My first taste of political awareness would be under the tutorship of Russell Simmons of Def Jam recordings when I worked/lived Chung King. He had a vision and talked about it incessantly. I listened. Though Chung King Studios was a recording studio that serviced his Record Company it still became an avenue to understand the complexities between the relationship between business and politics. Mr.. Simmons believed that seemingly disparate groups could unite if they had common cultural attributes. He worked tirelessly to bring hip hop into the mainstream to reach this goal. His thought was that if inner city black and white youth could walk down the street and realize they were listening to the same music then that was an opportunity to make connections. Create common cultural denominators. He also taught me that in order to continue to work towards his objective that it had to be profitable and sustainable. It was, he shaped the music we listen to today. He picked the right people to achieve that goal, Chung King under the ownership of John King and the recording talents of Steve Ett. I will whine about previous business percentages later or monies paid back to Ian Etches. He did get his money back and was the most significant expenditure he has ever made if he realizes it or not. Direct Access Democracy 2000 - 2006 After the successful acquisition of my project Alarmcam.com by US Oil and Gas I considered the future of democracy in the age of the information. With the goal to strengthen the relationships between the political consumer and their elected officials, I started DirectAccessDemocracy.net. I thought that there was no reason for the constituent to be involved in the political decision making process if they so chose to do so and could even profile what areas of political concern that was most important for alert. The idea was that when a bill or vote came before an elected assembly that the constituent could be notified of such considerations and participate in the debate via the web. There could be dedicated forums on the issue and online polling of registered voters to cast a ballot as they saw fit. This information could be available to the elected official who could use it as a guide in the decision making process. I was naive as to the level of participation possible for the constituent as they had their lives to run and not the government. We elect officials to do due diligence and consider the compromises necessary to achieve a balanced legislation that is practical. In other words there was only one person who used it to continue to express his outlandish opinions while I was an elected official
I was traumatized by September 11th, 2001. I had lived in NYC for well over 10 years and knew friends and family who worked at ground zero. Horrified as I was, I was completely distraught over the willingness for revenge that would bring such horror to other innocent people as we reacted with swift "justice" with activities like cluster bombing Kabul. I doubt we hit any of the terrorists there but surely did damage to families already torn apart by previous Russian occupation. I have no interest in bringing my pain to others for temporary emotional satisfaction and watched as the basic fabric of American values were eroded away as we conceded to the objectives of our enemies. They wanted to disrupt the values we held dear, they did. We surrendered those values to our hate and rather than using the Constitution to address rightful justice we forgo its guiding hand and initialed the Patriot Act. Only one politician stood by the Constitution and called for surgical Marques of Reprisal to get the "evil doers", Ron Paul. He argued that the United States should not get into protracted wars and that the Constitution was good enough to deal with any threat to America. He was right. Instead we have a never ending war that is only growing.
It became corporately unproductive for organizations to allow the free political discourse that is central to democracy. Throughout North America online forums for such discussion were closed down. Without Free Speech and an avenue for the citizenry to express themselves I realized that democracy itself was being blinded with fear. To that I opened Talkon.ca to keep the political conversation open. It became one of Canada's leading political forums and as such became a target of scrutiny by other interested media organizations who wanted me to squash some of the outrageous comments some individuals made. Charges were filed under the hate crimes laws of Canada by a leading corporate media interest which were dismissed by the RCMP after investigation. The policy of Talkon.ca was, no editing, your words can bury yourself.
One of the important lessons for me was learned at my time I spent at Chung King but reinforced at Talkon.ca with clarity. Many media organizations are owned by "people". People have political agendas and will use their companies to get their message out while marginalizing opposing points of view. Who owns the media owns the message. Even I used the medium of Talkon.ca to allow people the right to have their say, unedited.
This was my first incursion into Federal politics in Canada. I ran as an independent who by no way was independent of the community, interdependent. My first task was to gauge community need. I knew I wasn't going to win but wanted to bring up in public debate issues that did not fit into the party brochures. I had come to realize that party politicians represent their party to the people and not the people to the elected assembly. One main issue had come to prominence while having discussions with the Mayors of Mission and Maple Ridge. Municipalities have no power in the Canadian Constitution. They are secondary citizens to the Provincial Governments. The Union of Canadian Municipalities had been advocating the Federal Government to open up Constitutional talks to address this issue. I contacted all the independent candidates across Canada and urged them to make this a talking point of their campaigns. Prime Minister Martin did cave but I suspect it was mainly due to the pressure the Union had been putting on him. Rather than agreeing to open up talks on the Constitution he instead agreed to allocate the GST gas tax for infrastructure being directly paid to the Municipalities.
Conveniently at this time articles started appearing in the Abbotsford News about the Talkon.ca forum which appeared to try to lead people to believe that I was by allowing hate speech that I was promoting it. It back fired and it turns out that many other people also believed it necessary in Democracy to give an unfiltered forum to the voice of the people. The vote count was in and I had the opportunity to demonstrate one of the top ten percentages for an independent in Canada that election. I also appeared on a CBC radio program which explored the roles of independents in an election. Besides being able to bring up important non-party platform issues I also noted at that time the possibility of holding a swing vote to Parliament if it was a tight race. It was a tight race and the other independent on the show, Chuck Cadman whodisagreed with me on this point as being improbable, did go on to being that swing vote as an independent. Score one for independents being able to serve their communities without being tied down by a party leash.
The Provincial government wanted to put the idea of Electoral reform to the People in the form of referendum. They had convened a task force comprised of randomly picked citizens to review the intricacies of election processes and decide on the best one. After months of education and debate the task force came to a conclusion on what was best for BC. The government then wanted to put that informed decision to the citizens who were not educated on the matter. I started a campaign to educate the population on election reform. I was allowed in the Provincial debates to have a time frame dedicated to electoral reform debate. I was willing to pick either side but more often than not I was left to argue with myself onstage as no one seemed to know nothing about it. While debating myself would point my finger at me and exclaim: "You sir are a cad and a fool". It was still difficult to grasp even with humor thrown in. I finally found what works. To have people vote using the two systems while entering the debate and annoucing the results of eachat the end of the debated. Results they understand. Ifthe Canadian Government wants to hold a referendum on electoral reform they should first have the reformed system be done alongside the regular election process as a demonstration so people can see the conclusions and have a referendum on it the next general election.
After my participation in the 2002 civic elections for the Municipality of Mission I was recruited to serve on the board of the Mission & District Senior Citizens Housing Association(Welton Towers). I was promptly elected as the Finance Chair. Listening to other board members I was urged to do something about the crippling interest charges levied by CMHC. Having been negotiated in the early eighties the association was paying 12% on the mortgage financing. After a hard fought battle we convinced CMHC to let us renegotiate with a private lender at 4.25%. They also forgave loans on repairs to the building and in total we saved the association almost a million dollars. This allowed the Association to also break with the political mandates of the Federal Government. There is an important note here that as a community association without being trapped by the letter of the law the association beamemuchmore adaptive to meeting the needs of the community. Rather than just eingfor seniors the community recognized the need to provide affordable housing options to victims of domestic violence, the disabled and other hardship cases. Our new found financial stability was leveraged to become a partner in the Mission Association of Senior Housing which built the Cedars project. Judith Ray, the nurse of Terry Fox, was the main driver for this project and working with her inspired me to undertake the development of The Senior CItizens Barter Bank in which seniors could barter services instead of cash (which they did not have) to improve the quality of their lives. The lesson of that project is that people need to be needed. In Canada we far too often see people only as recipient of services rather than active participants in the service delivery. If an elder wakes up knowing they are needed by others then they have a reason to remain active and healthy.
I accidental got elected. I think I annoyed people to much on what we needed to do so they elected me just to get me off their back about it. I did though work at forming City Council even before the election was fully underway. One of main problems with people running for office is that they will say anything to get elected. They promise this, they promise that. Election time is one of the few times that people actually pay attention to politics and I wanted an informed slate of candidates for them to choose from. As soon as the election was called, I called up all the candidates running and asked them to come to a Public Information meeting. At the meeting were representatives from all the various community groups and associations that wanted to participate. They were each given time to explain to the would be politicians what their organizational needs were. It was great to see in action. Instead of gunslinging politicians promising to sweep the streets clean if elected, we had a group of informed advocates of what could realistically be done to better our community. One main point stressed by the RCMP is that we needed social development to reduce crime. I think they tire of being babysitters for poor parenting. Initiatives undertaken by the Council of the day.
Social Development Department This was a jewel in the crown of all the people in ission who cme together and had a format to put their ideas from print to action. The cadidates elected were the politicians who got the message from the community. Upon election we gathered all interested organizations , groups, associations and individuals or other together into one gymnasium and with a facilitator outlined the communities priorities. Social Justice with healing circles. This was what I believe was the best deterrent to future crime. Liz Clay was instrumental in educating me on the importance of resolving and healing internal community conflicts rather putting the "undecided" criminals into a punitive system that would turn them to the worst.
Long term financial planning Planned growth strategy with adaptation of Development Cost Charges as to not saddle current taxpayers.
Youth Engagement Something worked. Property crime in the District of Mission went down over 40% within the first two years with auto theft dropping 67%.
After a divorce I was despondent and left Mission to go as far away as I could. I went to the arctic having convinced myself I would explore the concepts of co-governance. I will not reveal too much on this now pending soon coming legal action outside the jurisdiction of Canadian courts but I have to say that I have never in my life seen such institutional corruption. No where, not even in south east Asia where they are amateurs in comparison to the institutional destruction of lives. There is no point in Canadian reconciliation while the criminal justice system has just replaced the residential school system.
Independent Candidacy: I intended to run in the Federal Election campaign of 2015 but after trying to arrange a time with the NWT returning officer for when I could submit my papers, he disappeared. When I was in the final days before submission Elections Canada kept referring me to his number which ended me back with them. I to no avail got anywhere. He did have time to take the candidacy papers of all the parties though. A new returning officer was appointed just after I was to have my papers in. Its all in black and white on the Elections Canada website for times of appointments of returning officers. Did I mention wholesale institutional corruption in the north yet? Elections Canada did not get back to me on this one. CBC Marketplace did not report or investigate my complaint. CBC would not investigate it but later called it a failed attempt at an independent run, the marginalization. See CBC News North the episode just before the election. Got to love the media. Well its just that you have to know them, the boys. I did.
Voter Engagement: Having engaged the youth in the community to work on my campaign I d id not want to let them down as they did so well getting over three hundred signatures on my nomination papers. I re-tooled it into a "get out the vote campaign". So the challenge was on how to get a traditional non-voting hunter gatherer tribe to buy into the whiteman's election process. Voter participation in the NWT went up 10% but in Inuvik it skyrocketed up by 35%. Kids just don't know the system is rigged against them and if they keep that attitude it can't be. They may be too young to vote but not too young to have an opinion on their future. The poster that got the elders to vote simply said ...... We have to teach our kids to hunt on the Changing land. There was a picture of a Mother polar bear with a baby bear. I thought it best not to use a picture of Stephen Harper and Peter Mckay as then everyone would have wanted to vote twice for the Liberals.
I'm not sure why you pay pundits so much to always be wrong. I started worrying about a Trump Presidency the moment he declared. Do they have a concept of human nature? I initially spent my time making digital Trump products. Just fun stuff on youtube about the election and his what is administration jokes would be. It's not profitable to have to re-manufacture new products and I was not producing twice. Trump was the man.
Arctic Restaurant - Campaign: It was important to involve myself in the US election when I realized that the current slate of US politicians did not have the capacity to respond to the Trump candidacy. I had faith in Trump from the beginning that he would win. He was wearing the red tie and talking like it belonged to him. The boss in the board meeting can say anything they want and get away with it, they are the boss. Use the enemies strengths to your advantage. Trump has only one asset. His name. He values that above all else. I will acquire the name and remember to I acquired the name of his Grandfather's original brothel in Whitehorse and took the lease on the original location. Publicized with cartoons to bridge the gap between his grandfather profiting off of women's bodies to our now President-elect continuing the core family business with his various beauty pageants. Also encouraged a few people in Florida to distribute my poster targeting the Hispanic community: "Don't Vote, Nobody wants to speak Spanish". The Hispanic community did come out to vote. Much like Candidate Trump's campaign it was not one built in intellectual arguments. It evoked an emotional reaction that could not be intellectualized away later. Never argue with feelings, it never works.
Arctic Restaurant - Post-election: Protect the First Amendment. I believe President-elect Trump when he says he will rip open the First Amendment because of the way he was treated by media. He's a novice politician, he'll get used to it. Though it is a threat. If we lose freedom of the press then all else is lost. Freedom of the Press is Democracy's hard line in the sand.
A to do project to convince the Federal Government to hold an election with electoral reform alongside the binding first past the post election so the constituents can tangibly see the two systems in operation with results. Let them vote once they have used the system and can judge the results.
I'll be ready to run as the first Canadian to do so, just in case Donald wants to run a third term. If he does, I'm sure the Constitution won't be in effect at that time. I realize that in order to be convincing to the American public, is to do what they love. Become a hoarder like The President-elect was. In order to do it responsibly it will be important for me if everyone profits. I've shelved a multiple of significant business plans to effectuate a significant capital if I can raise in excess of 400 dollars. I've moved to Whitehorse and assumed the role of Grandfather Trump to Donald. Donnie knows he is trying to prove his worth to outshine the man who climbed over frozen mountains with wagons of whore's horseflesh and whiskey in tow. Grandpa Trumps not only the started the family fortune but the family business plan. Girly shows, gambling and the smell of horseflesh. Well on that note I think now that we are famous by getting elected, I will use the association with the original Trump family fortune as the starting financial acquisition to launch proceeding projects. I hope now that I'm running as President that I get secret service protection.