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Scripturient: Rules for The Block, different rules for us

Ever apply to sit on a town board or committee? If so, you’ll be familiar with the form to the right. It’s the town’s application form. Click on it to see or download the full form. Everyone who wants to sit on a town board of committ… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Rules for The Block, different rules for us

Scripturient: Misleading mouthpieces

Contrary to what you might expect, I am not surprised that the Enterprise Bulletin recently printed a letter replete with disinformation and disingenuous claims from someone who might be best described as one of The Block’s more rabid mouthpiece… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Misleading mouthpieces

Scripturient: Uncommunicative again

Did you receive your “spring” newsletter from the town? The one delivered on the first day of summer (or later), lacking any actual news… yes, that one. To me it appears as clumsily formatted and poorly written as all the previous iss… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Uncommunicative again

Scripturient: More relevant words from Nixonland

Once again, as I continue to read through Anthony Summers’ biography of Richard Nixon, The Arrogance of Power (Penguin Books, 2000), I am struck by the uncanny resonance of many comments quoted within it to local politics. It’s like people … . . . → Read More: Scripturient: More relevant words from Nixonland

Scripturient: The accomplishments of council

“You really are negative about our council,” the woman said to me as I stood in the grocery store, trying to decide whether to converse or pick mushrooms from the bin. But she insisted on the former. “Your blog is always about the bad… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: The accomplishments of council

Scripturient: Alger Hiss, Richard Nixon and Collingwood

Remember the case of Alger Hiss? I didn’t think so. It was before your time. Mine too. But let me jog your memory, just in case you’re older than I am. Or perhaps just well read in recent history. Hiss was a US government employee, a diplom… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Alger Hiss, Richard Nixon and Collingwood

Scripturient: Power, naked ambition, and corruption

No matter how many times you watch the film, Titanic, the ending is always the same: the ship hits the iceberg. Sort of like watching Collingwood Council these days. They just keep hitting the iceberg. And hitting it and hitting it and hitting it. But … . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Power, naked ambition, and corruption

Scripturient: Yellow Journalism

Here’s an interesting approach to developing good relations with your print media advertisers: take their money, publish their full-colour advertisement, then challenge their content, their integrity and their claims in a story that doesn&#8217… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Yellow Journalism

Scripturient: The 50% Solution

Imagine you want to go out for dinner with a friend. Get some wings and beer. You like mild dry rub wings, and a nice, crisp lager. Your friend likes sticky and spicy, with a dark stout. The restaurant will bring out the food and drinks split accordin… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: The 50% Solution

Scripturient: The Leadership Crisis

In his latest book, The Leadership Crisis, Gord Hume defines seven characteristics – the Seven Cs – of great political leadership*. See how many you can recognize as attributes within our own council: Competencies, including people, organiz… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: The Leadership Crisis

Scripturient: The CAO’s expenses

Earlier this year, I filed a Freedom of Information (FOI) Act request to see the expense records of Collingwood’s Interim CAO for 2015 and 2016 to the end of March. You can read these records by clicking on the links above. Let me start by saying… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: The CAO’s expenses

Scripturient: Two conferences and a show

I had the honour and the enjoyment of attending two municipal conferences last week. While no longer directly involved in politics, I am able to keep my finger in some of the political pies through my current work for an NGO. Plus, I like to remain inf… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Two conferences and a show

Scripturient: Banning Phosphorus

In 2014, Toledo experienced a water crisis that caused the city to issue a “do not use” warning for more than 500,000 residents. They had to rely on bottled water; boiling wasn’t safe because it further released toxins into the water…. . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Banning Phosphorus

Scripturient: The stench of entitlement

You’d think politicians would learn from the recent investigations into Senate spending and the Mike Duffy trial, that Canadians have no tolerance for the gimme, gimme, gimme of politicians. Canadians don’t like the smell of a sense of ent… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: The stench of entitlement

Scripturient: Killing gnats with grenades

Collingwood Council has taken the equivalent approach of a grenade attack to swat at a little gnat. It has launched a full-frontal assault on people feeding wildlife in order to get a couple of people in town to stop feeding feral cats. And of course i… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Killing gnats with grenades

Scripturient: Amateur layout and bad ads. Again.

I see the Town of Collingwood is still letting the EB layout its full page of ads in the paper. Tragic. Embarrassing. Cringe-worthy. The latest back page mashup has as its first ad the worst of the worst sort of ad layout, the sort only amateurs wou… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Amateur layout and bad ads. Again.

Scripturient: Peter, Parkinson and Adams

C. Northcote Parkinson, Lawrence J. Peter, and Scott Adams are for me the ‘holy trinity’ of philosophers of modern bureaucracy, within both the public service and the corporate structure. As philosophers, they are all keen observers and wi… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Peter, Parkinson and Adams

Scripturient: Demagogues and democracy

“I just wish, at some point in time, councillors would show a little more integrity or credibility on the floor of council… It’s like every time we try to do something, there’s criticism, no matter what we do. I’d like to … . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Demagogues and democracy

Scripturient: Why? A few questions for councillors

Why? Councillor Madigan said he had written that on every page of the report about Collus, presented to council last week by lawyer Mark Rodger. After reading the report, I also have many questions why. It’s a good question. I too, wrote ‘… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Why? A few questions for councillors

Scripturient: The latest FOI emails examined

One hundred and seventy pages of email correspondence between the town’s interim CAO, John Brown, and the Collus/Powerstream CEO, Ed Houghton, from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, , 2015, were recently released to the public as the result of a Freedom of Inf… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: The latest FOI emails examined

Scripturient: Collingwood’s broken committee system, part 2

Back in early 2015, I wrote that the experimental standing committee structure adopted by council was broken. Well, wouldn’t you know it, a year later, council finally agreed. And they replaced it with… you guessed it: another standing com… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Collingwood’s broken committee system, part 2

Scripturient: Fixing the shared services agreement

First, some history: for 15 years, Collus – now Collus/Powerstream – had a beneficial, mutually-agreed-on and successful agreement with the town to provide services back to the town at reasonable rates. These were things the town did not o… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Fixing the shared services agreement

Scripturient: Master Han Fei’s Wisdom

Long before Niccolo Machiavelli wrote his now-famous work of political philosophy, The Prince, there was another man writing in a similar vein in China. And, like many other sages, his words have important lessons that can prove useful, even today, for… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Master Han Fei’s Wisdom

Scripturient: Betraying the Public Interest

At last Monday’s council meeting, Deputy Mayor Brian Saunderson maneuvered so that interim CAO John Brown was allowed to publicly speak to the question of his contract being extended before any vote was taken. Even before anyone on council had… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Betraying the Public Interest

Scripturient: The $1.2 Million Bird-Flip

Only 16 months into this term and I’m already worn out from saying “I told you so.” I warned you it would get worse just a few weeks ago. And look: IT DID. But you’re not really surprised, are you? The whole thing was choreograp… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: The $1.2 Million Bird-Flip