Money Talks, Bull$#!% Walks

Monday Magazine reports:

Elections BC records show that the boys of Bear Mountain seem particularly smitten with the Liberal’s campaign, as players associated with the luxury golf-course development have opened up their wallets.

Bear Mountain Master Partnership sent the Liberals a cheque for $24,900. Les Bjola’s Turner Lane Development Corporation added $10,000 to the BC Libs’ kitty, a sum matched by Bear Mountain’s vice president of corporate and legal affairs Philip LeSeur through a numbered company of which he is sole proprietor. Len Barrie threw in $2,000 of his own cash, and Dale Sproule, the project’s director of real estate, kicked in $335.

A little further down the slope where the South Skirt Mountain project is underway, Russ Trace, through a combination of his Capital City Paving company and personal donations, kicked in $2,300 to the Libs re-election efforts.

Even Langford mayor Stew Young got in on the action, making a $1,500 donation through his Evergreen Industries, the alternate business name of his company Alpine Disposal and Recycling.

With former Colwood mayor and West Shore development aficionado Jody Twa running against the NDP’s John Horgan in the riding, it only makes sense his old friends would help the cause.

Meanwhile, no record could be found in Elections BC’s filings as to whether the Last Tree in Langford had scraped together enough cash to donate to its own preservation.

White People Artifacts Delay New Development

Breaking news! (That happens to be TRUE this time!) It seems the proposed South Skirt Mountain development is on hold (for a week or two, maybe) as contractors map and survey the steep bluffs on the western edge of the hill for the wreckage of a 1967 plane crash.

WTF Langford? got the tip from alert observers who spotted the consultants skulking through the brush near the gravel pit north of Amy Road. Now journalist Ross Crockford confirms that the area is listed as a provincial heritage site.

Last year, Crockford, a contributor to Victoria Boulevard magazine and other fine local journals, visited the crash site and interviewed the families of the two men who were lost. The report and photos are posted on his blog, Unknown Victoria.

The plane was a water bomber piloted by Alex Davidson and Paddy Moore, the Flying Fireman. They were answering an emergency call about a fire near Goldstream Park on a hot day in July when the plane went down.

"The plane crash site is technically considered a protected area for heritage protection," Crockford said. He explained that every plane crash and shipwreck site gets a provincial designation that sets a two-kilometer-wide buffer zone around the site as a protected area.

What next? If the developers don't get a waiver that allows them to develop within two kilometers of the site, it has been suggested that they should create a memorial park and leave the crash site undisturbed.

And the 8,000-year-old grave sites on the mountain should get the same respect. Amen.

Leave Jody Twa#$% Alone!

Look, people, since I was nine years old I've had to deal with this joke about adding a T to the end of my name, and I'll tell you what, it's not funny anymore. There's only one T in my name, OK? Just because there's a big blank space on the campaign sign begging to get filled, don't do it. These signs are expensive and my financiers can only afford to buy me so many. It's just plain mean, and calling someone a "twa#$% waffle" in public is probably the most tasteless thing I've ever heard, so please stop it.

Let's talk about real issues, like my role in Colwood's "economic miracle." Er, well, actually, I have nothing to say about that. But those sign vandals really make me mad.

Fun with Google Ads!

It's spring, and Bear Mountain Resort is running Google ads everywhere on the interwebs! We don't have any real ads here on WTF Langford? - but maybe it's time we got some. Look at all the fun we could have!

Click the image to enjoy the
full-size screen capture.

The One-Legged Mayor and the Ass-Kicking Contest

Congratulations to Stew Young, who (we hear) is the campaign manager for Liberal party candidate Jody Twa, best known for his stewardship of Colwood's economic miracle disaster. Well! This has the makings of a fine comedy.

OK, we know Langford Mayor Stew Young doesn't literally have one leg. What we mean is, he's barely got a leg to stand on. His city is divided. To be blunt, at least as many people hate him as love him. (Except, the haters don't vote as often.) So what does Young bring to Twa's campaign, other than his good looks and charming personality? Big-money backers, we suppose. But as we've seen recently, big money is not enough to win elections. In fact, our analysis suggests that Twa's close ties to big corporate backers like Bear Mountain Resort could make him a target for a backlash against the culture of political favouritism.

In any case, according to our esteemed WTF? political panel, Young's supporters are basically the same as Twa's, so he's preaching to the converted rather than bringing in new voters. But Young will definitely draw the haters! That's why our blue-ribbon experts conclude that Young may actually lose votes for Twa. Whoops!

And how will a brazenly partisan Liberal mayor help Langford's citizens? What if the Liberals don't form the next government? Wouldn't that make his relations with the province a bit awkward? And how will he resolve potential conflicts of interest? Almost all local officials are adamantly NON-PARTISAN, for good reason. But that Stew Young, he's just mavericky. Ain't it a hoot?

But never mind all the political crap! What's important is taking care of business, right? So let's see .... While Young is running around stumping for Twa, Langford's budget for 2009-2010 is still unfinished. WTF is taking so long? Bad news, we expect. Big debt. Low revenues. Higher taxes. [UPDATED update: Creative accounting takes time .... Please don't look too closely at the $50 million that isn't there.)

Meanwhile, Young and his council face getting dragged into court to defend themselves against charges of bias and conflict of interest once they adopt the South Skirt Mountain bylaw, which could happen any time. And the city still hasn't found a new Clerk Administrator to replace Rob Buchan (who was summarily fired earlier this year, says the grapevine.)

Helluva time for a one-legged mayor to get into an ass-kicking contest. But it should be entertaining!

Bear Mtn Resort to Get the Torch?

Today's rumour is all about the OLYMPIC TORCH RELAY to the 2010 Games, starting in Victoria on October 30 and passing through Langford on October 31 – HALLOWEEN!

According to INSIDER GOSSIP, the city of Langford has proposed that the torch relay should go up to Bear Mountain Resort.

Yes, it seems that mayor Stew Young would like to bestow yet another undeserved gift on Len Barrie, the beleagured owner of Bear Mountain Resort on Skirt (Spaet) Mountain in Langford. And make no mistake, this is a HUUUGE present - the endorsement of the world's largest sporting event, and a million-dollar marketing advantage.

Who else is boosting this Torch Relay to Bear Mountain concept? Keen observers say that Gordon Campbell and the BC Liberals are in bed with Len Barrie. They note last year's $10,000-a-plate Liberal Party fundraiser at Barrie's castle on the hill and suggest that the gift of the Torch Relay is the party's way of saying "thank you." (Although it sounds more like "f#$% you" to us.)

Oooh, can you just smell the power and money and burning Olympic dreams?

… Or Not?

HOWEVER! Like the attempted bailout, we predict this little s#$%storm is not going to materialize. Why? Let's just say we know people. People with morals and the power to use them. And we should point out that people who destroy native graves suffer the consequences.

One consequence for Barrie is getting called out as "Vancouver Island's Most Racist Developer." Does anyone think the province's "New Relationship" with First Nations supports presenting the Olympic Torch to the man who willfully destroyed a million-year-old native artifact?

In any case, it would be stunning to see a couple thousand zombies march on Langford this Halloween. Or will the spirits of the dead rise and take revenge on the greedy ones who desecrated their graves?

We expect an official announcement about the Torch Relay route later this week EVENTUALLY. Stay tuned!

Where's Len Barrie's bailout?

Those fickle government officials are lavishing big fat doughy packages of taxpayer cashola on OTHER highway projects, but none for Bear Mountain. How is Len Barrie going to make a billion dollars now? A year ago he was riding high, living the dream. He was golden! WTF happened? Boo freaking hoo.

Brother, can you spare a million bucks?
Right now, during this economic crisis, no one is suffering more than the rich. The old rules – where the investors got to make huge profits but also assumed the financial risks – don't apply anymore. That's why we need to give your tax money to condo developers. After all, they need it more than you do! And maybe they'll hire you for a couple weeks. Or do you want to be a welfare parasite for the rest of your life?

Please join us in supporting ex-hockey player and struggling Vancouver Island resort developer Len Barrie. This week, we inducted Barrie into the WTF? Hall of Flame and awarded him the first annual West Coast Wetiko “Cannibal of the Year” prize. (See sidebar, below.)

In 2006, Barrie set the stage for his entrance into the Hall of Flame by deliberately blowing up a native cave to build his golf course, after sending gangs of construction workers to harass native elders. Naturally, Barrie was hailed as a hero by his posse in Langford, which is home to some of Vancouver Island’s most racist rednecks.

Barrie clinched the Wetiko Prize by uniting with fellow developer Ron Coutre and Langford City Council behind an application for a $24.5 million federal infrastructure grant that would benefit the developers.

You see, Barrie has fallen on hard times. But your tax dollars can help make sure he doesn’t lose his 15,000-square-foot castle at Bear Mountain Resort, 20 km west of Victoria. If you haven’t owned a castle, you can’t possibly know how humiliating it is to rent a crappy condo and fly coach instead of first class.

The West Coast Wetiko (“WEE-ti-go”) Prize is dedicated to lost heritage and self-destructive insanity. Noted author Jack Forbes describes the Wetiko worldview this way: “Brutality knows no boundaries. Greed knows no limits. Perversion knows no borders. This is the disease of the consuming of other creatures’ lives and possessions. I call it cannibalism.”

To honour Barrie's status as "The Most Racist Developer on Vancouver Island," an award ceremony is planned for later this year.


Related posts:

Why Boycott Bear Mountain?

Would you support a company that paves over rare species, breaks its promises, relies on force and intimidation, and destroys native cultural sites?

Here on Vancouver Island, Bear Mountain Resort is indelibly marked by conflict and racism. Since early 2006, company officials have bullied and intimidated First Nations leaders and environmentalists in their rush to develop sensitive ecosystems and cultural sites. Bear Mountain owner Len Barrie and his top deputy Les Bjola admitted to reporters that they orchestrated two violent confrontations, directing over a hundred Bear Mountain construction workers to confront a native gathering at Spaet Cave and a small rally on the highway. Encouraged by their bosses, the contractors - including workers for Scansa Construction - swarmed both gatherings en masse, and pushed, shoved, kicked, spat at and threatened native leaders and local conservationists. Their actions were captured by TV cameras and YouTube.

Barrie actually brags about destroying the sacred cave and sending his goon squad to abuse native elders. His resort is built on native grave sites. He destroyed beautiful and rare ecosystems to build a tacky golf resort on a cold, rainy mountaintop. His arrogance, double-dealing and brutality have made him one of the most-hated men on Vancouver Island.

Barrie and his investors chose to make backroom deals with the City of Langford and the province to fast-track his resort development. He chose not to consult with local residents, respect aboriginal rights, comply with environmental best practices, or cooperate with the community in any way. And now he is facing the consequences.

Why would ANYONE do business with Bear Mountain Resort?

Bear Mountain Developer Bailout? FAIL

$32 million for the Interchange to Nowhere is a non-starter

Uh oh, looks like some prominent Vancouver Island condo kings can’t afford to pay for their massive new subdivisions. But wait, help is on the way! On March 12, Langford Council decided to make a formal request for a $32 million taxpayer bailout for the Bear Mountain Resort developers. What a relief - the landowners don't have to build the road to the resort! Taxpayers will do it for them! Hurrah! Except ...

It is illegal for a municipality to bestow a cash grant on a private company. Apparently there's this nitpicky little legal point the province has about preventing -- what do you call it? Oh, yeah, corruption and graft. Sorry.

Points for style, though! It takes a special kind of chutzpah to brag (loudly and constantly) that this fabulous new "infrastructure" (or amenity, or Local Area Service, or whatever you call it this week) will be 100% paid for by developers, and then turn around and beg for a federal bailout. Of course, the grant would have to be matched by municipal revenue, meaning taxpayers get soaked twice.

The best part was forbidding any public input about this project. A million points for brazen effort! But FAIL.

Langford Leaks: Top Secret Documents!
Secure – Anonymous – Confidential

Nasty: Langford Planner Won't Apologize for Legal Threats

Exposed: Why Langford's mayor, deputy mayor, and chief planner should resign.

Shocking: Letter from Langford planner Matthew Baldwin threatening legal action against a Gottengen University scholar for expressing her opinion.

SECRET: Bear Mountain Golf and Country Club's private membership list (Yes, Mayor Stew Young is a member of the $35,000 exclusive club!)

Classified Leak: Spencer Interchange Repayment Agreement
WARNING! 8 MB file. See page 94 - 111 for details about the interchange.

Big Rock Cocaine Mountain
~ a parable for our times ~
Once upon a time, in a place far, far away from Langford, an evil drug lord built a fortress on a mountain. Drugs are bad, m'kay? Don't do drugs. The end.

SPAET is native land. Read more about sacred caves and traditional practices at First Nations - Land Rights and Environmentalism.