Saturday, July 7, 2012

The case of the S & M Mountie raises some very deep and important issues.

What part of anyone's life is private?

What are your personal sex life and choices to do with me?

Why did JFK and countless Presidents before him have many mistresses without the knowing press exposing them, while no modern President could possibly escape public attention for "wandering?"

Must police, athletes, entertainers, celebrities, teachers, politicians (who are, after all, law makers) and judges hold to a higher standard than labourers or ornithologists?

There may or may not be ready answers to these and similar questions and there may or may not be a broad general principal available in such inquiries.

But in this specific instance, I think the lines are reasonably clear.

The fact that Cpl. Brown enjoys torture sex scenes in his private life is not only no concern of mine, but please, sir, don't bore me with your war stories. I have no interest. And you have the right to engage in any sexual practices that are consensual and do not result in injury or death.


1. Putting yourself "out there" on video is just flat stupid. It could also be interpreted as the height of narcissism and ego or a pathetic cry for help. Whatever it might be, it's shamefully idiotic. Which alone gives one pause to consider how much I want this fellow charged with protecting me.

2. The officer was somehow in the mix of the earliest part of the investigation into the horrendous Pickton murders of women. So, let me see if I understand this, because it's starting to feel like a case for Lisbeth Salander of Dragon Tattoo fame. A police officer who gets his sexual pleasures from torturing or pretending to torture and slice up women is somehow on the scene and knowledgeable about the worst torturer of women in local history. Now, we can be really worried.

Our Provincial Justice Minister, Shirley Bond, has weighed in on these events:

S&M Mountie won't be asked to quit

 But Bond disappointed by officer's actions
Excuse me?
No one deserves to lose his or her job without due process, but I am hearing no noises off that this officer is being thoroughly investigated. Yes, there is some inquiry, but what is it?

If this man's personal behaviour has not sullied an already much battered force, what heinous actions would it take?

If ever transparency was called for it is now. much about the Pickton case has refused to come to light. 

Will we ever learn which upstanding citizens were regular guests at the party?


There are many things to admire about Maui and to enjoy while there.

At the top of the list is that all beaches and beach access are public.

There are countless private and gorgeous homes and dozens of fabulous, pricey resorts, all hugging the seashore.

But all people, including Canadian visitors of less modest means, staying in relatively affordable condos for a week or two can have their morning and evening walks along the open ocean front or swim or body surf in any of the local waters.

This may not be the case along all American coast lines; I have no idea.

But it is a refreshingly democratic notion and one that I think most of us cherish.

Which brings us to this headline:

Point Grey Road seawall proposal draws mixed reaction

Some residents worry about environmental degradation, but others say a public walkway would reduce traffic congestion

This notion should be a no-brainer.

Of course, we should be able to walk and bicycle along the shore from Kits Beach to Jericho and beyond. Duh?

Any opposition is only about greed and status.


Now, let's see what of what stuff Vancouver City Council and Parks Board are made?


A Word of Explanation

The Vancouver Province has pulled from its website the animation (shown below) created by its editorial cartoonist, Dan Murphy, that satirizes Enbridge's massive ad campaign in support of its Northern Gateway pipeline.

In the original ad, Enbridge claims that the pipeline is "a path to our future," while families and fish frolic in sylvan settings to placid music. In the parody, a fictional official comments with increasing distress as the ad is repeatedly interrupted with giant oil splotches.

Wayne Moriarty, The Province's Editor-in-Chief, says the animation was removed at the request of Enbridge "because it contains copyrighted material." He admits that use of the material might be protected under fair use laws, but says the newspaper chose not to pursue the matter. He points out that The Province has run editorials critical of the pipeline, and insists that the decision to pull the satire has nothing to do with the $5 million campaign, which is running in his paper and The Vancouver Sun (both of which are owned by The Pacific Newspaper Group), among many other media outlets.

Moriarty denies a rumour that Murphy has been fired because of the cartoon. Murphy was not available for comment.