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Old April 17th, 2005, 01:55 PM   #1
DRTO
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Should Toronto become a city state like Singapore?

If Toronto were to separate from Canada, it would be one of the wealthiest cities in the world. It would no longer have to send $11 billion a year to the rest of Canada. We could afford to build subways on every major road, house every homeless person, provide the best education and health care in the world. Just imagine, Toronto would be the envy of the world!
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Old April 17th, 2005, 04:01 PM   #2
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I'm glad I'm not the only person that has thought about this. This would solve a lot of problems, but also create some new ones. In the end result though, I think it would unquestionably be for the better and lead to Toronto's true golden age once the kinks are ironed out. The big problem though is that Canada could potentially collapse economically and much more dependence on the US may result.
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Old April 18th, 2005, 03:57 AM   #3
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What a silly idea. Toronto has this wealth right now because it can funnel the resources of the rest of Canada through itself. I don't resent this ; I'm glad we have a world class city in Canada. But if you think Toronto would be better off economically then you are naive. That wealth is generated BECAUSE of the rest of Canada. After a hypothetical seperation you'd have a lot more costs to deal with than you do now. You think you'd still be losing eleven billion a year to the rest of Canada? No, you just wouldn't have that eleven billion to begin with. Don't forget, with Toronto gone, Canada would build itself another great city as it's showcase and main entry port. Toronto would be bypassed. Two and a half million people would not be able to support the economy that Toronto now enjoys.
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Old April 18th, 2005, 04:20 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LooselogInThePeg
What a silly idea. Toronto has this wealth right now because it can funnel the resources of the rest of Canada through itself. I don't resent this ; I'm glad we have a world class city in Canada. But if you think Toronto would be better off economically then you are naive. That wealth is generated BECAUSE of the rest of Canada. After a hypothetical seperation you'd have a lot more costs to deal with than you do now. You think you'd still be losing eleven billion a year to the rest of Canada? No, you just wouldn't have that eleven billion to begin with. Don't forget, with Toronto gone, Canada would build itself another great city as it's showcase and main entry port. Toronto would be bypassed. Two and a half million people would not be able to support the economy that Toronto now enjoys.
The rest of Canada used to be important to Toronto's economy. That changed when free trade was introduced.
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Old April 18th, 2005, 04:26 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DRTO
The rest of Canada used to be important to Toronto's economy. That changed when free trade was introduced.
Oh? How so?
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Old April 18th, 2005, 04:48 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LooselogInThePeg
Oh? How so?
Canada used to be southern Ontario's biggest market for exports. Ever since free trade, America became southern Ontario's most important export market. The importance of Canada as a market for southern Ontario's exports declines every year, while the US increases. Besides, if Toronto separated, does that mean it couldn't trade with the rest of Canada? I assume a separate Toronto would become part of NAFTA.
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Old April 18th, 2005, 05:06 AM   #7
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Old April 18th, 2005, 07:10 AM   #8
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This idea is as mature as that episode of "I Love Lucy" where they draw a line down the centre of the room.

Of course we'd be able to keep our precious money, but we'd separate ourselves from many things that are vital to our economy. NAFTA isn't automatic; the other countries would have to agree to allow us in (Saint Pierre and Miquelon is in North America, so does that automatically make France a member of NAFTA?). And, assuming we did become a part of NAFTA, when we sit down at the NAFTA table to discuss trade disputes, we'd be speaking with Canada, Mexico, and America. How much pull do you think we'd have in such a meeting, a mere sliver of the North American economy? Don't think for a moment that America is enjoying its current trade deficit. If America finds an excuse to cut off or limit trade with us (re: softwood lumber, mad cow...), then our economy is slowed drastically, or may even begin to shrink. Besides, you shouldn't forget where most of the natural resources and many of the experienced workers for our precious manufacturing industry come from, gentlemen. Not to mention the fact that Toronto is the corporate headquarters of many companies that are run throughout Canada (mining, transportation, etc)... so why would they maintain their headquarters in a foreign territory? The TSX would shrink as a result of this exodus (farewell to a great deal of white collar jobs) and another location would become the business centre of Canada. When it comes to dumping trash, Canada/America can pretty much name a price and we'd have to pay it. Furthermore, if there were ever a massive blizzard...

Blah blah blah... there is no end to saying why this would be a bad idea. I can't believe I even bothered. Our deal in Toronto may be rotten, but this isn't the way to handle it. Rather than post, I should have just laughed if off with malek...
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Old April 18th, 2005, 07:17 AM   #9
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Would Toronto really still be as important economically if it loses a border crossing with the US? I think a Golden Horseshoe country would work far better, but I don't like the idea of separating from the rest of Canada at all.
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Old April 18th, 2005, 03:03 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DRTO
Canada used to be southern Ontario's biggest market for exports. Ever since free trade, America became southern Ontario's most important export market. The importance of Canada as a market for southern Ontario's exports declines every year, while the US increases. Besides, if Toronto separated, does that mean it couldn't trade with the rest of Canada? I assume a separate Toronto would become part of NAFTA.
Well if that's the case, how would it help for Toronto to have to pay to import raw materials from Canada to turn into manufactured goods?

Okay, let's actually think about this for a moment: What currency will Toronto use? How much will it cost for Toronto to set up it's 'national' government departments such as immigration, healthcare, revenue, justice, prisons, defense, etc. ? How will Toronto replace the lost jobs when Canadian corporations move out (and yes, there would definitely be a mass exodus....why would the Bank of Montreal etc. headquarter themselves in a foreign country ?) Then of course there's the fact that Toronto will have to pay even more for it's necessary imports like food and gas. In fact, with no natural resources, Toronto will have to pay even more for just about everything. As costs go up, production values go down. Toronto becomes uncompetitive. Pretty soon it passes it's costs on to the customer....and on it goes until whatever profit the city was making is whittled away to nothing. And who's going to pay more for something from Toronto when even Hamilton down the road can produce it cheaper?

Toronto be better off as it's own state...you're dreaming my friend.
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Old April 18th, 2005, 05:31 PM   #11
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Someone brought an excellent point of re-jigging our federation so it is an association of provinces and city-states (Toronto, Montreal, Van, Calgary). It's an interesting idea.
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Old April 19th, 2005, 01:44 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by malek
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I pretty much agree but I would also like to add.



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and




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Old April 19th, 2005, 02:14 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by salvius
Someone brought an excellent point of re-jigging our federation so it is an association of provinces and city-states (Toronto, Montreal, Van, Calgary). It's an interesting idea.

Time to be serious.

The only thing that could bring this kind of power shuffle is that Separatists gain a referndum in Quebec (or else) and that the federal govt in a last bid to save the country revise/rewrote the constitution.



drastic ideas needs drastic measures.
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Old April 19th, 2005, 02:23 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by malek
Time to be serious.

The only thing that could bring this kind of power shuffle is that Separatists gain a referndum in Quebec (or else) and that the federal govt in a last bid to save the country revise/rewrote the constitution.
It was more of a thinking exercise than anything else. Obviously, it could never happen.
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Old April 19th, 2005, 03:24 AM   #15
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While the thought of that does give me tingles, the power to do that is ultra vires(?). I know that is just for fun, but why do noobs always start topics that seem stupid and get out of hand? Sorry if this offends anybody.
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Old April 19th, 2005, 05:29 AM   #16
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Although the idea is attractive at first thought, it really does not make any sense when it is thought through a little more carefully.

For one thing, it would probubly wreck Toronto's economy and it would certainly cost alot of money to replace the departments that upper levels of government currently employ.

What is more feesable is an idea much more like Sal's thoughts on upgrading cities status.

Many foriegn cities have province status in their respective countries, it only makes sense that Canada's lead cities have similar arrangements.
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Old April 19th, 2005, 07:46 AM   #17
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Don't worry all, a Toronto City Act is on its way. This will give Toronto significantly more power, tha act should be approved by the end of the year.
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Old April 19th, 2005, 11:44 AM   #18
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^ Do you have any more information, links, etc? ^
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Old April 19th, 2005, 05:03 PM   #19
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Sure, Toronto could seceed from Canada, but it would destroy the city. The wealth of Toronto is mined in northern Canada. The reason for all the financial deals, the wealth of the citizens, the manufacturing, everything, is because Toronto makes its money off the natural resources of the rest of the country. While the economy has diversified somewhat in the last 50 years (into telecommunications, high-tech, pharmaceuticals) the centers of those industries are outside the city limits (Markham, Mississauga, Brampton, etc.) and therefore not part of the equation.

Further, just because trade from Ontario has become more focused on the states after free trade, it does not ensure economic success of the new Republic of Toronto (or whatever). To allow Toronto to join NAFTA would require the approval of the US, Canada and Mexico. I'm not sure about the States or Mexico, but you can bet that Canada would not support Toronto leaching possible wealth from Canada since many of the functions that Toronto performs for the national economy would be very lucrative to whichever Canadian cities they moved to.

Although I'm sure that this is just a hypothetical argument, it does sort of smack of the arrogance that people in other parts of the country dislike Toronto for (as does the Jane Jacobs province of Toronto idea). Frankly, I would bet that 95% of the political discontent that hatches these ideas could be solved by some recognition of the place of cities in the constitution, so that they do not exist at the whim of the provincial governments. Solving this would be a whole helluva lot easier and more productive than declaring a new nation.
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Old April 19th, 2005, 05:42 PM   #20
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hhhhmmmm i dunno......should paris hilton get a boob job??
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