Saturday, April 25, 2015

This Just In: Special To The Globe Announces That BC Ferries CEO Can...

...Jump Sharks In Skates!

Earlier we noted that John Gleeson of the small town Coast Reporter paper let us know that BC Ferries' latest CEO has been doing some most impressive shark jumping regarding the fares up/ridership down issue:

BC Ferries CEO and president Mike Corrigan says the public campaign against high ferry fares is keeping tourists away and could become “a self-fulfilling prophecy” that hurts coastal economies along with the ferry system they rely on...

And do not misunderstand Mr. Corrigan  (who keeps right on jumping over the snapping jaws in Mr. Gleeson's) piece, because he really is implying that it's not the high fares that are decreasing ridership but instead he's flat out making stuff up about how it is people who are trying to roll back the fare increases who are the problem

And then, almost as if from nowhere, a superfine bit of puffed-up puffery in the Globe's 'Report on Business' told us just how great Mr. Corrigan is at his job because he once played junior hockey and now plays beer league hockey.

Or some such thing:

Still an intimidating and skilled hockey player, British Columbia Ferry Services Inc. president and CEO Mike Corrigan knew early that he wanted more than an unpredictable NHL career.

“I didn’t want to be a mediocre hockey player in my late 20s with nothing to fall back on,” said Mr. Corrigan, 53. “As good a junior hockey player that I was, I learned how insignificant you can be in life, fairly quickly.”

Since 2012, Mr. Corrigan has been the head coach at BC Ferries, one of the world’s biggest ferry systems, with 35 vessels, 47 terminals and 184,000 annual sailings that carry 20 million passengers and eight million vehicles. He joined the company in 2003, after being recruited for a job as vice-president of business development from an executive position with Westcoast Energy. “I immersed myself in the business,” he said, admitting he knew little about marine operations. By 2006, he was second-in-charge, as chief operating officer...

Given Mr. Corrigan's meteoric rise through the BC Ferries ranks during the age of the Gold Bricked 'n Laced Parachutist, I figured that even the a 30 paragraph-long puff-piece in the business boosterization supplement to Canada's (so-called) national newspaper would actually have at least an example or two of what actually makes Mr. Corrigan so good at his job.

As such, I searched through the entire 30 graphs and found one, kinda/sorta:

...As chief executive officer, he (Corrigan) remains on 24/7 alert, ready to stick-handle unpredictable events, such as on-board medical emergencies or vessel breakdowns. “The last thing I do at night and the first thing I do in the morning is look at my e-mail,” he said. “I’m more confident knowing than not knowing.”

Mr. Corrigan’s journey from ice to sea has been marked by astute self-awareness, a blue-collar backbone and the smarts to manage $3-billion in capital spending over the next 12 years while taking hits, not from defencemen, but teams of critics who scrutinize ferry fares and executive salaries, shipbuilding contracts and cancelled routes...


There you have it.

Mr. Corrigan is fantastic at his job, despite the 'teams of critics' (like, say, these folks)  who make a fuss about all that icky stuff that really and truly affects how the Ferries are run and how much it costs to run them that the Globe's fluffery pufferiest dared not touch, because...

Wait for it...

He reads his Emails regularly.

Paging Ms. Montgomery.

Given that the Globe's scribe wouldn't go there...Here are reminders about real, actual longterm/systemic problems at the Golden Era's Frankensteinian Floating Baby regarding fares, offshore-built ferries, cancelled routes and executive salaries, none of which the good Mr. Corrigan has done anything significant to correct, either by reading Emails or lacing up the skates, as far as I can tell.
And do you think, per chance, especially with the big proMedia puffery-in-pocket, that maybe the good Mr. Corrigan thought he could bamboozle the little guy from the Coast Reporter into starting up a 'blame the activists' newscycle meme?....Nahhhh...The fine media massage therapists at Ferry Corp. would never try to do something like that.... Right?
Tip O' The Toque to an Anon-O-Mouse on the comment thread attached to the original shark jumping post who gave us a heads up on the ROB puffery....There's a lot of good stuff in that thread, including facts and figures that appear to indicate that this is not the first time that Ms. Corrigan has made statements that are at odds with said facts and figures.



North Van's Grumps said...

To help BC Ferries out of their troubles, fares skyrocketing, lack of paying passengers, former MLA/Attorney General Geoff Plant has the answer for Captain CEO Corrigan. Yes, that Geoff Plant who recently announced that Providence St. Paul Catholic Hospital is moving from the high ground on Burrard to a flood plain on Main, right next door to the Train Station which houses CN Rail's Rolling stock store on False Creek Flats. Guaranteed: 24/7 hours of Shunting.

Plant said that they couldn't keep pouring money into an old structure that needed earthquake measures addressed and more room for better service. Moving to a new location was the right answer. Christy Clark even agreed and offered cash up front, in three years.

There is another building, older than St. Paul's, needing well in excess of $300 million just for the basic package of seismological work.

Two colonies, Vancouver Island and Mainland, formed into the Province of British Columbia in Confederation with Canada and WHERE does Governor Douglas build the Legislative Buildings, on an island, accessible only by canoes, sailing ships, steamboats, and finally BC Ferries bound for Victoria originally, Swartz Bay now.

We say move the Government Seat of Power from Victoria to ..... Prince George, or Kelowna, or Elkford, anywhere that BC Ferries, or interior Ferries existence is wholly dependent upon subsidies from us.

Psssst. Give Nat and Flora Bosa a call, they have one crown: Empress Hotel, second crown: BC Legislature, third crown: BC Ferries

RossK said...

A fantastic idea NVG--

Let's see if Mr. Corrigan reads your Email!


Anonymous said...

Did cc get the annual 6 million dollar dididend preferred shares cheque from BCFerry yet?
Maybe ask Mr C

RossK said...


I'm pretty sure Grant G. might want to weigh in on that one.


Anonymous said...

How bout coast guard lookouts on bcferries?

Anonymous said...

Maybe get Jim pattison on board ..of directors?
Muni auditor?
Bc auditor?
Reads like press release?

Lew said...

Ms. Moneo wrote a similar puff piece for the Black Press organ Boulevard Magazine when Corrigan was appointed “head coach” in 2012.

It seems that Ms. Moneo really, really, likes Mr. Corrigan and shows her affection through these cringe worthy examples of her journalistic skills just when he needs public propping up the most.

e.a.f. said...

In my opinion Corrigan is simply just another in a line of over paid "political" operatives to head the B.C. Ferries Corp. The B. of D. for B.C. Ferries, is simply a bunch of B.C. lieberal has beens who because they donate to the B.C. LieberaLS, SOME ONE want to make them feel important. In my opinion not one really knows anything about running a ferry system.

The people who work on the Ferries and at the fare gates are great. Know their stuff, make you feel safe. They are the ones who EARN their money.

The appointees, not so much. it just another e.g. of why the B.C. Lieberals can't run a pop stand.

When you think about it, its a monopoly and these people still can't make money. They have run the business into the ground.

It started with el gordo and his German Ferries and paying 10% interest, when he could have been paying 3%. Not smart. He paid his buddy Hahn a MILLION a yr. and then they made a big deal about ferry workers having free passes, like give a cripe. those workers wouldn't be going over unless they had a free pass and there was space.

They can write all the B.S. about the CEO and his cadre of B.C. Lieberal appointees, but its never going to change how many of who use the ferries see the operation; a pop stand being run in the middle of the desert, with no competition and still going out of business.

Its time to make the B.C. Ferries a Crown corporation again, get rid of the politically anointed B. of D., who are paid far too much, and have a group of people who actually use the ferries and rely on them.

If a Canadian can't figure it out, hire the CEO from Washington State or one of the Scanda countries. As long as they are not "dependant" upon the B.C. Lieberals they may get it right.

People stopped using the ferries because the rates went up. Simple as that. I refuse to pay the B.C. Lieberals one cent more than I have to, hence my lack of travel. Instead of trips every 6 weeks or so. Its 3 times a year and stay a month at a time. I don't mind paying for a service, but I refuse to be ripped off by a bunch of political has beens in bad hair and worse wardrobes.

scotty on denman said...

A large proportion of the Denman Island ferry workers have been offered packages by the dys-management so's, it seems, to be rid of them before the hated cable ferry is launched. There seems to be an increasing number of symptoms of political toxicity affecting the BC Liberals' and their minions at BC Ferries Services Inc, the freakish "privatized"---but not really---public ferry system. BCFS Inc is plainly nervous about its image, purging any potentially disgruntled workers (presumably to be replaced with a few happy, smiling deckhands) whose demeanours might augment those of disgruntled ferry-riders. The Corrigan twaddle is just another symptom. And the Comox Valley Echo newspaper has, a la Black Press' amity for its neo-right government, has (co-incidentally?) fluffed out more puffery by way of staff-writer Drew Penner's April 21 piece on the pending cable-ferry.

Penner shows a modicum of journalistic integrity by acknowledging the cable-ferry "hasn't been the most landmine-free build ever," referring to locals' fury at planned job-cuts (not including the early severances). Despite the BC Liberals' assertion that the ferries are arm's-length and "private", the rest of Penner's piece reads as much like propaganda as it does like advertisement. Perhaps only Islanders will get the irony Penner pens of BC Ferry's cable-ferry rationale to "maintain the same level of service locals have come to expect": fact is Denman and Hornby Islanders have come to expect reduced service like the three sailings recently eliminated, and the highest rate of fare increased of any BC Ferry run. With regard to questions about cabel-ferry safety, Penner quotes BC Ferries as saying "We've got a proven track record for safety and reliability," never questioning how that could be before the cable-ferry is even launched. Great advertisement, excellent propaganda, Drew, but journalism? Nuh-uh, not much.

Too bad cuz I was wondering how Transport Canada's gonna certify this run with three of its six deckhands eliminated. I mean, what if there's a vehicle fire halfway across? Is three enough to take care of the fire, the ferry and the passengers all at the same time?

Resort to absurdism is symptomatic of an increasingly self-conscious, nervous government. It would only serve as extra proof if we could be apprised of caucus prayer sessions beseeching that the cable-ferry had better work as billed, and the ferries system in general had better start providing serviceable advertisement and propaganda---this absurdism is plainly getting old.

Anonymous said...

To be charitable, if Corrigan truly believes his thesis, perhaps the coach has been subjected to one too many head traumas and is displaying early symptoms of Parkinson's Syndrome. This is occasionally seen in football players, soccer players, boxers and hockey players.

Anonymous said...

Some reporters Have looked into the PMO office doings?
Maybe look into bc premiers office?

Anonymous said...

How about something a loot more serious?