I have been following the World Economic Forum story with interest as I believe that an event with such a negative perception just does not belong at Whistler. I don't think we need to worry about getting "our name out there" in association with an event which caters to the rich and powerful. Our name is already out there for our great skiing and riding, not to mention our world class village experience! What we don't need at a key time of the season is a restriction of the access to our village nor photos of riot police surrounding our beautiful mountains.
Lets just stick to what we do best: give our visiting skiers a great experience and let mother nature provide the oohs and ahhs!
In closing I humbly request our council to respectively decline an invitation to the World Economic Forum to come to Whistler.
While the municipality encourages and considers public input on all issues, we must nonetheless express a concern with the content of the full-page advertisement in last weeks Pique regarding the World Economic Forum.
First, the advertisement was placed by an unnamed agency so, therefore, readers are not able to fairly decide whether the information provided is from a credible source. It is usual for organizations to identify themselves and their goals or agendas when placing advertisements, particularly one as partisan as this. It should be noted that the municipalitys information package does not represent any one position on this issue.
Second, the content used from the municipal Web site has been taken out of context and presented in a manner more suited to disinformation and spin. In particular, the quotes used from the Experiences of the Delegation to the WEF in New York are excerpts taken from a larger body of work that describes the delegations perceptions and experiences in their own words, both positive and negative. The paragraph regarding riot police in 2001 was not published or spoken by any of the delegates and was not obtained from the municipal information package. Its unattributed, and its inclusion with the other quotes in the box is misleading.
As well, only part of the survey question is quoted, therefore implying it was misleading and not an accurate polling of public opinion. Wed like to point out that the survey question described the conference as high profile, not generic, and described the type and number of delegates, the timing, and the session topics from the 2002 forum, and both the advantages and disadvantages of being a venue, and it was conducted after the issue was publicized in local media. It should also be noted that professional pollsters consider that the sample size used provides an accurate reflection of public opinion given the population of this area. The full question and all the responses, both positive and negative, are provided on the municipal Web site.