Thursday, January 20, 2011
Another Kash Heed Scandal
Well Kash Heed made the front page of the Vancouver Sun yesterday with another breaking "scandal." Is that guy in or is he out? First he resigned pending an investigation. Then he was back in after being cleared in the investigation. Then he was out again because the person in charge of his investigation was one of his campaign contributors.
I guess he's back in cause the Sun talked about another scandal that wasn't really a scandal but hell, we live for the political drama in BC why not call it one just because. Actually there are two new scandals involving good old Kash. First is the breach of trust charge which claims he used public funds for political purposes.
Oh but wait, who's making the charge? Why it's the RCMP the federal police force that don't want him to turn their force in BC into a Regional one. Isn't that a conflict of interest? Isn't this charge coming from the RCMP a conflict of interest? Yet if he really is guilty of criminal conduct, who else can charge him? A regional police force he created? I'm sure that would be a conflict of interest too. My oh my aren't we conflicted.
OK setting the sarcasm aside momentarily, here's the charge. New MLA's are given moving allowances to spend on furniture and what not. Kash had his own furniture so he signed over the cheque for the furniture to two people who worked for him during his campaign. The RCMP admit it was "free" money because he was entitled to it but didn't spend it on on furniture he spent it on something else. $6,000.00. I don't see that as a very big scandal. Not that I support Kash Heed at all. I'm just cynical about much of what's happening in our political landscape.
Here's the scam. Turns out that the two people he paid using his free money were involved in making that "illegal" anti-NDP pamphlet "he knew nothing about." Big freakin surprise. OK so he's caught with guile. He lied and said he didn't know anything about that nasty anti-NDP pamphlet his campaign office handed out during his election.
Kinda like how Peter MaCkay lied when everyone freaked about his humorous comment during heckling in the house referring to his ex who crossed over to the other political party the night she dumped him as a dog. They were debating the clean air act and the opposition cat calls and yells out this will be good for everyone. Think about your dog. Then Peter points to Belinda Stronach's empty seat on the other side of the house and yells back You already have her.
It was a witty come back. Yet he lied and denied he said it when it was caught on tape. Big deal. It was a funny comment given the circumstances lying about it isn't really necessary. I will note that MacKay has sure stepped up in the world with his new dinner date. Wow. Anyways, back on topic.
Kash Heed knew full well HIS campaign office was sending out those anti-NDP drama flyers that someone has deemed "Illegal." I can't remember all of what was in it, but it was pretty typical right wing rhetoric and stereotypes about the NDP. Stuff like "the NDP are soft on crime" and "the NDP want to legalize drugs." I'm sure some NDP wanted to legalize marijuana. We know the green party does and many federal liberals. The NDP being soft on crime is a common stereotype. It's really not surprising they made the erroneous claim in an election flyer. In reality the BC NDP have been a lot better on crime than the BC Liberals like Wally didn't get reelected for a reason Oppal who said everything was fine.
So the "big" scandal is Kash Heed knew about the pamphlet and paid people in his campaign for it with money he was given to spend on new furniture. Whatever. Now that we've got that out of our system let's look at the next Kash Heed scandal involving Catherine Urquhart.
Global BC TV news reporter Catherine Urquhart is being taken off the air pending a review into whether she breached any journalistic standards. The decision comes after a recently unsealed search warrant revealed an email exchange between Urquhart and former solicitor-general Kash Heed's campaign manager Barinder Sall.
Here is the intercepted private e-mail conversation between them that became unsealed in a search warrant and was published in the paper for the world to see:
"I can honestly say Kash would not be SG [solicitor-general] today if it hadn’t been for some key people behind the scenes,” Sall wrote to Urquhart on June 10, 2009.
“There were only truly 3 people that played a major role: Me, Peter Dhillon and yourself and Kash knows this,” he added.
"Peter was the money guy, I’m the brown tanned James Bond strategy girl-chasing guy and you were like the communications director . . . your stories, coverage and timing gave Kash a lot of profile and built him a following from day 1 at West Van and then leading into the election.”
In response, Urquhart wrote: “Hey . . . that’s really sweet of you. Have to say — there were a number of people along the way (cops and reporters — mostly cops) who seemed to have it out for Kash. But I always believed he was a good guy. I’m truly glad it worked out! C”
The guy is thanking a reporter for writing positive things about his client. She expressed her opinion that some, "mostly cops" had it in for him. Ooooo big surprise there. Why would the RCMP have it in for him? Because he was talking about creating a Regional Police force. Something I'm not really in support of because the idea of Gordon Campbell or most of our former BC Premiers being in charge of their own police force is somewhat frightening for me to conceive of.
Sall claiming to be the brown tanned James Bond strategy girl-chasing guy is a bit of a gag me with a spoon flirt but come on... this is a private e-mail. Does privacy not exist in our intrusive world any more? Don't give me any of this unethical journalism nonsense.
She printed some articles in support of Kash Heed. Maybe she and her newsroom supported his candidacy. Oooo maybe she and or they support a Regional Police force? Heaven forbid. Media outlets support candidates all the time. Why on earth do you think Harper is trying to create a Fox News North now that they have relaxed the truthful reporting requirement.
Why the Vancouver Sun supported Wally Opal for the position of the Pickton inquiry. Does that make them guilty of unethical news reporting? Of course not. It makes them guilty of having and expressing an opinion which up until recently was a Charter right in this country.
Give her a break. Having to listen to Salls flirts just to get a story has been enough punishment for her. Don't take away her charter right. That would be a very bad precedent for all of us. Catherine Urquhart could well be another Tamara Taggart.
Personally I don't support the B.C. Liberals or Kash Heed. I don't support a Regional Police force either. I support a publicly accountable police force on all levels. Federal, Provincial and Municipal. Let's not turn Kash Heed into a talk show celebrity either by letting him turn the Kelowna RCMP assault into a campaign for a Regional Police Force. Let's just take it for what it is and make all police forces publicly accountable.
Oh brother here we go again. Another Kash Heed scandal. That guy keeps digging himself in deeper and deeper.
And deeper and deeper. Looks like he'll be a flash in the pan fading memory. I'm glad Catherine Urquhart is staying on. Criminal investigation give me a break. Private e-mail. If the guy that was hitting on her publicly claimed she was responsible for Heeds election then she should have denied it. It was just a passing comment by a nit that was hitting on her and she was trying to keep it professional.