One of the crime scenes

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Scarlet Letters
Part Duh!

My initial assessment of the response to the previous posting (about Hawthorn bushes and sports writers) is that it was a resounding success. It's always pleasing to receive some favorable comments from folks whose opinions I respect. It is easily more pleasing though, to elicit the gnashing of those whom I have tried to take to task and their supporters. I will first deal with the highly critical comment left by AnonyMoses at 4:50. I find it such a classic piece of wing-nut crap that I can only do it justice line by line and thank A-Moses for publishing it that way.

This is vile. Koot and BC Mary should both hang your heads in shame.

Vile is offering a dying man a million dollars to change his vote in Parliament. Vile is being a rogue government and ignoring court decisions that go against your agenda as in the BC Lieberals v. the Crown Prosecutors, or more recently support for the mentally disabled cynically linked to IQ tests. Just because you don't agree with me, doesn't make my opinion VILE, and my head (and overall posture) is high and holding, thanks!

Tom Hawthorn is one of the most insightful and eloquent writers I have ever had the privilege to work with. His story is fine.

Thank you for that somewhat incomplete "disclosure" as in "I have ever had the privilege to work with." If you think Tom is all so "insightful and eloquent" you might be interested in my list of the "Ten Most Maudlin Movies of All Time."

Tom should not have to apologize for the fact that his is not an investigative piece. It is simply a summary of the story to date.

Remember. This story is not on the radar for well over 50 per cent of the BC population. Summary stories are necessary.

Obviously your reading comprehension is lacking, I never took Mr. Hawthorn to task for writing a "summary" piece. I took him to task for doing yet another drive-by smear of honest critics of the BC Rail deal and this farce of a trial. I hold other parties responsible for the fact that "This story is not on the radar for well over 50 per cent of the BC population." Canned Waste/GlowBall tries to ignore it and the Goober and Maul, when they do bother to give it any attention, seem pre-occupied with adding some weird spin that tries to lessen its relevance and make fun of those who think it is important. I merely find it amusing that they apparently think sports writers (and, I guess, Obituary Specialists) are the most qualified to cover complex legal issues.

Lovers of democracy can thank their lucky stars that mr tieleman is still covering this story, because none of the recent media coverage would have hapened (sic) if the only writers on the subject were this blog and BCM.

In your (or your masters') dreams, Bucko. We in the "Conspiracy Club" greatly appreciate Bill T's ongoing efforts to cover this important story, even if we do occasionally take him to task for seeming too overly tame in his efforts to maintain an appearance of impartiality. For awhile the only writers on the subject WERE this blog and BCM, Bucko.

Get off your high horses. Your condescending attitudes could easily make this story go away.

How your type can confuse being condescended to, with being condescending, just illustrates how tortured your logic has to be to defend the ridiculous position you inexplicably seem determined to take. Look - if the combined powers of the Vancouver Sun, the Vancouver Province AND the Victoria Times-Colonist with the assistance of the Glow Ball TeeVee Megalopoly can't make this go away, I doubt BC Mary and I can. Indeed, if anything, our efforts and those of others have made it impossible for the supposedly "major" media in our province to continue to pretend that nothing is happening here.

I will have to give some thought about whether I should reply to Mr. Hawthorn's comment here on the front page, or privately to his kindly provided e-mail address.
I'm leaning towards - here on the front page, with a copy forwarded to the email address.

Is the BC Rail Deal truly going "off the tracks" metaphorically, rather than literally, as it tends to do every three or four days the last time I checked?

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Wednesday, February 27, 2008

No, Not Nathaniel
This Other Guy!

A friend clued me into the fact that the Globe and Mail had once again weighed in on the BC Rail Trial. I guess it wasn't too surprising that they would publish yet another sports writer's opinions on the matter. Well at least Tom Hawthorn (no "e" at the end as in the last name of the "real" writer Nathaniel Hawthorne). However even though Tom might not be up to writing something of the caliber of The Scarlet Letter, he is not lacking in the ability to employ scarlet prose in his mis-guided efforts to discredit sincere followers of this case and generally join in with the Canned Waste exercise in mis-information or information suppression. Well, at least I appreciate the fact that Mr. Hawthorn didn't feel obliged to take us to bed with the Basis like his fellow sports writer (and last year's Gyro winner) Gary Mason.

I have to admit that I am somewhat personally insulted that Mr. Hawthorn didn't mention me by name while questioning the sanity of almost every other critic of the ongoing farce referred to as the BC Rail Trial or HMTQ v. Basi et. al.

For this blogger, this case has just about everything

Covert photos. Mysterious witnesses. A billion dollars. 'We just need to add some sex and it would be perfect'

.....Robin Mathews, a retired professor notorious for his long-running battles with the Canadian literary establishment, writes incendiary postings from the court for, which are reprinted at "The Legislature Raids" blog by a tireless champion of the case known by her online pseudonym of BC Mary....../snip

Mr. Mathews's cynicism about the judiciary is never far from the surface and BC Mary's conspiratorial musings about the motives of CanWest journalists are pointlessly distracting. Still, this is a case where even so sober a commentator as Vancouver Sun columnist Vaughn Palmer warned the Premier earlier this month about avoiding "suspicions of cover-up."

I guess if Vaughn Palmer sees a problem (even if only of perception) then does that mean something is really happening? Tell me Mr. Hawthorn, please, my tin foil hat is getting itchy and I want to take it off. These people (like Mr. Hawthorn and Mr. Spector) who accuse everyone in sight of being conspiracy theorists should perhaps look up the word "conspiracy" in the dictionary. When a group of people engage in a concerted effort to bring about a desired result (that may not be appreciated by the general public) behind closed doors and then refuse to even explain what they did, that is pretty well the textbook definition of a "conspiracy." The only conspiracy I've noticed in Studio 54 (BC Supreme Court) and Victoria is the one that wants everybody to believe that anything that was questionable or WRONG with the sale of BC Rail (in addition to breaking Campbell's campaign promise not to sell it) can be laid at the feet of two lowly ministerial aides and one even lowlier staffer (thanks for clearing that up John - not!).

Mr. Hawthorn carries on in the same "let's minimize this issue" vein until the end, when he completely descends into gratuitous slams against Bill Tieleman, who has been spared for most of this collection of drivel and drool. But then the self editor in Mr. Hawthorn and the editorial staff at the G & M showed that they are on holiday with this gem.

Another casualty of the never-ending case has been Mr. Tieleman's other blog in which he posts as the Wine Barbarian, an oenophile (which I believe is ancient Greek for wino)........

Really, and I guess someone who busily posts lots of old style snail mail and licks their own stamps is just another kind of "glue sniffer" who ingests their adhesive by a different means.

I don't really hate sports writers, though thanks to the Globe and Mail I'm rapidly losing some respect for many. Indeed, I actually love reading a good sports writer, writing about sports.....Jim Taylor comes to mind and I remember I miss him. But Gary, Tom and others, I know you aren't interested in my advice, but I'm giving it away today. Sports are not ultimately important, they are a distraction at worst or an entertainment at best (other than participating in them of course). If you guys want to grow up and write about serious issues, keep in mind that it isn't the same as slagging a loser team (Maple Laffs or Grizzlies?) or an arrogant winning team (Patriots or Cowboys) in the sports pages.

Perhaps CanWest would be able to cover the BC Rail Trial better if they worked out a trade with their sister ship Glow Ball and acquired Squire Barnes for their Victoria/Vancouver politics and crime desk.

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Friday, February 22, 2008

Miles and Miles
of Texas

I'm no fan of the Republic of Texas in general and except for Willie Nelson, Bob Wills and Molly Ivins it hasn't produced all that much that I would miss (disclosure - I am NOT a Dallas Cowboys fan). It would be fine with me if they continued to build the border wall entirely around the state, though maybe if they could leave El Paso and Austin on my side of the wall, I would appreciate it. Maybe I've been too hasty in my judgement though, as it appears that a few more Texans get what is going on than British Columbians. For those of you who may wonder what a protest in Texas has to do with the BC Rail Scam, see NAFTA-NASCO SuperHighway from almost a year ago, over at BC Mary's place.

The Trans-Texas Corridor is just a southern section of the NAFTA-NASCO Superhighway, while the Campbell Government's new vision for what used to be BC Rail and the Gateway Project are the northwestern terminus. Of course the object of the project (along with SPP) is the total integration of North America in a way that will satisfy the greed of the trans-national corporate elite, who generally are based in the USA, even if they do keep most of their money elsewhere. According to a story published in Raw Story concerning an upcoming report on Lou Dobbs: (emphasis - kc)

As Senators Clinton and Obama prepared to debate in their state, Texans were marching in protest over the NAFTA superhighway known as the Trans-Texas Corridor, or I-69, the primary purpose of which is to speed the delivery of goods coming in from Mexico to proposed inland ports.

The TTC is planned to span the state of Texas from Laredo, on the Mexican border, to Texarkana, on the border with Arkansas, to continue north to Canada. The projected cost is $183 billion over fifty years, with no American companies expressing interest in financing it.

With no public approval required to begin construction, repeated calls against the TTC at public meetings, with seldom a word of support, may easily go unheeded. (hmmm, sounds familiar -kc)

"This is about international--global companies that are coming in and having their way with our politicians," says Terri Hall of TexasTURF. "It doesn't matter what does to the people in the path," she continues, "it doesn't matter what it does to our way of life..."

"Citizens here," says an unidentified man at a public hearing, "are not going to bear the burden so Wal-Mart can get their cargo into the U.S. cheaper and faster."

Congressman Ron Paul (R-TX) is among opponents of the TTC, doubting the intentions of those planning its construction. He cites millions of acres subject to eminent domain, which the state promises to use against landowners who protest, and also notes that he has yet to encounter a person that supports the TTC.

It's heartening to hear some Texans are concerned about these issues as well. After all let us not forget how it took thousands of Mexicans under Santa Anna almost two weeks to kill Davy Crockett, Jim Bowie, William Travis and 186 of their comrades at the Alamo. Just over a month later Sam Houston defeated General and President (well, "self proclaimed dictator" - don't we wish presidents went to war these days?) Santa Anna while outnumbered by two to one at San Jacinto, leading to the creation of the Republic of Texas. That's the kind of people the dozen or so of us in British Columbia who are aware of and opposed to the greedy wet dreams of the Bu$hies, Harper and Campbell can appreciate as allies in the fight.

After all, Texas does have a few things to make up for, like Tom Delay, the Bushes* and the murder of John F. Kennedy.


Deep within
my heart,
...lies a melody


(* Many, if not most, Texans will point out that the Bushes are Yankees - But it was Texas oil and attractive tax rates for the rich that lured the Bushies to become residents. The tax rates in New England being far too onerous for their kind.)

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Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Who'd a thunk?
More Delay!

BC Liberals excercising "PRIVILEGE"

Yesterday the gang got together in B.C. Supreme Court to discuss the latest in delaying tactics by the Crown in the matter of HMTQ v. Basi, et. al. Somehow Keith Baldrey had already either ferreted (don't be self conscious Gary) out or had been tipped off that the hearing over the Crown's appeal of the defence getting to attend the Star Chamber "secret" hearing with "secret" witness(es) had been set for early June. That seemed to make it unlikely that much of import was likely to happen yesterday, or indeed until sometime in June, when and if the "secret witness" issue is resolved. One would think that all parties could continue to work on the outstanding disclosure issues and who knows maybe sometime before the 2010 Olympics this matter could actually go to trial. I don't want to seem like I'm rushing people or anything.

It is difficult not to note the timing which seems to have delayed any possible explosive disclosures until comfortably after the current Legislative Session. For some in-explicable reason I get the impression that Gordon Campbell and Stonewally both just hate having to respond to questions that arise from Justice Bennett's courtroom during the abbreviated little sham that pretends to be Question Period in James Bay. Apparently the Crown according to Wild Bill Berardino, who legend has it was actually in attendance yesterday, is willing to waive "cabinet" privilege on "certain" documents requested by the defence, but are still intending to claim "solicitor-client" privilege about others. I'm sorry Mr. Transparent Gordon Campbell and Gang, but I don't really see this as much of a concession to the pursuit of truth and justice. I'm kinda stubborn in my belief that all documents concerning business done in the name of the citizens of British Columbia is the business of those citizens. I don't care who you sold your car to, Gordo, and how much you got for it, but I do think you owe me and everybody else an explanation about what you did with our railroad. Call me old-fashioned!

Gyro Alert!

I would like to remind people that just like the Oscars and the Grammies it is the season of the Gyro Awards. See last year's presentation and this post if you aren't sure what a Gyro (and Vacuum) are awarded for. This year there is a nominee with a very good shot at taking home the hardware in each category, but the koot is open to suggestions. In brief, the Gyro is awarded for the article about the BC Rail Trial that spins the hardest while the Vac is awarded for the best job of ignoring significant news. The criteria for this year's awards is the article had to have appeared before midnight December 31, 2007 and the ignored event had to have happened by the same deadline. Last year's winners were.

The Golden(painted lead) Gyro - Gary Mason in the Globe and Mail for taking us to bed with David Basi and his wife.

The Vacuum - Lucinda Chodan - who was kind enough to define for us what was news and what wasn't. It didn't hurt that she got a little snippy about being quoted, a surprising shyness in a pro media person.

If you have any nominations for 2007, please submit them in the comments. Thanks

This year I am also considering awarding a new award for coverage that actually, really, genuinely is GOOD and of all things serves the public interest. Suggestions are welcome in this positive category also!


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Wednesday, February 06, 2008

IANAL*, but
You are a WATB*!

After almost four years of ignoring the whole Raid on the Legislature and the sputtering court actions since, Keith Baldrey has jumped into the fray. In the past if he mentioned this issue at all, it was only to belittle its importance and basically tell his readers to "move on folks, nothin' to see here." Robin Matthews has referred to him (with reason to this observer) as Gordon Campbells Personal PR Flak at Can West). Maybe Robin was referring to Vaughn Palmer, but heck, Gordo has almost two hundred of 'em that are even called communications people. Normally I would be happy to see Asper's Artificial News (Everything that is fit to be Amusing), paying some attention to this HUGELY important matter that someone seems to be trying to sweep under a rug.

However at the same time as Keith pays some long overdue attention and column space (in Burnaby Now, of course - there must be waaaaaaaay tooooooo much REALLY important stuff in the Sun, Province and Times-Colonist) to the BC Rail Trial, he feels that it is necessary to insult everyone who has been picking up the slack and at least keeping this issue before SOME of the victims of corrupt government and Grand Theft - Railroad. The troubling part of Some troubling questions in trial in Burnaby Now are the following screeds:

Massive amounts of missing evidence, procedural bungling, a misplaced computer hard drive, a top-secret Crown witness, a family relationship between an RCMP investigator and a senior B.C. Liberal party official, wiretaps catching conversations involving the premier - this case has it all.

Yeah, but if you or I think anything is wrong with all this I/you am/are a paranoid "conspiracy buff," as carrot head goes on to make clear below. (or I know it looks bad, but believe me, there's nothin' to see here, so move along, folks)(Lookie over there, shiny object........)

The case has even attracted a cult-like following of conspiracy buffs, who have convinced themselves the trial will eventually and inevitably reveal the true satanic qualities of the B.C. Liberal government and particularly of Premier Gordon Campbell himself.

On various Internet websites (Google "Basi-Virk" and you'll find them), these conspiracy buffs continually work themselves into a lather about how every procedural delay in the trial is really proof of a government-run conspiracy. Most of them are stunningly ignorant of how the justice system works (or doesn't work), but their rants and ramblings are actually fairly entertaining.

As the headline points out, I am not a lawyer, but then I don't claim to be, even though I am interested in topics involving justice. I imagine you call yourself a columnist or pundit - well, I have news for you in acronym form. YANACOP, they either illuminate and/or clarify issues and/or entertain, often with humor, like say Alan Fotheringham. You, my man, do very little of either. I can see you now, standing with your mic, in front of the Legislature, superciliously talking down to us unwashed who you know (for you radiate this) could never understand what is "really" going on - but of course you do. You would even share it with us Keith, if we weren't so dirt dumb and all..............oops, gotta go hatch a conspiracy!

Speak for yourself Mr. Baldrey, though IANAL, I tend to think I have more knowledge and experience of the courts or so-called "justice" system than yourself. Of course that is just based on some of the stupid things you say on courthouse steps with a microphone in your hand or in your "entertaining" (not necessarily) columns. Thanks for the "fairly entertaining," rating even though they aren't "ramblings."

For these paranoid ideologues, anyone who disagrees with them is the enemy, and nothing short of a charge of treason against Campbell will satisfy them. But while these deep-rooted fantasies may be slightly wide of the mark, that doesn't mean the B.C. Liberals can breathe easy.

Keith, if you can read just YOUR OWN paragraph above, the one that lists massive amounts of missing evidence, through to being investigated by relatives and you didn't even mention a famous dinner attended by the Finance Minister that was recorded, or the original lie about selling BC Rail, or why did Christy Clark quit (to spend time with family and then try to be mayor of Vancouver) and on and on and on. Keith, paranoia implies that one is seeing "imaginary" stuff. I don't know what they call what you have, but the symptoms include ignoring reality. I already told Vaughn to watch for the elephant and don't get stepped on.

All of us who have been paying attention to this circus of a trial feel insulted by your utterances, but not surprised. Usually you merely insult our intelligence with you boring pronouncements from on high, or in front of the Rockpile. But as one of my colleagues suggested. "You've crapped on your own work, Keith." I visualize a new smaller pile of crap on a bigger pile of crap, or kinda like the basement part of an outhouse.

Acronyms in Headline/Post Explained

* I Am Not A Lawyer
* Whiney Ass Titty Baby
* You Are Not A Columnist Or Pundit

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