After much prodding by other bloggers, I set this up for my own writings. The name is in honour of the two women that mentored me throughout my life on politics and intelligence issues, as well as being wonderful family members, now alas deceased. I hope to live up to their standards at this site.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Vellacott resigns, but refuses to accept any responsibility for his highly improper actions

I went and read through Maurice Vellacott's resignation letter from his position as chair of the Aboriginal affairs committee and was more than a little disgusted by it. In it he claims that it was not his comments about the Chief Justice that motivated his resignation but only the highly bitter partisanship of a Liberal member of the committee and the Liberal party generally via the raising of some of his prior comments on some aboriginal issues, particularly his conduct in the case of the Saskatoon police officers leaving aboriginals out to freeze to death. What complete and utter hogwash! Let's take this argument apart for a moment. These were comments that were raised before he became chair and yet he was elected chair despite them. So to claim that suddenly they are the problem is clearly nonsense. It is however cover for the far more serious offence he committed over the last weekend.

Let us remember what Vellacott did. He claimed that the Chief Justice made certain comments and he *DIRECTLY* attributed them to her as a direct quote, not a paraphrase of his own. It is this that got him in trouble. When challenged to show exactly where the Chief Justice said any such thing all Vellacott could do was hand out her NZ speech from last year and tell reporters to look for themselves in it and they would find it, that it was not his job to show journalists exactly where these words were. Well, they did go through that speech and nowhere could those words be found in her speech that Vellacott had attributed to her. Indeed, nothing even closely similar could be found. So in other words Vellacott put words in her mouth to portray her in a manner unfit for any member of the Supreme Court, You know something? This reminds me of another example by a CPC MP to place words in the mouths of political enemies (and Vellacott clearly sees the courts as an enemy, as do many in his party including his leader by his own prior comments in the election and before) that upon examination turned out to be false. I wonder if anyone reading this cannot infer to what I am thinking of...

Yes, you got it, the Grewal fraud last year. While some differences exist in the precise details of how it was done, the bottom line is that in both cases a CPC MP made false statements regarding the top of one of the branches of government and when it came out that this was the case the CPC refused to discipline the MP in question, refused to refute that MP's actions, and refused to apologize to those being falsely smeared. In Grewal's case there was selective editing to make it appear that the PMO was willing to use Senate seats as an inducement for two MPs to change their votes. In this case we have an MP claiming he is quoting a Chief Justice of the Supreme Court accurately yet upon examination no such comments by the Chief Justice can be found. In both cases the MP in question never explained their conduct and never apologized to those that they slandered. In both cases the leader of the CPC did nothing to discipline the MP in question for their conduct and their clearly besmirching the name of the CPC. In both cases we see a CPC MP slandering political enemies without any actual basis to be doing so, and a very lackluster response by the party leadership for it, indeed in the Grewal case the party ran with it for several weeks until the fraud/editing was exposed and it became clear that the criminal allegation of Senate seat selling was fraudulently created by someone in the CPC from recordings which unedited make clear no such consideration was ever on the table from the Liberal side even despite Grewal's repeated trying to place it on the table.

So now Maurice Vellacott resigns and instead of accepting any responsibility for his own bad conduct instead continues to blame his political enemies. He refuses to apologize to someone he slandered, someone that only happens to be the top judicial authority in this country, He claims that his comments had nothing to do with his resignation which flies clearly in the face of reality given this problem started with his weekend comments and continued from them. He claims it was because of his deep respect for aboriginal issues and his fears of bitter partisanship by Liberals as the sole motivation for his resignation of this chairmanship despite his only having it for a matter of weeks, AND his asking for it in the first place. At every turn Vellacott has refused to accept any responsibility for his own words and actions and instead projects his failings upon everyone else. Hardly an example of the personal accountability that Conservatives like to trumpet is part of their basic ethical/political beliefs and that no other party supposedly has in their makeup. Vellacott is again insulting the intelligence of Canadians when he argues that his comments about the Chief Justice were not the reason he was forced to resign, a resignation that came hours before the committee would have likely passed a vote of no confidence in him as chair which would have almost certainly ended up in his loss of the chair anyway. This is not being responsible, and it was not being accountable, it was fighting until the last minute to keep his job and the recognition that he would not survive this vote. It would also have been the first time such a vote had occured that would have passed in committee regarding non confidence in the chair in our history, or at least that was how the media were reporting on this point. So Vellacott apears to have resigned to prevent himself from going down in Canadian history as the first such chair to lose a vote of non confidence in his position of chair, something that would have helped weaken what political capital this man has left. It also would have damaged the CPC government itself for being the first government to have this happen to one of their own chairs.

It is also important though to consider the actions of Prime Minister Harper in all of this. This Prime Minister recommended this man to head this committee, so he must bear some of the responsibility for this man's actions. It brings into question the judgment of the Prime Minister that he appointed this man and defended this man on his prior aboriginal comments, and refused to do anything to discipline this MP for making up fictitious quotes of the Chief Justice other than say he was speaking for himself and not the government as a whole. This PM still has not required his MP to apologize for his clearly false claims about what the Chief Justice supposedly said, nor has he required this MP to publicly acknowledge that the Chief Justice did not say what Vellacott claimed she did. This shows a clear lack of leadership by the PM, as well as his likely agreement with Vellacott regarding the court, especially the Supreme Court. This is not the conduct of a PM that believes in this country, this is the action of a coward that refuses to chance upsetting the element in his base that agrees with the idea that the courts are the enemy of Conservatives, EVEN when it is clear that the MP was in the wrong and has acted in a clearly dishonest and disreputable manner.


Anonymous Niles said...

Riiiiiight. He's dedicated to the support and healing of Precious Suffering Aboriginal people, at the cost of time with his own family, but he can't take the heat from one little woman on the committee, /despite/ the co-operative natures of the others on the committee. The Satanic pact-like power of the Liberal in the room overwhelmed his Righteous strength and fervor to do The-Right-Thing. And all that suffering is now on her head. And she dresses funny.

And btw, it has nothing to do with his completely false statements about the Chief Justice. So there.

He'll just take his ball and go play on another committee, which he's sure to get from his good friend Hill. And be welcomed on. Which won't have any Liberals on it. Unless it does, in which case he'll ask to be put on another committee. Again. So help him God.


Thu May 11, 06:35:00 PM 2006  

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