Posted January 18, 2014
In just 15 days, the Farbridge trolls have emerged from their pre-election hibernation to attack the credibility of guelphspeaks and a number of other citizens who understand the city is a financial basket case.
The attacks come in waves with twisting and bending the facts to suit the troll agenda.
Most use pseudonyms or first names only. They fiercely support the Farbridge administration with some, piously, claiming they are not affiliated. They’re all from the same barrel spouting the same party line. It’s organized and orchestrated by a minority group of Farbridge supporters, determined to ensure her re-election.
It’s as if nothing bad has happened since former Mayor Kate Quarrie was defeated in 2006. That’s when this same bunch launched personal attacks on Quarrie and destroyed her credibility with lies and misrepresentation.
This year it is a little different. The Farbridge gang has to defend a shaky and misguided administration that is old and tired. Even the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing officials admitted that the numbers, showing financial mismanagement, contained in the GrassRoots Guelph’s four-page petition, were accurate.
This petition was developed by expert financial analysts and vetted by legal counsel. It is interesting that the contents were flatly denied by the Mayor within hours of the release. Perhaps a trifle premature?
The message from the Farbridge trolls is that the cost of an independent audit will be in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. A statement carrying no basis of fact. When more than $100 million has been spent or wasted by this administration, depending on your point of view, spending money to fix it seems penny-ante in comparison. It’s also necessary.
Then the credibility of those opposed to the administration policies is attacked with name calling, accusations of lying, not knowing the facts, not qualified to comment or not being reliable sources of information.
It’s a technique well-honed over time. History, as we know, repeats itself. Prior to and during World War II, the fascists bent the truth so well, by exploiting their agenda, that millions of people died because of it. When the iron curtain came down, the Soviet communists worked the same gig, selling their determination to control the world with central planning, brute force, and lies.
Is this starting to ring a bell?
The technique is to gain complete control of the people, their systems and their governance. Then, exploit the people’s resources to carry out costly programs that reflect the idealism of the party’s central control.
This is why in the past seven years the Farbridge administration has retained absolute control over our civic government. While political control is a necessity, it also requires a non-elected coterie to support its exclusive franchise to “tax and spend.”
It has resulted in an abuse of democracy in which a minority gains power over the majority that were lulled by manicured propaganda.
Here are some samples on how the truth gets trampled by doctrinaire ideology.
Let’s play truth or consequences
Truth: The $34 million compost processing plant was built to a capacity that is three times the needs of the city for the next 20 years.
Consequences: Guelph taxpayers are paying for a plant that is not operating to planned capacity. The cost of operation has never been revealed. Its only customer, The Region of Waterloo, cannot meet its contracted target of 20,000 tonnes of wet waste annually. Guelph Waste Management brags that the Region must pay for 20,000 tonnes a year whether they use it or not. Then Guelph announces they are going to sell the Region’s capacity to other municipalities. Isn’t there something morally wrong here? But can they explain why the taxpayers of Guelph are underwriting the costs of this operation built to service other municipalities? Morality has been a stranger with this administration.
Truth: In 2012, an independent study said Guelph shipped 48,000 tonnes of waste to the landfill or about 47 per cent of all collected waste.
Consequences: To suggest that the administration is operating under provincial mandate to divert waste from the landfill is a lie. Why did the city waste management sign a new deal with Waste Management Corp to send its landfill waste to a site 180 kms away? The city refuses to collect garbage from some 6,400 Guelph households. More condo units are coming on stream. This only increases the volume of unsorted garbage flowing to the landfill.
Not True: The province mandated that Guelph had to install a $15 million cart-based collection system. One of the better outright lies.
Consequences: Originally, the province did ban plastic bags going into the organics plant. Then it announced that biodegradable plastic bags were permissible and then available. Council ignored this and bought the cart system when all it had to do was convert to the biodegradable plastic bags at little or no cost. Perhaps the cart-system salesmen were more persuasive.
How can the Farbridge trolls keep a straight face defending the administration’s record of mistakes, secrecy, lying, and loading up city debt by paying too much for too little?
The elephant in the room the Farbridge people don’t want to talk about is the high cost of city employees. Does it take more than 2,065 employees (2012) to run a city of 127,000 residents? Should rapidly rising employee costs consume 80 per cent of total revenues? The growing employee pension and benefit liability to taxpayers will be staggering for your children, their children and their children, and beyond.
Do you really think Guelph is on the right track?
That’s what the trolls would like you to believe.
We’re not in Kansas anymore, Toto. This is the end of the rainbow.