(Update: On August 29, 2012 Shirley Bond was actually named finance minister. Seriously Shirley Bond was actually named finance minister. Theres absolutely no way cabinet ministers of her calibre can run their own departments. They have to be taking orders from outside.)
Attorney General Shirley Bond
Four words that question the independence of a key ministry
Sept. 10, 2011
Portraits of complacency:
B.C. Solicitor General/Attorney General (now Justice Minister and Attorney General)
Shirley Bond has a childish, self-satisfied smile and little else.
Theres something revealing about the fact that a person of Shirley Bonds meagre abilities can be both solicitor general and attorney general of British Columbia. Theres no indication that she can run either of those ministries. She has to be taking orders from above. But from whom?
Bond has always given the impression that shes a person of possibly average intelligence with no thoughts about public policy. Her interest in politics seems limited to revelling in the perks of office. In all those respects she resembles probably most BC Liberal MLAs.
These are people who proved to be subservient yes-men and yes-women under Gordon Campbell. They went along with everything The Boss (as they called him) decided, even as the party betrayed its initial image of fiscal concern for working people and small businesses. Instead the BC Liberals became a tax-and-spend party favouring corporations. If BC Liberal MLAs ever did care about policy, they stopped once Campbell began dictating every aspect of every policy for every ministry sometimes even planning new legislation without informing the cabinet minister involved.
So it didnt matter who was solicitor general. Like most other ministries, the job required a person of modest abilities who simply followed orders orders which suited the police status quo and the private security industry. Direction comes from above. Day-to-day advice and support comes from the ministers senior staff, made up largely of ex-cops.
As if to highlight the ministers insignificance, the job changed hands frequently. Bond is the BC Liberals tenth solicitor general, if you include the two ex-cops whove each been appointed to the position more than once.
It doesnt matter whether Bond, any of her predecessors or any other BC Liberal time-server holds the SG position. That shows in the recently amended Police Act creating the Independent Investigations Office. It was tailor-made to uphold the police status quo, probably at the behest of a powerful police lobby.
But until Bonds appointment, the attorney generals job required a law degree, law experience and some stature in the field of law. Bond has none of that. Shes just a yes-woman, of at best middling intelligence, who loves the perks of office.
So who actually calls the shots for her department?
Under the Campbell regime, the premier called the shots, as he did for every ministry. He did so on behalf of his favourite special interest groups, but he was the one deciding policies. He was intelligent enough to understand them, even if he misjudged their political impact.
But under Christy Clark, B.C. has a new premier closer in intelligence and abilities to the Campbell yes-people. Shes proven herself confused, uninformed, indecisive and not particularly bright.
Where she differs from the partys yes-people is in her temperament. She very obviously cherishes her role as the new boss.
She has the BC Liberals usual corporate backers supporting her and a slew of unsavoury associations. But, according to a number of sources including Alex Tsakumis (who claims inside info from the BC Liberal caucus), Michael Smyth and Vaughn Palmer, among others, she shows little or no evidence of policy ideas. Lots of vanity maybe, but no ideas.
(Interestingly, Clark lost the previous attorney general, a person of above-average abilities by BC Liberal standards, because of her indecisiveness on the election call and maybe also (Tsakumis suggests) because of her bad judgement and worse temper.)
So we have one sub-mediocrity in the key ministry of attorney general and another in the top job of premier. Whos really calling the shots?
Update: As B.C.s legal system teeters on the brink of disaster, Shirley Bond has neither the heft nor the understanding of the law, the system and the players to tackle these issues. In other words, shes incompetent...
Another update: Ms. Bond is manifestly unqualified, and therefore ineligible, to fulfill the requirements of attorney-general and solicitor-general of British Columbia, says a complaint to the B.C. Law Society. Almost as damning, Leonard Krog sticks up for her. More...
Feb. 8, 2012: Despite being manifestly unqualified and incompetent, Bond now has a new title as her dual role of solicitor general and attorney general is formalized in a new ministry. Shes now justice minister and attorney general.
March 29, 2012: Now shes in even further over her head. Bonds excuses dont stand up as she blocks the auditor general from examining the $6-million BC Rail payoff. More...
Shirley Bond should never have been made attorney general as she is totally unqualified for the job and if she had a kernel of decency shed resign immediately. More...
Bond sounds pathetically weak as the RCMP continue to dump their thugs and perverts on B.C. More…
Is it because she’s incompetent or corrupt? Bond can’t or won’t answer questions about the $6-million BC Rail Basi/Virk payoff. More…
Bond screwed up so badly with the Wood Innovation and Design Centre corruption scandal that even some BC Liberals want her fired. More…
“Bond has, thus far, been quite successful in separating herself from this scandal – but not anymore.” More…
Sept. 17, 2011 update:
This guy could be Bonds replacement?
According to Vancouver Sun reporter Jonathan Fowlie, a Coquitlam lawyer named Michael Hwang might become B.C.s next attorney general.
Fowlie says Hwangs an interesting candidate because of his strong community credentials... founder and president of the North Road Business Improvement Association, a co-chair of the Korean Heritage Day Festival and a volunteer with the Boys & Girls Clubs of B.C.
Just the qualifications required to oversee criminal justice, family law, legal aid, court administration and legal services to government, among other responsibilities.
Heres a Hwang pensée, courtesy of Fowlie:
If different horses run and were divided then were shooting ourselves in the foot.
After mangling that metaphor, Hwang actually said:
I would never dare even think of following in the footsteps of Mike de Jong and other prestigious people who have come before me.
De Jong was a prestigious attorney general? Hes probably best known for his contradictory lies about the governments $6-million payoff to stop the BC Rail trial.
To his partial credit, Hwang added: I am not a barrister, Im a solicitor so Im also probably not qualified.
Probably not qualified?
Again the question arises: If we have a premier of no distinction, if mediocrities like de Jong and sub-mediocrities like Bond can be attorney general, and another sub-mediocrity like Hwang can be considered for attorney general, whos really in charge?
Sept. 20, 2011 update:
What could be worse than Shirley Bond?
Legislature laughing stock Harry Bloy
Whether a cabinet minister or a light-duty backbencher,
Harry Bloy proved incapable of thinking for himself.
But he was willing to at least try to follow orders and
for that he stays in the taxpayers trough for life.
Thats the entire point of being a BC Liberal.
This guy shows that anyone absolutely anyone can get a BC Liberal cabinet position. Obviously these arent the people who make decisions or run their own departments. They simply follow orders.
That must also apply to MLAs who serve on committees. Again Bloy provides an example. He sat on the committee that unanimously appointed Dziekanski death squad supporter Stan Lowe police complaint commissioner.
Pay, perks and perceived status thats all these nobodies care about.
Sept. 26, 2011 update: Clark finally demoted Bloy to Minister of State for Multiculturalism or something.
In a sense, Hapless Harry was correct in saying his only faults were his laughable performance during Question Period and media scrums. He had no responsibilities other than posing as the front man for his ministry.
But he was even more laughable when he tried to say he did good work behind the scenes. He probably did no work behind the scenes, other than trying to follow orders. Theres no indication that he understood his departments work and BC Liberal cabinet ministers have no say in anything anyway. Day-to-day operations are run by senior bureaucrats and policy is directed from above. Most cabinet ministers are nobodies who do little other than talk to the legislature and media, using talking points that are scripted by others.
Bloys fault wasnt that he didnt know anything. By BC Liberal ministerial standards, his only fault was that he couldnt memorize, let alone understand, a script written for no-nothings.
So now that policy wonk Gordon Campbell is gone, who makes policy decisions? Christy Clark might not be as dumb as Harry Bloy but shes probably not much smarter than Shirley Bond. More than ever before, B.C. is at risk from dangerously dumb decisions made on behalf of selfish special interests.
And it really looks like a powerful police lobby calls the shots for B.C.s Office of the Police Complaint Commissioner and the Independent Investigations Office.
March 15, 2012 updates: Bloy finally proved that hes too stupid and underhanded even for a BC Liberal junior cabinet position. He got caught leaking confidential government info to a party donor. Maybe Bloy was pushed into this by the same unelected sociopath who pushed him into supporting Premier Christy Clarks leadership campaign (and who therefore pushed Bloy into a cabinet position way over his head). But Bloy shows how easily low-IQ, ethically challenged politicians can be pushed around.
Clark says Bloy wont run for office again. Michael Smyth says he should resign as MLA right now. But regardless of what Bloy does and despite his ludicrous career, the guy gets a big fat pension. And thats the whole point of being a BC Liberal. The party has degenerated to the level of dishonest, low-IQ opportunists who care for nothing but pay, perks, perceived status and pensions. And, getting back to the subject of police accountability, this IQ/ethics deficit explains why Bloy so readily did what he was told and helped appoint Taser-advocate and lethal-force apologist Stan T. Lowe as B.C.s police complaint commissioner. Heres just one example of Lowes ethical deficit.
March 17, 2012 update: Dumb, dumber and dumbest, in ascending order to Bloy. His IQ/ethics deficit also involves the BC Rail scandal.
April 17, 2012 update: Bloy blunders again. While reading a ghost-written speech pumping BC Hydro, Bloy suddenly tried to express his own thoughts. Thats where he went wrong. His job is to just follow orders. More...
Then again, maybe Bloy was following orders. More...
March 5, 2013 update: Bloy’s blunders never cease. Who was supposedly responsible for the B.C. government multiculturalism racket during ethnogate? None other than “the premier’s hand-picked serial bungler, Harry Bloy.” More…
It’s an exceedingly rare sight — a BC Liberal riding public transit. Except of course for photo ops, very few BC Libs use transit, and then only on occasion. I’ve never met any who’ve ever used transit regularly.
So I was incredulous to see now-retired but forever hapless Harry on the SkyTrain the afternoon of July 15. When he left, he showed he doesn’t limit his colossal blundering to politics.
He exited the train at Burrard station, the last or one of the last passengers to leave. By that time a solid mass of people was on the platform facing him, waiting to come on board. Anyone else would have walked around the crowd or, maybe, turned half-sideways to try to slip between people. But not our Harry.
Incredibly, awkwardly, stupidly, he just walked forward as if there was nothing in his way. Naturally he didn’t get far before he collided with people. At the same time he managed to tangle his right arm with the right arm of a guy in a suit, one of the crowd facing the train. Bloy just stood there, not even trying to untangle himself from this self-imposed mess.
While Bloy stood motionless, the other guy used his left hand to grab Bloy’s right arm and actually moved the offending limb away from his own, as if Bloy’s arm was some kind of inanimate object. Then the guy leaned forward, turned and shoved Bloy hard on the back of the shoulder.
The shove seemed to propel Bloy forward, as he resumed blundering his way through the crowd.
Maybe someone close to him should get power of attorney over his gold-plated pension and hire Bloy a babysitter.
The next day the Vancouver Province reported more news about Bloy and the unelected sociopath who controls him.
Then the Vancouver Sun came out with this.
Then this: “Let's face it, Brian Bonney and Harry Bloy and whomever have all been thoroughly discredited,” says BC Liberal MLA Ralph Sultan. But servile, low-IQ politicians like Harry Bloy serve the BC Liberals’ special interests well.
This is the speaker of the legislature?
Deputy Speaker Linda Reid waited far too long
before ineffectually chiding Bloy for his disgraceful conduct,
then watched with bovine stupidity while he repeated his idiocy.
Vacant, unalert, incompetent and just plain dumb-looking
and dumber-sounding Reid is a BC Liberal. More...
And, as for the premier...
Clark and her $130,000-a-year friend, whose claim to fame
is that she used to read TV news scripts: Not a sign
of intelligence in those vacuous faces.
Clark and police lobbyist Tom Stamatakis:
He doesnt look stupid. So who really calls the shots?