In 2017, Ontario’s Liberal government decided to test the waters of Marxism, giving thousands of public dollars to approximately 4,000 people in selected Ontario towns, with every intention of doing this monthly for the next 3 years.
The province of Ontario is currently $349Bn in debt.
In 2018 Ontarians elected the Ontario Progressive Conservative Party to power for the first time in 15 years, and so shunned the Ontario Liberal Party that they are no longer officially recognized as a provincial party. Taxes and government waste were popular topics for discussion during the election.
So it’s not surprising that cancelling the previous government’s more expensive and less beneficial projects would be a priority for a new government looking to slow Ontario’s descent into bankruptcy, and its experiment with a Universal Basic Income was prematurely cut short. This, of course, led to outcry, rage, hand-wringing, and dozens of online petitions shaming the Conservatives for their heartless cruelty and affront to human dignity, from Ontario’s Progressives.
Ending any entitlement program is bad press for a government, especially one that hits so close to the philosophical core of the Left as a Basic Income, so kudos to the OPCP for their fortitude in making a sensible decision.
Even if the outcome of this experiment couldn’t be foreseen by the most myopic of us (Recipients will be happier, work less, and the public will be out millions of dollars), even if it hadn’t been tried and discarded by other countries, Ontario cannot afford to throw its scant and dwindling resources at the passion projects of preening politicians, for the benefit of 4000 people and one dead German philosopher.
Far from being resentful that their good fortune has come to an end, the beneficiaries of this short-lived sham should be grateful to have received thousands of dollars of free funds in the first place, count their blessings, and return to living their lives by the same laws of commerce as the rest of us, richer for the experience.
But if you’re really and truly concerned for the plight of down-on-their-luck Ontarians, consider this radical idea: Rather than handing people money, maybe the government could continue to reign in spending across the board, and by doing so not need to take so much money from people in the first place.