Curses, Foiled Again!
Ron Bolin: July 7, 2013
“Curses, foiled again!” This classic phrase from Snidely Whiplash (or was it Dick Dastardly) could be imagined as emanating from the mouths of our City leaders as a BC Supreme Court judge on Friday ignored their pleas to overturn the principle of “Innocent until proven guilty”. Despite the City’s liberal use of our tax money in an attempt to demonstrate that Dave Cutts and John and Jane Doe should be presumed to be imminently guilty of various acts against the City and its bylaws even before any such act has been committed, the court upheld the right of citizens to peacefully protest the pronouncements of its political masters.
Not to have found the request for a premature injunction both precedent setting and, in effect, ultra vires, would have been to put anyone who questioned the decisions of their elected betters at risk of being labelled as probable miscreants who might warrant special treatment. And why was Mr. Cutts denied the costs of his defence against what the court decided was in the end, not a justifiable offence. Just as it could have been for John or Jane Doe, so could it have been for you and for me. And cannot court costs be used as a serious threat? This is truly bureaucracy run riot. And who pays the price? And by the way, what was the price? How much did we pay to threaten ourselves? .
At this stage of the game, can there be anyone –barring the denizens of City Hall and SARK who appear to be trapped as a matter of “face”- who believes that we, as a community or they as our representatives, know where this game that was started in the dark and continued in ignorance, will end?: or how much it will ultimately cost? Isn’t it the reincarnation of the VICC fiasco which started with a financial promise which barely passed, was soon broken and has proceeded to demand more and more of our community treasure each year? [The VICC is projected to lose over $3.5 million dollars this year (i.e. about 4.4% of our tax bill) and that cost is projected to increase each year over the next five.]
Nobody denies that the Colliery Dams require attention. Neither can it be denied that there has not been a thorough examination of the risks of the total related watershed system or of the costs of overall risk reduction or the damage to the community fabric of removal. Like the VICC we are shooting from the hip and the lip without a pause for sober consideration of the risks and the rewards. It is unfortunate that Chief White’s proposal for community participation in a community decision was ignored. A hand was offered and it was spurned. Why? It beats me. What is the game that is being played? And who benefits from it?
I was once told by someone on Council that once the public has elected a representative they don’t want to think about issues any longer, leaving that to their elected Councillor(s). This is one definition of representative democracy. It is not one which I can embrace. Nor do I find it one applicable in Nanaimo where issues, even if they are raised during an election, tend to be soon forgotten. Where, for example, is the transparency which so many of our candidates promised?
Your thoughts on these matters are requested.
The VICC is projected to lose over $3.5 million dollars this year (i.e. about 4.4% of our tax bill) and that cost is projected to increase each year over the next five.]
What is the game that is being played? And who benefits from it?
The VICC and it’s associated projects are what is called in modern parlence.
To big to fail; or so Council, staff & the downtown business interests seem to think.
Too big to fail? Not. Just watch. Eventually it will be sold to the lowest bidder for a dollar just like the City Hall Annex, which now the mayor is obliged to rent while his office is renovated!
With one in camera meeting our city council has ignited the passions of the citizens of Nanaimo to a perhaps never seen level. The shear closemindedness of some council members and city staff to even consider other alternatives is arrogance to the nth degree and quite simply no one will really benefit except perhaps the citizens themselves. It is truly remarkable to witness so many people, from different walks of life, stand up and perform their civic duty. Again where is the transparency in this and where o where is the communications plan.
“. . . the hotel has nothing to do with tourists driving off to see the wonder of the island: it is a real estate sales office . . . ” Never give a sucker an even break: RK, July 02, 2013.
“Bernie Dumas, Nanaimo Port Authority president and CEO, said, “the renovations could also get Nanaimo into the international container shipping business . . .” NNB: July 03, 2013.
Ummmm, if it is that easy why has the port not done this before? Why has it been yarding poles to waiting freighters these last ten years? What valuable cargos will be containerized out of Nanaimo?
What is the City going to do with it’s waterfront/not Wellcox property hemmed in by the, apparently durable, assembly wharfs?
Council on Shaw: July 08. Snuneymuxw Chief White shamed council into reversing its decision on the immediate deconstruction of Colliery dams.
Later councilors could not remember how many rooms or how many guests the proposed SSS Manhao International hotel will accommodate although it has been reported at 200 eager Chinese travelling youth.
Did council, last nite, conjecture that, somewhere, down the line VICC will be relegated to the scrap yards to cauterize the bleeding: or was that the moment I switched to Andy Warhol on Knowledge?
And Bruni B coaxed us all to smile . . .