Ontario Energy protests – 4th of April, 2014

UPDATE:  Videos are being added as they come out – just scroll down!

Today, across Ontario, people took to the streets to protest our Provincial government’s mismanagement of our energy supply, which has resulted in doubling or more of our energy costs…with more cost increases coming soon.

Living in Ottawa, I came to the protest nearest me:  at Bob Chiarelli’s constituency office, on the corned of Carling and Woodrooffe.

And what a protest it was!!!

While I’ve heard radio reports of ‘more than  300 people’, and while the numbers did fluctuate over time, at the height of the protest, my count put the crowd at somewhere between 500 and 600 people and dogs.  (Yes, there were cute doggies in the crowd.)

Right away, I saw some familiar faces – Ruth and Beth (frequent callers to CFRA’s Lowel Green show – a couple of fine ladies who are not afraid to speak their minds), there was Debbie J., and Gordon and Jeremy and many, many other familiar faces. A strong contingent from the Landowners’ Association – and a petition against rising hydro costs by Randy Hillier was circulated.   But, there were also people I’ve never seen at any of the protests I’ve been to – a lot of younger people than usual, despite this being a Friday noon protest.

The weather was icky and the wind was sharp and bitterly cold – which is probably why the size of the crowd fluctuated as people snuck off to their cars to warm up, then came back.

The organizers of the rally – led by Beth Trudeau from the Canadians for Language Fairness – ought to be very proud of the fine job they did!

They had a makeshift platform set up, with a bullhorn – and they had a  large number of excellent speakers.

Lisa MacLeod and I have had our differences, but, I give credit where credit is due:  not only had Lisa done a most excellent job following this issue as the Energy Critic, she also came out and spoke at this rally.  I wish I could have heard better what she was saying, but I only caught snippets of it as at that moment I was on the median of Carling Avenue, and rather far from the podium.  But, Lisa did notice me and waved to me and I waved back, acknowledging the great job she’s been doing following this issue and not letting go.

There were other speakers – politicians, journalists, citizens.  One guy told us how he had just started a family and his energy bills were driving him out of his home and into an apartment.  Another urged people not to vote for any political party, as they do not differ that much from each other:  we need real people in government, not career politicians!

I also got up and spoke a few words of encouragement to support all the people standing up and saying enough is enough, we will not suffer energy poverty!

All in all, it was very exciting, but I underestimated the wind and turned into a bit of an icicle…

Still, I think this protest was not the end – rather, just the beginning of the wave of unrest as people refuse to be reduced to energy serfdom.

UPDATE:

Here are some videos from today:

Shirley:

 

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15 Responses to “Ontario Energy protests – 4th of April, 2014”

  1. Voice of Reason Says:

    “which has resulted in doubling or more of our energy costs”

    False. My electricity price went up 3% this year and less than 3% last year. So just above inflation.

    With our smart meter we can keep our total costs down because we do not run our dryer or use our oven until off-peak times. If your bill doubles… its your own damn fault.

    • xanthippa Says:

      LOL

      • Voice of Reason Says:

        I am telling you the facts. Take a look at your own bill if you buy electricity.

        Mine is only going up a little above inflation. Every year I get a notice as to the price increase …. and I read it. This years increase was a little above 3%.

  2. Kim McConnell Says:

    Thank you, this is a very comprehensive report!!

  3. CodeSlinger Says:

    Voice of Reason (sic):

    “we do not run our dryer or use our oven until off-peak times”

    Let me guess – you don’t mind at all that the public electric utility (i.e. the government) micromanages your life in such cavalier manner…

    The craven slavishness of such an attitude is beyond comprehension!

    What next? We do not heat or light our home except during off-peak times? The rest of the time we sit here in the dark and freeze?

    The right time to use your dryer is when you have time for laundry.

    The right time to use your oven is when you are hungry.

    The right time to heat your home is when you are cold.

    A government that applies economic pressure to private individuals to change what time of day they perform such basic, essential functions goes so far beyond any legitimate mandate that it constitutes outright betrayal of the people.

    If there isn’t enough generating capacity, the correct solution is to build more power plants!

    Thorium reactors are the cheapest, safest, cleanest way to do this. Cheaper, safer, and cleaner than hydro-electric power. Better for the environment, too.

    But nooooo! It’s so much easier to wave a bureaucratic wand and push the problem off onto the backs of the people.

    No wonder the people have had enough!

    This is the epitome of everything that is wrong with the way government operates in this country!

    • Voice of Reason Says:

      “Let me guess – you don’t mind at all that the public electric utility (i.e. the government) micromanages your life in such cavalier manner…”

      No, I certainly do not. I realize that electricity costs more at certain times of the day. Just like many other items costs more when demand rises and supply stays the same.

      There are so many products that are subject to price swings because demand is at peak. Hotel rooms are a perfect example, or tenderloin steaks on a summer weekend, or that latest iPhone, or a ticket to a sold out concert, or a brand new hot video game, or a brand new movie in a theatre on opening weekend or stocks in public companies. Don’t want to pay full price for those items, wait until their is less demand and the price drops.

      Do your laundry in the evening or on weekends. How hard can that be.

      If you do not like it, invest in some solar panels and produce your own electricity.

      • xanthippa Says:

        If we could choose our energy provider in a free and unregulated market, we would not be reduced to energy serfdom or dependence on the government for necessities of life.

      • Voice of Reason Says:

        You can produce your own electricity. You no longer need to buy it.

        Remember when the Harris/Eves government tried to unregulate prices? They spent 10’s of millions of tax dollars setting up the market. In the first day the price doubled. So they had to shut it down and reverse the policy.

        So Xanthippa, it has been tried and it failed miserably. Same thing occurred in California when they tried. Remember Enron was caught manipulating the market and the price of power doubled and tripled??

  4. CodeSlinger Says:

    Voice of Reason (sic):

    Oh, and real inflation is running at 8 to 10 percent.

    The official figure is a bare-faced lie, obtained by excluding food and energy prices.

    The official reason for this is that food and energy prices are “too volatile.”

    By which they mean…

    Food and energy prices are going up too fast to support their lies.

  5. CodeSlinger Says:

    Voice of Reason (sic):

    You write “electricity costs more at certain times of the day” as though this were some kind immutable natural law.

    But of course it isn’t.

    It is an arbitrary decree, which is only enforceable because there is no free market for electricity in this country.

    The law of supply and demand only applies to a free market – not to a monopoly!

    Ensuring that supply is sufficient to meet demand – any time of day! – is precisely what a publicly-funded utility is mandated to do.

    But is not doing. That is the betrayal.

    Instead, it is demanding that taxpayers change their behaviour in ways that range from extremely inconvenient to downright harmful and dangerous.

    You say “only do your laundry on evenings and weekends” – completely ignoring the many people who have to work evenings and weekends.

    Worse, you studiously avoid the part where the state tells taxpayers…

    Only cook your food on evenings and weekends!

    Only heat your homes on evenings and weekends!

    The electric utility is horribly abusing its monopoly position, hoarding profits for itself by not expanding capacity, while socializing the losses by pushing them onto the backs of the very taxpayers who granted its monopoly in the first place.

    The perfidy is glaring and obvious.

    But as usual, progressives are perfectly willing to accept any injustice, so long as it serves to increase the power of the state and undermine the freedom of the individual.

    • xanthippa Says:

      CodeSlinger,

      I suspect it is worse than that. Too bad the videographer did not put up my speech from the protest…as I touched on it there.

      It seems obvious to me that this manipulation is not accidental, it is a feature.

      Not only is it a form of conditioning our friend seems to have succumbed to: do what the State says is GOOD.

      By reducing people into energy poverty, they are taking steps towards implementing Agenda 21 as well as forcing people to spend much more time working to support themselves, which reduces free time they could spend paying attention to what the politicians are doing.

      • CodeSlinger Says:

        Xanthippa:

        Yes.

        That’s exactly the bigger picture this fits into.

        And not by accident.

  6. CodeSlinger Says:

    Voice of Reason (sic):

    If the state spends money to “set up” a market, then it follows that this market is not free.

    The way to create a free market is to do nothing at all.

    Producers and consumers need no help to find each other and fix a price.

    The thing is this: you cannot create a free market just by deregulating a monopoly or oligopoly.

    To have a free market, you need competition.

    And not just between two or three or even a dozen large suppliers.

    To have a free market, you need many, many small suppliers.

    This is a state of affairs which has not existed in any major Western market for a very long time.

  7. xanthippa Says:

    You are correct, but there is more going on in Ontario.

    Rural residents are being targeted by steeply increasing ‘delivery charges’.

    For example, my dairy farmer has to pay close to $400 per month for electricity delivery – before he even consumes a single electron.

    And, running his milking machines or other equipment only during the nighttime is not really feasible.

    The city dwellers (where our current Liberal government’s core constituency is) in Ontario are not seeing as steeply rising electricity prices as other Ontarians. This, of course, is part of the policy of driving rural residents off their land and forcing people into increasingly dense cities. It smells of a certain UN initiative – Agenda 21.

    Ottawa, with our deeply corrupt Ottawa Hydro, is an exception to most other large cities. One senior citizen brought his hydro bills from one year ago and now – it had tripled. His pension is $800 per month – but his hydro bill was over $900.

    • xanthippa Says:

      The following comment is from CodeSlinger – I messed up on approving, so the title bit was lost. My apologies.

      Xanthippa:

      To a progressive, this is a GOOD THING.

      After all, he’s just another “old white man” so it serves him right — gives him a precious opportunity to atone for some of that “white guilt.”

      The more old white men we exterminate, the better for Holy Mother Earth, right Voice of Reason (sic)?


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