Friday, May 21, 2010

Bob from Burnaby, you'll be the first caller

[B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell's chief of staff Martyn Brown] also denied ever encouraging Basi and Virk to call in to radio talk shows and lob "softball questions" to the premier and other Liberal politicians. He said he encouraged ministerial assistants to get others to call talk shows.

"I think it's a perfectly acceptable and long-standing political practice in B.C.," Brown testified.

. . . The court heard how Virk often called radio talk shows when Liberal politicians were guests and identified himself as "Bob from Burnaby," asking the politicians easy questions.

"It's nothing to be apologizing about," Brown told the court. "It's about getting your message out."

NDP Justice Critic Leonard Krog had this response, but don't expect to read it at Canwest Newspapers:
The suggestion that Mr. Brown is making that all political parties engage in those kinds of political tricks with paid government, taxpayer funded, staff is just patently false.
Referring to not officially accredited Supreme Court reporter Mark Hume's article at the Globe & Mail, Alexandra Morton notes:
. . . there are allegations arising in BC Supreme Court that the Campbell BC Liberal government paid people to support salmon farms at a protest rally in Victoria several years ago.

If it is true, there is no reason to expect the salmon farming issue to ever be resolved.

You might want to contact government and ask if your tax dollars were used in this manner to disrupt a democratic process concerning a public resource.
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  1. Martyn Brown and his boss Premier Gordo protected their boys from the start. They suspended Virk with full pay and dealt a $54,000 severance payment to Basi. No special favors? Ha.

  2. I don't doubt that stacking the phone lines and other with supporters is a longstanding practice - but that doesn't make it acceptable.

    I am tired of governments that are 98% about winning the PR wars and 2% about the public good.



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