Tuesday, October 28, 2014


I needed some comfort food after last night. Luckily, I live near our fine Chinese Restaurant in the Beach.  Now I feel better:

While others in town are whooping it up and slapping each other on their backs over the retaking of the Fort Erie Town Council, lots of us are shocked and saddened over the losses incurred by "our guys."

What is really sad that The Four never got much of a chance to show people that they were committed to bringing responsible, good government to Fort Erie. From Day One they were attacked. The campaign against them carried on non-stop for four years resulting in the outcome of yesterday. It is really sad when the local Chamber of Commerce hierarchy gets right into the battle against representatives elected by the people.  I would think they would be more concerned about business opportunities than revenge against election winners.  The same people who will now run our town put out the false narrative that The Four were anti-development and anti-business mainly because members of the council stood up to the egomaniac who runs the EDTC when he disrespected the taxpayers and council on several occasions.  His bad attitude is well-known but many are afraid of him. (Yeah, I know all about that. I was sued by him with taxpayer money.)  

So, the select group went after The Four and anyone who wanted to keep the Bay Beach Properties in the public's hands. And they really went after The Four. They received a great deal of help from the local newspapers, especially from James Culic of Niagara This Week who never let a chance to bash The Four pass him by.  He must be so proud of himself right now along with Kris Dubé whose close ties to Doug Martin made it impossible for him to be objective.  Other so-called journalists who promised to cover the full story of the conflict of interest lawsuit but got cold feet, probably because they might lose advertisers - the same people who were at the centre of the lawsuit in the first place.  It is all so incestuous that it makes one ill.  And to think, despite all this, this council was able to do a great many good things.  Lowest tax hike in a decade; replenishment of the reserve fund and lots of improvements to the infrastructure. But the people seldom heard about that in the biased press. No, all they heard about was the dissension, mostly caused by a weak mayor who was still smarting over his razor-thin victory over his challenger in 2010. Council meetings turned into sideshows replete with a bunch of high school bullies making loud, insulting remarks from the back of the room.  The mayor let them carry on.

Then there was the Red Ninja blog that took high school bullying to a whole new level. It even employed the camera talents of a local stalker who has a long history of such behaviour.  But, never mind that. He was useful to them as he enjoyed following people around, taking pictures.  Been doing it for years. Police have quite a file on him already.  He particularly likes to harass women.  

So, very honest and capable men were pilloried in their own town by some of their own neighbours. Because?  Because they were committed to keeping the Bay Beach Properties in the public's hands. 

And because they cared enough about their community to put their names in for election; were elected and then tried to do the job they were elected for. 

Sad day indeed.  Thank you to all four of the councillors and good luck to Don Lubberts. The next four years may be, for him, like the plot of Lord of the Flies, but we all know he'll do just fine.

PS. I will continue to call Kim Zanko and Marina Butler the Chamber Maids as that's where they both gor their start and their support.


  1. As a previous poster noted its not that easy to follow the comments regarding various members that were elected and their loyal "teas". We know of Mr. Lubbets and what his troubles stem from. With this new group in council it would be to our advantage to hear what each elected member stands for and their background when it comes to experience, political leanings, inclination to follow the herd, election issues they now must follow through on, or even shortcomings like no real position on protecting public space or a taste for extreemly overrefined outdoor activities like golf or (if you can believe it) the car you drive, as an outdoor activity. Its a little hard to know the influence a conservative white bread group like the CoC may have on the issues to come over the next 1461 days untill the next election. Any help in trying to understand motives, strengths, and weaknes's would most welcome information. It would also help someone to see through what is sure to be a sneaky set of disinformed council meetings.

    1. The only thing to do is hold the new council's collective feet to the fire. They have made the usual campaign promises and they have also assured the electorate that the divisiveness will end. That is a given, I believe, because they are all on the same page, except Don Lubberts. Redekop will only vote in a tie and he will remain as a person who understands rules of order. He will not allow the shenanigans that Martin allowed. The peanut gallery will not be welcomed at council any more.

      It will be interesting to see how they tackle the business of representing the town. From what I know about the victors, they would fall apart if they had to endure what The Four have gone through.

  2. This is a book waiting to be written. Once the research is done and the book is published, we'll let you know.

  3. Chamber maids seems like a very good title, I was raised in Great Britain during and after the second world war, at some of the best hotels that did not have lots of plumbing ,one would find chamber pots, that a person could pee in, and the maids usually 15 or 16 year olds would take the pots and dump them into a loo, or water closet, the title seems very fitting. we have a working title to give the Barbie twins.this sums up just about what they do in the scheme of things in our town.

  4. If Wayne didnt run it sprt of looks like Mr. Piss would have got in (although its hard to be sure) but it is telling that the runnerup is someone with very little experience and seemingly ready to be shaped and influenced by the Chamber of Comments. Were there so many people ready to put the future of this area in the hands of someone so inept with what education, we might wonder?? Thats spooky even if it is Halloweenie week. Two females on the council lineup. Has this happened before?? What a tragic distraction that ill concieved concrete monolith has been on the public land along the lakefront. Still wondering what might have been overlooked by the citizens while that fight went on. Lets hope no one learns from that lesson what can be done with projects few people want, all the time pushing through an agenda that doesent get proper scrutiny. What a waste of money too. By the way some project bean counter has provided funding to "sod" the ditches going along Pt. Abino road. Come see your tax money at work.

  5. This town has just entered a very dark period once again. With so many CofC / old boy plants in power, little will get done for the greater good other than looking out for their cronies with expensive contracts/ cushy jobs/ and your tax $$$$ "evaporating" mysteriously.

    Higher taxes coming for sure to pay for all their convenient friends.

    Fort Stupid, were people vote to increase taxes to pay for a few privileged insiders.

    Spoiler alert.......Bay Beach is done and ol Jimbo will be crowned head dirtbag with Redekop presiding over it all. Wayne is a slicker more polished version of Dirty Doug and will do nothing to stand up to the "establishment" and do the right thing.

    1. I have faith that some good will come out of this latest set-back for the people. There is but a fine line protecting those who do not have the best interests of the taxpayers in mind. I do hope that the new council will approach its duties with respect for everyone. They promised an end to divisiveness; let's see them do it. However, that does not mean that they become tyrannical and one-sided. They have a lot to prove; there are still many who are leery of a couple of them.

      Let's see too how Sandy Annunziata fares on Regional Council. All he has to do is show up and stay at council meetings and he will do better than his predecessor.

  6. Well it should be interesting to see how this new group of councillors handle the issues. For some it has been too easy to bad mouth, make untrue statements at council & assume the 4 were not doing their jobs. ell lets just see what happens in 6 months when they have to make the hard decisions & make enemies of the Ninjas. Lets just see how they handle the bad untruthful comments from the internet trolls & God Forbid they disagree with Mr Thibert. Karma.

    1. Well, Marina, and especially Kim Zanko, will not disagree with Jim Thibert. They owe their positions to him. Kim Zanko was plucked out of a customs brokerage to be the calendar girl for the Chamber of Commerce. Marina's company was given the human resources position at the Fort Erie Race Track. It is now being run by a close relative, according to sources. She may find herself in multiple conflicts when she takes office. She may have to recuse herself from voting on many issues as a result.

      She may also be liable to a separate lawsuit for her actions regarding John Hill. She can only hope that he will not stoop to the the level she reached in order to discredit him: Compliance audit; anti-Hill flyer and billboard support; financial support of conflict of interest lawsuit, etc.

      Of all the new councillors, she is the most problematic to some of us. She is not a good example of how a representative of the people should behave. She has engaged in character assassination of a good man who did the best job he could. She disagreed with him and that is certainly her right. How that disagreement manifested itself in her support of the on-going attacks on The Four is reprehensible.

  7. Set back for the people? SO, Noyes gets 16% of the vote, Collard 23%,Hill 31%, Steckley 19%, Lubberts 38%, I'd say the people won, it was only a set back for the minority..

  8. If even let's say, the press printed a fair account of Council Meetings, the general public would understand what really has happened in the last four years.
    For instance, James Culic reported on and on that Don Lubberts was asking election procedure questions so that he could get HIS scrutineer in the car with the election box. Lubberts wanted to insure that the election box got directly to the drop off point. What is the harm in that? Most of his questions were concerning procedures for taping and most importantly the boxes going from one institution to another. Ward 5 doesn't even have institutions to worry about. The other big concern was the out polls in Stevensville being properly monitored.

    I think voters were uninformed. They thought there was an unfair 4 to 3 vote for every matter. The one our mayor promoted the most was a 4 to 3 vote to pay off Heather Salter so she wouldn't sue for harassment. MAYOR MARTIN AND PESSARO made up THAT 4 to 3 vote. And martin testified that Salter didn't even have a harassment case in the first place.

    You don't think that if the vast majority of voters knew that, they would have voted differently? I do.

    The Four did not want to run a negative campaign, maybe they should have.


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