Friday, January 22, 2010


Privacy Official sounds urgent alarm

What is Campbell trying to cover up?

Why wasn't another person hired first to replace the Privacy Commissioner before he resigned?

The Basi, Virk, Basi case (BC Rail) is finally going into the actual trial ... the Olympic Games cost overrun must be horrific ... is there something fishy going on?

CBC News - January 22, 2010 

A crisis has been created with the sudden resignation of B.C. Information and Privacy Commissioner David Loukidelis, according to the commission's executive director.

Work at the office of B.C.'s Information and Privacy Commission in Victoria is reported to have ground to a halt after the commissioner resigned suddenly this week.

Privacy Commissioner David Loukidelis resigned unexpectedly Wednesday to take a job as deputy attorney general.

Commission executive director Mary Carlson circulated a letter labelled "extremely urgent" at the B.C. legislature Friday calling for a quick resolution of the situation.

The letter was addressed to the legislature Speaker Bill Barisoff and copied to Premier Gordon Campbell, Opposition Leader Carole James and senior legislative staff.

In the letter, Carlson said she sent an urgent request to Campbell Thursday.

"I wrote to the premier's office to raise this pressing concern," she wrote.

"Despite having attempted to learn if an acting commissioner has been appointed or, if not, when this will occur … this office has received no response."

Work was piling up quickly in the busy commission office, but her hands were tied, according to Carlson.

She said she had received legal advice that the office could not perform its job of reviewing requests for information and could not provide independent oversight for 3,000 public bodies until an appointment is made.

"It has been necessary to suspend the entire operations of the office," Carlson said.

The Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner is independent from government and monitors and enforces British Columbia's Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act and Personal Information Protection Act.


Bene Gesserit wrote: Do a quick google search of "BC Rail scandal" and get a sense of the tip of the iceberg and why David Loukidelis is taking the long walk on a short plank.


Of all the damage the Campbell government has done to BC since taking office, what seems like thousands of years ago, nothing compares to this gambit.

The funny thing is, I thought we could trust Loukidelis as he made judgments that actually went against Campbell at times - it appears that trust was misplaced.

Bloody hell Mary! Is there any hope for BC? Corrupt BC Supreme Court, corrupt RCMP, corrupt government...and corrupt governmental watchdogs watching over corrupt corporations helping to keep them all in power.

I can't even imagine what Loukidelis was offered in order to give up his own integrity...must be pretty huge. At least, that's what I'm seeing here.
Mr.Loukidelis was to retire/leave his post a few years ago, but agreed at that time to stay on for another year. I recall, Loukidelis once saying that, "he has no idea why the government isn't moving on this"... Plus, a few years back, the federal privacy comm., had made a phone call to the BC privacy comm...
Why deputy A/G ? Was this appointed by campbell? If so, it smells like the former privacy comm., has gotten himself into a kettle of fish. With Bob Paulson, now deputy RCMP comm., who a few years back headed up a BC investigation of sex-trafficking, then,Sgt.,Paulson said,"I catch fish,I don't cook 'em"! Paulson as well said in reguards to this particular investigation,"we don't rescue the women because they choose to be prostitutes"! Around this same time,federal liberal
justice minister Irwin Cotler said,(survallence)"cameras from the suspects room,are last to be removed"...
There must be a lot of information requests pending on the Olympics: where all the publicly funded tickets for ICBC, Hydro, etc. are going to go, why the billion dollar RCMP security boondoggle wasn't properly controlled, IntraWest's bancruptcy auction right in the middle of the Olympics, why weather wasn't properly risk assessed, etc.. BC Rail scandal and the Olympic scandals are Mr. Campbell's legacy for years to come. Who do we make an information request to ???? Nobody I guess. What a great place to live !!!
Suddenly the BC government Privacy Office is "quietly" closed, and now there is one less in a long string of Civil Rights protections that have been eroded in Gordon Campbell's neo-con Evil Empire.
This building and its staff actually labeled Top Secret (why have this story in the Vancouver Province newspaper then?) must be Gordon Campbell and VANOC's 2010 Lubyanka.
The big question is, in two months will this operation be shut down or will it stay on under another name to support the Premier's political power?
Astute observation Spectre, of course it will stay on. Once rights are given away for so called security, both are permanently taken. You can bet Campbell is laughing his ass off at the gullibility of so many BC'ers.
Leah ...

I wouldn't be surprised if Gordo is just a leetle bit worried ...

Were you watching him on The National last evening when The Torch arrived in B.C., and CBC caught him saying, about protesters,

"They're always against everything. They're only trying to get attention for themselves."

I had to laugh, just a leetle, myself.
"Who do we make an information request to ???? "

Apparently thanks to the Campbell ideology of outsourcing so many things to US firms, it is often more productive to seek information re: the business of BC through information requests to the appropriate state or federal goverment in the US as has been demonstrated before in some cases, like one that was made through Washington State, yielding info, promptly, that was un-attainable in Victoria.

It is pretty clear that "transparency in government" was only important to CampBull when he was in opposition.
I see your point, Koot, and BC did benefit from being alerted by U.S. Coast Guard about the enormous freighter which had run aground on Mayne Island, a few weeks ago ...

but there's a bald-faced risk involved,

when a sovereign nation has to seek "the truth" from another somewhat competitive sovereign nation,

ya see what I mean?

Now and then I wish that OMNItrax and BNSF railways would help us out with what went on in the rigged bidding on BCRail ...

then I think: heck, they're not apt to look kindly upon citizens who never wanted to sell the publicly-owned railway AT ALL ...

see what I mean?
Re RISU - I've always wondered what happened to the Challenger Map, and have to wonder if this top-secret facility will have another life more accessible to the public once the Games are over. The Challenger was a gift to BC, and was something of a marvel to'da thunk it would have been more appropriate in the new Convention Centre, which for the Games is of course the Media Centre and where it would have been of interest to reporters from around the world (partly giving an idea of the vastness of BC's mountains). I suppose its role at RISU will be to move little battleship icons around for strategic planning....but it's a disappointment that it's now only accessible to security forces.....

There is a typically misleading bit of non-info at the end of the article:

Deployment of U.S. military soldiers and resources from across the border remains a last resort, Mercer says.

“It would have to be a fairly major catastrophic event for American forces to come into Canada,” Mercer says.

Active members of the US armed forces and police perhaps; but isn't it common knowledge that the private security contractors providing extra staffing for the Games are mostly American (despite some Canadians from other provinces).

Besides, if something truly catastrophic like a 7.0 earthquake were to happen, US forces would be far too busy and obligated on their side of the border to be able to help us out. And given such a quake, Richmond will have slipped into the bottom of the Strait of Georgia, taking the RISU with it....
I'll be phoning the OIPC office on Monday, because on January 6 I was told that the "order" for the inquiry into my own FOI case was "being drafted". Carlson's letter (3rd last paragraph) lists issuing orders as one of several activities suspended.

This latest development raises a number of new questions, but I don't want to jump to conclusions. Carlson's letter though looks like it was written in haste and I'm rather skeptical about her claim that the OIPC can do nothing without a designated Commissioner or Acting Commissioner. Nevertheless, I believe it is clearly an issue that falls within the mandate of the Speaker of the House and he (not the Premier) should deal with it promptly.

On the other issue, if Loukidelis deserved the reputation he had apparently earned as Commissioner, then I would think that he's been enticed to make this move because he believes it will serve the public interest. However, he wouldn't be the first high profile person seduced into serving Gordon Campbell's personal political ends.

The Ministry of A.G. is a huge problem, and I believe if it isn't addressed it will prove to be an increasingly costly liability for the government. But, even if Campbell himself has begun to appreciate that, his record is not one of carefully considered strategies, but of rashly executed tactical moves.

It's going to be most interesting to see how this whole affair plays out.
Chris Budgell,

Thanks for this news ... we'll be watching with interest,

and wishing you luck.

What I can't figure is why Loukidelis is choosing to stay on past his retirement knowing better than most people, that he was stepping deeper into ... um, er ... developments. I mean, why didn't he wait a few months and retire gracefully, reputation intact ... ??

As you say, it will be most interesting to see how this plays out. Brace, brace!
"I see your point, Koot, and BC did benefit from being alerted by U.S. Coast Guard about the enormous freighter which had run aground on Mayne Island, a few weeks ago ...

but there's a bald-faced risk involved,

when a sovereign nation has to seek "the truth" from another somewhat competitive sovereign nation,

ya see what I mean?

I certainly didn't mean to suggest that there wasn't a problem, cuz we could get information easier down in the Empire. I think it is criminal that a citizen of BC is more likely (and cheaper and faster) to get information about what's going on in BC through Washington state or Washington DC, than through Victoria!
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