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“John So for PM” October 5, 2007

Posted by natasha in HEADLINE +ARTICLES.
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John So, arguable is the World’s Most Outstanding Mayor. The winner of World Mayor 2006, is Melbourne’s first directly elected Lord Mayor. Born in Hong Kong, he is an example of the ‘Australian dream’. World Mayor Society cited, amongst other things, the successful staging of the 2006 Commonwealth Games (where he was cheered louder than Steve Barracks, John Howard, and even the Queen) and So’s immense popularity among the young population of Melbourne as their reason for choosing So. In its verdict, the judging panel described So as ‘possibly the first city leader to enjoy ‘cult status’.

Known around the Chinese and Restaurateur community as the ‘10%’ man, for having at least a 10% stake in most Asian restaurant in town. His influence has enjoyed a rapid popularity. It wouldn’t hurt us to have the Chinese power brokers and other influential figures supporting his cause for Melbourne.

Now in his second term as mayor, John So’s passion for his city, his enduring enthusiasm for his job, humanity and self-effacing manner have made him the most popular politician among younger Australians. Melbourne’s longest serving and first elected Lord Mayor John So can be viewed as a positive symbol of diversity in Australian public life. Elected to a second term in 2004, the affection shown for Mayor So in the Victoria state capital has even manifested itself in a tribute record, an ‘official unofficial’ fan website, a birthday tribute website, and countless other unofficial merchandise. Not many mayors can claim to have had a record made in their honour or a t-shirt proclaiming their name across residents’ chests (the ‘John So – he’s my bro’ garment, which was also the record’s title).

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Since becoming Mayor, one of John So’s aims has been to engage with young people and to make sure they know they are a vital part of Melbourne society.

He has succeeded.

One young Melburnian wrote: “John So has captured the imagination of the people of his city. He has especially done so with young people. Where else in the world do people under 25 cheer and stamp and shout out the name of the mayor?”

So, so far so good. Why not go all the way, to the Government House in Canberra that is. With almost the same height, hair almost gone, bushy eyebrows, sharing the same first name and similar happy chap smile, John So could pass for the PM, after all he’s probably more popular than his Anglo-Saxon counter part.

He has long been credited for his success in restoring back public’s trust and confidence in the City Council, which was known for its complex internal office politics. And in the mean time has transformed Melbourne from being a city featured by squabbling and petty mindedness, to a place of big thinking and grand results.

As a mayor of Asian heritage in the strongly diverse city, Mayor So champions links with other Asian cities, emphasising sister city relations with Osaka, Japan and Tianjin, China and working within the Business Partner City Network of 12 global cities. Melbourne is Australia’s second largest city and describes itself as the nation’s cultural capital, though its prominence as a financial centre is undisputable. He as kept his election promises, with the help of his team, and implemented it, which sees Melbourne voted as World’s Most Liveable City on numerous times in his time in the office.

With a record like that you can’t really go wrong. Australia needs a leader who really knows its people. Whom the Americans cannot easily cow. Who welcomes diversity and appreciate its people and land’s history. Someone, who truly has lived the life of the common people. Someone who has achieve the ‘Australian Dream’. John So for Prime Minister, why not? Rudy Guiliani (ex-mayor of New York) is doing it. Oh, wait, Rudy is white.

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Comments»

1. natasha - October 5, 2007

Click on the pics for full image. One the fan website, underneath the ‘Merchandise’ button, it says: “Buy Your Piece of So.”
i thought it’s funny. He’s great. Period.


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