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Collection of submissions to newspapers

June 4, 2013

Ottawa Sun

Letters to the Editor, May 26, 2011

ARTS FUNDING EXPERIMENT

Re: Punk sellouts?! Now that’s offensive by Warren Kinsella, May 24: Kinsella is just another example of a lightweight twit that just doesn’t get it. Waste isn’t funny. A few thousand here, a couple billion there… what a lark, eh Warren? As someone who pays taxes, sorts my garbage, obeys the law and tries to donate what little I can afford to those that are less fortunate, let me just say that the government wasting my hard-earned money on anything, especially some misguided promotion of ‘art’ is offensive. If we the poor huddled, uncleansed masses were left with something in our pockets after paying taxes to fund the ever hungry Canadian social experiment we might be able to support the arts by actually buying their music or attending shows. And for the record, I am a fan of the Stranglers and the Clash among others.

Stephen Morford

Ottawa

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Letters to the Editor, Mar. 8, 2012

Ottawa Sun

PUNISHING SUCCESS

Re: “Editorial: Sports tax grab insults Ottawa,” Mar. 7: Finally somebody puts this in the proper context. I keep seeing the business entertainment expense write-off criticized as a subsidy. Some financial education is required in Ontario. A subsidy takes money one party earned, filters it through a bloated and inefficient bureaucracy that takes its cut, and gives what remains to another party that did NOT earn it. A subsidy is harmful to the province’s economic well-being by punishing success and rewarding poor performance, taking money out of public circulation and investing it in growth of bureaucracy. A tax reduction such as the business entertainment expense write-off keeps money out of government’s wasteful hands and keeps it circulating through the economy where in every transaction it generates MORE tax to support government programs. So to recap, a tax deduction or reduction is NOT a subsidy, boosts the economy, and can even INCREASE government revenues.

Stephen Morford

Ottawa

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Letters to the Editor, May 27, 2011

Ottawa Sun

THE ART OF THE DEAL

Re David Akin, “Great countries are art smart,” May 25: Most of the great artists of times past have in fact NOT been subsidized. They created great art because it was their passion. Some had wealthy patrons, most did not. In fact, subsidies encourage an influx of less committed and mediocre artists. Oppressive taxation means the average Joe can’t afford to patronize the arts as much as he would like. And the taxes are spent on mediocrity instead of truly excellent artists whose earning potential is decreased by the swamping of the market with inferior works. Great nations do not subsidize inferiority. Great nations inspire, and are inspired by great artists.

Stephen Morford

Ottawa

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Letters to the Editor, March 12, 2009

Toronto Sun

MORE DEBT UNPRODUCTIVE

Lorrie Goldstein once again voices the common sense that seems to have escaped the rest of the media and politicos (“I’ll stick with the ‘scrappage,'” March 11). I am completely befuddled by the position that we need to tax and spend our way out of this economic malaise. The financial and auto sectors got into this mess because of poor oversight, uncompetitive products and extending credit to those who were obvious risks to default. Now that the chickens have come home to roost, the great minds — economists, politicians, columnists (most Sun scribes excepted) — think the way to fix the problem is to prop up the failed financials and industries with taxpayer cash. Didn’t those same policies create the problem? Instead of saddling future generations with even more debt that will produce an economic drain for the foreseeable future, how about biting the short-term bullet and stop spending just so it looks like you are doing something? Reduce taxes so people have money to spend. Correct the failed policies, provide oversight, and stop wasting other people’s money.

Stephen Morford

Ottawa

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Letters to the Editor, April 12, 2009

Toronto Sun

LET FAILING BUSINESSES FAIL

The sky must be about to fall. For a change, instead of notching up my blood pressure, I agree with almost every point in Eric Margolis’ column (“Wall St. ticks off the world,” April 5). The financial industry got into this mess because of poor oversight, greed, ridiculous speculation and extending credit to those who were obvious risks to default. Now we are reaping what they have sown. Yet too often we hear the way to fix the problem is to bribe the financial industry to extend more credit to people who can’t afford it, all with taxpayer cash. Isn’t this the same type of policy that created the problem? Obviously, those trying to legislate us out of this have uncomfortably close ties to the companies in question, making their impartiality questionable at best. The need for intervention of any kind is overstated. Let these monstrous entities die. The well-run companies get to pick over the bones for viable assets — their reward for sound business practices. What is left will be sold at pennies on the dollar, correcting the market and punishing the speculators and those trying to live beyond their means. The direct job losses from the failures of these giant investment houses is only a few thousand people. But instead, the companies and individuals who resisted the temptation to engage in the orgy of greed, shallowness and rampant consumerism are being punished for generations to come to reward those who created the problem.

Stephen Morford

Ottawa

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Letters to the Editor, London Free Press

April 4, 2009

Human Rights Commissions

Re: Levant a hero in fight against unfair HRCs
While I often disagree with the opinions of both Rory Leishman and Ezra Levant, there can be no doubt my freedom to disagree is wound intricately with their freedom to voice the thoughts I disagree with. If their rights are diminished then so are mine. The time is past when Canadians can be shrinking violets at home while fighting for freedom outside our borders. Otherwise the day may soon come when our soldiers come home to a society less free than the ones they were fighting to liberate. Harper and his cronies, and the provincial premiers have ALL been conspicuously silent on the issue of the HRCs. Obviously liberals and conservatives think exactly the same in this regard; the votes of a few wackos are more important than individual rights and fundamental freedoms of all. I think I’ll go buy Ezra’s book today…

Stephen Morford

Ottawa

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Letters to the Editor, London Free Press

August 13, 2009

AID GREW INTO AN INDUSTRY

Thanks for Rory Leishman’s column Author’s views on African aid spur disgraceful criticism (Aug. 8).

My own views tend to be more in line with Dambisa Moyo, while some of my more “enlightened” and left-leaning friends would probably side with Jefrey Sachs.

They often suggest the government (or in this case governments) should be doing more. My retort is the government has no money, it is our money, and how much did you give last year?

The problem, as Moyo points out, is the act of giving isn’t the point anymore. Aid has become a gargantuan industry, with thousands of thieves, big and small, all taking their cut, and the people who need help most getting the crumbs. Crumbs are just enough to make sure they are around to need help tomorrow and keep the upstream leeches in place and well fed.

Stephen Morford

Ottawa

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Opinion Letters, Cornwall Standard-Freeholder

The Problem with Hockey

February 2, 2010

People keep repeating the same nonsense that “hitting is part of the game,” “you need to keep your head up,” “don’t cross centre looking at the puck,” “don’t admire your pass,” and my favourite, “you need to finish your check.”

Each and every one of these is a poor excuse and doesn’t stand scrutiny.

The problem is headhunting and intent to injure.

I also remember the open ice hitting of earlier eras, and it was punishing. But those doing the hitting then planted a shoulder to the chest to stop a guy in his tracks. They didn’t aim a heavily armoured elbow at an eye socket.

Scott Stevens is in the Hall of Fame because he scrambled brains. Without his reputation, he was a borderline Hall of Fame player with a long and successful career. But he is best known for effectively changing the career path of two of the greatest offensive players of his era: Eric Lindros and Paul Kariya.

Neither was the same after Stevens left them brain-injured and helpless on the ice. That he didn’t use an elbow isn’t the issue. He used a heavilyarmoured shoulder to the head to achieve the same affect.

An episode of Legends of Hockey featured Gordie Howe saying his reputation for being tough and mean was well-deserved, but when he went into the corner with a gentleman player, and he specifically mentioned Jean Beliveau, he would warn him– “Look out big Jean, I’m coming.”

How many of today’s big hitters do that?

When a player gets blindsided with a hit to the head after he makes a pass, that should be a penalty. The rules say you can’t hit a guy who isn’t carrying the puck. That is interference. Nothing in the rules say “don’t admire your pass.” If you are admiring your pass, it means you’ve already gotten rid of the puck.

I remember Howie Meeker’s hockey tips, and back then finishing your check meant riding your man off the puck, angling him into the boards so he couldn’t continue into the offensive zone.

Now it means crush the opposing player by whatever means necessary, legal or not– and hopefully end his participation in the game.

It sickens me to see this happen to hockey. And I believe it is one of the main reasons hockey can’t break through to the real major leagues of sport, and trails illustrious sporting events like poker, bowling and darts on television outside its core bases. Only hardcore fans can stomach it.

Stephen Morford

Ottawa

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Comment on National Citizens Coalition column

Justin Trudeau – the saviour of the Liberal Party? April 15, 2013

As a conservative I wish that was true. But the Harper Conservatives.. . whatever they may be… are NOT conservative. The government, civil service and spending are bigger than ever. If we are weathering the financial storm better than others it is due partly to Paul Martin paying down our debt… even if he did it on the ever straining backs of taxpayers… but mostly due to Canadians conservative investing habits.

Stephen Morford

Ottawa

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Letter to the Editor, London Free Press

January 31, 2009

Stimulus Spending

Thanks for the column Rory. I couldn’t agree more on most points (although the “judicial usurpation of legislative power” and “safeguard the lives of babies in the womb” parts probably belong in a different column). I had high hopes that Harper would finally be a real leader of a real conservative party. But the Harper/Flaherty/Baird edition of the Conservative Party abandoned any pretext of principles or commonsense immediately on coming to power. At no point did they even attempt to reduce spending, and in fact increased expenditures over and above Paul Martin levels. They even expanded on the time tested Liberal Party tradition of of trying to be all things to all people while bribing them with their own money. Tax cuts they did offer were trivial and meaningless. The only thing they seemed to do successfully was to appear mean-spirited and petty. And now they have consumed the same koolaid as most other world leaders. This is insanity! Whoever their strategists are need to step down… now!

The worlds’ largest economies got into this mess with lax financial regulation, poor enforcement, frivolous spending, and extending credit to those that obviously could not afford it. Now that the chickens have come home to roost and the errors of their ways are evident, they decide to fix the problem by… rewarding the failed institutions with taxpayer funded buyouts and bribing banks to extend credit to those that can’t afford it. Huh? What am I missing here? Their about face and deficit spending promises even shocked the liberals. Is this not an acceleration of the same programs that got us into this mess? Perhaps if the econony needs stimulation we could try this: drastically reduce government spending while drastically reducing the citizens’ tax load. If people have money in their pockets they will spend it. Offering them tax free saving accounts isn’t going to help anything when nobody has $5000 a year to put aside due to the government taking all their money to fund silly programs… Grrrr!

I’ve been a Conservative my entire voting life, but I can not see me voting for these duds again. They have betrayed everything I believe in, show no political instincts or moral integrity, and display a meanness and lust for power that disgusts me. I’ll hold my nose and vote liberal just to get rid of this bunch. So far it seems that Iggy might be more conservative than these jerks anyway… Robert Stanfield must be rolling in his grave.

Stephen Morford

Ottawa

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Letter to the Editor, Ottawa Sun

February 7, 2009

Conservatives Fake Environmentalism

Re: “This will leave you breathless” (Feb. 6). There was never any doubt that when Stephen Harper’s Conservatives changed overnight from skeptics to enviro-champions that the uncleansed masses would get hosed. They have shown a stunning lack of political insight or instincts, no morals or convictions, and a lust for power that would embarrass any liberal this side of Stephane Dion. In fact, in Weston’s words, by “trying to buy voters with their own bus fare” they have come out of the closet and revealed themselves to be a continuation of previous Liberal regimes. Makes it so much easier for Dionatieff to support them.

At this point, I think Harper/Flaherty/Baird may have moved to the left of the Liberal party and are muscling in on NDP territory. As a supporter of conservative values, I feel betrayed and disgusted. They won’t get my vote again. Good riddance, imposters.

Stephen Morford

Ottawa

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Letters to the Editor, Ottawa Sun

June 3, 2009

Sushi

Re: “Know what they call ‘sushi’?” (May 31). Excellent column by Pat MacAdam. If I had ever written it down, I would have sworn you stole the words from me — I often tell the yuppies amongst my crowd my own spin on “if God wanted us to eat raw meat and fish He would not have given us fire and stoves.” We evolved to master fire so we could cook our food and not get sick from germs and parasites. If you want to be cavemen, be my guests. I’ll stay in the modern age thanks.

But I am also a Caper, born of English parents, have caught my share of fish, and seen the processing line, and I know what lives in raw fish — and I don’t want it living in me.

Stephen Morford

Ottawa

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Letters to the Editor, Toronto Sun

March 28, 2009

FREEDOM TO DISAGREE

Re “Seeking refuge” (March 21): Well said, Michael Coren. I am not a practicing Christian, but I couldn’t agree more on the point of the column. There seems to be some compulsion among certain people to demonize the foundations of western civilization, and of course the Judeo-Christian ethic is one of those foundations. It should be obvious that the freedom we enjoy, including the freedom to vigorously and loudly disagree (regardless of how stupid one may sound) evolved largely from this Judeo-Christian ethic. I am probably diametrically opposed to Doug Cryer’s religious beliefs, but so what? I disagree with everyone on one issue or another. It would be a miserable world if I extended that disagreement to mistrust and suspicion on unrelated issues. Some people just aren’t happy unless they aren’t happy.

Stephen Morford

Ottawa

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The Coast, Halifax

August 12, 2011

Tax Dollars to Support Art

Nice fact sheet. Obviously Canadians do support and enjoy the arts. But the unanswered question is why do tax dollars need to be handed out to support the arts? If Canadians have more money left in their pockets aren’t they even MORE likely to support the arts with their money? I know I’ve had to pass on concerts and theatre events because I couldn’t afford to go…

Stephen Morford

Ottawa

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