Chronicling community action, revolutionary and revealing thought

Monday, September 18, 2006

Municipal election mayhem for NDP in Parkdale

This City Hall election looks like trouble for NDP candidates in Parkdale.

Gord Perks and Mayor David Miller have both decided that it would be best if Perks represents Parkdale at City Hall. And here I thought the Liberals had the monopoly on arrogance.

Does Gord Perks even live or work in Parkdale? There are already at least 3 good NDP candidates running for City Hall that have lived in the area for a long time.

As much as I admire journalists, I wouldn't vote for one that doesn't live in my neighbourhood to make decisions for me.

But Miller truly surprises me. Why would he endorse a candidate that doesn't live in the neighbourhood? Times have changed in Parkdale and parachuters are no longer accepted. Hasn't he seen what happened to Sarmite Bulte (Forest Hill), and Sylvia Watson (Rosedale)?-She moved into Parkdale only after she was elected.

Sure Perks probably lives somewhere in the west end to his credit, but does he know our neighbourhood as well as Walt Jarsky, Rowena Santos or David White?

All three progressive Parkdale residents are running for councillor. They have been active in the neighbourhood and they know about our issues because they live here.

While I think it would have been better that these candidates get together and support one to go to City Hall, I think the real man out is Gord Perks. And unfortunately for the Mayor, he picked the wrong candidate and put himself out as well.

Walt Jarsky's lived here for twenty years in a big old rambling house with a large metal globe on his front yard.

The guy's lived here a long time and by now knows a lot about the neighbourhood.

Rowena Santos is a bright, young resident of the area who wants to bring Parkdale to City Hall. She is a strong woman of colour and the most personable candidate in the running. "Bringing you to City Hall" is her motto.

David White was a former councillor for High Park whose main push in Parkdale has been to stop the waterfront parking lot project.

White's platform is pretty straightforward:
A clean Green Waterfront
Reform the city tax system
Affordable housing
Stop the Front Street Extension
Fix roads and laneways in Parkdale
Improve the TTC lines along King and Queen
Power to the Community Councils

Together these candidates can represent Parkdale at City Hall. But with Miller's endorsement for an outsider, they have already been discounted by the mayor before the race even started. While this may seem disastrous for these candidates, it is in fact worse for Perks and the Mayor. They look like they have no respect for homegrown Parkdale residents who dare to believe they can represent their own area at City Hall.