Tuesday, November 20, 2012

BC Liberal Smear Merchants of Doom

Another week and another showing of the pathetic "brain trust" inside the rotting BC Liberal camp.

With the countdown to the May 2013 election the BC Liberal regime is so out of touch with voters it's scary considering how much money they're pouring into media campaigns. The single, most important thing these dummies aren't getting is that the people of BC are NOT interested in negative campaigns. You just have to look at how Christy Clark is polling with women (is it possible to get lower, yes!). The low numbers are for various reasons, but one of those is that women can't stand the negative campaigning style of American-style politics.

Another thing this story illustrates is a truism of the BC Liberal decade of corruption within the BC government - if you do wrong, you will be promoted onwards and upwards.


Emails show website created using government computer network 

A Liberal Party attack website aimed at NDP leader Adrian Dix was crafted by government employees at the B.C. legislature under the watchful eye of the Premier’s Office and a Christy Clark loyalist, a series of government emails obtained by The Province reveal.

Launched by the B.C. Liberal Party in October 2011, the CantAffordDix.ca website featured aggressive assaults on Dix’s character and unflattering photos of the NDP leader.

According to the five-page Government of B.C. Standards of Conduct, caucus employees are free to belong to a political party and offer support to candidates but are not supposed to engage in “political party activities” during working hours.

The policy states that if engaging in political activities, employees “must be able to retain the perception of impartiality in relation to their duties and responsibilities.”

“Employees’ political party activities must be clearly separated from activities related to their employment,” the policy reads. “Employees must not engage in political party activities during working hours or use government facilities, equipment or resources in support of these activities.”


Ian Reid, The Real Story, Nov. 20, 2012.

You know a government is done when it’s first and only instinct when caught doing the wrong thing is to lie.

And that’s exactly where the BC Liberals are today.

Monday, Cassidy Oliver of the Province released a series of emails showing BC Liberal caucus staff doing the heavy work developing one of the BC Liberal Party smear sites.
There are strict rules about party activity by caucus staff, rules supposedly enforced by the (BC Liberal) Speaker.  Developing a Liberal party smearsite is way, way outside those rules.

The BC Liberals sort of acknowledged that but claimed the website was actually developed by a staff member on his own time, on his own computer. Bullshit.

Reading through the government and caucus emails it’s clear that BC Liberal caucus workers, Premier’s office staff and their government paid consultant were developing this website for the BC Liberal party on the public’s dime.

The group working on this project wasn’t just a small group of low level BC Liberal Caucus staff.  It also involved Shane Mills, the Premier’s director of “Issues Management” and Don Millar, who’s $10,000 a month contract with the Premier’s Office for communications advice doesn’t mention developing smear sites.


Why isn't the NDP asking for independent audit?

Michael Smyth, The Province, November 20, 2012.
The government's claim that its staffers worked on a Liberal Party political website "on their own time" is laughable when you examine the email threads.

The emails, disclosed in Monday's paper, show the publicly paid staffers working on the Liberal website during daytime office hours.

All the internal government emails are posted at theprovince.com and I encourage you to read them for yourself for a shocking look at your tax dollars at work.

Thomas Marshall, now "communications co-ordinator" for Premier Christy Clark, took the lead role in developing a Liberal Party attack website targeting NDP Leader Adrian Dix.

In the emails, Marshall brainstorms with his "team" about the name of the website and its content. He talks about getting to work on the actual design, computer coding and launch date of the Liberals' 

The emails were sent using the taxpayer-financed email system.

This was back when Marshall was a "communications officer" for the B.C. government caucus. That's right - he has since been promoted. He hasn't responded to our requests for an interview.

If you're wondering why people would use their government email addresses, while so brazenly breaking the government's own code of conduct standards, consider that these emails are shielded from freedom of information requests.

Under the B.C. Freedom of Information Act, emails among government caucus staff are officially excluded from FOI and kept secret. (The Province obtained the emails outside the FOI process.)

Another person mentioned prominently in the emails is private-sector communications consultant Don Millar. He is a longtime friend of Clark and worked on her Liberal leadership campaign.

In the email exchanges, Millar gives direction to legislature staff about the Liberal Party website, asking Marshall to "develop a schedule for this project."

Why was a private-sector consultant directing the work of public employees? Millar later landed a $10,000-a-month contract with the government. He has also not responded to interview requests.

Why isn't the NDP asking for independent audit?

Read more: http://www.theprovince.com/news/asking+independent+audit/7574215/story.html#ixzz2CmsX3vW

Why isn't the NDP asking for independent audit?

Read more: http://www.theprovince.com/news/asking+independent+audit/7574215/story.html#ixzz2CmsSutj

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