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The Article

Sanctimonious busybodies impose own agenda on city

“Totalitarian thoughts have taken roots in the minds of pseudo-intellectuals everywhere”
—George Orwell, author of 1984

Well, I would not describe the fanatical types who campaigned to break the word of Calgary city council on the smoking issue as intellectuals—of any shape or form.

In my mind—and I do not smoke—they are intolerant, sanctimonious busybodies with time on their hands who want to impose their personal agendas on the community at large.

Individuals who don’t give a darn or a damn about the democratic process.

To some critics, they are pettifogging popinjays who see nothing wrong in breaking council’s word.

Council assured our city’s bar, restaurant, casino and bingo hall community that smoking under stringent restrictions would be allowed in their establishments until Jan. 1, 2008.

The owners foolishly took them at that word.

But that wasn’t good enough for the anti-smoking types on council, or the likes of the the supercilious Calgary MLA David Rodney, or the publicity hound, Robyn Hefferton.

No, these individuals charged ahead and forced council to break its word and ban smoking as of Jan. 1, this coming year.

And its all smiles and guffaws from those who seemingly believe they have a right to tell private citizens what they can and can not do.

Rodney—in my mind a ‘Conservative by convenience’ who should really be sitting in the ranks of the socialist New Democrats—claimed he was taking away no one’s rights.

The mountain-climber must have surely mastered Orwell’s DoubleSpeak techniques.

He and his municipal compatriots have taken away the rights of businessmen, who have their invested their life savings, to run their bars and restaurants as they see fit.

Coincidentally, Rodney tried to foist his nanny-state concepts on his provincial Progressive Conservative colleagues who promptly put the rookie MLA in his place.

The seeming leader of the cabal who betrayed council’s commitments to restaurant and bar owners is Ald. Diane Colley-Urquhart, who also professes to be a Conservative, but appears to be in reality a promoter of Big Government pounding its hammer on individuals who can’t fight back.

So much compassion, Diane.

Now, I want to say every single member of council is community-minded and when they are dealing with planning, transportation, budgetary problems or whatever they try to give these issues the best.

No doubt about that.

Even that non-council member, the insufferable Hefferton, surely has a right to be a tireless and tiresome self-promoter.

But what is so frightening is in a city of solid Conservative and free enterprise values, our city council has been hijacked by the Liberal-Left—though why they call it the ‘Liberal-Left’ when there is nothing open-minded about the Liberal-Left anywhere in North America beats me.

Colley-Urquhart and her coterie of Bob Hawkesworth, Madeleine King. Druh Farrell and Joe Ceci finally pulled on their side the likes of Dale Hodges, Craig Burrows, Andre Chabot, Helene Larocque and Barry Erskine.

Make a note of these names now—and recall them come the next municipal election.

Standing by council’s early commitments and promises were Mayor Dave Bronconnier, and Ald. Ric McIver, Linda Fox-Mellway, Gord Lowe and Ray Jones. These five are men and women of very high calibre, so recall their names, too, come the next municipal election. They deserve our esteem.

The members not of the aforementioned Liberal-Left, but to my mind of the Hard-Left, insist moving the ban up one year while allowing bars and restaurants with a fully-separate and ventilated room to operate until Jan. 1, 2008 was a “compromise” solution. What a sham.

Anti-smoking proponents insist 80% of Calgarians do not smoke, so a true compromise solution would have been to allow the bar and restaurant owners to decide themselves whether to accommodate this seemingly large market or put their establishment in a a straitjacket of serving only 20% of the market.

But that solution is too democratic—smacks of too much freedom—for those who have hijacked our rights on council and their supporters.


Paul Jackson
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