Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Political Movement Or Hobo Jungle ?

Is the "Occupy Ottawa" camp currently situated in Ottawa's Confederation Park a political movement/demonstration or simply a hobo jungle ?
Citizen Ellie is of the opinion that it's the latter.
While the camp may have begun with the best of purposes, it is more and more evident that it has become nothing more than a haven for people who want to break laws; a haven for the intoxicated and the addicted; a haven for those who want to prey on the weakest in our society.
There have been reports of physical and sexual assaults, thefts and other activities which fall within the purview of the Criminal Code. Sanitary facilities are minimal and there is reason to be concerned about the risk of disease.
Similar camps in Halifax and London, Ontario have been closed down. The squatters in Toronto have been given until midnight tonight to move on. They've been told to remove themselves from Olympic Plaza in Calgary. And similar action is expected in Vancouver. In New York City, where the "Occupy Wall Street" movement started, the camp in Zucotti Park has been closed. Protesters may return during the day but they will not be allowed to set up tents and camp out.
So what's happening in Ottawa ?
You could have knocked Citizen Ellie over with a feather last week. Wonder of wonders ! A response from Mayor Jim within 24 hours of her sending him an e-mail regarding Occupy Ottawa. Clearly there's a new approach being taken at City Hall in regard to communication with taxpayers.
Mayor Jim explained that Confederation Park is National Capital Commission (NCC) property and it would be up to the NCC to ask the Ottawa Police to step in and clear the park. He suggested that Citizen Ellie contact the local MPs who currently occupy government benches. So e-mails went off to John Baird, Gordon O'Connor etc. etc.
The feds passed the buck back to the city. They say the Occupy Ottawa camp is a "demonstration" and because Ottawa Police are responsible when demonstrations occur it's their job to take the appropriate action.
Mayor Jim's position is correct. The "Occupy Ottawa" camp is not a demonstration in any sense of the word. Ottawa Police can't just walk in without being invited. So citizens of Ottawa who are sick and tired of the hobo jungle and its scofflaw denizens will have to wait until some high hiedin at the NCC decides enough is enough.
Ottawa ratepayers can take comfort in the fact that they will not be alone when it comes to picking up the tab for the cleanup and repair which Confederation Park will require once the hobo jungle is gone. The burden will be shared with taxpayers across the country.
Citizen Ellie has a couple of questions about this whole "occupy" movement in Canada, and especially in Ontario. In the past 12 months Ontarians have had three opportunities to go to the polls and cast ballots in elections at the municipal, provincial and federal levels. Voter turnout on all three occasions was dismal. So where were all these protesters on election day ? Too drunk or drugged to make it to the polls ? If the desire for revolution is as strong as those squatting in the parks (and their big labor backers) would have us believe, how come McGuinty in Ontario and Harper at the federal level weren't summarily turfed out of office ? How come Ottawa ratepayers put the boot to the socialists who controlled council ?
And how come these protesters can only talk about cororate greed as if corporate greed is the root of all evil ? Their only solution is to further tax the rich. In Canada the top tax rate is already 29 per cent. Keep jacking it up and the few really rich in this country will move to one of the many tax havens available around the world. Why aren't they talking about entitlements ? Why aren't they talking about waste and government programs which have outlived their usefulness ? Could it be because they're all swilling at the entitlement trough and their big labor backers fear their membership will sharply decline when governments at all levels start implementing much-needed austerity measures ?

New posts soon.