By Jay Menard
Today we go to the polls. While I’m not going to tell you for whom you should vote — and in no way would I think it appropriate to do so for wards in which I don’t live and am not as conversant in the issues affecting those residents — I think there’s a way that, no matter who gets in, we can help ensure that the true winner is the City of London.
No matter who earns the most votes in this election, it’s important to remember the following things: Continue reading
By Jay Menard
We’re fast approaching London’s municipal election date. Though some have already made up their minds, I remain firmly in the camp of thinking there’s a lot of time. Things change, positions get analyzed, but — most importantly — there are plenty of opportunities for someone to prove to me that they meet the minimum expectations to earn my vote.
But that term “minimum” is a tricky word. After all, just because it’s my lowest threshold doesn’t mean it doesn’t come with lofty expectations. And, in my case, my minimum is held to a very high standard — the same standard I put on myself as a voter and an involved citizen of London. Continue reading
By Jay Menard,
“It’s not the band I hate. It’s their fans.” Yes, I am gearing myself up for Sloan’s appearance this weekend at the Western Fair’s Beer & BBQ Show, but that’s beside the point.
That lyric also perfectly sums up the way I feel about some of the participants in our municipal campaigns. And the danger for the candidates is that they’re going to suffer from guilt by association.
London, especially on Twitter and other social networks including our local paper’s comments section, is easily likened to a playground. Whether it’s puerile name calling or taking their figurative ball and going home when they don’t get their way, we see a lot of the worst in discourse.
I had hoped during a municipal campaign things would change, but I haven’t seen it yet. Continue reading
By Jason Menard
I prefer to vote FOR something, not against it. No matter at what level, I’d rather vote based on conscience, not compromise. Most of all, I want to choose from the best of the best; not the best of the rest.
If you follow municipal politics in London, you’ll know that, for some, the Great Satan is Incumbency (well, Selected Incumbency). The talisman to ward of that perceived evil, of course, is quality opponents (with a Hail Mary thrown towards term limits).
Yet, in an odd twist, there those who once lamented a dearth of quality candidates are now wringing their hands over an overabundance of perceived quality – to the point where the Great Satan of Incumbency will rise up, Lazarus-like, to reclaim his or her throne, based on vote-splitting.
And, to combat this challenge, there has been whispers of what is to me an even greater evil. An evil that undermines the intent of the electoral process in its purest form.
Strategic candidate selection. Continue reading
By Jason Menard
The top priority for every candidate in the upcoming 2014 London municipal election is easy to define — in fact, it’s got to be number one with a bullet.
Because the buckshot approach of the past couple of councils is only serving to scatter their effectiveness — well, if you discount council’s effectiveness in shooting itself in the foot.
Though I’m very much anti-gun, I hope you’ll forgive my analogy. A bullet is simple, effective, and direct. However, it’s not comprehensive from the start. It is packed with many individual grains gunpowder or other propellants that all come together to force it forward.
That’s what the next council must do. It must take all these disparate ideas, perspectives, and needs from their various constituencies, and bring them together to move forward in one, cohesive unit that propels this city forward. Continue reading