Tuesday, May 27, 2008

BC Liberals outrageous attack on free speech, democracy could pass BC Legislature today - ACT NOW!

Bill Tieleman’s 24 Hours Column

Tuesday May 27, 2008

Bill 42 must be stopped


While banning advertising by concerned citizens and groups, the government gives itself free rein to fill the airwaves and newspapers with 'feel good' advertising promoting itself at public expense and promote itself further with taxpayer-subsidized political contributions.

- Rob Holmes, B.C. Civil Liberties Association president

There are dozens of vital political issues in British Columbia but none are more important than trying to protect citizens' right to democracy and free speech.

Regrettably, the B.C. Liberal government is about to severely restrict both this week by passing Bill 42, the Election Amendment Act.

As previously outlined here, Bill 42 would drastically limit the right of organizations and individuals to advertise about an issue, a political party or a candidate for a full five months before election day - that means starting Dec. 12 of this year.

To get some idea of how extreme this restriction is, consider an important election issue: Premier Gordon Campbell's decision to remove 500 acres of prime farmland from the agricultural land reserve and allow the Tsawwassen First Nation to pave it for Deltaport expansion.

Now presume a group of individuals deeply opposed to losing valuable farmland decides to make it an issue in the premier's riding of Vancouver-Point Grey and is willing spend its own money to do so.

Next, look at the physical size of this newspaper column.

For the entire five-month period from Dec. 12, 2008 to voting day on May 12, 2009 that group could sponsor in 24 hours newspaper exactly one ad slightly larger than this column.

A single ad, run once and that's it, because the limit on spending per riding by a third-party group is just $3,000 - enough for a modest ad.

That's a totally outrageous restriction on free speech and democracy.

But unless you and others do something about it - today - Bill 42 could be passed into law as soon as this afternoon and no later than Thursday.

Fortunately, the growing opposition to Bill 42 includes the B.C. Federation of Labour, the Vancouver Sun and the Globe and Mail newspapers, the B.C. Civil Liberties Association, unions and business groups.

Even some traditional B.C. Liberal supporters are expressing their concern, including Philip Hochstein, president of the Independent Contractors and Businesses Association, and 24 hours columnist Erin Airton.

You can add your voice by going to a special website to send an e-mail expressing your opposition to Premier Gordon Campbell, Attorney-General Wally Oppal, NDP Opposition Leader Carole James - who is fighting Bill 42 - and your local MLA at: www.justshutupbc.com

If you care about democracy, free speech and your right to exercise both of them, go there immediately and be heard - before it's too late.

NEWS FLASH! - Attorney-General Wally Oppal today tabled amendments to the Act.

The Vancouver Sun has just reported: "The amendments shorten the time period that will limit spending by political parties, candidates and third parties; and will lower the amount political parties can spend in the pre-writ period, according to the news release."

"The time period limiting third-party advertising spending will be cut from 120 to 60 days, prior to the start of the campaign, plus the 28-day campaign period itself, while the time limits regulating spending for political parties and candidates will also be cut in half from 120 to 60 days prior to the writ being dropped."

"Although there will be no changes in the amount third parties and candidates can spend within those time limits, the amendments will reduce the amount political parties can spend in the pre-writ period from $2.2 to $1.1 million. This change is aimed at reducing the gap between what political parties can spend and what third parties are able to spend."


Anonymous said...

I am not a voter yet - but please people / someone stop this - I dont want to emmigrate again - I came here for free speech - this is scandalous! Liberals not living to their name. Maybe the adverts touched a real nerve. I used to be a Liberal supporter - not if this goes thru

Anonymous said...

Mr. Tielman--The asper family(canwest global) donated 50.000.00 to campbell party in 2005-- Canwest global has been propping up the bc fiberals!
This attack on the press will be campbells fatal flaw!

Campbell just shit on his freinds at canwest global all for the sake of his politcal agenda, you cannot unring that bell!
Money has no political stripe(canwest is furious,what next? No advertising at all unless approved by goverment!)
Do you hear that bill T ---The sound of a thousand campbell stories getting the dust blown off them, " Hell have no fury like a woman scorned (or a frenzied media)"

Anonymous said...

Great idea, Bill. For further coverage, send it over to BC Mary.

BC Mary said...


It's time you started a blog of your own.


Anonymous said...

Flagpole Wally? I was sort of getting use to Stone-Wally, but on second thought the essence of the former appeal judge has been constant from the ouset of his having assumed the position, not the role, of being the Attorney General of British Columbia. He is supposed to be independent, much like his Prosecutors, not answerable to the public....as an MLA, yes, at the voting booth... but not becoming involved in something so insidious has to take away the right of freedom of speech. To be heard by the public, from the public, in his "court room" when he seeks a second term as an MLA. Will his gag law spill over into the real court room..... but of course that has already started to happen in two cases.

May I vote now, here on this blog, with a loosely worded question regarding the use of Wally's "flag" to wrap his damn BC Liberal party up in it, unceremoniously, no fanfare, just on this one issue of his attack on freedom of speech, putting aside his constant stone wall comments in the legislature due to all the criminal investigations?

Anonymous said...

Bill, I cant for the life of me see the connection to this story and some poster saying I should start a blog of my own. I have no desire to start a blog and certianly have no desire to add to her's. She only puts up comments that suite her. Sorry be off topic.

One hopes you trip east was beneficial to you.
I have been watching question period and the way Old Wally was trying to defend the undefendable. The court will, as so may qualified folks have said, will fling this legislation and we will pay. The idea is that only Campell lovers should be allowed to vote Only in BC you might say!!!

Anonymous said...

Public opinion seems to have greased Wally's flagpole, albeit not enough. A free pass on the upcoming budget certainly raises more than a few concerns and makes me wretch with disgust at the hypocrisy of this heap of bull emissions in the first place.

Anonymous said...

To solve in part this problem please ask the owners of 24 and other neswmedia to lower the costs of publishing these types of adds between Dec 2008 and May 2009. This will be viewed as a service to society, freedom and democracy.

Anonymous said...

Is there any truth to the rumor that two BC civil liberties lawyers intercepted a websit, filled it with hate proaganda all for the sake of entrapment? If so, would they be on the campbell/coleman payroll?

Anonymous said...

To Canwest, ignorance is bliss. They will pass up ad revenue from rights asserters, rather than sacrifice elite interests. Witness their pathetic coverage of Oppal's shield of prosecutors from disclosure in the Lee/Davies (Frank Paul Inquiry) process. I have attended about half of the proceedings, and it is clear that Wally asked his attornies - Peck and Daoust (for the ex-prosecutors; now judges) - to wrap concealment of misconduct, in the Charter. They need Justice Melnick - who has manifest a past narrow view to Section 7 (Charter) applications - to find some public benefit in non-compellability of prosecutors, whose exercise of discretion is in question. Melnick took copious notes during the Oppal side presentation, while he barely noted attorney Kelleher, for the Inquiry.

Please take a look at the attached Provincial Court case.

Do you feel prosecutors act in your interest when they register charges in cases like this? Are Crowns really applying "substantial likelihood or conviction" - viz charge approval - or deferring to bad faith conduct of cops?

Re starting-a-website: I am starting one to present hundreds of cases where determinations did not follow law or facts. Example: of over 20 cases involving convictions of cops, in ZERO of said cases did the investigation of same begin on the basis of a victim complaint. Said convictions have a Show Trial quality to them.

Anonymous said...

HE WHO WILL BE KING has already let his Cabinet know of his new policy. It's called SHUT UP.

Now the rest of us are supposed to do the same. But we won't. We've enough internet connections to raise hell forever and ever, amen.

Anonymous said...

HE WHO WILL BE KING has already let his Cabinet know of his new policy. It's called SHUT UP.

Now the rest of us are supposed to do the same. But we won't. We've enough internet connections to raise hell forever and ever, amen.

BC Mary said...

Anonymous 9:23,

What is the name of your blog?

It should prove to be very interesting and I wish you good luck with it.


Anonymous said...

To: Respected
Bill and Prime Minister Stephen Harper

Would you please stop attacking the poor Chinese over Tibet, they have already suffered from a devastating earthquake disaster in mankind history
and instead will you guys focus on the recent bloody inhumane crackdown on peaceful demonstrators
in South Korea over Mad Cow B.S.E., FTA (Free Trade Agreement) and other issue by the military police..
I can tell you democracy there is officially dead. because Lee Myung Bak is actually Japanese, born in Osaka. given the historical differences and conflicts between Japan and Korea. this is virtually not possible..
In fact, it is illegal for him to sacrifice our democracy and rights (South Korea is not Burma, Cuba or North Korea but yet South Korea police is like Junta)
Please watch the related videos

The Grand Korean Waterway, privatization of health care, allowance of dual nationality, whitewashing the Japanese Occupation of Korea, giving up Dokdo islands, suppression of the press,...
Is this the democracy and country that we have longed craved for, and yet history is repeating itself.

Therefore I plead you and the Canadian government to help us by not supporting this Korean government, until Lee gets impeached or removed from power (hopefully) one day. I think he is too dangerous. Thank you for your attention

Anonymous said...

Stripped of social programs, health system destroyed, seniors programs destroyed, homelessness doubles, WorkSafeBC mysteriously loses the term Workers' Compensation (I suppose because they don't pay it anymore, just an opinion), billions of dollars of cost over runs associated with the Olympics, building bridges, when we should be concentrating on mass transit (that actually works), ironically this would outwardly appear to fit with Campbell's "Green" goals, however it appears to have been overlooked as a possible solution.

The use of foreign companys for the building of the ferries (a German company which built U-boats for the Nazi's, used to kill our family members during WWII, I personally find this despicable). Again the use of a German company to build our bridges, the very same company which built Hitler's internment camps (this is unacceptable on any level), I don't care if it is 60 years later, these companys grew because of this work.

In the 1930's Adolph Hitler banned certain people from the games and even appearing in public, they were moved away from the Olympic sites, so as not to be seen. Campbell's plan to house the homeless out of sight, sounds a bit too similiar to me.

Hitler's purpose of the 1936 Olympics, to show off Germany to the world. Campbell's purpose of the 2010 Olympics to show that BC is "the best place on earth". Frightening similiarities, yet again.

In 1939, 3 years following the Olympic games Hitler invaded Poland. I cannot help but wonder if Campbell has plans of invading someone in 2013?

While this may seem a somewhat harsh assessment of Campbell and his Government (well actually it's just Campbell, as I do not think he listens to anyone), I truly beleive that all British Columbians need to take a long hard look at what Campbell has done to BC, it is not a pretty sight, and it is only going to get worse.

Anyone who beleives that Campbell is doing a good job, and votes for him next election deserves what they get, unforunately those of us who see him for what he really is, a man who's only goal is his own personal legacy, will be forced to suffer the consequences, in silence, as trying to talk to him is a complete lost cause.

I do not expect this to be published, as everything I have written in the past to a multitude of Newspapers and Television Networks, never do, but none the less, I will continue to write, you just never know.

Anonymous said...

Just another bill preposed by big brother demacratic fasicts to silence us all who oppose the NEW WORLD ORDER and the NORTH AMERICAN UNION we must oppose all of this draconian laws