“Taking care of business…”

The Bachman Turner Overdrive seem to say it best in their song, “Taking care of business (every day).” It seems to be the theme song of the conservatives who are mismanaging things in Ontario at this time. These people will bend over backwards to help business, big and small, and yet screw the disadvantaged and downtrodden of our citizens.

Even in the midst of a pandemic, they are true to their political mantra. They are open to business. They will use ministerial orders for friendly developers to exploit wetlands and other inconveniently designated land. They are also disinclined to come down hard on long-term care facility proprietors who fail to protect their clientele. They have even quietly taken on a major updating of Ontario’s liquor laws.

While I am normally in favour of bringing our archaic liquor laws into the 21st century, this does not strike me as an upgrading that will do anybody any good. And the fact that Ontario attorney general Doug Downey made the announcement made me even more suspicious of the government’s motivation.

Downey is the ward healer from Orillia and Severn, Ontario who was parachuted into our Barrie riding to keep former Ontario conservative leader, Patrick Brown, out of provincial politics. It is not at all sure whether Mr. Downey has ever stopped in Barrie when going to and from his home in Severn and Toronto’s Queen’s Park.

The sad note is that I have never seen much of a choice in the wines offered by local restaurants. And we do have some fine restaurants.

But wine lists locally tend to feature cheap wines at high prices. While the mark up that restaurants charge for serving wines and other alcoholic beverages might be justified when being served with food in the restaurant, it does not make sense if it is for home consumption. The public would be well advised to buy their wines for home use directly from the liquor control board stores. There is much better variety and fairer prices.

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