One of the crime scenes

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

OmniTRAX ™

Omnitrax was in the news this morning, in the Kootenays at least. It seems that Omnitrax ("the largest privately held rail services company in North America" - source),wants to pull rail service from Grand Forks. This is being resisted by the town, but usually the railroad eventually gets it way. It gets to remove service AND keep any gifts of real estate that were originally given to encourage the development of rail service. Anyone paying attention has seen this process happen to community after community at terrible cost to the local economy and the planet's evironmental health.

In Grand Forks the loss of rail cars to connect to anywhere in North America will most likely result in the closure of the slag processing industry that cleans up old smelter waste from what was once "the largest non-ferrous copper smelter in the British Empire" providing local jobs and income at the same time. The old slag is processed to be used for abrasive products, sandblasting applications, and granules to coat asphalt shingles. To ship the current output would put 4,000 semi's on the secondary highway at greater cost both financially and in carbon emissions. The loss of service would have a negative effect on shipping forest products when demand returns for these south of the border.

Click to Enlarge Map
Kettle Falls International Railway

At a time when we shouldn't be tearing out old railroad infrastructure, but building more to move goods and people, those running government and the corporate elite (the same crowd, eh?) only see the short term profits to be made by real estate development of the associated right of ways and switching yards. Omnitrax, "an affiliate of The Broe Companies (," says on its website that it has a vision concerning:

"We are an active buyer and manager of transportation-related assets, and we assist industry in site selection--ensuring multiple transportation options that create long-term value"

And in the Central Valley of California, they brag of this project:

An example of our innovative approach to business development is the creation of Eco Transport, a container-on-barge service and satellite container terminal that links importers and exporters in the Central Valley of California with major West Coast ports. The project anticipates removing over one million truck trips from the highway system, reducing traffic congestion and harmful air emissions.

But here in the colonies, Omnitrax wants to remove trains and ADD TRUCKS to often already inadequate and poorly maintained highways. Just as CP has pulled out of much of Southern BC, leaving a legacy of shopping malls and condos, courtesy of Marathon (and Gordon Campbell - erstwhile Marathon Man), Omnitrax will gravitate to the profit centers and leave the rest of Canada to move their goods by dogsled or canoe, if necessary.

Just a couple weeks ago the CBC had this news item, about Omnitrax wanting to abandon a line serving northwest Saskatchewan.

Last fall, the Carlton Trail Railway, owned by OmniTRAX Inc., announced it would be decommissioning the rail line, tearing up the track that links Meadow Lake to Prince Albert.

That's about 320 kilometres of line running through 12 communities.

It was bad news for Meadow Lake's struggling forest industry, which used the rail line to transport its product. The local group started negotiating with the company to purchase the rail line.

Who Is Pat Broe?

Pat Broe is the founder and head cheese of the Broe Group.

Real Estate Transportation & Energy Investment Development

* Diversified value investor
* Buyer & builder of businesses
* Focused on asset based companies

We acquire, develop and manage commercial real estate assets, own and operate diverse transportation businesses centered on rail, maritime and terminal management, and explore natural resources--all as independent business platforms. Each has its own dynamic growth strategy. Over the last 35 years, we’ve built a multi-billion dollar asset base and a world-class management team through direct investment in and development of each of these business groups.

Putting Pat Broe into the search box over at BC Mary's Legislature Raids might make you think that Mr. Broe is pretty well connected in B.C. for a guy from Denver. Omnitrax is of course one of the elephants that hangs out in the courtroom down at Robson and Smithe. Omnitrax, the rail division of Broe Group, that excels perhaps in closing rail lines (to make real estate development possible?) and pretending to be in auctions for other railroads (ie BC Rail) in return for "consolation" railroads. The consolation railroad, with no trains, is happily being run by a feller making approximately a cool 1/2 Billion per annum - think what he would have to be paid if he actually had to run some trains!

Omnitrax seemed to be quite involved in the RCMP surveilled dinner at Villa Del Lupo and appears to have retained the infamous Pilot House Lobbying group to promote its agenda in British Columbia. It seems to this hickster in the sticks that Mr. Broe and Mister Campbell are just two birds of a feather flocking together to line their nests even plusher than they already have been lined.

An Affiliate of the Broe Group, OmniTRAX ™ also has the unique capability of offering customers specialized industrial development and real estate opportunities, both on and off the OmniTRAX ™ rail network

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Thursday, July 16, 2009

B.C's Own
Rose Mary Woods?

Nixon had Rose Mary
....Gordo has Rosemarie

Back in 1973, after enjoying a landslide victory in the election of 1972, Richard Nixon found himself increasingly cornered by the constant drip of Watergate allegations, evidence and questions. Although the botched burglaries that started it all had happened before the election the previous fall, CREEP (Nixon's appropriately named re-election committee) had managed to keep the whole incident from becoming an election issue.

This is reminiscent of our recent spring election where Gordo the Greedy and his Gang of Co-conspirators managed to keep almost all relevant issues from having any effect on their re-election, with the apparent collaboration of the supposed opposition NDP. The true state of the economy, the true nature of Campbell's environmental exploitation policies, fish farms, ruin of the river projects and the dictatorship imposed by Bill 30's removal of any sort of local input or control of development were not as important as Carole James' inability to pick a day with good weather to take reporters for a small plane flight, or the hand of an NDP candidate on the clothed breast of a friend in a private photo were much more relevant to the Canned Waste/Glow Ball media enablers, so sorely lacking in any potential Carl Bernsteins or Woodwards. Instead we had to listen to the pontifications of our Vaughn Palmer and Keith Baldrey who by rights should be just receiving their checks from the mighty Public Affairs Bureau along with most of the rest of the journalists and communications experts employed in British Columbia.

Rose Mary Woods

As the steady drip of Watergate picked up its pace, Rose Mary Woods (seen at left performing the famous "stretch") took her place as a "person of interest" or significant character in the ongoing drama that led to the first resignation of a sitting Preznit of the Excited Snakes.

For those too young (or too senile) to remember those heady days when even the Preznit was held at least somewhat accountable here's some of what Wikipedia has to say about Rose Mary Woods, who worked for Richard Milhouse Nixon from 1951 until his fall from grace.

....she moved to Washington, D.C. in 1943, working in a variety of federal offices until she met Nixon while she was a secretary to the Select House Committee on Foreign Aid. Impressed by his neatness and efficiency, she accepted his job offer in 1951.


Fiercely loyal to Nixon, Woods claimed responsibility in 1974 grand jury testimony for inadvertently erasing up to 5 minutes of the 18 1/2 minute gap in one of the Nixon audio tapes (specifically, the one from June 20, 1972) that were central to the scandal. Her demonstration of how this might have occurred—which depended upon her stretching to simultaneously press controls several feet apart (what the press dubbed the "Rose Mary Stretch"[3]) was met with skepticism from those who believed the erasures, from whatever source, to be deliberate. Later investigators identified five to nine separate erasures. The contents of the gap remain a mystery.

Rosemarie Hayes

In this morning's Globe and Mail, former Leaden Gyro winner, Gary Mason, breaks the story of the woman who could turn out to be Gordon Campbell's very own, and maybe not so fiercely loyal, Rose Mary Woods, or more accurately, his own Rosemarie (definitely a touch more Canadian, eh?)

Tapes containing the e-mail correspondence of B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell and members of his cabinet that lawyers in a government corruption trial have insisted are critical to the defence of their clients were ordered destroyed in early May, The Globe and Mail has learned.

According to several sources, the person responsible for managing the government e-mail delivery service has filed an affidavit in court that contains the potentially politically explosive information.

In her affidavit, Rosemarie Hayes, director of Messaging and Collaboration Services, Workplace Technology Services (WTS), states that at the beginning of May of this year, her department requested that backup tapes of government e-mails created prior to May of 2004 be expunged from the system. The e-mails are the subject of a legal proceeding and as such should not have been deleted, according to the government's own guidelines.


The new information would appear to contradict statements made in court last month by government lawyer George Copley.

Mr. Copley said that executive branch e-mails from 2001 to 2005 could not be recovered because backup tapes were kept for only 13 months.


if e-mails that were potentially damaging to the government of Mr. Campbell existed as recently as this May and were ordered destroyed, demands for a probe into the matter could grow even louder and spark calls for an obstruction-of-justice investigation.

There is more over at Gary's piece in the Globe and Mail, especially some description of legislation and policy that pertains to the retention of information, particularly in cases of potential legal proceedings. Unsuprisingly the comments board for this article wasn't just closed down early, but if any were ever left they too are inaccessible to be even read, at least when I visited the article myself, fairly early this morning (PDT of course for this westerner).

I can visualize Gordon Campbell and his creepy, greedy co-horts as they are running around and around a huge container holding all their dispicable and incriminating secrets trying to frantically plug the leaks as the existing leaks keep growing and new leaks pop up top, bottom and sides. I can only try to keep the faith that TRUTH WILL OUT, in the end....and in this case perhaps the truth can set us free from the ongoing crime spree that we have been victimized by for the last eight years by the largest and most successful criminal organization in the province - The BC liaR Government.

I've been grasping at the memory of the Fall of Nixon after the 1972 landslide since that gross evening of May 12. Thinking of Nixon, Harper, Campbell, Bush the Lesser and DickHead Cheney, I can't help wondering why it is that the voters are so inclined to actually elect and entrust with our concerns such obviously psychologically DAMAGED individuals - frankly the ones mentioned are all sociopaths as far as I am concerned.

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Monday, July 13, 2009

Land of the Lost

Click on Image to Enlarge
Gordo's Backroom
Real Estate
Bucket Shop

Monday the thirteenth, an unlucky day for citizens of BC. Tomorrow morning the ownership of 2,509 parcels of property including waterfront property along the sea to sky and parcels in North Vancouver, West Vancouver and all along the old BC Rail right away up to the Peace River region will have been transferred to CN, for the princely sum of $1.00. Or at least this is the case as well as those who care to pay attention can conclude from the negligible amount of information that has been made available to date (over FIVE YEARS) about this supposedly "great deal" for British Columbians. One would suppose that if this transfer wasn't part of the deal, someone would deny it and show documentation to prove otherwise, but nothing of the sort has occurred in FIVE YEARS!

Well, maybe if you happen to be a British Columbian named Maclean (the CEO of CN) or own stock in that American company known as CN it is a good day for you. I, and I'm confident some others, find it thoroughly disgusting to live in a paradise being dis-assembled by a corrupt and criminal government, aided and abetted by an equally compromised justice system and RCMP.

I wouldn't be surprised if Campbell and his gang weren't even interested in governing after 2013. There will be little left to sell give away, and lots of newly freed up real estate to get richer by developing. Or another way of looking at it is that maybe the same people will be "running" B.C. but will in the future be doing it from the boardrooms of the Corporations that were recipients of the Campelloid's largesse. Then the Legislature Buildings may as well be privatized to serve as a bed and breakfast or other private business. Perhaps I should take down the crime scene tape in the picture at the top and put up a "for sale" sign instead!

Even the loyal (to whom?) opposition is complicit in the ongoing crime spree at worst or negligent in their duty to the people at best. Many people have been calling and writing their MLAs, the justice critic and Carole "don't rock the boat" James for weeks now. Finally this morning SOME MLA's and that dog, Leonard Krog are sending out the most pathetic letter detailing how "they don't like the deal either" but apparently they don't dislike it enough to even attempt to do anything about it. I guess that would take time away from counting the money they get with their new, and not donated to charity anymore, salary increases.

Each letter (that I have seen) from an MLA is the exact same letter attributed to Mr. Krog, with the only original touches being the particular MLA's typos and/or mis-spellings of the salutations and/or signatures.

It's a disgusting day to be a British Columbian!

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Wednesday, July 08, 2009


Oxymoron Alert!

CN Operating Remotely
Prince George August 2006
image from Opinion250

"they use a system of remote cameras and computers that do not need visual surveillance of the yard or yards under their control"

When CN took over control of what used to be BC Rail Gordon Campbell assured us that this would result in improvements in service and benefit the citizens of British Columbia. We wouldn't just be able to party on that imaginary One Billion Dollar Cheque, but would all benefit from improved rail service. In all the discussion and questions about the legitimacy and financial aspects of the deal, perhaps not enough attention is being paid to the question of whether there really have been any benefits at all.

It is clear that improved safety wasn't any kind of immediate gain. As soon as the railway was taken over by CN the specialized locomotives with brakes and power designed for BC's steep terrain were considered too costly and were replaced in many cases by equipment perfectly suitable for the praries, but not for the grades of the Fraser Canyon and Cariboo/Chilcotin, some of the most challenging terrain for railroading outside of the Andes. The accident rate was averaging one every three days for awhile, making it pretty easy for the lady spokesperson to easily say in a couple years that they had improved. The so-called experts are today eager to say that the economic crisis is almost over and things are better all ready, but the last time I looked the TSX was still below 10,000. The simple fact is that when things are bad, just being temporarily a little less bad IS an improvement, but a 10% gain after a 200% loss isn't really "Happy Times are Here Again."

One of these accidents near Lilloet caused two trainmen to lose their lives trying to descend a grade with prarie grade equipment that should never have been used on that section of track. A subsequent investigation proved that, but of course this did little for the family members of the trainmen lost because of CN's attempts to cut costs.

Gary E. of the blog How Bad is the Record has been digging up and publishing many documents dealing with the transfer of BC Rail and the almost immediate attempt by CN to have the assessed value of properties involved in the STILL SECRET deal reduced. In one case they felt that they shouldn't have to pay based on the value of buildings they CHOSE not to utilize. Thanks to Gary we can read the:

Decision and Order

B C Rail Partnership
B C Railway Company

Assessor Of Area #08 - Vancouver Sea To Sky Region

CN through its proxy BC Rail Partnership et. al. are simply trying to reduce their taxes owing to Area #08 and apparently hadn't thought of the now fashionable Catalyst Paper tactic of simply remitting what THEY THINK THEY SHOULD! One section of the legal verbiage (sometimes one would think lawyers charge by the word) is as follows:

II. Value of Improvements on the Forsythe Site

[67] The Forsythe Site is located in the Main Yard and includes a control tower and office building.

[68] The control tower on the site was constructed in 1995 and the office building in 1994.

[69] BC Rail, prior to the acquisition by CN, in its rail operations made full use of both the tower, for yard control, and the office building, for administration and yard crew support (changing and lunch rooms).

[70] However, CN says that it does not need the tower for yard control, as they use a system of remote cameras and computers that do not need visual surveillance of the yard or yards under their control. They also argued that administration and yard crew support can be operated out of modular buildings, such as Atco trailers. Mr. Berriault testified that neither the office building nor the tower would have been constructed by CN.

The picture at the top is a result of not needing visual surveillance and operating TRAINS unmanned and unmonitored even by human eyeballs between the old BC Rail Yard and the CN Yard in Prince George - luckily the whole city didn't burn to the ground that day - you usually don't see water bombers in town. Of course the BC liaR's PR firm Assperson Press and Glow Ball TeeVee maintained that the incident illustrated above was a minor mix-up in the SWITCHING YARD and no big deal. It was only thanks to locals with digital cameras and some local media like Opinion250 that anyone knew about the almost catastrophic fire OR the spill of diesel fuel into the river.

So we didn't gain in safety. Apparently CN was supposed to supply 600 new railcars for shippers of goods from the north - but no one can verify if this ever happened.

When BC Rail operated the line the railway itself maintained the fences to help prevent the killing of cattle by trains. Under CN that became the responsibility and cost of the ranchers. Of course during the phoney election just past, Gordo the Greedy made some noises about CN stepping up to the plate and assuming the same responsibilities that BC Rail had previously. I'm not sure how this has turned out, but I remember that Gordon Campbell campaigned in 2001 on a promise to NOT SELL BC RAIL! So either somebody LIED or CN stole a railroad (or does he get off because he didn't sell it, HE GAVE IT AWAY?)

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Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Ottawa also has a
House of Infamy

Victoria doesn't have a monopoly on having a taxpayer supported institution that tends to specialize in absurd and rude behaviour, that would be amusing if there weren't so many real issues to be addressed. The stonepile in James Bay also is not unique in being full of overpaid and fancy dressed folks who act as if they are completely un-accountable to those who elect them and pay their way. The Major League version of the Legislative Assembly in Victoria is on the Ontario bank of the Ottawa River and this guy used to be the frog with the biggest lily pad in that pond (or sewer).

Lyin' Brian
The jaw that walks like a man
lies like a rug!*

Sometimes it starts to seem discouraging to be abused by Gordo and his gang and have that compounded by the loyal(?) opposition's apparent desire to "go along to get along." So when a friend sent the following little joke to me and it made me laugh, I thought it would be nice to share it with my readers. So much else is just too depressing to think about and feel so powerless to affect.


A man died and went to Heaven.

As he stood in front of the Pearly Gates, he saw a huge wall of clocks behind him. He asked, 'What are all those clocks?'

St. Peter answered, 'These are Lie-Clocks. Everyone on earth has a Lie-Clock. Every time you lie, the hands on your clock move.'

'Oh', said the man. 'Whose clock is that?'

'That's Mother Teresa's', replied St. Peter.. 'The hands have never moved, indicating that she never told a lie.'

'Incredible', said the man. 'And whose clock is that one?'

St. Peter responded, 'that's Abraham Lincoln's clock: the hands have moved twice, telling us that Abraham told only two lies in his entire life.'

'Where's Brian Mulroney's clock?' Asked the man..

St Peter replied, Jesus has it in his office. He uses it as a ceiling fan.

*thanks to Foth for the "jaw" image and to The non conformer’s Canadian Weblog for the illustration

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Monday, July 06, 2009

We Have An

da Capo

Obfuscator in Chief

The Opposition Speaks!

BC Mary continues to have problems accessing the Legislature Raids, as a visitor or as the boss. So she forwarded some information to me in case I could post some of it, rather than just giving up, as logical as that may seem at times. Confronted with the ongoing criminality, obfuscation and especially galling, the apparent either complicity or lack of concern by the Loyal(?) Opposition, it becomes tempting to throw up one's hands and become another "What Me Worry" person. I can't help but entertain the notion, that as bad as things may be for the average British Columbian, they are still good enough for opposition party members that they don't really want to rock the boat. I can't help but suspect there may be far too much of the attitude "Go along to get along" going around!

The latest "bombshell" re: the BC Rail travesty seems to be that we are all crazy, the deal isn't secret and has been completely public for the last five years. Added to this is the notion that since the deal has been public and uncontested for five long years it must be perfectly legit. Now this really conflicts with my recollection of what I naturally assumed was reality, and it makes even the koot consider not bothering to even care anymore. But then that would be the perfect strategy for the cabal we know as the Campbell Gang to undertake, wouldn't it?

Mary recently received the following from one of the research assistants at Opposition HQ:
Hello Mary, I understand that you emailed asking for the BC Rail sale contracts .

Here are the links to the 2 agreements: the "Transaction Agreement" (the outright sale which the government rebrands on the link as the "Investment Partnership Agreement") and the "Revitalization Agreement or 990 year lease portion of the deal:

(altho the research assistant refers to TWO links in the paragraph above, only one is provided and the koot has no idea what's going on with that....koot)

(FYI, there was also a third agreement called the Consent Agreement that came out when the federal Competition Bureau signed off on the deal on July 2, 2004 but it is not on this provincial website.)

You can also access the 2 main agreements on the Legislative Library website:

The Transaction Agreement:

The Revitalization Agreement:

The Campbell government only released these publicly under pressure/in response to our FOI back in 2004, and then posted them in their heavily severed version on the website.

We continue to push the government to come clean on the deal they gave CN and release the full text of the agreements.

So that last sentence kinda forces me to ask yet again - IS THE AGREEMENT REALLY PUBLIC - OR NOT? I assume by "severed version" the r.a. is just trying to use bigger words than necessary and means cut, or more accurately perhaps "redacted," but then again, I can't even figure out what the loyal opposition opposes!

crossposted at The Legislature Raids

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Thursday, July 02, 2009

Dear Mr. Krog
Dear Mr. Krog!

For those of you who may not have already read this at The Legislature Raids, or BC Mary's place, here is a copy of the letter I sent this morning primarily to Leonard Krog with copies to my local MLA, the MLA who now represents part of my old riding prior to the most recent exercise in gerrymandering, and the Queen of Uselessness herself Carole James. So far the only response has been the instantaneous (before I could get back to my inbox) AUTO-REPLY from Queen Carole. My ALMOST instant reply to that is below the original letter.

The question of the day might be - Who is the Opposition loyal to and what or who do they even OPPOSE?

To those who are supposed to represent ME,

This letter is primarily addressed to Leonard Krog in his capacity as Justice Critic for the Loyal (to whom?) Opposition. The Attorney General of the Gordon Campbell Liberal government is theoretically the peoples' advocate, but it has become apparent that Wally Oppal was more of a personal counsel to Mr. Campbell and I expect the same or worse from Mr. DeJong. Therefore the only person who could possibly represent the "legal" interests of the people of BC, unable to afford to hire their own "personal" representation, must be Mr. Krog.

We citizens of this province are at a disadvantage in even understanding the BC Rail deal and the amazing combination of a Kabuki Play and Ptomkin Village that is the still not underway BC Rail Trial - officially known as HMTQ v. Basi, Basi and Virk. With the ongoing apparent collusion of the RCMP, the Can West/Global exuses for a media, the awesome power of the Public Affairs Bureau (which seems to consist of more and better paid [by us] journalists and media manipulators than the entire press of British Columbia) and the apparent obstruction of justice and refusal to comply with disclosure by the Premier's Office of Gordon Campbell the citizens of British Columbia have little recourse other than to DEMAND that Mr. Krog apply for an injunction to prevent any more transfer of assets to Canadian National until the following has been complied with in regards to the STILL SECRET transfer of BC Rail to CN:

We want you Mr. Krog to immediately ask for an injunction halting the BC Rail secret deal until the following conditions are met:

* open the secret agreement for people to see,
* stop the release of further gifts to CN,
* give people time to study the agreement and decide on the options,
* freeze the agreement until it can be shown that it was legally negotiated, and it is proven that no wrongful criminal acts formed part of the negotiation.
* Insure that CN has itself complied with the terms of the deal applicable to them selves (for example rumor has it that 600 new rail cars were to be provided and have not been)

The current government has been conducting a fire sale of assets to its corporate "friends" for eight years and undoubtably will try to sell off or give away everything left in the next four years. However right now this injunction is the number one priority for an opposition worthy of its name, as it seems that CN will receive more goodies like miles of water front real estate from North Vancouver to Squamish for a DOLLAR and also be free of accountability for their pitiful operation of the railroad itself and possible failure to live up to the terms of the deal.

Perhaps these are just rumors - MAKING THE DEAL PUBLIC WOULD CLEAR THIS UP! If Mr. Campbell continues to refuse to share with his constituents the terms of this supposedly wonderful deal for BC, one can only surmise that there are reasons why!

I live in solid NDP territory both federally and locally, but even here more and more life time NDP members are considering another political alternative that isn't the BC Liberals, Greens or the current version of the NDP. This is not a threat, it is just the reality and a sign of the disappointment we have suffered as a result of watching Gordon Campbell spend eight years destroying what was truly once the "Best Place on Earth" with hardly a question from the opposition since it grew larger than just Jenny and Joy!


Injunctions are not only meant to be used against the people and their interests in the common good!

Canada under Harper and BC suffering under Campbell are like the last standing stubborn remnants of a now almost totally discredited world view represented by Thatcherism, Reaganism, Pinochet and such and if anyone should see this and fight against it, one would expect it to be the party descended from the CCF and Tommy Douglas - remember who your party is (or was) supposed to be and whom it IS supposed to represent, PLEASE!

of the House of Infamy

On Jul 2, 2009, at 1:19 PM, master troll wrote:


AUTO-REPLY isn't good enough - you and your party have to DO SOMETHING about this outrage known as the Super Secret BC Rail Giveaway NOW!


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