Finally, the most important and least exciting election in Canadian history (until the next one) ends Tuesday.
Whatever happened to fun and frolic on the campaign trail? Remember Conservative Robert Stanfield's famous football fumble caught on film from 1974 or Grit John Turner patting posteriors of Liberal ladies in 1984?
Today’s campaigns are too stage-managed, but there were moments of levity in 2008.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper (yes, he does wear make-up to work every day) tried to show his casual side by taking off his Tory tie and feeding a baby at the Huang family residence in Richmond. It all looked semi-genuine until Harper walked up to the podium. Who keeps a podium in their backyard?
Liberal Stephane Dion's campaign took off and immediately went south in a 29-year-old gas-guzzling Boeing 737 leased from Air Inuit. So much for the Green Shift.
NDP leader Jack Layton promoted a new kind of strong, but weakness in candidate screening quickly became apparent. Two quit for smokin' doob on YouTube and another "kneedipper" was exposed as a skinnydipper. Oh, the humanity!
Then there's Green Party leader Elizabeth May. She ensured Sunday that she wouldn't become Ms. October when she put down the green flag and picked up a white one. The proponent of the single transferrable voting system urged Canadians to transfer their Tuesday vote to any candidate likely to beat a Tory.
Coalition-building on the eve of an election is bound to fail, just like last-minute shopping for Christmas presents at 7-Eleven.
Monday, October 13, 2008
Sunday, October 12, 2008
If you're a citizen of Surrey, B.C., you might want to ask your mayor how city hall expects to break ground on its $10.5 million Games Preparation Centre construction project in Whalley sometime in mid-to-late November and then have it up and running for VANOC to use by the end of February.
The facility to train Olympic workers and volunteers and rehearse ceremonies was announced way back on May 26.
The proposed construction period falls on the part of the calendar with the least sunlight and worst weather. Oh, and there is also Christmas and New Year's holidays!
Surrey promised VANOC that it would have 5,500 square feet ready to occupy for Feb. 1, 2009, but Mayor Dianne Watts admitted last week that won't happen. Yet, there is a clause in the contract between Surrey and VANOC that allows VANOC the right to seek judicial relief without any defense by Surrey if any part of the contract is breached. Watts also admitted that clause stands as-is, without any amendment.
Is Watts a miracle worker or is she gambling her reputation and taxpayers' dollars?
Click on the images to read the relevant portions of the contract, obtained via Freedom of Information.
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