Transcript: Show #155 "Dirty Looks" | Mar 14, 1999

The opening sequence rolls.
In animation, the title "Fourth Reading" spins against a red background.
Then, snippets from the current episode play.

Steve says THIS WEEK,
TEACHERS' DIRTY LOOKS.

In an interview, a white-haired man in his fifties says WE'RE GOING TO TARGET OUR
RESOURCES AND OUR PEOPLE
BEHIND THOSE CANDIDATES WHO
HAVE THE BEST OPPORTUNITY
TO DEFEAT AN
INCUMBENT TORY.

Now a man in his late sixties speaks to reporters and says THERE'S ALWAYS A CHIT-CHAT
ABOUT TARGETING RIDINGS,
ET CETERA, ET CETERA,
AND DIRE CONSEQUENCES.

Steve says TEACHERS TRY TO SEND
MIKE HARRIS TO THE CORNER
IN THE NEXT ELECTION.

(music plays)
Steve, Ruth, Richard, and another panelist sit with a guest around a table in the shape of a number 4.

Steve is in his thirties, clean-shaven, with short curly brown hair. He's wearing a blue coat over a gray shirt.

Ruth Grier is in her sixties, with short white hair.

Richard says Mahoney is in his late forties, clean-shaven, with short white hair.
Mac Penney is in his sixties, clean-shaven and balding.

Steve says HI, EVERYBODY.
I'M STEVE PAIKIN,
AND WELCOME TO ANOTHER
EDITION OF 4TH READING.
REMEMBER Mrs. SMITH, YOUR
NICE OLD KINDERGARTEN
TEACHER, OR THAT
MILD-MANNERED Mr. BAKER
WHO TAUGHT YOU
CHEMISTRY IN GRADE TEN?
WELL, THEY'RE COMING TO
AN ELECTION NEAR YOU.
IN ALMOST FOUR YEARS OF
EDUCATION WARS WITH
THE CONSERVATIVE GOVERNMENT,
ONTARIO'S TEACHERS
HAVE GOT MIKE HARRIS' MPPs
CLEARLY IN THEIR CROSSHAIRS.
TEACHERS' UNIONS HAVE
LAUNCHED A RIDING-BY-RIDING
STRATEGIC VOTING CAMPAIGN.
THEY'RE SUPPORTING
ANYONE, THE LIBERAL,
THE NEW DEMOCRAT,
WHICHEVER CANDIDATE
HAS THE BETTER
CHANCE OF DEFEATING
THE LOCAL PC CANDIDATE.
AND THEIR UNION LEADERS
ARE PROMISING THAT HELL
HATH NO FURY LIKE A
TEACHER SCORNED.

A clip plays showing a massive protest at Queen's Park. Hundreds march waving banners and signs.

[raucous band music, whistles]

Steve says IT STARTED WITH A
POLITICAL PROTEST
MORE THAN A YEAR AGO
OVER BILL 160,
THE GOVERNMENT'S EDUCATION
REFORM PACKAGE.

An unseen teacher says SO WE'RE WORKING
WITH YOU, AND GOOD LUCK.

Steve says AND IT CONTINUED
THIS WEEK AS TEACHER'S
RALLIED IN SUPPORT OF
STRIKING SUPPORT WORKERS
IN TORONTO.
TEACHERS AND UNIONS FLEXING
THEIR POLITICAL MUSCLES.
VOWING TO DO EVERYTHING
THEY CAN TO DEFEAT
THE CONSERVATIVE GOVERNMENT
IN THE NEXT ELECTION.

Now a union leader reads a statement as a group of reporters aims microphones at her.
A caption reads "Wambui Gaitho. Elementary Teachers of Toronto."
Wambui is in her thirties. She's wearing a colourful headband and a purple winter jacket.

She says WHAT WE ARE EXPERIENCING
NOW PROVIDES A CLEAR PICTURE
OF WHAT WILL HAPPEN IF
THE HARRIS AGENDA
IS IMPLEMENTED
IN OUR SCHOOLS.

[cheering]

Steve says OPPOSITION
POLITICIANS HAVE BEEN
LOBBYING FOR MORE THAN A
YEAR TO BRING TEACHERS
ONTO THEIR SIDE.
THE UNIONS HAVE DECIDED
NOT TO ENDORSE ONE PARTY.
RATHER, THEY'LL DECIDE
RIDING BY RIDING WHETHER
THE LOCAL LIBERAL
OR NEW DEMOCRAT
HAS THE BETTER CHANCE
OF UNSEATING A TORY.

A teacher speaking into a megaphone says
COME ELECTION
TIME, WE'RE STILL
GOING TO BE HERE, AND HE
AIN'T GOING TO BE THERE.
ALL RIGHT?

[cheering]

Now the white-haired man speaks in an interview.
A caption reads "Marshall Jarvis. Ontario English Catholic Teachers Association."
Marshall is in his fifties and clean-shaven. He's wearing glasses, a gray suit, white shirt, and checkered tie.

He says IF YOU CAN BRING TOGETHER
THE OPPOSITION VOTE
IN THESE VARIOUS RIDINGS,
AND THAT OPPOSITION
HAS GROWN OVER TIME, AND
BECOME MORE POLARIZED,
I THINK IF WE CAN DO THAT,
WE CAN BE SUCCESSFUL.
AND THAT'S THE GOAL OF
WHAT STRATEGIC VOTING
IS ALL ABOUT.

Now the man in his late sixties speaks to reporters.
A caption reads "Dave Johnson. Education Minister."
Johnson is clean-shaven, and has short brown hair. He's wearing a black suit, white shirt, and checkered black tie.

He says WELL, I DON'T KNOW, THERE'S
ALWAYS A CHIT-CHAT ABOUT
TARGETING RIDINGS, ET
CETERA, ET CETERA,
AND ALL DIRE CONSEQUENCES,
BUT GENERALLY,
I THINK THE MORE LIGHT
THAT IS BROUGHT
ON A TOPIC, THE
BETTER OFF IT IS.
BETTER OFF IT IS FOR THIS
GOVERNMENT AT ANY RATE.

Fast clips show teachers at work in their classrooms.

Steve says WILL THE UNION'S
EFFORTS TO TARGET
CANDIDATES SUCH AS
DAVE JOHNSON WORK?
OBVIOUSLY, WE WON'T KNOW
UNTIL ELECTION NIGHT.
THIS MUCH WE DO KNOW:
TEACHERS COUNT FOR 126,000
VOTES IN ONTARIO, AND
CAN INFLUENCE MANY MORE,
IF YOU INCLUDE
SPOUSES AND RELATIVES.
BUT THOSE VOTES ARE
SPREAD OVER 103 RIDINGS,
AND CERTAINLY NOT ALL
TEACHERS WILL DO
WHAT THEIR UNION SUGGESTS.

A man in his late forties speaks in an office.
A caption reads "Greg Inwood. Political Scientist, Ryerson University."
Greg is clean-shaven, with short brown hair. He's wearing a gray suit and shirt.

He says THERE'S ALWAYS A GAP WHEN
AN ORGANIZED INTEREST
SEEKS TO INFLUENCE
SOMETHING LIKE
AN ELECTION CAMPAIGN.
A GAP BETWEEN THE
EXPECTATIONS
OF THE LEADERSHIP OF
THE ORGANIZATION,
AND WHAT THE ACTUAL RANK
AND FILE MEMBERS DO.
YOU CAN'T EASILY PERSUADE
PEOPLE TO VOTE EXACTLY
HOW YOU WANT THEM TO VOTE,
EVEN THOUGH YOU'RE
ALL MEMBERS OF THE
SAME ORGANIZE.

Steve says ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
MINISTER AL PALLADINI
IS ONE OF THE
TARGETED TORIES.

In a clip, Palladini speaks to reporters. He's in his fifties, with receding black hair and a moustache.

He says THERE'S A LOT OF GOOD
TEACHERS THAT ARE HESITANT
TO COME OUT IN
PUBLIC, BUT PRIVATELY,
THEY TELL ME PERSONALLY,
KEEP DOING IT.
SO I THINK THERE'S AN
OPPORTUNITY FOR US
TO MAYBE BRING A FEW
MORE TEACHERS ON SIDE.

Steve says EVEN MARSHALL JARVIS
OF THE CATHOLIC TEACHERS'
ASSOCIATION ADMITS MANY
TEACHERS ARE SMALL C
CONSERVATIVES WHO VOTED
FOR MIKE HARRIS
IN THE LAST ELECTION.
THAT WILL MAKE HIS
UNION'S JOB EVEN TOUGHER.

Marshall says FIRST OFF FOREMOST WE'RE
WORKING WITH OUR
OTHER TEACHER
AFFILIATE COLLEAGUES,
AND THEN BEYOND THAT, WE
HAVE VARIOUS COMMUNITY GROUPS,
OTHER LABOUR
ORGANIZATIONS,
ECUMENICAL GROUPS.
I THINK YOU'VE GOT A VERY
WIDE CROSS-SECTION
OF INDIVIDUALS ACROSS THIS
PROVINCE WHO HAVE CONCERNS
ABOUT WHERE THE HARRIS
GOVERNMENT HAS BEEN,
WHERE IT IS HEADING,
AND WHERE IT MAY GO
AS WELL IN THE FUTURE.

The clips end.

Back in the studio, Steve says
LET'S FIND OUT MORE
ABOUT THE TEACHERS'
LATEST CAMPAIGN AGAINST
MIKE HARRIS' CONSERVATIVES.
WITH US TODAY
IS EARL MANNERS,
THE PRESIDENT OF THE
ONTARIO SECONDARY
SCHOOLTEACHERS'
FEDERATION.

Earl is in his early fifties, with wavy white hair and a stubble. He's wearing a blueish-gray suit, white shirt, and matching flowery tie.

Steve continues EARL, NICE TO
HAVE YOU HERE.
WELCOME BACK.

Earl says NICE TO BE BACK.

Steve says AND OUR
QUEEN'S PARK ANALYSTS,
THERE'S RICHARD MAHONEY,
FROM THE OTTAWA LAW FIRM
FRASER MILNER, A PAST
PRESIDENT OF THE ONTARIO
LIBERALS, RUTH GRIER,
FORMER NDP CABINET MINISTER
IN THE BOB RAE GOVERNMENT,
AND THIS WEEK,
JEFFREY LYONS.
JEFF IS A VETERAN TORY,
THREE DECADES IN THE PARTY,
PARTNER WITH
THE LAW FIRM MORRISON,
BROWN AND SOSNOVITCH.

Jeff is in his late sixties, clean-shaven, with shirt side-parted gray hair. He's wearing a gray suit, lilac shirt, and painted gray tie.

Steve continues WELCOME, EVERYBODY.
THIS IS DIFFERENT,
AND THAT'S WHY
WE WANTED YOU
IN HERE TODAY.
TRADITIONALLY, THE
PARTIES GO TO ALL
THE SPECIAL INTEREST
GROUPS, SO-CALLED,
AND WANT A SINGLE
PARTY ENDORSEMENT.
YOU GUYS HAVE DECIDED NOT
TO DO THAT THIS TIME.
HOW COME?

A caption appears on screen. It reads "Earl Manners. President, OSSTF."

Earl says WELL, WE'VE NEVER BEEN
ALIGNED WITH ANY POLITICAL
PARTY IN THE PAST, SO THIS
IS NOT THAT DIFFERENT.
WHAT WE ARE DOING IN
THIS CASE, THOUGH,
IS WE HAVE LIMITED
RESOURCES.
WE KNOW THE TORY GOVERNMENT
HAS A GREAT DEAL OF MONEY
AND RESOURCES TO THROW
AT THIS CAMPAIGN,
AND SINCE THEY'VE TAKEN OVER
EDUCATION DECISION MAKING,
THE ONLY WAY WE'RE
GOING TO HAVE A SAY
ON THE FUTURE OF EDUCATION
IS TO GET INVOLVED
IN THIS ELECTION.
AND WE WANT TO DO IT
IN A WAY THAT USES
OUR RESOURCES WELL.

Steve says HANG ON, LIMITED RESOURCES?
YOU HAVE 126,000 TEACHERS,
IF YOU INCLUDE SPOUSES,
RELATIVES, THAT'S MAYBE
HALF A MILLION PEOPLE
TO DRAW ON.
MIKE HARRIS SAYS YOU'VE
GOT A 5 TO 10 MILLION dollar
WAR CHEST TO CALL UPON.
THAT DOESN'T
SOUND TOO LIMIT.

Earl says MIKE HARRIS CAN
SAY ALL HE WANTS.
THAT'S NOT THE
CASE FOR OSSTF.
YOU'RE ABSOLUTELY
RIGHT.
WE HAVE A LOT
OF MEMBERS.
THEY'RE ANGRY WITH WHAT
THIS GOVERNMENT
HAS DONE TO EDUCATION,
AND THEY'RE MOTIVATED,
AND THEY'RE GOING TO GET
MOBILIZED AND GET ACTIVE
IN THIS ELECTION AS
CITIZENS OF THIS PROVINCE.
THEY WANT TO HAVE A SAY
OVER THE FUTURE
OF THEIR EDUCATION SYSTEM.
AND THE ONLY WAY THEY CAN
DO THAT IS AT THE BALLOT BOX.

Steve says SO IF THE STRATEGIC
VOTING CAMPAIGN WORKS,
WHAT HAPPENS?

Earl says I DON'T LIKE TO USE THE
WORD STRATEGIC VOTING
BECAUSE AS YOU SAID, OUR
MEMBERS HAVE TO VOTE
IN THE RIDING IN
WHICH THEY LIVE.
WHAT WE'RE TRYING TO DO
IS TAKE OUR RESOURCES
AND PUT THEM INTO CERTAIN
RIDINGS AROUND THE PROVINCE
WHERE WE THINK WE CAN MAKE A
DIFFERENCE TO THE ELECTION.

Steve says OKAY, SO WHAT DOES
THAT MEAN, THOUGH?
DOES THAT MEAN ALL
THE TORIES LOSE?

Earl says NO, I DON'T THINK
THAT'S GOING TO HAPPEN.
BUT I THINK THEY ARE
VULNERABLE IN A NUMBER
OF RIDINGS ACROSS
THE PROVINCE.
AND WHAT WE WANT TO DO
IS SUPPORT CANDIDATES
IN EITHER THE LIBERAL PARTY
OR THE NDP THAT HAVE TAKEN
A STRONG STAND IN
DEFENCE OF EDUCATION,
THAT ARE READY TO GO ALL
THE DISTANCE TO TRY
AND PROTECT OUR PUBLIC
EDUCATION SYSTEM,
AND OUR PUBLIC HEALTHCARE
SYSTEM AGAINST
THE GOVERNMENT THAT
ONLY HAS ONE AGENDA,
AND THAT IS TO
PRIVATIZE BOTH.
OKAY, YOU TALK ABOUT
RIDINGS WHERE
THEY'RE VULNERABLE.

Steve says AND I WANT TO THANK
GRAHAM MURRAY
FROM GP MURRAY
RESEARCH.
GRAHAM IS A FORMER
NDP RESEARCHER.
RUTH, YOU KNOW HIM WELL.
HE HAS PUT TOGETHER QUITE
A COMPREHENSIVE LIST
THAT SHOWS IN 19 RIDINGS,
THE CONSERVATIVES WON
BY LESS THAN 10 PERCENT
OF THE VOTE LAST TIME.
AND HE WOULD SUGGEST THAT
MAKES THEM, THEREFORE,
POTENTIALLY VULNERABLE TO
LOSING THE NEXT TIME OUT.
IF THAT'S RIGHT, WE KNOW
HIS NUMBERS ARE RIGHT,
BUT IF IT'S TRUE THAT
THEY'RE POTENTIALLY
VULNERABLE IN
THOSE RULES, RUTH,
DOES THIS KIND OF STRATEGIC
VOTING CAMPAIGN MAKE SENSE?
CAN IT WORK?

The caption changes to "Ruth Grier. Former NDP Cabinet Minister."

Ruth says WELL, I DON'T KNOW
WHETHER IT CAN WORK.
IT'S NEVER BEEN TRIED
EXPLICITLY IN CANADA.
I THINK THERE ARE ALWAYS
PEOPLE WHO HAVE SAID
I'M NOT GOING TO VOTE LIBERAL
BECAUSE THE NDP ARE LIKELY
TO WIN IN THIS RIDING AND
I DON'T WANT TO VOTE
FOR A PARTY
THAT CAN'T WIN.
AND I THINK A LOT OF THE
INDIVIDUAL PEOPLE
WHO ARE BEING ADVISED ABOUT
STRATEGIC VOTING
WILL MAKE THEIR
OWN DECISIONS.
THERE ARE SOME PEOPLE WHO
NO MATTER HOW MANY TIMES
THEY VOTE FOR A PARTY
THAT DOESN'T WIN,
THAT'S THEIR PARTY AND
THEY'RE GOING TO VOTE FOR IT.
BUT THE NUMBERS I'VE SEEN
ARE AROUND 24 RIDINGS
WHERE THE TORIES ARE
CONSIDERED VULNERABLE.
AND I THINK IT COULD WELL
MAKE THE DIFFERENCE
IN THOSE RIDINGS IF ALL OF
THE PEOPLE WHO THINK ABOUT
VOTING, WHICH IS NOT
EVERYBODY, AND DECIDE,
OKAY, IN THIS RIDING, OUR
BEST CHANCE OF DEFEATING
THE CONSERVATIVE IS
THE NEW DEMOCRAT
OR THE LIBERAL, AND
ENOUGH OF THOSE PEOPLE
SWITCH PARTIES TO
MAKE A DIFFERENCE.

Steve says JEFFREY, AS A TORY, ARE
YOU WORRIED ABOUT THIS?

The caption changes to "Jeffrey Lyons. Ontario P.C. Activist."

Jeff says LISTEN, YOU'RE ALWAYS
CONCERNED WHEN A LARGE
ORGANIZATION SUCH AS THE
TEACHERS GET INVOLVED
IN STRATEGIC PLANNING
SUCH AS THIS.
THEY DO HAVE
VAST RECOURSES.
I MEAN, EARL CAN SAY
WHAT HE WANTS TO SAY, BUT...
I'M NOT SAYING THEY'RE
GETTING MONEY FROM THIS
ORGANIZATION, BUT JUST TO
TELL YOU THE SIZE OF THIS
ORGANIZATION, THEY HAVE
THE TEACHERS' PENSION FUND
WHICH IS THE SECOND
BIGGEST PENSION FUND IN CANADA.

Earl says HOLD ON, WE CAN'T USE
ONE PENNY OF THAT, JEFFREY.

Jeff says JUST TO SHOW YOU THE
DIMENSION, EARL,
THAT'S 35 MILLION DOLLARS
THAT YOU PEOPLE HAVE BEEN
ABLE TO PUT INTO A PENSION
FUND THAT'S GROWING,
AND IT'S DONE VERY WELL.

Ruth says ARE YOU IMPLYING
THAT'S A CAMPAIGN FUND?

Jeff says ALSO, THE TEACHERS' UNION
FLY AROUND IN CORPORATE JETS.
WHY DON'T YOU TELL US ABOUT
THE CORPORATE JET YOU OWN,
AND THE GOOD LIFE THAT
YOU HAVE FOR THESE POOR
TEACHERS THAT PAY INTO
THESE UNION FUNDS.

Ruth says I THINK JEFF HAS JUST
CONFIRMED WHY STRATEGIC
VOTING IS GOING TO BE
SUPPORTED BY A LOT OF TEACHERS.

Jeff says BUT I DON'T KNOW WHY
PEOPLE BUY INTO
THIS UNION LEADERSHIP.
PEOPLE HAVE COME UP TO
ME THAT ARE TEACHERS,
AND SOME OF THEM
VOTED FOR US.
THEY'RE UPSET BY SOME
OF THE THINGS WE DID,
BUT I TELL YOU SOMETHING,
THEY'RE NOT SUPPORTIVE,
NECESSARILY, OF
THE UNION.
THEY THINK SOME GOOD THINGS
HAVE COME OUT OF THIS.
NOW WE'RE GOING TO HEAR
FROM THE LIBERALS.

Richard says THANK
YOU, Mr. LYONS.
AND I WILL SAY THAT I USED
TO WORK FOR JEFF LYONS,
SO I HAD TO BE VERY KIND
TO HIM, AS A YOUNG LAWYER.

Jeff says DON'T HAVE TO BE.

The caption changes to "Richard Mahoney. Ontario Liberal Advisor."

Richard says BUT I'VE GOTTEN
BEYOND THAT,
AND I THINK I'LL TRY
AND GO BEYOND THAT NOW.
I THINK JEFF
ACTUALLY HAS A POINT.
I DON'T THINK THIS IS THE
ONE HE WAS TRYING TO MAKE,
BUT I'LL HELP
HIM ANYWAYS.
YOU CAN'T, I DON'T THINK
EARL WOULD BE HERE TO SAY
THAT EARL MANNERS, OR
ANY OTHER PERSON
AT THE TEACHERS'
FEDERATION COULD DELIVER
THE VOTES OF TEACHERS.
THE ONLY WAY THAT, TO
ANSWER THE QUESTION YOU
PUT TO RUTH, THAT THIS
WOULD EVER POSSIBLY WORK,
IS IF TEACHERS, AND PEOPLE
WHO CARE ABOUT EDUCATION,
ARE OTHERWISE MOTIVATED
TO VOTE AGAINST
THIS GOVERNMENT
FOR OTHER PARTIES.

Steve says AND IN THE PAST, I THINK
IT'S FAIR TO SAY
THEY HAVEN'T BEEN THE
MOST POLITICALLY ACTIVE
OR MOTIVATED
GROUP OUT THERE.
I THINK IT'S FAIR TO SAY.

Richard says YES AND NO.
I THINK IN MANY WAYS PEOPLE
HAVE SAID THE TEACHERS'
FEDERATIONS HAD A LOT TO DO
WITH DAVID PETERSON LOSING
IN 1990 BECAUSE THEY WERE
ANGRY ABOUT SOME ISSUES THEN.
I KNOW BECAUSE MY
WIFE'S A TEACHER,
AND I KNOW A
LOT OF TEACHERS,
A LOT OF TEACHERS I
KNOW VOTED FOR
MIKE HARRIS LAST TIME.
WHICH I THINK IS THE
REAL REASON WHY HARRIS
SHOULD BE CONCERNED.
ESSENTIALLY, THERE'S A
LOT OF TEACHERS OUT THERE
RIGHT NOW, AND PEOPLE WHO
CARE ABOUT EDUCATION,
WHO ARE SCARED TO DEATH
ABOUT WHAT THIS GOVERNMENT
IS DOING TO PUBLIC
EDUCATION AND ARE
MOTIVATED, IF I CAN SAY,
AND ARE MOTIVATED
TO VOTE FOR CANDIDATES
THAT CAN BEAT THE HARRIS
CONSERVATIVES, NOT BECAUSE
EARL OR ANYONE ELSE SAYS
YOU SHOULD, BUT
BECAUSE THEY HAPPEN
TO BELIEVE EARL IS RIGHT.

Jeff says CAN I SAY THIS IN CONTEXT?
LOOK, IF YOU WANT TO BEAT
UP ON THE HARRIS TORIES,
YOU CAN HAVE A GREAT
TIME DOING THIS TODAY,
BUT REMEMBER, THIS
GOVERNMENT DID SOMETHING
THAT NO OTHER GOVERNMENT
DID FOR THE LAST TEN YEARS.
I'M FAULTING EVEN
THE DAVIS GOVERNMENT,
THE MILLER GOVERNMENT,
THE PETERSON GOVERNMENT,
WHICH I THINK WAS THE
WORST GOVERNMENT,
WITH ALL DUE RESPECT,
AND I THINK BOB RAE
CAME IN IN BAD TIMES.
AND I'VE GOT TO TELL YOU,
I WAS THE CHAIRMAN
OF THE TRANSIT COMMISSION.
I CAN TELL YOU NO SUBWAYS
WERE BUILT DURING
THAT PERIOD OF TIME
WHEN THEY HAD MONEY.
THIS IS GOVERNMENTS
THAT WERE INACTION.

Ruth says WHO CANCELLED THE EGLINTON
SUBWAY AND IS ONLY BUILDING
THE SHEPPARD ONE
BECAUSE MEL LASTMAN
HAS SOME DEVELOPERS THAT ARE
GOING TO CONTRIBUTE TO IT.

Steve says OKAY, BACK
TO EDUCATION.

Jeff says BUT I JUST WANT TO TELL
YOU IT WAS INACTION THAT
CREATED ALL THIS
WORK THEY HAD TO DO.
SOME OF THESE THINGS
SHOULD HAVE BEEN RESOLVED.
YOU THINK THE LIBERALS
ARE GOING TO CHANGE IT
WHEN THEY COME IN?

Steve says OKAY, FAIR
ENOUGH - EARL.

Earl says LET ME CORRECT
A FEW THINGS.
FIRST OF ALL, JEFFREY
IS THROWING OUT A
FEW STRAW DOGS HERE.
WE CAN'T USE OUR
PENSION PLAN.
THIS GOVERNMENT SPENT OVER
87 MILLION dollars IN THE LAST
FEW MONTHS ALONE ON
PROPAGANDA ADVERTISING
TO TRY AND SUGGEST THAT WHAT
THEY'VE DONE TO EDUCATION
AND HEALTHCARE ISN'T
WHAT EVERY PERSON
IN THIS SOCIETY UNDERSTANDS.
THEY'VE CUT BACK ON
OUR EDUCATION SYSTEM,
AND THEY'VE CERTAINLY
CLOSED HOSPITALS AND MADE
ACCESS TO EMERGENCY WARDS
A LIFE-OR-DEATH SITUATION.
THIS GOVERNMENT HAS TO
BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE.
AND I DON'T KNOW
WHAT THE ISSUE IS?
ALL WE'RE TRYING TO DO IS
GET OUR MEMBERS INVOLVED
IN THE ELECTORAL PROCESS,
AS GOOD CITIZENS,
TO WORK HARD FOR
CANDIDATES THAT SUPPORT
PUBLIC EDUCATION, THAT
BELIEVE THAT THERE'S
AN ALTERNATIVE TO THE
HARRIS GOVERNMENT,
AND WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT
THAT VOICE IS HEARD OVER
THE MILLIONS AND MILLIONS
AND MILLIONS OF DOLLARS
OF ADVERTISING THAT THEIR
CORPORATE SPONSORS
ARE GOING TO BRING.

Steve says I SUGGESTED EARLIER THAT
TEACHERS OFTEN TALKED
A GOOD GAME, BUT THEY
ACTUALLY WEREN'T
NECESSARILY THE MOST
POLITICALLY ACTIVE FOLKS
OUT THERE FOR
ELECTIONS IN THE PAST.
LET ME GIVE YOU
ANOTHER EXAMPLE.
I PLAY HOCKEY WITH A
LOT OF TEACHERS
EVERY TUESDAY NIGHT.
AND SOME OF THESE
TEACHERS ARE SAYING,
YOU KNOW WHAT, WE'RE
GOING TO GET IN THERE,
WE'RE GOING TO TAKE OVER
THESE TORY NOMINATING
MEETINGS, WE'RE GOING TO
MAKE SURE THE CANDIDATES...
NEVER MIND WE BEAT
THEM ON ELECTION DAY,
IF WE BRING 5,000 TEACHERS
TO A NOMINATION MEETING,
WE CAN KNOCK OFF
SITTING MEMBERS.
WELL, NONE OF
THAT HAPPENED.

Earl says WELL, I THINK MOST OF
OUR MEMBERS DON'T WANT
TO GET INVOLVED WITH
THE CONSERVATIVE PARTY.
THEY FEEL FAR MORE
COMFORTABLE EITHER WORKING
FOR THE LIBERALS
OR THE NDP,
AND OUR MEMBERS HAVE GOT
VERY MUCH INVOLVED AT
THE RIDING ASSOCIATION LEVEL
FOR LIBERAL CANDIDATES,
AND FOR THE NDP.
MANY OF THEM HAVE RUN
THEMSELVES BECAUSE THEY
BELIEVE THAT THEY NEED TO
BRING A NEW PERSPECTIVE
TO THE WHOLE DEBATE ABOUT
THE FUTURE OF EDUCATION.
THE DIFFERENCE ABOUT THIS
ELECTION IS WE'VE RUN OUT
OF POLITICAL PARTIES TO OPPOSE.
OSSTF IS IN THERE TRYING TO
TALK ABOUT ALTERNATIVES.
WE'VE HAD A LOT OF DIALOGUE
WITH BOTH THE LIBERALS
AND THE NDP BECAUSE
THEY WANT TO TALK
ABOUT ALTERNATIVES, TOO.
ALTERNATIVES THAT CARE
ABOUT STUDENTS AND CARE
ABOUT THE HEALTHCARE
OF OUR PROVINCE,
UNLIKE THE TORIES WHO
ARE JUST CUTTING
AND CUTTING AND CUTTING.

Steve says RUTH.

Ruth says WELL, EARL'S OUR GUEST,
AND WE'RE TAKING ABOUT
TEACHERS, BUT I THINK IT'S
ALSO IMPORTANT TO REMEMBER
THERE ARE OTHER GROUPS
THAT ARE DOING THE SAME
AS THE TEACHERS HAVE DONE.
NURSES, CITIZENS FOR LOCAL
DEMOCRACY HERE IN TORONTO,
THAT ARE ALL
LOOKING AT THOSE 24,
25 SEATS WHERE THE
CONSERVATIVES ARE CONSIDERED
VULNERABLE, AND
DETERMINED THAT THOSE
CONSERVATIVES WILL LOSE.
AND SO I THINK FROM
A STRATEGIC POINT,
IF YOU'RE LOOKING AT
WHAT'S GOING TO HAPPEN
IN THE NEXT ELECTION, WHEN
WE START FROM THE POSITION
THAT THERE ARE 24 SEATS
WHERE IT IS LIKELY THAT
ONE OF THE OPPOSITION
PARTIES WILL WIN,
IT JUST CHANGES
THE WHOLE DYNAMIC.

Steve says I'M NOT SURE
WE'RE SAYING THAT.

Ruth says WE HAVE A
THREE-PARTY SYSTEM
IN THIS PROVINCE.
AND ONE OF THE REASONS ALL
THREE PARTIES HAVE BEEN
MAJORITY GOVERNMENTS
AT ONE POINT,
AND I THINK THERE ARE
MANY SEATS WON BY EVERY
PARTY BECAUSE THERE
ARE TWO OPPONENTS.
AND WHEN YOU HAVE TWO OF
THE OPPONENTS VOTERS
ARE CONSIDERING, WE WON'T
AUTOMATICALLY VOTE LIBERAL
BECAUSE MY DADDY
VOTED LIBERAL;
WE'LL VOTE NDP BECAUSE THEY
CAN BEAT THE CONSERVATIVE,
THEN YOU SEE A SWITCH.

Earl says THE MAJORITY OF THE VOTERS
IN THE LAST ELECTION,
AND THE MAJORITY OF VOTERS
IN THE NEXT ELECTION,
ARE NOT GOING TO
SUPPORT THE TORIES.
THAT'S A FACT.

Steve says WE KNOW THAT FOR SURE ABOUT
THE LAST ELECTION.
THE TORIES ONLY GOT 45
PERCENT OF THE VOTE,
SO 55 PERCENT VOTED
AGAINST THEM.
WE DON'T KNOW THAT FOR
SURE IN THE NEXT ELECTION.

Earl says WE DON'T KNOW FOR SURE,
BUT YOU CAN LOOK AT
POLLS TODAY.

Steve says POLLS TODAY HAVE
GOT THE TORIES AT 43.
ALL THEY GOT TO DO IS GET
ANOTHER SEVEN AND THEY'VE
GOT MORE THAN
HALF THE VOTES.

Earl says LET ME ASSURE YOU THAT
THE POLLS HAVE ALWAYS
SUGGESTED THAT THE PARTY
IN POWER WAS GOING
TO WIN THE ELECTION IN THE
LAST NUMBER OF YEARS,
AND IT'S DURING THE WRIT,
DURING THE ELECTION ITSELF
POLLS NEVER
SUGGESTED THE NDP
WAS GOING TO
WIN AGAIN.

Ruth says YOU DIDN'T
SEE ALL OUR POLLS.

[laughter]

Steve says CAN I ASK YOU A REAL
OBVIOUS QUESTION.
YOU ARE A NEW
DEMOCRAT, EARL.
YOU ARE, PERSONALLY,
A NEW DEMOCRAT.
AREN'T YOU A LITTLE BIT
UNCOMFORTABLE TELLING
OR SUGGESTING TO TEACHERS
TO GO OUT THERE
AND VOTE LIBERALS IN
SOME RIDINGS?

Ruth says HE'S NOT
SUGGESTING THAT.
HE'S SUGGESTING TAKE
A CAREFUL LOOK AT
YOUR OWN RIDING AND MAKE
YOUR OWN DECISION.

Steve says BASICALLY WHAT HE'S
SAYING IS IF YOU THINK
THE LIBERAL HAS A BETTER
CHANCE THAN THE NEW DEMOCRAT
TO BEAT THE TORY,
VOTE LIBERAL.

Earl says THIS ORGANIZATION HAS
NEVER TOLD OUR MEMBERS
TO VOTE FOR A
PARTICULAR PARTY.
AND I DON'T INTEND TO
DO IT AS PRESIDENT
OF THIS ORGANIZATION.
MY PERSONAL VOTING
PREFERENCES,
I WILL TAKE THAT
TO THE BALLOT BOX.
BUT WHAT WE'RE ASKING
PEOPLE TO DO IS LOOK AT
THE CANDIDATES, EVALUATE
THEIR PLATFORM ON HEALTHCARE,
ON EDUCATION,
AND SOCIAL POLICY,
AND CHOOSE A CANDIDATE THEY
FEEL THEY CAN ENDORSE THAT
IS GOING TO BEST REPRESENT
AN ALTERNATIVE VIEW
FOR THE RUNNING OF
THIS PROVINCE.

Richard says IN A LOT OF LOCAL
AREAS WITH TEACHERS AND
OTHER ORGANIZATIONS IS
THAT PEOPLE ARE GETTING
TOGETHER AND LOOKING ON A
RIDING-BY-RIDING BASIS,
WHO HAS THE BEST CHANCE
OF BEATING HARRIS.
THERE'S AN ARTICLE THIS
WEEK IN
THE NATIONAL POST
ABOUT THE TEACHERS
IN YORK REGION,
FOR EXAMPLE, HAVING
ENDORSED THE LIBERAL
CANDIDATES - OR ABOUT TO
ENDORSE LIBERAL CANDIDATES
IN YORK REGION, URGING
THEIR PEOPLE TO DO THAT.
THERE'LL BE OTHER
ORGANIZATIONS THAT
ARE GOING TO GO THROUGH
THE SAME PROCESS.
AND IN SOME RIDINGS THEY'LL
PROBABLY ENDORSE NEW DEMOCRATS,
AND IN SOME RIDINGS THEY'LL
PROBABLY ENDORSE LIBERALS.

Ruth says AND I JUST WANT TO
CHALLENGE ONE OF THE
THINGS STEVE SAID.
FINISH YOUR SENTENCE,
THEN I WILL.

Richard says AND I THINK THE MOST
IMPORTANT THING IS THERE'S
LOTS OF TIME BETWEEN
NOW AND ELECTION DAY.
PEOPLE WILL HAVE TO
MAKE THAT DECISION,
AS WE TALKED ABOUT
ON THE SHOW BEFORE.
IF YOU'RE CONCERNED ABOUT
WHAT HARRIS IS DOING
IN EDUCATION, IF YOU'RE
CONCERNED ABOUT WHAT HE'S
DOING IN HEALTHCARE, MAKE
A DECISION IN YOUR RIDING
WHO HAS THE BEST
CHANCE TO BEAT HIM?
BECAUSE I THINK ONE THING
WE DO KNOW ABOUT
THIS CAMPAIGN IS IT WILL
PROBABLY COME DOWN
TO THE LAST WEEK OR
DAYS OF THE CAMPAIGN.

Steve says AND YOU THINK MORE
OFTEN THAN NOT IT'LL BE
A LIBERAL AND NEW
DEMOCRAT, OF COURSE.

Richard says I DO THINK THAT.
BUT MAYBE I'M WRONG.

Ruth says THAT'S WHAT I
WANT TO CHALLENGE.
BECAUSE IN THE 25 SEATS
THAT WERE LOOKED AT,
AND SOME OF THE
ORGANIZATIONS THAT HAVE BEEN
MAKING THESE
RECOMMENDATIONS HAVE SAID
14 OF THEM, THE LIBERALS
MIGHT HAVE A GOOD CHANCE,
IN 11 OF THEM, THE NDP
HAS THE BEST CHANCE.
SO THE ASSUMPTION THAT BY
VOTING STRATEGICALLY
YOU'RE TELLING PEOPLE TO VOTE
LIBERAL IN A THREE-PARTY
SYSTEM, WHEN THE NDP,
WITH - WHAT HAPPENS
WHEN YOU LOOK AT OVERALL
VOTES IN ONTARIO IS,
AND I'M SURE RICHARD
WOULD AGREE WITH ME,
THE LIBERAL VOTES ARE
SPREAD MORE EVENLY
ACROSS THE WHOLE PROVINCE.

Richard says TRUE.

Ruth says WHEREAS NDP VOTES TEND
TO BE CONCENTRATED
IN 59 RIDINGS WHERE WE
HAVE A BASE VOTE,
AND ARE IN CONTENTION.

Steve says 59?

Ruth says 59 WHERE WE
HAVE CONTENTION.

Earl says STRATEGIC VOTING
DIDN'T MEAN VOTING FOR
THE LIBERALS OR DOESN'T MEAN
VOTING FOR THE NDP,
BUT IT IS ON A
RIDING-BY-RIDING BASIS.

Jeff says I JUST WANT TO
MAKE A COMMENT.
I'VE BEEN TRYING TO BE
POLITE SO THEY CAN ALL
GET THEIR VIEW ACROSS.

Steve says DONE A GREAT JOB.

Jeff says ANYWAY, I DON'T KNOW WHY
RUTH GRIER WANTS TO LISTEN
TO EARL MANNERS WHO IS
GOING TO BE OUT SUPPORTING
MOST OF THE LIBERAL
CANDIDATES IN THIS PROVINCE.
AND I'M GOING TO
ASK EARL MANNERS,
WHAT POLICY ARE YOU GOING
TO BE GETTING OUT OF LIBERALS?
THE ONLY THING THEY'VE
SAID IS FLEXIBILITY
FOR SCHOOL BOARDS.
YOU KNOW WHAT THAT IS?
MORE INCREASED PROPERTY
TAXES IF THEY DO ANYTHING.
DOES THE PUBLIC
KNOW THAT?

Earl says LET ME ASSURE YOU WE'VE HAD
FAR MORE INPUT AND CONCERN
FROM THE LIBERAL PARTY
THAN WE HAVE FROM
THE CONSERVATIVE PARTY.
AND WE'VE HAD A LOT OF
CONCERN AND INTEREST
FROM THE NDP.

Jeff says WHAT POLICY
HAVE THEY TOLD YOU
THEY'RE GOING TO DO.
LET'S HEAR THE POLICY.
WE'RE ALL WAITING
TO HEAR THE POLICY.

Ruth says DON'T ASK EARL; ASK...

Richard says WHAT THE POLICY IS.

Earl says DON'T ASK ME A
QUESTION AND NOT ALLOW
ME TO ANSWER
EITHER, OKAY.

Jeff says I'M WAITING
FOR YOUR ANSWER.
DON'T GIVE ME THE
DOUBLE TALK HERE.

Steve says WHAT HAS MCGUINTY
TOLD YOU THEY'LL DO?

Earl says BOTH THE LIBERALS AND THE
NDP HAVE COMMITTED
THAT THEY BELIEVE IN
PUBLIC EDUCATION.
THAT'S NOT SOMETHING
THE CONSERVATIVES
HAVE COMMITTED TO.
THEY BOTH BELIEVE BILL 160
IS BAD FOR THE FUTURE
OF EDUCATION, AND THE FUNDING
FORMULA THAT GOES WITH IT
IS NOT GOOD FOR EDUCATION,
AND THEY WILL CHANGE IT.
THE CONSERVATIVES HAVE
NOT MADE THAT COMMITMENT.

Richard says THEY'VE BOTH
COMMITTED - I HATE TO
ADVERTISE THE NDP, BUT BOTH
THE NDP AND THE LIBERALS
HAVE COMMITTED TO
RESTORING JUNIOR KINDERGARTEN
ACROSS THE PROVINCE AS PART OF
THE EDUCATION SYSTEM.

Steve says GO AHEAD.

Ruth says THE FUNDING FORMULA WHICH
IS CAUSING THE TURMOIL
IN TORONTO THESE DAYS,
AND WOULD BE ADJUSTED.

Richard says AND OTTAWA.

Ruth says AND OTTAWA.

Earl says BOTH THE LIBERALS AND NDP
RECOGNIZE IT TAKES
AN EDUCATIONAL TEAM TO
MAKE A SCHOOL OPERATE.
AND IT'S NOT JUST TEACHERS
IN THE CLASSROOM,
BUT IT'S THE CUSTODIANS,
THE OFFICE STAFF,
THE EDUCATION ASSISTANTS,
AND WE HAVE TO FUND SCHOOLS
BASED ON
THAT NEW REALITY,
THAT IT'S AN
EDUCATIONAL TEAM.

Richard says WE HAVE 17 SCHOOLS
IN OTTAWA CARLETON THAT
ARE SLATED TO CLOSE NEXT
YEAR AS A RESULT
OF THIS FUNDING FORMULA.

Steve says THIS IS PERFECT
FOR THE TORIES.
YOU HAVE JUST DESCRIBED A
SITUATION WHERE
THE TORIES ARE VERY
CLEARLY OVER HERE,
AND THE LIBERALS AND NDP
ARE TOGETHER OVER HERE
ON A LOT OF THINGS.

Richard says I DON'T THINK THERE'S A LOT
OF PARENTS OUT THERE
WHO SUPPORT THE
CLOSING OF SCHOOLS.
SO IF THEY WANT TO RUN
ON THAT, THAT'S OKAY.
I'M WILLING TO DIVIDE
THE VOTE WITH THE NDP.
ALL THOSE WHO ARE IN
FAVOUR OF CLOSING SCHOOLS
IN YOUR NEIGHBOURHOOD, PLEASE
CONSIDER VOTING FOR THE TORIES.

Ruth says OR CLOSING HOSPITALS,
OR STOPPING PROTECTING
THE ENVIRONMENT.
IT'S GOING TO BE A VERY
CLEAR CHOICE IN THIS ELECTION.

Jeff says THE CHOICE IS PAY
A LOT OF TAXES,
BE TAXED TO DEATH AS WE
ARE IN THIS COUNTRY TODAY,
AND PAY MORE INCREASED
PROPERTY TAXES SO
WE CAN HELP THE NDP
AND LIBERALS.
NOW THEY'RE JUST ONE
PERFECT GROUP, AS YOU SAY.

[everyone arguing]

Steve says OKAY, JUST ONE SECOND.
LAST MINUTE FOR THIS
DISCUSSION HERE.

Jeff says SOMEBODY'S TRYING TO SOLVE
IT, AND THESE PEOPLE,
ALL THEY WANT TO
DO IS SPEND MONEY.
WANT SPENDERS, YOU'VE GOT
THESE TWO PEOPLE TO MY RIGHT.
AND I SHOULD BE ON THE
OTHER SIDE OF THE CHAIR.

Ruth says YOU'VE GOT MORE
STRAW MEN THAT YOU'VE
KNOCKED DOWN THAN ANY
OF THE GOVERNMENT.

Steve says IF I WERE
IMPOLITE, I'D SAY,
SPEAKING OF STRAW MEN, I
WANT TO TALK ABOUT THE
AL PALLADINI THING, BUT
I WOULDN'T SAY THAT.
AL PALLADINI SAID IN OUR
BACKGROUND PIECE THAT
HE SUSPECTS THAT THERE ARE
LOTS OF TEACHERS OUT THERE
JUST DYING TO
VOTE FOR HIM,
BUT BECAUSE OF THE WAY
THINGS ARE IN THIS PROVINCE,
TEACHERS CAN'T PUBLICLY
SAY THEY ARE PRO TORY.
DOES HE REALLY BELIEVE
THAT, DO YOU THINK?
DO YOU REALLY
BELIEVE THAT?

Jeff says LOOK, THERE ARE PEOPLE
WHO WERE EXERCISED
WHO VOTED TORY LAST TIME
WITH PROBABLY A DIFFERENT
POINT OF VIEW, BUT THERE
ARE PROBABLY PEOPLE OUT
THERE WHO ARE DISSATISFIED
WITH THE UNION,
THINK SOME OF THE THINGS
THAT HAPPENED ARE RIGHT,
IT'S TIME IT HAPPENED.
LISTEN, SOMEBODY HAD
TO TACKLE THIS ISSUE.
AND YOU'VE GOT TO GIVE
HARRIS CREDIT
FOR THE FACT HE
TACKLED THE ISSUE.

Steve says ACTUALLY, WHAT
I'VE GOT TO DO...

Jeff says I'M NOT SAYING THIS
IS THE PERFECT SOLUTION,
AND I THINK IN TIME THEY
ARE ISSUES THEY HAVE TO...

Steve says I HAVE TO GIVE HIM
THE LAST 20 SECONDS.
GO AHEAD, EARL.

Earl says LET'S REMEMBER THAT WE WENT
TO OUR MEMBERS AND ASKED
THEM TO VOTE ON WHAT THEY
THOUGHT ABOUT BILL 160,
AND IF THEY WERE PREPARED
TO TAKE A STAND AGAINST
WHAT WAS A BAD PIECE
OF LEGISLATION.
AND THE VAST
MAJORITY OF THEM DID.
THE VAST MAJORITY OF OUR
MEMBERS ARE ANGRY WITH
WHAT THIS GOVERNMENT HAS
DONE TO EDUCATION,
AND WHAT THE CUTS HAVE
DONE TO THE WAY THEY
CAN DELIVER AN EDUCATION
TO YOUNG PEOPLE TODAY.
EVERY PARENT KNOWS
WHAT THEY'VE DONE.
EVERY CHILD KNOWS
WHAT THEY'VE DONE.
40,000 KIDS AT SKYDOME
CAN'T BE WRONG.

Steve says THAT'S EARL MANNERS,
PRESIDENT OF THE ONTARIO
SECONDARY SCHOOLTEACHERS'
FEDERATION.
EARL, THANKS FOR
BEING HERE TODAY.
TO BE CONTINUED,
AS THEY SAY.
COMING UP, PREMIER HARRIS
SQUELCHES SPECULATION
THAT WE'RE IN FOR A BALANCED
BUDGET THIS YEAR.
WATCH.

A clip plays in which Mike Harris speaks to a group of reporters.
Harris is in his fifties, clean-shaven, with short side-parted gray hair.

He says WE LAID OUT A FIVE YEAR
PLAN FOR OUR BUDGET.
AND WE SAID WE'RE
CONCERNED ABOUT BALANCING,
BUT WE SAID IT WOULD TAKE
FIVE YEARS BECAUSE
WE'RE ALSO CONCERNED ABOUT
JOBS, WE'RE CONCERNED
ABOUT HEALTHCARE,
WE'RE CONCERNED ABOUT
THE QUALITY OF EDUCATION.
SO EACH PROVINCE, YOU KNOW,
ASSESSES THEIR PRIORITIES.
QUEBEC, I THINK, ACTUALLY
CUT HEALTHCARE FUNDING,
AND WE'VE INCREASED OURS.
WE'RE ALSO CUT TAXES
TO CREATE JOBS,
AND OUR UNEMPLOYMENT
RATE IS SUBSTANTIALLY
LOWER THAN QUEBEC'S.

The clip ends.

Steve says WELL, PREMIER MIKE
HARRIS SAYING,
EVEN THOUGH POSSIBLY THE
BOOKS COULD BE BALANCED
THIS YEAR, IT ISN'T
GOING TO HAPPEN.
JEFFREY, FIRST TO YOU.
IS HE NOT EMBARRASSED
ABOUT THIS?
QUEBEC JUST PRESENTED
A BALANCED BUDGET,
NEWFOUNDLAND, ALBERTA,
EVERYBODY'S BALANCING
AHEAD OF ONTARIO NOW.

Jeff says WELL, HIS COMMITMENT WAS
TO DO IT IN FIVE YEARS.

Steve says I KNOW.

Jeff says BUT THINGS TURNED OUT
BETTER THAN HE THOUGHT.
HE COULD HAVE
DONE IT IN FOUR.
THINGS ARE GETTING
BETTER, BUT THERE
WAS NO COMMITMENT.
THIS IS A GUY WHO LIVES
TO HIS COMMITMENTS.
THIS IS NOT ONE THAT HE HAS
TO BRIDGE THE COMMITMENT.
IT WAS TO THE YEAR
2000, OR 2001.
IT WAS A FIVE YEAR
MANDATE TO DO THAT.
IN HIS OPINION, HE'D
RATHER PUT THE MONEY
INTO HEALTH AND EDUCATION.
OBVIOUSLY, WE JUST HAD
A SEGMENT WHERE WE
WERE DEALING WITH
EDUCATION, AND OBVIOUSLY,
THERE ARE SOME THINGS WE
HAVE TO LOOK AT SERIOUSLY
WITH THE TEACHERS, AND
CERTAINLY HEALTHCARE
NEEDS MORE FUNDING, AND
WE'RE PUTTING MORE MONEY,
AND THANKS TO SOME EXTENT
TO OUR FEDERAL CONFERS.
WE'RE GOING TO HEAR
FROM THE OTHERS WHO
ARE ALL WORKED UP HERE.

Steve says LISTEN, FAR BE IT FROM ME
TO PREJUDGE WHAT YOU ARE
GOING TO SAY, BUT IS HE
PREPARED TO ADD ANOTHER
1 OR 1.5 BILLION dollars TO
THE DEBT OF THE PROVINCE
WHICH HAS INCREASED 25
BILLION SINCE HE TOOK OFFICE?

Jeff says WELL, YOU MIGHT IT'S
A GRAPH THAT GOES UP,
BUT ALSO GOES
DOWN VERY QUICKLY.
YOU KNOW, THERE ARE THINGS
YOU CAN DO - THIS ECONOMY
HAS DONE VERY WELL
WITH THIS GOVERNMENT.
AND THERE'S NO DOUBT
THAT I THINK THE HARRIS
GOVERNMENT HAS BEEN A
SIGNIFICANT PART OF THAT.
THE QUESTION IS IF YOU
DO SOME CUTTING IN THE SENSE
OF TAXES AND THAT,
DOES THAT ACCELERATE
THE ECONOMY TO PUT
MORE MONEY BACK INTO
THE GOVERNMENT COFFERS
THAT REDUCES THE DEFICIT?

Richard says I'M ASTOUNDED.
EVERY OTHER TORY WHO'S BEEN
SITTING IN THAT SEAT
HAS TOLD ME ACTUALLY THE
TAX CUT ACTUALLY HELPS THEM
WITH THEIR BOTTOM LINE
BECAUSE IT ACTUALLY
GENERATES SUCH INCREDIBLE
ECONOMIC ACTIVITY,
OF COURSE, ACCORDING
TO THE TORIES,
THAT IT ACTUALLY HELPS.
I'M ASTOUNDED WE'RE
NOT BALANCING
THE BUDGET IN ONTARIO.
I MEAN, ON THIS SHOW, WHEN
THE TORIES DO SOMETHING SMART,
I'VE BEEN THE FIRST
PERSON TO SAY THIS,
I THINK, IS A BIG
MISTAKE POLITICALLY,
AS WELL AS BEING WRONG
PUBLIC POLICY WISE.
EVERY OTHER JURISDICTION
IS BALANCING THEIR BUDGET,
ALMOST IN NORTH AMERICA.
NEWFOUNDLAND IS
BALANCING ITS BUDGET.
ONTARIO WITH, AS
HARRIS SAYS HIMSELF,
WITH AN INCREDIBLY
HIGHLY GROWING ECONOMY
IS NOT GOING TO BALANCE
ITS BUDGET THIS YEAR.

Steve says NEVER PROMISED TO.
HE'S RIGHT ABOUT THAT.

Richard says IT DOESN'T MATTER IF
THEY NEVER PROMISED TO.
THE FEDS BALANCED THEIR
BUDGET WELL AHEAD OF SCHEDULE.
NEWFOUNDLAND BALANCED ITS
BUDGET AHEAD OF SCHEDULE.
QUEBEC BALANCED ITS
BUDGET AHEAD OF SCHEDULE.
PEOPLE EXPECT THEIR
GOVERNMENTS NOW,
HAVING SPENT YEARS
BUILDING UP OUR DEBT,
HAVING DECREASED OUR
ABILITY TO INVEST
IN SOCIAL PROGRAMS BECAUSE
WE'RE TOO WORRIED
ABOUT THE BANKERS AND BOND
TRADERS TO INVEST HEAVILY
IN SOCIAL PROGRAMS, NOW,
PEOPLE ARE EXPECTING
THAT'S PART OF THE DEAL;
YOU BALANCE YOUR BOOKS.
THESE GUYS AREN'T
EVEN DOING IT.
I THINK IT'S
INCREDIBLE.
IT OPENS THEM UP TO
WHY DID WE GO
THROUGH ALL THIS STUFF?

Ruth says I THINK THAT'S
WONDERFUL OUTRAGE.
LET ME MAKE
THREE POINTS.
FIRST OF ALL, I THINK IT'S
NOT AT ALL CLEAR THAT
IT WOULD HAVE BEEN THAT
EASY FOR THEM TO BALANCE
THE BUDGET THIS YEAR
HAD THEY WANTED TO.
WE REALLY DON'T KNOW THE
TRUE STATE OF THE BOOKS
AND WE WON'T UNTIL THE
GOVERNMENT CHANGES.
SECONDLY, I DON'T THINK
POLITICALLY IT'S IN THEIR
BEST INTEREST TO BALANCE
THE BUDGET THIS YEAR
GOING INTO AN ELECTION.
AND CHARLES CAMPBELL OF
THE NDP GAVE ME A LOVELY
ANALOGY TODAY THAT
THE BRITS SUPPORTED
WINSTON CHURCHILL TO
WIN THE WAR FOR THEM.
BUT ONCE THE WAR WAS WON,
OR THE WAR ON DEFICIT
WAS WON, THEY WANTED LABOUR
BECAUSE THEY WANTED
PUBLIC HEALTHCARE,
GOOD EDUCATION.
SO FOR GOING INTO AN
ELECTION THE PUBLIC
COULD WELL SAY, WELL, MIKE
HARRIS HAS MADE THE TOUGH
CHOICES, DONE IT FOR US,
NOW WE WANT TO EASE UP.
SO YOU THINK THEY
MIGHT SAY HERE WE
NEED HIM BACK TO
FINISH THE JOB.
AND I THINK RICHARD'S
OUTRAGE IS PREDICATED
ON THE FACT THAT FOR
DALTON MCGUINTY,
THAT PROGRAMLESS,
POLICYLESS CAMPAIGN THAT'S
EMERGING, THEY NEED THE
SURPLUS TO FINANCE
THEIR CAMPAIGN.

Richard says WE'RE GOING BACK TO LAST
WEEK'S SHOW WHERE RUTH
AND HOWARD HAMPTON ARE NOT
ACCOUNTING FOR 5 BILLION dollars
OF NEW FEDERAL SPENDING.
IT'S RIDICULOUS.
I DON'T THINK IT HAS
ANYTHING TO DO WITH IT.
I THINK AS A MATTER
OF COMPETENCE,
WE'VE GONE THROUGH SOME
TOUGH TIMES IN ONTARIO.
WE'VE CLOSED HOSPITALS,
WE'RE CLOSING SCHOOLS,
JUST STARTING TO
CLOSE SCHOOLS NOW.
HOW COULD IT BE THAT OUR
BUDGET ISN'T BALANCED?
WHEN WOULD WE BALANCE IT IF
WE DON'T DO IT AFTER ALL THAT?
WHEN DO WE BALANCE IT?

Jeff says FIRST OF ALL, THIS IS A
PARTY THAT'S BEEN LEADING
THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT.
THEY DO TAX CUTS
THEN THEY FOLLOW US.
THIS GOVERNMENT
THAT HE'S DEFENDING,
THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT,
IS NO EXAMPLE AT ALL.

Richard says THAT'S RIGHT.
WE BALANCED THE BOOKS FIRST
BEFORE WE STARTED SPENDING.

Ruth says YOU'VE MADE JUST
AS MANY CUTS AS HARRIS.

Richard says THAT'S NOT TRUE.
WE HAD A FAR
BIGGER PLACE TO GO.

Jeff says YOU HAD A BIGGER POT TO
GIVE BACK TO THE PEOPLE
AND YOU DIDN'T DO
IT UNTIL WE STARTED...

Steve says HANG ON, I'VE
GOT TEN SECONDS HERE.
HANG ON GUYS, I'VE
GOT TEN SECONDS.
IS THIS PART OF YOU
BETTER RE-ELECT US
TO FINISH THE JOB?
IS THAT WHAT'S
GOING ON HERE?

Jeff says I THINK THAT'S PART
OF IT, CERTAINLY.
LISTEN, THIS GOVERNMENT NOW
HAS DONE THEIR CUTTING.
THEY WANT TO LOOK BACK
AND START DOING
SOME POSITIVE THINGS.

Richard says DON'T BE
FOOLED, EVERYBODY.

Steve says OKAY, WE GOTTA GO.

Jeff says CUT THE TAXES AND
IMPROVE THE ECONOMY.

Steve says Richard MAHONEY,
RUTH GRIER...

Richard says DON'T BE FOOLED.

Steve says YOU'RE ON OUR SIDE, RIGHT?
AND JEFFREY LYONS.
THANKS FOR PINCH
HITTING TODAY.
MUCH APPRECIATED.

Jeff says THANK YOU.

Steve says AND THAT'S 4TH
READING FOR THIS WEEK.
I'M STEVE PAIKIN, WE'LL
SEE YOU NEXT WEEKEND.

(music plays)

Music plays and the end credits roll, as Steve and the rest continue the conversation.

Queen's Park Bureau Chief, Susanna Kelley.

Producer, Brett Ballah.

A production of TVOntario. Copyright 1999, The Ontario Educational Communications Authority.

Watch: Show #155 "Dirty Looks"