Cornwall Ontario isn’t Ready to Change It’s Culture by Jamie Gilcig – ELECTION BLOG – Oct 20, 2014

JG Election 300x250-02  TESTCFN – Cornwall isn’t ready for change.  At least not this election.   My core pillar of changing the culture of Cornwall is the most important issue facing our city as it’s how we conduct ourselves.

While there’s a surface veneer of “nice” there’s a nasty darkness that probably is left from the old Domtar and Mill days.

When I was fired, wrongfully (and documented) from my first job in the area and the bad guy (MP Guy Lauzon) was confronted it was stated that there was stealing going on at the Habit for Humanity facility that I was marketing manager.

There was.  I caught a board member.   That person is still there.

At Glen Stor Dun Lodge the person that committed the actual Elder Abuse was still there last I checked yet Diane Shay is long gone and another whistle blower also suffered.

Does that make sense?   The common theme is don’t fuss or you’ll get it.   I’ve actually watched one knuckle dragger actually attack a bullying victim for speaking up.

Now this happens everywhere to varying degrees, but generally the “Good people” take measures to remedy or neutralize such thugs.   Sadly not so much in Cornwall.

Petty monsters like Bob Kilger, Elaine MacDonald, Gilles Latour, Kevin Hargreaves, Denis Thibault, Bob Peters, Paul Fitzpatrick and yes, Ed Lumley himself, are used to Alpha Dogging it and frankly if you get in their way you get stomped.

brownell in x files posting - url is a list of all items in x files brownell posted in as of Aug 2 2014Even Jim Brownell who is getting a lot of help covering up his support of someone who defaced the poppy while posting in a now underground hate group on facebook while using as a profile pic of  himself dressed in his Honorary Lt Col of the Glens garb.

aug 16 BROWNELL poppy notification It gets that insane.  More cover ups.   Instead of being asked to to the right thing and resign the Glens and others are actually covering it up.   Does that make sense?  Our story on the poppy defacement, of which its author Mr. Brownell supported  was posted ( and was still there ) on his own face book page. Again, do the bullies get free passes, but everyone else just gets the boot?   Is it something more than fear?

This weekend someone actually confronted the ring leader of the same  face book hate group on a new online radio show,  the Jim & Ike show.  I was speaking to this burly guy after and frankly he was shaking.  He was anxious.  His blood pressure was up.  And he was worried that this freak show mob would try and go after his business.   He then removed the comments he’d posted; not because he didn’t believe them; but because he was fearful.

Notice who is standing next to Guy in the video above.   Can you imagine being threatened with the Minister of Justice of Canada over an issue that was not government related?   Is that not text book bullying and intimidation?  Notice Super Guy’s little grin at the end?

Cornwall Ontario has a history that has gone on generations of allowing bullies to stomp on others.   It has lost thousands of its best and brightest.  Ask Ryan Gosling to say something really nice about his childhood in Cornwall.  Double dare you.

So while Brock Vegas grows and Kingston grew Cornwall …..festered.

Watching this election we hear a lot of “Change”.   We hear people saying I won’t vote for any of the incumbents; but are the new candidates really that much different?  Are not Guy St. Jean, Rony Macarone, Alyssa Blais, Carilyne Hebert, Pat Clarke, and Brock Frost simply just replacement bobble heads, and mostly of the worst kind?

Has one candidate for office this term come out and spoken up on behalf of Diane Shay or Julie Johnston since the two stories went live this past week? One?  Even Leslie O’Shaughnessy who made such a fuss about apologizing to Ms Shay?

Watching the farce from the Chamber without more than 2 or 3 candidates protesting and one actually being a lawyer about the Charter statement by Chamber Prez Kevin Hargreaves who also sent out a strictly confidential internal email from director Lezlie Strasser?

Watching The Standard Freeholder, Seaway News, and Cogeco give unfair campaign advantages to Mayor Kilger over other candidates without a peep from other candidates.

They say you get the government you deserve; that your elected officials are simply a reflection of the community.

Is this what we want to reflect?    Is it not time to change our culture right now with this election?

How many more talented people will give up on Cornwall because of watching this circus?  How many will refuse to even consider moving or coming to our city when they see the attack by the city on Diane Shay’s or the treatment of this newspaper with a boycott including a contest to encourage people to write in letters about how great Cornwall is?

Two HR managers, two CAO’s this term.   Two directors of GSDL.   And the eventual settlement or court losses?

Can we afford to continue like this and hope to improve our city?  I think not.  What will you think on October 27th?


Hugo Rodrigues, the editor of the Standard Freeholder, sent me an email complaining about what I wrote above.  The issue chiefly was that ads were sold to Mayor Kilger and others instead of making a standard offer at the close of nominations thus leaving very little prime inventory to choose from.   The Freeholder also killed an interview I did at City Hall with one of their reporters including photographs that were taken of me that day.

I have offered Mr. Rodrigues that he could post a comment or statement if he or Sun Media wish to.

There was no email from Todd Lihou or his gnarly sandal wearing to council feet.

lihou sandals

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  1. Are you really surprised? This city has a history of accepting what’s shoved down its throat by its “leaders.” None of this surprises me at all. Change is needed, BUT WILL IT HAPPEN? We’ll know on October 28.

  2. Jamie, if you hate this City so much, why don’t you move? Do you really think a city hall with a new mayor and 10 new councilors would be able to run the city better than it is now? Fresh blood would be good around the table but you still need experience. Badger Bob as mayor and 4-5 new councilors will be just fine…..If Leslie O or Jamie G were mayor, I would move to the country!

  3. Author

    Yes, that was before he was pulled out of school for being bullied and before he left Cornwall. It shows the value of supporting our talented people instead of chasing them away.

    He also shot this great clip. But you don’t see any of him promoting our city much after the age of puberty, do you?

  4. This isn’t a Cornwall problem, it’s everywhere.

    With voter turn out at 43.5% in 2010, is politics really something families or people look at when deciding to move? Highly unlikely. Jobs are the driving factor, followed by quality of life. And politicians do not create jobs ( although they like to make it sound like they do.) Politician often simply get in the way of motivated entrepreneurs and thus provide the illusion that they create jobs.

    Kingston’s population has grown a little ( mostly a numbers trick with amalgamation), but it has lost many of its major employers, leaving the bulk of good paying jobs in the government sector ( Canadian Forces, Queen’s, Corrections, Kingston Hospital, and City of Kingston….). The rest is a mix of service and retail jobs which pay very little in comparison to the cost of living.

    Cornwall’s job market is pretty gloomy too, with major employment again found in government sector. However, the warehouse industry ( although not the best) does provide an average income ( let’s be honest… two people still need to work to make what one person should be making) when you compare it against the cost of living.

    I do feel however, that Cornwall is selling itself short. Development fees should be issued. The land is of value and should not be sold like a bargain bin discount out of desperation. Also, I feel that the land used for warehousing could be better used for higher value employment. Warehouses take a lot of room, and we only have so much land.

    We have to understand that the glory days of high paying manufacturing or big companies settling into a city are long gone. Even though manufacturing jobs are coming back to North America ( Apple recently opened its Sapphire glass plant in Arizona), they are being set up with more robotics and less actual people, so the number of jobs aren’t close to as much as they were previously in manufacturing.

    So what’s the future? Here’s how I see things.

    1. Government Needs to Focus on The Basics ( infrastructure, water, sewer, roads…ect) and learn to do that well and efficiently.
    2. Reduce red tap and streamline processes for entrepreneurs
    3. Allow entrepreneurs to do what they do best ……create jobs!
    4. Align higher education schools in the area with the industries that the city is developing ( for example… if we were to have a green industry …. something like Smart Greens for an example…. we could offer courses and programs at the college or through private colleges that would fit that niche).
    5. When jobs or industries begin to grab hold and Cornwall is seen as a go to place for x-industry or y-industry, it will begin to attract the talent it needs, the talent will create more value for the city…the industries will grow, the tax base will increase, and quality of life begins to be better.

    It is all about becoming a better city first…. not looking outside our city for the magic pill of industry to save us or create a gazillion jobs. We must create the right environment to allow industries to grow… and everything else will fall into place.

  5. ADMIN the only change we will get if the same group of dysfunctional (deaf, dumb and blind to reality) self serving, egomaniacs get reelected is four quarters for a loonie. As for people that refuse to vote they are more a part of the problem than the current slate of fools. By not voting as Garden Girl pointed out the same people will vote to put the same people back to sit around the horseshoe for another four years.

    Put down your beer, push yourself away from the fridge, computer, t.v. reality show and get real. Get out and vote. Think about it 40 minutes in exchange for a better four years is a deal !

  6. I agree with everything Jason said. It is NOT a Cornwall problem; it’s everywhere. Every city, no matter its size, has its problems. Each city has its unique problems. The thing is to pick a place you want to live and accept the city’s problems and help solve said problems.

    I also agree with David Oldham. Part of the problem is people don’t want to be involved and refuse to vote. This gets the same slate of clowns re-elected, so we’re no further ahead.

  7. Bullies are everywhere and I experienced it in Cornwall as a child, my kids experienced it here in Ottawa as well as in Cornwall. The problem stems from the home how children are raised. Many parents who can afford it place their kids in private schools and others in home schooling. There is a great deal wrong with society today which is a great deal worse than when I grew up. My children who are adults now have said that as society goes ahead things do get worse and how true that is and I see it all the time. Voting alone is part of the solution to get rid of the bad ones and you always have to keep an eye on them at all times. Good people do go bad and that happens to a lot of good people when they get into government in Ottawa and elsewhere where they think that they are too high up and untouchable. You never trust anybody at all and always keep in touch with your local council and make sure that they speak up for you. Hold them accountable for everything.

  8. As an outside observer, it seems to me that there is high tolerance for bullying in Cornwall, whether it’s committed by politicians or religious “leaders”.

  9. Furtz you sure are right about what you said. There are a great deal more priests who did sexual abuse to minors that were not named by Ron Leroux and others and so many that it would fill a great deal of the paper. Things went on in past years that would make people’s hair stand up and I remember so much that happened since my childhood of alter boys being abused by the priests at the church that I went to. I remember those first Friday of the month where we all had to walk to church after school in rows and what the boys went through of not wanting to go in and a girl in my class who was sexually abused by her father. I know even the names of those victims and the perpetrator. Cornwall has a mighty blackened reputation and the majority of the perpetrators were those who held high positions of trust. If you cannot trust those people then who else can you trust. When Jamie posted about Cornwall not ready for change I have to agree to quite a point because in order for change to happen people have to heal and you can’t heal in a place where everything bad happened to you. For me it is like watching a movie over and over again in my head of the hell that those young people went through back in my day. A lot of the past perpetrators are dead now but the memories are never erased.

  10. Back during the early/mid 1950’s, Cornwall’s boundaries were Ninth Street, Cumberland Avenue, Marlborough Avenue and the river. Back during those days, French people in Cornwall and in Quebec were treated as 2nd class citizens . . . gangs of English speaking youths would not hesitate to rough up small numbers of French speaking people. The English-owned smoke stack industries of that period brought over managerial personnel from England . . . an equally well qualified French person had little chance.

    The closure of the English-owned smoke-stack industries across Quebec (and in Cornwall) and their replacement by newer generation industries, opened new employment opportunities for people who were formerly discriminated against. English old-boy network connections meant little in the new industries.

    Its was change in the economy that precipitated a change in attitude toward people who were once targets of discrimination.

    Back during the days of slavery, it was innovation that made slaves redundant in many segments of the 19th century economy. During the early days of wind-powered sailing ships, slaves worked with needle and thread to repair ship sails . . . then along came the foot-treadle powered Singer sewing machine that allowed a single slave to sew as much sail within a work day, as 100-slaves working with needle and thread. Eli Whitney’s hand-cranked cotton gin allowed 2-slaves to do the work of 50-slaves removing clumps of cotton from the plants.

    At one time in Cornwall, the old-boys’ network had power and control inside the smoke stack industries . . . but no more. Today, their locus of power and control is within public sector services and publicly funded entities. In other words, the old-boys’ network is heavily dependant on federal and provincial governments providing funding to these services and entities. Without that funding, their power collapses.

    At one time, all it took was for a member of the old-boys network to call a business owner to get somebody laid off . . . . or fired from their job if they made political waves in the town. If you were unprepared to dance to their tune, a few of them could boldly declare that you did not have a hope and a prayer in ever being hired in Cornwall.

    Today, many people live in Cornwall and commute to work in larger centres such as Ottawa or Montreal, or telecommute to work from home offices to head offices located elsewhere in the world. For the latter group, toadies connected to the old boys may actually have done them a big favour by telling them that they could make sure that they’d never get hired in Cornwall. Except they don’t have that kind of power today . . . . back in the old days, you got hired in private smoke stack industries because of your connections . . . today, you get hired in public sector and publicly funded entities courtesy of old-boy political connections.

    While some of the old boys may dislike outsiders identifying future economic possibilities for this region, you can have new private sector economic development inside Cornwall or it can go outside of Cornwall. What do the old boys choose?

  11. In regard to raising children I find they are being raised very different than my generation. If I disobeyed my parents there were consequences and usually painful ones. If a kid disobeys his parents now they might get a time-out. Give me a freakin’ break.

    In regard to the high tolerance and acceptance of bullying in Cornwall….yes it happens. But this has to change and soon!!

    The old boys clubs MUST be stopped if Cornwall is to move forward.

  12. Hi Hugger1

    Federal and provincial political parties absolutely want old boys clubs in smaller towns and especially so at election times when the old boys clubs can work toward getting preferred candidates elected to federal or provincial office. Between elections, federal and provincial government departments will funnel money to various old boys clubs, to literally look after them by sponsoring various projects until the next election . . . . . and that funding is what sustains the culture in Cornwall. When the elected member gives grant money to various industries, there is the news media photo-op . . . and the amount of money that is given is usually a tiny percentage of the annual industrial tax bill.

  13. Hi Harry Valentine

    Do you ever miss hitting the nail on the head?

  14. Hey Harry were you referring to the original slaves of the British, the Irish, or the Negro slaves who were worth more, treated much better and were used later?

  15. Harry Valentine and David Oldham: just because the old boys clubs exist and are encouraged by other levels of government does NOT make it right.

  16. At least some of the population has figured that out Hugger1. Unfortunately just not enough to make a difference to the voting outcome sometimes.

  17. Hi David Oldham,

    The point I was making is that entrepreneurs drive change in the economy . . . and that changes in the economy can give rise to social change and even political change. During the 19-th century, the invention of new tools greatly increased the productive output of Negro slaves employed in certain categories of work, greatly reducing the need for large numbers of slaves in certain industries. Redundant slaves were given their freedom and had to look after themselves . . . saving their former owners money.

    Prior to slaves becoming redundant, the profession, earnings and status of certain old boys of that era, depended heavily on certain industries needing to employ large numbers of slaves. Economic change broke the power base of some old boys networks of that period.

    During the mid-20-th century, smoke stack industries provided a power base for the old boys of Montreal and even in Cornwall. Entrepreneurial ingenuity changed industry and resulted in the closure of traditional smoke stack industries that employed large numbers of workers who engaged in manual labour, supervised by an elite who were connected to old boys networks. When new technologies and ideas took hold in the economy, the supervisory positions in the smoke stack industries disappeared . . . and eroded much of the power base of traditional old boys clubs that earned much of their income in the traditional private sector.

    The political culture that exists in Cornwall today is a direct result of how the provincial government exerts influence inside municipalities across Ontario. In certain American jurisdictions, the local chamber of commerce oversees economic development and municipalities can offer tax breaks to new industries . . .. but NOT in Ontario. The Ontario government requires each municipality to own a nursing home. In 1967, Cornwall’s population stood at 44,000-people . . . today we have about 47,000 . . . . and almost 3-times the number of municipal employees, the direct result of requirements that the provincial government imposes on municipalities.

    If Cornwall had fewer municipal employees and did not own a nursing home, there may have been fewer problems involving municipal senior management and their relationship with the elected council.

  18. Hi Harry Valentine

    My query was simply an aside.

    We are quite in agreement in that entrepreneurs drive both the economy and resultant social change as we evolve as a people both financially and technologically. Many individuals would look to the government for job creation when if fact the government can only create programs designed to stimulate the private sector to create opportunities. The government of course is a consumer of money and not a vehicle of wealth creation. Any jobs directly accredited to the government are funded by the one and only taxpayer who also of course funds corporate taxes through consumerism. This general lack of understanding has always been a source of amusement when certain political bodies rant for higher corporate taxes. As if magically this extra taxation doesn’t ultimately merely lift additional coins from the pockets of the one and only taxpayer, you and I. Where we might disagree Harry relates to your concept that fewer problems might exist in any capacity under any change in circumstance where the current elected council is involved. While I agree in part with your premise we are diametrically opposed when factoring in the existing members of council. I have yet to see any evidence that their collective cognitive powers would have had the result that you are suggesting. Therein lies as I have stated before the underlining dilemma that is Cornwall’s cross to bear. The same old and same old produces predictable results. That is my opinion on the matter. I appreciate the discourse, cheers.

  19. So, Harry Valentine, is the solution to privatize all city services?

    Most cities own at least one long-term care facility. In fact Ottawa owns four. These are not exactly large money makers as the corporations that own them are usually non-profit or owned in tandem with a retirement residence.

  20. Lately Hugger said to me about why I blame immigrants for the gangs and bullies in school well Hugger go and read on what is happening here in the schools in Ontario and all over Canada with the Syrian and other students from the war torn countries. When you read and know how these people think and react then come back and tell me what you think.

  21. As a Canadian born and raised woman 65 years old I have experienced bullying in school. I am 1/2 English and 1/2 French and the French never accepted me and I had to fight my way through to survive. The problem is on both sides and Harry described Cornhole well from what it was like in past years.

  22. The problem is bullying. And anyone who actually thinks this problem will go away I say give you head a good shake. It will never go away. The problem is partially refugee related. But it’s more of a discipline thing. The kids nowadays are undisciplined by their parents, not like we were. There is no discipline from parents to kids nowadays. There lays the problem.

  23. Author

    Hugger in my opinion the problem isn’t as much bullying so much as how those around them deal with bullying. A million years ago, when I was young, we were taught to stand up to bullies and we were taught to stand up for those being bullied.

    Nowadays it seems that the bullies get supported no matter what.

  24. Admin..I agree. I know in grade five I stood up to a bully at school and we became friends because of that. Nowadays if someone did that they would be charged with assault. As I said the bullying problem will never go away. It just seems to change direction every few years.

  25. My husband also said that he was bullied in school as well as a child and he was in a private school along with his siblings. My father in law had a great business in olive oil and soap, etc. and were very prosperous. All schools have their bullies no matter where. Hugger kids today are not disciplined the way we were and so true. Parents are not parents anymore.

  26. Cornhole’s mentality will not change at all. This mentality has been inbred from one generation after another. There were small towns before that grew more than Cornhole and I was in shock to see the differences in population. People changed in those towns but Cornhole remained behind.

  27. Jean Vidchier this is mighty strange. You and others attacking Jamie saying that he hates Cornhole. Jamie comes out with the truth and is not hiding anything like your corporate toilet papers of record and that is not hate but telling it like it is. I can’t stand Cornhole and I am from there unfortunately.

  28. People in Cornhole can’t take the truth and that is why you all remained in a dump. It has always been known that anybody who comes from another city is not welcome. Oh you bring the jobs but you get the hell out and that is your attitude in Cornhole. There was so much laughter here in Ottawa about Cornhole when I worked in the government.

  29. Jamie is the best thing that hit Cornhole ever but one thing is that I will never understand why he decided to stay in that hole. Jamie’s ex wanted Brockville and she is a smart cookie and I too would have preferred Brockville with an educated population and one that is civilized. Jamie, Jamie, Jamie what did you do my friend?

  30. Author

    Jules I have always said that if I ever left Cornwall it wouldn’t be because of the clique or the bad guys and girls, but because the good ones just didn’t are enough about our community.

  31. The song remain the same. PLEASE turn the page.

  32. Jamie you are a very good man and that is the truth. The good people are so afraid of their own shadow that they don’t stand up for their rights. My husband said over and over again that the people of Cornhole don’t know their rights and that is so true.

  33. If you folks are afraid of the clique then the clique won. It is like if you are afraid of the government then you have tyranny. If the government is afraid of you then you have freedom and the same thing goes with the clique.

  34. Jamie I stand up proud of you but be mighty careful. The clique has destroyed a good cop Perry Dunlop and they are “mafia”. You cannot get me back to live in Cornhole at all and I would go elsewhere but not Cornhole.

  35. My husband told me that there were gun shots on St. Laurent Blvd and I will look that up soon. The gangs are out of control. The cops cannot fight them and no longer the same Ottawa that we once knew. The Bible is playing out my friend and that is the truth. Society is finished.

  36. Change doesn’t start at the top but starts at the bottom (municipal) and if the municipal is corrupt the provincial and federal will be even more corrupt. You judge a tree by its fruits and when a tree fails to produce good fruits then you cut it down and the same with political leaders – change them for the good and be strong and change for the good.

  37. Easier said than done. If people refuse to help enable change it’ll never happen. It happens all the time in politics, whether it be municipal, provincial or federal. Voting is one way to do this. Voter apathy does not help

  38. Author

    Yet Hugger, for all the complaining that some do about our community, in the last election, the people of Cornwall decided to turf Kilger and 5 of his oldest and worst councilors.

    That’s hope. Now next election will be about the clear message about wanting a brighter change and future for everyone in Cornwall and not just the clique.

  39. I totally agree Admin. 2014 was a start. Yet one of the five turfed, Denis Carr, managed to squeak back in thanks to Brock Frost resigning.

  40. Author

    Better than Guy St. Jean Hugger. He was totally putrid politically with very little back bone and personal integrity.

  41. We met a nice senior couple like ourselves this morning from Kitchener/Waterloo and they wanted ot see Hogg’s Back Falls which we showed them and they spoke about the crime here in Ottawa and one of their family members is a cop here in Ottawa. Really nice people to meet.

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