It has been about a week since I last wrote an article on this website. Normally, if someone wants their blog to be successful, they need to invest all of their time into writing good material. Not some of their time. All of it. But I'm not what most people would call 'normal.' No. I expect this website to continue being successful. There's more to this website than my opinions. There's photographs that I believe are worthy of awards. There's a campaign to add a new Lay's potato chip flavour. There will be new features in the future. This site will grow from 1,400 visitors a month to over 2,000 by the end of this year, to double that by the end of next. I feel that already, 3 months since the launch of www.matthewfrankkot.ca, there have been some successes.
Anyway, the first topic tonight is the most popular topic on Twitter right now, Hillary Clinton's interview with ABC's Diane Sawyer. #HillaryonABC is (as of 10:00 pm, EST) the 3rd most popular hashtag in the Twitterverse. She's a very important woman. The most powerful job on Earth is hers for the taking. Polls show that she would crush even the strongest opposition candidate. Hillary talked about Monica Lewinsky. "I wish her well." She talked about her decision to run for President. It's "likely" that her choice will be made in 2015.
Mrs. Clinton discussed Benghazi, saying that she was not directly responsible for the attacks. There are people with more expertise than her in the field of securing diplomatic posts. Of course, that is true, very true indeed. At the end of the interview, I felt that this topic was somewhat overexposed. She has said everything before. Diane Sawyer's interview wasn't special. It's safe to say that millions of people around the world watched it, but still, with ABC and Diane Sawyer promoting it like crazy, even the dullest, most boring interview can be made into a huge spectacle.
The other topic, the Ontario election. I'll be brief. I'm voting for the Liberal Party. I've made my endorsement. Yes, I said that Tim Hudak did win the leader's debate, but still, my riding's Liberal candidate, David Orazietti, has brought so much to Sault Ste. Marie. New schools, a new hospital, transit funding. The Liberals have invested so much, and they will continue investing in health care, education and transit.
I like the Conservative leader, I like Andrea Horwath too, but I vote for the party that will make Ontarians lives' easier. I vote for a candidate that can offer my city more than the others. And the Liberal candidate, I strongly feel that he will deliver more to the Sault from Queen's Park than the other candidates.
At a recent Chamber of Commerce meeting, Sault Ste. Marie Mayor Debbie Amaroso says that she believes it will take ten years for the city's economy to fully recover from a decade of recession. She envisions the city's population to be 90,000 in 2024, and she also sees our city better off financially. Yes, good for her for giving an optimistic answer. Unfortunately, there's a problem here: She's been mayor for four years already, since 2010, and not much has changed in the Sault. Any jobs we've gotten have been short-term construction jobs. And then, she expects us to wait another few years to see any improvement? We want jobs NOW, not in a decade, not in HALF a decade. Now.
Of course, I'll repeat the argument I have made many, many, many times on this website, I'm starting to become repetitive. But what I say is 100% the truth. The provincial and federal governments, they're the ones who bring the construction jobs to the Sault. They've done so much, new hospital, new schools, the feds are giving us a $50 million bridge plaza. But it's up to the local EDC to lure businesses to our city. The "Economic Development" Corportation. The goal is to DEVELOP THE ECONOMY. And they're failing miserably. Ooooh, a PetSmart and oooooh, an H&M in the Station Mall. Big deal. (Sarcasm.) The Municipal government is responsible for bringing jobs to Sault Ste. Marie, and I know that since the Mayor's inauguration in 2010, the unemployment rate in this city is still quite high. I bet that not even a thousand jobs have been created since she took office. That record isn't something a politician should be proud of.
We need a Mayor and a City Council that works tirelessly to promote this City. We need a local government that advocates Sault Ste. Marie to businesses. Like Target. Costco. Ikea. Toys R Us. Big department stores. Restaurant chains. Any retail store. We need industrial jobs. Councillor Steve Butland, I respect him greatly, Elementa brings jobs to the Sault. He has advocated for this, and this is what every Councillor should be doing. Making phone calls, emailing companies. Heck, I'm not even a City Councillor and I've been in touch with Giant Tiger, suggesting that they buy the old Liquidation World on Trunk Road.
When a Councillor or a mayor or anyone who works in City Hall can't bring progress to a city, they ought to be fired! They ought to be canned. Thrown out of office. The people of this city threw three incumbent Councillors out in 2010, hoping that new blood would be what the Sault needs. Well, the new blood that the citizens of this city elected, there seems to have been no change. None. We are where we were in 2000. 2005. 2010. 2015, if we elect the same old people, then Sault Ste. Marie will, for another four years, continue to shrivel up much like Elliot Lake did. This is not Elliot Lake. This is a city on the border with the United States. This is a city with 75,000 people. A city with a geographic advantage. We could have a good pitch for tourists to come, but we're not investing in anything that could draw tourists here. We have a market for Target, a department store that will create over 100 jobs, and they've settled in North Bay, a city of less than 60,000.
The EDC isn't doing enough. The mayor isn't doing enough. MOST (not all) Councillors are not doing enough. It's time to elect some good, new, young, energized people to represent you. In October, vote for someone who will bring jobs to the Sault NOW. Who will advocate with PASSION to bring us those jobs. Elect Councillors who will make the Sault a better place. Pull us out of the recession we've been in for YEARS. We don't have ten years to turn the economy around. Let's take the first step to a real recovery when we vote in October.
Kathleen Wynne walked onto the debate stage with a big target painted on her back this evening. Incumbents are always attacked during debates. This debate was no different. Tim Hudak and Andrea Horwath, the leaders of the Progressive Conservatives and the New Democrats, ganged up on the Premier during the first half hour of the debate. The first question was about the two cancelled gas plants. Ms. Wynne apologized many times, while Mr. Hudak tells us that her apologies are worthless and that if re-elected, it is possible that the Liberals would make another colossal billion dollar mistake.
Tim Hudak gave us straight talk. He told us that he wouldn't lie. And he stuck to that. He won this debate. While Kathleen Wynne apologized and dodged questions and failed to offer actual ideas, Tim Hudak gave us solutions. He vowed to cut down the cabinet, he vowed to create a million jobs. He vowed to resign if his Million Jobs plan did not work. Wow. He vowed to shrink government. He vowed to keep taxes low. Voters are eating this up. Hudak talked about his grandparents losing their farm. He talked passionately about investing in education and talked about investing in special needs programs, and I think that he seemed like, on that stage, a true leader, someone who understands the struggles of people, who knows the needs of Ontarians. "Hope is on the way," was his closing message. He reiterated his pledge to resign if his million jobs plan did not work. Tim Hudak won this debate, hands down.
The United States of America is at a crossroads. The national debt is now over Seventeen and a half TRILLION dollars. Cities are going bankrupt. Detroit is one of those cities. Detroit was once the center of the midwest. Now, less than 40% of the streetlamps in Detroit even light up at night. Michigan's unemployment rate, as of April of this year, is 7.4%, compare that to the national average of 6.3%. Michigan has two Democratic Senators, and they haven't fought hard enough for Michigan in Congress. Debbie Stabenow and Carl Levin have accomplished little for Michigan during their years in the Senate. Rep. Gary Peters is running as the Democratic nominee to replace retiring Sen. Levin's seat. What exactly do we know about Gary Peters?
Well, we know that he flipped on Obamacare. The health care law that has dropped millions of Americans from their plans. We know that he once said that he was 'proud' of the legislation, and then he distanced himself from it. Why? Because a poll showed that only 34% of Michigan's residents support Obamacare. 48% oppose it. The congressman flipped because of a poll. Secretary of State, Terri-Lynn Land, the Republican nominee, has opposed Obamacare since the introduction of the law. She is on the right side of history.
What do we know about Secretary Land? Well, we know that she grew up in a trailer park, so when people say that she's "out of touch with average Michiganers," that's obviously wrong. She knows the struggles of the middle class. And when Rep. Peters accuses Sec. Land of waging a "war on women," it's pretty sad, considering that the Republican candidate IS a woman. How can a woman wage a war on women? That's stupid. That's sexist. The Democrats know that they're losing, so they choose to deploy sexism. It's disturbing.
Michigan has been stuck with Democrats for decades. Governor Granholm has created a humongous mess in Michigan, and Governor Snyder is cleaning up her mess. The Democrats in Washington continue to spend America into a hole, and Republicans, they see what the future is going to look like. And it's not a good future. We need the Republicans to regain control of the Senate, so that we can STOP President Obama's plans to destroy jobs and bankrupt America. Just this week, he released a plan that will cut energy. That plan will cut jobs as well, and it will cost billions to impliment. Terri-Lynn Land is against this plan, and Michigan needs her in Washington, fighting for a better state. Vote for Land in November. Vote for a better future for Michigan.
About The Author
Matthew Frank Kot was born and raised here in Sault Ste Marie. He first starting writing articles for Soonews.ca in early 2008, becoming the city's youngest columnist and journalist. He then went on to write for Local2, and for a short time had his "MATTer of Opinion" column on SaultOnline.com. Matthew was very involved in the 2010 and 2014 Municipal Elections and wrote several opinion pieces about important issues. In 2011, Matthew started Sault Transit Reform and has continued advocating for a better transit system since then.