Calgary’s Academic Mayor Jyoti Gondek Didn’t Get Her Ph.D. In Common Sense

Written By Wyatt Claypool, Posted on December 30, 2022

Mayor Jody Gondek’s governance of Calgary has been so far disastrous, but at the very least it is proving the point even more clearly than Naheed Nenshi’s time as mayor, that fashionable left-wing public policy just doesn’t work. 

Nenshi and Gondek both being former professors in the city of Calgary are obviously ideologically to the left, but while Nenshi was a lacklustre mayor who let crime slowly rise and was not an ally of taxpayers, Gondek,  on the other hand, is an ideological puritan. 

(Photo from the Globe and Mail)

Although both Nenshi and Gondek are former professors from Mount Royal University and the University of Calgary respectively, you could tell Nenshi was a business prof, because despite spending too much, raising taxes, and letting crime get out of hand, he could hold himself back from jumping on board the dumbest of left-wing policy bandwagons. Gondek on the other hand cannot. 

Just from observing Gondek’s performance as the Mayor of Calgary so far, you can tell she has a Ph.D. in “urban sociology.” She is the type of politician who talks constantly about fringe issues that are intellectually satisfying to the left-wing academic crowd.

Gondek doesn’t care about high crime, high property taxes, Calgary’s spotty snow-removal services, or the visibly increasing problem of homelessness and drug addiction.

According to Gondek herself, in response to Premier Danielle Smith talking about discrimination against unvaccinated people, she cares about:

Of the things I could say, I choose to focus on demonstrating to this premier the work that our city continues to do around anti-racism, Indigenous relations, Holocaust remembrance, allyship with the LGBTQ2S+ community & equity-based awareness. In other words, work that matters.

Gondek is obsessed with talking about racism, equity, the “climate emergency,” “stigmatization,” and diversity, among other supposedly pressing issues facing the city.

Out-of-control crime? What out-of-control crime? 

Gondek is currently sitting with only a 35 percent approval rating, according to the last ThinkHQ poll, despite being in what is usually considered the honeymoon period for a new mayor. 55 percent of Calgarians explicitly disapprove of her job performance, with only 9 percent being undecided still. 

(Photo from ThinkHQ, CTV News Posted Poll)

Calgarians could quickly detect that there was something about Mayor Jyoti Gondek that felt unserious. No doubt her “climate emergency” declaration she made after being sworn in as mayor and her focus on tackling hate crimes instead of general crime didn’t help the public’s perception of her.  

It is mindboggling to think about how much Gondek focuses on the issue of hate crime, while she is the same person as a councilor who voted against an increase in the police budget, and now that she is mayor she still has not properly beefed up the Calgary Police’s budget and enabled them to go after criminals. 

When shootings were reported to have risen by 30 percent in 2021, Gondek responded by asking the provincial and federal governments for more money for housing and mental healthcare. 

No joke, in response to six back-to-back shootings in August (2022) Gondek said:

There are people that are feeling isolated and lost, feeling no sense of community…There are housing issues that are putting people into really difficult positions, and if we don’t start treating those things together, and if we don’t start taking municipalities seriously, we’re not going to approach a problem in a holistic way.

Apparently when Calgary’s urban sociologist mayor sees people being shot left and right she thinks the solution is to arrest poverty and encourage the criminals to take some Ritalin and have a mental health day.

Well, Jyoti Gondek is far too fancy to take the issue of crime seriously. Frankly, it seems like she has put more time and energy into tackling climate and environmental issues on the municipal level. 

Not only did she declare a climate emergency early into her first year as mayor, but she approved a municipal climate plan that would cost Calgarians an estimated $87 billion by 2050 in order to try and become a net-zero emissions city. Just recently Gondek and 10 other members of the city council voted in favour of banning plastic bags, and are now forcing retailers to charge customers $0.15 for paper bags and $1 for reusable bags, fees that will be doubling after the first year. 

(Photo from CTV News Calgary)

Not only is this an extremely foolish move both from the environmental standpoint that plastic bags take far less energy to produce than paper or reusable bags, but it puts further financial pressure on Calgarians already suffering in the inflation crisis. 

On top of all that it has been noted in several jurisdictions that have banned plastic bags in the past decade that food poisoning cases have spiked after the bans came into effect. This is because reusable bags are considered the most economic option but if the bags are not washed frequently (further demolishing the eco-friendly argument) people are more likely to be poisoned from rotten food juice getting into the fabric of the bags and contaminating other products. 

This is just another instance of Mayor Gondek and the other leftists on the city council voting in favour of a policy they think will be effective in theory (it’s also fashionable) when common sense and all available evidence would suggest otherwise. 

On homelessness, which is becoming a massive issue in downtown Calgary, Gondek has pushed to provide more support for the homeless and doing things like trying to “de-stigmatize” homelessness while effectively just enabling people to deteriorate on the streets, doing drugs, and committing crimes. She even once denounced the police for clearing an obviously illegal homeless encampment. 

Gondek stated that removing homeless people from these camps just “dehumanizes an already marginalized population,” as if it is somehow humane to enable self-destructive behaviour and not have the police intervene. 

Over and over again, it seems like Mayor Jyoti Gondek is completely obsessed with the theory of public policy and is ignoring all the problems the theories supporting her policy cause, or don’t adequately address. She may have a Ph.D., but she lacks an education in common sense.

Ralph Klein was definitely not a high falutin academic, but he had the basic common sense to manage the city like a place people actually have to live in, and not a sociological sandbox to experiment with trendy left-wing policy within. 

Wyatt Claypool

Wyatt is a student at Mount Royal University, where he is the president of its Campus Conservative club. In his writing, he focuses on covering provincial and federal politics, firearms regulation, and the energy sector. Wyatt has also previously written for The Post Millennial.

10 responses to “Calgary’s Academic Mayor Jyoti Gondek Didn’t Get Her Ph.D. In Common Sense”

  1. News Now Canada Independent Media says:

    very true in this story

  2. Nestor Pistor says:

    There is BS degree, then PhD. PhD means ‘Pile higher&Deeper’ !

  3. Ws says:

    Clueless idiot living in a bubble that was enabled by the systems made long before her that worked which she is now trying to destroy. Classic.

  4. LEN says:

    She is a typical globalist shill, what about the people who pay the bills eh? PFFT…

  5. Valerie Dove says:

    Excellent discussion. I think we need to address the elephant in the room: how did this leftist get elected? Maybe the next essay could explore the weaponization of unions and voter apathy that led us to this incompetent and harmful politician undermining what used to be the most pragmatic, libertarian city in Canada.

  6. Denise Chabot says:

    It’s time to tackle the task of getting a serious mayor in Calgary. Neighbourhood by neighbourhood until there are enough numbers to shame her into stepping down.

  7. Peter says:

    Hoping to see more of your work in future.

  8. Sharon Moore says:

    Real people, paying real money in taxes, deserve better from our city council than this. She is a disgrace & under her “leadership” Calgary could well become a crime-ridden sh*thole where no one wants to live.

  9. Dan Mackie says:

    Forbid voting machines, and require credible scrutineers. Watch that change who gets elected. Incidentally, I would say Klein is the spelling of Ralph’s last name. Otherwise good content!!