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Old 03-25-2014, 10:49 AM   #26
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We scream murder and call these people scumbags, but we should have some perspective here. There are many people here who grew up in the confines of suburbia and somehow think that the people in the DTES deserve their fate because of poor choices, poor parenting, etc. What's sad is that because of the actions of a few, the media and popular opinion will turn against places like inSite which do provide a service that benefits the cmmunity. As godwin mentioned, you take away places like inSite, people will still be shooting up drugs, but instead in the open. People will of course throw up silly solutions like throwing everyone in work camps, or in mandatory rehab, but those types of solutions require massive amounts of money and probably wouldn't be legally defensible.

There's no free lunch when it comes to doing something about the DTES.
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Old 03-25-2014, 10:53 AM   #27
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The only charity I give money to is the Crohn's and Colitis Foundation (as I have Crohn's and two of my friends have Colitis and I'd love to not have to take 1-2 years off work every 5-10 years and not have the -15 years average life expectancy associated with it.)

Aside from that, I volunteer my time (i.e. delivering flowers for the MS Society, cooking hot dogs for the special olympics, etc.)

I've seen way too many NPOs walk into my former place of employment at the end of their fiscal year and drop $30k on shit they even admitted they didn't need just so that they could use up the rest of their budget (as their budget would be cut, otherwise).

Just pissed me off to see that, but you can't say anything about it without risking your job.
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Old 03-25-2014, 11:32 AM   #28
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Don't people donate to charities because it's tax deductible?
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Old 03-25-2014, 11:42 AM   #29
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Jenny Kwan crying was hilarious. She's crying because she got caught and her political career is over, otherwise she could give a rats ass about wasting taxpayers money.
Giving her the benefit of the doubt, it's been reported that it was her ex husband that paid for everything, and since they have separate bank accounts she really had no idea where the money was coming from.

The one thing I wonder about is where her ex husband is in all of this? We see Jenny Kwan crying, yet nothing from the guy who supposedly spent the money. Did he died?
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Old 03-25-2014, 11:43 AM   #30
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Jenny Kwan crying was hilarious. She's crying because she got caught and her political career is over, otherwise she could give a rats ass about wasting taxpayers money.

And I stop giving money to charities, I'd rather buy an item or a meal because I know the $10 I give a particular charity will never make it to the people who need it. Maybe a $1 out of the $10 I give will actual go to the people who need help.
Here is a breakdown of the $34,000 that Jenny Kwan said she will pay back
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A breakdown of the expenses Kwan believes she owes:

$8,323.22 – travel to UK
$3,175.12 – travel to Bristol
$5,950.60 – flights
$4,142.68 – Vienna
$2,694.95 – Disney hotel upgrade
Must be NDP math. Wonder what the other 10K is for?

Source: http://www.news1130.com/2014/03/21/j...ve-of-absence/
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Old 03-25-2014, 12:01 PM   #31
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Did a project in the DTES last term with an organization that had a group of coordinators (paid) and ran itself off volunteers (mostly homeless). They received funding to hire 3 of their volunteers for part time and picked their 3 most hard working people.

By the time I finished my project the 3 people had stopped being paid because their funding 'ran out' even though it was supposed to be set aside for nothing but paying them. These people were working nearly full time and got shafted. The coordinators just shrugged and said 'shit happens'. Was fucked up.
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Old 03-25-2014, 12:36 PM   #32
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ChangeHeroes is a good example of that. You do the fund raising yourself to build a school in Africa/Haiti/etc and you can see exactly where your money goes, and they put your name on the school when its built, and the kids send you thank you mail.
Time to make a Revscene Academy lol
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Old 03-25-2014, 12:37 PM   #33
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Giving her the benefit of the doubt, it's been reported that it was her ex husband that paid for everything, and since they have separate bank accounts she really had no idea where the money was coming from.

The one thing I wonder about is where her ex husband is in all of this? We see Jenny Kwan crying, yet nothing from the guy who supposedly spent the money. Did he died?
First part is BS. Husband doesn't spend 34k travelling and Somone apparently "smart" like Kwan is just oblivious to it.

Second part, he's receiving a nice severance package.
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Old 03-25-2014, 10:23 PM   #34
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...and in other somewhat related news. Seriously, this is just tip of iceberg.

Legislature speaker Linda Reid admits taxpayers paid for hubby’s trip to South Africa, refunds more than $5,500

VICTORIA — Linda Reid, the speaker of the B.C. legislature, apologized Tuesday for taking her husband with her on a parliamentary trip to South Africa and refunded $5,528.16 to taxpayers.

“If this caused anyone any consternation, I sincerely apologize,” Reid said, adding the amount represented the cost of her husband’s taxpayer-financed flight to South Africa last year.

Reid, the long-serving Liberal MLA for Richmond East, said her husband, Sheldon Friesen, went with her to the Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference as part of a long-standing tradition of spousal trips at the legislature.

“It’s definitely past practice,” she said. “Practice has changed. Practice needs to evolve. We need to refine as we go forward, and I’m happy to lead on changing.”

She announced the refund a few hours after news of the taxpayer-financed trip broke in the media.

Reid attended the conference in South Africa from Aug. 28 to Sept. 6, 2013. She tweeted a picture of Friesen petting a giraffe during the trip with the caption: “My husband making new friends,” and another picture of herself petting lion cubs, tweeting that it was “an amazing experience.”

Reid said an all-party finance audit committee at the legislature now is discussing whether to change a policy that allowed spouses to accompany parliamentarians on business trips.

“I will not be having my spouse paid for by anyone other than he or I, and certainly I’m taking that back to finance audit,” she said. “Changing course on practice is tough work, but we’ll get there.”

Reid said the assistant deputy speaker, New Democrat MLA Raj Chouhan, was on the same trip and also took his wife along, but she wouldn’t comment on whether Chouhan should refund money to taxpayers, too.

“Honourable members will make their own choices as they go forward,” Reid said.

But Shane Simpson, the NDP house leader, said Reid had earlier informed Chouhan that it was OK for him to bring his wife along at taxpayers’ expense.

“At the outset of the trip, when it was first planned, he (Chouhan) made the offer to pay his spouse’s travel there and was told (by Reid) that spousal travel was a legitimate part of this and that wasn’t necessary,” Simpson said.

Now that Reid has refunded the cost of her husband’s airfare, Chouhan will likely have another talk with Reid about what to do, Simpson added. He said Chouhan and his wife flew economy class and stayed at a Holiday Inn Express in Johannesburg at a total cost of about $6,300.

Reid came under fire at the legislature recently for several expensive upgrades, including a $48,000 computer console in the legislative chamber, $14,000 for new curtains, $13,449 for a new MLA TV lounge and a $733 snack rack to hold free muffins for MLAs.
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Old 03-25-2014, 10:43 PM   #35
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Every level of gov. should be audited. Tired of hearing this bullshit.
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Old 03-25-2014, 10:44 PM   #36
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Fuck all these assholes...

Apologizing when they get caught? If I misrepresented my expenses at my job, I'd probably get fired. We as tax payers should have the same right to fire these asshats we put in power.
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Old 03-25-2014, 11:01 PM   #37
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Every level of gov. should be audited. Tired of hearing this bullshit.
And you have to hire more public servants, or hire one of the big-4 firms to perform the audits, which costs more money.

These MLAs should face discipline, but you know what happens when you audit everything? Paralysis and more red tape. Where do you draw the line?

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Apologizing when they get caught? If I misrepresented my expenses at my job, I'd probably get fired. We as tax payers should have the same right to fire these asshats we put in power.
You can... at election time.
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Old 03-25-2014, 11:37 PM   #38
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cost more money than what? the amount wasted? We dont even know the amount wasted so it would make sense to do an audit.
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Old 03-25-2014, 11:37 PM   #39
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Jenny Kwan crying was hilarious. She's crying because she got caught and her political career is over, otherwise she could give a rats ass about wasting taxpayers money.

And I stop giving money to charities, I'd rather buy an item or a meal because I know the $10 I give a particular charity will never make it to the people who need it. Maybe a $1 out of the $10 I give will actual go to the people who need help.
I understand everyone's rational for not donating. But there are many people in need, and many legitimate causes that actually need or require funding, and us not donating to them is not the answer.


I'm just pissed because I came from a VERY poor family and some of these social programs did help us out tremendously and I wouldn't be as successful or better off as a person if weren't for some of these charities. These scandals prevent people from donating to well run or legitimate organizations and in the end, only hurt the people who need it the most. FUCK IM PISSED>

I'm not sure what the solution is, but I just wish there is a better way to help those in need, and I'm sure none of us would be oppose to that.
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Old 03-25-2014, 11:50 PM   #40
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The one thing I wonder about is where her ex husband is in all of this?
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Old 03-26-2014, 02:27 AM   #41
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And you have to hire more public servants, or hire one of the big-4 firms to perform the audits, which costs more money.

These MLAs should face discipline, but you know what happens when you audit everything? Paralysis and more red tape. Where do you draw the line?



You can... at election time.
Not soon enough, especially in a case where they just got elected. Remember someone named Gordon Campbell when he lied about HST during the election and we had no powers to remove him from office until the next election 3 years later? Fortunately for his party, he stepped down.
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Old 03-26-2014, 03:25 AM   #42
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Don't people donate to charities because it's tax deductible?
what a cynical view on the world you have. people donate because they want to help. The tax credit, which is not great by any means, is a secondary benefit

If donations are a major part of your tax planning, you're doing it wrong.

I donate a lot of money to cancer research because it is something that has touched me personally. Whether there was a tax benefit or not would not change my actions.
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Old 03-26-2014, 03:29 AM   #43
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i really would like to see the people of BC stand up and demand change - demand everyone involved be fired without any severance package - i don't care that their employment contract states certain severance, these people acted in bad faith and i would question whether they acted fraudulently - additionally, if you get fired, i assume you wouldn't get the severance package, so why aren't we firing these people rather than letting them resign?

One huge thing i noticed when moving to Canada from the UK, people in the UK are whiney bitches (me inclusive), but damn it, if something isn't right, we stand up and bitch and whine until it is changed - not so much anymore becuase the UK has changed a lot (become a nanny state to immigrants and lazy people - but that's a different story), in the 80's and early 90's, if something wasn't right, groups stood up, made a noise, forced change - we don't do that in Canada, look at Gordo and the BC liberals, the HST debacle - they got away with it, they lied, they're scum, but they got away with it scott free.

fuck that - fuck all of it, time for change people, time for more transparency, time for accountability - time for smaller government! i wish people would stand up as a group and demand this. The system in the western world is broken, no question about it.
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Old 03-26-2014, 10:17 AM   #44
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We're too busy working to pay off our mortgages to stand up and demand for change.
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Old 03-26-2014, 01:10 PM   #45
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Donations to charities are tax deductible but not as much as you think. The most refund you can get back is not donating to non profits but to political parties.

In Canada, we just had good laws but no one to enforce them due to cuts and politicians.. it is not just in non profit, but air, water and resources (like oil and wildlife etc) and even health (the Ebola case eg there is no monitoring, same for Rabies, take not pet lovers). People who are pointing to one or 2 high profile cases are missing the big picture, it is a systematic issue.

The fact is less government means more inefficiencies because you need more organizations to get involved as outside contractors (each with their good intentions but bag of inefficiencies). But honestly it is also a product of all the schools requiring "volunteer" hours for graduation, there is just not enough volunteer opportunities, so people have to make up things like Unicorn conservation or BS like that. Everyone in society has a bit of their appendages in the trough. All these non profits are contractors running social services for society as a whole vs in the past the government. The only way to attract the non profits' existence is let them run as enterprises and to have certain descretions, so if people are megalomaniacs or have balls as big as the moon they will eventually get caught. As long as you are providing a service (eg recycling) and it involves disenfranchised segment of society, you are set.

There are plenty of "non profits" running around. Ever notice the bins you dump you clothes for "charity"? They have been proliferating like mushrooms the last few years. Why? Anyone with a white panel truck can form a non profit, servicing drop offs like that and get paid low 6 figures as an "executive". A lot of people on this board don't seem to understand the business angle of non profits. There are so many loopholes, anyone with mild business acumen can live well off and I dare say afford a house (on a lot) in Vancouver as their "career".

I am surprised no one at Revscene form a non profit..

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Don't people donate to charities because it's tax deductible?

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Old 03-26-2014, 02:10 PM   #46
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fuck that - fuck all of it, time for change people, time for more transparency, time for accountability - time for smaller government! i wish people would stand up as a group and demand this. The system in the western world is broken, no question about it.
Smaller government only works if people ask less of the government. You might because you believe that you're in control of things, but there are lots of things that government is involved in that people are unwilling to reduce their dependence on. Self-reliance only gets you so far, unless you envision a Hobbesian existence.

Accountability and transparency are buzzwords that get thrown around with little context. If you want more transparency, then you need more people to monitor things. More people costs more money and increases red tape. There will always be bad apples, but if you audit everything to death, you risk paralysis. People want governments to be run like businesses - well, let the bureaucrats do their work instead of asking them to fill out 10 pieces of paper and have 5 managers' approvals for every expense report.
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Old 03-26-2014, 02:40 PM   #47
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Smaller government only works if people ask less of the government. You might because you believe that you're in control of things, but there are lots of things that government is involved in that people are unwilling to reduce their dependence on. Self-reliance only gets you so far, unless you envision a Hobbesian existence.

Accountability and transparency are buzzwords that get thrown around with little context. If you want more transparency, then you need more people to monitor things. More people costs more money and increases red tape. There will always be bad apples, but if you audit everything to death, you risk paralysis. People want governments to be run like businesses - well, let the bureaucrats do their work instead of asking them to fill out 10 pieces of paper and have 5 managers' approvals for every expense report.
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Well, good point.

But at least when something like this happens, let there be significant consequences. I'd love for there to be criminal consquences, more than your average thief as these people were entrusted with "the people's" money; not just another sweep under the rug, she'll probably get fired, and move onto the next media sensation.
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Old 03-26-2014, 02:46 PM   #48
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The thing is her husband did nothing illegal with the public facts as of today. It is horrible optics from fund raising perspective, as long as the $$ claimed came from administrative funds and they didn't touch the money the gov funneled to them, they are in the clear. As I had said non profits, can be very "enriching" and have loopholes you can drive a few semis through, if you are smart about it or you don't let your ego get too big. Entitled yes.. illegal most likely not.

You know it is a goldmine when there are MBA degrees that specialize in them.


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Well, good point.

But at least when something like this happens, let there be significant consequences. I'd love for there to be criminal consquences, more than your average thief as these people were entrusted with "the people's" money; not just another sweep under the rug, she'll probably get fired, and move onto the next media sensation.

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Old 03-26-2014, 07:14 PM   #49
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Smyth: B.C.?s pay-when-caught system needs to end

It was another day, another refund, and another reason for B.C. taxpayers to sum up their frustration in three words:

Enough is enough.

Enough of politicians gouging taxpayers with expensive perks and payoffs. Enough of the loopholes that keep their lavish spending secret. And enough of the worn-out excuses for their slow-to-change ways.

On Wednesday, Raj Chouhan, the NDP MLA for Burnaby-Edmonds, became the latest politician to cut a cheque to taxpayers for questionable personal spending.

Chouhan, the deputy Speaker of the legislature, refunded $2,200 to cover the cost of his wife’s taxpayer-financed trip to South Africa last year.

Chouhan’s wife accompanied him to the Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference in Johannesburg — the same conference attended by Speaker Linda Reid and her husband.

On Tuesday, Reid refunded more than $5,500 to taxpayers for her hubby’s trip.

Those embarrassments followed last week’s announcement by NDP MLA Jenny Kwan that she was repaying nearly $35,000 for family trips to Disneyland and Europe paid for by a government-contracted society in her Downtown Eastside riding.

One after another, veteran MLAs have been forced to apologize and pay the public back.

But there’s always an excuse.

Reid explained her husband-and-wife junket to Africa — the happy couple posted online snapshots of themselves petting giraffes and lion cubs — was nothing new.

“It’s what this place has always done,” she said.

And that’s the problem. Politicians are stuck in an outmoded and discredited system of entitlements, while people in the real world struggle to make ends meet.

“This buy-now-pay-when-caught routine needs to come to an end,” said Dermod Travis of the accountability group Integrity B.C.

But Reid has preferred to ride the gravy train, rather than derail it.

She became Speaker just nine months ago and promised to open up the legislature’s secretive system of MLA spending and privilege.

But when it came time for the annual parliamentary boondoggle to some sunny Commonwealth clime, she didn’t hesitate to stick taxpayers with the cost of her husband’s business-class plane ticket.

And Chouhan said that when he volunteered to pay his wife’s way to the event, Reid assured him it wasn’t necessary. He said Reid even told him as late as Tuesday night that he didn’t have to pay the money back.

“I thought I did everything right,” Chouhan said. “I asked the Speaker how it should be done. Now I feel part of something I should not be.”

Exactly. Now he’s sorry. So is Reid. But why didn’t they feel that way until the expenses were exposed?

“Reid is only paying it back because she got caught,” Jordan Bateman, of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, sums up bluntly.

“Other Speakers have simply done whatever they wanted, with little scrutiny.”

That’s because spending at the legislature traditionally has been kept secret and officially shielded from the Freedom of Information Act — something Bateman wants changed.

“It’s not enough to hide behind the rules any more,” he said. “Taxpayers are tired of loopholes and decades-old precedent. They expect more integrity.”

And that includes barely accountable organizations such as the Portland Hotel Society, contracted by government to provide services in the Downtown Eastside, the poorest neighbourhood in Canada.

Audits last week revealed a litany of lavish personal spending, missing documents and a shocking lack of oversight and controls.

The audits triggered the resignations of the society’s senior staff and board of directors, and led to Kwan’s shocking admission that she had taken family trips at the society’s expense.

Kwan said her now-estranged husband, then a PHS executive, had told her he had paid for the “family portion” of the trips.

“I can’t tell you how upsetting this is to me, and how truly sorry I am,” Kwan said.

All of these incidents should be a catalyst for change, Bateman said.

“These Kwan and Reid expenses are a tipping point. They have transcended the political world and are topics of conversation at water coolers and dinner tables. Taxpayers are demanding more accountability than ever before.”

The way forward is obvious: strict and enforceable new rules for full public accountability for MLAs, including requiring politicians to post the original receipts from their spending online — just as they do now in Alberta.

If we don’t clean this up, the waste and indulgence will just continue.

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Old 03-26-2014, 07:38 PM   #50
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There are plenty of "non profits" running around. Ever notice the bins you dump you clothes for "charity"? They have been proliferating like mushrooms the last few years. Why? Anyone with a white panel truck can form a non profit, servicing drop offs like that and get paid low 6 figures as an "executive". A lot of people on this board don't seem to understand the business angle of non profits. There are so many loopholes, anyone with mild business acumen can live well off and I dare say afford a house (on a lot) in Vancouver as their "career".

I am surprised no one at Revscene form a non profit..
One of those guys WAS on Revscene years ago from West Van.. he was super young and had a Gallardo and was totally open about how he bought it because he sold donated clothes back to the countries that originally made them after people dumped them in his bins. Disgusting.

Same thing goes for carbon offset credit companies that fund environmental projects... they all have fine print on their websites that say that an undetermined % of the money goes to the projects and a % to executives running the carbon offset company. Such bullshit.
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