After thousands of hours studying provincial politics, I almost reached my Howard Beale moment today. Not because of one issue, but the cumulative effect of many. If you forget Howard Beale, watch the video below. In fact, watch it anyway.
I’m mad as hell. Angry that the family of Harvey Malesku had to go public with their own video tape showing the 81-year old on a bed in a hallway at Royal Columbian Hospital in New Westminster. The ailing old man was still there after five days treatment for congestive heart failure.
Adrian Dix says,
“What’s happening to this family at Royal Columbian Hospital happens there every day. The hospital is running over capacity every single day. These issues have been raised by doctors, by nurses, by healthcare workers way back since the BC Liberal government closed St. Mary’s Hospital [in 2004].”
The issues have also been discussed by Adrian Dix for years. In 2007, he raised the issue of Mary Lou Frye, a victim of chaos at Royal Columbian who had brain surgery cancelled six times. This inhumane treatment forced her to stop medication a week in advance each time surgery was set, resulting in pain, discomfort, fear and disappointment.
To repeat, the Royal Columbian situation is not new. Nor is it unique to this one facility and the situation will get worse. BC Liberal frontrunner Christy Clark says balanced budgets must come first so she plans on “bringing healthcare spending down.” Her main business sponsor, advisor, oilman, construction magnate, think-tank director and columnist Gwyn Morgan wrote in the Globe and Mail,
“The only realistic option is to put the brakes on spending. But how? The obvious place to start is health care, every province’s biggest and fastest rising expense.”
Morgan has reaped untold personal wealth through resource extraction in Canada. His Victoria area home was valued around $10 million five years ago. He now sits as Chairman of SNC-Lavalin, a company that has fed greedily at the public trough for years. They have been prime benefactors of BC Liberal borrow and spend policies, most recently on the Sea to Sky Highway and the Canada Line rapid transit. But, Morgan and his country club friends don’t want to pay taxes, they don’t want to pay for social services, healthcare and education for Canada’s peons and peasants. They prefer cash flowing in the opposite direction.
We know that Christy Clark and friends do not want us to bother ourselves thinking about BC Rail and Basi/Virk. However, after Vaughn Palmer, Bill Good and friend told us they could think of no questions to ask, blogger Ian Reid helped them out with reference to a list by their fellow journalist Douglas Todd. Don’t expect any change from the Fantasyland trio though; they’ve been blind and deaf on this story for some time.
Of course, the golden boys of BC Ferries are back in the news, warning that services must be cut and fares doubled in he next four years if the organization is to remain capable of paying 7-figure executive compensation. I wonder how Gwyn Morgan feels about David Hahn and his VPs being the highest salaried group of senior executives in the world’s entire shipping business.
If I needed something else to raise blood pressure this week, it would be the BC Place boondoggle where construction proceeds on the stadium and trade centre for western Canada largest casino. This secret and flawed process is another quiet scandal that benefits friends and Liberal insiders. The mainstream media largely ignores this issue, preferring to report on abandoned puppies and dead sled dogs. However, Emily Barca did a wonderful piece for the alternative media Vancouver Observer.
Some of the best reporting by anyone now is Laila Yuile’s work. She calls her latest contribution Falcon’s Follies and you can read part two here. This extraordinary individual works without resources, revenues and corporate sponsors, with hand-me-down equipment and zero budget for research, travel and entertainment. However, Laila does have an inexhaustible supply of fortitude and is building a network of silent contributors. Most of us believe that ultimately the BC Liberals will be brought down by the whistleblowers. Too much has gone on for too long and too many people know the real stories.
The future of British Columbia has not been sold by BC Liberals. It has been given away. I’m reminded of the report from Egypt by freelancer Tom Popyk. He said citizens referred to Mubarak as Ali Baba, the Arabic thief. They cried not just for riches stolen, but also a generation’s dreams.
In British Columbia, a few citizens are stealing riches from from us all. Unfortunately, they are stealing the wealth of future generations too.
Mad As Hell! Kinetic Typography from Aaron Leming on Vimeo.
Categories: BC Ferries