Friday, January 14, 2011

Middle class disappearing … in multi-culti Toronto

Toronto's Globe and Mail said it.
Toronto is becoming a city of stark economic extremes as its middle class is hollowed out and replaced by a bipolar city of the rich and poor – one whose lines are drawn neighbourhood by neighbourhood. 

New numbers indicate a 35-year trend toward economic polarization is growing more pronounced: The country’s economic engine, which has long claimed to be one of the most diverse cities in the world, is increasingly comprised of downtown-centred high-income residents – most living near subway lines – and a concentration of low-income families in less dense, service- and transit-starved inner suburbs. 
 Who are these low-income families?
Those in the lowest-income areas are also more likely to be immigrants and visible minorities.
… If the trend continues … Toronto in 2025 will have a concentration of high-earners along the lakefront and the city’s subway lines surrounded by low-income areas – with almost nothing in between.
Haven't Canada's bien-pensants been telling us in season and out that diversity is the key to the country's strength? That its comatose white population is a real drag, and only the cultural and economic enrichment of immigration from the world's far corners (plus the Eskimos, or whatever their politically correct name is) offers salvation?
That continuing trend risks creating pockets of the city that become “no-go zones,” said Carol Wilding, president of the Toronto Board of Trade. She added the information isn’t surprising, but it “starts to put more of a crisis tone” on the need for the city to fix a growing problem that’s as economic as it is social. 

“It does make it more challenging for businesses to want to get in there to invest in those neighbourhoods,” she said. “It’s a greater call to action. … We aren’t moving fast enough.”
Ms. Wilding, why do you say the situation isn't surprising? It's not surprising to you that all those immigrants are getting behind in their re-vitalizing of Canada? Do you mean Toronto isn't welcoming enough, with its TV programs in 30 languages?

The city should be moving faster toward what? Oh, yes, "for the city to fix a growing problem that's as economic as it is social." How should the city fix the problem? Create Section 8 vouchers for the immigrants and visible minorities to live in the lakeshore high-rises? Bus the kids of the high-income residents out to the low-income, service- and transit-starved 'burbs?

To people like Ms. Wilding — and I'm sure she represents all respectable opinion in Toronto — the problems never have anything to do with the immigrants themselves. It's those beastly high earners. It's middle class folks who don't want to live in the inner city with all the Third Worlders they assure you are the very essence of what Canada stands for.
It also seems to contradict Toronto’s most prized mottos – “Diversity our strength” and “The city that works.” Neither of those rings true any more: Toronto’s diversity is becoming balkanized, turning it into a weakness where it could otherwise act to the city’s advantage. The creation of economically polarized pockets of high- and low-income residents means Toronto simply won’t “work” as a municipal entity
If diversity has become a disadvantage, a balkanizing force (as it invariably does, in Toronto or anywhere), how could it "otherwise act to the city's advantage"? Faced with the reality of the effects of mass immigration, the multi-cultural cheerleaders can only fall back on a hard-line insistence that it should work! It shouldn't be a problem!
In Toronto, the idea of neighbourhood-specific poverty came to the fore several years ago. Among city-sponsored and independent community initiatives, it spawned a “priority neighbourhoods” program, in which the city targeted several particularly troubled areas. Despite the flood of money and services, however, things aren’t improving on a broader scale. 
So it is in the fantasy land of multi-culturalism, ever and ever, world without end. Despite government initiatives and programs "targeting" under-served visible minorities, pasting money over the problems, things don't improve. They keep going the way they're going. When you can't acknowledge the truth, that a middle-class society and population replacement from tribal societies are incompatible, then all you can do is weep about "challenges" not being met. And issue yet another call to action, and warn that the action isn't coming fast enough.



Anonymous said...

Mr. Darby,

The question I always, always ask myself in regards to such articles is do the Wildings of the world really believe their own propaganda? I'd say no, because chances are Ms Wilding does not live in one of those immigrant neighborhoods. Yet they push and push the travesty of "diversity" ever stronger each and every day.

What is this illness that infects so much of Western Thought? I can understand the non-white's angles but for the life of me I don't get liberals. They are truly ill people.

God Bless,


Sandy said...

The problem with downtown Toronto is that it costs too much to live there in comparison to so many much nicer places to live. I know many people who moved there while young and single to get interesting jobs and live in the big city, only to move to Brampton when they wanted to be able to buy a house and get married. It has nothing to do with diversity or multiculturalism. My friends who have left downtown Toronto come from many different backgrounds.

The people who live in the poor areas of Toronto don't own the homes they live in. And those homes are not cheap enough for a middle class family to buy, even in the worst areas with no easy access to public transportation. When the housing boom encouraged people in other Canadian cities to buy cheaper older houses in urban areas and fix up the old neighborhoods, that didn't happen in Toronto because those homes are still stupidly over-priced. Torontonians can't imagine that property in that city might ever go down in value, so the asking price remains well above what the market will support.

It makes no sense to live downtown anymore. The jobs in the outer edges of the GTA pay about the same as the same job in the city would. But the cost of housing downtown is much higher. And the jobs are moving away from the city center anyway to avoid the higher business costs of being downtown.

Eventually the cost of housing will come down, and young families will consider staying in the city again. But right now, it just doesn't make any economic sense.

Rick Darby said...


You ask, "Do the Wildings of the world really believe their own propaganda?"

For the most part, people like Carol Wilding neither believe nor disbelieve what they say.

My observation is that something like 90 percent of adults are political and social chameleons. They take on their coloration from their environment. Whatever the majority's standard line is, that's what they "believe."

Ms. Wilding is probably smart enough to know that refusing to acknowledge the multi-cultural ideology would threaten her position as president of the Toronto Board of Trade, and possibly her very livelihood.


Economic factors surely play a part in the bifurcation of Toronto, as you say. It's a problem in all big cities that are considered attractive or important; housing prices quickly rise to absurd levels simply because there are enough people who can afford them. Those who can't are forced out.

But the article and quotations in it leave no doubt that ethnicity and immigration are a key element in the decline of middle class Toronto.

Nobody wants to admit it, but a multi-cultural population is not what it's alleged to be, a "vibrant" community whose synergy is its strength. Instead, it creates pockets of poverty and colonization that destroy social cohesion.

I would also not take at face value the reasons you friends give for moving to Brampton to be able to buy a house and get married. In both Canada and the U.S. you can get in all sorts of trouble if you admit that you are moving to get away from the urban decay generated by ethnic groups. In my country, the standard euphemism is, "We wanted to live in a good school district for the kids." Everyone understands the code.

Anonymous said...

Good school district = non black/non hispanic

Everyone and I mean everyone knows that is what the term "Good School District" means, not implies mind you, MEANS. There is absolutely no argument over what that term means because no one ever says it aloud, hence no argument.

But that is where it always ends no one other than the HBD blogsphere goes to the next logical step... I better stop there, I think I hear a knock at the door and boots scraping the step...


Sandy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sandy said...

Rick, you don't get away from multiculturalism by moving to the suburbs in Canada. You might get away from new immigrants, but that's hardly the same thing. My friends moving to Brampton have a variety of ethnic backgrounds.

The article is written from the perspective of someone from the Province of Ontario. That used to be "CANADA" as far as anyone from Ontario is concerned. But Ontario isn't doing so well these days. The oil boom continues out west, driving up the value of the Canadian dollar and making things produced in Ontario less attractive to American markets.

The last time this happened was in the 70's and the Federal government brought in the National Energy Policy as a means to quash the oil boom out west and return things in Ontario to a happy status quo. That isn't happening this time around because we have a western-backed Conservative government in power.

As long as Torontonians think their real estate is as valuable as housing in downtown Calgary, where jobs pay high enough wages to afford the rent, people are going to keep moving out of Toronto.

New Canadians bring many issues with them that cause problems, but after a few generations in Canada skin color and ethnicity isn't much of an issue anymore. I don't agree with universities banning alcohol as a means of not offending Muslim students. I think Muslims should be expected to tolerate the fact that I drink beer, look men in eye, and will shake someone's hand when I'm introduced even if I suspect he might see that as improper for a woman to do. Getting stupidly politically correct doesn't help anyone and creates a lot of resentment.

The problems in Toronto are not an issue with ethnicity. It's about slum landlords charging as much as they can for properties that only new Canadians, who typically don't have a clear understanding of better options, are willing to tolerate.

There are people I don't think should be welcomed into Canadian society. As Canadians we shouldn't be allowing women to be treated poorly simply based on it being part of someone's "culture". Instead of allowing new immigrants to congregate in large urban areas, I've always thought they should be expected to move to more isolated areas where people are needed to fill jobs. We need more northerners to protect our sovereignty in the north. Why shouldn't that be part of the cost of gaining citizenship?

Rick Darby said...


You are of course closer to the situation in Toronto and Canada than I am, so I bow to you concerning the details you cite. Yet I am afraid I must take issue with you about the big picture.

You write, "New Canadians bring many issues with them that cause problems, but after a few generations in Canada skin color and ethnicity isn't much of an issue anymore."

In the very next sentence you note (while disagreeing with the policy) that Canadian universities ban alcohol so as not to offend Muslims. That's a new one to me, but it fits in many other examples I've read about in your country (and, alas, too often in the U.S.) in which the indigenous population is expected to adjust its ways to those of the immigrants.

And it goes beyond just customs. Surely you have read about the notorious Canadian Human Rights Commission, which put Mark Steyn on "trial" for articles in Maclean's simply because some Muslim organizations professed to be offended. It cost Steyn much time and money to defend himself after committing the thought crime of writing something that Muslims didn't like.

If "after a few generations in Canada skin color and ethnicity isn't much of an issue anymore," I am afraid it will be because Canadians have adjusted to a soft totalitarianism that makes deference to the wishes of Muslims and other ethnics de rigueur and sets strict limits on freedom of speech and the press.

Sandy said...

Rick, I don't agree with the stupidity of political correctness many public institutions are now enforcing. A lot of Canadians are in the same boat.

Each university has it's own policy regarding alcohol, but the one I attend has stopped allowing it's consumption at most events. The new university president is baking cookies for Muslim students and trying to force a different kind of sense of community on students here.

It isn't working, BTW. Students illegally drink on campus or just go to off-campus pubs to socialize. Muslim students who find that offensive are marginalized more than ever. They don't get invited along and you don't tell them where everyone is headed to on a Friday afternoon.

I've seen female grad students torment a Muslim student with a bad attitude towards women so badly that the man went back to Saudi in short order. They made the guy look like an idiot in front of his thesis committee. He dropped out in disgrace and lost any chance he had of extending his student VISA or applying for citizenship.

The media is Canada is overly liberal. So they like to present stories to suggest that Canadians go along with all the stupidity. We don't.

Canada is still recovering from liberal policies brought in by the Trudeau government back in the 70's. But Western Canadians now have a much stronger voice in government policies and things are changing. But most of it is being done under the radar of the liberal media so as not to offend the voters in Ontario.

I find such a difference out west. Last time I went back to the university I did my MSc at, someone handed me a beer on my way into University Center. You see people of a variety of ethnicities, but everyone acts like a local.

Here in Ontario, people are still dreaming of the "golden age" of the Trudeau Era, when the rest of Canada had to take one for the team so that Ontario and Quebec could benefit. Ontario voters are way behind the rest of Canada. But I do think that idiotic political correctness is on the way out here too.

It isn't as if a Liberal leader is likely to take power in Canada at the moment.

Rick Darby said...


Thank you for offering this insight. Probably a great deal is going on in Canada "under the radar" that we Yanks don't hear about. Part of the reason may be because your media are captives of the Left, as ours are; part because most Americans are foolishly ignorant about Canada.

Sandy said...

Rick, if you want to get an idea of how attitudes are changing in Ontario, just have a look at the media coverage of the last mayoral race in Toronto. The media insisted that the guy who won was this terrible racist because he suggested that limiting the population of Toronto was a good idea. Apparently the majority of voters in Toronto thought it was a good idea too.

I think the media now likes to show how "terrible" things are in Toronto because it voted for a very right-wing mayor.

Anonymous said...

Nations are best secured when they are based on a common culture. In fact that is the very reason that nation states exist.

A common culture is a prerequisite to avoid a civil war and makes good sense. Good sense in that people with common culture will willingly cooperate for the common civic good. The more multicultural a society becomes, the less loyalty to the common weal. This then leads to the breakdown of law and order as the police and judiciary have no sense of what is right and wrong. We see this in Europe, particularly in Sweden, France, and one must not forget Britain.

As for Muslims - that is a separate issue altogether.