Doug Ford's fearless fight against the Communist threat on Ontario campuses - 2019-02-15
Because it's 2019. College and university students "were forced into unions and forced to pay for those unions," the premier wrote in a fundraising appeal this week that culminated with this bizarre punch line: "I think we know what kind of crazy Marxist nonsense student unions get up to. So we fixed that. Student union fees are now opt-in."
Tempting as it is to lampoon Ford's flamboyance, there is method to his madness. He goads people by playing the buffoon first, but he gets the last laugh. By deploying his deadly serious powers as premier, Ford whips up his own base — while pandering to everyone's base instincts. His sudden attack on student unions is just the beginning. For the premier's rhetoric applies equally to labour unions — don't be surprised if he one day reprises the U.S.-style right-to-work laws that make membership optional for free-riders. It's not hard to understand the populist appeal of Ford's plan. Everyone grumbles about rising fees and charges — whether it's paying for parking, paying dues to your labour union, or paying taxes. People are understandably suspicious of waste or corruption. It is human nature to minimize your tax load or reduce your expenses — even if that means acting as a freeloader.