Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Gordon Campbell's BC Liberal government imploding with outrageous behaviour

Bill Tieleman's 24 hours column

Tuesday July 22, 2008

The smell of Gordo's demise

By BILL TIELEMAN

A government, for protecting business only, is but a carcass, and soon falls by its own corruption and decay.

- Amos Bronson Alcott, 1799-1888

Snapshots taken of Premier Gordon Campbell's government imploding in just the last few days:

B.C.'s newly-appointed independent auditor-general, John Doyle, who arrived recently from Australia with impeccable credentials, issues a report which Forests Minister Pat Bell calls: "unprofessional ... lacking of integrity ... dead wrong ... neither neutral nor factual ... and totally inappropriate." Welcome to B.C., the best place on earth, you scum.

The reason for the unprecedented attack - Doyle reported that then-forests minister Rich Coleman removed valuable private forest lands from a provincial tree farm licence without fair public consultation or even adequate information.

Doyle said the BC Liberal government move made Western Forest Products 28,000 hectares of land on southern Vancouver Island suddenly worth $150 million.

Doyle also noted that Western Forest Products had given $60,470 to the BC Liberal Party between 2005 and 2007. He was too polite - but I'm not - to mention the more than $56,000 Western also gave the Liberals between 1996 and 2004.

Then there's the six senior BC Liberal government bureaucrats each raking in more than half a million dollars a year.

And amazingly Vic Poleschuk - fired as head of the BC Lottery Corporation after many Lotto dealers were found to be winning big prizes against all odds - takes home an estimated jackpot of $929,000 in pay and severance!

Speaking of scratch and win, ICBC managers - under the watchful eye of their now- departed CEO and ex-deputy finance minister Paul Taylor ran a sophisticated "chop-shop" where nearly 100 cars written off in accidents were repaired in an ICBC facility and sold to unsuspecting buyers with no warning of previous damage.

Other cars in better shape were fixed and sold to employees in rigged auctions. And government-owned ICBC won't even say if anyone was disciplined or fired for the fiasco!

Don't worry if we can afford all this - B.C. has a $2.9 billion surplus! That's $2.9 billion in health care, education and social assistance we apparently don't even need. No seniors in linen closets in our hospitals!

But Campbell has sympathy for those facing hard times. The premier privately told RCMP management he wanted to support the four officers who Tasered Polish immigrant Robert Dziekanski 24 seconds after confronting the distraught man, who died moments later at Vancouver Airport.

"Gordon Campbell's B.C. government, now seven years old and showing serious signs of rot," writes the usually supportive National Post newspaper, while the Campbell-backing Vancouver Sun denounces his "cabal approach to government."

When even your friends want to throw you out, it's time to consider whether your political expiry date is coming due sooner than expected.


That might explain the smell.

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

Premier Norman Bates and his Victoria Motel full of neo-cons are starting to sink the way Rita Johnson and her Socred Victory Team went down by the bow in 1990.

The GREAT SATAN

Anonymous said...

In the CBC report John Doyle said:

"The terms of each licence agreement differed, but in many instances the licensee was required by the government to include private land. Recent legislative changes allow licensees to more easily remove their private land from a tree farm licence, and from forestry use altogether."

***************************

This is a foolish question I'm about to ask, but here goes anyway.........the legislative changes that the BC Liberals made to cover private forest land being removed from the tree license, did it include an amendment that would allow Agricultural Land Commission properties that once was used only for growing animal feed and/or human consumption food, which has since been converted to growing TREES, may these new tree licensed properties, under the ALC, be removed altogether and used by developers just like Rich Coleman permitted during his Watch?

That's one small step for a land developer man, one giant leap for the bottom line" slightly paraphrased

North Van's Grumps said...

In the CBC report John Doyle said:

"The terms of each licence agreement differed, but in many instances the licensee was required by the government to include private land. Recent legislative changes allow licensees to more easily remove their private land from a tree farm licence, and from forestry use altogether."

***************************

This is a foolish question I'm about to ask, but here goes anyway.........the legislative changes that the BC Liberals made to cover private forest land being removed from the tree license, did it include an amendment that would allow Agricultural Land Commission properties that once was used only for growing animal feed and/or human consumption food, which has since been converted to growing TREES, may these new tree licensed properties, under the ALC, be removed altogether and used by developers just like Rich Coleman permitted during his Watch?

That's one small step for a land developer man, one giant leap for the bottom line" slightly paraphrased

Anonymous said...

If Gordon Campbell's political career does not go down with scandal, he'll be the first elected BC premier to do so in over 20 years. Bill Bennett was the last elected premier to leave office without being forced out by scandals.

DPL said...

The actions of this government shows the lack of compassion for poor, unhoused citizens. It tends to sicken some of us but many just don't give a damn so the government just keeps doing what they are doing. Some business folks are getting concerned which might sway King Gordo and team. What a heatless bunch. Folks talk about the bad old days under the NDP( they really were not bad at all)The poor got fed and the hospitals worked and still they managed balanced budgets while the Asian burn out was happening. So while all this is going on Gordo sends us a cheque wich is our money in the first place. What will he sell next? He must be running out of resources or drilling permits soon.

tinaz said...

What happened to John Les? Was he not being investigated for allegations of improper land deals?

The BC Liberals have done a lot of damage to this province and it's time we ask for Gordon Campbell to resign.

Perhaps he should go visit former Finance Minister Carole Taylor at her beach house in Southern California. I'm sure they would have lots to talk about and who knows Les may be staying with Carole and her husband!

Budd Campbell said...

The National Post story was a surprise to me and to many. The paper is on the right, and for them to turn thumbs down on Campbellism is like the BC Fed saying, "The NDP needs another term in Opposition".

kootcoot said...

"Doyle also noted that Western Forest Products had given $60,470 to the BC Liberal Party between 2005 and 2007. He was too polite - but I'm not - to mention the more than $56,000 Western also gave the Liberals between 1996 and 2004."

Bill are you too polite to mention the executive position held with TimberWest by Thug Rich Coleman's brother, or am I confused?

"Don't worry if we can afford all this - B.C. has a $2.9 billion surplus! That's $2.9 billion in health care, education and social assistance we apparently don't even need. No seniors in linen closets in our hospitals"

I guess being warehoused in a linen closet is better than dying in the wait line, waiting for a linen closet or boiler room to become available. Your short statement quoted above is very well put, Bill!

Surplus, SmurfPlus, government budgets and financial statements are like magic beans and generally just another way to blow smoke up everybody's backsides.

Anonymous said...

The pay offs to "freinds and insiders" have been going on since 2001. Look at the ICBA inspired changes to apprenticeship or the Small Business Coalition changes to the Labour Code and the Employment Standards Act. Who owns and/or is constructing these private hydro developments and are there not $$ flowing back to the party in power?

It would be a very long list if all of the pay backs were recorded.

kootcoot said...

By the way Bill, do you still not at least entertain the notion that Elizabeth Bennett herself might be part of the problem with the BC Rail Trial?

The presiding judge in any trial does have various means to encourage prompt compliance with her orders. She can make "orders" and not just kinda polite requests.

Anonymous said...

"By the insidious technique of propaganda by omission, the public has been manipulated into a state approaching criminal obliviousness."

Phil Rockstroh: Ebullient Skepticism

Dawn Steele said...

How about the news just out today about Campbell's secretive & gutless back-room decision to deny provincial supports to young adults with severe developmental disabilities like autism and FASD based on an arbitrary and nonsensical IQ limit cutoff?

Rich Coleman admits the move was designed solely to dodge court rulings that the BC Liberals had no authority to arbitrarily deny provincially-funded supports for the developmentally disabled based on IQ alone.

So Campbell resorted to a closed-door Cabinet decision in the dead of summer with no consultation, no discussion, no risk assessment and no announcement - against all advice received from professionals, families and service providers that this is unjust & unreasonable - tantamount to putting people with the functional capacity of 6-year olds out on the street to fend for themselves!

And for what? To save maybe a million a year when we have a budget surplus of $4 billion??!! How is this in the public interest?

Lindsay Kines at the Times Colonist reports today that Minister Christensen stated just months ago that such a response would be the wrong thing to do, but apparently he signed the order anyway to keep his job!

What a joke this makes of the concept of open and accountable government. And it comes right on the heels of another radical backroom decision (no public discussion whatsoever!) to split up & dismantle the disastrous Community Living BC agency that Campbell created with the help of Doug Walls, handing over the adult services for Rich Coleman to finish off in his new Minintry of the disenfranchised & disabled.

Anonymous said...

Reach for your barf bag...

These donations mentioned in the article work out to $1287.88 for each dollar of investment in the party. Great returns for benefactors eh, and about a 29% increase since On The Take was written.

wtf is going on......?

Advocate said...

Rich Coleman's latest blunder is his change to the building code to allow 6 story wood frame condos. This decision has again revealed the campbell government's bias in favor of homebuilders and developers. It has not resolved the leaky condo crisis but is now moving us from 4 story leaky rotten condos to 6 story and potentially leaky rotten condos. It has an HPO board that is made up of building and real estate industry types with no meaningful consumer representation. This has made the HPO a Homebuilder Protection Office rather than the intended Homeowner Protection Office. The government has also ignored the grave concerns of homeowners and its own Minister's past promise to fix BC’s deficient strata property legislation. It has left 600,000 voting strata owners with legislation that supports the real estate and property management industries while ignoring the needs of strata owners. As the government continues to act out its bias, the BC print media virtually ignore consumer protection while engaging in the usual real estate boosterism. With even the NDP opposition remaining silent on these issues the future looks bleak for Bc homeowners.