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Bob Mackin (Updated Aug. 30 and Sept. 3)

British Columbians could be going to the polls Oct. 17 or 24.

theBreaker.news exclusively reported that Elections BC staff were told to be ready to begin work as early as Sept. 1. Now, a source connected to Elections BC, but not authorized to comment publicly, has told theBreaker.news that there is a window from Sept. 12-22 in which Premier John Horgan could ask Lt.-Gov. Janet Austin to dissolve the Legislature.

B.C. Premier John Horgan, Nov. 21, 2019 (Mackin)

NDP backroomers are eager to use favourable polling and exploit the weak BC Liberal opposition to transform the NDP minority into a majority. By next week, the NDP and BC Liberals will be tied at 41 seats apiece when BC Liberal Tracy Redies formally resigns her Surrey-White Rock seat to become the new CEO of Science World. A by-election to fill the vacancy must be held no later than March 29, 2021 or held in conjunction with a general election.

The two-seat BC Greens are scheduled to vote Sept. 5-13 for a new leader, with the announcement of the winner on Sept. 14. An election could be triggered if the new leader opts out of the confidence and supply agreement that helped Horgan form government in July 2017. The remaining two seats in the Legislature are held by independents, ex-Green leader Andrew Weaver and Speaker Darryl Plecas.

Under Elections BC’s provisional schedule, which is known by top officials, a writ day of Sept. 14 or 15 would mean an Oct. 17 general voting day.

If the writ day is between Sept. 16 and 22, general voting day would be Oct. 24.

It is believed the NDP would rather delay the election until spring instead of go to the polls on Hallowe’en or in November, the beginning of coastal storm season, flu season and an expected second wave of the coronavirus pandemic.

Horgan acknowledged to reporters in July and August that an election is possible this fall, despite the Oct. 16, 2021 fixed election date. On Sept. 3, Horgan refused to rule out an election this fall, despite the worsening coronavirus pandemic in B.C.

Elections BC spokesman Andrew Watson confirmed in a written statement to theBreaker.news that the agency is actively searching for offices in each of the province’s 87 ridings.

“We will be securing space for district electoral offices throughout the province in September, in case an early election is called this fall. If it becomes clear that an early election won’t be called this fall, we will end these leases. In a scheduled election, offices are rented about a month before the election is called,” Watson said.

“If an election is called having space available is critically important to meet legislated requirements and timelines. A key consideration currently is that the pandemic makes it more challenging to secure space on short notice, as site visits must be scheduled well in advance and public health protocols must be followed. Securing space before a potential election call is an election management practice that has been done in other jurisdictions with minority governments.”

NDP caucus Facebook ad touting Horgan’s managing of the pandemic. (Facebook)

From June 25 to July 16, Government Communications and Public Engagement ran six telephone town halls to showcase swing riding NDP incumbents Bob D’Eith (Maple Ridge-Mission), Lisa Beare (Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows), Ravi Kahlon (Delta North), George Heyman (Vancouver-Fairview), Bowinn Ma (North Vancouver-Lonsdale) and Jinny Sims (Surrey-Panorama). The key contractor for the taxpayer-funded project was telephone town hall specialist and NDP pollster and data miner Stratcom.

Elections BC has already said that a pandemic-time election would include increased advanced voting, vote-by-mail and phone voting.

Elections BC Tweeted Aug. 24 that it was taking applications for district electoral office staff, including office managers, technical officers, trainers, recruitment officers and office support. “Apply by August 28!”

Three days later, on Aug. 27, it announced the deadline for temporary employment had been extended to Aug. 30 for clerical and administrative support jobs.

The B.C. New Democrat Caucus launched a Facebook ad campaign on Aug. 25, hyping a Globe and Mail headline that reads: “B.C. among the provinces best positioned to rebound.” Facebook ad library shows that the New Democrat Caucus has bought four ads on Facebook and two on Instagram.

Meanwhile, a former NDP aide is seeking the BC Liberal nod in Cariboo-Chilcotin. Mike Geoghegan, a Victoria lobbyist who relocated to Williams Lake, is hoping to contest the seat being vacated by the retiring Donna Barnett. Geoghan was a ministerial assistant in the Mike Harcourt NDP administration from 1991 to 1996.

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Bob Mackin (Updated Aug. 30 and Sept.

Bob Mackin

“Code Red,” we hardly knew ye.

theBreaker.news exclusively reported that TransLink’s SkyTrain and West Coast Express division announced an immediate change on Aug. 14 to the code word used when a train slams into a human.

A staffer had complained that “India” was offensive, so “Code Red” became the new phrase to radio for help when someone jumps or falls in front of a train.

Canada Line car promoting SkyTrain. (TransLink)

Not so fast.

On Aug. 25, a new bulletin from B.C. Rapid Transit Co.

“Code Red” was immediately rescinded, after receiving feedback from several employees.

The bulletin does not explain what staff said and it does not explicitly state that “India” is back. Previously, “Red” meant “confirmed” in TransLink lingo. “Code Red” is used in hospitals to denote fire. 

“We have referred the matter over to the Joint Health and Safety Committee to determine a new emergency code word for human contact with train,” the bulletin states. “Once they have reached a decision, we will share that information with you. Thank-you to all those that took the time to voice your concerns on this matter. Your passion is welcomed and appreciated.”

The Aug. 14 bulletin said that the company originally dropped “India” so as not to associate such incidents with a specific country or group of people.

“India” was on the list of emergency codes used by TransLink attendants, including “Charlie” for collision and “Delta” for derailment. The codes are derived from the International Civil Aviation Authority’s “alfa to zulu” phonetic alphabet.

“Alpha Codes are used by SkyTrain attendants to communicate matters under investigation with control room staff when in a public setting and to engage automatic responses,” said a July affidavit by TransLink FOI manager Sabina Kunkel in an Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner appeal case. “The purpose of Alpha Codes are to minimize the risk of causing panic to the public, particularly as many situations reported to TransLink staff turn out to be false alarms.”

The immediate replacement of India with Code Red came 10 days after a “track issue” was elevated to “medical emergency” status at Stadium-Chinatown station on Aug. 4. Service was disrupted for three hours. Medical emergency is the euphemism TransLink Tweets when a train has struck a human.

On July 23, a similar incident at Columbia station. A woman was wheeled out on a stretcher after being pushed in front of a train. A male was arrested and released. It is believed that he intervened between two women fighting on the platform.

A May 2015 story in the Georgia Straight quoted B.C. Coroners Service statistics showing 75 deaths since 1985 on SkyTrain tracks; at least 10 were accidental.

From 2008 to 2018, the Coroner counted 32 suicides by SkyTrain.

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Bob Mackin “Code Red,” we hardly knew ye.

In British Columbia, gatherings of more than 50 people are banned during the coronavirus pandemic.

But the Pacific National Exhibition is welcoming “crowds” of as many as 50 vehicles at a time to experience a Fair like no other in its 110-year history.

They say it’s more expedition than exhibition this year, with a $25-per-carload admission to enjoy the Super Dogs and agriculture exhibits outdoors and a reverse parade. Admission includes one free souvenir PNE facemask and two tickets to opening day of the 2021 PNE Fair. Mini donuts and other fair food offerings are extra.

PNE is taking reservations for Aug. 22-30 (closed Monday), 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. 

Click below and watch theBreaker.news at the PNE’s Drive-Thru Fair Experience. 

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In British Columbia, gatherings of more than

For the week of Aug. 23, 2020.

One tradition is interrupted. Another continues, in this pandemic year.

For the first time since 1919, there will be no Grey Cup awarded. The Canadian Football League season was cancelled after the league failed to secure a $30 million loan from the federal government.

Football Canada president and TSN Krown Gridiron Nation host Jim Mullin joins theBreaker.news Podcast host Bob Mackin on this edition. 

Mullin said it’s time for a virtual summit to plot the future of the game in Canada, which is second only to hockey. But he worries that consumption patterns for sports fans may be changed forever by the disruption of the pandemic.

“2021 is anything but guaranteed when it comes to a potential for spectator sports and I think there will be a bit of a chill actually in terms of going back to stadiums and arenas and facilities,” Mullin said from his home on idyllic Bowen Island.

Meanwhile, the Pacific National Exhibition Fair is back, in drive-thru form. Hear from spokeswoman Laura Ballance about keeping the tradition going in East Vancouver after many counted the PNE out.

Plus headlines and commentary.

Plus Pacific Rim and Pacific Northwest headlines and commentaries on British Columbia Day.

CLICK BELOW to listen or go to TuneIn or Apple Podcasts.

Have you missed an edition of theBreaker.news Podcast? Go to the archive.

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theBreaker.news Podcast: CFL nixed by pandemic, but PNE carries on
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For the week of Aug. 23, 2020. One

Bob Mackin

From now on, when a SkyTrain car slams into a human, staff will no longer use the code word “India” to radio for help.

Instead, they will say “Code Red.”

That is according to a TransLink internal bulletin after an employee complained “India” was offensive.

Nanaimo SkyTrain Station (Google)

“The company is making this change to recognize that incidents of this nature should not be associated with a specific country or a group of people as it has unintentional consequence, and also recognize that it may be offensive to our staff,” said the Aug. 14 bulletin, which was leaked to theBreaker.news.

“This was brought to the company’s attention from an employee. We want to take this opportunity to thank them for bringing it forward and keeping us accountable. Having a negative work environment for staff does not reflect the company’s values and this change is supported without reservation.”

“India” was on the list of emergency codes used by TransLink attendants, including “Charlie” for collision and “Delta” for derailment. The codes are derived from the International Civil Aviation Authority’s “alfa to zulu” phonetic alphabet.

“Alpha Codes are used by SkyTrain attendants to communicate matters under investigation with control room staff when in a public setting and to engage automatic responses,” said a July affidavit by TransLink FOI manager Sabina Kunkel in an Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner appeal case. “The purpose of Alpha Codes are to minimize the risk of causing panic to the public, particularly as many situations reported to TransLink staff turn out to be false alarms.”

The immediate replacement of India with Code Red came 10 days after a “track issue” was elevated to “medical emergency” status at Stadium-Chinatown station on Aug. 4. Service was disrupted for three hours. Medical emergency is the euphemism TransLink Tweets when a train has struck a human.

On July 23, a similar incident at Columbia station. A woman was wheeled out on a stretcher after being pushed in front of a train. A male was arrested and released. It is believed that he intervened between two women fighting on the platform.

A May 2015 story in the Georgia Straight quoted B.C. Coroners Service statistics showing 75 deaths since 1985 on SkyTrain tracks; at least 10 were accidental.

From 2008 to 2018, the Coroner counted 32 suicides by SkyTrain.

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Bob Mackin From now on, when a SkyTrain

For the week of Aug. 16, 2020.

The fifth session of the 41st Parliament of British Columbia is history. It closed before 5:30 p.m. on Aug. 14, with Speaker Darryl Plecas declaring “this house stands adjourned until further notice.”

Parliament Buildings, Victoria, on Aug. 13, 2020 (Mackin)

After a three-month break due to the coronavirus emergency, the province’s lawmakers met in a hybrid physical-virtual session beginning late June; most were involved via web conference, while a handful actually sat in the chamber. Reporters were banned from attending news conferences and could only call-in.

theBreaker.news Podcast host Bob Mackin was the only reporter in the press gallery for the final Question Period on Aug. 13. Was it the last before a fall election? Hear what Premier John Horgan had to say about that.

Also hear from Attorney General David Eby, Finance Minister Carole James, Energy Minister Bruce Ralston and Plecas. 

Plus Pacific Rim and Pacific Northwest headlines and commentaries on British Columbia Day.

CLICK BELOW to listen or go to TuneIn or Apple Podcasts.

Have you missed an edition of theBreaker.news Podcast? Go to the archive.

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theBreaker.news Podcast: Audio notebook from B.C. Legislature's surreal summer session
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For the week of Aug. 16, 2020.

Bob Mackin (Updated Aug. 18)

The attorney general’s ministry is asking B.C. Supreme Court to seize Paul King Jin’s World Champion Club, almost a year after theBreaker.news photographed a B.C. NDP cabinet minister at the Richmond gym with the man the government had already accused of laundering millions of dollars.

But the court application comes the month after another ministry licensed a security company part-owned by Jin’s son at the same address on the south foot of No. 5 Road.

Paul King Jin (second from right) and Tourism Minister Lisa Beare (second from left) on Aug. 27 at World Champion Gym in Richmond (Mackin)

In the Aug. 7 B.C. Supreme Court filing, the director of civil forfeiture alleges boxing and mixed martial arts gym manager Jin is the true owner and directing mind of Warrior Fighting Dream Ltd., which bought the $7.7 million property at No. 5 and Dyke roads in June 2016.

Warrior Fighting Dream’s corporate secretary is Jin’s wife Xiaoqi Wei and one of the directors is Jin’s son Jesse Xin Jia.

“The No. 5 Road property is proceeds of unlawful activities because some or all the funds used to purchase and/or maintain the No. 5 Road property were acquired, directly or indirectly, as a result of unlawful activities,” the court filing alleges.

None of the allegations has been proven in court. Jin has not filed a statement of defence. His lawyer, Bibhas Vaze, did not respond for comment on Aug. 13.

In the claim, Jin is accused of laundering $23.5 million at licensed casinos from 2012 to 2015, generating $32 million in profits at two illegal gambling houses over four months in 2015 and laundering the proceeds through the Silver International underground bank. (A criminal case against Silver International’s principals collapsed in November 2018 and the charges were stayed when federal prosecutors errantly exposed the name of an informant.)

The government also claims Jin and his wife reported an average combined income of just under $30,000 per year between 2011 and 2014.

The World Champion Club is the North American training base for China’s Olympic boxing team and has hosted events attended by allies of Vancouver’s Chinese consulate, including Canadian Alliance of Chinese Associations chair Yongtao Chen and People’s Liberation Army veteran Rongxiang “Tiger” Yuan.

Tourism Minister Lisa Beare at World Champion Club

Meanwhile, Jin’s son incorporated Blackcore Security and Investigations on May 11 with two other directors, Battlefield Fight League COO Trevor Carroll and Jamie Flynn, a former British Special Forces paratrooper who is now a Squamish BASE jumper and mixed martial arts athlete. Flynn did not respond for comment on Aug. 13.

The Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General gave the new company its first one-year licence on July 3. 

But, in a statement sent to theBreaker.news on Aug. 18, the Ministry said it is now exercising a clause of the Security Services Act that enables a review of a security business licence at any time.

“This security business has been notified that a review has been commenced. We are not able to provide further information regarding the details of the licence.”

Blackcore’s 30-second YouTube promotional video was shot inside and outside the gym, with personnel from World Champion Club and Blackcore, and contains a voice over by a Mandarin-speaking narrator. Despite being new on the scene, Blackcore markets itself as “#1 Security Company in Canada.” 

theBreaker.news was told Solicitor General Mike Farnworth was too busy on Aug. 13 for an interview. The division of Farnworth’s ministry that licences private security companies is ultimately overseen by Assistant Deputy Minister Brenda Butterworth-Carr, the former commander of the RCMP in B.C.

A prepared statement from the Solicitor General’s office on Aug. 13 said it was “unable to comment specifically on licensed businesses and their members.”

“In the licensing process under the Security Services Act, business applicants undergo a suitability assessment prior to the issuance of a licence and, as part of that suitability assessment, assessment of the suitability of the business’ controlling members is undertaken,” the statement read. “Under section 4 of the Security Services Act, the deputy registrar can conduct suitability reviews at any time if a situation changes.”

According to a defence statement from an earlier case in July 2019, Jin had been a Canadian citizen for over 25 years and combat sports are his passion.

Paul King Jin (World Champion Club/Facebook)

“He has been engaged in the sports of boxing and martial arts for most of his life, and has been a participant and coach in these sports at the international and national levels, both in Canada and abroad,” said Jin’s defence statement. “Mr. Jin has engaged in numerous forms of lawful employment over the course of his life, including while in Canada, and has been successful in lawfully producing income for himself and his family in the process.”

When Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Lisa Beare used the gym for a photo op about the legalization of professional kickboxing on Aug. 27, 2019, Beare posed for a group photo with Jin, his wife and Carroll.

Beare later told theBreaker.news she was unaware of Jin’s connection to the gym or that Jin was there. She said the venue had been chosen by the athletic commissioner’s office. Donna Evans, the deputy minister of Government Communications and Public Engagement, did not respond to queries from theBreaker.news last August. 

Past and present government officials contacted by theBreaker.news said on background that a basic security and reputation assessment of a private venue for a government event would have been as simple as open source research and consulting with local police or the RCMP officers assigned to Premier’s protective detail. 

Jin has denied the government’s allegations in the previous civil forfeiture actions. He has also accused the RCMP of violating his constitutional rights.

After Beare’s photo op, theBreaker.news asked Jin to comment on the allegations against him. Jin said he loves Canada and wants to help children fulfil their Olympic dreams.

“Nobody who charged me, nothing, four years already,” Jin said. “I work hard and teach young people to work hard in Canada.”

Jin’s most-recent court date was Aug. 11 at the temporary court in Kitsilano Secondary School on a charge of using an electronic device while driving.

The government’s latest civil action against Jin was filed during a lull between phases of the Cullen Commission on money laundering in B.C. The public inquiry will resume by video conference on Oct. 13 instead of Sept. 8, because of document production delays related to the coronavirus pandemic. Premier John Horgan has not ruled out a snap fall election, a year ahead of schedule. 

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Bob Mackin (Updated Aug. 18) The attorney general’s

Bob Mackin

At a time of strained relations between Canada and China, the Mayor of Vancouver accepted an invitation to speak by phone with China’s ambassador about topics including “sub-national cooperation.”

The People’s Republic of China embassy in Ottawa published a statement after the June 29 call, but neither Kennedy Stewart’s chief of staff nor communications director would reveal to theBreaker.news what the mayor said to Ambassador Cong Peiwu. They also said they did not keep any handwritten notes or other records about the phone call.

Ambassador Cong Peiwu on July 15 with the Canada China Business Council (YouTube)

Cong and Stewart spoke two days before the new Beijing-imposed security law that restricts civil liberties in Hong Kong. The July 3 embassy statement said Cong briefed Stewart “on his views on current China-Canada relations and anti-pandemic cooperation between both countries,” and that they discussed enhancing economic, trade and people-to-people engagement for mutual benefit.

“Stewart expressed gratitude to China for its support and assistance for Canada, especially the city of Vancouver, in its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, saying that Vancouver attaches importance to developing its relationship with China and is committed to stepping up co-operation across the board with China,” read the embassy statement.

Stewart chief of staff Neil Monckton said he sat-in on the meeting, but declined comment. He deferred to communications director Alvin Singh, who sent theBreaker.news a prepared statement with no details of what was said.

“The Mayor has many calls with foreign representatives and as a matter of course does not comment on the details of those conversations,” Singh wrote. “As part of the Mayor’s work representing the City of Vancouver to the world, his office is in regular contact with Global Affairs Canada to ensure he is working in parallel with the Government of Canada.”

Asked to comment on Cong’s statement, Singh said: “The Ambassador’s statement is his own and we can’t comment on it.”

Ivy Li of the Canadian Friends of Hong Kong said Stewart is sending the wrong message while China is keeping the Two Michaels, Kovrig and Spavor, hostage in retaliation for Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou’s December 2018 arrest.

Mayor Kennedy Stewart (Mackin)

“Instead of standing up for Canadians’ human rights, Mayor Stewart would be ‘committed to stepping up cooperation across board with China’ on behalf of Vancouverites’?” Li said.

“Mayor Stewart has essentially sent out a clear and strong message to Beijing that hostage diplomacy won’t harm our relationship; rather, it works! See, Canadians are eager to do business and to have deeper ties with you across board — we will do whatever you want!” 

Stewart is the only mayor mentioned on the embassy website’s 2020 list of readouts, speeches and newspaper op-eds.

Under the freedom of information law, theBreaker.news asked Vancouver city hall for the agenda, minutes, handwritten notes, recording and transcript of the meeting. The only record that city hall claims to exist was the June 24 email from a person named Nan at the embassy to Monckton. 

“Glad to speak with you on the phone,” Nan wrote. “As what we talked, Chinese Ambassador Cong Peiwu would like to kindly request a courtesy phone call with Mr. Kennedy Stewart, Mayor of Vancouver this Friday or next weeks. Ambassador Cong would like to establish contact and exchange ideas about COVID-19, China-Canada relations and sub-national cooperation with Mr. Stewart through this phone call.”

By contrast, Stewart was relatively transparent about his first encounter with a Chinese diplomat after his October 2018 election. He told the StarMetro that consul general Tong Xiaoling used a speech at a Chinese Benevolent Association event on Dec. 9, 2018 to slam the Canadian government for arresting Meng on behalf of the U.S., which wants to try her on bank fraud charges.

“She made a long speech about how this is outrageous,” Stewart told reporter David Ball. “Which was really quite awkward because [defence minister] Harjit Sajjan was there as well. [She] firmly denounced the ministry. This was a long speech — but it’s more for the bosses back home, I would think.”

Stewart had a face-to-face meeting with Tong on Dec. 12, 2018, the day after Meng was released on bail to live under curfew at her Dunbar house. Last September, Stewart did not attend the Chinese consulate banquet that marked the 70th anniversary of Communist Party rule or the Chinese government’s Union of B.C. Municipalities cocktail party.

Louis Huang protested outside Meng Wanzhou’s March 6 court date (Mackin)

The only other subnational Canadian politician that Cong has spoken with this year is B.C. Premier John Horgan.

Unlike Stewart’s office, a spokeswoman for Horgan told theBreaker.news that Cong and Horgan spoke for 10 minutes on April 17. “Reaffirming the strong cultural and historic relationship between China and Canada, and in particular with B.C.’s sister province Guangdong,” said Jen Holmwood.

“The premier also thanked the ambassador for the supply of PPE China has been providing to Canada. They did not discuss [the two Michaels] nor did they discuss China’s handling of the coronavirus.”

The Premier’s Office was also contacted by Nan, who asked April 16 if Horgan would have time to “exchange ideas” with Cong the next week or later. Horgan’s staff quickly arranged the phone call for the next day.

The April 21 statement on the embassy website said China expressed sympathies to B.C. and was willing to provide medical supplies.

“John Horgan thanked China for providing anti-epidemic assistance to B.C., expressing that B.C. cherishes the traditional friendship with China and is committed to conducting exchanges and cooperation with China,” the embassy website says.

Last December, the Mayor of Winnipeg, Brian Bowman, was criticized for meeting in-person with Cong. Bowman Tweeted that he discussed sister city Chengdu, trade and Winnipeg’s aspiration to be a leader in promoting and protecting human rights.

“Statements like this play into the PRC’s agenda of obfuscation and actually undermine efforts to protect human rights,” Tweeted former Ambassador of Canada to China David Mulroney. “They reflect the false assumption that diplomacy cannot cope with plain speaking and hard truths.”

China consul general Tong Xiaoling, left, and Premier John Horgan on Feb. 4, 2019 in Richmond (BC Gov)

In 2010, Richard Fadden, the director of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, sounded the alarm that several municipal politicians in B.C. were under China’s influence. South of the border, top officials have warned that China is targeting politicians at all levels.

“The Chinese Government has been methodical in the way it’s analyzed our system, our very open system, one that we’re deeply proud of,” said Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in a February speech at a conference of state governors. “It’s assessed our vulnerabilities, and it’s decided to exploit our freedoms to gain advantage over us at the federal level, the state level, and the local level.”

Last September, Port Coquitlam Mayor Brad West led the boycott of China’s UBCM event. It was the only foreign government to do so and the UBCM decided afterward that it would not allow such lobbying again. Australian professor and author Clive Hamilton has written extensively on the Communist Party’s United Front Work Department that pays special attention to grooming municipal politicians.

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Bob Mackin At a time of strained relations

For the week of Aug. 9, 2020.

Join theBreaker.news Podcast host Bob Mackin for a special birthdays edition.

He turned the big 5-0 on Aug. 8 and shares some socially distant and virtual birthday cheer with Vancouver Island political commentator Laila Yuile (who shares the same birthdate) and Dave Olson, the former Hootsuite vice-president now living in Japan (and celebrating his milestone on Aug. 16). Also, hear what was going on in B.C.’s capital 50 years ago this weekend.

Plus an interview with Burnaby Coun. Joe Keithley, who recorded a new version of one of his legendary DOA songs, “You Won’t Stand Alone,” with Mayor Mike Hurley. The anthem rocks against hate and racism.  

Plus Pacific Rim and Pacific Northwest headlines and commentaries on British Columbia Day.

CLICK BELOW to listen or go to TuneIn or Apple Podcasts.

Have you missed an edition of theBreaker.news Podcast? Go to the archive.

Support theBreaker.news for as low as $2 a month on Patreon. Find out how. Click here.

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theBreaker.news Podcast: Socially distant birthday fun
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For the week of Aug. 9, 2020.

Bob Mackin

During their decade in office, they became two of B.C.’s most-powerful politicians. Less than two years after retiring from politics, they have changed their tune.

The Vision Vancouver centre-left coalition dominated city hall from 2008 to 2018, as billions of dollars of Chinese money flowed into the city and touched-off a luxury tower and mansion building boom.

Ex-Coun. Raymond Louie was appointed acting mayor by Robertson. Vision’s biggest legacy is the most-obvious: the mushrooming of skyscrapers on the downtown peninsula. Louie became an executive with Coromandel Properties in early 2019 and now he has the suburbs on his mind. That according to his own words on an Urban Land Institute Zoom webinar about adapting to a changing Cascadia.

Former Mayor Gregor Robertson became the most-travelled politician in B.C. history, spending $127,000 of taxpayers’ funds and 331 days outside the city from 2009 to 2017. On an Ethelo eDemocracy Zoom webinar, he admitted globetrotting pollutes.

Click and watch below.

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Bob Mackin During their decade in office, they