1/23/2006

Voting: A Chance to Speak Out Against Criminal Behaviour

I just read an article in the Toronto Sun that made me sad, depressed and angry. It also makes me hope the Liberals get their butts kicked today.
...$250 energy rebate cheques are being sent to criminals behind bars, who already got to cast their vote in the comfort of their cells, heated by our tax dollars.
What?
People who don't pay heating bills are getting an energy rebate. Les mentioned this before. The kicker here though is that the people getting the rebate are criminals.
One inmate had been at the detention centre... since December 2004... He has 23 convictions, including armed robbery and drug offences. This officer, who's worked for Ontario's ministry of correctional services for 16 years and asked not to be named for fear of being disciplined for speaking out, went on: "I'm delivering money to criminals that's been stolen from me and other hard-working taxpayers in Canada."
For fear of being disciplined!
Wow. What a "justice" system we have.
This isn't the first time, he said. In 2001, in another lamebrained Liberal scheme to help Canadians deal with skyrocketing home heating costs, many inmates received rebate cheques of $125 to $250. It was part of the botched $1.4-billion rebate program, whereby only $250 million went to low-income Canadians struggling with home heating costs. According to Canada's auditor general, most of the rest of the money went to dead people, inmates and Canadians who don't pay any heating bills at all.
Dead people?
They sent cheques to dead people?
What about me? I pay taxes. Why do the dead get my money?
It gets worse, if you can believe it.
Martin and... Ralph Goodale, announced they were again delivering their flawed rebate program, this time at cost of $2.4 billion. And now criminals are again getting cheques. The Liberals also voted to pump up their own gas allowances by 10%, with an MP now getting $500 for every 1,000 km he or she drives. "Many of my colleagues who work here are struggling with high gasoline prices, home heating costs and electricity bills. Yet, MPs and criminals are getting relief, and not us,"... Meanwhile... tax auditors are quick to come after hard-working, middle-class families. For example, the disgruntled officer said he was audited after claiming moving expenses to take a job north of Toronto. As well, a colleague he works with is being forced to pay back $86 in a GST credit given to his late mother-in-law, who passed away last year...Bottom line is it's not just energy rebate cheques making their way into our prisons. Inmates commonly receive GST credits, worker's compensation, tax refunds, and welfare cheques ...many a telemarketing scam and other frauds are carried out from inside prison walls. Yet our correctional officers are powerless to blow the whistle. My insider explained, "If I call up and say an inmate is committing fraud, I have violated the oath of secrecy I took as a peace officer."
I bet I can guess how this corrections officer is voting!
How frustrated they must be.

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