The video following is VOTES Chairman, Bill Longworth's, presentation to Oshawa City Council on November 26, 2007.
As the title suggests, Mr. Longworth was calling on Oshawa City Council to direct Oshawa's Auditor General to conduct an audit on City Hall's communication, information, and education efforts to prepare Oshawa voters for the General Vote Plebiscite.
In the video, Mr. Longworth makes mention of the Mayor's public comments that the city had no responsibility to communicate information to the public about the plebiscite question. This is amazing since Oshawa purportedly asked the question to get an informed opinion about the issue from Oshawa voters. How can you get an informed opinion if people do not understand the question and city council refuses to provide information to them.
The only information we have about why the question was asked was a news report of Councillor Pidwerbecki, the guy who loudly insisted the plebiscite was democratic you will recall, and well after the plebiscite was held gave a very poorly thought-out explanation to the press. His actual answers have been dramatically satirized in a video. His answers and council's whole plebiscite process was designed to "snow" the people to implement an electoral system that would be self-serving to incumbents to secure their political careers till their death or resignation.
If you thought that the political system was to serve the people...guess again---because Oshawa politicians led by Mayor Gray and Councillors Pidwerbecki, Kolodzie, Parkes, Henry, Sholdra, and Marimpietri have proven by their votes in support of the general vote that they believe it should serve them...be damned the people!
As we noted in an earlier post
Wording the question in terms of a "general vote" is a concept that most people would not understand since it was not defined anywhere and is not part of people's daily experience. While its meaning is as elementary to politicians as "galactosylceramide lipoidosis" or "zalcitabine" or "palmar fibromatosisis" is to medical doctors...the meaning is not easily understood unless you are in the field.And so how did Oshawa Council handle Bill's request? Just as expected! Page 584 on the Nov. 26, 2007 Council minutes shows...
How would you feel if your family doctor said you needed a Cholecystectomy and then offered you a choice of laparoscopic or open...and refused to define the terms and give you the advantages/disadvantages of each? Wouldn't you get rid of him? Even worse, what if he didn't even tell you about the surgery and just wheeled you in and did it?
This is similar to what the politicians did with the plebescite question. They refused to give you information and just wheeled you into the voting booth for your "X" on a weighted question...irresponsible, undemocratic, and unprincipled.
They deserve the same fate as a doctor who would refuse you required information. Get rid of them!
15. Bill Longworth - Request to address Committee to request that City Council direct Oshawa's Auditor General to perform an audit on how well the City of Oshawa carried out its responsibilities in informing the public concerning the plebiscite question during the 2006 Municipal ElectionNow isn't it amazing that they have referred FUTURE referendum questions to the Accountability and Transparency Committee to develop a framework. The last referendum that I recall was almost 25 years ago.
Recommendation (LOST AND REFERRED)
That Correspondence FA-07-198, dated October 19, 2007, from Bill Longworth requesting that City Council direct Oshawa's Auditor General to perform an audit on how well the City of Oshawa carried out its responsibilities in informing the public concerning the plebiscite question during the 2006 Municipal Election be received for information.
16. Referendum Questions
That any future referendum questions be referred to the Accountability and Transparency Sub-Committee to develop a framework.
This is really sweeping the serious problem with the recent plebiscite under the rug.
These "OPTICS" of "ACTION" will not fool anyone!