Wednesday, August 13, 2008


Mr Floatie, secret BCRail informant?

By Iain Hunter
Times Colonist - June 18, 2008

If three B.C. government aides, David and Aneal Basi and Bob Virk, ever get their days in court on charges of corruption in connection with the sale of B.C. Rail in 2003, one of the intriguing questions will be who ratted.

The trial should determine what value, if any, the evidence provided against the three has, but the Crown is doing its damndest to ensure that the identity of "a police informant" is kept secret.

Since the layabouts in the legislative press gallery have seemed unable to out this character by now, I feel bound to reveal those whom I suspect:

Mr. Floatie -- There's no question that in his capacity as Premier Gordon Campbell's chosen adviser on sewage disposal policy, this fellow has had significant ministerial contacts and a penchant for getting to the bottom of things. If something stank about the B.C. Rail deal, he'd have been sure to smell it.

Paul Battershill -- I found it odd that during the police raid on the legislature Victoria's former chief constable wasn't there, standing in the shadows, as his modesty often dictated during major operations of this sort -- such as rousting unhappy people sleeping on the legislative lawns. It's entirely in keeping with that modesty that he should wish his identity kept secret. As chief, what information he had about bribery and corruption in high places would have had considerable influence on the police investigation. Or so one would think.

{Snip} ...

Conrad Black -- He took as his title on assuming a British peerage, Lord Black of Crossharbour. Crossharbour is a stop on the Docklands light railway in London. Conrad Black has always liked trains. It's rumoured that he had a model railway in his offices when he was proprietor of the Daily Telegraph. It's obvious that ownership of B.C. Rail would have given him the beginnings of a CPR-like trans-Canada railway and a bigger place in history than he's likely to have now. For, alas, he seems to have fallen on his Last Spike.

Gordon Campbell -- The premier has to know a bribe when he sees one. All premiers bribe voters with bridges and highways and things at election time, but Campbell hands out cash to First Nations people to get them to ratify treaties and to everyone to make his carbon tax palatable. It's obvious that he'd resent anyone else intruding on his turf.


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