Category: Justice

Punishment does not fit the crime

When Justice Kenneth Affleck jailed a senior who was honestly motivated to improve the world, the judge was following a long-established Canadian legal tradition. It dictates: Punishment need not fit the crime when the perpetrator is a white-collar criminal or a senior officer of a wealthy corporation.

We must demand redress

Important people perverted British Columbia’s judicial system so that wrongdoing in the privatization of BC Rail assets was hidden and remains in that state even today. These people included politicians, high ranking civil servants, RCMP officers and senior members of the BC Supreme Court. Their actions were facilitated by journalists employed by corporate media…

The misinformation strategy

However, this is a province where government routinely spends billions annually to subsidize multinational resource and power companies and spent 14 years in the courts fighting delivery of educational services to children in need. This government, found by the land’s highest court to be contemptuous of constitutional rights, cannot be counted on to change its priorities.

“Meaningful collective bargaining”

A prominent BC Government supporter wrote last week that, by vote of 6-2, Canada’s high court effectively handed “the Liberals ass on a plate.” Indeed, Justice Beverley McLachlin and colleagues concluded a legal process that should trouble every citizen. Not just that, in setting public education policy, an elected provincial government government behaved like a tin pot dictatorship but that four British Columbia Appeal Court judges believed they could ignore clear precedents established by the nation’s Supreme Court.

Delay, legislate, litigate, repeat

On November 10, Canada’s highest court reinstated Madam Justice Griffin’s 2014 judgement that found BC had bargained with teachers in bad faith and breached the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. She awarded BCTF $2 million in damages. This high court action should conclude a dispute that has gone on since 2002 but, as long as British Columbia’s government follows the circular pattern described by this article’s title, it will not. Contempt for teachers is only one aspect of BC Liberal antipathy for public education.

Double standard? Of course!

In British Columbia, where income and disability assistance rates went unchanged from 2007 to 2016, the Campbell and Clark Governments have bent over backward to provide corporate welfare to people who write large cheques to the BC Liberal Party.

Ruining the just man’s cause

New York State officials aimed to limit the extraordinary electoral influence of extraordinary wealth. People who wanted their financial powers unrestricted began legal action and, applying higher court rulings, United States District Judge Paul A. Crotty tossed the limits. He did so with obvious regret, complaining he was forced to apply a definition for corruption “no matter how misguided . . . [the Court] may think it to be.”

The Judge’s five-page opinion is worth considering, particularly now as the British Columbia government repudiates citizens calling for rules against corporate and union political donations. Insights West calculate that 86% support a ban. In today’s neverending cycle of campaigning and lobbying; lobbying and campaigning, elected officials know where their money is coming from and that it must keep coming if they are to stay in office.

…influence bought by money is no different than a bribe, and as the Book of Exodus 23:8 counsels, “a bribe blinds the clearsighted and is the ruin of the just man’s cause.”

"A strong message…"

Canadian bank fined $1.1M for failing to report suspicious dealings, CTV News, April 5, 2016 The federal anti-money laundering agency has levied a $1.1-million penalty against an unnamed Canadian bank for failing […]

Would 7¢ fines deter improper acts by citizens?

A fine of $100,000 to Enbridge is equivalent to a fine of 7¢ to a Canadian earning median income. Looking at net assets, a fine of $100,000 to Enbridge is equivalent to a fine of 45¢ to a person at the Canadian median. Finland is a nation that believes in both progressive taxation and progressive punishment. A millionaire businessman was fined €54,000 ($73,000 CAN) for speeding. It is part of a tradition of “progressive punishment” that considers ability to pay.