Oh boy oh boy what to do with this windfall? The premier of Ontario, Mr. Pick-You-Up-In-My-Pick-Up in person, is giving us some of our money back so we can vote for him in the June election.
And you know what? It might just work. That’s the problem with populism. It’s usually popular.
This is the man who got elected promising us Buck-a-Beers so frankly, I’m actually impressed he’s chosen to refund our licence plate stickers. That’s, like, real sophisticated.
Effective March 13, the new plan will mean plenty of beer money in your pocket. Provided of course that your address is up to date in the government’s database (hey, isn’t that a requirement anyway?) and that you’ve paid all your tickets (ditto?) like the good voters you are.
Ford said, and I kid you not, “people don’t need any more hurdles in the way of getting back on their feet and back to normal” after the pandemic.
Darn tooting right!
No, wait! Licence plate fees are hurdles?
I’m 51 years old. I’ve owned cars pretty much non-stop since I was 17. That’s... a lot of years. Owning cars and, because I like to avoid legal trouble as much as possible, cars that dutifully displayed a licence plate. With a sticker that I’d dutifully paid for with my own cash no less.
It’s a shock to realize I didn’t have to. And I absolutely need to know to whom I must now address my request for a very large refund, so I can buy lots of potato chips or something.
I mean, tabarnak. I’ve been had by so many successive governments, it’s dizzying. Governments that didn’t mind selling me expensive snacks, too. Like, the hell?
Only once did I get something honest from a politician, in my downtown Montreal riding back in the 2000 federal election. I was promised a free beer if I showed up to vote. Not that it was legal or anything, but hey, it was straightforward and honest. Populistic, even.
At least Doug Ford is going all out, with the promise of a refund -- timed to be fresh in our wallets as we cast our precious, fully paid-for ballot -- for our licence plate stickers since March 2020.
Personally, I’m looking at $240. I’ll bet you’re getting the same. The cost of the vote-buying exercise is estimated to be around the billion-dollar mark. What services get cut or scaled back we haven’t been told yet. Not that we need to know. Clearly it’s not anything that matters. Only Doug Ford's political survival counts.
So cheers, eh.