Wednesday, June 11, 2014

This Day In Snookland....The-Recuser-In-Chief.



Yesterday we learned that Ms. Clark's former husband, and her former colleague at a public relations firm called Burrard Communications, is deeply involved in the latest Sparkle Pony venture via a syndicate called 'Pacific Futures':

...Another notable participant (in Pacific Futures) is Vice-President Communications and Research Mark Marissen, a longtime Liberal party strategist and public consultation specialist who is also ex-husband of B.C. Premier Christy Clark...

But not to worry, because Ms. Clark really has nothing to do with her Ex and/or his lobby shoppe anymore according to the MoCo:

..."I certainly don't have any business ties or financial ties with my ex-husband, although we do have a child together and share that responsibility," (Premier) Clark said at a press conference Tuesday.

"As premier of the province though, I have another responsibility, and that is to every single British Columbian."

The premier has expressed support in the past for a similar proposal being pitched by newspaper publisher, David Black, which also looks to refine oil in B.C., rather than ship raw Alberta bitumen to Asia...

And, regardless, she's going to recuse herself from this herd of bitumen-smeared Sparkle Ponies which, apparently, is just fine by her Conflict Commissioner:

...B.C. Premier Christy Clark has recused herself from decisions regarding an oil refinery proposal for the province over a potential conflict of interest involving her ex-husband Mark Marissen. (CBC)

Clark said she sought out the opinion of the province's Conflict of Interest Commissioner in, what she called, "an abundance of caution".

"I sought the Conflict Commissioner's guidance and I will continue to seek his guidance," Clark said.

"It is my understanding that this proposal doesn't depend on, or is not linked to, any pipeline proposal...

But, with that as prologue, here is something to consider that was not touched upon in the CBC story above (or any proMedia report on this story that I have read so far).

Which is...

If this venture to 'clean-up' the bitumen by refining it in Prince Rupert was to get big play in, say, the public prints, even if it is not 'linked' to it,  would it not help 'sell' that pipeline thingy that will bring all the dilbit to the coast to the public?

And if that was the (public relations) case, wouldn't such an outcome benefit all of those fine folks at Enbridge?

And didn't Mr. Marissen and his Burrard Communications public relations firm once do a little lobbying for Enbridge?

Why yes, he and his sure did, as the VanObserver's Matthew Millar discovered not long ago:

But just who is this fine fellow by the name of Mr. John Fraser, above, who registered with Mr. Marissen as one of Burrard Communications 'consultants' for Enbridge?

And, as a follow-up, what is the good Mr. Fraser up to now?

Well, Mr. Fraser just happens to be the son of Ms. Clark's current Conflict Commissioner and, currently, he, Mr. Fraser the younger, is employed by The-Recuser-In-Chief, on our dime, as an Assistant Deputy Minister in charge of her 'Strategic Planning Team' as Kai Nagata has noted.

All of which brings me to my real question....

Given all of this (i.e. who is connected to whom and who may benefit from any and all Sparkle Pony initiatives involving the moving and/or processing of dilbit to and/or at the coast ), why the heckfire didn't the Conflict Commissioner 'recuse' himself from giving the Recuser-In-Chief herself advice on this matter?


Personally, I am flummoxed by the fact that this 'recusing' business has been going on since the days that the BC Rail deal went down.

Which, finally, brings me to a screed I wrote not long ago the details of a specific job Ms. Clark got before she became Premier, apparently at least in part, because of her  Burrard Comm connections surfaced in a(n only) slightly different context:


Protestations from Ms. Clark herself, and from Mr. Marissen also, about Ms. Clark's lack of direct involvement with various companies and entities Burrard Communications has worked 'for' and/or 'with' in the past based on when she was 'hired', whether or not she was officially 'lobbying', and/or whether or not she, herself, was 'paid' are not the point.

And neither are the bleatings of press poodles who say that everything is fine and on the up-and-up because of multiple such 'technicalities'.

Because what all of this demonstrates, regardless the technicalities is that these fine folks are now, and/or have been, at some level, all in this together.

And that's what matters.

And that, in my opinion, is what should be followed up and chased down by the local proMedia like it was a thousand million back-decks (built from the product of raw logs shipped back from overseas), coming down the mountains.




Anonymous said...

We'll recuse me.!
And that's no joke

scotty on denman said...

Is this the same Christy who defended the abusive BC Civil Forfeiture Office because its ill-gotten money funds her personal special interest, the pinkT-shirt anti-bullying program? Did admitting an obvious misunderstanding of conflict of interest teach her to be more careful?

I'm more than a little suspicious---I mean, it's not like Christy to promise to keep her gob shut.

Anonymous said...

way O/T ...

"Last month, a unit of WPP, the world’s biggest advertising agency, announced it was teaming up with London-based software company Onzo to study ways to collect smart-meter data on household energy use."

"The next stop for big data could be on the sofa next to us as we watch TV. Information flowing through smart meters can be mined to determine users' viewing habits -- not just that people are watching TV, but which programs they're watching, down to individual scenes at specific times."

and it only cost us a BILLION dollars