Smoke and mirrors

Section: 
Editorial

The theatrical season appears to have opened early in Kincardine.

 

A one act play was staged at the beginning of the council meeting Wednesday.

 

In many ways, it was a smoke and mirrors production featuring Ron Coristine. At the start he was a councillor, at the end he was an ex.

 

Coristine’s soliloquy began with a listing of his accomplishments and his devotion to bringing jobs to the community. The turning point came with a spirited declaration; he said there would be no conflict of interest if he stayed on as a councillor while holding his new job of executive director of PREDC.

 

In the dramatic climax, Coristine said that he was resigning from council to devote himself “fully to the cause of economic development and the betterment of this community for the future of our children and grandchildren.”

 

As a drama critic, I’d say the play lacked substance.

 

For starters, it had none of the nuances of Shakepeare’s Hamlet. In the play, Hamlet says, “The play is the thing, Wherein I’ll catch the conscience of the king.”

 

And there was no interaction with his audience. It would have been so much more entertaining if council members could have questioned Coristine. There could have been a dramatic back and forth between the hero of this play and those he has left behind to take the heat. Passion could have come to the fore. But no, we were robbed of such an exchange.

 

The soliloquy really only addressed a possible future conflict of interest (if he’d stayed on council), not those of the recent past. For example, Coristine applied for the head honcho job at PREDC. Yet, council was kept in the dark as Coristine voted for the PREDC budget and the downtown lease for office space for tourism, PREDC, the BIA and the Chamber of Commerce.

 

It was, in my estimation, theatre of the absurd.

 

Hopefully it doesn’t become a regular feature to kick off council meetings.

 

**

 

Actually council has been theatre of the absurd of late.

 

Why did council approve an unread, incomplete lease with the Chamber of Commerce three weeks ago? One of the schedules to said lease still hadn’t been received by the municipality as of Friday.

 

So is the lease valid?

 

**

 

There is still much to be said about what’s happening on council. But I’ll leave that for another week.

 

In the meantime, I suggest you read Norm Annetts’ letter to the editor in this week's print edition. He says a lot in a few words.