Dr. StrangeJob Wards Off the Pledge

Joe Ward, author of The Councillors’ Pledge, is running for Councillor in District 7. That’s right, the guy who wrote the councilor rule book and coerced incumbent and wannabe councilors to play by his rules has entered the political game. Is that fair? Isn’t that like the developer of Pokémon signing up for the Pokémon challenge? Is it wrong to set game rules, force everyone to play by those rules, and then declare yourself a game player? If so, just how bad would that be?

Joe Ward

Joe Ward, District 7 candidate, author of The Councillors’ Pledge

Would it be as bad as violating the articles of incorporation of the Port of Sydney Development Corporation (PSDC) by pompously appointing elected officials to the board of directors? No, not really.

Would it be as bad as selling Archibald’s Wharf for a measly $250,000 and then using the money to build a public outhouse? Nope.

Would it be as bad as spending $100,000+ a year on flower baskets when one in three CBRM children are living in poverty? Certainly not.

How about awarding nearly $2 million of sustainability grants to groups that do not meet the stated eligibility requirements? Not even close.

OK, so maybe the The Councillors’ Pledge isn’t such a bad idea after all. However, there are still a few items in Ward’s platform that are worrisome. How does he reconcile his decision to run in District 7 with his commitment to eliminate the $140/week travel allowance? District 7 covers well over 1,000 square kilometers. One or two weekly excursions around his ward and he will be rolling in expense claims. Heck, he would probably be losing money if he was limited to the current $140/week.

Also, just who does Ward’s “middle career” demographic refer to? Is this ageism, or is he discriminating between candidates who are too young to know better but actually care and candidates who know better but are too old to care? Some current councilors are heading into their senility years, so perhaps council would benefit from youthful candidates in their sensible years.

My biggest concern with Ward’s pledge is his emphasis on the use of social media. Sure, I think Twitter, Facebook, and all things internet are great communication tools, but his plan will not work unless a significant number of incumbents lose their seats in October. Otherwise, good luck trying to get that group to use modern methods of communication or even attempt to follow a simple politicians’ guide to using social media.

Hang on! Here’s a way to encourage our social media-challenged councilors to start using modern day communication tools, and Joe Ward’s social media expertise may be just the ticket to help make it happen. All Ward needs to do is create a shut up button for Facebook, Twitter, and all things internet.

Until next time—that’s my two cents’ worth.


Dr. StrangeJob


Dr. StrangeJob is a local satirical blogger, retired educator, social activist, and developer of the world’s first 12+1 step self-help group, Incompetents Anonymous.




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