Maxed Out 

A heroic effort from the West Side

Democracies are delicate things. A painful look on either side of the 49 th should give ample illustration to that point.

But corruption and scandal aside, the biggest threats to viable democracy are apathy and acquiescence, to which I shall add a third ‘a’, acclamation.

With Whistler gearing up to go to the polls this November – yeah, I know; no sign of Whistler gearing up for anything except summer but trust me on this, it’s happening – two things are relatively certain: a whole bunch of people you’ve probably never heard of will run for council and thus far, nobody’s lining up to run for mayor.

That’s a scandal. Well, maybe scandal is too harsh a word. Even with all the Olympic™ money filtering through town it’s not as though any hanky-panky is going on. I mean, Olympics™? Scandal? How likely is that?

And this isn’t to say I have any personal animus against Hizzonhor, the sitting mayor for life. His Hughness is a fine mayor; no scandal there. No cigar games with comely aides, no money laundering through Muni Hall, no megalomaniacal visions of grandeur. Hugh’s a regular guy. He’s one of us. Former patroller, small business owner, Joe six-pack made good. Probably the worst thing that can be said against the Hughster is he has trouble putting his vision of Whistler into words, occasionally leaving one with the erroneous impression he has none… other than being the unnamed home of the 2010 Olympics™.

But it would be an affront to democracy to let him stand unchallenged for yet another term in the mayor’s chair. That is why, today, using this forum entrusted to me by my very supportive publisher and editor, I’d like to formally launch what I consider a formidable challenge to our seemingly unbeatable mayor.

No, it’s not me, you ninny. Relax. You have to be a Canadian citizen to even vote in this backwater, let alone run for public office. Maybe next time.

I’m here today to formally launch the Galt for Mayor campaign.

Running under the newly-formed Never Ending Party (NEP), I’m proud to throw a real Whistler hero to the lions, Dave Galt.

Why Dave? Why now? Well, as Dave says, "Hell, I could use a good paying job that leaves me plenty of time for golf too."

According to campaign manager, Bob Penner – Whistler’s, and one of Canada’s, foremost authority on crop and ice circles – "Dave’s a real hero. Dave saved West Side Road from going up in flames the other day when the Burgess’ garage caught fire. Hugh (Mayor Hugh O’Reilly) may be a preventive kind of guy, being a chimney sweep and all, but Dave really knows what to do when he sees a fire. He acts!"

Dave was, in fact, Johnny-on-the-spot last week when his neighbours’, Rob and Jan Burgess, garage caught fire. Ignoring grave personal peril, he rushed into their home, swiped their car keys, threw himself into the fires of Hades and drove their car to safety, thereby preventing a certain explosion that would have, in the words of one of Whistler’s firefighters, "…lit up the homes on West Side Road and made the burning Iraqi oil fields look like a Girl Guide weenie roast." Or words to that effect.

Ever effacing, Dave played down his heroics. "Weren’t nothing. I was just concerned Rob’s stash, er, car might catch before the fire department got here. Anyone who knew how to break into their house woulda done the same thing."

Asked about his run for the mayor’s office, Dave responded in typically modest fashion, "That’s bullshit. I’m not running for mayor."

What a kidder, folks.

I caught up with Dave the other day and was able to ask him some questions about his nascent run for office.

Max: Hey Dave, nice job with the fire. What a hero.

Dave: You’re not going to write anything about that, are you?

Max: Not if you don’t want me to.

Dave: I don’t.

Max: Okie dokie. What about running for mayor?

Dave: I’m not running for mayor, you moron.

Max: Whatever. So tell me about the NEP’s party platform. Do you have positions on, say, affordable housing and financial tools, things like that?

Dave: I don’t have a party platform. I have a party barge, as you know, and many a hare-brained scheme has been launched on the tranquil waters of Alta Lake.

Max: So what you’re saying is it’s too early to formalize a party platform; you have to feel out the voters on what’s important to them. That’s very astute, Dave.

Dave: I’m not running for mayor. How many times do I have to tell you?

Max: Right. So, Dave, is it true you said on the campaign trail that one of the most pressing matters and the single biggest scandal at Muni Hall was paying the administrator an additional $1.2 million bucks over the next five years to be "our man" on VANOC, a move I believe you termed a deal with the devil because the reform wing of council didn’t have the votes to oust him any other way?

Dave: What are you talking about? I’ve never been on the campaign trail and I’ve never said whatever you just said I said because frankly, I don’t even know what you’re talking about.

Max: Wow, Dave, you’re a natural politician. It’s as though you’ve been ducking tough questions your whole life. Well, if you don’t want to talk about that, what about the Olympics™? Is it true you said the most memorable thing we could do, now that we’ve exposed the 2010 Olympics™ for the green sham it really is, is get all the potheads in town to lay down a pall of smoke so thick during the Olympics™ it’d be visible from space, thereby rendering it impossible for any athlete competing in Whistler to pass a drug test and vindicating Ross’s story?

Dave: No, I didn’t say that.

Max: Oh.

Dave: I think you said that.

Max: Hmmm. I knew I’d heard it somewhere. Well then, isn’t it true you claimed solidarity with CUPE local 2010 in their attempt to negotiate a first contract that included a $4,000 "Whistler premium" since it was Muni Hall itself that established precedence for a Whistler premium when it opened the vaults for certain, well-known, senior managers who get paid way more than people holding similar positions in similar size towns just because it’s so expensive to live in Whistler?

Dave: No. I said I’d like an extra $4,000 too. You got a match?

Max: No, why?

Dave: Just wondering.

Max: Well, good luck with your campaign for mayor, Dave. Whistler needs more heroes. I hear your party headquarters is the smoking room at Tapley’s in case people want to come by and make donations or volunteer for your campaign.

Dave: Get stuffed. I’m not running for mayor.

Max: Yeah, what a kidder.

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