Diary of a councilspotter: They can’t all be golden

Monday, February 13, Executive Committee meeting 16

That controversial TCHC item got punted to a special meeting on Friday, so today’s agenda isn’t very interesting aside from the presentation of the Chong report. It’s hard to work up much excitement for development charges by-laws. Luckily many of the Scoobies are here too, including new guy @oytamarind, and we’re occupying ourselves by surreptitiously passing out City Hall-themed valentines to various councillors, journos, and staffers.

(We’re in the caf when we spot Doug Holyday eating his lunch on the other side of the room and start double-dog-daring each other to go up and give him a couple of valentines. I finally take one for the team, because I broke down in tears in front of the guy at my last deputation and I figure it’s all uphill from there. Adorably, he assumes the Janet Davis one is actually from Janet Davis, because she later says he thanked her for it.

I offer Mary “Best Hair On Council” Fragedakis a Denzil Minnan-Wong valentine and she shoots me down. Ice cold, lady. Ice cold.)

The Chong report is—pardon the term—irrelevant after last week’s transit vote, but I figure the presentation and question period have got to be entertaining, and they are. I’ll say this for Chong, he did the job he was hired to do, and he’s a lively speaker. The report itself is a masterful exercise in dressing up bullshit to fool the uninformed; it reminds me of creationist literature that attempts to prove that the earth is six thousand years old. Gord Perks compares it to promises of pigs flying. At any rate you can only make it look reasonable with a delicate balance of sloppy and outdated data, selective statistics, out-of-context numbers, and pure mendacity. Notably, the report doesn’t offer any actual recommendations, because 1) who wants to sign their name to that shit? and 2) it has to support whatever Team Ford wants it to. It drives Gord Perks and especially Adam Vaughan up a wall—I swear if we weren’t there to make sarcastic asides to, he’d seriously lose it.

(A little digression on Why We Can’t Have Nice Things Subways:

  1. They’re really fucking expensive to build and nobody can pay for them
  2. They want to put them in areas that basically will not be dense enough to run profitably in our lifetimes.

And the niceness of subways cannot override those facts. Shut up and get on the LRT.)

In the end ExComm votes to establish a panel to look into subways, which—you might recall—council already voted to do. Does this mean they’re supporting the status quo? LOL NO, they voted for an entirely redundant second subways panel, which will totally never get past council, so really we could have all gone home and jerked off for four hours and we’d have the same result. It’s just a last noisy crying jag in the extended tantrum Team Ford have been throwing as their grip on power erodes.

There’s still some items to go, but I’m at that point of tiredness and boredom where I’m entertaining myself by Google image searching Mike Del Grande and laughing inwardly (Edit: apparently not so inwardly) how he looks like a hungover owl in like every single photo. Which is a pretty pathetic point to be at, even for a council creeper, so I pack up my computer and head home.

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