Neighbourhood activist Jak King hammers Vision Vancouver secrecy

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      Grandview-Woodland resident Jak King doesn’t doubt that Vision Vancouver members are operating under the cloak of community volunteers in different neighbourhoods.

      Vision executive director Stepan Vdovine has admitted that the ruling civic party has “people working” in various communities, specifically mentioning Grandview, Kitsilano, and Mount Pleasant.

      “We’ll keep our eyes and ears open,” King said in jest during a phone interview with the Straight.

      What he doesn’t understand is that although Vision has openly acknowledged that the West End Community Action Network in another part of town is its “first neighbourhood committee”, it wouldn’t identify the others across the city.

      King has a natural interest in these things. He’s the president of the Grandview-Woodland Area Council, a grassroots group that has questioned city hall’s planning processes. He’s also a spokesperson for the Coalition of Vancouver Neighbourhoods, a new alliance of 18 associations demanding respectful treatment of communities from the city government.

      King said that although everyone is entitled to political association, it’s another thing if there’s some sort of undeclared “caucus” operating in neighbourhoods under a different guise.

      “The question Vision has to answer is why they want to keep these things secret,” King said.

      Keeping it that way is “certainly underhanded”, according to King, who described Vdovine’s defence that privacy laws bar disclosure of information as “nonsense”.



      Okay Jak

      Nov 13, 2013 at 12:56pm

      I want to know the names of every single person in those 18 associations that he is now representing. I demand that they declare their affiliation every time they talk to people in Vancouver. Otherwise we can't be sure they aren't secretly trying to sway people to their cause by pretending to be ordinary citizens with opinions.

      Brian Greene

      Nov 14, 2013 at 5:16am

      European fascism in the 1920s and 1930s was launched with the aid of sleeper cells in neighbourhoods, viz the Brown Shirts in Germany, who secretly reported to political party apparati and made lists of thousands of activists who would later be intimidated or killed as the fascists role to power.

      This is no joke. Our very human rights and democracy are at peril. Taken together with the robocalls, political signage at polling stations, and other assaults on our electoral laws, this is all part of a growing pattern of corporate-financed manipulation of the electorate.

      Be wary, very wary. The generation who watched the rise of fascism in Europe is no longer with us, but that doesn't mean we cannot and should not respect and heed their memory.

      Okay Jak

      Nov 14, 2013 at 9:47am

      Brian Greene - Lol! I'm more worried about people like you than Vision's Secret Indoctrination and Assassination Cells.

      Rami Jura

      Nov 14, 2013 at 10:02pm

      Maybe its just me but Vision Vancouver is starting to seriously creep me out.

      No joke

      Nov 14, 2013 at 11:56pm

      No need to bring fascism into the discussion.

      A democratic government that infiltrates and spies on the political activities of its law-abiding citizens clearly demonstrates that the government no longer believes that it has the support of the people who elected them.

      And this very act of spying gives the people another very good reason to no longer trust the government they elected, and even more motivation to elect a different government.


      Nov 15, 2013 at 3:32pm

      "No joke" is bang on. A democratic government that infiltrates groups of law abiding citizens has moved into disturbing territory.

      Hopefully in a year's time voters will show Vision how they feel about their elected officials treating democracy as a doormat.

      Vision is all about keeping big profits flowing for the development industry, the rest is just a sideshow.