Chris Vander Doelen, the Star’s auto writer, threw in his 2 cents worth into the debate in one of his recent Blogs. After reading it, I got annoyed and just decided to take his latest missive apart paragraph by paragraph.
Autoworkers should muster three loud cheers for the federal government’s proposed border crossings bill. Those companies seeking infrastructure work and those seeking infrastructure jobs via the Bridge Co.’s project might not agree.
The tough-sounding new law the first good news we’ve heard on this crucial issue in years. The border crossings legislation the federal government announced this week is also a very good thing for the future of Ontario’s auto and manufacturing industries. It may sound “tough but it is anti-business as I demonstrated in my blog. If this is “good” news, then is his view of life is a lot different than mine. Actually, if it passes, there will be years of litigation that will block everything at the border
Canadian business and trade groups have been warning with increasing fear since 9/11 that border backups, particularly in Windsor, are a threat to their livlihood and the jobs of their employees. Sheeeeesh, didn’t he read his Editor’s column on the "Huron Church chaos" which recently proved that there was no problems on Huron Church other than truckers going too fast…some back-up! Why do Windsorites of all people perpetuate the myth?
On the U.S. side, security experts have warned that the Windsor-Detroit crossing, the most important between Canada and the U.S. and arguably the most important such crossing in the world, was a prime economic target in dire need of redundancy to protect the economic link from terrorist attack. Then why don’t we easily and cheaply put in reverse customs?
Redundancy roughly translates to “another bridge or tunnel, far away from the existing ones.” How about Port Huron, is that far enough away for redundancy? Is a mile down the road as DRIC proposes "far away?"
Yet the liklihood of a finding a solution to threat is less likely today than it was five years ago. And one of the main impediments to change on the Windsor border was the increasing control over the frontier by one company — the Michigan group that owns the Ambassador Bridge. Huh…..having a smoothly operating border with the best operator in North America is a problem?
Bridge officials are laughing off the legislation today, as though it means nothing. In fact it means the near-monopoly they enjoy, and intended to expand, is over. Actually, the Bi-National engineers proved that they have NO monopoly!
It’s no secret that the Bridge people have been angling to cement their control over the Windsor-Detroit border -— and indeed it is their right and duty as a private company. They’ve argued the existing bridge has enough capacity, even as they plan to build a second span next to their existing Bridge. Oh my, being a private company is now bad
They’ve bought up nearly all the available land on both sides of the border downriver from the Ambassador Bridge, anticipating that if governments order that a second span were to be built, they would either argue to build it or own the land under it and have a say in its operation.
That’s good business on their part. So what is wrong with being a good business person? Chris makes it almost a sin to be smarter than your competition or the Government
They’ve tried to buy control of the U.S. half of the Windsor-Detroit tunnel from the desperate City of Detroit, which is overspending so badly and is so far in debt it will agree to anything, no matter how economically suicidal, if it means a few million it can use to stave off its impending and probably inevitable bankruptcy. Get the facts right about the deal….but then it makes the thesis harder to support
That’s also good business on the bridge’s part. But it’s bad for the public on both sides of the border, and for the auto industry and other exporters, and all the people who work for them. Making a bald statment is hardly an argument. Errrrrrrrrrrrr the logic is???
Windsor-Detroit already has what are believed to be the slowest transit and the highest tolls for any international crossing in the world. Imagine what the delays and the tolls could reach if the tunnel, the Ambassador Bridge and a new span were all controlled by the same private company. Geez, get the facts first and then get them right. Actually the City and Detroit-owned Tunnel tolls are higher and the Bridge times are better, much better than say the "public” Peace Bridge
Monopolies are bad for business, they’re bad for consumers, they’re bad for creating new jobs and protecting existing ones, if they depend on just-in-time delivery, as Ontario’s auto business does. How does this fit in? If you say "bad" 3 times, does that make the non-argument stronger?
Best of all, the new federal law will also neuter the worst actors on the border file — City of Windsor politicians, from its city councillors to its MPPs and MPs. Fearful, dithering, pandering to whichever pressure group sound loudest, we know our local political leaders were no more capable of fixing our border problems than they are of building a hockey arena or fixing health care. Good part of this I can agree to. The citizens’ groups I have been involved in were smart not just loud and that is why we won
Now professionals with no local favorites to play are in charge of making choices. About time. Heavens…let bureaucrats decide……I wonder if they like DRTP...Help!