28 January 2020

Ontario is in the lead up to a province-wide education strike

Mostly because the Conservative government are greedhead wreckers.  I got a "maybe write a letter to the editor? we have a distribution tool" email, and this is what I wrote:

Dear editor,

As we move into a time of climate collapse, we can be sure today's school children are going to have rougher lives than those of us now adult. We can be sure that if we make it through this, it'll because people who are children now had the knowledge and skills to apply to the problem.

A desire to make education cheap at such a time is beyond incompetence; it's not so much pouring gasoline on the fire as going and finding everything especially precious and valuable and throwing it on the fire.

Ontario should be investing more in education, not less. Of course Ontario should raise taxes to do that if that's what's required; every dam, ditch, drain, culvert, settling pond, pump, lock, sewer, causeway, and canal in the province is presently some mix of in the wrong place and the wrong size and it's only going to get worse. The only way to get low taxes for the next couple centuries is to give up on civilization entirely.

Let's pay for civilization; that means paying for education, for skilled teachers, for small class sizes, for additional educational opportunity, and for the increase of knowledge.

Let's recognize we're all in this together, and that we owe those kids the best education we can give them. Let the government of Ontario stop being blatantly, shamefully incompetent and fund good, broad, effective public education for all.

Graydon Saunders


Moz said...

Savage, cuz, that's really savage.

The bit about waterways seemed like detritus from editing, but.

Graydon said...

+Moz ah, but Toronto -- largest city, provincial capital -- is built on the shore of Lake Ontario, and Lake Ontario has been getting rather full. (What with the climate change driven increase in rain.) To the point where the last two summers, the (expensive!) Toronto Harbour Islands (which are basically sand bars with trees and grass on them) have been a little bit under the water for months at a time. And when a significant bunch of thunderstorms come through, parts of Toronto cannot drain; the ratio of drain to paved area is just not enough. Combine this with the lake the drains are supposed to drain into being not-designed-for high and you get SUV-submerging hydraulic damming on portions of the roads and memorable events like a commuter train being evacuated by inflatable boat. (many inflatable boats!) And it keeps happening; what was supposed to be a freak event is turning into "yep, July".

Drainage is something the current government would really, really like to keep from becoming a political issue, because even if you abandon private homeowners to their fate and seek to do no more than keep the roads and rails working, it's going to cost an enormous amount of money. And it's everywhere, and it's everything. (There was an eighteen month gap in the contiguous nature of a major Toronto street, the second most northerly one, something like eighteen kilometres from the lake, because a causeway blew out after a thunderstorm in 2006. The culverts were still there, firmly anchored to their concrete base, but a couple hundred metres of causeway went downstream in the floodwater. Or Peterborough around that same time; water fountaining out of people's basement windows on the downhill side.)

Since it's the sort of government that pays kill fees to get rid of existing green energy projects, well. They're not equipped to deal with the issue. And the gods of civil engineering are still Drainage, Drainage, and Drainage.

Moz said...

I just meant that in a letter about education one sentence about waterways was unrelated to the rest of the letter. It looked as though you'd cut a paragraph and left in one sentence about water by accident.

OTOH it might give the letters editor a warm glow to cut that out and leave a shorter, more coherent, letter. If they still have someone who does that, of course.