Beating the Bushes

Who's that we see joining provincial Liberal House Leader Mike de Jong's office? Why it's none other than Joel McLaughlin, former president of the University of British Columbia Young Conservatives. Mr. McLaughlin, who will be working as Minister de Jong's junior aide, was also briefly a project manager for iTrend Research Group Inc. But Mr. McLaughlin, a lieutenant in the Canadian Forces Reserves, is best known amongst the scribbling classes for having been the media contact for the Republicans Abroad Canada in British Columbia during the 2004 election - as reported by The Vancouver Sun's Glenn Bohn. And, according to The Ubyssey's Sara Norman, the Edmonton-born Canadian citizen is in possession of "Republican paraphernalia such as a George W. Bush action figure and a 'Proud Republican' t-shirt."

19 Comments

Good for Mike, Joel sounds like a fine upstanding citizen who is serving his country both in the military and in politics.

I have a few bits of paraphernalia myself, my Ronald Reagan "Let's make America great again" button is a prized possession from my volunteer work in Michigan to help remove that idiot Carter from the White House.

Hey Sean,

You should track down the comments by Joel on this site and others, and then ask why the Premier's Office is hiring such an intolerant boob as this guy. With hires like Joel and that other young Republican nutbar they just hired, Chris Steinbach, it's only a matter of time before the actual Liberals are driven out of the organization, leaving the ever-important middle ground for the NDP to own.

Well, let's remember that Mike de Jong was also an army reservist so that's probably the connection right there.

As for Joel's Republican diaspora activities, that's a bit of a surprise. Throughout the softwood lumber dispute I have been amazed at the explicit anti-American tone that de Jong uses whenever he comments on the subject. It's like he's to the left of the NDP, ... Hell, to the left of the Marijuana Party!

I believe Joel's Bush "action figure" is actually a talking doll. But all that aside, Joel is a very smart young man who works very hard. I think it's also important to note that Minister de Jong is a federal Liberal so really, Joel's right of centre leanings really don't matter in this situation.

Budd ,

You are way off. I worked with de Jong for 2 years on the softwood file. He is in no way anti - American.

He's just pro BC. Not sure if you realized this , but de Jong works in POLITICS , where sometimes you have to take stands and posture to get your position clear.

Thats not left or right ...... its just a good negotiation tactic !!!

DUH !!!

Who you might be rolstone, I don't know and don't care. If you were once a key ministerial aide and aren't one now, tell us, why did you leave?

But for what it's worth you have proven my point. The TONE of de Jong's statements SOUNDED LIKE the sort of thing one would expect from some once-upon-a-time Waffle type like Mel Watkins or Jim Laxer. If you're telling us on good authority that was all just a theatrical sham for public consumption, that de Jong didn't actually believe a word of it, fine. Because if that's the case it means that de John really is a true Liberal!

Joel is one of the few Young Conservatives that I've met about whom I have good things to say. He works hard, he's more moderate than you'd believe (for instance, I wouldn't imagine this guy standing four square with industry on everything like a lot of these YCPC hacks), and he's definitely going to be around for the long haul (unless some of the darker aspects of his past come out, not that I know any, mind). Don't get me wrong, I would rather almost any progressive over a right-winder like Joel... but given who's in government, and who this minister was going to hire, Joel is a solid choice.

Congratulations on the job, Joel, I look forward to defeating your minister (or, at least, his government, since that particular minister seems untouchable).

They've been hiring uber conservatives almost exclusively lately. It would be nice to see someone a little more moderate. Hires like these make the BC Liberals look very very right wing - an image they don't want.

Sean,

Get a life.

What does the Bush stuff has anything to do with this story??

Linking the two is like suggesting that you are bias for the NDP as you used to work for their administration.

The whale watching company just got its newest customer of the month.

Well apart form how hard Martin Brown is said to be impossible to work for- why are there no real Liberals being hired?

They don't want to work for a government that is travelling the world to look at private health care models, not standing up against Harper's destruction of Child Care, refuses to properly solve the challenges in child protection, etc.

I wonder how Joel will feel when they tell him he can't be involved in Federal Politics at all!

Then again maybe he aspires to be a lobbyist and knew that he couldn't do that if he went to work for Harper.

Joel's an excellent hire who will do a great job for the ministry and the province....he has a lot of upward potential, and will be a very valuble part of the government.

Question for Max Power,

You seem to be quite certain of Joel McLaughlin's talents. Do you have some personal experience working with him?

Dear Budd,

Way to go man ....... u are so kool !

Its me Rolstone , let me answer your points in order

1) Sorry you dont know me , do your homework next time, I worked for de Jong 2003 - 2005 and managed Ida Chongs successful (much to your chagrin I am sure) campaign . I left in Oct to go back into the private sector ....... the legislature thing is not supposed to be career !

2) Dont be stupid ! Again to my earlier email, de Jong is not anti-american or a waffler , his comments on softwood were / are all about ensuring BC's best interests are represented ....... even you must be in favor of that !

3) Whats with the (obscure) references. Only socialist leftovers from the 70's still take about Laxer ! Are you trying to confuse people or is it just your (pseudo)intelectual snobbery ?

4) HAve you been in the game before , or do you just sit on the sideline as an armchair QB making your (increasingly irrelevent) postings on publiceye.

Speakking of waffles......I can just see u sitting there at the keyboard in your tightywhities , looking like Homer Simpson eating a stick of butter wrapped in a waffle !!!

5) Do your ever bother to proof read your rants before u send them, it really damages your credibility ...... its de Jong , not de John !

Despite the fact that you have no clue , your participation in democratic debate and free speech is appreciated

D

I think everyone is overlooking one of the most important things here:
Joel is a total hottie!!!

Hottie? This is sounding like another Dallas thread. Besides, if you're not the size of a bus, you need not apply.

Rolstone, your insincerity is kind of amusing. You know very well that de Jong was deliberately pandering to anti-American feelings in the manner in which he worded many of his statements. Whether or not he actually is anti-American is irrelevant, and I never claimed he was, as you well know.

As for the spelling corrections, you're correct about that, if nothing else.

Oh, ... , wait a second, there's one other thing you're right about. I was disappointed that Charley Beresford was not successful in winning Oak Bay away from Ida Chong, the fault of some silly bugger "newstories" about Beresford handing out leaflets around schools or some such non-item that was played by some media outlets as though it were some kind of impropriety. That, plus Vancouver Burrard, two or three seats in Burnaby and Coquitlam, another one in Mission, and another three or four in Kamloops and Prince George and Carol James would have been Premier.

Budd

I will be more sincere this time !

On your Berresford comments...... come on, you cant blame the media and (I agree) silly news stories (about her handing out bookmarks to children) as the reason for her loss.

Why did she lose :

1) NDP Central Campaign did not see it as a winable riding: James did not even campaign there to my knowledge

2) Money - She spent about 28 K (half as much as Kargianis and Cubberly) You cant run a decent campaign for that !!!

3) Local Campaign - failed to stack meetings , get callers on air , get letters to the editor, no sign demonstrations ..... all the kinds of things you need to do to win

4) Beresford herself - she could have killed that bookmark story after 1 day (instead of 5) but she was defensive/hostile with reporters. She should have just moved on .

Also it was Beresford that said on Easingwood when asked about inheritance / death taxes after saying she was against them added that it "was not above consideration" How dumb is that !!!

5) Of course it goes without saying (but better with saying) that the main reason Beresford lost is that Ida Chong ran a great campaign that:

* Identified over 10,000 supporters (and got them out to vote)
* had 700 lawn signs up (on houses not blvds)
* knocked on every household in the riding at least once
* did 14 burmashaves
* had smart media and outreach

PS - on your (long list) of seats for James to be Premier .......... Look at it another way .

If The BC Libs had held onto more seats in Suburban Vancouver and Vanc island......... James wouldnt even be leader anymore !!!

If "ifs and buts" were candy and nuts we'd all have a merry Christmas !!!

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