We’re not your customers, so don’t sell us off

Rob! What’s up, Coach? Where are you going with this “Customer Service” baloney for those who elected you—and even those who voted against you? We thought you get the point that we’re not Toronto’s customers.

We’re its citizens!

Yet you keep talking about improving “customer service” when dealing with your constituents.

Let’s get things straight. Political institutions serve their citizens. They don’t sell services; they provide services.

Businesses exploit their customers in order to make a profit. Yes. Exploit. They don’t “serve” their customers except in a colloquial sense that a public relations flak would use. “Exploit” is the correct word because the obligation of all businesses is to make profits for their owners. That’s not wrong; that’s how it’s supposed to be. Otherwise there’d be no businesses figuring out how to attract and please consumers and there’d be fewer jobs and products as a result. (Def. “Exploit—to utilize, especially for profit; turn to practical account: to exploit a business opportunity.”)

The more needed and desired the services your government provides to us, its citizens, the better you’re doing your job we elected you to do. And that has nothing to do with slashing taxes if it also means slashing services.

You weren’t elected because you operate a printing company that is successful in exploiting its customers for profits. Voters brought you to office because you are a proven success at voluntarily coaching young people, many of them rescued because of that from leading failed or even criminal lives.

You can build and work with a team and that’s what you have at city hall: a huge team of civil servants and politicians who sorely need those coaching skills to serve your citizens.

So don’t go selling off our city properties to businesses that will use them exploit the citizens you serve in their quest for profits?

There may be a very few assets, such as some rundown former CityHome houses, that could be reasonably sold. But don’t go beyond that.

And for heaven’s sake don’t privatize nursing homes. It’s the ones in the public sector that are such humane institutions, giving dignity and comfort to those nearing the ends of their lives. Fudger House is a prime example Private nursing homes thrive by exploiting those elderly, especially homes running on low-end budgets and counting every square of toilet tissue.

That’s not why we elected you, Rob. The budget deficit isn’t the most important thing in your political life. Your citizens are. Don’t sell us off to exploitive private entrepreneurs.

And don’t imitate that ruinous jackass Mike Harris who wrecked your former municipality of Etobicoke with amalgamation and ripped us all off by making Hydro into a businesslike model of high-paid useless executives inventing pricing scams that include paying electricity suppliers to NOT produce.