It’s not a tea party
“A revolution is not a dinner party, or writing an essay, or painting a picture, or doing embroidery; it cannot be so refined, so leisurely and gentle, so temperate, kind, courteous, restrained and magnanimous.”
—Mao Tse-tung

We are not talking about a starting a revolution like Mao did but we are talking about owners trying to overthrow an entrenched board of directors.

There is power, money and jobs at stake so a condo election can become very nasty indeed.

Many owners are shocked when they see how unscrupulous their boards and their property manager can act. They don't know how to react to the lies, threats and cheating that the incumbent directors and their property manager may resort to.

Often they are beaten senseless in the battle for proxies and votes and they can't understand how it happened.

Although the Condominium Act, the condo's by-laws and the courts laid out the rules for holding elections, there is no referee, aside from the courts, to insure that both sides behave legally or honestly.

The owners haven't even read the rule book so they do not know how corporation meetings are suppose to run and what duties and powers the chairman, the register, the scrutineers and the owners have at an owners meeting.

They are further dismayed when the corporation's lawyer openly sides with the board. This is because they do not understand how politics really works.

Around 500 BC Protagoras founded Sophism, a philosophy that taught that winning is more important than ethics and honesty. They taught the powerful that they should ignore religious teachings of right and wrong and that proper conduct is subject to the whims of those in power.

Basically they offered respectability and justification to the cheating and lying used to seize and retain power.

In the cases of condo corporations, few condo's lawyers and property managers have any scruples about helping a dishonest and unethical board of directors beat off a challenge by unhappy owners.

Dirty tricks
The board, property manager and the corporation's lawyer have a big bag of dirty tricks to insure that the incumbents win. They include but are definitely not limited to:

It is common for the property manager, the superintendent or the security guard to threaten to call the police and lay trespassing charges of when candidates canvas the owners for support.
Lawyer letters
Lawyers send letters intimidating the candidates or send letters to the owners that discredit opposition candidates.
Threats Owners are threatened by the managers or superintendents if they do not support the incumbents.
Withholding services Give us your proxy and the work you need will get done.
Vandalism Car tires get slashed.
Proxy fraud Forged and improper proxies support the incumbents.
Chairman The chairman of the meeting abuses his position to favour the incumbents.

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