Tuesday, May 25, 2010

They Said.....We Said....



2:00pm Update.....As GAB points out in the comments, no action with M. Brown before Judge, Jury and the people of British Columbia, today, Tuesday....Why?.....Well, the Third Man, Aneal Basi, is ill......'allegedly'.....Sure hope this isn't a ruse to buy time for the Campbellerians to make like Monty Hall....Sorry to be late with this....Have been stuck in the underground science-geek bunker on Eastern time all day....Very, very anthropomorphically(?!) warm in Montreal today....

RailGate Fo'Real (Day 4) gets underway again today.

And Campbellerian Capo-In-Chief, Martyn Brown, is scheduled to be subjected to even more cross examination.....


Many in the proMedia have made a big fuss about how it is offside for the Defence to focus on the Campbell government's influence-peddling industrial complex instead of staying within the extemely narrow lawn-and-tennis-club confines of the case as outlined by the Prosecution durin its opening statements.

And you won't find a better example of that type of proMedia codswallop than the Globe's editorial from last Thursday. The following is an excerpt, offered-up for puke-inducing illustrative purposes only:

"....In cross-examination of Martyn Brown, Mr. Campbell’s chief of staff, Mr. Virk’s lawyer, Kevin McCullough, has advanced a theory that Mr. Campbell favoured a sale and lease of BC Rail’s assets to Canadian National Railway, and that he wanted to cause BC Rail to lose money, in order to argue for its privatization. If those suggestions were true, they would not add up to a defence, because the allegations against the defendants are about another, unsuccessful bid for BC Rail, by a U.S. company called OmniTRAX Inc.

Similarly, Mr. McCullough’s suggestion that Mr. Campbell’s evolution on the HST resembles his changing position on BC Rail hardly serves as a rational defence. After the B.C. election of 2009, the federal government offered the Ontario and B.C. treasuries financial incentives to adopt a sales tax almost identical to the GST – a far cry from any alleged inducements from a private company to the defendants.

An attempt to treat Mr. Campbell as if he were the principal defendant would be a demagogic abuse of the jury. Mr. McCullough and his colleagues should stick to the issues of the case."

Luckily for us, but perhaps not for the fine folks at BellGlobeTSNRDSCTVCHUMEverythingElseImaginableMedia, they made an exception and left the comment threads open on this one.

And there are many fine, informed, eloquent and forceful responses there that take the Globe and the other proMeds to task and demonstrate precisely why Mr. McCullough's approach is, in fact, appropriate from a legal defense point of view also.

My favourite comment in this regard so far is this one from Clayton Burns:

The editorial here is not as out of focus as the captions in The Sun and The Province today that misidentify Basi and Virk (despite today's excellent photo in the National Post), but still you have missed something that is very important, and that you should correct. The same goes for Gary Mason's more careful column.

Mason writes in his latest report of "the ever-patient and terrific judge in this case--Anne MacKenzie--" (an opinion I agree with, despite some unfortunate changes of direction re whether documents should be marked).

Therefore, Mr. Mason cannot be confused about what the judge said with great clarity--which Kevin McCullough emphatically agreed with--that what the defence "pit bull" is putting forward is the foundation or the prelude to proof or persuasive evidence. If he fails to follow through, he will have to admit that his questions were "loaded with wild, unsubstantiated allegations and innuendo" (to quote Mason's unqualified and slightly reckless statement).

The judge appears to be taking careful notes. It appears that the columnist Mulgrew from The Sun is also good at taking notes on his laptop. It might be best if some others had a pool arrangement for a super fast and accurate note-taker to get the proceedings down in black and white.

Otherwise, there will be gaps in the coverage, such as the failure to mention that Martyn Brown seemed befuddled as to what to make of the activities of Jamie Elmhirst, Pilothouse Public Affairs, and, more seriously, a loss of refinement when editorial positions are taken.

Fantastic stuff that, no?


What I can't wait to see is how Michael Bolton goes at Mr. Brown when McCullough's finally done. Will Bolton use a velvet glove over a fist of steel, or will he just go all out with an even bigger battering ram than Mr. McCullough's?

Either way, it's going to be interesting, so....

Get the popcorn ready!

And lay off the Bass Ale.

(at least until early afternoon)


Oh, and in case you missed it, what Laila has to say about all this is pretty darned forceful and eloquent also.



North Van's Grumps said...

We've all been cursing the Accreditation for "journalist" process and their right to tape record the inner workings of Courtroom 54, now I find that Ian Mulgrew can have his laptop inside the Main event room.

"... It might be best if some others had a pool arrangement for a super fast and accurate note-taker to get the proceedings down in black and white. "

When I was in Courtroom 54, at the pretrial period, I had trouble hearing what was being said between the close-knit grouping of Lawyers within whispering distance of the Judge, and no one, I repeat NO ONE from the press, whether it was Mark Hume Neal Hall or Ian Mulgrew, all sitting in the rows behind Robin Matthew, had their tape recorders out to copy every word that was spoken. There wasn't even a hint of a lapel microphone button either.

There has to be one source, recording everything that is spoken in Courtroom 54, secreted away somewhere in the bowels of the Court Building itself, an official transcription of what is being said.... why do journalists have access to it alone, and making mistakes in extracting what they think they are hearing on their copy so they can sell their newspapers with the latest gossip?

Why can't the public have access to it as well?

Ian said...

Are the transcripts not available on a daily basis from court services? I haven't been able to check but that should be the case I believe. The rub - there is always a rub - is there may be a charge.

Anonymous said...

Nothing to see today...



Anonymous said...

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