Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Tim Hudak came calling yesterday

Twenty years, I've lived in Ottawa South.
For much of that time, Dalton McGuinty was my member of the provincial legislature. For too much of that time, he was Premier of the Province of Ontario.
Not once did he stop by my door to talk to me about my concerns.
Yesterday, Scott and I were in the side yard having a cocktail, when Finnigan starting hopping at the fence alerting us to the presence of a visitor.
It was Tim Hudak, the Conservative leader who wants Dalton's old job.
He was campaigning in his Dalton's old riding, the one he unceremoniously dumped to avoid questions about a dubious gas plant deal, among other scandals. Alongside Hudak was Matt Young, the Tory candidate.
They were travelling behind enemy lines, in a safe Liberal riding.
Or is it?
I've voted Liberal all my life, but after meeting Mr. Hudak, I had to ask myself: was my life made better by Dalton McGuinty?
I have to answer: No.
Twenty years ago, I was making a good living. Today, I can't get a job in a grocery store. Working part-time, I make less money now, at 56, than I did when I was a young journalism school graduate.
The rest of my family is also under-employed. Nick, seen here, can't get a job anywhere and for some reason doesn't qualify for any of the government training programs.
Twenty years ago, I owned my own house. Today, I rent.
Nick and his baby live in the basement.
My Hydro bill has tripled.
My water bill has tripled.
Twenty years ago, I had more than a hundred grand in savings.
When things started going south, as a single mother of three children, I had to use those savings to keep food in the house.
Now I have nothing in the bank and struggle from paycheque to paycheque.
Twenty years ago, my husband Scott had a good full time job.
Today, he is selling cars because there are no jobs in his field. If he's lucky, he brings home two thousand dollars a month.
I ask myself, what kind of province did Dalton McGuinty leave for the Baby Skylar?
Full time kindergarten!
No job for her dad. A minimum wage dog washing job for her mom.
Life in my basement as long as we can afford to stay here.
I would have liked to talk to Dalton about my concerns, but Dalton never showed up on my doorstep.
Not once.
I haven't seen his anointed replacement, either, the guy who used to work for Dalton.
I forget his name.
I thanked Mr. Hudak for stopping by, and asked him what he was hearing at the door.
"Dalton," he said.
Food for thought before I choose my MLA come August 1.

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