One more down. Now arrest the rest of them will you?

I have to give CPS a giant thumbs up for the professionalism and patience they displayed while arresting this very uncooperative criminal squatter at Olympic Plaza.

We can see what strategy remains to these desperate and dwindling squatters. They have lost all credibility with Calgarians over the last month with their actions from flag defacement to defecation in the park to stealing electricity from Calgarian taxpayers. Now these guys simply hope to get arrested so that they can play victims.

The squatters had better hope that when their much overdue mass-arrest arrives that they are better actors than Ms Scout in the video below as she unconvincingly pretends that she is being harmed while she resists arrest. As is noted in the Herald and seen on the video, the officer could fit a finger within the handcuff and Scout’s claims of bleeding were simply bull.

Kicking, screaming and whining our occupiers shall go. I expect they will be arrested sometime this coming weekend after yet another Canadian judge affirms that there indeed is still no Charter right to squat in a park. They likely will follow Scout’s example through resisting arrest and then falsely claiming brutality. The truth has never really been a goal with the “occupy” Calgary squatters.

Something that really demonstrates the disconnect from reality that the squatters and their few supporters have is the fact that it was squatter supporters who posted this video. They really think this video will earn them sympathy and that it displays police brutality.

Below is a quote from “occupy” Calgary representative Brent Talbot speaking on their facebook group. He implies that Scout was racially profiled and was “brutely” arrested for no reason.

Brent Talbot :
I am calling for a movement of our Occupation to CPS as we just had one of our members racially profiled and brutely removed for sitting quietly and having a conversation. We have had a constant presence of Bylaw and CPS, since we’ve been under media blackout!!

Again total departure from the truth. Sarah Scout had existing warrants for her arrest for some prior offenses. She then gained herself an obstruction charge for refusing to give her name to a peace officer (likely to try and hide from her arrest warrants) and then she topped it off with the charge of resisting arrest which we can see is well justified in the video.

There is no “media blackout” either. There simply has not been much of note to cover aside from there still being squatters polluting and damaging our park. That can only be repeated so many times as we wait for the city to gain the courage to evict them.

It is long overdue that we scrape the remnants of the occupy movement from our park. We can see that these illegal squatters will resist but what other course have they left us all?

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Thieving squatters!!

 

Well the City of Calgary keeps giving them inches and the squatters keep taking miles (as can be expected).

Despite every other major city in Canada having gotten rid of their squatters (with no Charter problems), Calgary officials are still completely terrified to enforce our bylaws.

Well, emboldened by the lawless state that the city has granted them the “occupy” Calgary squatters have now taken to stealing our electricity.

In the discussion from their facebook site below, we can see them happily bragging that they now have hotplates and heat in their little illegal camp in Olympic Plaza.

The squatters destroy the bathroom at Olympic Plaza, the City gives them porta-potties on the taxpayers (though the squatters still poop on the ground).

Now things are getting cool out, so the city is turning a blind eye while the squatters steal electricity from us.

How much was your electric bill last month? Perhaps you should send it to Nenshi and say you are expressing yourself thus are entitled to free power on the taxpayers.

We won’t enforce bylaws. How about criminal laws then? Theft is still a crime is it not?

Just because it is there, it does not mean that one can simply take it. By that logic they can begin to steal and sell park benches and other fixtures simply because they were not fastened down securely enough.

In the discussion below, it can be seen that a couple of them understand that this is wrong. Most appear happy to continue to steal from Calgary taxpayers however and clearly will continue to do so until the law is enforced. That is the nature of their blind entitlement.

It can be seen in this discussion that the squatters had already had one problem when they tried to steal power from Teatro restaurant before.

Is it enough for law enforcement to move in yet Nenshi? Chief Hanson? Do they have to begin stealing from our very houses next?

The transcript below is directly quoted from the Occupy Calgary Facebook organizational site.

Henyk Szydlowski
WE HAVE ELECTRICITY AT THE CAMP!!! HOTPLATES, SPACE HEATERS, (electric)BLANKETS, GLOVES, HOT MEALS ARE STILL BEING ACCEPTED AND APPRECIATED. BRING A PAINTED STONE, FAKE FLOWERS, HOLIDAY LIGHTS, ANYTHING.. LET’S MAKE THE PARK BEAUTIFUL FOR FRIDAY AND SHOW THE PUBLIC WE AREN’T ANIMALS… ? LOVE YOU ALL ?
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LikeUnlike · ·Unfollow PostFollow Post · 4 hours ago near Calgary

8 people like this.

Henyk Szydlowski bump
3 hours ago · LikeUnlike

Rob Green bump?
3 hours ago · LikeUnlike

Mandi Schrader:
How did you get electricity?
3 hours ago · LikeUnlike · 1Loading…

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Henyk Szydlowski:
they tuned it on.. for the cristmas lights and decoration.. they are aware that we are using it and haven’t batted an eye lash.
3 hours ago · LikeUnlike · 1Loading…

Rob Green what’s bump?
3 hours ago · LikeUnlike

Mandi Schrader:
Bump means you have no comment but want to push the post higher on the page.
3 hours ago · LikeUnlike

Kym Chi:
Is the christmas tree still there?? Please place notes of wishes and hopes for a better world on it 🙂 ? It will go well with the new christmas theme of the park!
3 hours ago · LikeUnlike · 1Loading…

Christopher Fox McMillan:
In really hope we’re not taking it without paying, cause thats stealing, and one of the things that got us into trouble with Teatro a few weeks back
3 hours ago · LikeUnlike · 3Loading…

Michael Belanger:
If anyone has talked to any city worker on this and has contact info where we could send funds to….not be stealing….I’m all for pitching in some change 🙂
3 hours ago via mobile · LikeUnlike · 2Loading…

Mandi Schrader:
I thought Teatro agreed to provide power?
3 hours ago · LikeUnlike

Henyk Szydlowski:
?Christopher Fox McMillan, officers of both cps and bylaw have seen us using it and said nothing of the like. As well, 95% of the city’s electricity comes from wind farming south of the city.. and being that we are taxpaying citizens of said city we are well within our rights to use what’s there.. it would be absolutely stupid not too.
3 hours ago · LikeUnlike

Henyk Szydlowski:
Let not turn this into some silly semantic argument.. we are cold hungry, now we have means to cook and stay warm SAFELY!!
3 hours ago · LikeUnlike · 1Loading…

Henyk Szydlowski:
?+ they can’t file ANY new evidence on damages and costs because the matter is already been filed.. so chances are they will simply just say whatever.. they aren’t bothering us at all anymore because they’re sure we’re out on friday.. enjoy the moment.
3 hours ago · LikeUnlike · 3Loading…

Ben Kendrick:
?90% of calgarys electricity come frim oil and gas not wind. Nice idea though.
3 hours ago via mobile · LikeUnlike

Nicole RunningRabbit:
Exactly, Henyk. to finally have some human rights to running water in the bathrooms during park hours, power for heaters & cooking fresh food & keeping surfaces disinfected w/hot water & bleach is a MIRACLE.

Please don’t rain on our parade today.

People @ camp deserve a break.

i Love You, my dear occu-sisters, occu-brothers, occu-lovers & occu-haters. 😉 sick in bed today & i miss You all very much.
3 hours ago via mobile · LikeUnlike · 2Loading…

Henyk Szydlowski:
Thank you Nicole, get well soon..! ?
3 hours ago · LikeUnlike · 1Loading…

Henyk Szydlowski bump
3 hours ago · LikeUnlike

Henyk Szydlowski:
Hey John Johnson, quit being a nay-sayer and let us have this one alright…
3 hours ago · LikeUnlike

John Johnson:
I nay say nay about this.
3 hours ago via mobile · LikeUnlike · 4Loading…

Ben Kendrick:
Hope you can keep the electricity.
2 hours ago via mobile · LikeUnlike

Christopher Fox McMillan:
I am glad we now have access to electricity thats excellent. but when people looking from the outside see us taking electricity which we aren’t paying for when we have the ability to do gives credence to their calls of get the thieving hippies out. It puts truth to their words that we are costing them money, and it feeds into the negative feedback loop that is our critics. I don’t want to give them any more firepower than they already have

Electricity is not free, it takes things to produce (whether it be windmills or dead dinosaur plants), and those things cost money.
2 hours ago · LikeUnlike · 2Loading…

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Chris A Hooymans:
Please do not waste power on Christmas lights.
2 hours ago · LikeUnlike · 3Loading…

MissConny Kavela:
GREAT NEWS!! ?
about an hour ago via mobile · LikeUnlike

Jan Bacon:
agreed, the electricity is *not* free, I will not be party to theft, even from the City. So far Occupy has done nothing illegal, just civil disobedience. I think it will just rub salt into open sores. Beautifying can be done with more coloured ice, flowers, sparkly garlands and cards and notes…etc… coming down (hugs)
about an hour ago · LikeUnlike

Ben Kendrick:
They might bring it up in court.
about an hour ago via mobile · LikeUnlike

Chris A Hooymans:
Surreptitious use to charge phones or to boil some tea would be probably be okay, but setting up a Christmas display might be pushing it somewhat.
45 minutes ago · LikeUnlike

Wendy Pergentile:
I suggest not using it unless you have permission from the City. They may need electricity there at this time, however, they may be setting you all up for more trouble.
28 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
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I am an artist! No handouts required thanks.

Thanks to the occupy movement, a common theme in political discussion lately has been entitlement. The complainers squatting in our city park and the keyboard quarterbacks who support and enable the squatters regularly display an astonishing level of entitlement and an almost complete lack of any sense of personal responsibility for anything. Those two traits often go hand in hand of course.

Few can demonstrate a sense of entitlement better than some elements of Canada’s arts community. The lobbying is endless and it is essentially implied that all forms of art will simply wither and die without massive subsidies from taxpayers.

I contend that the over-subsidization of forms of art actually reduces the quality of the art itself. I blogged on this a few years ago and detailed some of the wonderful productions we have seen with tax-funded art.

To go further, I can demonstrate first hand that art can and does exist without a dime of tax funding.

I spent three winters in Canada’s Arctic working on oil and gas exploration programs. I was always impressed by some of the fine carvings produced by the Inuit and Inuvialuit people up there. One season I decided to try my own hand at carving upon returning home. I already had some means for stonework due to having done some fossil restoration work and  gem cutting so aside from some more specialized rasps and some rough material, my investment was little.

With a great deal of dust, countless failed efforts and many pounds of wasted rock I began to produce some reasonably acceptable sculptures. I generally stuck to wildlife and native themes as they were what I was familiar with and they were what were popular sellers at the outlet in Canmore that began to carry my pieces. Sales were sporadic but carvings did sell for a modest price and I was simply happy to see that some people were willing to spend a few bucks to own some work done by a middling artist like myself.

The last few years have not left me much time for carving. I sold all but the carving pictured below so that is all that I can display here.

I decided one weekend to let go with a large piece of stone and to simply see where it took me. I clearly had something on my mind that weekend but I simply could not put my finger on it. Either way, my imagination produced the freeform abstract piece pictured below. I felt that Jane was my inspiration for this one so instead of selling it like all the others I kept it and gave it to Jane.

Jane muttered something about Freud and gave the carving a spot of prominence in her office.

Now as can be seen, I am not going to be a master sculptor. I sold some carvings and made a few bucks and I am happy with that. There is simply a combination of a lack of demand and a lack of skill on my part to make a living through the carving. I can accept that. Sure I would rather spend my days working on my own schedule and carving what I please. That simply isn’t in the cards for me so I make my living in the energy sector while I enjoy myself carving and making a few extra bucks now and then.

I like to think I am no less an artist than any other. I create for my own enjoyment and I hope that some others enjoy what I have created. Is that not what it is all about? Well, this sort of creation is clearly quite possible without government subsidy.

Now for contrast, let me introduce you to a Calgarian artist named Len Cochrane. There are countless artists in Calgary of course. The reason I am singling out Len here is that Len has been a prominent, belligerent and abrasive supporter of the “occupy” Calgary squatters on social media. Len is one of those who attacks all who question the squatters, yet can’t be bothered to put his own butt on the line and camp down there himself as far as I can tell.

Len also displays that great sense of victimhood, entitlement and bitterness that our local squatters and some of the arts community hold in such a clear manner that I could not find a better example to demonstrate just who is demanding tax funding for arts. Below is a snap from Len’s website where in a couple sentences we pretty much see what it is all about.

OK, in the first part of his FAQ Len advises all starting artists to quit while they are ahead and implies that Canada does not support artists. I am not sure how much support it will take for artists to feel supported but clearly it has not been enough for poor Len here.

According to  Stats Canada, governments on all levels spent a cumulative total of almost $10 billion on culture in 2008-2009. It has only gone up since. Culture covers a broad range of things of course. As the site points out, much of it is in parks and broadcasting. Broadcasting has been used a great deal in the promotion and display of our arts of course particularly through our $1.2 billion per year behemoth called the CBC. Museums, galleries and events are all promoted through the culture department. Rest assured, billions are being spent on the arts.

On the private level a similar level is directed at Canadian arts. Many large corporations sponsor countless events and venues. The squatters may note that they are camped next to the Epcor center for performing arts. Large corporations commission and purchase millions in art every year too. Then there are the millions and millions of dollars spent by individual Canadians purchasing everything from $10 handmade keychains to seven figure paintings and everything in between.

So how much would it take before poor Len feels that the arts are supported in Canada? $15 billion? $20 billion?

Is it really a case that the arts are not supported in Canada or is it simply a case that Len’s art has not seen any direct support?

From what can be gathered from the website, it looks like Len has been a victim of the police and health services due to an apparent basement tattoo parlour. Of course Len feels he has done nothing wrong and claims that police and health services corruption are what got him. It was all a conspiracy to shut him down.

There are reasons for health regulations Len. Tattooing involves piercing people’s flesh repeatedly with a needle. If somebody is going to charge for that service, yes I expect a degree of regulation to be involved. Were you claiming the revenues from that operation by the way? One wouldn’t like to think that you were withholding income taxes that should go towards other starving artists.

Every self-styled starving artist has a story to tell and excuses to be made. Art like everything else requires dedication and hard work for success in most cases. That is the true hurdle that holds back many of these entitled artists.

The world does not owe us a living in whatever endeavor that we choose. So you want to make a living painting? Good for you. I hope it all works out. In the meantime instead of whining and blaming the world for your woes how about getting a job and paying your own way until your art blossoms?

I met an unlikely sort of fellow last year who was pumping gas at a Medicine Hat gas station. He was an interesting little fellow and was always practicing on his well-worn violin when cars were not about. He had travelled the year before to Montreal where he met some other kindred souls. They formed a group, all chipped in and had a CD pressed with some of their music. A local artist designed a very funky jacket for it too. He sold me a copy for $15 and then went on to the next gas customer. The music was interesting but not to my taste. All the same, I have no regrets on that small purchase. That fellow was overjoyed with the sale of the CD. I could tell that his joy was not so much for the $15, but simply that somebody would listen to what he and his friends produced.

That man is an artist and I have nothing but respect for him. Instead of sitting, begging and making excuses he went out and had his product produced. He works to pay his bills and works to spread his art at the same time. He is a true artist in every sense.

To the other artists who do nothing but complain and expect success handed to them I say the same thing that I always do when I encounter them: “No thank you. I don’t want fries with that.”

 

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Ever present reminder.

A few years ago I had finished a stint of a couple months on an Arctic oil exploration program and I had decided to go to Vegas to feel some heat and blow off some steam. My accounts were full and my liver was empty so while still a little out of sorts from my time on the Beaufort I hustled Jane and myself onto a plane and headed south. After long stretches in isolated areas, I can be a little out of sorts for awhile.

At the end of a long day travelling the strip, I was tired and more than a little tipsy. Still, I decided to wind down the evening at my hotel through feeding the slots some more cash for awhile. Now, I can be a terrible procrastinator in many ways. In this case, my problem was an overstuffed wallet that was literally falling apart at the seams. Those who remember the old Seinfeld episode with George Costanza’s wallet know what I am talking about. Well in reaching into my wallet to get another bill to fire into that infernal gambling machine, I slipped and my wallet along with all of it’s contents spilled all over the floor. On my hands and knees I had to scramble to round up my ID, credit cards and such as people walked upon my scattered documents. It was a tough job as for some reason my eyes were seeing double.

Then and there I vowed that my procrastination has come to an end! I swore that I would not rest that night until I had a new wallet and I would buy one at the first store that carried them! Well dear reader, in the Bellagio there simply are not many cost conscious stores carrying wallets. True to my word I found a shop however. It was the Gucci store.

To complicate things, none of the wallets on display had prices attached to them. “No matter.” I thought to myself. I am getting a new wallet no matter what anyway. I found an appropriate bifold and had the clerk take it to the register for me. I was asked if I wanted it gift wrapped. I said no I could use it right now.

I was then asked to pay $360! To make it worse, the American dollar was still worth somewhat more than ours at the time.

My inebriated pride would not allow me to back down so I shelled out the cash, pocketed the wallet and went off to seek another drink in hopes of numbing the effect of my idiotic purchase.

Below is a shot of the now worn but still distinctly Gucci wallet. I still carry it with me every day.

Now there is more to this story than simply pointing out an incident of impulsive purchasing idiocy on my part. The wallet has actually paid for itself in the funds it has saved me.

You see, I am prone to some impulsive moves at times and often it involves spending money. Now, every time I want to spend money on anything, I have to pull out my wallet. The shining telltale letter G stares out at me every time and forces me to ask myself if what I am buying is really a good idea. It is astounding how many things can be deferred with just a moment of second thought. Had I bought shoes or a belt I would not have that constant reminder. With a wallet there is no choice. I must be reminded of my stupid purchase every time I spend more money.

Now this concept can be utilized by our elected officials. I propose that we get a 15×20 foot blowup made of the picture below and have it hanging in city hall facing our council.

Yes. Before every spending notion and decision I think every council member including our Mayor must stare at that picture for a minute. Every council member should have a constant reminder of what happens when they vote for ill conceived vanity projects. Nothing displays that more than the hideous, budget-blown, year behind schedule, sole sourced “Peace Bridge” that is now polluting our landscape with it’s Chinese finger-trap appearance. The only thing uglier in our downtown right now is that camp of squatters in Olympic Plaza (you knew I had to at least mention them once).

The picture should make them ask themselves what they did not when they approved that ugly thing in the first place. Do we need this? Can we afford this? Is this the best deal for this? Should we put this to tender?

This idea can be effective for all levels of government.

The MagCan plant that cost Alberta taxpayers hundreds of millions which is now falling apart near High River should be pictured and displayed prominently in the legislature chambers as a reminder of idiotic spending.

The above picture of the duel-colored and profound “Voice of Fire” that our federal government purchased for $1.8 million dollars should hang in the house of commons for all to enjoy and to remind them of what foolishness they are capable of.

Like government, I can be prone to foolish spending decisions. Unlike government, I only am spending my own money. If I can learn to improve my spending through simple reminders of my past mistakes, I don’t see why legislators can’t too.

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Entitled!

There are so many adjectives that help describe our “occupy” Calgary squatters from bitter to lazy to unwashed. Entitled really does encapsulate their attitude most effectively though (envious is a close second).

What has me going this time is a series of comments that have been submitted by a visitor to my blog over the last week or so. I do indeed moderate the comments on this blog and with good reason. Hardly a day goes by where somebody does not try to place an obscenity laced tirade in the comment section of one of the postings. Other postings can be prone to being libelous and others simply don’t make sense. I have not, do not, and will not allow that crap on my blog.

What is outstanding recently though is that one persistent “occupy” Calgary supporter wrote a very long and detailed piece in my comment section last week. The diatribe had to be at least a couple thousand words and went everywhere from some semi-coherent arguments in favor of the squatters residing in Olympic Plaza to some oddball conspiracy theories about corporations. It was clear though that this person had taken their time to lay out their case to present on my site. Unfortunately this fool prefaced the piece with two paragraphs that were intent on questioning my mental well-being and the size of my genitalia.

To confirm by the way, yes I am a little crazy and I am not exceptionally endowed in the reproductive sense.  These questions were clearly on top of the mind of my commenter.

Either way, I deleted the comment out of hand. I do allow contrary opinion in the comments area but really have little time for the personal insults. Since then though I have had almost daily comments from this person demanding that I post their comment. This person has become increasingly agitated claiming that I have violated their free speech and that I absolutely must post their opinion in my comments. I was told that it is unfair that I only allow my own view and that I should be less biased.

I was content to enjoy the daily ravings while envisioning this squatter supporter sitting in Mom’s basement furiously and indignantly typing as I continued to ignore the daily demands. I swear I could almost hear the tortured keyboard crying for mercy as it was beaten by fat entitled fingers.

The last comment crossed a line however and I have been forced to address the commenter. In the last comment it was mentioned that I and my site have gained a degree of profile from the whole “occupy” thing and I have a “social obligation” to allow counterpoints to my postings on this site.

Well alas, that comment caused me to let out a snorting laugh which in turn led to a mouthful of Balvenie Doublewood evacuating from my nostrils.

Two terrible crimes happened here. One: my poor nostrils were burned terribly. Two: some fine single-malt was outright wasted. Both are unforgivable crimes.

Now lets get some things straight. I owe no “social obligation” to anybody on this site. The only thing I owe on this site are the payments for hosting and domain registration. I own this place lock, stock and barrel and can post (or not post) whatever the hell I want and I will continue to do so.

The squatters and their supporters continually and mistakenly ramble on with their misguided interpretations of our rights. One right the squatters continually overlook is that of private property! Look up on your screen dear squatters and read the domain URL. It is indeed http://www.corymorgan.com The domain is not http://www.FreeForAllOpinions.com or http://www.PointCounterPoint.com It is simply named after myself as this is the sandbox where I have staked my opinionated ground.

I am under no obligation to be unbiased and I am under no obligation to be nice. I don’t recall ever having claimed to be either of those things anyway.

Your speech dear squatter is not being hindered by my refusal to post your comments. You are free to speak and say whatever you like. You just can’t do it here.

Our squatters and their supporters need to quit trying to take our Charter rights as blind absolutes to the point on infringing on the rights and comfort of others. We see that here as my property rights are ignored and we see it in Olympic Plaza as park users are displaced and taxpayers foot the bill for a collection of fools squatting in tents.

If you squatters want a voice here is what  you need to do. Quit sitting and whining in the park. Go out and join the rest of our Liberal Arts graduates in the barista trade. With a few weeks and a few hundred smiley faces drawn in lattes, you should have more than enough money to buy your own domain and write whatever you like upon it. Perhaps http://www.TheWorldOwesMeSomething.com or http://www.DirectFromMomsBasement.com or something of the sort. Rest assured, you will not get an unhindered soapbox at http://www.corymorgan.com

Thousands of people have been coming here and reading my reflections on my visits to the “occupy” Calgary squatter site on numerous occasions. I appreciate and am flattered that so many people find what I write worth reading (even if not all agree with it). Lets be clear though, the readers owe me nothing and I owe them nothing.

The “occupy” crowd still appears to be stumped as to why public support for them has completely evaporated. I think more than a month of hearing “I want” and “I demand” and “you owe me” from a bunch of layabouts has pretty much done it in. Get off your butts and do something guys and perhaps you will earn a grain of that respect that you think you deserve.

Until then I will continue to expose the hypocrisy and idiocy of the “occupy” Calgary movement. I will call it like I see it and I make no apologies.

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Budget time!!

Well, lets see. Courts across the country are indeed proving that there is not, never has been and never will be a Charter protected right to squat illegally in a city park under the guise of freedom of expression. Sadly court time had to be wasted in reaffirming this reality as common sense on the part of city officials should have ended all this squatting long ago.

Vancouver, Toronto and Edmonton are all moving and will be getting rid of their illegal squatters soon. Regina, Saskatoon, Victoria, London and Halifax have all evicted the squatters from their park.

Despite all this, Nenshi’s Calgary is still intent on negotiating with what can now only be called extortionists. These guys are clearly breaking the law and are demanding that the city provide them with a long list of freebies in order for them to consider ending their illegal squatting.

The city’s last offer (way too generous as it was) was spit upon by the squatters who said they would like to light it on fire. That offer from the city would have provided the extortionists with the means to hold several public forums and to establish what could be a permanent information booth for them near the plaza.

I am sure that many charities and lobby groups would love to have free hosted public forums and free permanent information booths downtown. Alas, legitimate groups have been playing by acceptable rules of society. Clearly the way to get things is to break the law. Nenshi and the rest of the cowardly officials will then heap offers upon your cause in hopes that you consider becoming law-abiding again.

Now the squatters have been emboldened further (who can blame them?) by the craven attempts of capitulation from the city and they are drafting new demands. Since it is budget time, I would like to itemize these demands so that Nenshi can add them to the budget deliberations as he clearly is not afraid of throwing city tax money at our illegal squatters (on top of the estimated $40,000 in damage that the squatters have already done to our park).

From the mouths of squatters themselves:

1) That the city find a place agreeable to OC where we can hold General Assemblies in safety and warmth.

2) That the city will cover rent for said place.

I guess it should go without saying that the squatters expect us to pay for everything but they made sure to make a specific demand for that to be sure.

Now they hold their GAs daily and have been known to hold them twice per day. Turnout is extremely variable but lets be generous and assume that they will need daily space for as many as 60 people. The Epcor center is right next to the squatters so would be an ideal new warm spot for their general assemblies. Lets be kind on the costs though and just assume that they will hold one meeting per day in that room.

Daily meetings for 60 in meeting room next to Olympic Plaza: $277,400
Of course with regular scheduling that could even be knocked down to a cool $250,000

4) That the city pay to hold sixteen GAs as stated above with time/date/location/format of our choosing. (Maybe even twenty to get us through our winter of discontent with weekly GAs).

Again they wanted to ensure that the taxpayers would cover everything. Now when I went down to Olympic Plaza, they advertised a General Assembly every day at 1:00pm and 6:00pm if I recall. Perhaps it has now moved to sporadic or maybe there are different categories. Some are general General Assemblies while others are Uber Big General Assemblies. It really does not need to make sense or have consistency. Nothing else from the squatters has so far.

Due to the above ambiguity, I will raise the Epcor room cost back to the initial estimate that I had reduced for what I thought would be regular scheduling of the room.

5) That the city permit one tent at the plaza, or at a mutually agreed location, as an info booth to disseminate information to the public and to operate during normal park hours.

OK so they want permanent prime space downtown. Well, for a 10×10 vending tent on Steven Avenue it is $520 per month plus GST so that comes to about $6552 per year.

6) That the city provide electricity during normal park hours to ensure adequate lighting in and around the information tent referred to in 5) and provide assistance (CFD, Bylaw) in setting up an adequate and compliant heating system for the information tent referred to in 5). Also, that the city provide security for the information tent during off hours.

Hmm. So they want the tent to remain 24/7, with electric, heat and security. That is essentially a small free-standing business in downtown Calgary. Lets give that a cost of around $200,000 and forgo the earlier vending tent estimate.

7) That the city pay for three evenings rental of the largest rooms at every Community Hall in Calgary for the purpose of holding public forums.

This one is cute. I am afraid that at three days each, they would not be able to get through all of the meetings in one year as there are too many halls in Calgary. Lets just assume one every day all year then. My community hall charges $500 for it’s largest room for a night. It is about an average sized hall. There will be a meeting held at a hall in somewhere in Calgary every day of the year.

Demand for hall rentals: $182,500

8) That the city pay for the rental of all equipment necessary to hold such forums. For example: mic’s, amp’s, speakers, tables, chairs etc. Including internet access for live steaming.

Tables and chairs are usually included with most halls. Sound systems and internet are extra though. Lets just be generous and add $100 per night.

Extras: $36,500

9) That the city pay to advertise all public forums. Including TV, radio, newspapers, community newsletters, etc.

Hmm, I am afraid that gets really pricey. Lets just assume that you get good deals on advertising in all of those mediums for 365 meetings per year with a total being about $2,000 per day.

Advertising on all forms of media: $730,000

10) That the city pay for a CPS presence at each public forum for the duration of the meeting.

Afraid I can’t find a pricing guide for genuine armed police officers. I assure you it will be at least $500 per meeting.

Personal police presence: $182,500

Well at the moment that is all they have come up with so far. Rest assured their greedy little entitled minds will come up with more things that they feel hardworking taxpayers owe them.

Nenshi has made it clear that he is OK with squatters being in our park ad infinitum so this had best be added into Calgary’s city budget.

The cost annually to keep up with he latest extortion demands being made by “occupy” Calgary squatters totals:

$1,608,900!!!

Please include this in the budget deliberations Mayor Nenshi.

Of course you could also grow a set, do your job and kick the damn illegal squatters from our park too.

The above pricing does not account for leap years nor further illegal occupations of parks that will be sure to follow upon capitulation to extortion by the city of Calgary.

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The dangerous remnants of “occupy” Calgary.

I guess it could be arguable as to when “occupy” Calgary lost all credibility. For some such as myself, it was the moment that a legitimate march ended on October 15 and turned into an encampment of squatters in Olympic Plaza and St. Patrick’s Island. For some it was within a few days as it was clear that there really was no distinct goal or message to be had in the squatting and that the time was being wasted.

Clearly a large turning point for even some of the most staunch supporters of “occupy” Calgary was when a group of extremists from the Olympic Plaza squatters actually went out of their way to interfere with a legitimate effort to find long-term housing for the truly and chronically homeless who were encamped at St. Patricks Island.

The incident linked above proved very clearly that the organizers and hardcores in the Calgary “occupy” movement could not care less about the truly disadvantaged. For these people to try to purposely interfere with efforts to aid the homeless so that they could keep some homeless folks in their camp for good optics was nothing less than repugnant. Resolutions soon followed in the Olympic Plaza camp to stop feeding homeless and to stop letting them use their tents. The “occupiers” love using the homeless for talking points and for optics but they really don’t care much for associating with them.

Things continued to degenerate with the Calgary “occupy” movement as more and more incidents drove moderate and rational people away from the squatter encampment. Calgarians were disgusted to find that these people had been defecating in our park and had defaced Canadian flags leading up to Remembrance day.

The dwindling support for and increasing extremes within the movement became very evident a couple weeks ago when a much-touted, union backed rally could not even draw 50 people. Rather than listen to the handful of speakers, many occupiers chose instead to attack a man in a chicken suit who was counterprotesting.

Things continued to heat up as there were less and less occupiers and more and more people confronting the squatters and demanding that they leave our park. Scenes such as the two videos below illustrate the clear frustration on the part of citizens and the incoherent nature of the squatters.

Why is it that the only remaining squatters are increasingly nutty while we still see a fair degree of apparent support on social media?

Well, unfortunately there is a crowd of champagne socialists who while sitting comfortably in suburban homes they are vocally supporting and enabling some disadvantaged and troubled people squatting dangerously in a park. These hypocrites would not dare actually go sleep in a tent themselves. They are much more content drinking fine wine and drawing their battle lines on twitter and in facebook groups. These people will pop downtown now and then with some cookies to perk up their pawns and ensure that they stay on display.

This used to be very evident as we saw the somewhat moderate debating with the extreme on their organizational Facebook page (almost no actual squatters participating in in the facebook group). Slowly but surely the moderate thinkers were pushed away and the once open group has not become closed as these people recognize that their increasingly extreme ideas are costing them a loss in what little remaining public support may be out there.

Unfortunately the remnants of the squatters fall pretty much into two groups now. There are a few chronic, career protesters down there. These are the same kooks we see being teargassed and arrested at pretty much any event where more than a few people can be gathered. While insane and often violent, these people are often fairly bright and can take care of themselves so I am not too worried about them.

The next group are a bunch of predominantly young displaced people. I have met a few of them. They appear to have social and communicative challenges often and are truly not far from real homelessness. Some of these kids have substance abuse problems and others have more subtle but distinct challenges. These kids don’t really look at this as a movement and often can’t enunciate even why they are a part of it. They really don’t understand. These are kids who are displaced and have found what appears to be a welcoming social group. Unfortunately these kids are being terribly used by the remnants of the “occupy” movement.

The problem with the kids listed above is that things are becoming very very dangerous in Olympic Plaza. These young people are not well capable of taking care of themselves and have not been prone to making good long term decisions. That is what does make them ideal for padding the dwindling “occupy” movement but it does not make it ideal for these people to safely function in very adverse weather conditions.

Yesterday I went down to the squatter camp in Olympic Plaza for a visit. There I met one of the victims of a fire that happened a few days ago. He is pictured below.

Those are not typical white gloves this young fellow is wearing. Those are gauze and they are covering the terrible burns on this kid’s hands. His legs are burned as well and the wounds were already seeping through the bandages. The pain must be terrible and I have heard that the person who rescued this guy from the tent was pretty badly burned as well.

I never caught the kid’s name I am afraid. He politely approached me and began to awkwardly explain how he was confident that the candle in his tent had been put out and that he felt that somebody had broken into his tent, lit a second candle that had caused the fire and had left an incriminating lighter behind. I think the kid really believed that was the circumstance.

What was more disturbing than the terrible burns that this young man had gotten was the clear reality that this kid had some serious challenges. What those are I wont begin to guess but I can confidently say this kid needs assistance to get by and that a winter tent camp is a terrible environment for him to be in. Not only did this kid get horribly burned while desperately trying to stay warm on a winter night, he has come back for more. Treating burns is a long, painful and critical process. This kid (I sure wish I had caught his name) is at terrible risk for infection and these wounds may indeed become much worse. The tent camp is littered with garbage and feces and is far from a sterile environment. Environment aside, those bandages will need regular changing and his wounds need treating. I seriously doubt that will happen while squatting.

This all happened before temperatures plunged to the -20 that we have now. What will happen next? Will there be more fires? The tents are closely packed and insulated with cardboard. Tragedy can very easily happen. Are they all warm enough? Digits can very easily be lost to frostbite. Hypothermia leading to death can easily occur should somebody overindulge in a substance. It is not like passing out at home.

Things are only going to get worse down there as a Canadian winter moves in. Mayor Nenshi and other city officials should clear the camp if only for safety purposes. They fear to do anything due to apparent poor optics. Personally I would rather deal with poor optics as a politician than to have to live with a kid being disfigured or even worse due to my inaction.

The coldest of them all out there though are the hypocrites who sit in warm houses and enable this. These people who are using troubled kids as pawns for their undefinable cause. It truly is sick.

Mayor Nenshi, clean the squatters out. There is no message and this whole affair is clearly not harmless.

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Which Charter of Rights covers Calgary?

Well in this last few days we have seen a great deal of abuse of our Charter whether through using it as an excuse to illegally and dangerously squat in a city park to seeing our Mayor and city officials use the document as a shield to cower behind rather than do their jobs.

If illegally squatting in city parks is a Charter right, how did the cities below manage to evict their squatters?

Occupy protesters’ tents removed by police in London, Ontario.

Halifax police evict occupiers.

Occupy Victoria tent camp dismantled

Occupy Saskatoon protesters evicted from Gabriel Dumont park

Occupy Regina camp torn down by police

All of those cities are bound by the same Charter of Rights and Freedoms as Calgary are they not? Has the Supreme Court intervened on the actions of these cities? Have the cities been sued for Charter abuse?

The reason that those cities could clear out their illegal squatters is that THERE IS NO CHARTER RIGHT TO ILLEGALLY SQUAT IN PARKS!

I (and I am sure many Canadians) am sick and tired of this gross misinterpretation of our Charter being tossed out by cowardly city officials.

Speech is protected by the Charter. Expression is protected by the Charter. If it could be proven by the squatters that they can only express and speak through illegal squatting, then perhaps they would have a case. The onus of proof should be on the squatters and the law should be enforced in the meantime. The bottom line is that speech and expression can be done without squatting illegally in parks.

For Mayor Nensh, Chief Hanson and any other Calgary officials may I suggest that you read the charter and try to find the entrenched right to break laws and squat in parks. Just click on this paragraph.

Section one of the Charter is a section that city officials and squatters alike seem to like skipping over. I will paste it below:

1. The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms guarantees the rights and freedoms set out in it subject only to such reasonable limits prescribed by law as can be demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society.

I think laws against illegal squatting in parks are pretty reasonable dont you? There is a reason for this clause and a reason that it is at the beginning. The Charter exists for protection of fundamental rights and freedoms. It was recognized during the drafting though that reasonable limits had to be imposed as this is not a document intended to give license for an anarchistic free for all for every nut who wants to break local laws while claiming to be expressing themselves.

This has gone before the courts before. A group tried to protest through camping on Parliament Hill and they claimed free expression protected their illegal squatting. This went to court twice and both times it was ruled that there is no Charter Right to squat in parks.

The only excuse left for the city of Calgary in this mess is simple cowardice. Mayor Nenshi and others are hoping that the weather will do their job for them. Due to that two people got hurt when a tent caught fire as a squatter tried to heat himself with a candle. There is potential for frostbite, more fires and hypothermia if that shantytown of cardboard and tents is allowed to remain as temperatures plummet. The responsibilty of those events can rest solidily on the laps of Calgary officials who are afraid to enact our common sense laws.

There is no Charter right to ignore fire codes either.

Mayor Nenshi, Chief Hanson and Bylaw Bill Bruce, what will your next excuse for inaction be? The Charter one is a fail.

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Lost!!! Please help to try and find Nenshi’s knackers as they appear to have fallen off somewhere.

Well, I guess that Mayor Nenshi and City Hall have decided that yesterday’s action of issuing warning tickets with no fines on them nor names of the people they issued them to was a step too far. Today City Hall cowered in terror yet again in the face of a couple dozen squatters in Olympic Plaza and didn’t even go so far as to issue a single bylaw ticket. The cowardice and inaction of Calgary’s city hall has been almost as embarrassing as the garbage dump that we used to call Olympic Plaza has become.

I have already reported on the damage being done to the park through illegal squatting ($40,000 and counting). I have reported on how the squatters are literally crapping on the ground there (I apologize for the graphic photos but I like to provide proof). I reported on how the occupiers were defacing the Canadian flag in lead up to Remembrance Day.

Now I would like to point out the damage that is being done in the sense that local residents are being disturbed and put out by these belligerent squatters. Many people live right in the area and they are getting tired of looking at a garbage dump in the park. They are tired of being harassed by “occupiers” and they tired of the noise and distraction.

Enough from me on that, the video below depicts a man who was walking home for lunch, tool belt and all (99%er) who felt he finally had to say something. The poor man did find that reasoning with occupy Calgary representatives is an exercise in futility.

 

Many may have heard that a pair of squatters got badly burned last night when one of them had a lit candle in his tent. There is a reason that we do not allow squatting in city parks. The parks are not designed for camping and desperate squatters are going to idiotic means such as open flames as they fight dropping temperatures. It was extremely lucky that the fire did not spread through the entire shantytown potentially killing multiple people. The tents are packed closely together on dry wooden pallets and are insulated with cardboard. If left to remain like this, we are almost certain to see a disaster soon.

If not bylaws, how about fire code enforcement for public safety?

Now below we have a squatter hounding a passerby while claiming that the city of Calgary is criminally responsible for last night’s fire because they did not provide free electricity to the illegal squatters.

I say yes and no.

We taxpayers are not obligated to provide free electricity to loafing squatters and are not responsible for the squatters going without.

The Mayor Nenshi and the city are indeed responsible for this in that this unsafe mess should have been cleared from our park months ago. I do hope that Mayor Nenshi locates his reproductive organs before we see either a larger and more disastrous fire, frostbite cases or even overdose deaths like Vancouver occupiers had.

The next little video below is of a couple squatters who hid behind a tree like little cowards and shouted obscenities and threats at me. Their cowardice is second only to that of Nenshi’s in this. These squatters are sad specimens and no message exists aside from entitlement and filthy unsafe living.

Finally we see what Nenshi and the city are truly cowering behind their desks about. A squatter holds a sign and clearly implies that violence will occur if the squatters do not get their petty demands met. This is the depth of squatter dialog and with the handful of extremists (like the one pictured below) remaining in Olympic Plaza a violent and possibly tragic outcome is pretty much assured.

 

So will the city wait until there are further inguries before enforcing the law? Will they wait for open violence? Will they wait until there is a death?

I tell you what, I fear the consequences of inaction much more than what we may see if the city enforces the law.

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Another day in the park.

Well, as we heard yesterday warnings were posted at Olympic Plaza telling our squatters that they had 24 hours to remove tents and unused materials as per city bylaws. My nature dictated that I had to go down there in person to witness and document the event today. While the tents still remain (hopefully not for long), the day was indeed eventful as bylaw officers and police came to the park to provide written warnings to our illegal squatters.

The nasty corporate media (yes tongue in cheek) was there in abundance so there is little reason for me to report on the minutiae of the happenings. Sun News did give me a chance to express some of my thoughts as did other outlets.

What I want to report on is the personal and individual nature of the attitude of the “occupiers” when it comes to myself. Some occupiers actually told me to get the hell out of “their” park. It was an exceedingly funny tweet to see upon arriving home. You see, these “occupiers” shun being covered by any form of media whether formal or alternative as their hypocrisy tends to be exposed pretty quickly. Were I that confused and vapid in my nature, I doubtless would avoid the public spotlight too.

Now, upon arriving at Olympic Plaza I was beset upon by a variety of “occupiers” and exchanges occurred. Again, due to there being literally dozens of cameras and microphones in the area pretty much everything was documented by formal and informal media alike. Tiring of the inane ramblings of our occupiers, I did try to wander the park to get more footage and to see what was happening as warning tickets were being handed out by bylaw and police officers.

As I wandered I was continually tailed and harassed by Occupy Calgary representative James Bullock. For those with better things to remember, James Bullock is the young martyr who was recently ticketed for throwing down a lit cigarette butt in the park. With all the dry and dead grass in the area, people can understand why this offence is taken pretty seriously. Occupy Calgary has already cost taxpayers more than $40,000 through combined damages and enhanced monitoring of the park. I could not imagine what may have happened if a grass fire were to rage through a pile of closely packed nylon tents. James pouted later that he should not have to pay as he could not afford it.

Now as I said, young James continually followed and hounded me throughout the park. His agitation as I ignored him became evident to the point where police officers began following us as it was evident that James may indeed become violent. James kept claiming that he wanted to speak yet got belligerent whenever his speaking may be recorded.

Now to you occupy folks I am going to post a video below. You will now understand why I constantly carry a video camera with me as your representatives have a terrible time sticking to the truth.

Below in his own words is James Bullock, Occupy Calgary representative as I give him time to air his thoughts: I apologize for the poor camera angle. I had to keep my face unobstructed as it is evident that James may have been ready to strike me.

Now how exactly am I supposed to explore dialog and reason with a guy like that?
 

Note that while occupiers claim that they want dialog that they cover their faces and become belligerent as soon as somebody tries to engage in such.

Now on the official occupy Calgary blog I see statements claiming such pap as my having referred to James as a “retard” among other things.

For some reasons that are personal and that I will not expand on, I can say with 100% confidence that I have never called anybody a “retard”. I say so with such confidence simply because I know I never use that term.  The rest of their blather is simple fabrication as well of course.

Were I of a vexatious nature I guess I could howl that I was slandered. To be honest, I am only concerned when people with even a shred of credibility say bad things of me and Occupy Calgary simply has no credibility.

Occupy Calgary supporter Marcus Arseneault appears to have done an absolute terrible and fraudulent forgery of his boss’s email as he unsuccessfully tried to create a scandal claiming he was fired for involvement in occupy Calgary.

I reported on flags being purposely hung upside down by occupy Calgary supporters recently.

Occupy Calgary supporters claimed the flags had simply been blown down by mistake. That lie was blown out of the water when pictures of the defaced flags that were weeks old were presented (Occupy Calgary again has hung the flags upside down again by the way).

What we see here is a pattern of ad hominem attacks against people who report on Occupy Calgary with no substance and that are easily disproved. Can these people and their unfounded and libelous accusations about me be taken seriously this time? Absolutely not.

In my blog postings I provide pictures, video and real quotes from people to add to the integrity of what I write. This is why I attend events in person as well. I like to see and report my views on what I see directly.

As I said before, there were dozens of cameras and microphones around me all day. Astoundingly not a single on recorded my alleged statements to Mr. Bullock.

I will say this now. I was certainly not kind to Mr Bullock when he abrasively kept trying to get in my face. I do say that he is lazy with a deep sense of entitlement and victimhood and he blames the entire world for his own shortcomings. I may have said that directly to him today and I do not regret having said so. I never said the trash that our desperate occupiers are trying to claim however.

Bullock may indeed have some extra challenges in life. If that is the case I hope that he seeks help rather than sitting in a park smoking and whining about his tough lot in life as it clearly is not serving him well. Taxpayers spend millions (rightly) on programs to help the disadvantaged. Squatting in a park is not the way to seek help.

Now tomorrow I will be heading down to the garbage dump in Olympic Plaza that we call “occupy Calgary” and I will directly document the action/inaction that may happen. At least we can be assured that I will remain within the bounds of the truth as opposed to “occupy Calgary” and their supporters.

I do look forward to seeing them dragged from their tents kicking and screaming so that their “movement” can end in as infantile a manner as it began.

I may post some more video and thoughts of today later this evening but for now I am going to kick back with a glass of the fine single-malt that I do love and earned the money to buy. 🙂

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