What explains the ubiquity of left-wing ideology in Toronto? Start with an intolerance of dissenting ideas. William F. Buckley Jr. quipped that “a liberal is someone who claims to be open to all points of view — and then is surprised and offended to find there are other points of view.” The public is kept informed by the Toronto-centric CBC and its steady parade of counter-cultural, left-wing, radical-chic celebrities and academics. Toronto-centricity is hardly new; Donald Creighton, the University of Toronto’s famous historian, once noted the city’s “short horizon” that precluded it from seeing developments in Quebec or Western Canada.
The irony is that Toronto’s monolithic, suffocating liberal consensus negates a key raison d’être of any city, which is to host an invigorating culture of differing views. Closed-mindedness belongs in small towns. Yet Toronto, like the public sector it admires so much, embraces all types of diversity except ideological. The resulting conformism and groupthink reduces the vitalism and pluralism that generates innovative ideas, new companies and ultimately economic growth. John Howkins in his influential 2001 book, The Creative Economy, concluded that “Creativity thrives on differences.” Steven Pinker of Harvard notes that “It is only by bruiting ideas and seeing which ones withstand attempts to refute them that we acquire knowledge.”Thing is, the left doesn't want to acquire knowledge as much as it wants to control it.