I often hear people in government say “you can’t manage what you don’t measure.” Makes sense right? The question is, what does the government want to “manage?” In the name of “sustainable development,” the government is very keen on “managing” you – what you say, where you go, what you consume – with an eye to eventually severely restricting your choices, mobility and consumption.
As is becoming increasingly evident, governments around the world are very busy these days constructing a global surveillance-control grid for we the people. It comes in many shapes and sizes. Ubiquitous surveillance cameras here in the City of Toronto, mandated GPS locators in mobile phones, the black box in your car, “smart” electricity meters, light poles that listen and now can be used to shout orders at you, cameras in computers that can be easily accessed, NASA and CSEC monitoring/storing phone calls, emails, tweets, etc., drones that take pictures, or carry tasers – the list is long and growing.
To that end, about a year and a half ago I received a notice from Toronto Water that I was required to schedule an appointment to have a “smart” water meter installed in my home. The absurdity of implementing a surveillance/rationing scheme on people living next to 20% of the world’s supply of fresh water (which people do not consume but recycle) did not seem to have crossed their minds. But our technocratic overlords know what is best, like Toronto Water charging extra fees to landowners for property services separate and apart from property taxes.
That led me to ask the City of Toronto/Toronto Water a series of questions. What was the enabling legislation that allowed Toronto Water to impose these meters? Why was Toronto Water taking orders from the scaremongering International Committee on Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI), the prime advocate for the implementation of the United Nations’ Agenda 21, versus realizing their mandate to serve citizens? Why did the City of Toronto house the World Secretariat of ICLEI in Toronto City Hall and subsidize it (in the millions of dollars) from 1991-2009? Given that Toronto Water does not have an easement on my property and I own the water pipes all the way to the property line, under what authority can Toronto Water fine me (up to $50,000) and/or turn off my water if I refuse the imposition of their “smart” meter? Given that I pay my water bill every 4 months, why does Toronto Water need their “smart” water meter to wirelessly transmit my water usage information 4 or more times a day? Lastly, have the meters been tested for potential adverse impacts to human health and safety?
These were the answers that I received.
Several frontline City employees insisted that the City bylaw was the enabling legislation (apparently they don’t teach the constitution in school anymore, so I spent considerable time fruitlessly explaining that municipalities can only do what the provincial government allows, i.e., enables, them to do, within constitutional limits).
Also, City of Toronto Public Health has completed a review of the manufacturers’ literature and is satisfied that “smart” water meters do not pose a threat to human health and safety, no actual testing required. I don’t think I need to explain the numerous problems with that answer.
My other questions were left unanswered, although Toronto Water did tout that continuously, remotely monitoring water usage allows them to detect and report water leaks to homeowners. As my partner drily noted, water leaks inside the house tend to make themselves known very quickly to homeowners.
Beyond those mealy mouthed answers, Toronto Water and Neptune continue to threaten those of us who refuse to comply. Over the phone, Neptune told me that I would be put on a “list.” Toronto Water still insists, through email, snail mail and face to face, that they intend to turn off my water, fine me $50,000 and charge me $80 per meter reading.
Those of us who refuse to comply have been called nutbars, conspiracy theorists and extremists for opting out of the surveillance-control grid and maintaining our privacy. Our technocratic overlords, who are busy destroying our common-law rights, they are the reasonable ones. (/sarc off)