"Cowardice asks the question...is it safe? Expediency asks the question...is it politic? Vanity asks the question...is it popular? But conscience asks the question...is it right? And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular but one must take it because it is right." ~Dr. Martin Luther King

Sunday 16 June 2013

Code 0f Ethics 2

A  story sometimes  occupies my mind to the point it must be written before anything else can take its place. 

I don't want to write it. It's long  and full of memories best forgotten . It may notbe particularly   politic

The current Council's discussion of a  Code of ethics last Tuesday triggered the flow  and I know I can't get at that until this one clears. 

A code of Ethics was in place at the time of  the 2003 election.

I registered as a candidate a week before the deadline. Former  Councillor John West  did as well although niether knew of  the other's intent. 

Incumbent Councillor  McEachern promptly withdrew her registration  The media quoted the Councillor had changed her mind after seeing the new names. She preferred spending time with her chilldren.

The latter had always been an option, I took it the  reason the Councillor changed her mind was because she was certain the   electorate's choice  would not  be to her liking. 

I  took the comment to be offensive  from several angles but not worth stewing  about. It did not reflect well upon  the candidate herself and it would be obvious to many as the unkind cut it was . The problem would take care of itself eventually,   if maintained for any length of time.

My younger brother was seriously ill  in Joseph Brant Hospital in Burlington. I received the call on Remembrance Day.  I  spent most days of the election by  his  side. 

I was elected. An incumbent Councilor was the runner-up. 

My brother died. 

The  ex Councillor  had not finished yet, At the last Council meeting  of the previous term, a motion for a re-count  was put forward by herself. 

A re-count is automatic when the difference is  21 votes or less. The  actual count was twice that. 

The person who  normally requests a  re-count is the person who lost out. Not this time. Councillor Mc Eachern urged him , . He refused.  The  Councillor took  the onus  upon herself. 

Despite stated preference  for occupying  time  by spending it with  her children  the  Councillor was not ready to surrender to the electorate's choice. 

A lack of confidence in  voting machines  receommended by the  Municipal Clerk , also Elections Officer, was cited. 

The re-count took three days of staff time. 

Results were the same. 

The machines functioned perfectly fine. 

Little reference was paid to the Code of Ethics then or in the next election. 



Anonymous said...

The story I like best is the one about John Gallo phoning & asking if you would just step aside so he could have your place. Never heard of such a thing before!

Anonymous said...

Canadian Press
Montreal Mayor arrested in his home this morning

Anonymous said...

Aurora's first Integrity Commissioner, David Nitkin, was a professional ethicist.

This in the day of the former's "gold standard."

Little good it did him when his first report following complaints against you were found to be without merit and politically motivated.

The "gold standard" quickly turned to brass following his firing. Apparently his finding did not support the former's opinion, nor that of her henchwoman.

Was that a case of corrupt ethics, or what?

Anonymous said...

Was that the beginning of the abusive late-night missives?

Anonymous said...

The Right Click Tori Floyd
Sun. June 16th
" Cursive writing facing extinction in face of technology "
Cursive writing is not longer an official part of the educational curriculum [ in Ontario ].

Anonymous said...

So the town hired another Integrity Commissioner, one David Tsubouchi, lawyer and former provincial Conservative party hack.

He had to deal with further complaints lodged against you by a fellow councillor.

His finding was that you should have to pay for your "crime" and instead of delivering this verdict in private he stated it publicly during a council meeting. This was objected to rather bitingly by an ethical councillor.

The first Integrity Commissioner was fired.

The second one was going to face the same end from the newly elected council but elected to resign before the axe fell.

Thus the Code of Conduct, in all its golden intent, including meting out punishment, saw two Integrity Commissioners come and go, one for the wrong reason, the other for the right.

But now the Code is no more and councillors get to bargain and pontificate on a Code of Ethics.

How many of us wonder why all this is necessary? Surely adults exercising a medium amount of intelligence can figure out what's right and wrong.

Events of the past several weeks in Canadian politics have led there to be coined a new phrase:


Anonymous said...

@ 8:28 AM
I didn't realize he had been around so long. It is funny when he refers to himself as being " re-elected ".

Not sure what you should say when you were appointed the first time.
But it isn't re-election.

Anonymous said...

5:41 PM...

What is failed to report here (because it colours the argument), Gallo was appointed because he attained the most votes of those that did not get elected. It was not a case of Mor-Mac Invc. going to a list and picking him.

Anonymous said...

7:54 AM
All that has been said is that he was not re-elected. Nothing about how it happened which certainly would ' colour ' an argument if there were one. which there wasn't.

Anonymous said...

Political Points
Andy Radia
" Is Stephen Harper a poor judge of character ? "

Something Fishy in Aurora said...

@7:54 am

There were options available when Mrs. Marsh resigned her seat. Seems a majority of towns folk wanted a By-election held instead of appointment. Appointing the #9 position (first loser so to speak) was also an available option.

Council decision with Summary of emails by residents.


YorkRegion.com article.

Anonymous said...

But, 7:54 AM, don't you think that MorMac wouldn't have opposed a byelection if they hadn't perceived the ninth-placed council candidate to be sympathetic to their agenda?

Anonymous said...

11:14 AM

What does that have to do with whether he was "re-elected" or not? Technically under the bylaws and Municipal Act he was appointed by virtue of being the next highest elected.

Anonymous said...

12:46 PM
Hey. You are always lecturing us about being accurate. He was not re-elected. That word was used in a specific way. Period. The rest of the comments you brought onto your own head. Have a nice afternoon.

Anonymous said...

But, 12:46 PM, he didn't need to be "the next highest elected" (BTW, he wasn't "elected," technically or otherwise - 9th place ain't elected). Anyone, even someone who hadn't run in the previous election, could have been appointed.

A by-election was too much of a crapshoot for MorMac, the result was out of their control. That's why they opposed that option and favoured the appointment of a like-minded individual.

Anonymous said...

"BTW, he wasn't "elected," technically or otherwise - 9th place ain't elected"

You're right, bu he also got more votes than you did!

Anonymous said...

... and you're right, too, 12:42 PM - but then, I wasn't on the ballot.

Anonymous said...

To: 2:29 PM

But, he had the balls to run and to put up with the nitpicking from couch-potato wanna-be councillors.

Anonymous said...

3:37 PM, don't be so hard on yourself.