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Government Monopolies threaten Health and Education in Ontario
- M E D I A R E L E A S E -
Poor Dalton McGuinty, caught between a rock and a hard place. Unfortunately, he has only himself and the Liberal Caucus to blame. For the last eight years, they have been spending like drunken sailors with stolen credit cards, racking up an additional $100 Billion in debt for the next generation of taxpayers in Ontario. Now the bills are coming due and the government needs to tighten its belt. The government monopolies in medical services and education account for over half (57%) of the government’s budget, and the majority of it goes to salaries for teachers, doctors and hospital staff. Now McGuinty is threatening to freeze their salaries.
Judging by the latest news reports, neither the teachers nor doctors plan to take this lying down. They will fight McGuinty with all the tools at their disposal. Students and patients are likely to find themselves pawns in this battle. The teachers have promised to be at their posts this September, but they could walk off the job at any time. While doctors can’t go on strike, they can decide that there are better places than Ontario to practice, making our shortage of doctors and specialists even worse.
The fundamental problem is that government has a monopoly on medical services and a virtual monopoly on education. As a result, the government has to decide how much doctors should be paid for a huge variety of services. Similarly for kindergarten, elementary and high school teachers, principals, vice-principals, and superintendants in the government-run schools. “There is no way bureaucrats at Queen’s Park can determine what prices will ensure an adequate supply of these services,” said Jim McIntosh, Treasurer of the Ontario Libertarian Party, “especially when the demand is unlimited.”
The Ontario Libertarian Party believes a competitive market for both education and medical services will produce better results and ultimately reduce costs. “Parents should be able to choose the best school for their children,” said Allen Small, Leader of the Ontario Libertarian Party and a retired teacher. “The province could provide vouchers for students until voters see that competition produces better results,” he explained. The Party would also support measures such as co-payment and private provision for medical services as an interim measure to introduce competition into the health care system. Many other countries with universal access to health care already use these methods to provide sustainable services.
The Ontario Libertarian Party has been a registered political party since 1975. We advocate property rights, limited government, and voluntary interactions within communities between individuals and groups.