In a desperate move to stem a tsunami of criticism spewing from the local blogosphere, Tofino council carved a sizable chunk out of the district budget to create a special public works team to handle sudden emergencies, major or minor, as they arise around town.
The elite team was created after a consultant’s report recommended drastic action to mitigate citizen unrest in Tofino. The new squad, informally known as the Rolling Ralphies, will take its direction not from council or district staff but directly from the many so-called “bitch blogs” focusing on Tofino and the staggering incompetence of its administration.
As soon as an issue crops up on any blog, the Rolling Ralphies will leap into action — filling potholes, relocating street signs, installing parking meters, ripping out parking meters, razing or restoring the firehall, and any other task as directed by the bloggers-that-be and their hordes of anonymous commenters. “Nothing will be too big, too small, too significant or too inconsequential for us,” stated self-appointed RR leader Flex Byron, now gathering team members for an upcoming organization session at the luxurious Tigh-Na-Mara Resort in Parksville.
Council heaved a collective sigh of relief when the team was created. “We’re tired of taking the heat,” one councillor complained. “We do the best we can, putting in countless hours at meetings and soliciting input, and then we get hammered by a bunch of people who apparently never leave their computers long enough to come to a public consultation. Fine: we’ll just let the bloggers run the whole show.”
Reaction from the blogs so far has been along the usual lines. “Probably some sweetheart developer bought out council so he can have his way with the town just by starting some blogs,” one poster said. Another opined, “Those boneheads hate development so much they just opted out of any decision-making for the town’s good.”
Another councillor, who also declined to be named for fear of blogospheric repercussions, said: “Sure, let’s turn the whole damn town over to a bunch of knee-jerk yahoos fixated on one pet project, with no inkling of how any one issue relates to the hundred other issues, and zero grasp of budgets, planning or the complexities of balancing conflicting interests.”
The Rolling Ralphies should hit Tofino streets early next year, after a three-month training session at the Kona Hilton in Hawaii.