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Maxed Out

A New Era for B.C. Bud

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By G.D. Maxwell

I think it’s pretty clear what’s going on around here. Not around here as in around Whistler or my house or even in the frozen, dumped-on sprawl that is Vancouver – home of the 2010 Olympics – but here as in Victoria, provincial and federal Liberal politics, and the seemingly endless buffoon fest that is the government of Slash "Rear Entry" Gordon.

Given that most Whistleratics have just pinballed through a booze and work binge the rest of the world considers a holiday but I like to think of as one of Dante’s levels of Hell, it might be worthwhile taking a moment to explain what the heck I’m talking about.

Twenty months ago, the Mounties began an investigation into organized crime and drugs. The first 10 months of the investigation were taken up with logistical details. Several of the Mounties had to learn to roll joints, pick up and internalize the lingo of the street, grow out their crew cuts and scuff up their shiny black shoes to "fit" into the criminal element. So, according to Victoria Police Chief Paul Battershill, whose force joined in the investigation, police began actively investigating organized crime and drugs 10 months ago.

Among their findings was the fact there was a rather brisk, cross-border trade: B.C. marijuana for U.S. cocaine. Now, as we all know, there is nowhere in the USofA, outside certain well-known greenhouse operations, where the coca tree grows. Careful not to jump to any rash conclusions, the Mounties painstakingly deduced the B.C. bud was actually being traded for cocaine most likely sourced from Colombia which is, understandably, often confused with British Columbia notwithstanding the fact that Colombians speak Spanish, have great tans, carry automatic weapons and never grow taller than 5’4" whereas British Columbians speak British, are fishbelly white, stockpile weapons of mass-denial and are generally tall enough to reach the Pop Tarts on the highest shelf at the grocery store.

Manipulating all that investigative data through Canada’s only supercomputer – the Beaver, located at the Mounties Regina headquarters and generally used to figure out the intricate movements performed so deftly by the Musical Ride – the Mounties were reluctantly left with the only logical conclusion they could draw. What they’d clearly stumbled into was a massive, politically-driven, Free Trade in the Americas initiative hitherto unknown. Obviously such a well-orchestrated movement of goods and services could only take place with the acquiescence, if not actual involvement, of the leaders of all countries involved.

So the Sunday after Christmas, before church, the Mounties arrested Paul Martin, newly anointed Prime Minister of all Canadians, and issued a fugitive warrant for Gordon Campbell, Premie of B.C. who was back in Maui at the time serving out the court-ordered community service punishment for his drunk driving arrest last Christmas. The local Maui newspapers were already having a field day running pictures of Slash, decked out in his colourful hibiscus-festooned, county prison issue jumpsuit with his Hawaiian name – 03-02659 – embroidered on the back, chain-ganged to a necklace of muggers, thugs and thieves, picking up discarded Big Mac™ wrappers along the tropical roadside.

Naw. I’m kidding about that. Just wanted to see if you were paying attention.

Heck, this is Canada. The RCMP wouldn’t arrest the leaders of the country and the province. Okay, they wouldn’t arrest the leader of the country. In B.C., the leader of the province gets arrested pretty regularly for one thing or another, B.C. being the only province where the Mounties actually have a special unit – known colloquially as the Crimes of Sleaze Unit or CSU for short – dedicated full-time to investigating crooked politicians.

The CSU hasn’t actually arrested any provincial politicians but they did ferret out some wannabes and hangers-on. Executing search warrants for "…certain offices and places known or suspected to contain information possibly related to the ongoing investigation… and or tightly-rolled $100 bills…." the CSU stormed the provincial legislature in Victoria, seizing boxes of files, computers, a collection of kiddie porn big enough according to one officer to "choke a horse" …. No wait a minute, I’m reading the wrong press release again. Strike the kiddie porn reference.

Anyway, they took a load of stuff from the offices of David Basi, ministerial assistant to Finance Minister Gary Collins – who was, ironically, also in Maui, having been asked by Slash to accompany him for high level budget talks and to be the designated driver just in case Slash fell off the wagon – and Robert Virk, an assistant to Transportation Minister Judith Reid, who wasn’t in Maui but had arranged with a local transportation company to shadow both the Premier and the Finance Minister just in case they both got blotto and needed yet an undesignated-designated driver.

The two ministerial assistants, who immediately claimed they "don’t know nuttin’ ‘bout birthin’ babies or organized crime, drug profits and the new Prime Minister…" apparently squealed like schoolgirls and gave up Mark Marissen, who was B.C. campaign chairman for Paul Martin’s leadership coronation and just happens to be married to Deputy Premier Christy Clark, who claims to not even know for sure where Maui is, and Bruce Clark, chief B.C. fundraiser for Mr. Martin, who is Christy’s brother and is reported to have said he’s sorry she ever married into politics.

So, where does this leave us. Well, we’re not sure. In a typical case of Canadian Blind Justice, all the documents relating to the search warrants were sealed. The Mounties claim this Star Chamber secrecy is necessary to protect their endless, um, on-going investigation and, of course, to keep from embarrassing the usual gang of suspects.

But, as I said when I started this tour de fantasie, I think it’s pretty clear what’s going on around here. Slash Gordon can’t handle booze; we all know that. B.C. Bud™ is the third largest business in the province, trailing only political corruption and kiddie porn but well ahead of logging and tourism.

Paul Martin, having finally thrown off the shackles of living the frustrated dream of his dearly-departed father, is a closet hippie. Hey, the guy takes foreign policy briefings from Bono for chrissakes. Paul desperately wants to leave his mark on Canada before he’s revealed for the fraud he is or dies from arteriosclerosis hastened by too many $1,000-a-plate fundraising dinners.

And consider this tidbit. Unsubstantiated rumour has it the official Prime Ministerial limo was seen sporting an "I’m Packing The Bud" unofficial 2010 Vancouver Olympics bumper sticker.

Clearly Paul has turned Slash on to a better high, one he can maybe handle and drive at the same time. Slash, who will do just about anything to be even closer to real power, inhaled immediately. They’re both funding a covert effort to (1) get re-elected, (2) reduce the provincial and federal debt, and (3) court a hitherto overlooked constituency by siphoning drug money into politics, legalizing first pot then other drugs, and springing the newly-repackaged Canada: More Than Cool! on an unsuspecting world.

I’d have a good look at Slash’s luggage when he comes back from Maui if I were running Customs.