Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Get 'em while they're young

When did kids stop being kids, and become nothing but future workers?

A new study says all children should be *entitled to early education from the age of two.*

Entitled -- all children ARE entitled to early education from the age of two. All parents are ALLOWED to place their children in Montessori nursery schools, daycares that provide more than just diaper changes and snacks . . . the choice exists already . . . so, what then, is the study suggesting?

The study says that children would benefit because their graduation levels, future earnings and health would be better. And lucky mothers would be able to enter the workforce faster, which would benefit the economy. From the Canadian Press article (title link):
The study said more children are involved in early education than ever before.

However, it noted the split between oversight and delivery still requires too many parents to piece together arrangements to cover their work schedules.

"The results are stressful for children and parents alike, but also negate the wonderful payback that comes from delivering early education in a way that simultaneously supports children's learning and their parents' work," it said.

*Simultaneously supports children's learning and their parents' work.*

What about bonding? What about family life? What about just being a kid?

This study is worrying because it's just sinister enough to spark all the enlightened lefties out there who already think the state is a better parent than parents.


Sunday, November 20, 2011

If they can't get it one way . .

The City of Toronto will get it another.

Has anyone else had this happen?

A relative received a NOTICE OF VIOLATION from the City of Toronto Municipal Licensing and Standards based on the Toronto Municipal Code, Chapter 548, Littering & Dumping of refuse.

Here is the response from my relative:

On April 18, 2011 we received a notice from the city saying that *the owner of land failed to clean and clear refuse that has been thrown, placed, dumped or deposited, including, but not limited to; All household waste, trash brush, boxes, furniture and any other item or thing that appears to have been discarded or abandoned.*

The letter said that if we did not comply, we would be charged $94 dollars per hour for the removal of the *waste* ... which, although we have no way of knowing for sure because of the non-specific nature of the letter, all we could assume it meant the tree limbs in our back yard which had been cut down in the fall, but which, because of the weather, had not been cut into smaller segments and taken to the curb. There was also an old freezer in our side yard. On the date of the letter it had been there just over a week and we were simply waiting for garbage day to put it out.

It took my daughter and son-in law about an hour to cut and bundle the branches and take them to the curb. The freezer went to the curb on our regular garbage day. This was all completed within the allotted time-frame of six days.

Then in June, inspector ___________ came to the door. She seemed to have no issues with the state of our home. She left without giving us notice of a fine or fee of any sort.

Now, here it is November, and on the 3rd we received an Inspection Fee Invoice of ...get this ... $94 + HST for a total of $106.22 for an inspection of our property by the city on June 6th.

I am a pensioner who asked a family member to help to rectify a situation that was going to cost me $94 if was not cleared up . . . and now you're charging me $94 + tax for a young woman in shorts and flip-flops to come to my door and have a five minute look around and find nothing wrong because I complied with the city's order.

Frankly, we don't even know for sure that anyone from the city came around in April to see the offending trees limbs in the first place. We believe our backyard neighbours, who put their house on the market in May, called the city to complain in order to ensure the view from their yard would be favourable for a sale --- You are not charging us for having inspected in April and no one from the city came to the door in April, and the *waste* in question was in a high wooden fenced yard behind the house. Because of this, we believe that that the city took the complaint at face value without an inspection. That would mean that if the complaint was an illegitimate nuisance complaint by a spiteful neighbour, we would have been charged for the June 6th compliance inspection anyway.

Either way, being charged in inspection fee in the exact same amount as the city would have charged to clear up the limbs and move the freezer, is excessive, unfair and absurd.

My son in-law telephoned your office on November 6, the day we received this notice. We were told that someone from the city would call us back about this matter the following day. To date, we have not received a call.

I am angry, frustrated and do not believe that this fee is justifiable, especially considering the so-called *inspection* took less time than it's taken to type this email and the inspector found that if there had been an issue, it was resolved. The city was unable to collect a fine, so now they are imposing a fee. This is wrong. How many people have you done this to? How many people have felt compelled to pay the inspection fee without question its validity?

I would appreciate an immediate response as I have waited in vain for two weeks for a reply to my son in-law's call. Your invoice indicates that if I fail to pay this in full by December 2, I will be charged 1.25 percent interest each thirty days and after 90 days, the amount will be transferred to my property tax bill and a further $50 will be added to the bill.

Does this practise by the city seem fair and reasonable? Just wondering.


Negative 3rd party ads didn't buy an election

In today's Toronto Sun, John Snobelen writes:
But the Working Families ads go beyond the normal limits. The nasty (why are teacher unions, of all people, always so nasty?) ads we all endured during this election were not intended to make a point or raise a policy. They were designed to kneecap Hudak. The unions did the heavy lifting for the Liberals during the campaign.
I'll say it one more time. Hudak's campaign managers *kneecapped* Hudak.

Blame unions, 3rd party spending, blame all you want. Hudak deserved to lose that election because he never said what he would do differently or how he would do it. If people are going to vote for *change* they want to see plans, not platitudes. We didn't get that. We got vitriolic ads from the PC campaign, we got promises to keep some of the most contentious, expensive, stupid Liberal programs (all day kindergarten) and not much else.

I'd love to say the union ads pushed Hudak over the edge because I think their form of propoganda is wrong . . . but Hudak crashed and burned all on his own. If the ads had been effective at all, I think we'd have seen a Liberal majority.

So long as conservatives look outside their ranks for people and things to blame for this major disappointment, they will never find a positive way to move forward . . . the best defence is not always a good offence . . . sometimes, it's just having a plan and executing it. The PC Party had a plan, or so they said. They failed to execute. Their fault. Now . . . pick up what's left and move on.