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Wake up and smell the stench coming from the dubious sale of BC Rail – 5 years after the fact

All of the media manipulators in the Ledge must have been rushing to concoct whatever fantastic announcement they could come up with to distract the unsuspecting public from the growing smell coming from the treasures contained within the pages released  by Judge Bennett in the Basi-Virk trial. I’m sure that if it were possible, they would have rather eaten  every single one of  those 8000 pages, piece by piece, rather than let the public see them.

Yes, I noticed a lot of talk in local papers about the RCMP and Dziekanski, and the weather, and the wonderful gang arrests. ( we’ll see how long anyone actually stays off the streets with those cases) But where in the big local papers was any mention of this?

Railgate Bombshell: BC Gov’t Ethics Scorched by Rail Firms

Angry bidders ‘dismayed’ by ‘unfair’ process in $1 billion privatization.

This is the headline from Bill Tielemans article in the Tyee today, covering the implications  of new allegations found in among the 8000 pages of released documents dating back to the period of negotiations in the sale of BC Rail.

Allegations, some say, that may lead one to believe the sale should be declared illegal.  Here is an excerpt of Bill’s article :

” Two major rail companies who dropped out of bidding on the $1 billion privatization of B.C. Rail angrily accused the BC Liberals of leaking vital secrets to the winning competitor and conducting an “unfair” process. The allegations are contained in newly-released confidential government documents dating back to the time of the negotiations in 2003.

Canadian Pacific Railroad stated in a letter to Ken Dobell, Premier Gordon Campbell’s senior deputy minister, that the “actual value of the bids” in the $1 billion privatization of B.C. Rail in 2003 were known by winning bidder Canadian National and others before the B.C. government made its decision.

And Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway dropped out of its role supporting the bid of OmniTRAX, writing in a letter that it was “extremely dismayed with the handling of the B.C. Rail Transaction…. because of the lack of fairness in which the process has been conducted.” That letter was sent to CIBC World Markets managing director Alan Wallace, whose firm handled the B.C. Rail sale for the province.

CPR also dropped out of the bidding before CN was announced as the winner, calling the process “unfair” because it believed the B.C. government had leaked confidential B.C. Rail information to CN, giving that company a clear advantage in preparing its bid.

CN given advantage: CPR

The Nov. 17, 2003, letter from CPR vice-president of strategy and law Marcella Szel to Dobell says that its “market intelligence” showed “that CN was speaking directly to B.C. Rail shippers about their bid, with what we must consider the approval of the [B.C. Rail] Evaluation Committee, since the confidentiality agreement

…….. read the rest of the article here at : http://thetyee.ca/News/2009/03/03/BCRail/ or at Bill’s own website , http://billtieleman.blogspot.com/2009/03/tyee-article-railgate-bombshell-bc-govt.html

It is becoming clear why the Liberals did not want the documents released. One of the commenter’s on the Tyee website sums it  up when he says:

” How about the confidence of the BC people.

It this stuff had been public knowledge before the last provincial election the Liberals would have been gone in 2005.

Let’s just make certain they go to the reward they so richly deserve in 2009.”

I suspect and hope that this is the beginning of the end for Gordon Campbell and his cronies, all of whom are long past their expiry dates, because  the allegations in these documents could mean someone is in breach of trust -which happens to be a criminal offence in Canada. Read the comments below the above article for a full and diverse reaction to this story.

Clearly, it is time  for you and I, the public, to demand some answers from the premier about why this deal was done in the manner it occurred and why – without the media spin, thank you. 

The negotiations leading up to this sale dhad to take place somewhere.  There were many announcements that happened around this time period, and one needs to take a deeper look at the key players, and not so key players, to find the truth.

Remember, your vote has power even as a single vote. A vote for the NDP is a vote against Gordon Campbell.

 

2 Comments »

  1. And let’s not forget it was a drug investigation that lead the cops to all this in the first place. What don’t we know about all that?
    Unbelievably, Gordie and his crew have so raised the bar when it comes to cronyism and the stench of corruption (no mean feat in BC of course) that they deserve to be chucked out just on that and have left me no option but to vote for the Non Democratic Party, something I never thought I’d do.
    Last time I voted for the Greens, figuring the Lieberals would win anyway but perhaps be chastened by a narrower margin. Send them a “shape up or …” message.
    If anything, they’ve been worse in their second term.
    I hope they get buried in May.

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    • Yes,David, many people don’t recall that fact.
      A drug investigation.
      Imagine how a drug investigation could have led to where we are now? I mean, this is the legislature, the crowning glory of our provincial government, and how could there be any possibility of corruption among our politicians? Imagine that.
      Corrupt, lying politicians. In BC.
      My question is, where did all of these BC rail discussions take place? Someone, somewhere , has the missing link.
      In a curious addition,I was looking at the Elections BC website last night after reading the Gazeteers accounting of the donations from CN to the BC liberals.

      Peter Armstrong of Rocky Mountain Vacations has given an awful lot to the BC Liberals as well. And didn’t he get the Whistler line? Hmmmmmm….. Lets go back and take a look at how that came to be….

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