Need to know: James Moore gets candid on child poverty

The Industry Minister started talking about not feeding his neighbours’ kids

by Nick Taylor-Vaisey

Adrian Wyld/CP

The story
The Industry Minister should know better than to be so candid with a reporter. During a brief interview, James Moore started talking about who was responsible for addressing child poverty, and he pointed the finger at provincial governments. “We’re not going to usurp the province’s jurisdiction on that,” he said, sounding downright deferential. ”Empowering families with more power and resources so that they can feed their children is, I think, a good thing.” These statements, on their own, are straight out of the Tory playbook—nothing extraordinary, in the least.

Moore insisted that Canada has “never been wealthier,” and that everyone wants to “make sure that kids go to school full bellied.” But then he made a bad error; he asked a rhetorical question about the role of government. “Is that always the government’s job, to be there to serve people their breakfast?” Academically, that’s a fair question. Politically, it was foolish. And then, as if to drive the point home, he doubled down. “Is it my job to feed my neighbour’s child? I don’t think so,” Moore said, punctuating things with soft laughter.

Twitter erupted, as it does. Moore engaged in damage control, mostly dismissing that final quote as reported out of context. Maybe it was, maybe it wasn’t. But Moore’s spin was lost in the noise. Probably, no one noticed his tweet about the Canada-B.C. Social Housing Agreement, signed by the government just months after taking office, that Moore insisted has “yielded great results” in the province. No defence, short of recanting on that thing about leaving his neighbours’ kids to go hungry, would stop the bleeding.

But Moore didn’t take it back. And maybe this will show up in an attack ad some day. And maybe child-poverty activists have made an eternal enemy to be vanquished. But it probably stands to reason that, if they read into Moore’s voting record, those activists have scarier political foes than James Moore. Perhaps they’ll do their research.

UPDATE, 1:50 p.m.: Moore has apologized.

In response to a question from a reporter last week, I made an insensitive comment that I deeply regret. I apologize. Caring for each other is a Canadian ethic that I strongly believe in – always have and always will.  Of course poverty is an issue that concerns me, and concerns all Canadians.  All levels of government, indeed all members of our society, have a responsibility to be compassionate and care for those in need. Great work has been done to tackle poverty and the challenges associated with poverty. And while more work is needed, I know the cause of fighting poverty is not helped by comments like those I made last week. For that, I am sorry. 

The stat
Zero: The number of MPs who voted against motions to eliminate child poverty in 1989 and 2009

The quote
“Is it my job to feed my neighbour’s child? I don’t think so.” —Industry Minister James Moore

 

 

What’s above the fold

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Ottawa Citizen A renowned Ottawa funeral home is suffering internal turmoil.
CBC News The Maritimes are emerging from a heavy winter storm.
CTV News A Montreal crackdown on massage parlours has caused national debate.
National Newswatch James Moore is under fire for comments about child poverty.

 

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Need to know: James Moore gets candid on child poverty

  1. Macleans – May 2012:
    “O’Connor concluded by reaffirming that the Conservative determination not to reopen Canada’s abortion debate is unwavering.”

    We don’t feed children in Canada, we murder them.

    Actually, Mr Moore, I do pay taxes to feed poor children but in reality, my $$$ gets used for other purposes, such as overpaying pols and union bureaucrats to do dire job or transferring billions of $$$ to profitable and unprofitable firms. I would much rather my $$$ went to hungry children than overweight privileged people like MP Moore.

  2. Jason Kenney must be smiling somewhere.

    • Flaherty and Moore, both the subject of on-line news stories and both trending on twitter and not in a positive way. I would say Kenney is beaming.

    • Of course we all know that it’s the responsibility of everyone to feed their neighbours kids………..?

  3. ” Moore engaged in damage control, mostly dismissing that final quote as reported out of context.”

    Here’s the missing context: “Is it my job to feed my neighbour’s child? I don’t think so, because with cheaper data plans that child can use a mobile phone to order her own food. Give a kid breakfast, he eats for that morning. Give a kid cellular competition, and he can order pizza, vegan falafel, or whatever the heck he wants…”

    • Brilliant comment! LOL.

    • This comment was deleted.

      • Can you provide any examples? And what does that have to do with this story?

        • It’s called satire, Lenny… and it’s damn funny!

    • Poor justsayno, that has to be embarrassing.

  4. Sheesh…..a question straight from Genesis….and Cons still can’t answer it. Methinks more than the Lord is going to be wroth over this one.

    • This comment was deleted.

      • Gosh, you mean like the Cons do all the time?

        • This comment was deleted.

          • His remarks are recorded….we know exactly what he said.

            But if he’s going to complain….he hasn’t a moral leg to stand on.

          • This comment was deleted.

          • Then he would be standing in front of EAP ad !

          • Well he’s engaging in another coverup, you figure it out.

      • The whole thing? Like the audio of the entirety of Moore’s comments found at the link?

  5. Are there no poorhouses , no prisons, ?Moore is a toxic piece of gristle !

    • Ask yourself when the last time a child in Canada died of starvation…other than the stupid grandma who starved her grandson to death?

      • Children who are routinely hungry may not starve to death, but there’s a mountain of evidence that demonstrates they perform poorly at school and suffer greatly diminished future employment chances as a result.

        I expect you’ve never known or worked with kids who come from less than ideal homes. They aren’t abstractions you can gloss over over appeals to individual responsibility. They’re children showing up at school malnourished and unable to learn and participate normally.

        It’s one thing to say adults should be responsible for themselves, but it’s astoundingly heartless and willfully blind to suggest that absent of dying, we have no obligation to children.

        • This comment was deleted.

          • Wrong and wrong. Not that it matters. While we’re opining on the obvious, have you gone off any medication lately?

          • This comment was deleted.

          • If any moderators are reading this – is there a way you could kindly usher this gentleman out? I think it’s fair to say he’s combining abuse and irrationality in a generally unhelpful manner.

          • This comment was deleted.

          • Your opinion, or a fact? If fact, please prove.

          • Jack don’t take my word for it, go down to the damn food bank yourself and start asking how much money they make.

          • That we have to rely on food banks at all in what Moore has stated is such a rich country is abuse in itself and the illegitimate Harper government is the biggest abuser of our money we’ve ever had.

          • Funny that there are no homeless people outside of the city. Why would that be?

          • What are you talking about? It’s neither funny nor true.

          • Newsflash! There are no homeless outside the cities. I guess I should have said it was weird, not funny.

        • There is evidence that students should have a good breakfast but why must we feed the whole student body? Because there are children in need the schools set up breakfast programs to nourish those in need. But are the children all needy?? I have worked in these programs and because those in need cannot be singled out then the school provides breakfast for everyone. I know for a fact that 90% of these children are capable and have the means of bringing their yogurt, fruit or sandwich to start off their morning. Why bother? The schools do not have the backbone to provide only for the needy. Everyone shows up for their “free” breakfast. There is no sense of guilt that they are abusing a program and diverting funds from other worthwhile causes. The money that goes into this program and that is matched by the provincial government could certainly be better use than pampering youth that cannot be bothered to wake up, butter a slice of toast or pack a brown bag of something of nutritional value. We now have a full fledged program to feed anyone regardless if their families are the town’s most affluent. Now I ask should I be paying for my neighbor’s children’s breakfast? If he or she needed it I would be more than willing. I have been a volunteer for years but this sort of abuse really bothers me. And what I find even more disgraceful is that the abusers have no sense of shame. I will not contribute to these blanket programs any longer. It is sad that those who need the assistance are being taken advantage of.
          .

          • Would you prefer the “needy” children be herded into a room marked “POOR KIDS ONLY” and then they get brekkie? Maybe the community breakfast is a good way for kids to bond, and a good way for parents to learn that every kid isn’t as fortunate as their kids. Seriously, what kind of a person thinks hungry kids should be shamed before provided a morsel of food? Merry Christmas, Scrooge McMeany.

          • Do you think that the student body doesn’t know who the children are that are in need? You are suggesting that this is more of a bonding issue than kids taking advantage of their community for a free breakfast? I volunteer and donate in this town and I do not think that kids should be shamed. I also don’t think that teaching kids to take the food from those who actually need it is a lesson worth learning. Maybe food could be delivered to the houses of those requiring assistance to avoid the children being stigmatized but there has to be a better way of efficiently help these kids without providing handouts to those who don’t need it. Do you go down to the local food bank for a free meal to bond with the poor people? Do you go to the food bank and take food so that the recipient of someone’s generosity won’t be marked as a poor person only? I thank you for insulting me because I don’t think that the fortunate should take food from the less fortunate. Merry Christmas to you too.

          • My own kids’ school has a donation setup where kids can drop a few bucks in a box if they participate. The school council also contributes. For the school, it tends to be a positive thing to have many kids involved, and it avoids the stigma of having those truly in need stand out. But I won’t deny that some abuse happens. That bothers you more than hungry children?

      • When was the last time you did any gardening ? Put on some CSNY , “Teach your Children “, treasure the laughter of a child . HAND

        • I have a big garden, but keep that hippy music to yourself. Death-metal makes the squash extra tasty.

          • That whole sentence wasn’t making sense until you said hippy music. I’m not looking it up. I try to limit crying myself to sleep to once a week.

          • You may wanna limit your exposure to me then. I am the dream saboteur.

          • Work has you beat on that. I always dream of never ending reports. lol

      • Starvation is not the problem (except in rare instances of criminal behavior), but malnutrition is a huge issue & something which costs us enormously as a society. But then, you know that don’t you.

      • That’s the line? As long as no one actually expires of starvation? Give your head a shake.

    • Just another nut in Harper’s nut-laden CPC fruit cake.

      • The fact remains that Health Canada put 9 new radiation monitors on the west coast but they are not letting us know how bad it really is. If I was a Harper hack would I be so vocal about that? Wouldn’t it be more logical for me to try and cover up that fact?

        • Harper wouldn’t know anything about that, he’s told us over and over again that he knows nothing about everything.

          • You only have to look on Health Canada website to find the answers.

          • For some reason I could not longer reply to you on the thread this comment came from so I’ve moved it here.

            You said:Newsflash! There are no homeless outside the cities. I guess I should have said it was weird, not funny.

            A homeless man just burned to death while sleeping in a covered bus stop in a rural town in Nova Scotia. Why would you make a comment like that?

            http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/homeless-man-dies-in-suspicious-berwick-fire-1.2186481

  6. It isn’t anyone’s job to ensure kids are fed…except the parents. Parents on low income already have governmetn assisstance…but we can’t expect politicians to do more than that. Some parents just make bad choices. Hmm…food for the kids, or a pack of cigs for mom and dad?
    We’ve already seen what happens when beaurocrats get involved in parents choices for kids meals. Anyone else hear the story about the women who was fined $10 because her kids didn’t have a “grain” group in his otherwise very healthy lunch?
    Moore made a policital faux paux….but he was right. It’s up to PARENTS to feed their kids…and we already have programs for assisting those in hardship. Failing that….we always have food banks.
    There is no reason a kid should go hungry in this country…and when they do, it is usually due to bad choices of parents.

    • This comment was deleted.

      • Care to back that up with objective evidence?

        • This comment was deleted.

          • You made the assertion. Back it up or retract it.

          • This comment was deleted.

          • So maybe your voluntary job could be to stand at the food bank with a gun and make sure there’s no one there cheating. Maybe you could have done that for us when the Harper party was cheating to get their 6 figures from us?

          • Yeah, you’ll always get some self-centred idiots who cheat the system no matter how much they make. But they are a small minority of those actually frequenting the food banks (and are essentially stealing resources from those who truly need it).
            So are you saying we should close down the food banks and let those in need go hungry in order to teach your handful of well-off a-holes a lesson in financial mangement?

          • Whoops! Meant to reply to justsayno; not sure how it ended up attached to 4IndependentMPs

          • Thank you Keith for confirming what I already knew but others were too stupid to figure out. I give to the local food bank when the fire dept. comes around looking for donations but that doesn’t stop me from complaining about the abuse. I don’t know what the solution is. All I know is that it’s hard to help people who refuse to help themselves.

          • People that are helping themselves don’t need help.

          • Well, how does that expression go? You are only as good as your friends…

            Nice friends you have, justsayno – ripping off food banks. Nice!

          • They aren’t my friends but that didn’t stop them from telling me about it.

          • This comment was deleted.

          • This comment was deleted.

          • okay then
            tin-foil hat is a tad tight today hey?

          • My tin foil lines that new credit card holder I bought in case google earth trolls are burning around stealing passwords.

          • Are you disputing the fact that food banks are being abused?

          • Sean, do not waste your time on justsayno, he is not interested in facts. I really like those on-line sites that have the ‘ignore’ feature.

          • Do you have proof that the food banks are not being abused?

          • So your solution is what – to close them and take away what little they offer to those genuinely in need because some idiots take advantage?

          • I don’t know what the solution is but I think it’s helpful to know the truth concerning food banks instead of pretending abuse of food banks never happens.

          • Care to point out who said they weren’t ever abused? Try to focus eh!

          • See Sean’s comments.

          • Can’t prove a negative.[ at least not in this case without the resources of RC] So, er, ah…why bother…

      • Your opinion or fact? If fact, please prove.

        • Unlike yourself I’ve actually talked to people who abuse the food banks. The food banks don’t ask how much a person makes so how would the food bank operators know if the people getting groceries just spent their last dime on booze?

    • James, would you seriously look an eight year old kid who is routinely not fed at home and tell him “Suck it up. You were dumb enough to be born to neglectful parents. Aint my problem.”

      Here’s the thing – there will always be some really bad parents out there. Parents with mental health issues, parents who make horrible decisions, parents who are in way over their heads, and parents who should never ever have had kids. If we agree that children are blameless for their birth, then we have two choices. We can sieze them from those families, or we can at least attempt to make sure they get fed.

      Even if you come at this from a position of cold hearted self interest, the small investment in things like school breakfast programs will pay off huge future dividends as at least some of those kids will have an improved chance at performing reasonably in school and building a life where they contribute to society, rather than being supported by it.

      • This comment was deleted.

        • Another dullard heard from. They’re growing like Lemmings.

      • School breakfast programs don’t solve bad parenting and I’ve heard from people running them that the actual ones who need it aren’t necessarily the ones who show up. I’d go along with ‘seizing them from their families’ though, early if possible, once there is neglect or abuse! A forever home that is loving is their best chance. Our band-aid social services enable dysfunctional parents to get by and imprison kids there through our help. (from a non-socialist teacher and we’re around!)

        • I liked your first sentence because it’s true. Not really into socialists stealing kids though.

          • I’d like to know what your solutions are to all the cheating, people having kids when they aren’t capable? How would you like that managed?

          • A world wide birth stop?

          • I wondered if you favoured a China type of solution. Forcing people to act a certain way or live a certain way by threatening them with prison if they don’t. You realize that is the only way to control something like that don’t you? I agree that there is an overpopulated planet, I can even agree there are many irresponsible people living on the planet, most in the greedy parts, but if we want to have a democracy, freedom in our lives education is the answer and children that are fed learn better.

          • Well I just threw it out there because at some point in time something will have to be done. When it gets to the point that there is not enough food to go around and people truly are starving to death and committing mass suicides…birth stop laws may not look so bad. How about a 7 year birth stop following by a 1 year period of fertility followed by another 7 year birth stop? It scares the bejesus out of me to think that we could lose our freedom just like China but man we have got to do something. When it gets to the point that our children and our children’s children have to fight each other for food, no one will give a crap about education.

          • We are a completely unsustainable civilization the way we are living. We cannot take more than we can return and keep living on this planet. If we are going to force people to do anything why not start with everyone in the developed world to live on $48 a day the way the people in Bangladesh making our clothing do? They survive on that so maybe we need to look at a solution more like that?

          • It’s too late. You’ve already spawned.

        • Who said they would solve bad parenting? They do, in some cases, allow some hungry children to be not hungry.

          I know I threw the “seizing kids” thing out there, but pragmatically it’s just not possible. Situations of “soft neglect” are difficult to judge, and I think it’s often true that kids are better off with less than ideal parents, as opposed to state guardianship.

          As for the imperfection of any program (not all kids who need the food might get it), I don’t see what that means a program ought to be discarded outright, or that we can’t consider other options to acheive the goal of feeding hungry kids.

          • Currently all parents with children under 6 receive $100 a month. Maybe make it a $200 credit and extend it to the age at which kids can start cooking for themselves.

          • That programme is a joke. At the least it should be targeted properly and made a refundable tax credit similar to the existing child tax credit. You are aware there are families with 5 and 6 figure incomes that get to keep that credit?

            Another one of Harper’s populous vote buying gimmicks.

          • Actually it’s not a joke, there are many families that rely on that $100 bucks a month. Making it a refundable tax credit would only help those families that are above poverty level and not give ANY refund to those below poverty level. But I agree with you that there should be no cheques given to combined income over $100,000.

          • Tax stuff is a mystery to me generally. But I’m pretty sure you got that exactly backasswards.

          • kcm2…..based on your postings….I’d say that almost anything to do with economics and finance is a mystery to you.

            That however, doesn’t seem to stop you from having your own ideas about how the Government should run the country.

            I would suggest you become informed about basic economics. You may still hate Harper and conservatives……but at least you would begin to understand what they are trying to do. Once you have grasped that….you’ll realize tha much of what you say is quite incorrect.

          • Dear, dear James that was what they call sarcasm. But from you i take that as a compliment. t’s true my grasp of things economic is fairly rudimentary, but nevertheless , I’ve taught myself to think. That requires an open ,willing mind. I sincerely hope you get one in your stocking this Christmas; your old one seems shockingly rigid and inflexible.

          • A refundable tax credit is clawed back from those with too high an income. It could only be clawed back from those on social assistance IF the tax law was poorly written & the Feds didn’t bother to get other jurisdictions on board.

          • So….you are saying that people with a 5 figure income shouldn’t be allowed to keep the child tax credit?
            $10,000 is a five figure salary…..and it is well below minimum wage, and far less than most welfare recipients receive.
            Methinks you have trouble with your ideas of financial security.

          • Very droll. Good one, but i think even you get my point.

          • get your point insofar as the accuracy of a previous post you made. You really are being honest when you admit that you lack an even basic grasp of economics.

            Don’t worry too much about it though……every single person who supports the NDP is in the same boat.

            It’s too bad the rest of us have to keep them afloat.

          • I’m not ndp either. Some how i doubt see you and i sharing any boat that isn’t of some considerable size.

        • We have been there, done that. From the home kids to 60′s scoop and onward. There’s never a guarantee that foster parents will fill the void or in some cases not simply be worse.There are of course always the cases where intervention is absolutely necessary. But too often we do it for the worst of reasons, and on the cheap. And once we grant ourselves the power to act in a corporate manner, we often fail to discriminate adequately.

      • “the small investment in things like school breakfast programs will pay off huge future dividends”

        I don’t think so. Firstly, most kids have parents that feed them breakfast. So it’s not all that efficient to feed the 0.00001% of kids who don’t by spending money on breakfast for the other 99.99999%. There are much more effective ways of helping the needy.

        You completely ignore opportunity cost. That is the cost of paying for millions of breakfasts when almost all are not wanted or needed, when that money could have been put towards better use. Socialist policies do not automatically benefit society, in fact history has shown the opposite, most socialist policies are a burden on society.

      • Sean. we elect a Government to look after the BIG issues…….and while it may seem a big issue to the hungry kid whether he is fed or not, it is NOT the Government’s job to ensure the child is fed….that is up to the parents.
        We simply cannot expect (nor want) Government to monitor our families that closely or interfere. It is impossible for a Fed poltician to micro-manage on that level, but the Provinical Governments have that role in any event.
        The feds duty is to ensure policies that do not bankrupt families so that they DO have the resources to feed their kids. And lets face it…..the majority of kids who go without meals do so mainly because of the choices their parents make.
        The simple fact is that what Moore said was true. It is NOT his job to go from house to house to ensure parents are feeding their kids. That is simply an impossibility. Tell me this Sean…..do you routinely go to your neighbours kids to ask if they have had enough to eat?
        If not….how do you expect Moore to do it?
        It’s very easy to ask if I can look into the eyes of an 8 year old child….yadda…yadda…yadda…..but the truth is, you have not done so yourself. You are trying to prove your progressive credentials with your posting, but like most progressive ideas….they sound good in theory, but don’t work in reality. Moore was just honest in his comments, and that provides fodder for the left. He’s apologized for sounding cold hearted, but what he said just happens to be true.
        That’s what really ticks folks off. They know he is being honest in his assessment.

        • How come everyone thinks they know what experiences I have and have not had? While I lay no claim to extensive experience, and not that it really matters. the fact of the matter is I have worked with kids from pretty crappy home situations in a few volunteer positions I’ve held. You can treat these kids as abstract pawns in your broader philsophical argument if you like. I prefer to check my political views against the reality of human lives – in this case real kids that aren’t being fed properly.

          Moore was making a broad philosophical point, not arguing that he personally should go around feeding kids. It’s semantic and disingenuous to suggest otherwise.

          I’m not really much of a progressive, but I suppose I do share with them the idea that even if a kid’s parents are useless a-holes, we still have an obligation to try and help.

          Calling what Moore said “truth” may make you feel like you’ve somehow established a superior argument, but it seems to me anyone can around calling their perspective “the truth” and it’s little more than self-serviing words.

          • And Moore’s philosophical point was correct. It is not the JOB of the state…to ensure parents feed their kids. It is the parents job to do that.
            And parents can do that job more easily when the Government allows them to keep more of their own money, or if they don’t have any means of income, to assist where required. But again, providing a welfare cheque or other means of assistance is as far as the Feds can go. If a school notices a kid is routinely underfed, then there is Children’s Aid to take the appropriate action.
            As for my perspective being the “truth” sorry….it’s not just my perspective, it’s the law.
            We don’t have a law stating the Government must monitor everyone’s kids to ensure they are being fed.
            As for you working with kids from crappy homes….good for you. Get that out there for everyone to see. Now…what made these “crappy homes” in the first place. Was it politicians not looking after someone’s kids….or was it the kids own parents who were responsible for the “crap-ish-ness” of the homes?

    • Unbelievably mean spirited comment. How do you manage to look into the mirror in the morning. It must really suck. What the hell is happening to this once great country?

      • It’s still a Great country……and we are trying to ensure we don’t bankrupt it by enacting poorly thought out social policies that are unaffordable. If you want an PRIME example of what socialist policies do…..see DETROIT.
        As for being mean spirited……you are completly wrong. Mean spiritied would be promising this generation everything they ask for, even though we can’t afford it…..and sticking our kids with the bill.

        • Read my lips – Your comments are incredibly mean spirited!

          How the hell do kids get to pick and choose their parents for God’s sake? There are lots of kids who are not looked after by their parents and who are unable to look after themselves. Read your post again and give your head a shake.

          And if indeed you are from Halifax then you should be doubly ashamed because Haligonians are the kindest most caring people in this country – so I suspect that you are a transplant from the West or Toronto.

    • Please write to your Conservative MPs and encourage more of them to speak up and tell “the truth”.

    • If anyone else other than a MP had said it I would be right with you. But their job is to decide how to spend our money and prioritise needs. How many millions are being spent on EAP ads, PR flacks in the PMO and associated offices and even gold embossed business cards? That is not a good use of our money, but ensuring kids have at least one good meal a day is.

      Also as a government minister, Moore is responsible for social policy in our country so it is his job to either fund a programme, create a law or ensure that existing regulations are adhered to.

      He is duty bound to address any persistent social problems, that’s why he and the other trained seals were elected. If he doesn’t want to govern, maybe he should resign from government, but then what would he do without his welfare ticket?

      • You aren’t even a Canadian citizen so what right do you have to tell us anything?

        • err okay then
          so that thing I have that the government gave me called a passport isn’t real and that exam I took meant nothing.
          Aw shucks

    • Wait.. are you seriously making the beer and popcorn argument to defend a Conservative blunder?

      Damn.. now that’s funny.

  7. I don’t know what James Moore really thinks, and don’t think this is the Conservatives actual policy position on poverty, although I worry once they say it will become so. He/they might have a more considered view if it came time to make an actual decision on policy that affected child poverty.

    The problem is when government leaders, in this government more than many, so often cling to their first reflex until it becomes policy, instead of looking at comparisons of various policy instruments, weighing the benefits and risks and then deciding on a position that is responsible but also fits with their political philosophy.

    • Looking at facts and acting accordingly?? Not a strong point of the Harper government.

      • First you got to manufacture the facts you like…that takes time and energy. And lots of donations from the party core.

        • This is what I get for trying to take the high road! ;-)

      • Right on! We don’t want actual facts and evidence entered into the discussion. No, what we really want is bland statements like “Looking at facts and acting accordingly?? Not a strong point of the Harper government”. No, that’s so much better than looking at the the actual
        facts
        . Like a 25% reduction in child poverty to levels never achieved by Liberal governments. Oops, sorry, I let a fact slip out there.

    • Because obviously what they’re doing isn’t working, having reduced poverty despite the great recession to levels that Liberal governments never achieved. That”s obviously a bad thing, because it wasn’t liberals that did it with their superior policies.

      We can’t inject any evidence into this discussion. We can only make bland statements like “when government leaders, in this government more than many, so often
      cling to their first reflex until it becomes policy, instead of looking
      at comparisons of various policy instruments”
      . We can’t actually look at results – no sirree! Because evidence-based policy must never be ruined by real evidence, as in things like the actual poverty rates.

      • Census, Rights and Democracy, Kairos, ELA, In Site, climate change …

        • What is that? Are you choosing random words out of the dictionary?

          • Examples of when the Conservatives have acted on their first and worst inclinations, without full consideration of policy research and advice.

          • Oh really? Shooting heroin is a good policy decision? Making an unnecessary long form census voluntary is a bad one? Shaking up a useless money-pit is bad policy? Most likely all were good policy decisions – you appear to be confused. A couple of those, I have no idea what they are (and neither does anyone else, proving how they must have been a waste of money).

          • In all of these examples the Conservatives made decisions, including a more expensive option in the case of the Census, without regard for internal or external policy advice. They painted themselves into a corner by making up their minds first and then went ahead regardless of the implications.

          • They had plenty of advice and they made the right calls.

  8. Well politically speaking Moore just took himself out of the running for party leader….aka ‘another one bites the dust’ …with his Tiny Tim Manoeuver.

  9. Moore’s children eagerly anticipate his annual holiday retelling of A Christmas Carol, or as he calls it: “Tiny Tim: Socialist Freeloader.”

    • Rofo will do a guest appearance as the toxic gravy .

    • And now a new chapter with an exciting ending …provincial responsibility. [ although evidence of that's to come in the new charter after '15]

    • You make the classic mistake of confusing charity (voluntary) with socialism (involuntary).

      • Yer right. I am that stupid, and in no way was trying for a bit of humour.

        • I thought so.

          Because there’s no way that comment could be considered funny.

          As Paul Wells said recently in a comment, it’s tough being a comedian.

          Next time you tell a joke, say something funny. Throwing creative insults at politicians is not funny, at the end of the day it’s just another insult. Inserting a politician into any fairy tale is not funny, whether it’s Trudeau smoking pot with Hansel and Gretel or whatnot.

          • Dude, I sometimes enjoy banter with you, but there are times you become little more than a ball of anger. I thought you’d relaxed a bit of late, but I guess you’ve defaulted back to a one dimensional Randian parody of snark and bitterness. Which is a shame. I don’t dismiss your views as a matter of rote, but it’s awfully hard to take you seriously when you get this way.

          • Really? because “Yer right. I am that stupid, and in no way was trying for a bit of humour.”, that was such a cheery comment! It was friendly banter! It was exactly what Miss Manners would recommend. Sorry, I was mistaken, I mistook it for something else, dude, the ball of rage that I am. I’m ready to explode. Watch out. Kaboom.

          • Perhaps he needs a Snickers bar.

  10. Why yes, yes it is my job to feed my neighbour’s kid IF THEY’RE HUNGRY AND HAVE NOTHING TO EAT.

    My wife and I gave $100 to our school’s wee hot breakfast program (run by a couple of mums on the qt….mustn’t anger the union….). It’s not much (things are a bit tight this Xmas) but damn it felt good doing it.

    • You’ve hit the nail on the head. We can sit around and debate long term outcomes, individual accountability, potential abuses of social assistance, etc., as much as we want. But a hungry kid is a hungry kid, dammit. It’s appalling that one’s default reaction could be anything but yours.

      • Sean, kids are always hungry. Apparently you don’t have teenagers.

        • You really ought to change your handle to something like – just asummin’

          • The funny thing is, every assumption he’s made about me has been wrong.

          • Hardly a surprise though.

          • Or “justass” for short.

      • Well, there ya go! Why stop with your neighbour? Head off to Africa, head off to Canada’s First nations reserves, head to Haiti, and save the world with free breakfasts! Many have tried it but I’m sure you’ll be the first to succeed in eliminating poverty by handing out free stuff. After so many tries, I’m sure it will work the next time. Free stuff is the way to go! Poverty begone!

        The difference between a liberal and a conservative is that the latter is acquainted with reality, the latter goes for policies that actually work. The former taxes the neighbours to the left to give free breakfasts to the neighbours on the right, then alternates the next day.

        • You’re absolutley right. Because poverty cannot be eliminated, and because every child cannot be guaranteed a decent start in life, then there’s no point in doing anything.

          I’m less liberal than you think. But I do believe that an affluent society like our own should attempt to create a world where the fact of a child’s birth does not condemn them to severly limited life chances. Funny thing is, conservatives used to believe that too.

          There’s actually a heck of a lot of data supporting school breakfast programs (yes, I can provide links, but I know you’re fully capable of looking it up). But even then, I’m not so arrogant as to go about claiming that my views are “reality”.

          • Conservatives love charity. That’s what they like to call “doing something”. They also like to volunteer, also known as “doing something”.
            Maybe there’s data supporting school breakfast programs, but I’ve certainly never seen any that stood up to any real scrutiny like opportunity cost.
            Programs like welfare or EI are one thing, but when you actually start spending taxes on stuff like breakfast because you think the recipients are too lazy or stupid to spend it wisely themselves, to me that’s always a step too far. At that point, we might as well all be in diapers while we eat our government breakfast.

          • ” create a world where the fact of a child’s birth does not condemn them to severly limited life chances”

            Yes, the chance to eat breakfast.

            As opposed to giving money for the child to spend it on what he/she needs the most. Or taking the money used to buy breakfast for all the other kids who already ate breakfast, and giving that money to the child as well, for something other than breakfast.

            No, giving him that breakfast is the real way to expand his chances.

  11. I`m not sure what rock Moore has been under but he should know that:
    It`s the job of all pragmatic politicians to announce at least twice a year that they fervently wish to eliminate child poverty.
    it`s then the politicians job to talk about the harm that child poverty does to the future of the country, and how much he wants to help poor children.
    It`s then the politicians job to talk some more preferably in the presence of self-serving proponents of a welfare state.
    The politician should talk some more to sympathetic media who will also talk some and encourage their friendly followers to talk some more too.
    Talk is great. We`ve been talking for years about child poverty and hunger and we all feel real good about that.
    If there has not been an improvement in the lives of our children over the years, it`s not because of poor-choices made by neglectful parents. It`s not because we forgot that it takes a village to raise a child. It`s certainly not because of the fervent wishes of sincere politicians and sympathetic media and commenters.
    It`s because we haven`t talked about it enough.

    • Yes, because what Moore was really saying is that we need to stop simply talking about child poverty and hunger and to action to make sure children get enough to eat.

    • Too true Mr Sarcasm. The job of the politician does seem superfluous the way you put it.

      What exactly did Moore do, other then talk some more? Is there a solution in there, once we have acknowledged the problem is neglectful parents or even failure of the community to act? I think not!

      What moore can you do?!?!

      Might nicely summarize your respective positions.

      Quite a lot actually.

      • “What moore can you do?!?!” You’ve got a whole room full of these, ready to use, don’t you? LOL

        • Lucky for him he wasn’t named James the less. Or have a bummer of a first name like – [j] gimme[y]Moore

      • LOL, I was thinking about hungry little Oliver Twist saying, “Please, sir, may I have some moore?” GREAT MINDS, kcm2…

        • Idle minds in my case i’m afraid.

  12. How do you ensure every child gets a full balanced diet every day? School meal programs, three squares a day? Not exactly viable. The sad fact is there will always be parents that are useless dolts. And short of neutering them, how do you end that ongoing cycle? Some people are education-immune.

    • The sad fact is that there will always be parents living below the poverty line & trying to juggle keeping the lights on, a roof over their heads & food on the table. Sometimes when the rent is due, keeping the roof over the head is more important than putting food on the table that week. Those are the tough choices too many parents live with – doesn’t make them “useless dolts”.

      • You’re absolutely right. But those aren’t the ones I’m talking about. I’ve seen, and I’m sure most others have seen, those precise dolts about which I’m talking. The father for instance, that goes out and buys mags for his truck with the money that was supposed to buy food. The mother that takes the same money to go out for a night at the slots. They exist, and in greater numbers than anybody would like to admit.

        • I have yet to see any credible stats as to how many parents spend money frivolously which should go to food, but I know it’s a tiny percentile. There will always be not great parents, but our goal as a society should be to make sure their kids don’t fall through the cracks & grow up to continue the cycle.

  13. We provide the conditions for poor people to go out and get good jobs. If deadbeat mums and dads can’t be bothered to send their kids off to school with a good breakfast that isn’t my, er our, er, the federal govt’s problem. The kids just have to live with the consequences i guess – unless thier provincial govt chooses to step up…that’s their call, not mine, er, ours, er, this govts. “Are there no Soup kitchens? Are there no charities?…”…Is there no charity?

    Howzat for context Mr Moore?

    Well James you don’t look like you ever went without. Feel like donating a couple a pounds?

  14. Moore worships at the altar of the failed god of market ideology – like all acolytes, his mantra is that the market is value-free and acts an invisible hand which allocates resources as they should be distributed: sans ethical or environmental concerns.
    I am sure Moore is not opposed to occasional donations to help the “less fortunate” but to envision a society without food banks and more means tests is beyond his ken,
    To even acknowledge the existence of Nordic social democracies in which there are no food banks, there is free post-secondary education and systematic provision of lifelong learning opportunities would be betray his assumptions that “there are no alternatives” to the current order.
    Sadly, he and the most vulnerable who he shuns or dismisses are equally victims of a mean-spirited , false ideology that must be maintained to justify ever-present injustice and inequality.

  15. Left to their own devices and too long in government the true agenda shows itself one opened-mouthed fool at a time. Why are we feeding James Moore and his family?

  16. It seems to me it’s the buck passing that’s truly egregious here. JM didn’t of course say children should go without, the guy isn’t a monster.But in saying it’s always someone elses responsibility if the parents fall down on the job he’s doing just that. It’s true it doesn’t have to be the federal govts; but just what is that level of govt for then when people fall through the cracks, as they undoubtedly always will, regardless of who is in the big seat? If it is always someones elses job, it is no ones job…
    The thing that really convinced me of this was watching kids come to school on a remote bc reserve. Plenty of kids came hungry cuz parents were too f**cked up to give them a good breakfast, or lunch or supper.[ no jobs there either] The school helped out, but in the main it was simply unthinkable in that community that a grandparent, uncle, aunt a sister didn’t make sure those kids have something to eat and somewhere to go if they had to. It is in their dna.’Ah, not gummints role’, Mr moore says! ‘And if there are no jobs they should just move away!’
    Yes, ideally all communities would function this way. But in our cities in particular they don’t. Most of us are strangers to each other. We pay our taxes with the expectation the govt will at least try and fill the gap, some way or other. Helping you find a good job is merely one of them…it isn’t a zero sum game Mr Moore. There’s a larger cost to be paid if a child falls through the cracks, beyond the personal tragedy. We will pay one way or another. Have a good Christmas minister and be a man, apologize and think on.

  17. Mr.Moore, Mr.Ford- thank you for the apologies.

  18. It’s astounding how much more eloquent Mr. Moore is with the written word (see his apology above) than when he speaks. Why, it’s almost as though someone else wrote it. But if my neighbour’s MP is incapable of drafting a coherent apology, is it someone else’s job to write it for him? I don’t think so.

    • I think the clue that it was him, rather then the pmo, is the total absence of any dig at Trudeau.
      Sounds like Harper threatened to limit his intake of CoW in any case.
      At least he manned up.

  19. James Moore just had his “why should I sell your wheat?” moment. Tories like to pull that one out from time to time and it was 44 years ago.

    • REcall that Trudeau went on to explain the advantages of selling their wheat.

  20. Does this mean he’ll also apologize for his accusations that the media was lying and taking him out of context?

  21. “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For
    I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

    “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

    “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the
    least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’” (Matthew 25:31-40)

    That, Mr. Moore, is the correct answer to the question “Is it my job to feed my neighbour’s child?”

  22. Like a human punch line, Moore ran straight smack dab into that old joke…is this[ child poverty] a provincial or federal responsibility? Only in Canada eh…sigh

  23. The only way to end child poverty is the same way we’ve waged the war on tobacco. Children are only in poverty because they’re parents have made bad choices. Period.
    Unless we’re prepared to teach children from middle school on that having children entails certain obligations, mostly financial. If we can badger people into believing that tobacco is a greater social ill than, say, marijuana, then we can apply the same effort at educating young people on the lasting social ills of pre-marital parenthood (Spare me- a baby born to an unwed mother has a dramatically higher chance of being raised in poverty. If you don’t know that, you’re just stupid.). We can educate them as to the problems related to becoming a parent before achieving a certain level of job stability, or income. We can teach them the importance of staying married. Divorce is major driver of child poverty stats. We can teach the simple concept of not making babies you can’t afford. Do all those things with the same veracity that we’ve used against tobacco and “child poverty” will almost disappear a lot quicker than taking money from one set of parents and giving it to another.
    Unfortunately, that would require teaching “values” to our children, which is anathema to the left. Far better to confiscate wealth from some people, filter it through a bunch of bureaucrats whose children will want for naught, and funnel the few percent left over to the so-called poor.

    • Absolutely, Bill. You only need to look to US red states to see how effective preaching family values is.

      Together we can Alabamize this country.

      • Actually, until he got to that last bit, he was pretty on point.

        The problem was assuming that this teaching has anything to do with “values”, as opposed to teaching common sense. The problem in red states is not that they’re teaching family values, but that they refuse to acknowledge anything outside of those family values.

        You can’t just preach abstinence, because kids simply won’t listen. On the other hand, if you preach “lifelong commitment, no more hanging out with friends in the evening, no more extra cash for fashionable clothes, no more sleeping in, etc” and couple that with *smart* sex, rather than none, and you’re likely to see some success.

        • Something related: I recently was compelled by the government to submit to an income tax audit in order to assure them that I was paying the requisite amount of tax to support the social programs I am philosophically opposed to. That cost me about $600 dollars in paperwork, plus the time lost when they demanded that I itemize my receipts and submit them in the manner they saw fit. This allowed the English as a second language auditor to randomly disallow legitimate expenses (not withstanding the irony of a refugee from a totalitarian regime choosing to work for the confiscatory arm of the country that has welcomed her and provided her with freedoms and opportunities wholly foreign to her place of birth) on the basis that her limited English language skills did not allow her to grasp the nature of my employment. The bottom line being that an additional $900 dollars of income taxes needs to be paid on top of the $60-70K in taxes already paid over a three year period. If I was willing to spend $500-600, and another 20-30 hours of my time, I could whittle that $900 down to half that. Ain’t happenin’.
          The bottom line is this: If any level of government is going to have the right to crawl up my financial butt in order to ensure that I’mm paying my fair share, then we should at least expect that those who choose to receive govt. assistance be held t0o the same standards as those of us required to provide the funding for said assistance. Fair ’nuff?

      • So, confiscating MY money, that I earn for MY family, so that people who refuse to make good choices can have more money to NOT spend on food for their children will eradicate child poverty how?
        “Child poverty” is just another word for irresponsible parenting. What would motivate people to be more responsible and make better choices if they are secure in the knowledge that big brother will always provide, to the detriment of the liberty of those who choose to be more responsible?
        When you take away the consequences for poor choices, then there is no upside to being hardworking, diligent, and responsible.
        Ask yourself this question: Why would we donate food to the Food Banks, for example, instead of money, which would make food banks infinitely more efficient? After all, if you eliminated the need for food banks to warehouse vast amounts of food ( a major cost) and utilize large numbers of volunteers (along with a few paid employees), and reduce the costs associated with shipping various food items in various directions, by simply handing out cash to those who utilize food banks, you could eradicate a lot more hunger for far fewer dollars. Why not?
        The answer, you see, is also the answer to child poverty. It’s because the adults in the child poverty question are also the adults in the food banks, and apparently you can’t trust them with money. Right?
        Why should I expect them to be more responsible with my money than they are with their own?

        • Oh christ. Another one who doesn’t understand economies of scale.

          The answer to your question happens when you understand that a food bank with $500 can buy a hell of a lot more food than 10 people with $50 each can.

          • A: Food banks don’t ask for cash donations. They ask for food purchased at regular store prices be donated.
            B: Even if they did ask for cash, their buying power is not the same as the grocery store’s. Thus the food banks, even if they were getting steep discounts by purchasing in bulk, negate their savings by carrying an extra warehousing cost that would not be associated with simply giving cash to food bank customers.

          • Good lord. You are so ignorant it is stunning.

            Here’s a hint, chucklehead:
            http://www.calgaryfoodbank.com/would-you-raise-food-andor-funds-calgary-food-bank-0
            Here’s another:
            http://www.calgaryfoodbank.com/consider-giving-money
            And another:
            http://www.foodbanksbc.com/get-involved/donate/
            And another:
            http://saskatoonfoodbank.org/donate-online/
            And another:
            http://winnipegharvest.org/donate-money/
            And another:
            http://www.banquesalimentaires.org/304-don–campid-10
            And another:
            http://www.oafb.ca/donate-now
            ..get the hint yet?

            B: Seriously? How about you take a look at the last link posted. Because I seriously doubt you have the mental capacity to manage that, I’ll quote the relevant bit for you from it: “For every dollar donated, the OAFB is able to acquire and distribute $8 worth of food for hungry Ontarians across the province. This means that your donation today, no matter what size, will have a huge impact in hunger reduction in our province.”

            And that’s even without considering that while grocery stores can get the food for cheaper than the foodbanks (any idea why? Here’s a hint.. it has to do with economies of scale again), grocery stores aren’t in the habit of *GIVING IT AWAY* — or even selling it at cost. If they were, you might have some sort of point about how their economics compare.

            As it is, however, you’re not only incredibly ignorant, but pointless as well.

          • How are they able to distribute $8 worth of food for every dollar donated? Simple. The cash donations are to cover the cost of warehousing and distribution. Every link you provided also mentions food donations, which is the lifeblood of food banks.
            Food banks are most specifically NOT in the business of purchasing food and redistributing it.
            Again, I point out the gross inefficiency of taking food and cash donations and then using the cash donated to pay for warehousing and distribution. There’s a reason why food banks don’t just collect cash donations, operate out of a very small and less costly facility, and distribute cash instead of groceries. It’s not done that way because it’s very politically incorrect to think about why a lot of people use food banks.
            Food banks would pretty much go out of business if they at least had the audacity to expect that those who use their services submit to drug and alcohol testing, swear off tobacco use, and stay out of the bingo hall at least for the duration of their need for assistance.
            I’ve been to the food bank. I noted an abundance of tattoos, a great deal of pet food (Pet food!? If you can’t feed your kids why are you feeding a dog?), no shortage of smokers (Again, you have to ask, how can you afford cigs if you can’t afford food?), and a significant number of the vehicles of the food bank patrons were more expensive than what I drive.
            Things that all make you go hmmmm….

    • Hormones will trump education EVERY TIME. Rationale FAIL.

  24. I am glad that Conservatives like Mr. Moore are comfortable speaking out on their beliefs. I am also glad that the Cons supporters are happy to expound on their beliefs. This will all add up to a change in govt.

  25. Perhaps they gan go down to Insite. I hear there are free snacks available. Oh, wait, that’s free smack. Never mind!

    • Nope. No free “smack” at Insite.

      • That’s outrageous! Good thing there is a handy kiosk around the corner!

        • Outrageous that you’re so misinformed?
          Sadly, it doesn’t make you at all unusual.

          • Missinformed about the shithole called the Lower East Side? Hardly!

          • The lower east side is in manhattan

    • Don’t let the truth get in the way.

      • Nope, can’t let that happen. Oops! I let a fact slip out there… like a 25% reduction in child poverty to levels never achieved by Liberal governments. Oops! I did it again! Another fact! Can’t have that!

  26. James Moore’s words are perfect examples of some one who uses our system 1 thinking process. It is narcissistic. My DNA is vital. My empathy is for those I know. A habitual system 1 thinker is bad for dealing with the complexity of Industry. Especially as the behavioural economist Daniel Kahneman tells us we all need to be system 2 thinkers. We all can change. But we have to want to change. It is risky for conservatism, especially Christian conservatism, to develop the system 2 thinking habit. System 2 is hard on God and encourages liberalism. Ref “Thinking, Fast and Slow”

  27. Well, this thread obviously brought out the best and worst in human nature. Thanks, justsayno! One thing’s sure: Awesome mashups of Harper saying “I could care less” with the odd, impolitic utterances of the rest of the gang! Moore, Sorenson, Ritz, etc. 2015 gonna be funny.

  28. Once again the media has shown us why Harper likes to keep a tight lid on things.

    Moore says something totally reasonable, and next thing you know the media has forced him to grovel.

    • No, Moore said something totally ignorant, insensitive & callous – the media reported it & PUBLIC OUTRAGE has forced him to apologize.

  29. The ugly underbelly of the Conservative Party rears its repulsive face to the world, and the world shudders when the monster reveals itself at Christmas. Scrooge himself would be envious of this Creepy Conservative Lurker. James Moore totally creeps me out, I was only severely repulsed by Harper, but this is a new and uglier Harper Government now that they have their precious “Majority Government”.

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