Friday, May 29, 2009
BC Rail: this botched, pathetic trial
Basketball is a game I never enjoyed, either as a player or spectator. It's a frustrating, stupid game about thwarting and being thwarted. No grand whacks, as in tennis or golf or baseball. No crossing the line to the roar of the crowd, like a runner or soccer player. Not even a ka-sloonk for a hockey puck slapped into the net. No, basketball is all about preventing the other team from functioning to the best of their ability ... about thwarting every attempt to score a point. About thwarting or being thwarted. And it's the same with HMTQ vs Basi, Virk, Basi.
This trial was supposed to begin on June 6, 2006 ... and that's why The Legislature Raids was launched ... because we could already see that the CanWest media had decided to shield their premier by not providing adequate news coverage. We could see the thwarting even then. Thing is, we really couldn't quite believe it because doesn't that kind of shielding mean an implied guilt?
Now ... in the hours following the latest CanWest election ... we're only beginning to understand. Madam Justice Bennett may be removed from the Basi Virk trial. True, she applied to become a judge in the B.C. Appeal Courts but that doesn't mean she must automatically abandon the 3+ years of pre-trial hearings she's already considered. In fact, Justice Bennett says she's OK with staying on the case. But guess who's thwarting that? Our very own Crown Prosecutor, Bill Berardino! Ol' Bill, showing signs of life at last, says he wants the presiding judge to just move along, like now, like pronto! like yesterday! He wants a new judge to start all over from the beginning!
It's the Defence team that's beginning to feel like the Home Team at this point. The Basi Virk defence team wants Judge Bennett to stay on the job. I imagine the public wants Judge Bennett to stay on the job. We're beginning to get the picture.
In recent days, at long last, CanWest's own personal premier is being called upon to testify. There's nobody left, apparently, who still believes that Gordo didn't decide to get rid of BC Rail, didn't agree the terms, didn't meet with the CEOs of major railroads, and isn't famous for micro-managing every detail of every decision made by his government from June 2001 onward. Gordo is King of Thwarts.
Now Gordo's 2001-2004 Minister of Transportation, has disappeared. She knows pretty much all about the BC Rail deal. Judith Reid is wanted by the Defence as witness but, says our Crown Prosecutor, she's nowhere to be found. Nope, not even a skip-tracer can find her, reports The Globe and Mail on May 28, 2009. Sure. Try another one. We aren't the dumb kids we were 5 years ago. Look and see if she voted on May 12, 2009; and where she voted.
July 14, 2009, is the 5-year anniversary of signing the deal between BCRail and CN. At least, we think it is. The deal is still secret. No Minutes exist which would seal the BC Rail deal. Nothing. [Hansard for March 3, 2004] Another miracle by the King of Thwart. It means that British Columbians don't really know what's been signed away or what BC's rights are. One rumour says we lose control of priceless BC Rail waterfront lands on the 5th anniversary ... lands which go to CN for $1.
I've never cared much whether Basi, Virk, or Basi are guilty or innocent of the charges made against them. But it did seem to me, right from the day the police raided the B.C. Legislature that the police investigation -- and then the charges -- were possibly reflective of Campbell's governing style. Seemed important for the public to understand how something so huge as Canada's 3rd largest railway could slip out of our hands, just like that. And that's the very thing we still don't know -- and the thing which neither the Crown Prosecutor nor the Campbell government seem willing to allow us find out. The very thing that a premier should want to find out. But no. Thwart, thwart, thwart.
If you ask me, the Crown Prosecutor -- who often didn't bother to show up in the early pre-trial hearings -- is quite satisfied with the delays. If you ask me, he could have found a way to resolve the secret witness issue without the expense and delay of going to BC Court of Appeal and then Supreme Court of Canada. If you ask me, Ol' Bill could have got this show on the road approx. 3 years ago. I bet the King of Thwarts doesn't mind these delays.
And what that lousy performance means is that this has become the Basi Virk ball game. There's enough truth they could tell before July 14 to not only set themselves free but make themselves B.C. heroes. Will that day come soon enough? Or will the Home Team find yet another way to thwart the whole process?
In the long run, HMTQ v. Basi Virk Basi will more appropriately be named the BC Rail Case. And BC Rail used to mean the people of British Columbia ... our railway ... hauling our forest, mine, and farm products. So where does this botched, pathetic trial leave the public? We're the ones being thwarted everywhichway in this ballgame ... and the next election, by some miracle of micro-management, is now 4 years away. Thwart, thwart, thwart. - BC Mary.
Seems like there's nobody in charge. At least, nobody that can be named.
Great post Mary!
By the way,in conversation recently, someone asked me how much this entire game of thwart has cost British Columbians to date - would you happen to have any figures on that?
It would seem to be in publics best interest for the government members to anty up as fast as possible with the economy the way it's heading. Especially if Good King Gordo wishes to maintain any charade of his deficit( deceit) target.
Others are so much in our faces, we see them in our Liberal biased media all the time.
BCTV, CTV, CannedWaste Van Sun, Van Province who's Stocks are now worthless pieces of paper just like their non-newspapers!
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