Ep 197 Transcript

The following is a largely AI-generated transcript for Ep 197. Excuse any errors, we’re trying to catch up on these and need to sort out a workflow. Want to help make our transcripts better? Let us know if you can help our support us on Patreon.

[00:02:08] Ian Bushfield: Let’s kick it off with our first segment. We are me. I guess we’re in our annual ethics probe with the federal government,

[00:02:17] Scott de Lange Boom: the annual ethics probe for Justin Trudeau, specifically. Sweet. Let’s set your watch five ISTE app. And so regularly.

[00:02:25] Ian Bushfield: Yeah, we had the SNC Lavalin scandal.

[00:02:30] We had the AGA Khan trip. Was there anything else or are those the two big ones?

[00:02:35] Scott de Lange Boom: Those are the two big ones. This is number three,

[00:02:38] Ian Bushfield: which is not a great record in six, seven years of governing. So it’s maybe a little less than every year, but every 18 months to two years, it’s quite a few ethics probes for any party.

[00:02:51] And when you’re the liberal party who have a history of, uh, or at least a brand that gets caught up with playing fast and loose with the rules, sometimes having additional ethics, tropes is not great, but let’s maybe dig into the latest on the wee scandal.

[00:03:08] Scott de Lange Boom: Yeah. So. After we recorded last week, but before we actually put out our episode, the federal government did a very hasty backtrack on award in this 900 plus million dollar bid.

[00:03:25] That was apparently sole source to the we foundation decided Nope, not going to do that. Pulled the plug. Didn’t really explain why. If they were so insistent on us was the only organization in Canada that could possibly run it. Why that suddenly wasn’t the case.

[00:03:43] Ian Bushfield: So it sounded a bit like it was played up as Wes’ decision that, or it was a mutual decision.

[00:03:51] Initially, a Trudeau said later on Friday afternoon that the decision to cut ties was Wes’ decision. Which we, that being the government, uh, support, uh, that makes sense from the kill burgers point of view, if you’re getting an incredible amount of scrutiny, uh, all this extra attention and heat walking away was probably the clean thing to do.

[00:04:16] You know, her charity doesn’t need that kind of, uh, you know, intense pressure and heat so I can get why they did it. But whether the government also. You know, whose idea it was and who initiated those conversations. I don’t know if we’ll ever know, but it’s definitely to both the government and Wes’ benefit that they’ve parted ways.

[00:04:39] Scott de Lange Boom: I am curious who did initiate that discussion within the federal government about award in this two week, because it just seems so poorly thought out, like everybody should have known that this was going to cause a problem yet. Nobody seemed to have really. Stopped it in the PMO at all.

[00:04:59] Ian Bushfield: So Trudeau kept parroting the line, even as they were parting ways that only we, as the only charity that’s got these quote unquote connections to smaller charities to really make this happen.

[00:05:11] And I just don’t believe that to be true. Like there are. Organizations like, imagine Canada that work hard in the sector. Um, volunteer Canada that worked directly with putting volunteers in small charities and midsize charities that makes, you know, we as not the only one out there, we as big and schools and we as big with pop stars and celebrities, but we as not big in the like, Soup kitchens and midsize environmental justice charities and whatever else is out there, part of the sector.

[00:05:51] And so it’s just all got that feeling of like chumminess and that kind of runs through one of the stories we’ll get to later. But the thing we alluded to off the top is that the ethics watchdog has kicked off an investigation into the decision to grant this contract.

[00:06:08] Scott de Lange Boom: So on the same date that the.

[00:06:10] Federal government announced they weren’t going to go ahead with Franton we, this program, the ethics watchdog, Mario Dion, the conflict of interest and ethics commissioner formally announced he was opening an investigation. This is after several opposition, MPS wrote to him, ask him to do that. In fact, there was a bit of a kerfuffle over which party got to claim credit.

[00:06:36] Ian Bushfield: For this, well, at least Charlie Angus of the NDP and, uh, one of the conservative MPS Carnot Genuis or someone else wrote,

[00:06:44] Scott de Lange Boom: but I can’t remember which conservative MP

[00:06:46] Ian Bushfield: it was. It kinda doesn’t matter in the end, the fact that they wrote, I think Dion wrote back to the conservatives to explain that he will be launching an investigation and some of the details of it.

[00:06:57] And once one of the Massport,

[00:06:59] Scott de Lange Boom: Michael Barrett,

[00:07:00] Ian Bushfield: Michael Barrett, once one of the masks, the other had to ask as well.

[00:07:03] Scott de Lange Boom: So, so we will be initiating an investigation. His powers are ultimately fairly limited in what he can do, but nevertheless, it’s not going to be politically drugged for Trudeau. If the ethics watchdog does find that the rules were broken

[00:07:19] Ian Bushfield: now we saw after SNC.

[00:07:22] That I believe that watched or the commissioner issued a fairly damning report, which actually surprised quite a few people, but it came out in late summer, largely got buried by the news cycle. And like you say, he doesn’t have the power to really do much more than Wagga finger finger at the government.

[00:07:39] But if you have a pile of bad rulings from the conflict of interest commissioner, it’s not a great case to run into reelection in the future.

[00:07:50] Scott de Lange Boom: No it is. And then. This is unlikely to bring the government down unless he finds something really damning in it, which maybe there’s something to that which we’ll get to in a moment.

[00:08:02] But what it does do is it does build on kind of this existing narrative about Trudeau and all of the major Trudeau scandals have basically followed a pattern of him being a little too chummy with some group person, organization. And. Acting in a way that’s not necessarily as detached as a prime minister should be.

[00:08:26] And like I said, being chummy when it’s inappropriate and that kind of just builds into this narrative that, you know, Trudeau is this dilatory kid from a political family. Who’s, you know, acting for his own interests. It’s more and not the country as a whole.

[00:08:48] Ian Bushfield: And one of the big things that was being pushed by the government.

[00:08:52] And we prior to today, and the story we’re about to get to is that there was this claim that members of the Trudeau family didn’t received any funding, any honoraria, any fees from the we charity for appearing at these wee events, uh, They may have gotten some travel expenses covered, but there was no stipend given.

[00:09:16] So there was no advantage given to the Trudeau’s. Now that kind of doesn’t matter for Dion cause the conflict of interest acts. And he’s looking at sub section 61 and section six and seven, all deal with just making decisions that further private interests of the public office holder or another person and giving someone preferential treatment.

[00:09:40] Like there are, it’s very clear when money is involved. Like if you give a government contract to a business who, you know, is your, that your spouse runs, that’s a clear conflict of interest. Cause you’ve personally benefit from that. But there is this level of influence peddling and sort of soft power and things that aren’t just money related that do count as conflict of interest.

[00:10:05] And that’s where he’ll be in investigating. At least in part,

[00:10:09] Scott de Lange Boom: even if it wasn’t written in that way in the legislation, it still shouldn’t have happened because it’s important that the government seems to be acting evolve forward, regardless of whether or not their adherence strictly to the letter of the law, like for the government to have legitimacy both in like the narrow political sense of the support of the Canadian public and in may.

[00:10:35] Broader meta-level about support for our institutions. In general, the government does seem, does need to be seen to be acting in the general public interest. And even if no laws were broken, it still should not have been okay for it to be run this way.

[00:10:55] Ian Bushfield: And despite that claim that no money really changed hands.

[00:10:59] It turns out we was being very selective in the focus there. So we charity never directly paid. Any of the Trudeau’s except it turns out one time in error, but we also has the, me too. We social enterprise and it was broken by Canada land and expanded upon, I think by CBC this afternoon that actually Margaret Trudeau has received $312,000 for 28 speaking events, which is over $11,000 in event.

[00:11:29] And. Uh, Trudeau’s brother Sasha has received $40,000 for eight events. Now those, they didn’t get the commission off those. So they got about two 50 and $32,000 respectively, but that’s a significant amount of money that has definitely gone to the Trudeau family from the we family of organizations. And it turns out that there was actually one instance when about $64,000 went from we charity to Margaret Trudeau.

[00:11:58] Which the organization then describes as a billing error. And they later had that paid by me to we social enterprise, who is a sponsor of we events and happens to also be the same people. All this is to say money has definitely changed hands and it makes it a lot a skeezy here than it was even a week ago, which was, uh, hard to imagine.

[00:12:20] Scott de Lange Boom: It wasn’t good. It just looked like Trudeau. Whereas. Given his buddies have a helping hand on this one and it looks much, much worse when over a quarter of a million dollars has gone directly to his mother and a other sizable sum to his brother. In theory, he might even one day inherit that money. So it’s the sort of thing that’s just not above board at all.

[00:12:47] And understandably is probably to cause him a lot of problems as it

[00:12:52] Ian Bushfield: should. And like we charity and me too, we are legally separate and are legally separate organizations. And I get the purposes of that to any lay observer. These organizations are, have connections. Like there are a lot of the same people are involved and at the very least, the optics of all of this are really bad.

[00:13:15] And the fact Trudeau and others didn’t. Nick fess up to the fact this money had changed hands cause no one forgets that they’ve earned hundreds of thousands of dollars over the years. I would hope I would imagine. I don’t know. I don’t live in those circles.

[00:13:31] Scott de Lange Boom: The Trudeau family is fairly wealthy, but not Billy.

[00:13:35] And they’re wealthy where this just becomes a rounding error. There’s no reason they shouldn’t have known about that. And more to the point. There’s no reason the staff at the PMO and. Whatever other bodies were formalizing. This contract shouldn’t have done their due diligence and looked into this.

[00:13:55] Ian Bushfield: So is it time for Trudeau to do as bloc Quebecois leader  has suggested and for a few months, uh, step aside and leave the function.

[00:14:06] And perhaps Krista Freeland could step into the job until all of this is cleared. All right,

[00:14:10] Scott de Lange Boom: let’s be serious. What this is, this is all but calling for his resignation because if the prime minister steps aside for a few months where there’s an ethics investigation going on that effectively destroys his prime minister ship.

[00:14:23] So it’s a call for resignation in all, but name and the opposition in this country needs to learn to keep their powder dry and not jump on the first opportunity to call for resignation. You saw shear mate, this exact mistake in the SNC Loveland affair where day two or something of it. He was at they’re calling for resignations before any of the fats were really out before it had had a chance to really sink in with Canadians.

[00:14:56] And it’s far from clear that we’re at that point now where we’re still learning new stuff every day on this and better to wait for a few more. Damage and bits that come out and jumping on it immediately.

[00:15:11] Ian Bushfield: Yeah. I give credit to shear for not calling for a resignation yet. That’s actually surprising.

[00:15:15] That’s a, that’s a personal growth for him. I think even, I don’t even think the

[00:15:19] Scott de Lange Boom: chapel days

[00:15:20] Ian Bushfield: have the, uh, Oh, tool or Peter McKay. I don’t even think they’ve called for a resignation yet.

[00:15:25] Scott de Lange Boom: Uh, I’m not sure I’ve been ignoring their emails.

[00:15:28] Ian Bushfield: Yeah. Resignations are definitely something. You just let them fall on their own sword when it’s their time.

[00:15:33] You don’t need to. Try to push them because it just looks petty.

[00:15:37] Scott de Lange Boom: Well, normally that has the opposition. It’s the nuclear button or like the tier below, it’s the tactical nuclear button rather than the strategic nuclear button. But it’s still the nuclear button. Pretty much short of bringing the government down in an non confidence vote.

[00:15:54] Ian Bushfield: Oh, but see, I thought Tom WellCare said the nuclear button was calling someone a racist. This is what he actually said about Chuck made, saying, I don’t know why anyone gives them Thomas Mulcaire on microphone anymore.

[00:16:04] Scott de Lange Boom: I’m not sure what WMD analogy that falls under, but it’s definitely not the nuclear button.

[00:16:09] Ian Bushfield: But yeah, blush that definitely, you know, used his strongest words he could hear. And where do you go?

[00:16:16] Scott de Lange Boom: Yeah. And then where does he go from here? That that’s the problem with this is once you use it, then what, there’s no way to escalate this further short of forcing an election, which nobody’s really prepared for.

[00:16:30] Ian Bushfield: Um, maybe blush that is,

[00:16:31] Scott de Lange Boom: I’m not sure, like the block did pretty well. They’re trying to, they hold the balance of power. Somewhat like their Trudeau will be caught in their votes on issues. It’s not clear that that’s going to be the case. Come the end of a trot like gym period.

[00:16:48] Ian Bushfield: In the meantime, I guess we’ll be waiting to see what more gems drop about the MI charity, the Mitsui FA uh, social enterprise and anything else in this scandal with the ethics commissioner investigating it, we will expect a report out at some point.

[00:17:07] And hopefully that helps. Dig into a little bit, how we got into this mess. And in the meantime, I hope at least the government can get those grants out on its own. It’s not a perfect program. I don’t really like the idea of paying volunteers less than minimum wage. They’re either staff where they get minimum wage or they’re volunteers, but you know, if we’re going to have a volunteering grant program, let’s at least not hurt the people it’s trying to benefit.

[00:17:35] Scott de Lange Boom: The one thing I’ll say before we move on is four months. We were talking about, you know, when is politics as normal to reemerge we’re in this kind of weird crisis period where, you know, politics had been put aside to the extent that it is possible to do so. And now that we have come out of it, it’s going to be a lot more politics as normal.

[00:17:57] There’s going to be more fighting. The, the rally around the flag effect is probably at a 10. Then that’s going to put Trudeau in a lot more vulnerable position because of the crisis. And the fact that kind of politics was largely, largely put aside. You haven’t had as tough questions there isn’t there hasn’t been a real scrupulous look at everything that’s going on.

[00:18:24] Hundreds of billions of dollars that are going out the door, what that means for long term. And we’ll get to that in a couple of minutes, but the benefit of the doubt is now gone and that’s going to make it a lot tougher for the, this minority government to navigate those waters going forward.

[00:18:40] Ian Bushfield: Well, let’s move on to talk about those record breaking numbers.

[00:18:46] Scott de Lange Boom: Yeah. So we’ll move on to segment two, our record breaking snapshot yesterday. Finance minister, bill Morneau released the fiscal snapshot, which is a new thing. This isn’t a fiscal update or a budget, but it’s kind of, I guess, a mini fiscal update that only really covers what’s happening right now in the next few months.

[00:19:08] But headline takeaway from this is that there’s expected to be a $343 billion deficit for 2020. And for the record, that was pretty much the size of the entire government spending before this, over the course of a year, that is up from three 34 point $4 billion, which is effectively a tenfold increase.

[00:19:31] And this is in large part things to the $236 billion spent to date. Plus what they’re projected forward over the next couple of months.

[00:19:40] Ian Bushfield: Uh, it’s fun. We’ve hit a total debt of one point $2 trillion. Which is a number I cannot comprehend in any possible way. It’s not all bad news in a way. I mean, the federal debt to GDP ratio, like you said, it’s up to, and headlines are talking about how it’s up to, uh, rates not seem for several decades.

[00:20:04] We’re at 49% for this year up from 31%,

[00:20:07] Scott de Lange Boom: that’s still in the healthy range.

[00:20:10] Ian Bushfield: Well, and the big thing right now is that we have. Absurdly low interest rates. So like I’m almost looking, we’re looking at possibly refinancing our mortgage or getting a new, moving into a new place. And the banks are basically like, if you break your mortgage, you might come out ahead.

[00:20:27] So I’m worried, we’ve only got our mortgage like 18 months ago at 3.4 and they’re already down to like 2.4. So rates are low. The government is actually expecting that the, despite all of this, the cost of service, our debt will be $4 billion low. Lower this year than it was projected to be

[00:20:45] Scott de Lange Boom: is a little uncertain.

[00:20:45] It’s they’ve announced their plan. They’re trying to be trying to put the stet up there in terms of 10 30 year bonds, 50. I even heard speculation today on some podcasts I was listening to of a hundred year bond who knows that there’s actually an appetite in the market for that. Just the thing that is remaining could be seen on here is how much uptake a.

[00:21:10] 30 year bond paying out at 1% or less, how much interest is there in that? Yeah,

[00:21:18] Ian Bushfield: I mean, like I said, overall, we’re in still a pretty good situation. Uh, the conservatives are quick to point out that Canada did get downgraded by one credit agency though. Most other still keep us out of AAA credit rating.

[00:21:35] Like it’s tough, right? We’re in a unprecedented situation. And so to have. These numbers. Isn’t that shocking in a way. I mean, if you were following along and adding things up, this seems about where we should be

[00:21:49] Scott de Lange Boom: 49% of GDP at what maybe the lowest interest rate ever or close to the lowest interest rate ever is still pretty healthy.

[00:22:00] Even when interest rates were higher, it was generally considered Biotron Mississippi. Well within a healthy range, if you’re anywhere under a hundred percent of debt, the GDP, and you know, it’s the federal government, they’re a sovereign borrower. There’s a bunch of advantages. They have that in theory makes it even give them even more flexibility on this.

[00:22:25] The bank of Canada’s doing what it’s tan to keep interest rates low, maybe buying up a bunch of the debt as well, which is effectively what. Be printing money, but inflation still pretty low. So that’s not a huge problem at this time. It’s like overall, it’s worrying if this 300 plus billion dollar deficit is a return thing over the next half decade, we might be facing some serious problems, but we’re not in the stage where anyone needs to panic yet.

[00:22:57] Despite the opposition doing a little bit to try and get that going. But what is. Yep. What’s still a little unclear is what’s the path out. And there’s a reason they did this as a snapshot rather than as a full fiscal uptick, because that’s still a big unknown. We don’t know if, how quickly the economy will recover once there is a vaccine and Covitz controlled and we also don’t know when that is going to be.

[00:23:26] So we’re in this tough spot. It’s really hard to pontificate much beyond this because. The error bars. Once we go past the fall are just so big.

[00:23:38] Ian Bushfield: It does get really hard to hold the government to account when it’s refusing to even put big error bars out there. So I get the criticism that, you know, there are smart people in the ministry of finance.

[00:23:50] The opposition does not have the resources they do to plot this out. So making some projections beyond 2021 could be more healthy. Or could be more useful, but it also, if your government and you can get away with not making those predictions, why not take that easier path? The other numbers I was looking at in this are more on the health of the economy from sort of two perspectives in the short term, uh, GDP this year was expected to shrink about 6.8% now, but they’re expecting it to bounce back to a 5.5% growth next year.

[00:24:29] Now, when you’re, when something crashes a big growth can be, uh, not bring you back to where you were. But, you know, a 5.5% growth would still be a nice swing around

[00:24:42] Scott de Lange Boom: just the way the math works on it. It’s, you know, if you’re go down 6% and then go opposites percent, you’re still not quite where you were because the 6% growth is actually as measured as 6% of a lower baseline.

[00:24:57] So it’s almost a little deceptive that yeah, we’re going down and back up, but. The gap is still a lot bigger than the headline numbers just suggest.

[00:25:08] Ian Bushfield: And on the unemployment rate it, as far as they can tell peaked at about 14% in second quarter of this year. And it will probably return closer to pre pandemic levels of around 7% by the end of next year, which means.

[00:25:26] They’re fairly optimistic. Most people will be returning to work or some kind of work, which is a pretty positive thing. Although again, what the nature of that work looks like will still be determined.

[00:25:42] Be on two quick takes, let’s start off in America where they have. Trump has formally notified the United nations that the United States of America will be withdrawing from the world health organization and pulling the majority of that organization’s funding along with it, which is great in no way.

[00:26:03] Scott de Lange Boom: Are you, what can you say to this beyond the fact that for your largest single funder withdrawing in the middle of a pandemic from the world health organization is a bad.

[00:26:14] Saying,

[00:26:15] Ian Bushfield: I mean, CBC points out in a sentence that Trump’s trailing Biden in multiple polls and has sought to deflect criticism of the administration’s handling of the virus by aggressively attacking China and the who. And that analysis seems about as astute as any,

[00:26:31] Scott de Lange Boom: it’s not necessarily wrong. Like there was a bunch of screw ups on both of those parties that counts, particularly in the early days of this.

[00:26:42] But nevertheless, it’s not in a great spot to like doing this now doesn’t actually help anything. It doesn’t resolve those problems. It doesn’t change anything out. It just takes resources out of the fight when they can’t be spared. The other thing here that Trump has criticized the WHL one is being too much in China’s pocket.

[00:27:05] And the worst possible thing to do with that is your big concern is. Withdraw and lose all your influence in the who as a result. I mean, this is part of a broader strategic failure by the Trump administration to take seriously, the need to engage in multilateral institutions precisely do keep competing powers in check and hopefully Biden will turn that around.

[00:27:35] But. It’s hard to say. The one thing, I will also notice that this doesn’t actually take a fact that he’s given notice, but the formal drop period is not until next year. So in theory, as possible for Biden to reverse it, if he wins as he is likely to do

[00:27:52] Ian Bushfield: the other, a fun point about this is. Apparently under the WHS constitution to withdraw you can’t be in a rears.

[00:28:01] You can’t own money, essentially. Your past debt and the U S I guess, Oh, something like $200 million in past dues. It provides 400 million a year. So if they don’t pay, they can’t leave, I guess.

[00:28:15] Scott de Lange Boom: Yes, but this is Trump. Like the guy famous for stupid out on his debts and you know, what’s the who going to do, like there, isn’t actually a way to enforce

[00:28:25] Ian Bushfield: it.

[00:28:26] He’ll just not be showing up at meetings and they’ll have to, Oh, they’ll keep sending them invoices. But yeah, I looked up the numbers of COVID-19 in the U S today just to put them in. Uh, context because I don’t think the, who has been the failure at responding to this, that America is quickly becoming a, there were almost 59,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases today in the United States, another 829 deaths bringing their total.

[00:28:58] Uh, death count to 132,309. Uh, any one who’s looked at the charts recently has seen, there’s been a massive upswing and I, the death toll hasn’t gone, or the daily death toll hasn’t tracked that quite yet. But as cases are confirmed, uh, people. Um, might not live too much longer, which is a terrifying thought.

[00:29:23] It’s not a good time to be, especially in the Southern States. I think Florida in particular is just out of control. So let’s keep that border closed, I

[00:29:33] Scott de Lange Boom: guess. Yeah. There’s actually a bunch of conscious people who sent a letter to our government asking for us to reopen our borders or start their process.

[00:29:45] We rightfully said no pretty quick, but. That did happen. And I’m glad that government is in no rush to get things opened up. Goats are still flowing across. There’s still essential travel happening. It’s like the real stop is people on non essential travel and with everything else going on. That’s. Seems pretty reasonable moving onto our nets.

[00:30:10] Quick, take the BC green party leadership race. Got a little more deciding this week as the former green party leader, Elizabeth May endorsed Sonja first now in her bid to become leader of the provincial green party.

[00:30:25] Ian Bushfield: I don’t know if this really makes it more exciting or more of a done deal. Like Kim Darwin is still in the race and we’re hoping to talk to her soon.

[00:30:32] We’ll be reaching out soon. If her team isn’t listening

[00:30:36] Scott de Lange Boom: well, it’s. It’s more exciting because it’s actually news about this leadership race, which is faded into the background with everything else that’s been going on.

[00:30:44] Ian Bushfield: That’s true.

[00:30:45] Scott de Lange Boom: But like you said, Sonia first now is the Leer favorite and front runner right now.

[00:30:51] So how much this helps is probably not a huge amount on the margin.

[00:30:57] Ian Bushfield: At least it brings some attention to the race. The next big followup story on the provincial scene is the special committee on reforming. The police act has been announced this sweet teased a couple of weeks ago when we talked about, uh, policing issues.

[00:31:12] And the fact Mike Farnworth had committed to announcing a committee to study the issue and to, uh, look at updating the provinces police act, or we have a all party committee that includes. For new Democrats for BC liberals and animals and for the greens, uh, it will be chaired by Nicholas Simons, Gary beg bone Mon Rachana sing, fill out the new Democrats caucus on their jazz.

[00:31:38] Joe Hall, Mike Morris, Ellis Ross and Michelle Stilwell are representing them. BC liberals. Uh, the terms of reference are out. Essentially look at reforms relating to oversight, transparency, governance, structure, training, education, and so forth, including funding to modernize and make more sustainable policing under the police act.

[00:32:00] Uh, look at the role of policing with respect to complex social issues, including mental health, wellness, addictions harm reduction, and look at any necessary. Related change the mental health act. Number three, look at the scope of systemic racism within BCS police agencies, including the RCMP, local police, designated policing units, et cetera.

[00:32:20] And finally, whether there’s any necessary amendments to the police act to bring it in line with the UN declaration on the rights of indigenous people.

[00:32:29] Scott de Lange Boom: So this isn’t probably what the abolish, the police, uh, advocates are there to be happy with, but. Nevertheless, it seems like a pretty solid set of reforms to go evaluate.

[00:32:45] Ian Bushfield: Yeah. I think the one thing a lot of people were disappointed or called out that wasn’t in there is provincial health officer, dr. Bonnie Henry’s previous recommendations that the province could use the police act and the powers within it to effectively decriminalize drugs in BC, essentially tell police to stop enforcing certain.

[00:33:07] Criminal code offenses. And Mike Farnworth said, you know, that’s a separate issue that we’ll consider on its own or it deserves to be considered on its own. I E they don’t want to do it. And so they’ll focus just on the structure of placing, I guess, in this situation.

[00:33:24] Scott de Lange Boom: It’s also a bit tricky though, just because decriminalization isn’t true.

[00:33:29] Really something that’s constitutionally in theory, part of the provincial government’s responsibilities and it opens the door to a nasty jurisdictional fight with the federal government. So I can see why it got left off of the terms of reference.

[00:33:46] Ian Bushfield: I mean, I believe her report when she released it, did lay out a very clear path on how this could be done without really stepping into the federal government’s jurisdiction.

[00:33:59] By focusing on the decriminalization of people who use drugs and prioritizing other, um, approaches, but rather than re litigate that, I mean, like you say, this is a pretty broad base terms of reference. I think the, uh, lineup on this committee is really positive, both from the NDP side where you have people, including Carrie Beck, who I believe beg is a former cop or yeah, he was a former RCMP officer.

[00:34:29] Bo and Mon Russia, seeing both been strong advocates for civil liberties and justice, Ellis Ross and Adam Olson are both indigenous and have different experiences there. I’m really interested to see what they come up with and how this team approaches this question.

[00:34:46] Scott de Lange Boom: Yeah, it’s going to be interesting to see where this comes back with and what the actual recommendations are going to be.

[00:34:53] And also what the government will lack on them.

[00:34:55] Ian Bushfield: It’s one of those ones where I’m possibly optimistic. They can come to an all party consensus. Like you say, it won’t meet the peak of activist demands, but that’s kind of what activists exists for is to set the bar, whether it’s realistic or not. And government doesn’t meet that, but might move a bit more in that direction.

[00:35:16] The only other thing I wanted to mention in relation to this story is it was interesting this past week, the Canadian association of chiefs of police actually came out and released a statement saying they would support the decriminalization of personal possession of illicit substances. And instead have.

[00:35:35] That be a more health focused approach rather than a criminal justice approach. Now they’d still obviously consider trafficking and drug dealing and those kinds of offenses to be criminal issues and especially the organized crime elements, but rather than dealing with the person using on the street, let that person interface with harm reduction and health care facilities, which.

[00:36:02] Seems to be the consent, you know, the evolving consensus. So hopefully we can start to see some movement at the federal level beyond, I think only the NDP has really taken it up. I think the B and a, I think the federal liberal members have supported broad decriminalization, but the liberal party of Canada is still reticent.

[00:36:22] Scott de Lange Boom: Yeah, this isn’t a government that’s exactly known for its risk taking on a lot of these sorts of issues. So maybe they’ll do something. Maybe not, maybe they’ll do something like moves it very slightly towards it. And call mission accomplished.

[00:36:36] Ian Bushfield: Chiefs of police are not known for their like radical, progressive viewpoints in my mind.

[00:36:42] Like this is a definition of a small C conservative clubs. So welcome to the decriminalize, the drugs team.

[00:36:49] Scott de Lange Boom: Yeah. Although I think polo, Lisa. Not particularly thrilled about being the front line, you know, mental health workers on a lot of situations. So it does kind of make sense why they’d be pushing for this as well.

[00:37:03] Ian Bushfield: Well, as a followup to a story we mentioned, uh, last week or a couple of weeks ago, Mary Ellen turbo, LaFond had been appointed to investigate the range and extent of anti indigenous racism in the health care system. Following some troubling reports. Of super racist behavior. Uh, she’s started her investigation.

[00:37:24] She announced, and she’s announced that several themes have already emerged largely that, you know, indigenous people are reporting when they go seeking healthcare. They’re repeatedly questioned about whether they’re drunk or dealing with addictions before they receive general care. Um, she’s outlined what the scope of her report will be.

[00:37:43] And it’s not a question of whether there’s racism out there. It’s a question of. You know, how does it manifest? What are the issues now, she’s also pointed out those specific hospitals where these incidents are happening. They don’t need to wait for the recommendations. They kind of know what needs to be done in terms of tackling anti indigenous racism and should probably start doing it right away.

[00:38:05] But she wants to have her report done within a few months and to really have those implemented through the healthcare system. So it’ll be interesting. To watch that report come out. She’s launched a public consultation website, engage.gov.bc.ca/addressing racism. And if you see racism in the healthcare system, you can call the toll free number triple eight, 603 zero seven eight or email [email protected].

[00:38:34] So they have all the, all the communication methods. What’d you call it a racism snitch line supposed to code. I’m not generally in favor of snitch lines, but maybe this is a good one to have.

[00:38:44] Scott de Lange Boom: Well, moving on to a quick follow up from our discussion last week regarding the advertisements by various MLS in publications that feature homophobic content press progress is reporting that one MLA, Marvin HUD has continued to advertise with light magazine, which we discussed last week.

[00:39:09] Despite, uh, Andrew Wilkinson saying that he put in an immediate review and it’s, that’s all is amylase to cease advertising,

[00:39:19] Ian Bushfield: press progress notes, right at the bottom, uh, update that Marvin Hunt’s ads did disappear from light magazines, July 20, 20 online articles following the publication of their statement or their story.

[00:39:33] There’s no comment from either Lite magazine or the BC liberals about. And why those got removed, probably because they were embarrassing. However, a noted social conservative, like the most infamous one, Lori thoroughness has repeatedly said he doesn’t care. He’ll advertise wherever he damn well pleases.

[00:39:51] He even managed to go out and told CTV, biblical Christians, follow their Lord in their sexual practice. They don’t attack other people. They don’t condemn other people because Jesus did not condemn other people. They withdraw from sex outside of a marriage between a man and a woman. That has nothing to do with intolerance.

[00:40:07] It has everything to do with following their conscience and following the Lord, he’s basically doubled down. He likes the magazine. I mean, I don’t know how much more legs this story has, but. The weight of the social conservatives on the BC liberals is kind of always going to be there, but at the same time, if they don’t have that base, like if the BC conservatives become the home for social conservatives or some other party, and they pick off 5% of the vote in some key, you know, Metro van writings, it can swing a lot of them.

[00:40:43] Seats to the NDP, the liberals need those votes, but they need to not be embarrassed by those people.

[00:40:49] Scott de Lange Boom: Yeah. And I mean, at this point, Lori throne is just a known quantity, you know, I’m not sure how much his continued existence has grown to really change things one way or the other. So yeah, I expect, we probably won’t be talking about this in the following weeks for the reasons you mentioned, but one idea that we.

[00:41:11] For some reason do keep seeming to talk about. So I can’t imagine why is wet set the worst named political idea, impossibly all Canadian history. Uh, so Abacus has a new poll out asking Canadians, what do they think of Western separation from. Canada unsurprisingly, most Canadians are fond of it. Although there is a bit of a partisan split on this, or at least a split within one of the parties that being the conservatives,

[00:41:48] Ian Bushfield: there is also a regional split where Beckers are most likely to support anyone leaving the country.

[00:41:55] They’re like, yeah, everyone should go. Why not?

[00:41:59] Scott de Lange Boom: Yeah. Well, it’s the same reason. Catalonians have like very favorable views of further than other European separatists example.

[00:42:08] Ian Bushfield: Do the balloons want to separate

[00:42:10] Scott de Lange Boom: maybe? I don’t know. Belgium is a weird mix of desperate cultures, but there’s a reason they have Scotland.

[00:42:16] Scotland. Yeah. There’s a recent, the Catalonians have favorable views, a stronger separation

[00:42:22] Ian Bushfield: breaking into the specific numbers. A 12% of British Colombians. I think that British Columbia separating is a good idea. 13% of Albertans thing, Alberta separating is a good idea. And 10% of both Saskatchewan Manitobans respectively think their problem was events.

[00:42:38] Leaving would be a good idea.

[00:42:40] Scott de Lange Boom: The only reason I think BC is a little higher is because you get like two, two and a half percent of, you know, Diehard Cascadian separatists.

[00:42:49] Ian Bushfield: Well, and it’s like all within a margin of error on this size of survey, the, I could live with it. Samples range from 22 to 26%. It was basically two thirds of people in each province thinks it’s a terrible idea.

[00:43:03] So I kind of think it’s worse. Sticking the nail in this narrative. And we shouldn’t have to talk about it. I did want to bring the survey up because I thought it was interesting to actually have the numbers there. And there was also a bit more press for the WEX it Canada party, because Jay Hill, who is one of Harper’s former government house leaders is now the leader of that party.

[00:43:25] Somehow like, usually it’s like a. Backbencher who goes off and joins these fringe movements, not like someone who got are reasonably prominent position in cap or in caucus.

[00:43:38] Scott de Lange Boom: Maybe he’s just bored in retirement. W wouldn’t be the first time someone takes up a weird hobby when they don’t have other work to occupy themselves with

[00:43:48] Ian Bushfield: Some people start crochet, some people go RVing, some people lead fringe separatist movements.

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