Enjoying life, off the hamster wheel
With all the cabinet ministers resigning and getting reshuffled these days because they seem to have all dated Julie Couillard, I can’t help but wonder if there will be anyone left besides the opposition to run the country. “Wow!” to Julie – she certainly gets around. She’s a busy gal, she is, keeping all those cabinet ministers happy.
And what of Ol’ Harpo? With that schmarmy smirk on his face and escalating avoidance techniques, he’s really good at shirking all this sticky business. Is it a serious matter that elected officials are dating people with connections to organized crime, in Julie Couillard’s case, the Hell’s Angels?
Maybe we need to define “organized crime”. What exactly is “organized crime”? Is it a group comprised of people who develop and maintain mechanisms from which they profit that is illegal, or perhaps if not punishable by law, shameful or harmful? If this is so, then maybe the government itself falls under the category of “organized crime”. The government has done shameful things, and people within government have done shameful things. Let’s start with Maxime Bernier. Maxime Bernier has recently resigned from his post as Minister of Foreign Affairs because he left government documents at Julie Couillard’s house… for FIVE WEEKS! Yes, this official file was MISSING for FIVE WEEKS! Get this, he resigned only hours before his ex-girlfriend, Ms. Couillard told the press about it. Apparently the PMO didn’t know about it until then. Apparently. And why the heck didn’t she call him immediately and say something like, “Hey, Maxime, you forgot something that looks important. You better come get it right away”? So, he loses his important documents and she doesn’t try to get them back to him, and they remain in a private person’s home and not in the Ministry’s office… FOR FIVE WEEKS! Instead, she waited, contacted “a lawyer” and got legal advise. From whom, Gilles Daudelin (link)?
Isn’t it shameful that: A) the Minister of Foreign Affairs “forgets” a government document at his girlfriend’s place for a whack o’ time, B) the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and all the people working in it don’t notice that there’s a missing file, and C) the Prime Minister’s Office isn’t aware that there’s a file missing from one of its ministries…for FIVE weeks? YIKES! To bring it down to something closer to home, let’s say I hired a lawyer, and the lawyer takes my file out of the office, goes to his girlfriend’s, leaves the file there, AND DOESN’T NOTICE for… FIVE WEEKS! Holy Clown Show, Batman! That lawyer would be deemed a totally incompetent lawyer, and it would be hard for the Canadian Bar Association to defend this lawyer’s competence. But in this case, in the case of the Government of Canada, the PM stands up and basically paraphrases Trudeau’s famous “The State has no business in the bedrooms of the nation”. Okay, that might have been so back when Trudeau married Maggie and she was younger and it was all ooohs and aaaahs over the scandalous nature of this popular older bachelor statesman and the pretty, young and carefree Margaret Sinclair. But that was a completely different matter. She hadn’t dated guys involved in “organized crime”, at least not of the biker-gang variety. She just married a politician at the tender age of 22 and partied with the Rolling Stones. Oh, and smoked weed. Oh, and was a hippy flower-child. Big woop.
But, I digress. I’ve been trying to figure out the timeline of what happened with the Bernier/Couillard affair. This is what I’ve come up with. Please correct me if I’m wrong:
Who is she? Here’s an excellent article from the Globe and Mail: (link)
She did an exclusive interview with a Quebec media company, TVA: (link)
What I’ve gleaned so far: She’s somehow involved in real estate, maybe development; she did ‘business’ with her now deceased boyfriend Gilles Giguère; she had a business partner named Bob Pépin, who was a member of the biker gang the Rockers, and was also a former boyfriend who eventually duped her according to the Montreal Gazette (link below), she was arrested in 1995 with a bunch of other people associated with the Hell’s Angels, including lawyer Gilles Daudelin, who was (is?) council for the HA, but she was quickly released after the arrest; she’s has associations with biker types since at least the late 90s.
1995 – Couillard is dating Gilles Giguère, a member of a biker gang. He was a loan shark according to the Montreal Gazette: (link) She and others were arrested but she was quickly released. There are no charges against her. In 1996 Giguère is shot to death.
Fast forward to:
April 2007 – Couillard & Bernier meet at a dinner party
May 2007 – they officially start dating, she agrees to a one year dating term, for good publicity.
December 2007 (one week before Christmas) – Couillard breaks up with Bernier, but keeps her promise to attend public engagements with him for the year.
April 2008 – Bernier leaves a classified document behind at her house (link)
May 2008 – news that he left classified docs at her house comes to light.
June 10, 2008 – RCMP tell a House of Commons Security Committee that she was “known” to police (link), though what they know remains a mystery
Now, what on Earth is Maxime Bernier’s history and associations? How has he become associated with a gal who has known connections to organized crime? Is it, as has been stated, that she said she was interested in politics and was introduced to Bernier through mutual friends. Who are these friends? What connection do they all share? Here’s a little something to mull over: (link)
So now that we have all this media attention on Julie Couillard, what’s going on with Maxime? Who the heck is he? What kind of law did he practice? Criminal? Who did he represent if so? Who are these mutual friends who introduced Couillard to Bernier? Why is Harper being so invasive? Is this a matter of National Security? Maybe it’s a matter of money, contracts, drugs. Who knows.
What also burns me is that we’re paying for partners of ministers, to fly with the ministers to functions all over the world. When I went with Neil to Maui, we paid for my plane ticket. Okay, the room was booked, and there was enough space for both of us to go, but all extra expenses that I incurred, we paid for ourselves. The company didn’t have to pay out a single extra cent because I was there. I think the same should be true for our officials.
Government: The bastion of moral, ethical and legal impeccability, or not.