Biblitz delivers advise

ASK Biblitz about B.C. 'Billies.

'Upon arrival in Vancouver, the first thing to meet my eye was a notice, signed by the Chief of Police, warning me against confidence tricksters.'


WELCOME!

What is a B.C. 'Billy?

Great Canadian artist and local hero Emily Car on 'western cultural vacuity.'

LOTS more B.C. 'Billy Dillies beginning with a decades-old 'leaky condo' epidemic affecting primarily but not limited to overpriced condos.

Sign the Citiizen Initiative Petition to Repeal the HST
. (You're a B.C. 'Billy if you don't!)

Biblitz replies:

It's a derogatory term to describe the favored status afforded to certain notorious B.C. fraudsters, criminals and typical fifth-rate homeboys who have somehow acquired admission to the province's inner circle. Favoritism may take the form of public subsidies offered exclusively to, say, homebuilders or it may extend mysteriously to immunity from prosecution in circumstances that would surely put an outsider behind bars. 'Billies' success, if you can call it that, lies in their web of circular accountability, which effectively precludes proper formal inquiry.

The best illustration is in the letter to the Economist Biblitz submitted March 17/10:

What-ho, Economeister,

Biblitz roared like billy-o at Canada's Parliament returns seal of approval, March 13/10, p. 42, especially the bit about 'Monty Python's Lumberjack Song (see right column), which celebrates the lifestyle choices of a cross-dressing, gender-liberated woodcutter from British Columbia who wishes he'd been a girlie, just like his dear Mama.' Or Maman, if you're Quebecois.



In truth, however, you've rather understated the Canada problem and its peculiar resonance in British Columbia, home to the city of Vancouver, which officials boast is 'the best place on earth.' It's certainly the best place if you have a scam worthy of Howe Street's infamous stock and real estate promoters, who flourish here. How is this so, you ask? Because B.C. is positively fraud free, though not in the way you might expect. Alas, as many of us have discovered to our peril, the province and increasingly the rest of the country no longer have the wherewithal to prosecute or even investigate fraud.

Ilegally renting tiny matchbox condos in downtown Vancouver to legions of unwary foreign students at hugely inflated prices is considered by local authorities to be merely a private matter. A case of identity theft in which the victim's college roommate is literally bankrupting him - openly cashing income tax rebates obtained by false filings - has somehow not attracted the intervention of authorities. Indeed, Biblitz continues to receive mail from a previous tenant claiming our address as the location of her sex therapy business, a revelation contained in detailed accounting records mysteriously dropped on our doorstep in a loose file, which we mailed immediately to tax authorities, who couldn't have cared less! The once legendary Canadian Postal Service was able after repeated pleas to stem the tide of 'misaddressed' mail for awhile, but the occasional phone bill still indicating ours as the principal address for obviously nefarious purposes occasionally escapes detection.

Is it any wonder, then, how a decades-old leaky condo epidemic continues to infect low-rise, highrise and even brand new single-family housing with barely a whimper? How the attempted police cover-up of the lethal Tasering of a Polish visitor at the airport has still not prompted the creation of an independent police review body even after a full public inquiry? How time again, B.C. courts somehow fail to find the Hells Angels biker gang a criminal organization despite members' repeated convictions?
teaman90
Most troubling is the de facto standard of no accountability such Third World gaps in the legal system impose, and B.C. 'billies - a descriptor Google now recognizes - seem to like it that way. With no one at all - neither consumer associations nor public authorities - looking over their shoulders, fraudsters here are free to inflict their trade on innocent consumers with no penalty while carefully excluding anyone from the enterprise who might threaten the status quo. The most revealing demographic here in the wild west is that of the highly-skilled, educated and experienced outsider one invariably meets in the unemployment line.

Yours sincerely,

Leo Biblitz
Vancouver, B.C.
Banana Canada

The evolution of western 'billies:

We Tell Ourselves Stories in Order to Live

Collected Nonfiction

Hardcover
By Joan Didion

... The future always looks good in the golden land, because no one remembers the past. Here is where the hot wind blows and the old ways do not seem relevant, where the divorce rate is double the national average and where one person in thirty-eight lives in a trailer. Here is the last stop for all those who come from somewhere else, for all those who drifted away from the cold and the past and the old ways. Here is where they are trying to find a new life style, trying to find it in the only places they know to look: the movies and the newspapers. ...(From Some Dreamers of the Golden Dream in I, Life Styles in the Golden Land, pgs. 13-14)




In Los Angeles all the loose objects in the country were collected, as if America had been tilted and everything that wasn't tightly screwed down had slid into Southern California. (Substitute B.C. for California in this famous analogy by Nobel laureate Saul Bellow and you get the picture).

turkey

Biblitz, those turkey feathers of yours give you away! You, sir, are a wacky weed-wonderful west coast, left coast B.C. 'billy, a fifth-rater Toronto wouldn't touch with a fumigated bargepole!

The Economist

Canada's Parliament returns seal of approval

Bereft of controversy, lawmakers chew seal meat and sing a sexist anthem

March 13/10

... Fortunately, a catchy, impeccably progressive Canadian anthem fit for the 21st century has already been written (albeit by Brits): Monty Python's Lumberjack Song, which celebrates the lifestyle choices of a cross-dressing, gender-liberated woodcutter from British Columbia who wishes he'd been a girlie just like his dear Mama. (-- p. 42)

How to spot 'billy by his stinkin' thinkin':

Homicide

A Year on the Killing Streets

Paperback
By David Simon

For 'Billyville cops, hard-core billyness is generally regarded with as much disdain and humor as the hard-core ghetto culture.

... You may come from the same mountain stock as the rest of Pigtown, but by a detective's reasoning, that alone doesn't make you a true billy. Maybe you're just another white boy; maybe you finished twelfth grade at 'Billyville High and nailed down a decent job and moved out to Island 'Billyville or Interior 'Billyville. Or maybe you're like Donald Worden, who grew up in Northern 'Billyville , or like Donald Kincaid, speaking in a mountain drawl and sporting that tatoo on the back of one hand. On the other hand, if you've spent your life drinking at the St. 'Billy's Tavern on West 'Billy Avenue and the other half shuttling back and forth from the B.C. Provincial Court for theft, disorderly conduct, resisting arrest and possession of B.C. 'bud , then to a 'Billyville detective you most certainly are a billy-boy, a white-trash red-neck, a city goat, a dead-brained cul-de-sac of heredity, spawned in the shallow end of a diminishing gene pool. ... Make your own substitutions as Biblitz has. Frightening, isn't it? (-- pgs. 420-421)

Historical Howe Street cons:

Samuel Marchbanks' Almanack

Hardcover
By Robertson Davies

To Amyas Pilgarlic, ESQ.

Dear Pil:

... Upon arrival in Vancouver, the first thing to meet my eye was a notice, signed by the Chief of Police, warning me against confidence tricksters. It told me in detail how I might expect them to work. I would be approached, first of all, by someone who would try to make friends: this would be "The Steerer" who would eventually steer me to "The Spieler," who would sell me Stanley Park or the harbour at a bargain price. Not long after I had read this I was approached by a crafty-looking woman carrying a handful of pasteboards. "Juwanna buy four chances on the Legion car?" she cried, blocking my way. "Madam, you are wasting your time," said I; "I know you for what you are - a Steerer." She shrank away, muttering unpleasantly. Never let it be said that Marchbanks failed to heed a warning.

.... Yours gaggingly,

Sam. (-- pgs. 109-110)

Get this!

McMafia

A Journey through the Global Criminal Underworld

Hardcover
By Misha Glenny

... western Canada is home to the largest per capita concentration of organized criminal syndicates in the world. ...

Nelson and the surrounding area have been in steady economic decline for a couple of decades. Although its tourist and media industries are growing, these have not yet compensated for the slow demise of the traditional mining sector and the crises that have afficted the logging industry. President George W. Bush dealt the most punishing blow ... in his imposition of a 27 percent tax on Canadian softwood sales into the United States. (Note: And Banana Canada, with no expertise or even much interest in international trade law, put down its dukes and played dead!) ... Many of those who once worked in the traditional industries have moved into marijuana. ... (From Chapter 10, Buddies, pgs. 213- 231)