Who’s the real bully here? Could it be the government that has said businesses that can’t pay a $15 per hour wage don’t deserve to be in business? Could it be the government is publicly shaming businesses that are taking tough but needed steps to stay afloat and protect jobs? Premier Kathleen Wynne’s shock over small business owners’ reaction to the wage hike — be it increasing prices or reducing benefits, hours or positions — would have a lot more credibility had her government ordered even a basic impact assessment of the minimum wage hike before moving forward. We asked for one, numerous times, over the past several months; 94 per cent of our members want one. But the government consistently refused, opting instead to blindly roll the dice with people’s livelihoods. Why would they do that? To borrow a phrase from the premier, “I’ll be blunt.” This whole social experiment is an act of a government that doesn’t appear to give a care in the world as to how their actions affect the small businesses on Main Street. It is a pre-election goodie paid for by your local dry cleaner, coffee shop, and mechanic — not by your government.