"Reason is always a kind of brute force; those who appeal to the head rather than the heart, however pallid and polite, are necessarily men of violence. We speak of 'touching' a man's heart, but we can do nothing to his head but hit it." --G.K. Chesterton

Saturday, February 20, 2010

The 'Duffster' drops into Coquitlam

Just to be clear, that's me on the left and Senator Mike Duffy on the right. As does the good senator, I boast an Irish heritage, a background in journalism and a growing enjoyment of political engagement. We exchanged war stories at a small gathering in Coquitlam last night to aid the continuing federal electoral aspirations of Port Moody council member Diana Dilworth--one of the few people at the party over whom Duffy could tower.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Council declines to decide

The saga continues. No, not the Olympics, but Coquitlam council's musings about whether and when it holds a by-election to replace Fin Donnelly.
Council voted unanimously tonight to defer a decision on appointing a Chief and Deputy Chief Election Officer, pending the outcome of a last-ditch meeting that the mayor will have on Friday with (if I heard correctly) the Deputy Minister of Municipal Affairs.
Council is going through the motions of attempting to avoid a by-election, thereby saving $250,000. But the chances are slim and none that council will succeed. A final decision is now expected at the March 1 council meeting.
What all this means, of course, that my own final decision on whether or not to seek a seat on council will have to wait until then. I can't very well run or not run in a by-election that hasn't even been called.
Meantime, there's always the Olympics to take up any spare time I might have. My wife and I were lucky enough to obtain last-minute tickets to the opening ceremonies last week (the above photo was taken from our Row XX seats), and we have men's hockey tickets too. Go Canada Go!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Catching the Olympic spirit

I have just returned from a memorable morning watching the Olympic torch run festivities here in Coquitlam. First up was attending the torch run procession as it passed the intersection of Lansdowne and Guildford, not far from our home. It was a great, enthusiastic and happy crowd, despite the early hour (7 a.m.) and the weather (cool and drizzly).
A personal highlight was when I recognized that an old acquaintance was the torch-bearer: the former Canadian national-team runner Brit Townsend (nee Peterson), who is now the head coach of the SFU track and field team. I had just enough time to shout out a quick hello, which was loud enough to catch Brit's attention.
Next, it was off to the big civic celebration at Mackin Park, where I was able to congratulate an obviously-proud Mayor Richard Steward for the successful event. Two big highlights: former Olympic wrestler Chris Wilson's lighting of the cauldron; and Charles Best secondary's Kristi Blakeway leading the Best Buddies out of the park at the end of the festivities. That's Wilson and me in the photo, above.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Moving closer to the big decision

As we move closer to the Feb. 15 council meeting at which a decision will be made about the looming by-election, I'm also gearing up my decision-making timetable about entering the race. As part of the process, I'm temporarily relinquishing my weekly Face-to-Face column in the Tri-City News. You can read today's piece here. The photo to the right is, of course, the standing headshot that's used to illustrate the column.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

For truth, honesty and accuracy

I'm still getting positive feedback from my last column in the National Post. In case you didn't see it last Thursday, you can check it out here. I think it's about time that more Canadians started demanding accuracy in the reporting of the mainstream news media. Or at least questioning received "wisdom."