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Election Day: Oct. 2, 2003   

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Letters from Sept. 13-14
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I haven't decided for whom I am going to vote in this election, but after Friday, Sept. 12, I sure know who's not getting my vote.

I read in the Toronto Star that Tory uber-spinmeister Paul Rhodes said that only "humourless journalists" don't get the joke about Dalton McGuinty being "an evil reptilian kitten eater from another planet."

Ummm, Paulie, think again. And no I don't buy the one about "our highly refined sense of humour was lost on reporters and editors, who are somehow taking this seriously, which I find peculiar."

Complete unalloyed nonsense!

Naturally, journalists are selectively humourless, but the Tories rely on that as much (or more than) anyone. They know that, or they ought to have been depressingly familiar with the phenomenon. So, why the sudden onset of being "shocked and appalled?"

The Tories can dish it out, but neither can they take it nor can they own up to dishing it.

I don't know if this incredible media relations gaffe will be the tipping point for the Liberal campaign—undermining any and all Conservative spin control gambits—and permitting Dalton to widen his narrow lead down the stretch to Oct. 2.

If it turns out that way, Uncle Ernie has nobody to blame but himself. As usual, Ernie Eves never actually apologizes or takes responsibility for anything that happens under him, around him, etc.

Talk about not being up to the task of being a leader.

Thank you Erin Gladman and the rest of you highly paid pit bulls. You have one less candidate to consider on Oct. 2.

- G.E. Easton


I am continually baffled by all the criticism the Tory party is receiving about their negative ad campaigns about Dalton McGuinty, while there has been no real critique of McGuinty's own ads. Has anyone really paid attention to them?

During McGuinty's ads, he explains that our health-care and education systems desperately need funds, and that he won't raise taxes, but won't lower them either. So, because of this, we're supposed to "choose change." My only question is what change? I don't see any change. He's going to keep things the way they are, according to his own words. So why should I vote for him?

I don't understand why people keep commenting that he's choosing the high road. Personally, I don't see much swaying me to vote for the Liberal party. At least with the Tories, over the last two terms, they have kept their word on any changes they were going to make. I wonder when the Liberals are going to get around to coming up with some changes their party promises to make for Ontario.

- Brian D


Hey, if paying higher taxes means that our health-care and education systems will improve, then bring on the danged referendum. Ernie's not the worst premier, but the iron-fisted rule of Emperor Harris is a hard legacy to live up to. Maybe Ernie should have privatized life too, eh?

- Adam Dottridge


As a Grade 10 student in the Simcoe Muskoka Catholic District School Board, I have suffered through a severe teachers strike in 2002. The teachers were legislated back to work, only after it was made clear we would lose the year otherwise. Every club and team was cancelled for the whole year, even after they were forced back. The strike even affected the after-school help we could get. There wasn't any, not for the whole year.

In this election, though my vote will not be legally counted, I am voting through the Student Vote 2003. Even if the voters choose the unions, the students (future voters) will remember. We have had first-hand experience with teachers' strikes and how they affect our quality of education. We will not forget them quickly. Please keep the future in mind during this election.

- Shannon Ernst
 Bradford


The Tories are a desperate and pathetic lot. Instead of running on their record (Harris-Eves), they are using a U.S. style of attack and "wedge" issue campaign to deflect voters, and further sidetrack Ontarians with references to federal issues.

Voters need to be reminded of the Harris-Eves legacy of the eight year decline in health care and education in the province, downloading of costs to municipalities and to taxpayers through user fees, the degradation of our once-proud electrical energy system, and the scandals concerning Walkerton and meat inspection.

- Carl Raynard


The Conservative campaign, as stated by Karen Gordon of the PCs during the latest "Political Panel" discussion is "about leadership" and "comparing the leadership of Ernie Eves to that of Dalton McGuinty." (Note that the Tories will not attack Howard Hampton as they are hoping the NDP will steal left leaning votes from the Liberals.)

If Gordon is right, all we voters need to think about is who we think can lead better, or, when you get right down to it, who we like better. It's like the type of campaign we used to see for high school student council, which everyone knew was really just a popularity contest. There were no real issues. (Gosh and doesn't Dalton look like somebody who has been stood up for the prom? But Ernie he's our guy. He's smart and everybody likes him and gosh he'd make a swell leader! And anyway who'd want to elect some reptilian geek like Dalton! He's so weird. Like, he's from another planet!)

I digress.

My question to voters who believe the only issue is leadership is this: What kind of a leader surrounds himself with underlings responsible for writing releases that call the opposition leader an "evil reptilian kitten-eater from another planet," then refuses to apologize?

I want an apology, Mr. Eves, as a taxpayer and voter. I expect you, as a prospective responsible leader, to apologize for allowing your party to let this campaign sink to the lowest levels of base politicking. If you will not apologize to Mr. McGuinty, then apologize to us.

- David Quaile
 Rockwood


Even if I did not believe that the Liberals are offering Ontarians what they need to prosper and live well, I would still not want any part of the bitter skulduggery and distasteful campaigning tactics exemplified by Ernie Eves.

Dalton McGuinty appeals to our "better angels" in the way that all the great leaders of the past have, whether it was Winston Churchill in Britain, John F. Kennedy in America, or Pierre Elliot Trudeau in Canada. We need leaders, true leaders, who ask us to rise above our selfish desires for a measly tax break. We need leaders who inspire us to serve the greater good, to build an Ontario that reaches in hope toward a future with room for the dreams of all our citizens—young and old, rich and poor, healthy and sick.

Listening to Dalton McGuinty's audio clip in John McGrath's column was a tonic for a soul burned by lies, half-truths, distortions, and "over the top" name-calling.

Gweneth Minaker,
 Woodstock


The only party with a set of coherent and progressive ideas is the NDP: keeping Hydro a public utility; implementing a public auto insurance plan; restoring cuts to education and cultural funding; raising the minimum wage; developing more non-profit and cooperative housing projects; throwing out the 60-hour work week; changing those draconian anti-strike laws etc. Basically, their platform stands for everything decent, fair and humane for the average working person in Ontario, of which I am one.

Don't vote Liberal just to get rid of a Tory. I don't agree with strategic voting. The Liberals and the Tories are just Tweedledee and Tweedledum. The Liberals continually vote with the Tories anyway.

Ernie Eves (or, as one of the recent letter writers called him, "Ernie Harris") has got to go!

Carol Auld
 Toronto


When the Conservatives resort to childish name-calling, it is clear that they have no good ideas, or the intellect needed to govern this province. That immature story released from Eves' office Friday was the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard in an election campaign.

I have seen three-year-old children acting more mature than this bunch of Conservatives.

- Ed Kotyk
 Thunder Bay


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