Monday, September 03, 2007

Richard Evans Is Channeling Chandler

What is it with these people?

First this week, we get Craig Chandler ranting about how you must vote Conservative or LEAVE Alberta!. Chandler's hard-nosed tirade was nothing more than a mean spirited tirade against people who dare disagree with his perception of Alberta's politics. (which may well be in the process of swinging away from the PC's)

Then we get Richard Evans complaining about all the money we spend on the homeless in Calgary.

According to Mr. Evans' thinking, 13% of the homeless moved here moved here to specifically suck off the public teat.

Why does he claim this? Because the statistics he's been looking at show the following:

Among absolutely homeless individuals who were surveyed, the most frequently cited reasons for coming to Calgary were:

[…]

7% - better access to services (health or social services, including schools)

6% - more / better shelter accommodations

[…]


Of course, what he fails to admit is that these reasons may well be one of many reasons that drew someone to Calgary, second he assumes that the reasons are mutually exclusive. (I don't have the study's questionnaire at hand, so I'm going to guess that they probably aren't mutually exclusive) That aside, I think the other end of Richard's statistics is equally important - by far the vast majority of homeless people are there for reasons other than intentionally being a drain on public resources.

So, according to Mr. Evans, the money required to look after these people is approximately 110 new police officers. While I think there is merit in expanding Calgary's law enforcement agency, I don't think it's exactly wise - or appropriate - to do so by punishing the homeless further. Poverty is not a problem that you deal with by putting more police on the streets.

Both Chandler and Evans exhibit the worst attributes of modern-day conservative ethos - a hostile mean-spiritedness that brooks no opposition, and is devoid of compassion for others whose lot in life is less fortunate.

13 comments:

Richard said...

You're beginning to look obsessed... Maybe you should write a few "letters to the editor" regarding the "evil neocon" in order to help you find your happy place.

Grog said...

No, Mr. Evans - I'm merely pointing out the obviously asinine assumptions that you keep making in your pronouncements about homeless people.

As for my opinion of "neo-cons", I'm sure you've already figured that out.

Richard said...

Ok, maybe you should write some "letters to the editor" regarding my positions on homelessness...

Grog said...

Ok, maybe you should write some "letters to the editor" regarding my positions on homelessness...

And perhaps as a candidate, you might want to start thinking of actually talking about how to solve problems instead of bitching about the statistics.

Richard said...

I'm bitching about the statistics because the current administration has been throwing millions of dollars every year at the problem while talking about solutions and not actually getting anything done. The stats are measurable and relevant in every sense. You can talk about causation and pull on the heart-strings all you want but the numbers tell the real tale when it comes to measuring progress.

Grog said...

So far, you've claimed the statistics are invalid - apparently because you don't like the definitions being used; bitched about money; blamed the poor for being poor.

Got any solutions, or are you going to continue to repeat tired talking points?

Richard said...

So far, you've claimed the statistics are invalid - apparently because you don't like the definitions being used;

Inflating the stats by including people who aren't really homeless is intellectually dishonest. A guy staying on his buddy's couch for a few weeks until he finds a new place isn't really homeless. He's got a job. He's paying rent. He's eating three squares/day. Don't lump him in (numerically) with the folks staying in shelters.

bitched about money;

$6,000,000 is knowingly being spent every year to shelter people who are purposely here to suck off the system without any real measures in place to weed those leeches out. My assertion is that those funds can and should be targeted towards things/people who need them.

blamed the poor for being poor.

That's an outright lie.

Got any solutions, or are you going to continue to repeat tired talking points?

Solutions? Yup! They include placing the mentally disabled in facilities where they can be properly cared for, workfare programs, allowing secondary suites and getting the city bureaucracy the hell out of the charity business.

You'll see those solutions surface as part of my campaign after nomination day.

Grog said...

Inflating the stats by including people who aren't really homeless is intellectually dishonest. A guy staying on his buddy's couch for a few weeks until he finds a new place isn't really homeless.

And what about the longer term cases (and I know of a few) that couch surf on the charity of their friends because they cannot afford housing in this burg? Are they not ultimately homeless? (They are lucky enough to have charitable friends who can help them out, that doesn't change their fundamental problem. Sorry, Richard, but I won't give you that one - poverty has far too many faces for me to accept rigid, narrowly focused definitions of it.

blamed the poor for being poor.

That's an outright lie.


No, it's not - it's what I read out of your drivel about "responsibility" - posted here, and here and I talked about why I think your utterly clueless here.

As far as _I_ am concerned, you have quite nicely blamed the poor for being poor - by whining and bitching about "bad choices" - more or less you have been saying "it's all their own fault, why should I help them out?".

Richard said...

it's what I read out of your drivel about "responsibility"

So instead of actually reading my words, you instead projected what you'd expect to hear from an evil neo-con.

Grog said...

So, you mean you meant something other than poverty is the fault of the poor? Or did you merely fail to state your more nuanced opinion in words?

Not that I much care - if you have real solutions to problems, put 'em out there - otherwise you're just spewing talking points that are long past their 'best before' date.

Anonymous said...

I've got to add my two cents here. If what I'm reading is even remotely correct then the individual 'richard' is only responding because he's feeling picked on, instead of offering answers. 'Grog' is doing what is needed, pointing out the deficiencies of the current situation.

A person sleeping on a friend's couch for however long is a homeless person. He has no official address/place of residence therefore cannot legally apply for things such as a driver's license, passport or even a home/cell phone number, let alone keep a bank account, credit card or any sort of financial asset. Let's see you get a 'handout' from the Province without an official address. And unless I'm in error I doubt that the use of your friend's home address will be permitted and will most likely land you and your friend in legal trouble for a perceived act of fraud.

As for using the 'religious' aspect of offering charity to those in need, why do we even bother with a system of state welfare? Past history will show the serious shortcomings of this, and the state took on the job at the people's bidding to provide something more even handed and fair. Yet even today when both the provincial and federal governments are desperately trying to cut the strings that tie them to the system they have no alternative except to hope that it'll all go away and that private charitable organisations will pick up the mess. But have you looked at the last tax return setup? You'll never get your full amount donated back as a credit only a fraction, yet 'political donations' are allowed 100% credit. Nice scam to have us pay your various political debts.

E.

Nikitaa said...

Writes Richard:

They include placing the mentally disabled in facilities where they can be properly cared for, workfare programs, allowing secondary suites and getting the city bureaucracy the hell out of the charity business.

Richard. You clearly state that your solutions include placing the mentally disabled in institutional facilities. There are a couple of important points you need to consider.

First, there are a number of people in this province who receive AISH. One of them happens to work for me on a part-time basis. Anyone who meets this individual will clearly see that he is only capable of working about 6 hours a week. He is fortunate enough to live in a setting with a family member. However, what does the future hold for him? A group home? Have you ever looked into group homes? They are certainly not a healthy, nurturing place to live.

This person is not capable of living on his on, but the ideal situation is a supportive roommate where he is encouraged to grow and explore. In many ways, this is what a family member can be. Certainly, on the pittance of income that AISH provides, and supplement with a few hours of paid work, he has a hard time covering even the basics.

So, Mr. Evans, your solution for this individual is to place him in an institution where he will be little more than a number, with no voice, and no rights. Caregivers in such places are often paid minimal wages, and are unable to provide the appropriate opportunities for an individual to grow. Institutionalization is little better than a prison sentence, and only necessary in the most severe of situations.

I am a businessperson - but one with a heart. The taxes that I pay should be focused on helping those who truly need assistance, and not punishing them for their situations. I do not accept the blind argument that "charitable" organizations are adequate without contribution and oversight on behalf of the public.

Now, perhaps you are merely referring to those who live on the streets. Many who are in this situation have a variety of psychological conditions range from depression to schizophrenia or worse. Perhaps these are the people that you wish to force into institutions against their will.

Mr. Evans, I certainly am thankful that I do not live in, or share, your vision of Alberta.

To paraphrase Charles Dickens, your solutions sound rather like "have they no more prisons, have they no more orphanages?"

Anonymous said...

You're beginning to look obsessed... Maybe you should write a few "letters to the editor"

Oooh...he's mastered sarcasm. That's a skill that will get you far in politics.