Tag Archives: Brian Holstein

Your GuelphSpeaks Weekender

Posted September 20, 2015

About ducks and defeat – Anger and the blogger – Welcome to Canada – That scary NPD elitist manifesto


What’s the difference between Donald Duck and Humpty Dumpty?

One quacks non-stop and the other had a great big fall

With Brian Holstein, the play’s the thing. A dedicated Farbridge supporter, retired teacher and amateur thespian, Holstein paints himself as a self-righteous commentator for the people.

His problem is that he and the former mayor’s supporters just experienced the second defeat of their political ideals and beliefs. First their leader, Karen Farbridge, was thumped at the polls. Then, in April, her pal Susan Watson, complained that former candidate Glen Tolhurst’s election expense statement should be audited.

In August, the Compliance Audit Committee’s own auditor, found Mr. Tolhurst did not contravene the Municipal Elections Act (MEA) as claimed by Watson. He also stated that GrassRoots Guelph (GRG) did not contravene the Act by donating $400 to Mr. Tolhurst’s campaign.

Wow! Two strikes and you’re out Mr. Holstein. People can understand your pain but not your clumsy rhetoric attacking a letter writer for daring to state the truth about the Watson crusade to crucify.

This kind of misguided language and purpose is the main reason that the people voted the Farbridge Party out and the damage done to the city during her eight years in office. You can’t white wash the $23 million new city hall fiasco known as the Urbacon Affair.

Your backbiting column ignores the uncomfortable premise that Susan Watson and her husband donated $4,250 to seven Farbridge candidates. Three others received $550 from two unions.

By any definition that’s a hypocritical premise if there ever was one.

And Susan Watson may have pulled it off by getting the taxpayers to pay some $10,000 for her fruitless attempt to discredit a candidate and a citizens activist group that opposed her friend.

In Holstein’s world that’s what taxes are for.

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The rigours of blogging

There is this guy who accused me of always being angry. He also claimed that GrassRoots Guelph was a secretive conservative organization. Just want viewers to understand where this individual is coming from.

I don’t deny that I am occasionally angry and disappointed in the manner in which our city is being managed.

It’s the stuff that drives citizens crazy such as the increasing tax load on property owners. Our taxes in 12 years have doubled. And what do we get for that? The city refuses to pick up our waste, plow our street or maintain our infrastructure. But we still have to pay taxes for those services that we do not receive.

Instead, as property owners living in a land condominium, we must hire private contractors and pay for such services through condo fees.

So, what’s the catch? For a number of years, the city has allowed these kinds of developments. The number of folks owning property under these conditions is unknown. It is estimated there are more than 6,000 housing units affected in the city denied basic services.

Why do I get angry? Because of this rip-off by the city. It is undemocratic, arbitrary and arrogant. The situation has worsened since the previous administration introduced the bin waste collection system. It allowed a number of high and low-rise developments with no area to store the bins or the electronic-arm truck was unable to maneuver. It was just another excuse not to serve all residents and businesses in the City

So instead of trying to be fair, the administration makes a mockery of it. They ignore a large segment of the population telling it to put up, shut up and pay your taxes.

Again when I see our taxes being wasted on lawsuits and projects that people did not ask for or want, I get angry.

The sad part is I see little change in the way our city is being managed from the top down. Our property taxes this year are among the highest in Ontario with a 3.96 per cent increase. We have a bloated civil service that grows exponentially every year. It is costing 85 per cent of the tax levy and that is unsustainable.

Another increase next year like this one and property values will start to decline and it could be the beginning of an exodus from Guelph, because it costs too much to live here.

Only some common sense can change it. Even that doesn’t count for much these days.

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To Niqab or not to Niqab?

This week the court allowed an immigrant woman from Pakistan to wear the niqab, a covering of the face, during her citizenship swearing in ceremony.

We are a country of immigrants. And the flow of new people to Canada has, over the years, strengthened out role in the world. They bring new ideas, money and energy to their new land and we all benefit.

But when they step onto our land, they become Canadians. Citizenship can be achieved within two years. Their religious, culture and lifestyle contribute to the Canadian mosaic.

The one thing all immigrants must do to assimilate into our society and culture, is not to bring their past loyalties and be part-time Canadians. We speak two official languages here. Immigrants should learn at least one. We have laws that all citizens must obey, including those who are permanent residents but not sworn in and those who are truly Canadian and accept our way of life.

We want new Canadians joining our society but without a lingering loyalty to their homeland or to take advantage of our generous social programs.

Wearing a face covering to the individual’s official citizenship ceremony may be a charter issue as being argured by her lawyer. It remains a simple display of bad manners toward the country she has chosen and is about to officially welcome her.

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Try not to get nervous when the NDP uses the word “manifesto”

Recently a group of 100 NDP elites presented a manifesto to guide the party to the extreme left in the political spectrum. The usual suspects contributed to this document. Here is one sample of its declarations for Canada’s future:

“In the process, the manifesto envisions a transformation of the entire capitalist system into a Utopia in which the economy is in balance with the earth’s limits, jobs are designed to systematically eliminate racial and gender inequality, agriculture is far more localized and ecologically based, and low carbon sectors of the economy, like care giving, teaching, social work, the arts and public interest media flourish.”

Aside from the dreadful grammar and punctuation in the original statement, it has the eerie similarities of the collectivization reign of Josef Stalin and his forced labour schemes and five-year plans. More than six million were killed during his purges of the country’s administrators, artists, non-believors and military.

In October, this document has the potential of destroying the NDP’s chances of becoming Stephen Harper’s successor in Parliament.

With friends like this, who needs enemies?


Filed under Between the Lines