Sexy words mask deeper problems
I don’t think the Oct. 25 leaders debate will greatly affect the outcome of the Nov. 7 provincial election. There were no real surprises, and let’s be honest, how many people watched it? However, as someone with more opinions than I know what to do with, I decided to write this rant… err, critique, pointing out what bothered me about our political leaders clashing on primetime television.
I chose to watch the debate in the NDP-sponsored multi-purpose room at the university, which provided me with free pizza. However, as it always does, free pizza came at a cost. It cost me my eardrums. Every time Lingenfelter spoke, especially about the “nickel on the dollar” for potash royalties, I was bombarded with clapping and hooting.
Lingenfelter tried to pull out all stops to make people love and worship him, while Wall just breezed his way through without mentioning anything contentious. However, that did not mean there was nothing important going on.
There was more than enough spin and sidestepping in the debate. Lingenfelter answered a question about school closures with commentary on education assistants. What the fuck, Link? That has nothing to do with school closures. Stay on topic and stay focussed.
The NDP keeps using words I am tired of. Sexy words like “tuition freeze.” A tuition freeze is not a permanent solution to students’ current situations. I don’t even think the government alone is capable of dealing with these problems. The costs of post-secondary education are also in the hands of those who run those institutions. These institutions are becoming more like businesses, and we, the students, are the consumers. The government plays a role in tuition, but increases in tuition are not entirely the fault of the government.
And “rent control”? Well, rent control will help some people, sure, but I’ve been in Regina for over five years and have never seen a drastic increase in rent. Rent control protects me from a potential that I’m not really worried about. Plus, rent control addresses a symptom of a deeper problem; it is not a solution to the housing crisis Regina is facing. Maybe our potential leaders should be talking more about solving the root cause of our problems and less about treating the symptoms. Regina’s 0.7 per cent vacancy rate will not be solved by rent control. The NDP’s platform has tons of other ideas relating to our housing issue. So why didn’t Lingenfelter mention them during the debate? They want to provide funding for housing co-operatives, which is a great step in the right direction, but the only thing ringing in my ears now is “rent control”. “Funding new housing” has a pretty good ring to it too, NDP.
Now, it may seem like I am overly critical of the NDP. Mind you, this is really only because the Sask. Party hasn’t been campaigning on much beyond their handling on the economy in the last four years. The NDP is throwing ideas out there, and that’s a good thing.
They just should have thrown out some more good things in the actual debate.