Monday, August 13, 2007


A Little Help For My Friends

Can anyone name more than five or six members of the Edmonton Investors Group off the top of their head? If you can, I think you are in the minority. Yet according to Kerry Diotte of the Edmonton Sun, the failing of Darryl Katz is that he didn't let us all become his best friend, like the current regime has.

"Despite a boom that sees this town as one of the most prosperous places on the planet, the operative word is, this is still a town.

Even though we might have one million souls residing here enjoying a tremendous boom, we still like to get to know one another."

Exactly. I spend all my days walking around this city giving out free hugs and telling my brothers and sisters, "peace be with you." The same goes for most Edmontonians. Katz, being the complete outsider that he is (he's only lived in Edmonton for, like, ever), just doesn't get that.

I really don't know what else to say about this story angle. It seems to be a recurring one at the Sun, and it's completely bogus. The "P-word" was thrown out in this story, in the most ridiculous manner. Diotte criticizes Katz for being like Peter Pocklington, although he doesn't supply a single compelling argument to support that claim. In fact, the one point he makes--that Pocklington was a big-mouth whereas Katz is silent to a fault--only highlights a difference in personality and approach. In the end, the whole thrust of this article is "don't trust rich guy for the sole reason that he is rich." That's a standard argument from 19-year old faux hippies and champagne socialists, but not one I'd expect to hear from a reasonably rational human being, let alone a writer at the Edmonton Sun.

As an added bonus, note the shift in language about the EIG in this Diotte quote.

"This week, though, like a rich suitor after a trophy wife, he was rejected by the community board of directors - people who ponied up big dollars to save the team when there was every reason to believe they'd be headed for a permanent road trip out of Edmonton."

A "community board of directors" is what the EIG are now. Annointed caretakers of a most sacred trust. Forget the idea that they might have any self-interest, or that it's a group of 30 people most of us have never even heard of. In fact, buy in to their altruism lock, stock and barrel. And when they come asking for your tax dollars to increase the value of their investment (see new hockey arena), fork it over, no questions asked. They are your best buddies, after all, and you always give aid to a friend.

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Great stuff Andy.

More critically, have we ever been told who the 30 investors are? Or are they the secret community committee?

My thoughts exactly....all of a sudden Katz is Pocklington-07. No wonder I hate reading the papers....filled with mediocre talents.

I'd love to see and hear Cal Nichols reaction (maybe Terry Jones could do the narration) if the City of Edmonton said: 'sure Cal we'll kick in for the new Arena, and all we want in return is a nice sizeable chunk of the team, 'cause now we're partners'.

Of course, one is the Edmonton Journal, owned by CanWest out of Winnipeg, and another one is Seth (?) McFarlane of Spawn fame. Neither of which are local.

I'm sure there are other "non - local" local ones among the 30.

I'm sure the oilerogosphere can list them...

The point is that there are a bunch of people in the EIG who want to avoid the limelight, and the Sun doesn't go out of their way to attack them for it. It's a completely bogus argument. If his only sin is that he doesn't want to help Terry Jones write copy, then he can't become owner soon enough.

And most of those "low-profile" EIG members don't have the financial beans to wash Katz's car. Despite what the SUN would have you believe, that kind of wealth almost forces you to become reclusive. Trust me, there's alot of big money around town you'd never know about. Sandy Mactaggart - Maclab (sp?) is one example.

What I don't get is this whole painting Katz as Pocklington II. Diotte and just about every other journalist in this town know about Katz. They know he's a genuine good guy, U of A grad who grew up in Rio Terrace. He's about as far away from P. Puck as can possibly be.

At least Katz isn't feeding us with condescending lines from the Darrin Stevens era. Saying "Its really about Edmonton" while patting us on the head and acting like our mom. Fuck that's insulting!

They're really laying in on thick up there, aren't they? Soon they'll be publishing doctored pictures of Katz twirling a waxed villain-mustache.

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