the elephant in the room


This week has been an interesting one for bloggers here in Aurora.

Over at the AuroraCitizen councilor Evelyn Buck is on the hot seat for the figure she quoted for the cost of the recount she posted on her blog.

On Tuesday night Bill Hogg was heckled by an outgoing councilor Evilina MacHecron, in the council chambers while a council meeting was in session.

And then I went and dropped the c-bomb here on my blog and all the fuddyduddies’ panties over on the Aurora Citizen got tied in an even tighter knot.

After reading the numerous comments there to all of these points I’m left shaking my head.

“Oh the atrocities!”

“Why won’t anyone think of the children?”

If the comments, which most of are anonymous, are genuine, and I would expect they are not, then the only response I have is: is everyone all to happy to ignore the obvious here?

Not satisfied with her first inquisition of Bill Hogg when he spoke at Open Forum some months ago where she interrupted and proceeded to grill Mr. Hogg as to his involvemnet with the AuroraCitizen blog, Evilina referred to Mr. Hogg at Tuesday’s council meeting as “Mr. Aurora Citizen”.

What was the point of this?

Bill Hogg was recently sued for his alleged involvement in the AuroraCitizen.
The other two individuals who have been sued have been wrongfully accused as to their involvement. 

Even this wasn’t enough for Evilina, as she stormed out of the council chambers during a short recess to approach Mr. Hogg who I was in the middle of a conversation with to berate him further, saying that she did not appreciate “allegations”.

Could MacHekron be any more of a hypocrite?

To say Evilina has issues is an understatement.  I had to agree with Mr. Hoggs calm and collected response where he stated his disappointment and disbelief that someone like Evilina who has spent several years on council either doesn’t understand, or wish to uphold procedural bylaw.

Having no response to this she simply tucked her tail between her legs and whimpered back over to the other half of MorMac.

As for the cost of the recount Evelyn quotes a figure of $25,000.  The town clerk (I’m sorry but I can’t call the man by his idiotic re-org title: Director of customer service) estimated $6,500.  Mr Leech’s figure did not take into account staff’s time, which I assume would account for the offset in Evelyn’s figure.

A handful of people interviewed by Rogers were unanimous in their response to the question “is the use of $6500 to conduct a recount a good use of taxpayer’s money?”

The answer, of course, was no.  I guess in a way that could be considered a unanimous “recorded vote”.

The same group that voted against a by-election because the cost could be upwards of $10,000 are the same ones that voted in favor of spending 2/3 of this on a recount.

This group of hypocrites is of course the gang-of-six.

After posting my observations of the night in my usual manner of combining issues with humor, I chose to use a play on words.

A handful of people who visit my blog (by their own choosing) decided to comment over on the AuroraCitizen that I’m mean, vulgar, disgusting.  One or two even wrote to say they were putting their cursors down in protest, never to read my blog again.

Hah, I seriously doubt that.  In fact Google Analytics will prove that those same people will be reading my blog again, possibly even right now.

The audience that my blog attracts returns for two things: to hear the truth and to have a laugh.

Humor is about storytelling and finding a way of projecting a truth in a funny way.  The connection comes because the audience relates to that truth. 

Just because someone doesn’t like the tone or language doesn’t make it any less funny, or any less true.

When you cross humor with politics you often run into the same problems political cartoonists face and that is the group of people that make up the characters in the story are often individuals who have chosen to uphold a position of public office.  With that decision is an understanding that these people should have thick skins.

Instead what is often the case you end up facing a bunch of whiny children that have thin skins and thick heads.

When critics grow in numbers, there is no longer an opportunity to ignore them.  Failure to investigate the source of the criticism and instead spending energy to silence it under claims of “defamation” can be exhausting, to some it can be hell.

I’m quite fond of the 33rd President of the United States, Harry S Truman’s observation on this when he said:

“I never give them hell. I just tell the truth and they think it’s hell.”

While we’re on the topic of individuals who find themselves in a hell of their own making but continue to deny what is happening, it wouldn’t be right to leave out the outgoing Mayor’s comments regarding her future aspirations, especial when they include possibly, maybe, not sure, who knows, maybe not wanting to start her own blog.

You can read more on page 3 of this week’s Auroran, I have included it here:

Download this file

An interesting choice given our mayor first refused to acknowledge that blogs existed, then she employed town staff to monitor them, then she had letters from town staff issued to remove comments and finally sue 3 citizens that contribute to blogs.

Did anyone know that Phyllis had a “passion for writing”?  Does this extend to anything outside writing snide remarks or legal documents?  If so, exactly how can she claim to inject “integrity” into whatever she writes.

If Phyllis had the passion she claims it is curious as to why she abandoned the opportunity to write the weekly Mayor’s column in the Auroran

What a farce.

Let’s hope that in her “information gathering phase” she doesn’t turn to her fellow councilor and sycophant Wendy Gaertner who also had something equally bizarre to write in this week’s Auroran.

“many of us don’t understand what damage can be done by anonymous comments made in the blogosphere. I think out of respect for everybody on council, everybody on staff, everybody in the community, that we need to decide what
can and cannot be allowed in the new social media. Social media is a whole new territory.”

“we need to decide what can and cannot be allowed in the new social media”


You are going to decide what can and can’t be allowed in social media?

Wendy, either outline exactly how you plan to accomplish overhauling an information revolution or get over yourself and get on with the job you were elected to do.

New territory?  Where have you been over the past ten years?  Oh that’s right, watching your “Hot Spot” collapse from your inability to connect with the town’s youth and failure to ensure enough participation from local businesses to make it viable.

Your continued attempts to correct councilor Buck are inappropriate and only reinforce both your naivate and ignorance.

You can read the rest of her drivel here:

Download this file

After we finish cleaning up all the bullshit from this last term of council I guess we’re going to have to look after the elephant shit too.

Some of it seems to have got stuck to the shoes of some of our incoming councilors.

Perhaps erecting the following sign at the entrance to council chambers will be a start.




Watts on your mind?

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