The Quebec-Ontario Student Solidarity Tour kicked off last week, aiming to spread the Marxist revolution to Ontario students in order to free them from their oppressive subsidized tuition fees. The Canadian Federation of Students has decided to foot the bill for Mr. Nadeau-Dubois and other Quebec organizers to tour ten of Ontario’s universities. Nadeau-Dubois is the president of CLASSE, Montreal’s most militant and radical student group behind the Quebec student protests. Besides the lack of money and management skills to pay rent on time, there are many reasons why this zealot president will find Ontario an uphill battle for his vision.
The tour is expected to culminate on July 19th at an Ontario Student Strike Training camp, put on by the University of Toronto’s Graduate Student Union. Among the many useful life tools that you can learn at this socialist orgy are “How to Radicalize Student Associations”, “Using the Strike as a Tactic”, and “How to Effectively Enforce Strikes in the face of conflict and repression”. Has anyone stopped to tell M. Nadeau-Dubois that students are in a client-service provider relationship with universities and not a class war?
The majority of the non-student public support is coming from the trade unions: Public Service Alliance of Canada, the Canadian Union of Postal Workers, CUPE locals (including University of Toronto’s infamous 3902ers), and many more. Why are these trade unions supporting a movement that has no impact on improving the welfare of their adult workers? One statement read that “our union recognizes that the fight to keep tuition affordable is linked to the fight for decent wages and working conditions”.
It isn’t. Lowering tuition artificially increases the supply of people with a university degree, but at the same time, it does not increase the labour demand for people with those degrees. Moreover, an increase in university graduates drives down the cost of skilled labour and, by extension, real wages.
The student protesters will find stronger opposition to their shenanigans in Ontario. The Ontario government has already granted 30% off tuition reductions to a majority of full-time undergraduate students who have not been out of high school for more than four years. Secondly, the Ontario government is currently facing the greatest debt and deficit in the history of the province since the Great Depression – worse than even the Rae days. There will be no room for concessions to student protesters.
Even CFS-Ontario has been hesitant to declare war on the Ontario government with crippling student “strikes”. Sarah Jayne King, CFS-Ontario Treasurer, has stated that “CFS is a member-driven organization and does not currently have a mandate to support a strike. All decisions regarding policy and campaigns are made at bi-annual general meetings”. It’s so nice to see that Ms. King finally respects democratic processes, because she certainly disregarded them as the unelected VP Finance at the Student Federation of the University of Ottawa.
Ontario public opinion on the recent protests in Montreal is largely unfavourable. A recent poll conducted by Abacus Data states that a majority of 46% of Ontarians view the protests unfavourably. As Vincent Mosco, a professor at Queen’s University commented, there is no history of student strikes in Ontario and a different political approach is taken to postsecondary education. The liberal and conservative elements are much stronger in Ontario than in Quebec , home to separatists, communists, and champagne socialists.
While young unemployed males in Egypt and Greece are rioting for democratic rights and employment opportunities respectively, Nadeau-Dubois and his militant radical gang are terrorizing downtown Montreal because of a gradual increase in tuition fees adjusted for inflation over seven years. The irony is rank.
There are no vacancies for Nadeau-Dubois here in Upper Canada. God help any Ontarian landlord that lets him take up residence.
The views expressed in this opinion piece are the author's own and do not necessarily represent those of The Prince Arthur Herald.
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