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.
Compare the passage of 4 years without a charge against Mount Polley operators to the quick response when a rude 19-year-old released an adult-sized blow-up doll over West Vancouver’s Ambleside beach. He was arrested within two weeks and faces a charge of mischief under Canada’s Criminal Code.
Is the BC Liberal Party involved in racketeering, extorting cash from corporations in return for protection from legal and financial sanctions? That the question can reasonably be asked demonstrates the urgency of prohibiting major payments to political parties by groups doing business with government or subject to regulation by public authorities.
One of these things is not like the other thing… but they are connected…
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.
Truncated review processes that assume government should trust and work hand-in-hand with mining proponents, even ones proven to be callous toward civil responsibilities, are certain to result in more ecological mishaps.