gordon.dewis.ca - Random musings from Gordon


Epic FAIL for the Gatineau Park Protection Committee

April 18, 2010 @ 09:00 By: gordon Category: Climbing, Current affairs, Environment, Seen on the 'net

The Gatineau Park News blog mentioned that the Gatineau Park Protection Committee released the following “press release” (of which I’m only quoting the English version after the jump) concerning their “review” of the full version of the Gatineau Park Ecosystem Conservation Plan document, which they “leaked” on their website:

GPPC Releases Full Conservation Plan

Chelsea, April 16, 2010 – The GPPC is releasing the Gatineau Park Ecosystem Conservation Plan— a full month after the National Capital Commission (NCC) claimed to do so.

“On March 17, the NCC fooled the public into believing it was releasing its park conservation plan, although it only provided a summary,” said GPPC co-chair Andrew McDermott. “After reading the plan from cover to cover, we understand why the NCC kept it out of the public eye:  it was rank with mistakes – 504 of them in the English version,” he said.

Although the NCC promised to table a conservation plan by 2008 in its 2005 Gatineau Park Master Plan (p. 20), the NCC has so far failed to make the full document public.

“Not only is the conservation plan two years late, and filled with mistakes, the NCC’s press conference on the subject was a circus of confusion, as demonstrated when CEO Marie Lemay falsely claimed that park visitorship was three times greater than it was 30 years ago,” said Mr. McDermott. “However, the 1980 Gatineau Park Master Plan (p.9) claimed that park visitorship in 1978 was ‘over two million persons,’ while the NCC’s most recent figures place it at 1.7 million,” he added.

The GPPC also notes with concern Ms. Lemay’s continued disregard for the basic facts about Gatineau Park, in particular with regard to its boundaries and land mass.

“In a March 19, 2010 open letter, Ms. Lemay claimed without evidence that the St.-Raymond Boulevard Loblaws and Tim Horton’s had never been in the park. Well, we sent the NCC two maps proving the opposite – one from the NCC, the other from Environment Quebec – and challenged Ms. Lemay to a debate on the issue,” said Mr. McDermott. “And she still claims the park’s size has increased by 700 hectares, while it has in fact decreased by some eight square kilometres,” he added.

“A reading of the full conservation plan reinforces our conviction that it’s a wholesale swindle perpetrated at taxpayer expense; however, we’ve posted in on the GPPC Web site as a public service to allow all Canadians to see for themselves just how flawed it is,” Mr. McDermott said.

“The conservation plan is predicated on keeping people out of the park by invoking the precautionary principle, which boils down to saying ‘We don’t have much evidence confirming the public is damaging ecosystems, but let’s keep them out, just in case,’ particularly where rock climbers are concerned,” Mr. McDermott said.

The document can be consulted at: http://www.gatineauparc.ca/documents_en.html


Information: Andrew McDermott: 613-316-1320 ; 819-827-1803

Reading that you might think that the “504 mistakes” in the English version are serious mistakes that throw into question the very plan itself. And you’d be forgiven for thinking that.

Instead, according to a lengthy rant of a comment by Andrew McDermott on the Gatineau Park News article about the GPPC “leak”, the bulk of these “mistakes” are actually relatively trivial punctuation and font issues that are often found in documents that have been translated from French to English but have not gone through a comparative edit process to clean them up, such as the document in question.

According to the GPPC, there are 151 instances where a colon was preceded by a space, which is the rule in French. A further 59 instances were identified where “e.g.” or “i.e.” was not followed by a comma.

I hope you’re sitting down for the next one, because it’s a doozy…

In some of the illustrations there is English text that is italicized, while French text is not.

(I trust you survived that shocking revelation. If not, my apologies and condolences to your next of kin.)

They also identified some grammatical errors that are not uncommon in translations.

They didn’t, however, identify a large number of factual problems with the report. One they did mention concerns the description of the Eardley Escarpment that I mentioned in my Limestone versus Granite entry on April 1st.

Now, let’s be clear about something: I’m not saying that the punctuation and other problems they’ve identified don’t exist in the English version of the document that I received from the NCC a couple of weeks ago. They do.

Nor am I saying that the punctuation and other issues are so trivial that they need not  be fixed. They do.

But I expect they will be resolved before the full version of the GPECP is eventually officially released by the NCC.

The Gatineau Park Protection Committee has failed in a particularly spectacular manner by focusing on the trivial rather than important issues with the GPECP. They could have done an in-depth analysis of the plan like I did for Appendix 2, but they didn’t.

(Oh, and for the record, technically I beat them to the punch in “leaking” the plan when I posted Appendix 2 of the full plan as part of my blog entry that looked at it. But I didn’t view the act of “leaking” part of the plan as important as the plan itself because it’s wasn’t.)

21 Responses to “Epic FAIL for the Gatineau Park Protection Committee”

  1. Well, Mr. Dewis, seems like you’re more into massaging your ego than in helping the public get information.

    I did ask you to send me the full Conservation Plan, which you didn’t.

    And why did you not post it on your site. Reluctant to let the other children play with your marbles, are you?

    Looks like your jealous of us for having done what you didn’t have the imagination, or public spirit, to do. Shame on you!

    While we try to educate public opinion, you are wallowing in a delusional narcissistic ego trip. “Look at me! I had the plan first! I didn’t share it because I prefer to control information! They took the time to read it and find 504 mistakes, but that’s trivial! I did the first real analyis! Loook at meeee!”

    You pathetic little “m’a-tu-vu …

    A few weeks ago, the GPPC “analysed” the only available version of the Gatineau Park Conservation Plan, calling it an empty shell and cynical exercise designed to keep the public out of the park, while allowing residents to continue despoiling its environment.

    This plan flows out of the 2005 Gatineau Park Master Plan, which mandated conservation as the priority for park management. However, since adoption of the Master Plan in May 2005, the NCC has allowed significant residential development in the park – in direct violation of every Master Plan ever written. As well, 119 new houses have been built in the park since 1992.

    Although the plan pays lip service to the damage done by private properties, it fails to address the issue head on or to provide a strategy for tackling it.

    The Conservation Plan lists three main factors leading to the park’s ecological degradation: invasive species; recreation and visitorship; private properties (First Revised Draft, March 2008, page A-2-7). It also confirms that private properties are deteriorating the park’s largest lakes through water pollution, habitat fragmentation and the erosion of riparian habitats (page 87).

    Yet, in its ‘Priority Ranking of Top Conservation Actions’ (p. 126), the plan fails to address residential proliferation, saying instead it will limit ‘water-borne human activities and swimming’ to protect natural vegetation on the shores of La Pêche, Philippe and Meech Lakes. So, according to NCC ‘logic,’ swimming and canoeing are greater ecological threats than shoreline construction with use of dynamite and serious sedimentation of fish habitat.

    As further evidence of the NCC’s timid commitment to conservation, the agency removed any mention of private property development in the park in its November 2009 Conservation Plan submission to the board.

    As for our reading of the final Conservation Plan: it was a very painful exercise. A document written by amateurs. No blood, no style … An utter and complete hatchet job. 504 mistakes!

    To say our analysis is trivial is the apotheosis of imbecility… That the plan contained 504 mistakes confirms the agency is totally incompetent, and suggests the document contains other serious flaws, some of which we have identified.

    For instance, the Conservation/segregation plan’s main ideological flaw is that it invokes the precautionary principle as justification for keeping people out of the park. This reasoning essentially boils down to saying “While we don’t have much hard evidence confirming the public is destroying several ecosystems, let’s keep them out, just in case.”

    Evidence: the NCC says it will develop a green transportation plan although the “levels of many of the region’s air pollutants are declining as a result of pollution abatement agreements signed by Canada and the United States in the last decade” (p. 22). Totally ass backwards.

    According to a senior research fellow at King’s College, the language of precaution comes from the political right. It is he says, the language of paranoia and misanthropy, which boils down to saying: “Action without substantiation is justified.”

    Says this research fellow: “The precautionary principle is, above all else, an invitation to those without evidence, expertise or authority, to shape and influence political debates. It achieves that by introducing supposedly ethical or environmental elements into the process of scientific, corporate and governmental decision-making (http://www.durodie.net/pdf/PrecautionaryPrincipleKillingInnovation.pdf).

    And although there is ample evidence of the ecological hecatomb perpetrated by park residents (water pollution, habitat fragmentation, erosion of riparian habitats, p. 62), the NCC will not crack down on its friends/masters. Instead, it will target the public, the park’s real owners, for its conservation/segregation actions.

    As well, along with the precautionary principle, the plan rests on an adaptive management philosophy. Although less reactionary than the precautionary principle, this approach boils down to trial and error.

    So, in short, the philosophy of the Conservation plan is as follows: action without evidence or justification, and implementation of measures whose effect we haven’t a clue of… All of which serves to keep the public out of the park, while allowing residents to continue raping the environment…

    That’s way more anaylysis than what you provided, Mr. m’a-tu-vu.

    You’re the kind of individual that makes me ashamed to be human.


    • gordon says:

      Yes, you did ask me to send you a copy of the GPECP. And, yes, I brushed you off.

      If you read my comment on Gatineau Park News’ entry on March 26th which you replied to, you’ll see that I said exactly why I wasn’t posting it. (I also told you exactly how I obtained my copy in a comment on their March 23rd entry.)

      I’ll go further and say that my goal wasn’t to “leak” the report and thus try to have some petty victory over the NCC, which apparently is the goal of the GPPC. It was to look at the report as objectively as possible and investigate the justifications behind the call to reduce the number of climbing routes.

      I did my own legwork to obtain a copy of the report. Why didn’t you?

      Nitpicking at punctuation is hardly the way to get people to take you seriously, Jean-Paul. You and Andrew may well have identified some serious problems with the GPECP, but no one is going to hear your message because they’ll tune you out as soon as they see that the first two or three problems you mention are related to the use of commas, colons and spaces.

      • Actually the GPPC has a following greater than you suggest, and our goal is not to nitpick the ncc, but to bring to light the many administrative shortfalls of the commission and to help to the people of Canada make fullmuse of their park.

        The ncc would like to crack down on climbers and other public uses of the park, but turn a blind eye to building of residences and infrastructure in the park.

        Gordon, you seek to glorify yourself, rather than help the people.


        • gordon says:

          Andrew/Jean-Paul/whoever: If your goal really is not to nitpick the NCC then why is your message focusing on nitpicking about commas, colons and spaces?

  2. You argue like a navel-gazing child.

    You had the report and kept it to yourself — perhaps to avoid embarrassing the NCC.

    Well, I did the leg work, which included asking you. And I managed to get a copy. Posted the very next day… Shared it with the public, while you withheld it…

    A lot of people are hearing our message, based on our performance over the last nine years, all of which has been in the public interest.

    You won’t win any debating contests. Too narcissistic and closed-minded…

    • gordon says:

      The difference between you and me is that I don’t have the huge hate-on for the NCC that you apparently do. I don’t automatically assume that the NCC is hiding some secret agenda and that eveything they do is suspect, but I also don’t agree with every decision they make.

      The full version of the GPECP is available from the NCC. I was under no obligation to provide you (or anyone else) with a copy, particularly as all you had to do was call the NCC and ask them for a copy like I did.

      The GPPC had an opportunity to make serious comments about the plan, but all it did was nitpick about commas, colons and spaces.

  3. Wow, are you ever confused …

    You just spew words like a babbling child … All navel-gazing grunt with no meaning.

    Except for your critique of the appendix, which obviously wasn’t written by an idiot…

  4. >>You just spew words like a babbling child … All navel-gazing grunt with no meaning.
    >>You won’t win any debating contests. Too narcissistic and closed-minded…

    Those are fascinating comments given that Jean-Paul Murray issues seven personal insults and calls Gordon two nasty names.

    It would seem that Mr. Murray is incapable of being civil. He storms on here and acts like a 10-year-old. I know that you’ve filled me with confidence that GPPC organizational head is fully up it’s organizational arse.

    The best part, though, is that now Murray’s comments are forever linked to the GPPC. Everyone who Googles up GPPC is going to be able to see his childish ranting for all time. Well done JPM – you have done the GPPC proud.

    Doesn’t the GPPC have anyone smart enough to know not to be an abusive jackass in public?

  5. I don’t believe they’re names, only facts from what I’ve seen.

    And the words you use show your childish mentality.

    The GPPC site exists to inform the public about the park; yours is self-referential and narcissistic–foisting your presence on a world that really doesn’t need another navel-gazer…

    Oh, yes, and Mr. Murray is so rude, abrasive and uncivil. I’ve heard that one before … from those who defend the status quo.

    Well, the GPPC has several important achievements in pushing the public interest forward …

    And what have you done for the common good lately, Mr. I won’t share my toys cause I’m too selfish, narrow-minded and want all the attention for myself.

    Shame on you!

  6. I know I have a childish mentality, so if it shows, then things are as they should be.

    So let me be sure I’ve got this whole situation straight…

    You asked the owner of this blog for a copy of a document he had acquired. A document that was freely available and could be had from the originator. He didn’t give it to you, but told you where he could get it. So you get pissed-off and rant like a six-year-old on the playground. Right…

    As a person who regularly has to deal with this sort of crap, this is a situation I’m familiar with. It was correct for Gordon to not give you a copy of a freely available document. You should have got it directly from the source. The reason for that, although not obvious to someone with your double-digit IQ, is that by getting a copy from Gordon you could blame him for your mistakes – you could say he gave you a bad copy, altered the copy, etc. Since the document was freely available, you have no excuse for not getting it as soon as you were aware. It is demonstrable, therefore, that you are both lazy and incompetent. That’s not calling you a name, that is a fact supported by the evidence.

    Nobody has any ethical or moral obligation to do your work for you. I suspect the issue is that you were an ass to someone at the NCC and they told you to bite when you contacted them. To cover up that failing you’re here blaming Gordon.

    Whether or not the GPPC has any achievements is largely irrelevant. Every time you make an abusive post as their representative, you damage the GPPC. Personally, I’d never heard of GPPC before yesterday, and it’s not like I have no interest in the park, so if I can be so bold to suggest it, you need more publicity.

    Of course, you’re giving it more publicity here. Lots of people read this blog and see that the co-chair of the GPPC is a petulant, lazy child. That’s what reflects on the GPPC.

  7. Doesn’t matter that you haven’t heard of us; people who matter have.

    Not only did you get my point totally wrong, you are irrelevant.

    Besides, I don’t argue with fleas…

    “Mediocritate circumdatus absolvo vos omnes.”

    Squids of the world unite; you have nothing to lose but your irrelevance.

  8. I love to argue with assholes though, thanks for providing the fun!

    I see your Latin snark and raise you:

    “Caput tuum in ano est.”

    Squids (cephalopods in general), incidentally, are hardly irrelevant. They form a huge percentage of the ocean biomass. They are arguably the dominant life form in the ocean.

  9. Typical attempt to shoot the messenger who holds valuable knowledge.

    Not only are you irrelevant, you make irrational arguments.

    Poor little squid… All ego, narcissism, insults and claptrap. No reasoning ability…

    You may eat my dust…

  10. Au moins j’ai le courage de signer mon nom — et toi, petit poltron?

  11. I don’t sign my name because I don’t need to. I’m easy enough to track down, it’s not like I hide. I also speak French.

    I’ve made no irrational arguments. I’ve not made an argument at all. YOU are trying to make some argument and you’re certainly being irrational.

    Your repeated claims of narcissism are telling though. Narcissism is a debilitating self-love. The only person on this thread who has spent time blowing his own horn is you. Therefore, I conclude, on the basis of this evidence, that you are the narcissist.

    In psychological terms, what you are doing is called “projection”. People who do a lot of projection often need medication. Have you considered contacting a mental health professional? I hear they are very good in Quebec.

    As for reasoning ability… well, my statements are backed up in fact and supported by your own kindergarten-quality ramblings. I guess that shows where the reasoning ability is.

    I am all about insults, however.

    Nobody is shooting a messenger since you don’t have a message. Or if you do have a message, you haven’t transmitted it yet. And if I’m irrelevant, why do you keep replying?

  12. Cesse de te faire aller le clapet, et va donc consulter le site Web du CPPG: http://www.gatineauparc.ca.

    Qui sait; cela pourrait un tantinet éduquer ton ignorance.

    Merci du diagnostique, M. le docteur la pieuvre qui raison sans preuve…

    Tout à coup je me sens mieux…

    Bla, bla, et re bla

  13. What makes you think I haven’t read your web site? I had visited it long before you commented here for the first time. You’re batting .000 here J-P.

    This exchange is ample proof of your projection and narcissism. I’d be happy to report my observations to your psychologist.

    Looks like the public thinks you’re an ass too:

  14. Funny how a weak mind will equate the public with a park landowners and business interests…

    You are a seriously confused, rude and weak-minded individual with heavily ignorant overtones. I suggest you begin rehab by consulting and reading the GPPC web site: http://www.gatineauparc.ca.

    That’s reading, where you connect the words in logical sequence and then try to deduce what the writer meant–takes effort, but others have managed to get good results.

    In the meantime, in response to your choildish and mindless insults, I offer you a quote — one of my favourites — from a great writer and invite you to consider if that she fits:

    “He was one of the numerous and varied legion of dullards, of half-animated abortions, conceited, half-educated coxcombs, who attach themselves to the idea most in fashion only to vulgarize it and who caricature every cause they serve, however sincerely.”

  15. pete brown says:

    As long as Mr. Murray’s reputation precedes himself, I could care little what he says…

  16. My job is done. The goal has been achieved in this matter.

  17. Oh, and as a sort of FYI… “park landowners and business interests” are the public.

    You see Jean-Paul Murray, I have read the contents of http://www.gatineauparc.ca I find it to be reasonably well-spelled, although entirely lacking in substance. Given your blatherings here, I’m not especially surprised by that.

    It’s important to get the URL of your site posted enough times alongside your douchebaggery so that search engine indexing will pick it up. Now when people search Gatineau Park Protection Committee, they’ll have a good chance at seeing this thread and gain a deeper understanding of 1/3 of the committee.

    So please, rave on!


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