Mr. Floatie, a walking, talking piece of human feces, has been disqualified as a candidate for Mayor of Victoria.
The grounds for disqualification were obvious. Only human beings are allowed to be on election ballots.
However, Mr. Floatie has succeeded in his objective, which is to draw attention to the fact that Victoria still pumps untreated sewage into the Strait of Juan de Fuca.
James Skwarok, the local activist who took on the role of Mr. Floatie, didn't take exception to the ruling. "Of course I'm not a real person. I'm a big piece of poop."
Skwarok's campaign should be of interest to voters in the Federal riding of New Westminster–Coquitlam. One of the candidates for the Liberal nomination there is Joyce Murray, former Minister of Water, Land, and Air Protection.
In 1992, then-Premier Mike Harcourt and Washington Governor Booth Gardner signed the Environmental Cooperation Agreement, which committed the state and the province to work together on transboundary environmental problems, including Victoria's sewage. In 2003, Murray, in effect, broke this agreement by approving a Liquid Waste Management Plan put forward by the Capital Regional District. This plan postpones any secondary sewage treatment for at least ten years.
Murray lost her MLA job primarily because of her failure to keep Saint Mary's Hospital open. Murray also gave us parking fees in provincial parks, closures of campgrounds in provincial parks, and inaction on salmon farms in the Broughton Archipelago. Mr. Floatie serves as an effective reminder that as Minister of Water, Land, and Air Protection, Murray failed to protect the water in the Strait of Juan de Fuca. If the Federal Liberals nominate her in New Westminster–Coquitlam, it will be a blatant case of rewarding failure.
Update on Nov. 18: Mr. Floatie has teamed up with two Green Party candidates in Victoria's municipal election, Philippe Lucas and Sonya Chandler, to fight for sewage treatment in Victoria.
Strait Talk, July 2003, newsletter of the Georgia Strait Alliance (PDF); see “Sewage Sorrows”, p. 13