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Separation: Some serious thoughts

Steve Campbell

Steve Campbell

Okay, the time has come. I have previously launched the idea of separating the County from Canada, largely as a gesture to embarrass the federal and provincial governments, and have some fun in the process. As Pat Larkin said: “We are one consonant away from being Prince Edward Country!” Most of our municipal vehicle signs could have been fixed with a magic marker.
I’ve talked to a lot of people since then, and a lot of really intelligent and skilled people, who don’t consider the idea to be completely foolish. Some of them are retired lawyers, economic consultants, business leaders and – surprisingly enough – those who have worked in government circles are the quickest to denounce and vilify the Disney World they once served.
So I have modified the concept, and am going to pitch a realistic possibility – though somewhat simplistic in its rough stages – to form a new province within the Dominion of Canada.
This has been done many times before in Canadian history, so it’s not impossible, or even improbable. Times have changed since the 1800s (and, in Newfoundland’s case, the 1900s) and this gives us something of an advantage, i.e. using computers instead of horses and portage canoes to pass information.
Here is the beginning of my argument, which I hope will be modified and improved by you as time goes on.

1) The Province of Ontario no longer serves the interests of the people of Prince Edward County, and rural Ontario in general;
2) The process of Queen’s Park representing the needs and interests of the people of Ontario has been turned upside down. All governments now act from the top down, without consultation and without conferring with the people affected. They work behind their closed doors talking to fellow politicians to determine legislation and policy, and then deliver their edicts to the public;
3) Regardless of the political party in power, the party system in Ontario is designed to obtain and maintain power and control of the government. Each party is required to build larger bureaucracies, engage in cronyism and corruption, bungling of billion-dollar projects, and outright theft of tax money to serve their ends, and those of their political friends – and make empty promises (at election time!) to serve their only purpose: to get re-elected;
4) Corporations and lobby groups now form government policy, based on their own interests. This is why researchers, engineers, economists and other skilled professionals are not approached to comment on the validity of the projects – it’s more about money than it is about good results;
5) Through the Green Energy Act, the government has removed the democratic right of County people to determine their own future;
6) The province has downloaded responsibility of many services to the already-strapped municipalities – yet somehow still manages to call all the shots on any municipal action;

The people of Prince Edward County hereby make application to secede from the Province of Ontario, and form the Province of Prince Edward County.
(We can’t lose ‘The County’ name, and this is acceptable wording … remember when the 401 sign said ‘The City of the Corporation of the County of Prince Edward’ during the Harris restructuring? Apparently wild laughter was causing traffic accidents on the 401, so they changed it.)
Sadly, before we get to the really fun part in which I explain why this can actually work, I still need to indulge in some proper rhetoric, to satisfy the keen legal minds who have left Bay Street to make up most of our governing officials.
Of course, we need a ‘Declaration of Independence from the Province of Ontario’. So:

INASMUCH AS The government of the Province of Ontario:
1) Chooses to remove our democratic rights as Ontarians, and
2) No longer serves the interests of Prince Edward County, a rural Ontario area it has no ability to understand, and
3) Has mandated the destruction of wildlife and habitat in a designated protected area, and
4) Can’t understand that destroying the ecosystem by removing everything Green in Ontario and replacing it with concrete to create unnecessary electrical power will create a far bigger problem than a possible future lack of power, and
5) Has persecuted through legislation the operation of proper small businesses, which were doing quite fine without you, thank you very much, and
6) Places taxes on top of taxes on everything that doesn’t move, and some things that do, and
7) Gives us little in return, unless we happen to have voted for the party which ends up forming the government, and
8) Thinks that people at Long Point can take a subway to BGH if they have a heart attack, and
9) Exploits all of rural Ontario (including Northern Ontario) for energy, food, recreation and enjoyment of our (for now) available resources and yet is quite willing to flatten it all under a bulldozer  blade and ‘pave paradise’ in order to fulfill its unholy marriage to foreign corporations …

that the people of Prince Edward County wish to regain decision-making power for their own future through the creation of their own provincial representation within the Dominion of Canada.
We the people would like to kiss goodbye the never-ending shenanigans, the bungled projects, the enormous deficit, the expense-account abuses, the political favours, ongoing corruption and scandals, the corporate ties, and the self-serving behaviour of a government which, indeed, only lives to serve itself.
Readers are already  picking up their pens and sharpening their keyboards to say: “We can’t because ….”
But I firmly believe we have a lot to gain, and little to lose by shaking off the tyrants who take our money and give us meagre returns. And worse, use our tax money to fight us in courts.
Next issue the fun begins, as I break down the advantages and disadvantages of staying or leaving Ontario.
I think it will hurt us a lot less than it hurts them.

Filed Under: News from Everywhere ElseSteve Campbell

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  1. sanmc says:

    While we are at creating a new province/identity/country, lets make that a big fat, tax free religious one. With a big county church. Make the whole island a holy place. The Following in robes and red sashes swinging old cast iron pots on a chain crying yippydo dah, as all the artists paint god bless ourselves on our cars and forearms. Where coffers would lay in the crevices at Hyuck’s point guarded by the junkyard dogs. And the so-called halter boys do all the gardening of organic potatoes and pigeon-toed cattle for the yearly feast as we peep through the shadows of Whitney Toll bridge, Belleville looking for the cross-border shoppers returning home for a day at the beach.

    We’ll out grow big bro’ sowing hemp seed heavily everywhere over the whole island, religious ceremonies for health, wealth, justice and mellow relaxation. And grow the stuff on rooftops making them Green Energy to feed our bodies a healthy dose of THC healing cancer and all other aliments that doctors push their corporate drugs onto us for continued illness via side effects. Now that would be going green and clean. Wear our “fruit of the loom” underwear with pride and prejudice of our new relationship with our parent gov’t.

    Be nice to have our own country, own money; one side of the coin a Blanding’s turtle with a grape in its mouth and a wine bottle on the other side. Hey, we could have a “loomers” flag too.

    I’d vote yes, seriously for separation, not unlike when Prince Edward divorced Fergie. . . anywhooo …

    (modify this plan folks it’s only a draft of a brainless storming)

  2. Olmanonthemtn says:

    Can’t say whether the thread is dead but the idea has the potential to “keep em stitches.”
    We need to generate some laughs given the governments we have! We need satire to expose and admonish individual, business and government unethical and incompetent behaviour, and through parody offer suggestion for improvement.

    “The theory behind representative government is that superior men-or at least men not inferior to the average in ability and integrity-are chosen to manage the public business, and that they carry on this work with reasonable intelligence and honest. There is little support for that theory in known facts…” H.L. Mencken

    “The political and commercial morals of the United States are not merely food for laughter, they are an entire banquet”.- Mark Twain in Eruption

  3. Gary says:

    I think between the Smart Mark’s bewilderment and the over bearing guy who has to push purpose and principle into every topic the thread is dead. RIP

  4. The Smart Mark says:

    I literally cannot believe what I read with my own eyes in this column and in the comment section anymore.

  5. MI says:

    Let us put it on the ballot for the next election. A referendum to see if anyone is serious. Perhaps this could be a first step in having some input and control over issues such as (over) policing, windmills, and our healthcare. Sorry Quinte, we don’t want to be your little brother and just do as you say.

  6. Wolf Braun says:

    What will be the PURPOSE (reason why it will exist) of a County government? And what PRINCIPLES will we want our elected officials and bureaucrats to follow when making tough decisions on our behalf (when spending our scarce tax dollars)? 🙂

  7. Wolf Braun says:

    Why stop at setting up the Province of PE ? Why not go all in and set up the CountRy of PE ? Keeps ALL tax $$$ here!:-)

  8. Olmanonthemtn says:

    Hey Hoss sorry I mean Dennis good inspiring words we have governments that are motivated by self-interest and expediency. They are more than happy to exploit public self-absorption, cynicism and apathy. Daniel Webster spoke of the never-ending job of ensuring” a people’s government, made for the people, made by the people, and answerable to the people.”(and thats all the people not just those who gave them a majority of seats and do not represent majority of the Ontario public ). The Family Compact we now have in Muddy York may now feel immune to addressing small town, rural and northern concerns but they can’t stop us from advocating a better social vision and better models of governance for ourselves. We can use its courts and bureaucracy against itself, embarrass them which includes satire by exposing unethical, undemocratic, incompetent and irresponsible behaviour.
    “The greatest patriotism is to tell your country when it is behaving dishonorably, foolishly, viciously.”
    ― Julian Barnes, Flaubert’s Parrot

  9. Mark says:

    Kinda like a fantasy pool! Fun if you have the time for such nonsense. Water bills came out today so I expect many are working overtime.

  10. judy kennedy says:

    both said may have ;

  11. Olmanonthemtn says:

    Judy kennedy, mistaken obi wan kenobi for yoda you have, go back to jedi school, you need. Yes, hmmm.

  12. Olmanonthemtn says:

    wow some serious irony going on here between author and commenters with serious satire inspiring serious sarcasm hmm I just realized perhaps this comment could
    be construed as being satirical or would it be sarcastic. Oh the irony!

  13. Dennis Bond says:

    I have been reading your columns for many a year. Does reading over your shoulder while cheating on tests in high school count?

    I have not always agreed but here you have a clear winner.

    This one makes a great deal of sense and not for the first time in my life do I consider it.

    Government, by definition means “political direction and control of it’s members.” If the present political groups are only half fulfilling thier mandate.. control with no is incumbent on it’s memebers to respond with positive direction from within. As members, the people of the county, have an obligation to express and action these directions which ultimately lead to a sustainable (which is used to mean lasting not just “green” or licesnce an group to say I am speaking about them in particular) socio/political/economic/etc. environment.

    Image the county, with it’s natural boundaries and varying commerce, being responsible to maintain not only itself but effective citizenship. Think of how it could be a leader to a new political structure beside Ontario and in Canada. Representation through population… a fanatical idea.

    Would some call it “Countyism” and scoff at it.

    Imagine the political landscape if more areas of this province or country redefined themselves and said “We aren’t going to take it anymore.”


    I look forward to your rationale for (dis)advantages.

    As someone who was born in the county, moved away and then back, then out again, such an idea would not only draw me back but reengage my political spirit.

    Keep writing Steve. Many are listening.

  14. Gary says:

    Someone referred to it earlier as garbage.

  15. judy kennedy says:

    To paraphrase Obi Wan Kenobi ” The Crap is strong in you..”

  16. Olmanonthemtn says:

    Can we have our own anthem and flag?

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