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Endorsing NDP and Stephen Maynard

Darius Mirshahi | Social Justice Club President | Opinion | October 8th, 2007

Editorial opinions or comments expressed in this online edition of Interrobang newspaper reflect the views of the writer and are not those of the Interrobang or the Fanshawe Student Union. The Interrobang is published weekly by the Fanshawe Student Union at 1001 Fanshawe College Blvd., P.O. Box 7005, London, Ontario, N5Y 5R6 and distributed through the Fanshawe College community. Letters to the editor are welcome. All letters are subject to editing and should be emailed. All letters must be accompanied by contact information. Letters can also be submitted online by clicking here.
Although I am a person who values direct action and self-representation far more than the so-called democratic practice of ‘elected representation,' I still choose to take an hour out of my day once every four years to help elect the least evil of the politicians that run for office.

After watching the all-candidates forum in Forwell Hall two weeks ago, and asking questions, I was extremely disappointed in my local hopefuls. The Conservative clown, Jim Chapman, insulted students, claiming we don't vote unless bribed with alcohol, while never answering any questions with a straight answer. Khalil Ramal, an obvious talking head for the lying Liberal Party, never answered questions either, only threw around vague dollar statistics to confuse students on the Liberal Party's record.D.M.: You mentioned not going down that nuclear road, are you completely opposed to nuclear energy?
SM: Of course. Not just because of the environmental impacts, but also because of the cost. What we need to be doing instead is...making ourselves more energy-efficient as a province.

D.M.: The Liberals say that we have to either choose more nuclear or more coal, what is your take on that?
SM: We can eliminate the need for coal altogether [without adding more nuclear], if we move aggressively into solar hot water heating.

D.M.: The Liberals promised to shut down Ontario's coal power plants; have they shut down any?
SM: They haven't shut down any.

D.M.: Nanticoke Coal Power Plant, the biggest polluter in Canada is located very close to London. How quickly under an NDP government would we see it close?
SM: As quickly as possible. According to our retrofit plan it can be closed by 2011, but I'd like to see it close sooner.

D.M.: On a provincial level, how will we contribute to reducing global warming and fight climate change?
SM: It's mass transit...getting our freight back onto rail...but the biggest chunk of meeting our objectives is [switching to green] hydro.

D.M.: Are you for a total ban on plastic bags?
SM: Let's go beyond just plastic bags. Let's ban anything that can't be recycled.

D.M.: Should there be night buses on Fridays and Saturdays in London?
SM: The money is there. Let's hire the drivers, let's buy the buses and get them on those routes.

D.M.: How do we free students from this debt-trap that our student loans put us in?
SM: We stop charging interest on that debt...and roll back tuition to pre-McGuinty levels.

D.M.: What is your opinion of T.I.L.M.A (Trade Investment Labour Mobility Act)?
SM: It's crap. It's bad for education, it's bad for health care, it's bad for the environment, it's bad for labour...It's good for big business, it's good for multinationals.

D.M.: What do you think of the MMP (Mixed Member Proportional) system?
SM: I think it would make the system more proportional, more democratic in that sense.

D.M.: Will you be voting for MMP?
SM: My ballot is secret...but yes.

D.M.: Should we lower the drinking age to 18?
SM: Yes, the age of majority. You should also be able to smoke a joint at 18.

D.M.: Do you smoke weed?
SM: Yeah

D.M.: How do we get crack out of the hood?
SM: By eliminating poverty.

D.M.: What should we do about prostitution?
SM: Legalize it, get them to unionize and give them labour rights, workplace safety...protect these women.

D.M.: Do you agree with the statement “Graffiti is art”?
SM: Yeah.

Since Stephen is recent student with a lot of common sense and sincere in his desire to change the system from within, I am supporting him in this campaign and urging other students to do the same.
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