Welcome to the dawning deja vu day of the bravely rebranded British Columbia. Yes, Toto, you’re not back in dust bowl Kansas, but awake in the new reality of a BC dust bowl to come, if returned premier Christy Clark and her claque of counter-Evolutionaries manage to ram their “mandate” through the province’s Legislature.
You see, Christy and her crusty coterie would have us all whisked back to the times of WAC Bennett; where leather-necked, hard hewn he-men hacked their way through primordial forests, and o’er top the perilous crag to cut timber and dig ore; venturing forth to roughshod tame the wild, and harness mighty Nature herself into Man’s service.
At least, that’s more or less the nation-building narrative Clark would have us believe; the truth of the matter is depressingly more prosaic.
Christy and the friends of Gordo the former, our near universally unloved previous political Judas are merely to continue the pillage of what remains of the province’s once peerless public energy sector, as they simultaneously destroy our environment. It’s a neat trick, promising to literally obliviate our past, while effectively obliterating our future in a fell, if four years prolonged blow.
One of the many dark Voldemortian efforts feeding the BCLiberals false legend of bringing good things to light here is the infamous Smart Meter program. Foisted upon us with neither word of warning, nor debate in the rump Assemblage in Victoria by “he whose name BCLiberals are bade never spake,” the billion dollar boondoggle is worse than irretrievable folly, it’s dangerous and probably illegal.
Sharon Noble is an activist with the Coalition to Stop Smart Meters, a grassroots group that has opposed the intrusion of BC’s new standard of Hydro power metering for the past two years. Last month, they filed a class-action suit against the utility, citing broken promises and alleged customer intimidation by BC Hydro regarding installation of the devices, and a litany of health and privacy concerns the devices create.
Sharon Noble in the first half.
And; while the NSA unwarranted spying story rages in the United States, what’s Canada’s New Government doing here? Are Canada’s telephone and internet providers similarly tasked by secretive homegrown spook agencies to monitor all our calls, while counting too every keystroke Canadians make? Short answer: Probably.
Dr. Michael Geist is professor of law at the University of Ottawa, where he too holds the Canada Research Chair in Internet and E-commerce Law. He is too the recipient of numerous honours and awards, including: 2010’s Kroeger Award for Policy Leadership, and the Public Knowledge IP3 Award; the 2009 Les Fowlie Award for Intellectual Freedom from the Ontario Library Association; and 2008’s Electronic Frontier Foundation’s Pioneer Award among others. Michael Geist’s syndicated column, ‘Law Bytes’ is featured in the Toronto Star and Ottawa Citizen among other publications, and he’s also served as editor for the books,'”Radical Extremism” to “Balanced Copyright”: Canadian Copyright and the Digital Agenda’, and ‘In the Public Interest: The Future of Canadian Copyright Law’. He’s also the author of the eponymous blog, MichaelGeist.ca, where he last week published the article, ‘Who Is Watching the Watchers?: Ten Questions About Canada’s Secret Metadata Surveillance Activities.’
Michael Geist and electronic cloak and dagger Canadian style in the second half.
And; Victoria Street Newz publisher and CFUV Radio broadcaster, Janine Bandcroft will be here at the bottom of the hour to bring us up to speed with some of what’s going on on the streets of our city, and beyond. But first, Sharon Noble and the wacky world of BC Hydro’s WiFi Smart meter program.
Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Monday, 5-6pm Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, and on the internet at: http://cfuv.uvic.ca. He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, http://www.pacificfreepress.com. Check out the GR blog at: http://gorillaradioblog.blogspot.ca/