Perth-Wellington People’s Party of Canada (PPC) candidate, Wayne Baker, took time out of his campaign schedule on Aug. 19 to give his thoughts to the Listowel Banner on some of the issues facing voters in the 2021 federal election.
LB: The pandemic is still top of mind for most voters. What are your thoughts on mandatory vaccinations?
Baker: My thoughts are our bodies are our own to control. I have an issue with mandatory vaccinations. I have an issue with that imposition on our rights and our freedoms. It’s our constitutional right. Number one, our health care is our private business. It is not our employers’ business to know whether we are vaccinated or not. It is not anyone else’s business other than between us and our medical practitioner. That’s where it ends and that’s a serious infringement on our constitutional rights. That’s a major issue with us and that’s where I’ll stand.
LB: Agriculture is a huge part of life in Perth-Wellington and some say it is being affected adversely by climate change. Any thoughts on actions that can be taken to deal with the effects of a changing climate that can create erratic conditions for farmers?
Baker: First off, I don’t know about the Canada you live in but the Canada I live in, the climate changes about every three months. So how are we defining climate change? I meant there is an arbitrary group of people that seem to think that climate change is a major issue. What they are using is carbon dioxide as a gas that is changing our climate. Without carbon dioxide, we wouldn’t be sitting in the shade of this tree right here. These trees depend on carbon dioxide to survive so in terms of fossil fuels, at one point in our earth’s history all the carbon that we’re pulling out of the ground was actually in our atmosphere so I don’t totally buy into the carbon issues as much as others. I believe that in Canada with our existing technology and our existing state of capacity the carbon tax is nothing more than a cruelty tax. As far as farmers are concerned they haven’t addressed me with issues around climate change. I’ve been addressed with issues around government control. There are far more issues concerning farmers regarding government control than there are issues of climate change in Perth-Wellington.
LB: Mental health issues are prevalent this year due to the pandemic. Farmers are one group that has been dealing with mental health issues, even before the pandemic; a local study conducted by the University of Guelph recently found women under 40 are being hit especially hard by poor mental health. How will your party deal with mental health issues?
Baker: Real simple answer – get rid of the lockdowns. Get rid of them. They are not necessary. They didn’t work the first time around. All they are doing is they are reinforcing oppressive government control… Let people do what people do. Let them congregate. Let them get together. Let them help each other.
LB: When it comes to health care, people have raised concerns because Canada had to look internationally for help with vaccines during the pandemic.What are your thoughts on this and how can Canada be better prepared next time?
Baker: OK, let’s make sure we understand certain clarities here. The federal government finances health care but we don’t dictate the outcome to the provinces of how to handle health care. I believe we need to have robust research and development in our country. I think that’s what keeps us at the forefront internationally is our robust research and development. I think that we need to listen to the experts and not listen to the rhetoric especially when it comes to the COVID dialogue, it seems that a lot of rhetoric out there seems to be one dialogue with regards to consent with COVID and that is the vaccine. Be vaccinated or be ostracized. There are other options. There are other alternatives. As an example, it is common knowledge that anyone who lives over the 35th parallel which encompasses all of Canada is, without supplementation, vitamin D deficient through the winter. Vitamin D is critical for our immune systems. I find it interesting that our initial wave hit right when we were most deficient for vitamin D so why was the government, if it was altruistic and truly interested in our well-being, why was the government not promoting taking vitamin D supplements? Yes, I bought into the first lockdown. Yes, that seemed to make sense at the time but these lockdowns have gone from necessity to political. When they switched to political that’s when I stood up and said I can’t tolerate this anymore. Back in May of 2020 I wrote a letter to the editor, unfortunately, they didn’t publish it but basically, my stand was since March we’ve been living in a traumatic society. This SARS has introduced a high degree of trauma into our society. The problem is that our society is using that trauma as a means to push a more totalitarian or more dictatorial type of agenda. At that point, my attitude was if I have a choice between living under a totalitarian regime without SARS or SARS and a more benevolent government, a more benevolent system, I’ll take my chances with SARS because the opposite outcome is very, very ugly.
LB: What does your party plan to do to make housing affordable again especially considering wages are not going up at the rate they once were in comparison to housing?
Baker: You’re asking me provincial issues – housing has been something at my heart for a long time. I sold real estate for several years and housing has always been something that I see as a very serious issue, not only in Perth-Wellington but in Ontario as a whole, and there are a couple of things that we need to start pushing forwards. Do you know how the rhetoric is affordable housing? That’s the wrong thing to be pushing. Affordable housing is not what we should be pushing as a country and as a province. What we should be pushing is affordable homeownership. That is not happening. I think that there is some, I’m going to try to be diplomatic here, maybe you can massage my words a little bit for me, but there are some very selfish individuals that have control over our supply in this province and they are putting the screws to the supply and forcing price up. If we look at Canada as a nation, we’re one of the most sparsely- populated countries on the face of this planet. To deal with housing prices like what we’ve been dealing with, it’s inexcusable. There is no excuse for it. Now should we be developing prime agricultural land for housing? Absolutely not. What we need to be focusing on is developing techniques and building housing on marginal and less productive land. There is lots of it out there. Even if we redefine our distribution networks so that we start developing more into the Canadian Shield. That’s where we need to develop technology and we need to develop a desire to go towards a more sustainable form of homeownership.
LB: Rural broadband remains a major issue for many within Perth-Wellington. How do you see that being dealt with if your party is elected?
Baker: Frankly, we’re about freedom – free enterprise. What we would be looking for is innovative people. Elon Musk is addressing that worldwide. We would be looking for people who are innovative enough to come up with ideas and we would be encouraging and staying out of the way of people who would be innovative enough to come up with ideas who would help to address that issue. It is an issue. I live in rural Wellington. A couple of years ago my provider couldn’t provide me with the internet because the trees would be covered in leaves and the leaves would stop the radio waves from going through. I was basically out of business for two months of the year when the trees were in full foliage. So yes, I know the issues.
LB: How will your party help people who have been hit hard financially by the pandemic? Some examples are small business owners, people who work in arts and entertainment and the tourism industry?
Baker: Let me try to be diplomatic here. Relief comes from the person that looks back at you in the mirror. The government’s job is to allow for a stable environment to provide your own relief. As far as – I’m going to be very blunt – as far as sucking the government’s mammary – I’m dead set against that. We need to open up opportunities. We need to open this country up and we need to get people back to work – period. There are small businesses that are very good small businesses and they are screaming for help. They are willing to pay, people are not willing to work – that’s wrong. Especially when we have people that are willing to sit at home and collect their CERB. That’s so far from right it’s not funny. There is this socialist argument that if the business is competitive enough it wouldn’t have a problem finding employees. The problem is the businesses cannot compete against our government. The government has way too many resources and (is) way too liberal with how it puts its resources out and too restrictive on the people receiving the resources to be able to go out and work. What we need to do is we need to turn the taps off and get people back to work. There are more benefits to working than there is to not. You’re hitting me with all the hard stuff. As long as you do not take me out of context
I do not mind it.
LB: How would you provide relief to parents of young children in desperate need of support due to the high costs of child care services?
Baker: I understand the high cost. I appreciate that. A lot of that is a provincial issue. Education is provincial, it’s not federal so therefore it’s less my responsibility to address that. One of the problems I have with our system right now is, especially for our children and I’m seeing the results of children coming through the education system, it seems to me, a system of indoctrination and indoctrination starts as early as possible. Healthy daycare – why did we take private daycare out of homes? I mean when my daughter was growing up I knew a family that could use the extra help, we could use the extra help with her daycare and so it was a great symbiotic relationship. They didn’t charge us full pop. They were happy with what they got and I knew my daughter was in very good healthy hands. Why can’t we return to that? Why does the government have to have its finger and control over daycare? I mean, when we get into that control we get an added layer of cost, that added layer of cost translates back to the poor parents so I’m an advocate, I think people should, they’ll use – I mean I love what Ben Shapiro says – they take one bad apple and they create an entire legal system around a bad incident. Bad incidents are bad. We don’t want them. We want to do what we can to prevent them but there’s a practical limit to that in terms of our society as a whole and I think parents need to be more proactive and know the environment their children are in… I think it’s incumbent on the parents to selectively place their children where they feel most comfortable.
LB: Indigenous issues have been at the forefront of the news recently. What would you say Canadians can expect as far as the furthering of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action if your party is elected?
Baker: That’s cool. Where do I begin? I think we need to lose focus on issues that create division or issues that create a sense of guilt. I think we need to focus on learning from our past mistakes. I think that is what we are lacking with regards to Truth and Reconciliation with Indigenous issues. Just to make the record straight I am Indigenous. I identify as being Indigenous and my family hid that fact from me because of some of the issues with the Indigenous people. So I was in my 40s before I realized I was Indigenous. So there is a history there and I think that we need to learn and grow and move on.
LB: The demographics of Perth-Wellington have changed greatly in recent years and continue to change. How would you and your party represent the needs of a more diverse riding?
Baker: The best answer that I can come up with off the top of my head is we live in one Canada. We are under one nation and one flag and we are all Canadians and I’m going to parliament to represent the Canadians in my riding. We’re all Canadians. I think that addresses that question.
LB: Is there anything else you would like to let constituents know about what you intend to do for them that has not been asked?
Baker: We’re going into debt $40 million an hour [Reporter’s note: According to the debt counting clocks at debt.ca and debtclock.ca based on information collected by the Canadian Taxpayers Federation the number at the time of writing this article on Aug. 21 was $17,671,232.88 per hour]. That number is scary. I met with a group of individuals. They were all well-to-do farmers and quite frankly their net worth is easily over $40 million. I used that as an example and said if your net worth combined is $40 million this government will have blown through twice your net worth before we are through with this meeting. I said if you want to analyze how bad that is, figure out how hard it is to make a million dollars – that’s a serious issue in this country and that’s just our federal government. Our provincial government is just as bad and blowing through money just as much. We need to put the brakes on that and the sooner we do it the better we’ll be off as a nation. We’re running into a period now where if the brakes aren’t applied we’re going to see our savings go through the floor. We’re going to see our housing costs go through the roof and we’re going to see our government go completely out of control. This is our time to stand up and say we want our Canada back. We want to stop the tyranny and it’s time to vote for PPC.