The Vancouver Scrum

On the move!

Agh! You’re still here? My new site and weblog, is now up and running; new posts are building up over there, never to be mirrored here. Go! What are you waiting for? All the stuff worth keeping has been migrated over to the new server, and I don’t anticipate making any more posts here.

Bloggers and webmasters: Update your links! Simply replace with in your blogrolls or bookmarks to point to the new site. Old posts will remain on this server for as long as the people at Blogger/Google allow them to remain; unfortunately, I’m not going to bother to come up with any way of converting permalinks on this blog to their corresponding posts on the new site. Yes, I plead laziness. I also realize the irony of switching away from Blogger just it starts to add features that the demanding blog nerds insist upon.

Thanks for reading and linking, and see you over at!

—Ian King, December 13, 2004

Monday, March 31, 2003

Vancouver Sun city columnist Pete McMartin is a duplicitous twit. Those of you who read this thing regularly know my opinion of the man's writings, but it just feels so good to say it. Since last fall's civic elections, he's taken it upon himself to be Vancouver city council's antagonist, using his space to slag a council for which he never had any use in the first place. McMartin, I should note, does not actually live in Vancouver but in the distant suburb of Tsawwassen, renowned for its isolationist mentality. His latest "outrage"? The city's struggle with allowing slot machines into the city. McMartin rails about how the city has trouble 'enabling' gamblers by possibly sticking with a long-standing ban on slots, while pressing forward with safe-injection sites. Something about his moralizing's got his dander up. My advice: if you want morality, go to church, buddy. Governing the city's no place for moral purity; I'll take a pragmatic government that isn't philosophically coherent, thanks. Unlike McMartin, who can go off to his sterile suburban fortress at the end of the day, I have to live with the city government's decisions, so for me, the city's decisions are something more than a philosophical treatise or some thought experiment.

Earth to McMartin: Vancouver voters decided -- no thanks to your ivory-tower advice -- in favour of safe-injection sites in the 2002 election. Larry Campbell, who promised to bring them in as soon as possible, got twice as many votes as Jennifer Clarke, whose position on the subject changed from day to day. Voters also made sure that every single one of the city council members were solidly in favour of safe injection sites. That's democracy in action. End of story, but you know how we Vancouverites need to have self-important gits from the suburbs constantly lecturing us silly little city children.

Second: The ban on slot machines in the City of Vancouver was approved in 1997 by a council that had not one member from the now-in-charge COPE party. McMartin acknowledges this, but still uses the policy to berate a council that not only had no part in drafting the policy, but that generally campaigned on taking a cautious apprach to gaming expansion -- as did their principal rivals in the conservative Non-Partisan Association. However, I'm confident that if the new council decides to allow slots as he suggests they should, he'll find some reason to criticize them over that -- probably for flip-flopping. And for some reason, the Sun will continue to sacrifice trees for his drivel...
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