Editorial: Groupthink absolves all in spyware scandal

What a stellar week in politics for the District of Saanich. But where to begin with all the intrigue and excitement?

What a stellar week in politics for the District of Saanich. But where to begin with all the intrigue and excitement?

Monday: We’re off with a bang as a one-vote majority on council snuffs out the possibility of letting its regional partners take even a momentary peek at what many considered a viable sewage treatment site. It was Watkiss NO Way for several politicians who had sat on the zombie-like CRD committee that helped flush $60 million down the sewage pipes of a failed plan at McLoughlin Point.

Tuesday: the Office of the B.C. Police Complaint Commissioner reveals that even mediation rockstar Wally Oppal can’t get Mayor Richard Atwell and Police Chief Bob Downie singing kumbaya over a burning stack of failed complaints. A review? No one needs a detailed review. Wally Oppal’s got this … or uh … never mind. Case closed!

Meanwhile, Atwell and the other bigwigs get gussied up for a summertime dip down at the ol’ swimming hole. (See photo below).

Wednesday: Now we’re into the stuff of legend. Saanich’s interim CAO Andy Laidlaw finally releases his in-house report on the spyware scandal, providing an incredible twist for employees who find themselves in a sticky situation. Laidlaw’s consultant, Brian Simmons, re-introduces the term “corporate decision” into the lexicon of local government. This bold new decision-making approach goes something like this: If everyone thinks and acts equally incompetently, then no one’s to blame! It’s too simplistic to point fingers. I mean, chain of command is so passé. Did you know Saanich has more than 170 parks? Now that’s newsworthy.

What dramatic revelations will Saanich readers discover next week? Tune in to find out!



(Photo from left, Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps, Saanich Mayor Richard Atwell and Esquimalt Mayor Barb Desjardins go retro with some old-fashioned mustaches to match their vintage swimsuits outside Victoria City Hall in promotion of the fourth annual Gorge Swim Fest, set for Sunday Aug. 9 in Bamfield Park and Esquimalt Gorge Park. Image credit: Don Denton/Black Press)

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