"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

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Time to exercise your franchise

And so, we are now just a week and a half away from the October 26 by-election to elect two new members to Coquitlam Council. Today is marked by two firsts: the first of four advance polls. And the first of two all-candidates meetings.
The advance poll is at the Poirier Sport and Leisure Complex, and runs from 8 a.m.-8 p.m. The next one is Oct. 19 at the Pinetree Community Centre, followed by one on Oct. 23 back at Poirier, and then the final one on Oct. 25 at Pinetree once again. Click here to see all the times and addresses.
On election day proper, you'll be able to cast your vote at any one of 11 polling stations. Click here to see the complete list.
Tonight's all-candidates meeting is at 7 p.m. at the David Lam campus of Douglas College. The second and final all-candidates meeting is tomorrow night at Banting Middle School. Click here for the details.
A healthy voter-turnout is important for many reasons, not the least of which is because it has the positive effect of diluting the impact of the left-wing CUPE electoral machine, which has shown it can deliver a sufficient number of voters to take control of a by-election in which there is a low overall voter turnout. On the other hand, CUPE's impact in a general election is diluted because of the greater voter turnout.
Doug Macdonell and MLA Linda Reimer
And why is keeping the CUPE machine in check important? Simply because I believe that voters should be concerned that an organization with a direct and ongoing financial link to the city (which CUPE has, because it represents more than a thousand workers who are paid by the city) also fields a slate of carefully selected candidates.
Can you imagine the uproar if any other organization with a direct financial link to the city (such as Smithrite, which has a contract to deliver garbage-collection and recycling services to the city) were to field a similar slate of candidates?
For the record, the two CUPE-backed candidates in this election are Chris Wilson and Bonita Zarrillo. Both appear to be strong candidates on their own right, but when Zarrillo asked me if I would endorse her, I said that, on principle, I could not.
On the other hand, I have made public the fact that I have endorsed Doug Macdonell, whose website you can visit by clicking here. I believe that his record of accomplishment during his previous time on council warrants his return.

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