We’re BACK! After the CALAMITY in the U.S.; Can we now agree that politics does matter, every vote IS important and ignorance of the issues is NO excuse!

Posted: November 28, 2016 in Uncategorized

This BLOG has been silent for the past seven months, not for lack of interest but for reasons of changes in our personal life, selling the farm after 19 years, relocating to a new home in Aldergrove, getting used to a NEW normal and recharging the batteries! Full retirement by the way is great!

After the daily viewing of the calamity down south, the actions (or inactions) of our NEW Liberal Government, the upcoming B.C. Provincial Election (next May) and the unbridled actions (or inactions) of our Municipal Government, there is MUCH to talk about! Politics is or can be divisive; unfortunately ignoring it is just too costly to you and your family. Federal, Provincial and Municipal; become active or at the very least BECOME INFORMED on the issues! Politics is not a spectator sport, it is a participation sport!

First, we can and better learn from our neighbor’s experience. The following comes from the writing of a very well-known U.S. reporter – Dan Rather – after and about the U.S. election.

I find it very instructive and relevant to all elections “Ours included – Federal, Provincial and MUNICIPAL!”

“I suspect we shall hear a lot of, “OH NEVERMIND” after November 8.

From GOP supporters of Donald Trump who backed him for a cynical political calculus – they may want to say NEVERMIND. But we should mind – and not forget.

From far too many of the press who gave Trump an open mic and treated his many serious transgressions with indifference and false equivalence – they may want to say NEVERMIND. But we should mind – and not forget.

From those who whipped up xenophobia and misogyny in the name of rallying the base – they may want to say NEVERMIND. But we should mind – and not forget.

From those who suppressed the vote and were called out on it – they may say NEVERMIND. But we should mind – and not forget.

From those who fanned the flames of lies and persecuted the truth – they may want to say NEVERMIND. But we should mind – and not forget.

I suspect historians will find fault with many and virtue with few when they look back at this election. But let us not descend into cynicism. The future of this country is indeed at stake. But even with the vote on November 8, the chapters of our American story will be written in ink not yet dry. Our destiny will depend on how we act going forward.

Will we buy into the “NEVERMIND” crowd, or will we resolve, together, to demand better of our elected officials, our press, and ourselves?”

I will add the following that affects many areas of our provincial and MUNICIPAL politics!

CORRUPTION IN POLITICS DOESN’T SCARE ME…. What SCARES ME is how comfortable people are, doing nothing about it, or are they just too busy to see that it DOES exist?

Where to start? How did I get involved in politics? Where do I stand POLITICALLY? Well I have always been very clear that I am a staunch and avid free enterpriser, I make NO apologies for that. Having said that I have NO patience for those that are so ideologically loyal on the left or right that they can’t see right from wrong AND BECOME BLINDLY LOYAL!

My wife and I got involved in the infamous 1975 B.C. Provincial election by joining and working for the Social Credit Party (as I recall a few of over 120,000 paid members) delivering pamphlets up and down the hills of North Delta with our very young children, trying to defeat the Dave Barrett NDP. As history has shown, Social Credit was very successful and under the leadership of Bill Bennett proceeded, in my opinion, to move B.C. forward. Now it should be noted that under the NDP there were some very good initiatives launched and we fought against them, BUT some of those initiatives survive to this day. For sure not all free enterprisers will agree with them, but if that wasn’t the case why has ICBC, the Agricultural Land Reserve, the Seabus among many others survived? The right has had ample time to change things if they felt they weren’t popular. You see, while I am an ardent free enterpriser I have a huge problem with extremists on either-side, right or left of the political spectrum. Those that are willing to dismiss wrongdoing by their government because of their ideological attachment; I have neither time nor patience for that stand. It does a serious disservice to our system of government on behalf of all citizens.

Social Credit lost the election to the NDP in 1991 and that loss was well deserved. I had been an Alderman in Delta 1987 – 1990 and was the Social Credit candidate for Delta North in that infamous 1991 election. (See my political BIO on this BLOG) It was a tough election to go through but I hung in there knowing the result ahead of us was inevitable. OH I was VERY outspoken within the party before, during and after the election. I say the loss was justified because the Social Credit Government of the day got embroiled in scandal after scandal and became disconnected from the electorate which they were elected to serve. Despite all of the scandalous issues attached to the party, most on the extreme right side of the party refused to see the forest for the trees. The downfall of Social Credit started with the infamous Whistler Convention of 1986. I was an elected delegate that attended the political convention of the century 30 years ago last July. The memories still reverberate, unfortunately the parties demise was inevitable starting with the decision made that year.

So back to the question – What is happening in our politics today? I have a huge problem with politicians who make promises during an election campaign and break those promises after the election, or those that sit back and willingly allow the bureaucracy to run things as normal! So why or how are we allowing this to happen? The media should take a good deal of the responsibility but the media today is in the hands of large corporation providing an ever decreasing number of resources available to do the research and investigative journalism all of us would expect. So if politics are to change it will take all of our collective interest and for good people to step forward to lead and campaign for that change.

So it can be said that our politicians’ ongoing inaction and their less than honest actions AFTER being elected are at the root cause of what appears to be the start of significant voter backlash? At the highest level we have now seen it in the U.S.. How far reaching will it be? Don’t bet against it happening in Canada. Now it worries me when I hear some people in Canada preaching the virtues of Donald Trump’s win and his outrageous campaign in the states. With two bad candidates running they chose the one person that promised the most undeliverable, a person who by ALL accounts (his own admission on the Howard Stern Show) is a sexual predator, an individual who can only be described as a serial narcissistic liar, a closet racist, and by any well researched account a poor businessman, someone nobody thought had a chance of winning. You know that old saying “Don’t let the truth get in the way of a good story”, it was made for Trump! This was nothing more than the ultimate knee jerk reaction to the public’s feelings of isolation from their government. Over reaction sure, but it IS the result of the inactions by previous governments. Unfortunately this over reaction is being seen in many spots throughout the world. We live in the best country in the world but if we are not careful something like this can happen here. Governments and their elected representatives unfortunately have personal parochial interests designed to serve their own well-being at ALL THREE LEVELS OF GOVERNMENT. Corruption can and does happen at our Federal, Provincial and MUNICIPAL levels of government at the expense of ALL of us! When are WE going to wake up?

My intent with this post is to encourage residents to get involved and active politically through joining forces with fellow residents to change the direction of our Municipal Government. Issues that we face are increased and unbridled community density, ad-hoc zoning and poor community planning in Fort Langley, Willoughby, Brookswood/Fernridge, Walnut Grove and Aldergrove. The outrageous building of an Outdoor Pool in Aldergrove and the selling off of Municipally owned lands to friends and insiders all at our collective expense for the benefit of connected insiders and much much more are issues that need to be dealt with. While it has been up and running for close to eight years, the Langley Events Center is a prime candidate for a Forensic Audit!

A little story to whet your appetite just in case you think it isn’t possible to change things? We moved out to Langley, bought our farm, horses, truck, trailer and farm equipment in 1996 under one condition from my wife – You are out of politics! Over the years I had a few friends approach me to get involved in all three levels of government out here but I rejected all advances. My lack of involvement lasted until early 2007 when issue after issue got me enraged. What were they? The Mayor and Council of the day –

  • Purchased Bedford House Restaurant for $2.55 M – $1.3 M over assessment
  • Sold ¾ acre to neighbor for $12,000 – no public disclosure
  • Sold 40 acres of non-ALR developable property (Dixon Pit) – For $2 million to a so-called Township elite.
  • Langley Municipal Airport leases – 25% of market rates
  • McLeod Athletic Park Grandstand – Township share budgeted at $800,000 actual cost $3 million
  • Langley Event Center – Full outline of Financial Boondoggle in earlier post.
  • New Water Management Plan – Planned to Meter Private Wells!
  • Speed Bumps on 0 Ave. – Prior to election a petition taken, 10 % in favor – they were installed after the election despite being told by the Mayor they wouldn’t be.
  • 16th intersections – Planned for traffic circles in four locations.
  • Park Lane Condo Wall – Added 4th floor at 4th reading (increase of density illegal)
  • Residential Tax Increases TRIPLE the rate of inflation for 6 years UP 26% compounded!
  • Residential Tax Increases in 5 year Fin. Plan at 5% per year UP 25% compounded!
  • Purchased Redwoods Golf Course – A VERY lucrative deal for the former owner, no need to buy the Golf Course as green belt was protected through zoning.
  • Outrageous Mufford Crescent Diversion with no public consultation.
  • And many more.

NOTE: By the way, despite this raft of issues, our MLA Rich Coleman told me in a meeting in February of 2008, 10 months prior to the election in his office, that WE were OK with the job the then Mayor was doing. My response, it is Bullshit and is going to stop! I still wonder who the “WE” is? Rich, once again who is we?

So armed with this package of issues I went about talking to residents and building a support base with a view to challenge the sitting Mayor. There were 100s of meetings within the community, both individual and groups over a 17 month period. (How that happened is a long story founded in a commitment to change what was going on.) In any event WE WON!

The next Post following in 4 days will be a post that will outline “our achievements” during my term despite the ongoing antics of the Council of the day.

Now I want to be very clear as I am sure there will be those that will spread rumors that this is somehow a start of my next campaign for Mayor – NO! NO I am retired and I am finished with elected political office, but I am not going away! I am publishing this series of posts to send a message to citizens of our community that, IF you take the time and make the commitment you can be successful as an agent of change through elected political office. It isn’t EASY, but despite the hardships and attacks that were levelled against me over my term I am very proud of our accomplishments!!

As they say be careful what you wish for. Following the next post on accomplishments will be a detailed four part series which will be published over the following three weeks. This series, Entitled “The Story”, will inform those who have wondered and asked about the Real Story of my “Mayoral Term”. All of this is intended to be informative for anyone willing to step forward to run in the next election. We faced down the bullies of the Township, all it takes is the determination to do so. I am more than willing to discuss this challenge with anyone willing to step forward. Our community is looking for independent and qualified leaders. Contact me at any time. My personal contact numbers are identified in my BLOG. All contacts are guaranteed to be confidential.

RG

The next post will present the issues faced and our success in dealing with them. The majority in spite of the Council members of the day!

Protect your Democratic Rights – Protect your NEIGHBORS Democratic Rights – stay informed, get involved, stay involved and VOTE!!!

 

Share this BLOG; forward it to your friends, neighbors and relatives!

 

To comment on this post – Click on this Post, top left hand corner under recent posts.

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