03.17.2016 04:22 PM

Laura Miller is back. Good.

Laura Miller is back.

Back in her job, that is, as executive director of the BC Liberals. It was just announced in Victoria, I believe. And – she’s a great friend, and I’m biased, true – that’s a good and right decision.

Ten reasons why:

  1. Innocent until proven guilty: It gets forgotten, too often – and particularly when political people are the target – but she is guilty of nothing. Nothing has been proven.
  2. The charges are bogus, reason (a): The much-discussed emails aren’t gone. They’re still on the government servers in Guelph. Nothing was erased.
  3. The charges are bogus, reason (b): You don’t buy brand new computers for new staffers. You clean off the previous employee’s emailed spaghetti recipes and kitten photos, and you have the new person use that computer. That’s not a crime. That’s what everyone does, the OPP included.
  4. The charges are bogus, reason (c): The OPP is out of control – see how they were an actual sponsor of the PC’s Ottawa conference, a couple weeks ago? – and they were out for vengeance. Laura caught them perjuring themselves, she complained, and now they’re going after her for it. They’re rogue.
  5. Hysteria and histrionics lead always to bad law. Remember how those dozens of Senators were all corrupt? Remember how they were all going to jail? How Trudeau expelled them from his caucus? It was front page news everywhere. Well, guess what, folks – yesterday we found out that the RCMP aren’t going to investigate any of those Senators. Not one. A quiet admission that the whole thing had been, well, overblown. That is yet another reason why we need to be wary about political witchhunts, always.
  6. I know Laura. I have known her for many years. She is one of the most honest and decent people I’ve ever met, inside or outside politics. She didn’t do anything wrong. She simply did her job, in fact.
  7. “Misuse of a computer system to cause mischief”? Seriously? That’s one of the big charges she’s facing? It isn’t even in the Criminal Code, as far as I can see. How could she have caused “mischief” when (a) she explicitly had the authority to do what she did and (b) nothing harmful was done – to the computers themselves, or the information that was on them?
  8. Try this simple test. Drop your iPhone in the toilet. Or run over your Blackberry with your car. Now, go find a computer. Log on to Hotmail or Gmail or whatever. All your emails are still there, aren’t they? Yep. The “deleted” Queen’s Park emails are still there, too.
  9. Should she have left her post in the first place? She left to organize her defence, she’s done that, and now she’s back.  As she should be.
  10. Did I mention innocent until proven guilty, beyond a reasonable doubt? Well, I mention it again. It’s the law, after all.


  1. ABB says:

    Or maybe the defence costs are getting crazy, so she had to take the job back. Scott Hutchinson is about $700/hr.

    You should have re-posted her link for contributions.

  2. davie says:

    Coming back here as exec in the Premier’s office one item she might have to look at the charges against a person in a government office stemming from, what looks like, a practice of selecting emails to delete (some to triple delete) from government office computers. Easy to see how deleting notices of social events might be justified, but deliberately deleting emails regarding missing people on our Highway of Tears (16, from Prince George over to Prince Rupert…a number of women have disappeared along that highway. This might come up in any federal enquiry into murdered and missing women.)
    There are also questions around a firing of a number of health ministry people, and deletion of emails regarding that action.
    Allegations are that the practices of email deletions, destroying paper documents, and using only verbal communication, are attempts to evade freedom of information requests.
    Our BC Libs passed some legislation making legal some kinds of deletions last spring. Hard to say whether the Ontario experience influenced the wording of that legislation.

    Anyway, she comes from one email deletion brou ha ha to another one here in BC.

    • Russ says:

      She is the Exec Director of the party – not in the Premier’s office – two quite different positions

      • e.a.f. says:

        there are some of us in B.C. who might argue that point. At times its really hard to tell where the B.C. Lieberal party leaves off and the provincial government starts or some such thing.

        Christy flies around with a videographer these days. Now does a government who triple deletes records need a visual record of everything the queen of photo ops does or is it for the next round of election ads. Oh, the video guy one Kyle Survey, is listed as a government employee and went with Christy to Beijing and Paris, to record it all. His tweets are interesting though.

        “so long Beijing. You are just the right amount of crazy I needed'”
        “so long Paris. You …….needed”.

        wonder how much of his “crazy” was on my tax payer dime. Enquiring minds want to know because we have this poverty issue out here in B.C. you know one in five kids.

  3. doconnor says:

    By that logic, you should accuse anyone of promoting hate until they have been convicted under Canada’s hate law subject to the limitations of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms as interpreted by the Supreme Court of Canada.

  4. Mark says:

    Regarding your 2nd reason, that the emails are still on a server in Guelph:

    The Globe & Mail reports that “Officers also uncovered e-mails from Mr. Livingston in which he discussed ‘double deleting’ e-mails – erasing them from both the inbox and the server – so that they cannot be retrieved.” The Privacy Commissioners Report from a couple of years ago also reported that IT at the Ministry of Government Services said that the email data no longer exists on their servers. (I don’t know if that’s the same place as the “server in Guelph” you describe.)

    Now all of that above could have more to do with Peter Faist or someone else, rather than Laura Miller, I don’t know. But the whole backup server question seems to me to be crucial to the whole Gas Plant scandal. I haven’t seen it adequately explored by the media.

  5. Mike says:

    Warren, please stop with the facts and logic. It will only cause conservative heads to explode.

  6. Sam says:

    I don’t know the specifics of this case so I won’t comment.

    For the email issue however, one thing it depends on how the email client is set up.

    When you set up a stand alone email client (thunderbird, outlook etc,) you can set it up to leave the messages on the server or delete them. For example, you load an email client on your laptop to get your emails while on the road, but you want the same emails to be on your home computer. You set up your laptop client to leave the messages on the server. You start up the home computer, where your email client is set up to delete the messages on the server once they are downloaded to the client. Most are set up so that once they are downloaded it frees up room on the main server and avoids inbox getting too full.

    If you access your email via webmail (web client) and delete them – they’re gone, period. In special circumstances you may ask them to restore a backup.

    Most corporate email servers are set up to archive data and let it age out, some even archive the deleted or trash folder. If however, emails are deleted from the deleted (or trash etc) folders, they are gone, period.

  7. e.a.f. says:

    Innocent until proven guilty is right. Its how our justice system works and she gets the benefit of the doubt from me.

    on the other hand working for the queen of photo ops in B.C. not so much. You lie down with dogs, you get up with fleas. I know people need a job to live and if your a political worker, sometimes you can’t be that choosy, but working for Christy Clark and her crew/cabal, not so much.

    Here are a couple of points as to why one might not want to work for Christy.

    1. B.C. Lieberals have had the highest rate of child poverty in Canada for 14 out of 15 yrs. they other year it was a tie.

    2. lowest min. wage in Canada and the highest cost of housing.

    3. Site C Dam.

    4. The “give away” in my opinion of B.C. Rail by el gordo, of which Christy Clark was part of, while in cabinet.

    5. B.C. Ferries paying for the legal fees of an executive who is suing a citizen/taxpayer who is expressing their opinion about the new cable ferry to denman island. Guess its one way of keeping the complaints down.

    6. buying electricity at a higher rate than you can sell it for.

    7. while permitting “friends and corporations” to develop the run of the river projects, ruining fish bearing waters.

    8. No increase in disability rates for disabled from 2007 until now and then it worked out to $21. but hey they’re raising the electricity rates.

    9. triple deleting of government papers.

    10. refusing to deal with the high price of property in the lower mainland in a meaningful way. i.e. how a bout a tax on all those foreign owned properties sitting empty.

    11. Running up a half million dollar tab flying around in private jets, one belonging to a guy who donated really nicely to the B.C. Lieberals. Oh, the guy doesn’t have to pay his electricity bill at the mine either any more, just the interest on the tab.

    12. Go to Lailla Yuille’s blog and you’ll see 100 reasons people might not want to work for the B.C. Lieberals and Christy Clark.

  8. Mr. Beer N. Hockey says:

    I would not mind spending a few seconds in the vicinity of Ms. Miller to learn what my instincts have to say about her integrity. How things turn out for her will tell me something about your own instincts. While I am pretty big myself on one being innocent until proven guilty that same belief has a soundtrack in my head: No One Is Innocent.

  9. dean sherratt says:

    A comment on the principle that one is innocent until proven guilty. It is indeed a principle of criminal law and that is where this is played out. So too, the media saves their opprobrium for the finding of guilty and clothes themselves in the language of alleged x or y until then.

    But that is not a yoke that needs to be carried by all. As free citizens we can come to our own conclusions and vast numbers did before and after the (in)famous OJ Simpson Trial. As ordinary citizens we just can’t send anyone to jail. The judge instructs the jury not the whole world. So too employers can and should protect their reputations or more depending on the nature of charges. A teacher accused of molesting a minor does not continue in the schoolroom for safety’s sake…a salary may well be drawn but the presumption does not apply.

    And again of course, should there be a subsequent civil trail, many can be found both not guilty in the one yet liable in the other…the difference being standard of proof.

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