The Vancouver Scrum

On the move!

Agh! You’re still here? My new site and weblog, is now up and running; new posts are building up over there, never to be mirrored here. Go! What are you waiting for? All the stuff worth keeping has been migrated over to the new server, and I don’t anticipate making any more posts here.

Bloggers and webmasters: Update your links! Simply replace with in your blogrolls or bookmarks to point to the new site. Old posts will remain on this server for as long as the people at Blogger/Google allow them to remain; unfortunately, I’m not going to bother to come up with any way of converting permalinks on this blog to their corresponding posts on the new site. Yes, I plead laziness. I also realize the irony of switching away from Blogger just it starts to add features that the demanding blog nerds insist upon.

Thanks for reading and linking, and see you over at!

—Ian King, December 13, 2004

Saturday, October 26, 2002

Al Arsenault, Neanderthal.

Well-known Vancouver police officer and media whore Al Arsenault has been the latest player plunged into the 2002 civic elections with the revelation of his e-mail correspondence with a Belgian doctor where he rails against the prevailing view about Vancouver's drug problems.

Arsenault is well-known for his "right-wing" (a term that he himself does not shy away from) views on drugs; he's in favour of the lock 'em up, chase 'em out, let someone else deal with 'em approach to drug addicts. He's also a political animal himself -- he organized for onetime superintendent Vern Campbell's council candidacy under the centre-right Non-Partisan Association banner.

He expresses his high hopes for right-wing appointments to the Vancouver Police Board, despite the fact that, according to current police board chair and outgoing Mayor Philip Owen, the current board, with many members appointed by the previous NDP provincial government, has been non-political and non-ideological. Arsenault is also friends with NPA board members like Yvonne DeValone, who got on to the NPA board to forward her (and Arsenault's views) that the the city's proposed approach to drugs, with its emphasis on treatmeny of addicts and harm-reduction measures, is incorrect, and the law-and-order approach, which has been tried for decades, is the approach of choice. But let's not let the facts confuse Sgt. Arsenault; the whole damn city, in his eyes, is being run by junkie-loving left-wing looney-tunes turnin' the town into another Sodom and Gomorrah.

Philip Owen, the blandly conservative mayor who came to the difficult realization that the law-and-order approach to drugs didn't work, and who, late in his career, advocated a new-to-Vancouver plan? In Arsenault's world, Owen was brainwashing the city.

The current police board? Left wing "harm promotionists" and political hacks.

Doctors who specialize in addiction treatment, including current city councillor Fred Bass? They're wrong. Downtown Eastside Residents' Association? They're nuts. You get the idea. Everyone except for those who agree with Arsenault, such as the conservative Community Alliance business group, who just happen to now be tightly associater with the NPA, the party that rejected their former mayoral choice Philip Owen, is wrong.

What if Arsenault's wrong?
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