We need the no growth option

It’s a local election year. This is good; Nelson needs a shake-up. To me, consequential politics boil down to politics of development and growth in our lovely hometown. Who among the people who want to govern us have shown they have the wit, will, work ethic and wisdom for the challenges of 2011 to 2014?

It’s a local election year. This is good; Nelson needs a shake-up. To me, consequential politics boil down to politics of development and growth in our lovely hometown. Who among the people who want to govern us have shown they have the wit, will, work ethic and wisdom for the challenges of 2011 to 2014?

I have lived here 24 years. I have stayed informed. I have run for office. I have reported on politics. My perspectives aren’t free of prejudice, I suppose — but I call that my principles and values, not ideology.

I still fume when I think of the Kutenai Landing rip-off. Thank luck for the 2008 market failures, so Kutenai Landing never got underway.

Politicians betrayed us when they ignored opposition. Public meetings revealed vocal majorities against the plan; our wise council said they knew “a minority” was anti-Kutenai Landing.

The Red Sands and Sorenson development is another fine mess. Not one of the current councillors have shown a thorough grasp of development law, permit process, Crown land data, nor an ability to resist City Hall “experts” and business propaganda that wants to ease developers’ growth schemes. It’s sad.

Is it time for a Nelson no-growth plan and party? Has anyone the spine to say their platform is to stop any developer whose plan is on the same old growth pattern we have seen since World War II? That’s sure political suicide, I’ve often heard. But when humanity is committing ecocide, maybe this time is just right for saying no to re-runs.

Listen to economists, who’ve only one solution to world economic problems, and you’ll laugh, cry and/or rage. Recession? No jobs? Credit crisis? “Grow. Grow. Grow”… the bumper sticker on cancer’s juggernaut.

I’ll vote anyway, not expecting miracles. I don’t count humans’ collective sanity miraculous. Am I mad?

Charles Jeanes, Nelson

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