I woke up to the news that Jack Layton passed away this morning at the age of 61. This is heart breaking. My heart goes out, first and foremost, to his wife, Olivia Chow, and their children. And it also goes out to our country because we’ve lost a great man today. A man who always fought for what he believed in, who brought so much to politics in Canada. The NDP gained Official Opposition status on the strength of his leadership and vision. He gave so much to this country and, at 61, he had so much left to give. I am deeply, deeply saddened that we will never get to see a Prime Minister Jack Layton.
It seems only appropriate that after a week of sunshine, and before another week of sunshine, today it rains.
I’m so fucking sick of cancer taking all the good people.
Glen Clark is a controversial guy, as evidenced by the fact that his Wikipedia page is a mess of “this page’s neutrality is disputed” and “you need actual sources to back up this shit, yo.” And since I’m far too lazy to do any real research, take anything I write here with a giant grain of sodium chloride.
1986: elected to the BC Legislature
served as Finance Minister under Premier Mike Harcourt and when Harcourt resigned in 1996, Clark was elected by the NDP to succeed him
1996: Clark won an NDP majority government, did stuff like keeping tuitions fees frozen and something about Vancouver Island and Skytrain
And since BC politics loves scandals, there were two “scandals” during Clark’s reign:
The “Fast Ferries” – some new, faster ferries were built for BC ferries, but they cost way more than expected, took longer than they were supposed to and never quite went as fast as they were supposed to3.
“Casinogate” – Glen Clark’s house and officer were searched by the RCMP in 1999 in relation to accusations that Clark had accepted $10,000 worth of renos in exchange for granting a casino license. He was charged with “breach of trust,” a criminal offence, but in the end was not found guilty. Essentially, the judge said that he’d done something stupid, but not done anything criminal.
Clark resigned as premier in 1999 in light of the “Casinogate” scandal.
currently works as an “Executive Vice President” for the Jim Pattison Group and president of The News Group North America.”
In summary, Glen Clark did some stuff and then people got mad at him and then he quit.
for his mug shot when he got arrested for driving drunk in Hawaii, click here [↩]
Nanaimo a.k.a., “Surrey by the Sea,” and the home of the deliciousness that is the Nanaimo Bar [↩]
if memory serves, they went fast, but then it took a long time to dock them because they didn’t quite match up with the docks correctly, so after all the time and money spent on the new ferries, your ferry trip wasn’t any shorter than it was with the old ferries [↩]
Feb 1996: resigned due to the “Bingogate” scandal (where an NDP party member used money raised for charity to fund the NDP. Though Harcourt wasn’t himself involved, he did the captain going done with the ship thing)
Nov 2002: suffered a spinal cord injury in a near-fatal accident at his cottage. Made a remarkable recovery.
In summary, in my extensive research1, I was not able to any reference to anything that he actually did as Premier. I’m gathering, based on the stuff he’s doing now, that he did something good for cities and sustainability, but I’ll be damned if I can find any information on what he actually did2
Image credits: Photo of Mike Harcourt at Simon Fraser University’s Harbour Centre on June 14, 2007 posted by Richard Eriksson on Flickr.
I mean beyond his National Speaker’s Bureau bio, which says, “focus on conservation and sustainable development – and his resolve to contribute to the transformation of cities and communities around the world” – i.e., doesn’t actually say anything. [↩]
And speaking of the election, I’ve now seen a few lawn signs popping up. Unfortunately, since I live in the riding of an incumbent, who happens to be a Cabinet minister and it happens to be a pretty well-to-do riding1, so I don’t really have a hope in hell that the NDP will win the seat here. But I have at least seen a NDP lawn sign2,3, so at least I know who my NDP candidate is now.
On a related note, I’m still taking suggestions on creative ways to destroy the BC-in-name-only-Liberals brochures I’ve received in the mail. So far the best suggestions I’ve recevied have been to line a cat litter box with them and to blenderize them. I’m leaning towards the latter because, although I do have access to a cat, I really like the cat and wouldn’t want to subject him to looking at that icky brochure, even if it is when he’s taking a poop.
1Note that I am a basement dweller and not someone who even dreams of affording one of the well-to-do homes in this ‘hood. 2On my very own block, no less. 3Have yet to see a Green Party sign though.
Here in BC, we are just a few months away from a provincial election. Being TV-less, I haven’t seen the original ads, but apparently there are pro-Liberal*1 ads being run under the name “Vote Smart BC.” And here, I’m providing you with the NDPs response to those ads:
We’re exposing the facts about the people behind the Vote Smart BC ads appearing around BC.
The Vote Smart campaign is run by the Independent Contractors and Builders Association, a lobby group that supports the BC Liberals and advocates to keep wages low and laws protecting working people weak.
Voters need to know the truth – and today we are launching a parody of their cartoon ad.
1Just like I put an asterisk next to the word “Tories” for the federal party (because they aren’t real Tories – they are the Reform-party-turned-Canadian-Alliance-who-stole-the-Progressive-Conservative-name), I put an asterisk next to the word “Liberal” for the BC Liberal* Party because they are anything but liberal.2 2Speaking of which – in May, vote Anything But Liberal (ABL)! Read More