Yesterday I was asked what the purpose of my blog posts is. Here is the text of the first comment I received.
“Question though: In one or two sentences, could you please explain here what exactly is the case you’re trying to build? Are you trying to make the current major [sic] out to be a liar for what he wrote in his guest columns? I have enjoyed reading the major’s [sic] ‘Musings’. The meaning of musings is ‘contemplations/reflections/thoughts’; not ‘hard stats and facts’.”
Fair question. I was working though so could not respond immediately. Then I read this.
“I don’t know what the intend [sic] of the blogger is. To be honest this ‘building a case’ is starting to smell like character assassination to me. As was pointed out above, the current major [sic] is a lawyer.”
The commenter has since edited the comment to remove the last sentence.
First, my purpose.
From day one, I have stated my purpose in the About page on this blog, there for all to see. I openly admit I have a concrete position, that I will present it as such, and that this does not mean it is the correct position. There is no correct position in democracy.
Why Mayor’s Musings?
The Mayor was given a platform in the newspaper to present his positions, a right he shares with me. Until now an opposing interpretation had no public venue for presentation.
That was my purpose. Balance out the discourse.
Why hone in on specific statements? Aren’t they just musings, contemplations, and thoughts?
Musings and opinions would be stating that Peace River is the most beautiful place in the world and the best place to live, an opinion I share with Mr. Mann.
A statement of presumed fact would be stating that MoneySense magazine chose Peace River as the best place to live in Canada.
The latter suggests verifiability and is thus open to scrutiny.
And why choose the issues I did? Largely because they are the issues I’m interested in. Was the chairlift purchase a wise use of town funds? Did the transfer agreement with the town benefit taxpayers? Are we capitalizing on growth in the area or leaving some on the table? Are we doing everything we can to attract business development and building projects, or are we merely riding the tide of regional patterns? Are we funding growth with revenue growth or debt?
Mr. Mann presented one position on these issues, I present an opposing one.
Politicians work for the people. And as such, they are accountable to the people. Just as much as Mayor Mann had the right to author his column, I too have the right to question it and form an opinion on it.
It is not character assassination. It is dissension.
If the Premier or Prime Minister made statements in the press and I questioned them, would it be character assassination?