Let Councillor Phinney do his job. Do not silence him!

Councillor Bruce Phinney, one of the most decent Canadian/NB politicians

Many thanks to the New Wark Times for this shocking, yet not surprising, article:

Bambi knows VERY well two facts in our town:

First, the shenanigans of our town’s council are legendary. They sadly know no shame and no limits. Today, we have another evidence of this reality. Regardless of the different format of meetings, physical or virtual, some things just remain unchanged.

Second, Councillor Bruce Phinney is one of the VERY rare PRINCIPLED politicians. With all due respect to Sackville’s public servants, he is perhaps our best town councillor. Make no mistake, Bambi is not saying this because he cannot be wrong. Of course, he can at times, like all of us. Bambi is stating this simply because Councillor Phinney is always true to both his principles AND his constituents.

Bearing this in mind, we all know what it means to accuse him of violating a so-called (new) code of conduct.

Actually, such accusation is like a double-edged sword. One one hand, it serves to corner and silence him. On the other hand, it is an honour for him, morally speaking. Here is why: Councillor Phinney speaks his mind. His opinions are not for sale. He looks at the evidence, with an attention to details. He also sees the bigger picture very lucidly. He has a continuity in his thoughts. Most importantly, he is not afraid of saying the truth as it is. He stands up for his values, for the citizens he represents, and for justice for the sake of justice. He does neither virtue signal nor gain anything in return of his opinions.

Thank you Councillor Phinney for whom you are.Today, it is our turn to stand up for you. Through you, we stand up for both common sense and justice in our town. Enough of control to hide we do not know what. Enough of control to hide behind we do not care what. Today, it is a code of conduct. Tomorrow, it will be another invention. Enough childlessness. Sackvillians deserve a better practice of politics.

Thus, using the platform of her personal blog, as a citizen of Sackville, Bambi VERY strongly condemns these accusations, altogether. She also FULLY supports Councillor Bruce Phinney. We need MORE of him… We need MORE politicians like him, not just in Sackville but also in Fredericton, Ottawa, Beirut, the rest of the world… !

To conclude this post, there are no words more powerful than those of Ms. Sharon’s Hicks (comments already published on the New Wark Times). Bambi will allow herself to highlight them again below. Thank you Ms. Hicks for being simply SO RIGHT. Please read her comment until the end, without missing her clever bolded question!

SHARON HICKS (taken from the New Wark Times, please see the link above):

This latest updated version of the Code of Conduct for Councilors was passed in March of this year, which added even more ‘control features’ to the previous version from 2017. Here is the link to the document, located on the Town website – https://sackville.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/271-Code-of-Conduct-By-Law.pdf

When you read through the entire by-law, as I have done several times, and consider the potential ramifications of each individual section, it presents as a document seemingly designed to control [Councilors] to the highest degree possible, as [Councilor] Phinney has pointed out.

While it is indeed essential for all elected officials to present themselves with a high degree of professionalism and courtesy, and to represent the best interests of the citizens who elect them, one could ask why this ‘extreme’ level of control is deemed to be necessary, and by whom.

If I were considering running for Sackville Town Council, after reading this document I would definitely have reservations about putting myself in that position where I would basically be ‘muzzled’, unable to speak up to represent the best interests of our citizens without threat of personal reprimand.

Who is Council elected to represent – the citizens or the bureaucracy?”

One thought on “Let Councillor Phinney do his job. Do not silence him!”

  1. It’s good that Wark is reporting on this issue.

    The fascist, controlling, authoritarian impulse runs deep at Town Hall. That, and the impulse of secrecy. A good motto for Sackville would be “Injustice in Secret.” Maybe it would look quaint if we translated it to Latin. “In arcanum iniustitiam”, or some such.

    Hicks says it right: “Who is Council elected to represent – the citizens or the bureaucracy?” Of course, we know that the truth is that the authoritarians on Council control and empower the bureaucracy to do their bidding, and then act as if Council isn’t to get involved. So convenient… so Sackville.

    What I’d like to know is, what is this really about? In a real democracy, we, the voters, would know. But here, we’re left to guess: Phinney presumably objected (in my opinion correctly) to the elevation of Jamie Burke to CAO. Presumably, this whole process is revenge upon him for daring to have an opinion (one which I agree with, incidentally, but my reaction would be no different otherwise).

    I’d like to know, what exactly do they think that they can do to Councillor Phinney? In this province where the written law is but a mere suggestion to the powerful and connected and the real decisions are made by the unelected and appointed, what will they try to subvert the will of the voters who elect him?

    Where are our big mouth “activists” in Town on this one? Strangely silent. Because they’re a part of the new autocracy that rules over us, and we all know it. For all the bleating that they do about “colonialism”, they’re strangely silent when it happens in their own front yard.

    At the very least, this should be a reminder that we should all vote for Phinney at the upcoming election, if the minions allow us to. He’s the only player in there we can all be sure isn’t in on any of the games.

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