atlantic Canada.
    In the last federal election Alberta voted around 67% for the Conservatives; voted against the Liberal & NDP Party carbon tax grab. What the NDP had planned for Alberta was done right scary. Wholesale robbery was their plan. Thank God they did not win.
    BTW, Central Canada does not control the resources of Alberta or the West. Have that feeling all you want but in reality Central Canada has no say in the matter.
    Also, the BC carbon tax stays in BC, does it not? and BC brought in in? Not the Feds?
    Again I say, try to enforce a carbon tax with the taxes going to the general revenue of Canada & see what 67% of us do in Alberta, except I feel a few Lib voters will join us so it will be more than that I’m sure. Saskatchewan will certainly join us as well, if a new “carbon tax NEP” comes in. Even BC could join if the Feds try to enforce this extra thievery on them.
    Why can’t Central Canada ever try to help the West? It’s all about taking from the West or harming us in some way! Why?
    We could use help with diversifying the economy & much more of a green energy component & green energy TECH would be helpful to that end. Honestly Tyler a guy like you, if you were writing & promoting Green Energy Tech in Cowtown, would be a great help for the economy here! 🙂

  14. The idea behind a carbon tax is not necessarily to further enrich Albertans. It would be perverse if the carbon tax charged on every bit of carbon went back exclusively to Albertans as tax breaks. I’m 99% sure that’s not what would be intended. I can see the ex-Ontario Steve trying to do it as he continues to pander to his base but it would (hopefully) surely bring his downfall.

  15. Rob,

    Why are you making this an east versus west thing? There was no indication in my column or responses that this is about taxing Alberta so the rest of Canada (particularly us bad folks in Ontario) can take your resources and money. There was no mention of Alberta or the oil sands. In fact, part of it was focused on what Ontario should do. This kind of knee-jerk overreaction is what prevents the kind of national dialogue I seek from happening.

    Your comment, “BTW, Central Canada does not control the resources of Alberta or the West. Have that feeling all you want but in reality Central Canada has no say in the matter” — what’s with that? That’s just childish. I mean, where did this come from? Why are you so insecure about this issue? Do all you want with the resources. Keep the riches. My concern is the pollution, and that is something I WANT Alberta to control and that the federal government has the authority to control through regulation, if necessary.

    Shifting discussion as you did, I find it interesting that, based only on my views regarding the environment and climate change, you deem me as “orange.” For the record, I have never voted federal NDP in my life, as much as I agree with them on some things. Everything I suggest could just as easily come from the Green Party, which last time I checked is fiscally Conservative. You remember that the NDP is against a carbon tax, right?

    Bottom line is I think you’ve lost sight of the issue — this is about reducing carbon emissions and pollution, not about intentionally harming Alberta. Stop trying to make it the latter.

  16. Thanks for the discussion Tyler and your point of view.
    I am very serious when I say Cowtown could use you. Tremendous potential here if some of the focus & monies were shifted to Green Energy TECH and away from O & G.

  17. Hi Tyler,

    I’ve got some news for you.

    You say, “Why are you making this an east versus west thing?”

    I am NOT doing that BUT your Central Canadian politicians are doing it.

    See the robbery planned by one NDP candidate (link above). He is planning to take money from the West and give it to Central Canada (basically Quebec). A disgusting proposal that the West will NEVER accept. Never.

    ALL carbon taxes or Cap & Trade monies should stay in the province of origin, not be stolen by a Quebec Socialist.

    You can talk all you want Tyler, this proposal, if brought in, will mean that the West leaves Canada.

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