Today’s millennials who are young and prosperous are forced to spend half their working lives saving barely enoughif anything at all, for a reasonable down payment on their first home at a time when they are starting a familyan injustice of the first order.

There are two sources of the crisis, namely speculation and the way in which home purchases are financed.

Our present legislation fails to take into account that incomes vary throughout the life of the mortgage leaving occupants vulnerable to foreclosures and eviction.  There is only one way to deal with the problem:  payments must vary with income whether the banks or landlords like it or notto wit, a floating mortgage or rent where payments are pegged to a fixed percentage of a buyer’s income over the life of the mortgage.

Here’s how it would work:

The cost of a dwelling whether rented or purchased must always be pegged by law to a fixed percentage of a dweller’s current income   irrespective of any positive or negative change in his income.  In a word, a floating payment plan for a person’s residence.  If a person’s income rises his payment would automatically rise with it or decrease should his income decline.

So how could we achieve this?  We would begin with legislation that prohibits the use of a down payment of any kind whatsoever and apply the entire cost to a floating mortgage where the amount applied to the outstanding principle would be set at a fixed percentage of the buyer’s income.  Interest charges would not be allowed to exceed applications to the principle which would float with the buyer’s income.  Hence, any increase in the buyer’s income would shorten the life of the mortgage while income reduction or interruption would lengthen the life of the mortgage.

Such an arrangement will easily put the dream of home ownership within the reach of even the poorest of the poor and eliminate the threat of homelessness flowing from the unforeseen such as job loss or illness.

Any politician who works the foregoing into his platform will undoubtedly be ushered into public office in a political landslide.

All that is required on the part of governments is political will.

I often call this the HELSINKI FORMULA on the housing crisis where homelessness is literally unknown due to it’s  HOUSING FIRST  policy on coping with poverty.


Calgary: March 26, 2022 

Consumers vs taxis—a contest between the rising  taxi operating costs that push fares to unaffordable levels for most riders, particularly the disabled and elderly is a source of angst for everyone.

City politicians notably Ward 7 Councillor Terry Wong, Ward 5 Councillor Raj Dhaliwal with Calgary McCall MLA Irfan Sabir and Minister of Transportation RajanJSaw.

Several oral presentations were given by drivers and Jeff Garland GM of Associated Cabs .

The general consensus among all of them the severe market fragmentation caused by the invasion of TNCs in 2016 and rising operating costs particularly fuel and insurance.

The forgoing led to my presentation as shown below:

RajanJSaw Transportation Minister

Several oral presentations were given by drivers and Jeff Garland GM of Associated Cabs .

The general consensus among all of them the severe market fragmentation caused by the invasion of TNCs in 2016 and rising operating costs particularly fuel and insurance.

The forgoing led to my presentation as shown below:

March 25, 2022

 Good afternoon, everyone.  My name is John Bliss whom many of you may remember from the course of my taxi driving career over the past 45 years here in Calgary.  I also drove taxis in Sault Ste. Marie and Winnipeg during the 1970s.  I retired in 2015 and took up journalism in an effort to dispel myths and disinformation flowing from the propaganda of UBER and the taxi brokers themselves.

A review of the ongoing taxi debate and current existences, particularly fuel, insurance, usurious stand rents, and customer concerns, I am now convinced that taxis, ride share operators, and consumers are better off with the city itself being solely responsible for the overall management and operation of the industry.

In other words, put all the taxi brokers right out to pasture and make Calgary Transit the only legal taxi-rideshare broker in the city.  And here’s why.

  • Drivers would become city employees receiving all benefits flowing from being a government employee, such as pensions, paid sick leave and income security and better pay.
  • New technology such as digital dispatching (ProCabby)  and voice dispatching (RedRoute) make the traditional brokers obsolete.
  • Overall stand rents, high license fees, and broker abuse would become a thing of the past. A small tax on each trip would finance Calgary Transit’s taxi-limousine operating budget and such a tax could even cover insurance costs.
  • The city would have better control over fleet sizing and vehicle demography as to wheelie vans, sedans, and luxury corporate sedans etc.
  • Cab fares can more easily be set to a level that accurately reflects the operating cost of a cab which unfortunately well over 50% for the riding public such as myself, cannot afford.                                                                       
  • The city can however subsidize each trip by issuing a taxi pass which would automatically calculating the customer’s share of the fare based on line 150 of his tax return.
  • Enhanced professionalism—an absolute must for the industry would be greatly improved by the City’s training program, particularly with geography and violence prevention as opposed to the dummed down training that put in its appearance with the onset of UBER who insisted on promoting the myth that drivers need no training since all they do is drive cars and GPS navigation makes city knowledge unnecessary.

UBER even has the temerity to say UBER driving is perfectly safe since you’d not be carrying any cash.  Would they please explain that to the grieving family of 30-year-old Kasif Hirani who was found dead not far from the Springbank Airport just couple of days after New Year’s Eve 2019.

UBER’s propaganda fails to mention that 90% of all cab violence is the result of other issue such as fare disputes, or targeting the car itself or sexual assault with money taken as an afterthought.

The truth is taxi and rideshare operators are more likely to die from occupational homicide than any other occupational group in the economy including peace officers and prison guards.

A city training program will offer knowledge on crime, violence prevention and how to handle criminals when they encounter them.

The forgoing points are many and too elaborate to discuss in detail, but the bottom line is to put the brokers right out to pasture once and for all with drivers making a real living with enhanced customer satisfaction.  The city must be the only legal broker in Calgary.