Saturday, May 26, 2007
Back 4th June ... after adjournment
When KootCoot wrote "Hoping U're OK?" it seemed time to explain. But nothing much to explain, really. The Legislature Raids blog went quiet when BC Mary took the long May weekend off to visit a quiet part of the Canadian landscape ... and noticed something. Who says that blogging isn't like traveling the world? Running TLR blog has been exactly like embarking on a long flight to England or Australia, strapped into a supposedly comfortable seat for 8, 10, 12, or 15 hours. Well, BC Mary has been doing that every day since last September -- not just searching for what my astute readers might want to see posted, but there's also the pre-post reading and corresponding behind the scenes which is often so fascinating I forget to move around. Like, the dialogue between Gary Mason and me, for example. And the many kindnesses (you'd be surprised!) from working journalists as well as others. But ...
After getting home on May 22nd and checking the newspapers for any indication that CanWest is giving thoughtful consideration to The B.C. Rail Trial Thus Far [cue the maniacal laughter], I decided that TLR blog might take an extended rest, too, for the duration of the adjournment.
So I'll be back on 4 June 2007 with, I hope and pray, news that Madam Justice Elizabeth Bennett has made her momentous decision and rules that yes, the trial of Dave Basi, Bobby Virk, and Aneal Basi shall proceed.
PS. Last evening I heard some lawyers and journalists in a roundtable discussion on the Canadian justice system (in relation to the Conrad Black trial which is being heard in Chicago, under U.S. law). They were fairly unanimous (even the U.S. guy) in saying that, yes, Canada's trial system is incredibly slow but that it is also remarkably rational and fair. No 100-year sentences here, for example. And (you'll be glad to know) our Disclosure protocols are much fairer to defence than in U.S.A. where big shocks can happen to defence during trials. Clayton Ruby remarked that the only Canadian improvement he could wish for would be to have cameras in the courtrooms, not for every trial but for those having a wide public interest. "Such as," thought BC Mary, "the B.C. Rail trial in which three former, powerful public servants are the accused."
Can't help checking the newspapers ... and thought readers might like this quote from a Victoria Times Colonist editorial comment dated Sunday 27 May 2007 Keep lobbyists in perspective:
" ... Indeed, the trend toward criminalizing political behaviour, now gathering steam in the U.S., is one we should go out of our way to avoid. Far from cleaning up government, it has merely made public office more risky, but scarcely more honourable."
Q: So corruption has reached ... "into all levels of society"??
But hey, here's a thought: why not YOU call the special prosecutor's office, eh? Even if you can tell us whether Ol' Bill picks up the phone himself, that'd be interesting.
I think his absence -- in fact, his virtual disappearance without explanation -- is one of the most curious aspects of this whole affair.
Did you get the feeling that Ol' Bill Berardino is alive and well and actually taking calls now and then?
Huh? So, it's OK to lie like a sidewalk and join the Corruption Is Us Team and break every conceivable law on the books because they are politicians and "public office is risky"?
There's a winning line of logic! What's this writer aiming for, the Political Apologist Pulitzer Prize?
Here is something to ponder re: the Special Prosecutor's role (before we tar & feather 'S.P. Bill' not that I want to make excuses for him or know why he has exited stage left LOL):
It is the role of the RCMP (any police) to hand over all evidence to the Special Prosecutor who is reliant on the police to give full disclosure. Unlike in the US, our Special Prosecutors do not investigate.
Given the cozy political links/cooperation (where there should be NONE) exposed in the public domain re: the Campbell Govt/Party officials & the RCMP - perhaps Special Prosecutor Bill did not get the dicey evidence which implicated the Campbell politicians/aides (maybe Dobell included - this minion is everywhere - 'everywhich way'!) because it was sanitized.
Further, given the direct orders to the RCMP Dep. Comm. Bass that have surfaced in the pre-trial from Solicitor General Coleman's command post, NOT to go to Hawaii to interview Collins etc (perhaps the Prem?) is it a stretch to conclude that the evidence was selectively handed over to the S.P.?
Remember Sgt. Bud Bishop's detailed notes & his personal appearance in the courtroom had not been included in the Raid file - another version had been placed in the file. I doubt Sgt. Bishop wanted his detailed work to be deep sixed, do you?
Maybe, Bill Barardino has been blind sided by evidence that is now surfacing that he has not been given. Hmmmmmmm . . . .
Like you, I surely will continue to ponder the Special Prosecutor's mysterious disappearance. Thanks for the tips.
Given all the niceties and protocols of courts and lawyers, though, I also ponder the abruptness and seeming rudeness of Bill Berardino's lengthy absence without explanation.
I ask myself: is he sick? is he able to continue the Basi Virk trial?
Is he (as you suggest) angry, embarrassed or disgusted?
Maybe this an Act of Civil Disobedience? Like, is he sorta "On Strike"?
I mean, if we need to drum up a new SP, shouldn't we be doing that?
So why oh why doesn't somebody raise the question in Courtroom 54 or in the haha media?
Isn't it, like, "Oh (shrug), not to worry, that's just Ol' Bill again, say no more, say no more!" And isn't that downright rude toward the public and the public interest?
Maybe we're to believe that the BCRail Trial is so insignificant that the Special Prosecutor can just goof off whenever he feels so inclined? Is he goofing off?
Dang right, it's something to think about ... and I'm looking for my crayons, ready to prepare a Missing Persons Bulletin:
Have you seen this man, missing since April ___, last seen in Vancouver Supreme Courtroom 54, behaving like a Special Prosecutor."
Just who would you be referring to Mary? I haven't noticed anybody EVER behaving like a Special Prosecutor in this sad excuse for a trial. Maybe if someone, anyone, started actually well you know......prosecuting, we could get to the bottom of this septic tank that pretends to be a government.
DEFENCE WANTS TO CROSS-EXAMINE SPECIAL PROSECUTOR
Perhaps Mr. Bill is in hiding to avoid being served with a subpoena!
You both gave me my Monday morning smile . . re: "The case of the Missing Special Prosecutor" (sounds like a Nancy Drew mystery LOL). . . What I do know is:
1. The Criminal Justice Branch appoints the Special Prosecutor specifically, the Assistant Dep. Min., presently, Bob Gillen; although not in this post when Bill Barardino was appointed.
2. The police request a S.P. from the Criminal Justice Branch in the first place
3. The senior levels of RCMP are masters of stonewalling from all accounts to date, particularly based on their POLITICAL CONNECTIONS TO THE BC LIBS WHERE POLITICIANS' BEST INTERESTS SEEM TO PREVAIL VS THE PUBLICS.
4. Under Cross examination by the Defense it would be interesting to know if the SP advised the RCMP on certain political aspects of the evidence and/or if the RCMP withheld key evidence from Bill Barardino.
5. In any case, since the S.P. is supposed to be acting in the publics best interests, we are all entitled to know where he is & why he is not prevailing in court. Agreed.
What a profound RELIEF to hear somebody say this right out loud.
Why is it that we have to feel out-of-order asking the simplest questions about the B.C. Rail trial. Like, "Show us the documents?" and "Did you notice the Special Prosecutor is missing?"
I do so hope that (come June 4) Madam Justice Bennett says "Go!" to this trial. Let's get it rolling, get the whole dang business aired, and get it over with.
And then -- no matter what -- a public inquiry.
Those who forget history are condemned to repeat it, goes the saying. Well ... on my "holiday", I am re-reading Judi Tyabji Wilson's book: "Daggers Unsheathed, the political assassination of Glen Clark". I've just come to p. 121 where it says:
"It was March 2, 1999, and the RCMP, led by Officer Bud Bishop, arrived on the premier's doorstep in Vancouver and began a search of his house." Crumbs, I've been thinking that name was familiar. So it's that Bud Bishop! Only this morning, secondlook (above) was saying: "Remember Sgt. Bud Bishop's detailed notes & his personal appearance in the courtroom had not been included in the Raid file - another version had been placed in the file. I doubt Sgt. Bishop wanted his detailed work to be deep sixed, do you?" Yeah. Him. That Bud Bishop.
The book goes on:
"This search was authorized by a warrant issued from the B.C. Supreme Court. The Associate Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, Patrick Dohm, the second most senior judge in B.C., issued the warrant." Yeah. That same Patrick Dohm, who Robin says has issued a Non-Disclose Order on the Basi Virk documents. Same Dohm. Amazing, eh?
And you remember the name of the presiding judge at Glen Clark's trial of the earth-shaking Back Porch? Elizabeth Bennett! Yeah, our own Madam Justice Elizabeth Bennett who is presiding now over the Basi Virk Basi trial.
Small world, or what. Oh. And John Daly was the first journalist in, both times too. Amazing.
There are no coincidences & when there is a pattern of linkages, it is there for a reason. As you point out - the same people pop up repeatedly. The devil IS usually in the details so your perceptions are important to note.
Re: Sgt. Bud Bishop - I have had the opportunity to observe his actions/perspective on another case & was impressed with his integrity.
Please remember that Bishop is a member of the RCMP Commercial Crime Division as a Sgt. under orders from superiors. This Division appears to be partial to the Campbell BC Libs based on a series of detailed connections over the past years that have surfaced.
In both cases, Bishop was part of a team on a file. Inspector DeBruyckere then Sgt., led the team on the Raid file - correct? Inspector DeBruyckere is the brother in law to Kelly Reichart the Lib Executive Director. He has received a promotion. On both files Bishop would not be making the decisions as to the direction of the file as evidence surfaced during the investigations.
The 'kissing cousins' that link the RCMP & the Libs are at a higher strata above Bishop, as high as now Dep. Comm. Bass who had the chat with the Solicitor General's Office when it was suggested that the RCMP NOT go to Hawaii to interview Collins or any other members of 'Team Campbell'.
My point is: anyone who who writes up a "treasure trove" of information in his detailed notes kept in his desk, as it was described by the Defense lawyer doesn't look like he is going with the flow of any political agenda - particularly because those notes were not the same as the ones that were in the file. Why not?
Who did Bishop share his notes with on the file & who decided not to include them as originally written? How high did the decision reach?
It is noteworthy that Sgt. Bishop does not appear to be receiving promotions like other officers that work in Commercial Crime. That speaks volumes in itself does it not?
"There are no coincidences & when there is a pattern of linkages, it is there for a reason. As you point out - the same people pop up repeatedly. The devil IS usually in the details so your perceptions are important to note."
This reminds me how the same slime quiry.rises to the top in Wash DC, like Shooter Cheney and Rumsfeld et. al. who have been committing treason under RePukelican Administrations since Nixon and Ford.
And Mary, sorry to point out that the following as right (not right wing) thinking as it is is kinda irrelevant.
"I do so hope that (come June 4) Madam Justice Bennett says "Go!" to this trial. Let's get it rolling, get the whole dang business aired, and get it over with.
And then -- no matter what -- a public inquiry
What is the point of a public inquiry now that the new "public inquiries act" specifies that the results of such an exercise don't even have to be released to cabinet, much less the ledge or the public.
What good is the Freedom of Information Act when it now costs thousands of dollars to gain access to information that was available in real time, free of charge, online. That is until The Campbell Crime Family "opened" up government. They meant they wanted to open up access to the public's assets to their cronies, I think.
Koot, pay attention. You've been on Walkabout too, haven't you.
Yes, a public inquiry as soon as the Basi Virk Basi trial ends, no matter what the outcome.
I've said this many times and after having watched CanWest using repetition to dull readers' minds I was trying not to do that.
So, yes, have the public inquiry ... then ... THEN do battle (if necessary) to make sure that the proceedings and the findings are made public.
It's more than possible that people would riot in the streets if the findings were sealed ... so
1) get the inquiry
2) hear the inquiry
3) read the findings
because I don't think that dastardly piece of legislation could hold up if the people seriously said otherwise.
So ... are ya on board?
This is just the same old, same old "criminalization of politics" rant of the RightWing Wurlitzer gussied up with different words.
"Loukidelis called for the province's Lobbyist Registration Act to be changed yesterday to remove "stigmatizing" language that makes the business of lobbying look dirty.
"Mike Smyth, May 29
Would "ethically challenged" be more respectful of high level organized crime?
Unfortunately, except for you and I and a few other people, the chance of standing up and fighting for public disclosure is highly unlikely. Most people have no idea what is happening and if told think the messenger is crazy or just say "oh well, what can you do?" And that is the ones that don't still blame every problem today on either Bill Clinton or Glen Clark.
I still remember these reactionary right-wingers at a BBQ, younger than I, blaming Davy Barrett for all that was wrong with BC, IN THE LATE 1980s.
If a Walkabout involves trowels and plants etc., I stand guilty as charged.