Tuesday, 26 October 2010

Play time for the rich

So here we are - the day after the election that saw a new mayor, six incumbents defeated and four new councillors elected as a result of retirements. A total of 11 new faces around a table of 24.

Most encouraging for Labour, a number of other organizations and the majority of residents is the defeat of Larry O'Brien. To be sure this election was more about those who believe Larry did a terrible job while in office.

With accuracy it can be stated that most don't know the half of it. The emails, the phone calls, the visits to councillors offices, the one on one conversations with several staff and discussions with others that transcended everything a mayor ought not to say, ought not to be.

I'm not a politician and although I can play the game I'm reluctant to sugar coat what was - and what was, was that Larry O'Brien in my opinion and I suggest in the opinion of many others, was Ottawa's worst mayor.

He had absolutely no clue how to govern and quite frankly if Larry O'Brien or anyone else ran a company the way he attempted to run city hall the bankruptcies in this city would skyrocket.

There was nothing positive accomplished by Larry during his tenure despite his claims to the contrary. We do not have a new transit system. We do not have a new Lansdowne Park and any of the heavy lifting on this file was done by Rick Chiarelli and Peter Hume. Larry was certainly not responsible for any attempts at cleaning up the Ottawa River - that was both Peter Hume and Jim Watson and if not for people like Bob Chiarelli and Jim Durrell there would be no convention centre.

It became clear during this election that residents and riders alike put the blame for the transit strike squarely and directly on Larry's shoulders and rightfully so. His admitted alpha personality became all too important during the strike and any consideration for the riders, residents, businesses or the workers here became secondary.

His attempt at placing blame on his trial for his ineffectiveness is nonsense. Other people - public figures - have endured much greater stressors. If so innocent why worry so much?

He claimed he was an ideas man. Ideas are a dime a dozen - the implementation of ideas priceless. Something Larry was never able to comprehend.

This was a game for Larry - play time for the rich. As a result our city paid the price and will continue to pay the price for many years to come.