Thursday, December 23, 2004


Underbelly News
Downtown Eastside


Hi All!

On Monday December 20, 2004, I was very fortunate to have shared some wonderful seasonal cheer with friends who could make it to my Open House. When I think of what the festive season should be about, I am ever mindful of the turbulent times in society that many of us are witnessing. It is my hope--as I'm sure yours--for a better, safer, productive, healthy and successful 2005.

Starting with a bang, I will be hosting a New Years Eve Gala for my community, friends, neighbors and supporters. I plan on announcing to everyone in my life what my hopes, dreams and desires are for 2005.

Being a political person I will continue writing my blog and hopefully bringing you news.

First up in the New Year will be the May 2005 provincial election. At this time, voters will be given a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to change our voting system. I will be supporting the YES to SINGLE TRANSFERABLE VOTE (STV) system in the May 2005 referendum. My main reason for this is I feel its imperative that democracy be returned to the people. Too often, big money or organized labour have called the shots in our political parties. This has resulted in a distortion of our political system. As a result, often, citizens of this province have been shortchanged and this must change.

I strongly believe in the power of the vote. I'll be joining forces with other STV supporters and actively promoting this change to our current first-past-the-post (FPTP) voting system. I'll expand in the New Year on my other reasons.

Locally, I have been apalled with many of our elected representatives. My sincere hope is that we see change in 2005. Can someone tell me what happened to Mayor Larry Campbell? I remember in 2002, this man rode a wave of Campbell power into the highest office in municipal politics. Many of us had great hopes that his down to earth style and seemingly concern for the downtrodden and ordinary citizens of this city would bring beneficial change. Sadly, the Mayor over a two year period never did find his political legs, consequently, time and time again, many of us bore witness to his anger, outbursts and temper tantrums. I must say though that many civic politicians acted out in the best interests of the people. They were civil even at times when the Mayor was demeaning and or taunting.

Making the non partisan A list for local community service are Councilors Tim Louis, Fred Bass, Anne Roberts, Peter Ladner, Sam Sullivan, David Cadman and Ellen Woodsworth. Kudos to you! To the others you have been either a major disappointment or just plain bad. Because, I am personally fond of Councilor Tim Stevenson, it is with regret that I had to place you in the disappointing category. I sincerely hope you can redeem yourself as you embark on a spring election. As yet, none of my friends or myself know what it is that you want to do for West End residents. C'mon Councilor Tim sharpen up. Get back to the days when you fought to be the first openly out ordained minister of the United Church. Many of us want that old activist Tim back!

To anyone seeking public office, please remember to stick to your values and always walk the walk after being elected. Never waver!

So folks, my plans for the new year is to keep doing what I like to do and feel what I do best. Being an activist, entertainer and bridge builder is ingrained deeply with-in my blood, character and values system.

Remember, I may be at times a thorn in your side, I may challenge you or your ideas or I may simply bring you a laugh or even some tidbit of gossip. Through it all please keep close to your heart and prayers: my community, my neighbors and my neighborhood.

Together let us make a bond-- for peace and goodwill!

See you in 2005!

Jamie Lee Hamilton