Saturday, May 10, 2008

Two for The Sun

Daphne Bramham and Miro Cernetig have written excellent pieces in this morning's paper.

Bramham spells out the new and growing tactic amongst the politicos and mandarins of launching expensive lawsuits against their critics.

Nanaimo, Kent, Harrison, and Langford are four of the municipalities mentioned.

In each case, a citizen asks legitimate questions of the powers-that-be. In case, the powers sue.

They are emboldened to do so by a 2004 provincial law that allows for something called a SLAPP - a Strategic Lawsuit against Public Participation.

But wait.

Isn't public participation a virtue in a healthy democracy?

Oh, I forgot, in BC and Canerda, "healthy democracy" is becoming as oxymoronic as Catholic University, happy marriage, military intelligence and liquor control board.

Cernetig rightly points out that the millions of dollars and years of abject failure in the DTES call for a new approach, perhaps one overseer or czar for all things DTES.

Exceellent piece and good idea.

But who?

Michael Clague is mentioned. Bad idea. Clague was the director of the Carnegie Centre for years, which means he made a healthy living in the midst of the madness.

No, we need someone completely outside the sphere.

Michael Geller whom is running for city council would do a great job.

Or someone from another side of the continent, who owes no favours.

Whoever it is, sooner is better than later.


Anonymous said...

A few years ago in Sooke, a developer won a lawsuit against opponents of his proposed development.
Some of those opponents were retirees, who ended up losing their homes to pay the damages.
Another developer sued a village north of Penticton for 2 million dollars for nixing his project.
The result were many homeowners saw huge increases on their tax bill to pay for the lawsuit, and again retirees were forced to sell.
This is one reason I am staying clear of joining any anti-development association, or letters to the paper. It may come back to bite you.

PelaLusa said...

And in a strange coincidence, I was just reading this posting by Ezra Levant where he mentioned the SLAPP acronym for totally unrelated lawsuits.

Must we enter a great period of darkness before we can return to the principles we once thought were permanent?