We Should Know Naheed Nenshi

Since February 2008, local artist and community-builder Mark Hopkins has hosted “We Should Know Each Other” parties in his living room.

“We Should Know Naheed Nenshi” was an event Mark organized (Sept 15th) to help undecided voters to hang out, talk, and hear Nenshi’s elevator pitch.

The event was open to everyone, had delicious food, sparked some fascinating conversations… the only thing missing was photons. You know, photons, like from the sun, from fire… from light bulbs. So the footage is kinda grainy.

I hope this coverage of Nenshi’s Q & A session illustrates why I think he’s such an exciting candidate for mayor. Nenshi’s policy proposals are very detailed, and it is clear he has a deep understanding of how to implement bureaucratic reform, and fix Calgary’s budgeting process.

Nenshi’s thoughts condensed down
in to so few words as to be meaningless
02:12 02:12 Elevator pitch. Helps clients in private, public & government sectors increase their efficiency. At MRU teaches how to run non-profits effectively. Stands for sustainability [financial, social, environmental]. Will make Calgary a better place to start a business. Will fix city council.
13:52 13:52 Calgary Transit. Preferred choice, not last choice. Start experimenting with additional buses, increase capacity quickly. Express bus route that never goes downtown (already serviced by C-Train). Transit advisory committee made up of customers.
18:00 18:00 Public libraries. Incredibly important, particularly in areas with large English-as-a-second-language population. Does not believe director of library has proposed best budget cut options (stay closed on Sunday, halt opening of new N.E. branch). Does not know answer, but knows what questions to ask. Gives example, what are lowest used period for each branch? Can at least one library remain open in each city quadrant at all times? 2011 will be rough, 2012 should see restored services.
21:07 21:07 Broad change. Obama proposed new policies. Calgary is stuck in 1960s policy making. Lots of historical precedence for improving governance.
23:13 23:13 Social investment. Public transit is best investment.
23:48 23:48 Urban sprawl. Calgary developers more willing to engage in discussion than you think. Will not use developers as political football. If developers building livable communities fail, Nenshi will look bad. Need developers at table, but they can’t dictate terms.
26:52 26:52 Calgary film making. City can support new sound stage, or offer up civic resources. Not a subsidy war approach.
29:06 29:06 Winning. Campaign already projected third place on Labour Day. Alderman McIver’s support more solid than hoped. Barb Higgins is dropping like a stone. If Calgarians understand this is still a 3 person race, we will win. Our message resonates once people hear it, hardly anyone has heard it yet.
34:57 34:57 Gay community. Talking to all communities, what benefits Calgary benefits all communities. Discrimination (sexual, religion) is not the Calgary we are building. Acts of vandalism do not represent the Calgary McIver or Higgins want either.
38:24 38:24 Homeless. 10 year plan (Calgary is already following) is excellent. Lack of housing more of a cause than symptom of drug abuse. Homeless used to climb regardless of economy, now started to level off. Wants to start addressing poverty in similar manner.
40:58 40:58 Community green house. Streamlining, cutting red tape applies to projects of social value too, not just new businesses.
42:01 42:01 Arts & culture. Cites ArtsVote Q & A. Calgary needs flagship spaces for established artists, and facilities (in low rent neighborhoods) for emerging artists. Secondary suites & zoning changes will lead to lower cost housing & studio space. Likes proposal for International Avenue Arts Centre.
45:43 45:43 Evangelical interview. Don’t like gay pride parades? Don’t attend them. Everyone needs to be able to work together as a community.
46:47 46:47 Sale of ENMAX. Depends on price, depends on debt load. As public utility, ENMAX offers unique social value, is patient capital.
47:54 47:54 Local food. Down with community gardening. People should be able to try stuff (chickens!) in pilot projects.
49:23 49:23 City Council. Calgary City Council full of good people. New alderman will shake things up, gives opportunity to stop dysfunctional behavior. Governance reform, new procedures will help shift adversarial nature. Give ward alderman city-wide responsibilities.

This video is released under Creative Commons share-alike 3.0 license.

UPDATE: It appears Bob Hawkesworth has cited this video as Nenshi “being on the record” saying he’d sell ENMAX.

I believe anyone but Bob Hawkesworth watching this video would come to a very different conclusion.

I was already under the impression Hawkesworth was the only candidate factually wrong on the issue of the airport tunnel. Is this a Calgarian example of a political candidate inhabiting their own reality, as seen far too often in the USA?

Just the fact Hawkesworth isn’t willing to share where he saw Nenshi “on the record” talking about ENMAX, makes me think Hawkesworth knows he’s not on solid ground with his claim.

What pisses me off here, Bob, is that not only are you quoting Nenshi in my video out of context. You are behaving in a way that makes our mayoral candidates less likely to speak frankly about these issues. If every candidate knows their words will be taken out of context by their opponents, then they’ll revert to vague platitudes and intelligent discussion will cease.

Bob, I don’t see any video of you online sharing your insights on the topic of ENMAX. You know how hard it is to use an iPhone to video yourself talking in depth about any topic, and uploading that to YouTube? It is not hard at all.

UPDATE 2: Bob Hawkesworth first shoddily re-edited the We-Should-Know-Nenshi video (posting only his misleading edit), then finally (after a DMCA takedown citing the rules of the Creative Commons license) Bob linked to the original video.

Bob Hawkesworth is still being misleading on this, and I have no idea what his intention is at this point, except having the Nenshi campaign join his own in the “out of the mayoral race” category.

I’ve downloaded copies of the videos Bob’s posted, and I’ll have more to say on this once I’m done working on more important election video coverage (like indexing the content of mayoral forums).

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