It’s interesting to see what hits a button with people and what doesn’t? In this age of internet newspapers like CFN we get to see direct results by page view counts, comments, and of course Social Media chatter.
In 2015 we also live in an age of near Orwellian times. Mass media, the delivery of information and entertainment is essentially owned by large corporations which clearly have agendas in controlling the message and messenger.
They tie in to political machines frequently making and breaking elections such as this very independent outlet did in our local Cornwall election in 2014.
Essentially we’re told what should be important which many times isn’t what truly is important while hiding real issues.
Here are some of the biggest issues facing the World today. The impact of Fukushima as its nuclear charged waters edge closer to the West Coast of North America and poison ocean life en route. The real issues of climate change and what can be done rather than how to tax the end results. 18 degrees on December 24th is not the norm for Canada.
The situations in the Middle East are frankly scary. It’s Cowboy time with Mr. Putin and the West trying to see who has the biggest cod piece at the expense of millions of lives.
We live in an age it seems that clearly has lost any accountability. We essentially have an elite that scientifically knows not only how to break rules, but does so with impunity knowing that the penalties, if ever even remotely enforced will not come close to the gains from the wrong doing.
Those of us that dare defy or simply point out the truth are punished; usually to the point of being discredited and destroyed in almost every way possible. In non Western countries it usually means death, but here in Canada for example your reputation is destroyed and your finances ruined.
The scariest thing is that many people know this happens but sit in silence for fear of it being their turn next.
With oil crashing and economies in China, Russia, and the West slumping financial distress will only push people past the brink.
Healthcare is literally crumbling in front of our eyes. Clearly if you can afford care you get it, but if you can’t your life span and quality of life will be significantly less in many places.
Here in Canada many let out a sigh of relief after Stephen Harper was voted out. His near Totalitarian, angry old man, us or them rhetoric finally led to an embarrassing defeat and majority government for Justin Trudeau which was an election victory of desperation by many and not a true win for Mr. Trudeau who already has had to drop many of the Used Car sales promises that helped him to a majority.
We live in times where we have to work harder to earn less. Those stresses cause a multitude of changes in how we live and play.
Culturally we go to less events and concerts. More and more people live their lives digitally. I attended a party where people were shooting selfies and sending them to each other while standing next to each other. People are losing their ability to communicate and comprehend. If you don’t understand what’s communicated is it any wonder that so many react the way they do?
I live in a city that is a microcosm of the ills of our society. While not unique, Cornwall Ontario certainly is above the average line of the dysfunction and corruption that impacts the world around us.
Power is consolidated with those that remotely question or oppose it attacked to the point of being forced to leave the community as many have publicly stated yours truly should do.
This newspaper has barely survived a four year boycott actually led by City Hall. From its lawyers trying to slur us by calling an Online newspaper a blog to try and discredit it with advertisers, to mystical attacks from newspapers that get the most advertising from the City. It also has led to a false arrest with connections to City Hall.
Recently I filed a Conflict of Interest complaint against Mayor Leslie O’Shaughnessy and two city councilors as they sat on a steering committee of a group that came to council and asked for cash. They then participated in the meeting that the group received money. It was all on video from the city itself.
At first the Mayor fumbled, citing the need for a second legal opinion. That led the same City Lawyer that had slurred this newspaper representing them which in itself was another conflict.
After reading that writing I offered to do a push. I’d withdraw my complaint with all parties bearing cost (essentially because it was felt that it was like changing a poker game to no limit when you showed up to play with a limit), but the City lawyer refused. He then asked for a new court date because the judge sitting on the date scheduled was also on the same steering committee. A reasonable person might suggest that if there was a conflict for the judge that his clients themselves were indictable.
Instead a new judge appeared. A hearing resulted in an initial motion for dismissal of the city legal firm and lawyer being waved off and then a tirade by Judge Eric Leroy, the application dismissed, and myself slapped with a maximum amount of cost in spite of attempts for resolution prior and that I was self represented and not expected to have a grasp of the minutiae of the legal system. Essentially the Conflict of Interest was cemented over.
However Judge Leroy failed to state that he was a partner with the law firm that I had outstanding current litigation against sitting councilor Brock Frost, and several other cases defended by same firm. The cryptics of the legal system, especially if you don’t have funding, or have a lawyer, can be daunting.
And even writing about this could prejudice other judges against yours truly. In fact some have asked if I could get a fair trial locally? We already know that area police refuse to charge those that break the law against yours truly.
I recently had to scrape up $4, 500 security for cost for the lawsuit against Councilor Brock Frost which was awarded based on what happened in the award by Judge Leroy. While a complaint is to be filed against the judge, justice will most likely not be served on any of this process.
Freeholder editor Hugo Rodrigues, former President of the Canadian Associations of Journalists, sat in the audience as Judge Leroy performed. Nary a word pointing out the clear facts. Hugo serves his masters quite well.
Of course the bad guys would offer their own versions and explanations, but the facts are low hanging fruit. You don’t need Freedom of Information requests to clearly see what happened or report on it.
And this culture extends. Since I have been on the board of our local 35 year old public art gallery and charity the City of Cornwall has not only cut off funding, but even refused to post events to its Facebook pages. I kid you not.
The issue is not that the bad guys behave this way; but that the good guys stay silent on their hands.
And the biggest issue facing our City is our toxic mound known as Big Ben. A ski hill in the centre of the city that this same culture allowed to be constructed without a membrane and that allegations of illegal dumping have occurred over the years.
So what is the future for our community?
I’m not sure I’ll be a part of it. The ills that face Cornwall and the area were here long before I arrived in 2004, and sadly will probably be here long after I’m gone.
CFN has been the Canary in the Coal mine for this area. We’ve shown some of the ills facing our community and even fixed the issues we could. We’ve surprised a lot of people including yours truly many times.
However time is a funny thing. As my late dear friend Howard Perry once said, well he said it many times actually,
In 100 years none of this will really matter.
What do you think dear CFN viewers? Do any issues really matter to you and what do you do to make change happen?
You can post your comments below.