Quick update on Hogan’s Anti Saint John rant

I just heard on ‘Shift’ the afternoon program on CBC that the Moncton Times & Trashscript ‘We Say’ was read out on that program for all Saint Johners to hear.

Wonderful. Saint Johners were calling in almost in tears they were so upset.

Now, courtesy of CBC, the good people of Saint John get to have a taste of Al Hogan. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t blame CBC – I’d do the same thing – it’s newsworthy.

But I know a few Saint Johners read this blog and let me say that Al Hogan doesn’t speak for Monctonians. He speaks for himself.

I wonder what it would take to get a guy like that ousted. It’s an absolute wonder that the Irvings would allow him to make those comments and stir up resentment between two cities that should be working together to take on the challenges facing our province. I can only think they agree with Al Hogan and that’s bizarre as they have done so much good for both cities. Otherwise, they would send him packing and replace him with an editor that was a better representation of Greater Moncton.

You see, in my opinion, after living in Moncton for over eight years now, on the whole, Monctonians are a decent lot. Their unassuming, hard working, open to strangers, fairly cultured, reflective and an overall good bunch (there are some bad apples, of course). The editor of the local English language paper, au contraire, is the opposite of that (is that a bilingual oxymoron? I digress). He spews forth buffoonery (note his We Say today linking Andy Scott’s People Strategy with the Petitcodiac River, sheesh). He purposely doesn’t report on highly relevant stories because they don’t fit his agenda. He is critical of everyone except a few of his little friends and his syrupy stories about the economy and the provincial government serve no meaningful purpose other than to lull people into sleep (and then slap them awake once in a while with a We Say like his rant against Saint John).

So, maybe we should do a little on-line petition – print it out and stack it in front of ‘Mr. Irving’s’ door.

Maybe not. This is not really a grass roots blog.

Tomorrow back to our regular programming.

But tonight, I vent a bit.

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0 Responses to Quick update on Hogan’s Anti Saint John rant

  1. scott says:

    Thou shall not balkanize an economically weak and already balkanized area. These petty city ramblings/warfare do nothing but damage the social fabric and unity of our great province.

    That is all. You may go back to your regular programming.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Hey there, I seem to recall a couple of fairly borderline comments long ago against St. John, and I haven’t heard too many Monctoners saying that Molson should set up in St. John to help ‘share the wealth’.

  3. David Campbell says:

    As I recall, Molson didn’t want to set up beside one of its biggest competitors. That’s fair. The CIBC call centre is in Fredericton while the RBC one is in Moncton (and I think there is a TD one in SJ?). It’s not about ‘sharing the wealth’. It’s about growing the wealth and places like SJ and Moncton ensuring they do what they can to capitalize. That’s the problem. There is not enough ‘wealth’ around (in a generic sense). If we work together to grow the pie then there will be more for everyone to eat.

    As far as ‘borderline’ comments against Saint John, I have always called it like I see it. I hammered Moncton for some of its downtown development stuff and I have chastised SJ for other things (can’t remember right off – I have written close to 400 blogs). And I have even been know to take a swipe or two at the pristine and unflappable Fredericton.

    My feelings about Saint John, however; are well known. I think it’s a great city and should reclaim its place as a major economic engine in Atlantic Canada – and that, my friend, will happen or not regardless of the success/failure of Moncton.

  4. Anonymous says:

    David, further to that editorial, the Telegraph-Journal also reprinted it yesterday to show Saint John readers how the T-T viewed the by-election.

  5. Anonymous says:

    That’s what Molson SAID, of course they aren’t going to say ‘we’re want to set up in Lords own riding’. Moosehead is hardly one of its biggest competitors, everybody knows the ballgame takes place FAR from New Brunswick shores.

    And St. John is HUGE geographically, it isn’t like they are selling beer out of their warehouse and so the other brewery is competition-these are bottling plants and distribution centres, nothing more.

    So I HIGHLY doubt that is true about not wanting to set up near Moosehead, that Moncton is Lord’s riding is hardly coincidental. Why can’t one city be the ‘brewing’ capital of the province and attempt to build on that? I would be VERY surprised with all the money Molson was given that they couldn’t be told the deal was for St. John. I doubt very much that they said “we’ll take your millions but only if it’s for Moncton, we really want to be close to Crystal Palace”.

    The fact is, when NEW corporations are being bought for the province, they should go according to need. Moncton had that need in the late eighties/early nineties, so nobody begrudged it. Now northern New Brunswick and Saint John need it, so THAT should be the priority. In fact Edmunstun is pretty much as close to the major southern shipping route as Moncton.

  6. David Campbell says:

    Couple of points. I partially agree with you but with a few caveats. First, it’s my understanding that Molson specifically didn’t want to go to Saint John. Now, I agree it seems that the Premier’s riding is a little coincidental but…

    Cripes, let’s all agree that there is always some political influence. I was in a room when Air Canada came to New Brunswick and they were told point blank that the Premier wanted them to set up in Saint John. AC protested and said that they needed 100% bilingual workers so shouldn’t they be in Moncton? They were told bilingual people would move to Saint John. And they were right. So, the Premier wanting to shore up his riding with Molson? That’s par for the course, I guess.

    Monctonians, myself included, can be somewhat gullible. The bridge between Moncton and Riverview has taken longer to build that the Confederation Bridge to PEI and much longer than the entire Fredericton to Moncton highway (including three bridges). Yet, we are thrilled with the Premier for his loving tender care of Moncton instead of complaining that the bridge has been used as a political lever for at least two elections. The point is that the Premier hasn’t given as much to Moncton as the media thinks. Most of the new jobs have been expansions of existing call centres and new retail/construction jobs. How much say did he have in those? And the new money for the hospitals? There’s been a 15% increase in the local population – of course they needed to put in a little more money but as a percentage of the population growth – they are underinvesting in Moncton’s healthcare.

    Yet merrily Monctonians roll along – almost a clean sweep for the Conservatives last time and undoubtedly next time as well.

    If Monctonians stopped to look around they would ask where the next wave of economic growth is coming from. It was call centres and manufacturing in the 90s which stimulated a retail and services mini boom. That is now waning and where is the next wave of primary economic development (which stimulates retail and services, yadda, yadda, yadda)?

    We need a new round of business investment in Moncton too – just like Saint John. It just seems to me that SJ may be out front of a curve and not in the backend.

    But I could be wrong. I crave any insight into this.

  7. Anonymous says:

    I was only referring to Molson. It’s a far different kind of economic development that is being prastised when you are deciding where to stick a foreign business than, say, investing in local research. Moncton benefits in all kinds of ways, perhaps ‘per capita’ it doesn’t come out to as much but just take a look around Moncton. Saint John Harbour literally looks like a third world country, Moncton has no places I know that look like that, Fredericton certainly doesn’t. The only other places like that are northern new brunswick which has really NEVER been given much in the way of incentives. It was only recently that Edmunstun got some university level courses offered. And it’s no coincidence that when ‘spreading the wealth’ around is discussed, it is usually restricted to Moncton, Fredericton, and St. John.

    Government departments are all centred in the south, St. John at least benefits from Irving having their headquarters there. In the ‘new economy’ research and technology is everything, SOME medical research is done in Moncton, but really little goes on for bio-technology. But at least universities have the OPPORTUNITY to get federal money. St. John is virtually the only city in Canada to not have its own legitimate university. Its getting more and more of UNB, but thats been late in coming.

    But the north is literally what keeps the province in the third world. I’m from there and know that many people would love canada to only have two levels of government-federal and local. That way the north could actually control their resources. The north is nothing but a place to get cheap labour and cheap resources, there are NO universities, and so OBVIOUSLY per capita they will appear to get more, that’s basic economics and math-they have fewer people, and thanks to Fredericton and Ottawa, much greater need.

    So when you ‘buy’ a Molson, you at least put it where they need it MOST, which would be Miramichi (which has literally been gutted), Edmunston, Bathurst or Campbellton. And like said above, any labour that can’t be supplied locally, will be supplied by people moving there (plenty of whom are already FROM there).

    Finally, it IS true Molson doesn’t want the competition-but not about beer, but about working conditions. THere’s a reason that they closed the plant in Barrie and moved it here, and it sure wasn’t so that they can be even nicer to their work force and hire more people. Yet Moosehead is well known as one of the best places to work, their turnover is basically nil because people love their jobs so much. This way Molson has no competition in the industry in town so will get all kinds of shiny awards from the municipality for how good they are.