Back With A Vengeance
By Robert Tuomi
(WINDSOR, ON) – At approximately 10 pm Monday July 23, 2012, jaws could be heard dropping all over the city. Others with jaws where they should be simply shook their heads and exclaimed, almost in unison, “it had to happen.“
To them it was no surprise, it was simply inevitable. All part of the work of the inwards on Windsor city council to cleanse, in the same way trees cleanse the polluted air in the city, the reputation of disgraced councilor Al Maghnieh, the same councilor who months earlier admitted he wanted to be a big deal and used a library issued credit card for alleged personal gain.
Still, to many, and phones lines across the city were heated in all the calls going around among city hall watchers, the way it happened was nothing if not a shocker. Integrity-light Maghnieh was ready and willing, and who can blame the bold shameless councilor, to add his two cents, possibly due to inflation now worthless, to the discussion concerning a motion inward and former broadcaster Percy Hatfield had put forward.
Hatfield wanted his fellow inwards to accept a recommendation from a standing committee that those apparently pesky so-called e-bikes – scooter type vehicles with electric motors – be allowed on city trails and that the inwards find money to widen the trails if they are too narrow to collectively handle pedestrians and e-bikers.
Maghnieh, glad to participate, and who can blame him given he really should be the subject of a police investigation, seemed glad to join in the discussion and even lectured, as if he was some kind of integrity arbiter, that Hatfield was “doing the right thing” as if he could tell the right thing from the wrong thing.
While saying this he actually looked at the camera and smirked, a taunt to the honourable and honest citizens watching which seemed to suggest he knew precisely the irony of what he was saying.
Then came the bombshell that he threw out for his peers in the windowless chamber. He said he hoped that his “colleagues will support as well” Hatfield’s motion.
Not one of the inwards stood up on a point of order and demanded to let the city know that Maghnieh was no colleague. By not doing so, all are saying, en masse, that Maghnieh is their colleague and you can take it or leave it.
It was very reminiscent of the day that fallen Maghnieh gave his infamous I am not leaving speech and was welcomed back with open arms by Biagio Marra, the only inward to lavish him with a conciliatory greeting.
Marra claimed that the gang of eleven had work to do and it required the reckless councilor.
Some in the city were saddened to see how quickly Maghnieh has been rehabilitated knowing full well if a member of the regular folk had done his deeds they’d be tossed into a penitentiary and the key would be thrown away. Not Maghnieh, he is allowed to continue as if nothing happened.
Even the auditors who studied Maghnieh’s modus operandi reported that although he did pay back the money on his credit card did not always do it in a timely fashion. This means that he was in effect taking money from the library and thus enjoying an alleged material gain.
If he had used his own library card he would have had to pay interest on the unpaid balance. His methodology allowed him to avoid this and now, in a matter of a few months, he is an equal with his “colleagues.”
Sadly some think this says much more about his “colleagues” than it does about Maghnieh.
For more of the Rest of the News listen to CJAM 99.1 Monday evenings at 8:30.
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