The greater the ignorance the greater the dogmatism


Below are two contrasting views by way of an editorial and a letter to the editor dealing with municipal governance as it relates to our economy here in the Pass that appeared in the same newspaper this week…

Editorial by Joni MacFarlane
Crowsnest Promoter

Mystified by priorities

Of all the recommendations in the Mayor’s Task Force on the Economy, it’s mystifying why council chose all things fire-related as one of their first orders of business.

The task force, set up in the early stages of this council’s term, contains many proposals that seem far more critical than those of firefighting.

In fact, the very first strategy outlined in the report is to “adopt a community economic development model”, including the establishment of an advisory committee and the hiring of an Economic Development Officer (EDO).

It took over two years to set up the committee – who’ve yet to have a meeting and have been postponed until May – and an EDO is still not being actively recruited.

True there has been news on the economic front, but one is a long way off and another is limited on the job front.

The proposed reactivation of coal mining will, eventually, be an economic balm to the community but it had nothing to do with political will and everything to do with the collision of natural resources and market forces.

The proposed hotel complex will also benefit the community by putting a fresh face on an aging eye-sore and providing a nice way-stop for travelers and visitors. But as anyone who’s waited tables, flipped burgers, or made beds will tell you, these aren’t jobs on which to buy a home or raise a family easily.

Rather than developing a strategy and action plan to attract business, the legacy of this council will be the reshaping of the fire department.

Instead of focusing on jobs and the economic health of the community, we’ve had a council spend an inordinate amount of time and energy dealing with fire halls, fireworks and firefighters.

Such a priority is baffling.


Now for the Letter to the Editor:

Open letter to CNP residents


I’ll leave it to my readers to decide for themselves which of these two (editorial or the letter to the editor) speaks the truth with respect to good municipal governance as it relates to our economic development (or lack of because of misguided priorities and incompetence), and which knows not what they’re talking about?


Get all the fools on your side and you can be elected to anything.

from John Prince
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31 Responses to The greater the ignorance the greater the dogmatism

  1. Anonymous says:

    I do think the open letter has some good points to consider.
    And I don’t think they focused on firefighters as in the article. It was mentioned that this dated way back and no one had ever done anything about it. Too much back patting going on I guess.

  2. Peter Rosner says:

    I will go with Joni on this one. The other letter is from people who have a vested interest in whats good for the new fire/rescue service. They dont mind that the volunteer firemen got shafted things worked out well for their son-in-law on the rescue squad.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Well to be fair, I think everyone has a vested interest in something around here; relatives, etc. Not just the writer.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Aren’t they still doing “hard work” writing the Terms of Reference for the EDO committee?

    I thought cleaning the place up was supposed to be a priority. We still have the industrial wastelands and the rusting equipment and decaying RiverRun signs on the slackpile. I haven’t seen any improvement in Community Standards, despite the statistics issued by the CPOs. What will visitors think of our new $200,000 entrance signs bracketing the same old dumpyness?

    The first thing a good EDO will do is tell Council to clean the place up.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Of all the priorities they have been working on, their biggest accomplishments are the new policies, new by-laws and new regulations. (New pickup trucks?) This is what our Mayor calls “heavy lifting.” The rest will be left to others. Of course, if something does not materialize, like the mythical jamboree, the mythical hotel investor, or the mythical Quebec manufacturer, one can always blame the Ratepayers. There are no mirrors in “our house.”

  6. Anonymous says:

    George Marlyn Machum DUMB DEF AND BLIND

  7. Anonymous says:

    I have seen lots of cleanup in my area. It doesn’t happen overnight.
    Some people just don’t want to see any good and just keep pounding away. After a while people won’t even listen.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Bravo Joni, intellegent and well written. As for the other letter – I agree with Peter.

  9. Anonymous says:

    If someone has their own opinion, they are Dumb, Def (original spelling) and blind. Unbelievable and so short-sighted.
    Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Being mature is listening to more than one opinion.

  10. Anonymous says:

    The proof is in the pudding. Ask yourselves if we are better off today than 2 years ago.I lost some weight because my wallet is lighter.Other than that has anything positive really changed?You can change policies and bylaws and do the “heavy lifting”but there is no material change.So maybe it is about the future.Are businesses now going to come here because of the changes to the fire department or the peace officers or is it the bylaws(that are not being enforced)?I doubt it?I think almost everyone would have agreed that the thing most needed in the CNP was economic development.This council gets an “F” in this department to date but they have one more semester to turn that around.Over 2 years into their term and the only jobs created by this council are the new employees hired by the town.

  11. Anonymous says:

    to anon 7:30 even if you put lipstick on a pig its still just a pig i thought you didnt allow people to be called names on your blog to anon 5:21 it is their opinion on how things are run here name calling is childish

  12. Anonymous says:

    Yes, agree. Name calling is plain and simple a bullying tactic, and needs to be shunned by all of us.

  13. Tell people they are way of base, out of touch with reality, or just plain wrong, make your arguments.
    Nobody needs to be calling names or be called names.
    The wonderful thing about democracy is we all have a right to an opinion which means at times we may disagree.

    Dean Ward

  14. Anonymous says:

    Was it name calling or was it an expressed opinion… bluntly put.

  15. Anonymous says:


    name calling, what do you think…

  16. Anonymous says:

    Can you spell bait and switch? Is this not what the last few comments here are all about? Get back on topic, why don’t you.

  17. Judy says:

    I think if our “governance” gets in for another four years, we won’t have anything left to govern at all. They will spend us right into the ground. Actually I fear they already have.

  18. Anonymous says:

    I think your right Judy, and I think John is right also. I’ve thought about it for a couple of days, and if we don’t all back the same guys during the election, our vote will be split and the “silent majority” won’t need to be a “majority” at all, just a consolidated minority. We’d better watch out, and if we don’t play our cards right, we better be content to be treated like the bad little “boys and girls” that we are being treated like right now.


  19. Anonymous says:

    Anon 5:39 said
    I have seen lots of cleanup in my area. It doesn’t happen overnight.
    Some people just don’t want to see any good and just keep pounding away. After a while people won’t even listen.

    I’m in NE Blairmore. There was some voluntary compliance when the Bylaw Officer was putting red stickers on junkers, but nothing since the Peace Officers started. Where are you? Tell me where I can “see any good”.

    The Hotel promoters said they would keep the trees to shield guests from the junkyard across the tracks, so I guess there is no plan to clean that up.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Personally, all this junk was lying around when I moved here, and I’m kinda attached to it. It’s part of the charm and quirkiness of these towns. Watch what you wish for. I think we’re already getting a taste of that since the last election. Maybe some of this stuff is part of our “history” and we should just embrace it? Why is all this stuff here? Has anybody ever asked? Might be a few good stories there? Am I crazy? Or is the CNP just rubbing off on me?

    Should I post this? Ah…here goes….


  21. Anonymous says:

    When you say DUMB DEF AND BLIND AND it true you are just making a statement not name calling tank .

  22. Anonymous says:

    Let’s give credit, where credit is due.

    George and Marilyn Machum, and others like them, who stick their “NAME” out there, are very brave.


  23. Anonymous says:

    I’m with Joni on this one.


  24. Anonymous says:

    This is the worst council in recent memory. All the “heavy lifting” is policy work. Should have seen it coming. If you put a bureaucrat in charge and don’t give him any political supervision, he will do what comes naturally, until it becomes “Naturally Rewarding.”

  25. Anonymous says:

    PLM, were do you live? (I hope I am not your neighbour). You may have provided the lowest cost solution to one of our major problems. After this most endearing junk is dumped on your property, please feel free to enjoy the ‘charm’. I am sure you would not mind that after the glow we cover it with the mess scraped up and piled from the River Run fiasco.

  26. Anonymous says:

    9:03, I guess we just look at things differently, I choose to focus on the beauty of this area, have you ever noticed the beautiful lupines and other flowers that have taken over the River Run area? They’re gorgeous. I really don’t notice the junk. I’m too busy breathing the air here, and gazing up at the mountains and the sunsets, and the wonderful full moons. Why don’t you just build a big fence around your yard and STAY in it!


  27. Anonymous says:

    Beauty begins in one’s own back yard. I understand your point but I refuse to live in in a place like the Calgary landfill where the ‘lupines bloom gorgeous and the sunsets and full moon are no different than here’. My neighbours and myself live in a co-existance that I feel would never be be realized anywhere else. I am greatfull.

    I welcome you to the CNP. Now let’s clean it up.

  28. Anonymous says:

    I’m sure you would be happy to be one of my neighbours, although, I cannot take credit for that, that would be my partners doing. I only hope that we will always be physically, and financially, and mentally, able to keep it that way. I’m just worried about trying to “legislate” the mess away. That’s just not going to work. I will lead by example, but I will never rush in and push my standards on anyone else. There is a “reason” for these messes, and unless we figure that out, they are never going to go away. Well, enough for now, I should go help my partner with the yard work!


  29. Anonymous says:

    I am commenting on the bravery of the Machum letter. They can be brave because they have a pack of guard dogs that will rip you personally and figuratively to shreds if you dare to question anything they write. I would be brave too if I had people to back me that have no respect or manners towards other people’s opinion.

  30. Anonymous says:


    Guard Dogs? Yikes! Well, I guess I won’t question anything they write. I will only disagree with them…..ooops, is that the same thing? Better wrap myself up in some layers of sheets or something….just in case!


  31. Anonymous says:

    I have a sneaky (creepy?) feeling that I may have been wrong here. My spider sense (I don’t know what else to call it, clairvoyance? tuned-in ness?) is telling me that these messes will be dealt with in the next 7 months. A great “POWER” is going to make them disappear. Let’s see if I’m right?!


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