Jo Blog

Smart, sometimes funny, musings and other stuff

Afraid of our own shadow

November 14, 2018  

At what point in recent history did Calgarians become afraid of our own shadow? After yesterday’s plebiscite, the chance for our city to host the 2026 Olympics in Calgary is quashed.


Many of the “No” reasons I have heard came down to misinformation: from huge tax increases to curling being held in Edmonton to this money can be spent elsewhere in our city.


News flash: We’ve just kissed $4 billion goodbye. It was earmarked specifically for Calgary’s infrastructure via our Olympic bid and that, my friends, has just evaporated. It’s not available to spend as we please. In fact, it’s not available at all anymore.


For reasons stated in my last blog post, I am so disappointed that the naysayers prevailed. We’ve missed the boat. The big boat. Not a kayak or row boat, we’ve waved the Queen Mary right on by when we could have used a lift off the island.


Calgary’s bid was responsible and smart. We would be refurbishing much-used infrastructure. Then the “No” side said the committee wasn’t thinking big enough, dubbing it the “budget games.” Same with security costs. Last I checked, agencies like the RCMP had more experience and gravitas in developing security plans and budgets than first-time city councillor Jeremy Farkas (who seems to be a “leader” against everything, for nothing). Where’s the win here?


“The wrong project at the wrong time,” was another phrase repeatedly spun. The right project at the right time according to this group? Dead air (a moot point at any rate considering funding was not an open bucket as noted above).


The Canadian Olympic Committee stated after last night’s vote was counted, “… we are disappointed with the outcome. The opportunity to welcome the world to Canada, where people can experience the uniting power of the Games and within our nation’s culture of peace and inclusion, would have offered countless benefits to all. This would have been a unique opportunity for Canadians to be leaders in fulfilling the promise of a renewed vision for the Games.”  I couldn’t agree more.


Calgary has been a city created by by community builders with vision who seized opportunity as they saw it. We need more of that today instead of cowering from our own shadow.