Sunday, August 29, 2010


While Mayor Gregor grooves his way through bike lanes, our students go without schools, and parents wonder what our priorities really are. Can you really blame them. A Mayor should lead from the front to champion ways to improve the lives of it's citizens, especially children "our future". Think about the $260,000 spent on a bike lane used by one small segment of the population, and the fact that $42,820 would have saved this school.

It's time for the dissenters to speak up. I don't belong to any particular party and I stopped being "General Manager" of the universe, but when things start making less and less sense in my own backyard, I think it's time we stopped being such a polite bunch while this Mayor and Council seem to operate like a cuban dictatorship.

And true to his impish nature, when asked how he can justify spending money to make his office larger during these tough economic times, and while 7 floors at city hall remain empty, he is quoted as saying; I deserve to have a bigger office and that's what I'm going to get. It's the Gregorian Principle of always getting what he wants. Please Mr. and Mrs. Robertson pick up your little boy, wash his mouth out with soap, teach him some manners, and lend him a few bucks from his inheritance to help add another wing for his playroom. Maybe you can transfer some toys too from his bedroom at home to keep him busy in between the occasional bike trip on Burrard Street for a photo op.

As Jeff Green, the astute Vancouver Sun reporter said: "This city council is one that has never met a green initiative it didn't like. I would not expect this council, which pushed ahead with alacrity despite some concerns to build the $800,000 Dunsmuir lane and to put two separated lanes on Burrard Bridge, to somehow think differently about Hornby Street. "

"It's worth reading the city report on looking forward to cycling in 2010-2011. Will this Hornby bike lane be good or bad for the city? I have no idea. Cities don't advance or modernize without provocative leadership. But cities can also be harmed by overly-aggressive political agendas."

As evidenced by his untimely foul mouthed expression of disdain for dissenters, it's no wonder that this Mayor, more so than any other in our history has assumed a marxist philosophy that he will determine what is good and right for this city.

This past week somebody just happened to wander up to the seventh floor of city hall and look what they found:

VANCOUVER SUN - For nearly 75 years, the imposing grey art deco city hall building at the corner of 12th and Cambie has been a symbol of civic government in Vancouver. But for more than a year, city hall has harboured a secret, one created in the confusion of a growing and independent bureaucracy and complicated by changing politics and the 2010 Olympics. The upper seven floors of the 11-storey tower, built in 1936, are completely empty.

Last summer the entire engineering department moved into a newly built 86,000-square-foot commercial space at Cambie and Broadway that the city has leased for $41 million over the next 10 years. The city spent another $7 million to outfit and move the department. The move came in the same year the city laid off 158 people and raised taxes by 2.26 per cent to cover a $61-million shortfall in its $961-million budget.

That move, and another one this summer involving the social development, housing and cultural affairs departments moving into three city-owned floors of the renovated Woodward’s heritage building were done in the absence of any master plan, something city manager Penny Ballem says can’t happen again. WAIT A MINUTE, how long has this mayor and council been in office? They were elected Nov. 18, 2008. So,does that mean they kept their dirty little secret till now. You can't tell me that somebody didn't ask the question, what's happened to the people from floors 7-11??

She has now put a stop to departments making their own lease arrangements and wants to consolidate services back into a few city-owned buildings. BECAUSE SOMEBODY FROM THE MEDIA FOUND OUT! Come on who are you kidding. Stop the lies and how stupid must she think we are. The only unfortunate aspect of this is that if this was Enron , we would have had a whistle blower by now, but because it's government, everyone protects each other for fear they will lose their secure job.

When they left city hall, the engineers left everything, including desks, chairs, filing cabinets and boardroom tables. Now, the only services in the heritage building are the council chambers, mayor’s and councillors’ offices, city manager’s office, a public counter and a handful of small departments on the first three floors.

The Vancouver Services Review team is in temporary quarters on the fifth floor. As part of the reorganization, the city quietly closed the fourth-floor offices of the working media, turning them into a storage room for the protocol department. It has promised the media new offices elsewhere.

Plans for the now-vacant floors aren’t complete and the city hasn’t approved a budget for repopulating at least five of the seven empty floors. But Ballem acknowledged that her office will move from the third floor to the sixth this fall, allowing Mayor Gregor Robertson to expand his offices into her existing space. The city will also create a dining room and meeting area in part of the mayor’s old offices for the elected councillors who, Ballem says, now have no suitable place to eat. She said Robertson’s space is too cramped and he has no private office. Boo Hoo!!

WHAT A MESS!! We all know that it is illegal to withhold property taxes, but as a taxpayer who pays for this unbelievable travesty, I say it's time for not just a "wake up" call, but a complete shake up and investigation.

Most Canadians are conformists and we have a world wide reputation for being polite. Polite yes, but stupid no! It's time to show up en masse and get this Mayor and Council out to a school gymnasium somewhere in Vancouver and ask them what the hell is going on. TELL US THE TRUTH ABOUT YOUR AGENDA! If they can show up for a "Meet the Candidates Meeting" to tell us why they should be elected, then they can bloody well show up and tell us why we should believe and trust them with OUR MONEY! Would you give your money to a financial planner and not ask any questions about what he/she was doing with your money, and just trusted them to do the right thing?. Oh yeah, a lot of people did that didn't they. Can you say Bernie Madoff.

Dissenters benefit others, while conformists benefit themselves. Ask yourself this question, do I become a dissenter when something affects me and my family, and until that happens am I a conformist? And if so, what's the price I pay both financially and persoanlly.

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