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I’m a “pompous prick”. So be it

Mon, 06/06/2016 - 14:30 -- Chris Cooke

I’m always fascinated by the twits who Twitter and the whackos who Facebook.

Case in point.

Forty-eight twits and whackos commented on my views regarding the closure of Sarnia Collegiate Institute and Technical School. They misinterpreted my views and then the herd mentality ensued. In particular, I suggested “pregnant women and potentially pregnant women will throw themselves on the ground in despair” over the closure of the 96-year-old institution. The reason? Future offspring will have to be bused to other schools including St. Clair Secondary.

My comment had nothing to do with the number of teenage pregnancies at SCITS. I’m reasonably confident it isn’t any higher at SCITS than other City high schools or for that matter any other high school in the Province. And yet, there they are yelling and screaming at me on line. Some  jumped into the fray describing me as “pompous prick”.  A former school teacher couldn’t resist commenting. “It is easier to throw spears than to catch them,” he noted.

Two aspects loomed large here. None had read my views, which appeared as an opinion. All comments were the result of what the herd heard or what they or others assumed. And none had spelled my name correctly. Forty-eight herd members spelled my name without an “e”. It’s Cooke not Cook.

Several suggested boycotting First Monday. They could, I suppose but that is sort of like trying to lance a pimple on an elephant’s ass.

The parent company of First Monday is Huron Web Printing and Graphics in Wyoming, an $18 million printer that I started 25 years ago this month by borrowing a million dollars. We now have 92 employees and a $4.2 million payroll. I and we have made it a success through 80 and 90-hour work weeks, driving 500 to 600 kilometres a day to meet existing and potential customers, printing 24/7, investing millions of dollars and through a lot of luck.

It was the late Marceil Saddy who stressed the importance of hiring people who are better than you because they do nothing but make you look good. Obviously I’ve had some success in that area.

I’m going to go out on a limb here and suggest most of my detractors; especially those on Twitter and Facebook couldn’t do what I or we do. Most successful people haven’t time to Twitter or Facebook or social media their days away. They are too busy.

I started First Monday because I found selling print boring. I sell about $12 or $13 million of our gross sales and I still find print sales boring. As you can appreciate by all of the above First Monday is anything but. I get to share my opinions along with the opinions of my friends and others in the business community. They seem to enjoy it.

We have a glossy 40 lb. heat set cover; full colour inside and we are delivered mostly by Canada Post. Unlike our competitors you won’t find us soaking wet at the end of your driveway.

Which brings me to this. Others before the 48 herd members have suggested a boycott of First Monday.

Bluewater Power cancelled it’s Save on Energy ads after I suggested the public corporation should use its $35 million in profits to keep power rates down. Instead the profits are offloaded to the City and seven other municipal owners. Sixteen years after Sarnia Hydro “morphed” into Bluewater Power the utility operates as a monopoly with an expensive CEO, $128,000.00 Board of Directors while power rates spiral out of control. But hell, what do I know? Apparently I hit a nerve.

Then there is the mayor of Petrolia. He cancelled Town advertising after I described Kathleen Wynne as a gay granny. Wynne came out of the closet years ago and she is a granny. But hell, what do I know?

If the mayor found my comments offensive he must have gone crazy with the comments of Alberta Wildrose Party finance critic Derek Fildelbrandt. On Facebook Fildelbrandt responded to a constituent congratulating him on telling “the truth about Mr. Wynne or whatever the hell she identifies as”. The brouhaha resulted in Fildelbrandt’s suspension.

Personally, I don’t care about Wynne or her sexual orientation. I care about that fact she runs a failed, debt – bloated Province with out of control spending and among the highest power rates in North America. The power bill at Huron Web is well above $500,000.00 and continues to balloon out of control in a Province that desperately needs manufacturing jobs.

If that makes me a “pompous prick”, so be it.

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