What they are saying in the law journals: Conflicts of interest | The Seven Deadly Sins of prosecutors | Courageous prosecutor Terry Hinz | Miazga | Hansen | Quinney | Defence lawyers who perhaps love the Crown too much: Holgate | Dufour | Axworthy | The lawyers in the following waltzes of their clients to guilty verdicts: | Howard Gowan | Leon Walchuk | Don Smith
"Don't judge us against perfection" said Romanow (at the nomination meeting of heir-apparent Chris Axworthy, June 5, 1999). "Judge us against the alternatives" If the alternatives show themselves to be honest, Saskatchewan citizens might just get an opportunity to make such a judgment. Saskatchewan voters have not ever expected perfection, but they have expected honesty. Letter to Roy Romanow, July 25, 1993 (From Richard Klassen, before a lawsuit was ever laid) He got Bob Mitchell to send the reply.
Chris Axworthy has come and gone and once again Saskatchewan people will be asked to go to the polls. Lorne Calvert, who beat Axworthy for the premier position has shown himself to be mealy mouthed.
Sam Sambavisam, convicted and unrepentent wife-beater resigned his candidacy in Saskatoon Meewasin "for the good of the party". Romanow may not appreciate the loyalty of this lying scoundrel. He might also want to answer the question we have put to him: Why did he and Janice MacKinnon go to Martensville in 1991 during the height of the Martensville frenzy?
Now that Joyce Milgaard finally got his attention, and Saskatchewan has to pay $6 million, maybe he would like to address some of the other blots on his Saskatchewan record. If he had followed Judge Gold's recommendations right after they were made, instead of trying to starve the Milgaard family into sumission, it could have cost much less. Ron and Linda Sterling (left) were acquitted but in many minds, they have not been properly exonerated.
Marie Klassen, (right) had her absurd charges stayed but Head of Public Prosecutions Richard Quinney maintained the trials were stopped because the children were too trauatized, casting doubt on her innocence and on the innocence of the rest of her family. That her husband Peter Klassen, was put away for four years as part of a guilty plea entered on his behalf, while he still maintained his innocence, by defence lawyer Jay Watson certainly contributed to her rapid decline in health and her death in 1995. Premier Roy Romanow and Justice Minister Bob Mitchell knew these crimes never happened!
Of course the Saskatchewan economy is a worry to us all. The balanced budget was touted as a superhuman achievement after the debt racked up during the years of Grant Devine. One must ask just how much smoke and mirrors was involved in all of this.
The prosecution of members of the Devine government played right into the Saskatchewan popular mentality of finding a scapegoat. In fact these trials revealed very little about where the money went. The humiliation of Senator Berntson may come back to haunt Roy.
In fact, the NDP bought right into the crazy social services policies which were begun under Grant Devine. The failure to deal fairly with foster parents, shipping foster kids off for very expensive counselling with moneygrabbing therapists (Carol Bunko-Ruys, Anita Grosse, Liz Newton, etc.) and sending foster parents off for very expensive respite holidays turned out to be far more expensive than simply giving the foster parents reasonable resources to work with in the first place.
For almost the entire three years that the Ross children were with Dale and Anita Klassen, the kids were being routinely taken in for counselling sessions , more and more sessions when they did not improve. These foster parents were not equipped to deal with such disturbed children: they had specifically requested foster-children with no sexual-abuse problems. They were never given the monthly stipends for high-level care that were paid to Marilyn Thompson, the totally inexperienced foster care giver in Warman, where Michael was placed after Dale and Anita demanded he be removed from their home. It would open the eyes of many people if a full accounting of the spending on the Ross children from May, 1991 on was disclosed. Put together the "therapy" with the cost of the police "investigation," add in the trials and preliminary hearings, add in Martensville and we would see a shocking figure - an amount which the Romanow government did not hesitate to put out. They can chalk it all up as a terrible mistake, but apart from the crimes committed against citizens in the course of this spending, it was fiscally irresponsible. There are many under-qualified therapists now working with children in schools, closed and open custody facilities and directly through social services who are overpaid, who are doing more harm than good and who were hired by the Romanow administration.
The Romanow government is up against a financial wall regarding its failure to deal with the nurses. Settling this will cost a lot of money and no doubt Saskatchewan people will grumble.
However, as taxpayers are called upon to pay damages to the dozens, if not hundreds of people who have been damaged by the false charges of sex crimes against children, we would do well to remember that we paid to damage them. It is only fair that we pay to fix the damage. Roy still has a chance to do the right thing: admit the mistakes that were made, demonstrate that steps are being taken to stop further such mistakes, and settle now while the dollar figures are still manageable. This is a pit which has no bottom.
The STC lost a few million dollars in unbilled invoices. The Channel Lake affair was costly. The big profits from uranium have not been shared with Saskatchewan people, but our depleted mines are going to be used to store the hazardous wastes no one else will take.
Then there is the cost that we as taxpayers are shelling out to take part in NATO's war against the people of Yugoslavia. Money can be viewed from many perspectives.
April, 1999: Roy Romanow finessed the nurses back to work after they had shown themselves to have a high level of public support for their strike for reasonable working conditions.
May 1999: Joyce Milgaard forces them to pay David Milgaard what he has been promised.
inJusticebusters have relentlesslessly pushed to make public the criminal wrongdoing of the Saskatchewan Justice System in its creation of the Foster Parent "Scandal of the Century" and the Martensville "Nightmare". We have properly identified the first wrongdoers as Saskatoon City Police Sgt. Brian Dueck and Saskatchewan Social Services contract social worker Carol Bunko-Ruys in Saskatchewan's first run at the cult scare hysteria, and RCMP Constable Claudia Bryden and social worker Rod Butler in the latter.
As far as the Department of Social Services goes, we have gone after them as being responsible for what goes on in their department and have had Greg Walen brought before the law society for his conflict of interest in simultaneously representing Dueck, the Ross Children and the Minister.
In the Justice Department, we have nailed Justice Minister Robert Mitchell as being completely culpable and we have not spared the head of Public Prosecutions Richard Quinney, who we call a Public Menace. See the recantation of the main witness in the Foster Parent Scandal!
Did he really think we were going to let him off the hook? That we are dazzled by his intelligence, wit, charm and fluency with the majority of Saskatchewan citizens who vote for him? These are the very qualities which make his public silence so despicable. At any time during the illegal prosecutions a simple word from Roy could have quelled the fever. That word is "Sorry!"
But no! Roy Romanow is a lawyer. And lawyers always advise clients not ever to admit culpability. Lawyers are above common courtesy and human decency. As can be seen from Mr. Romanow's Curriculum Vitae, reprinted from the government website, he took his law degree, and the values that went with it, straight into politics.
Roy Romanow served his time as Attorney General, and was A-G while David Milgaard was charged, tried, wrongly convicted and began to serve his 22 years. When the Supreme Court of Canada ordered Milgaard a new trial, Romanow wouldn't give him one. Romanow does not like to admit his mistakes. Romanow is a lawyer.
In October, 1991. Roy Romanow was finally elected Premier. He'd certainly put in his time and had kept his eyes squarely on that prize. He had promised to have members of the Grant Devine government investigated and charged if any wrongdoing was found. The RCMP did its investigation and eventually laid charges. Trials were held, some convictions were secured and it still goes on. This was a popular move at the time. Many Saskatchewan people were asking where the money had gone so Roy set out to make the former government account for it!
So in June, 1991, as the Foster Families had moved through their preliminary inquiries (with only one conviction) and nine people --includng members of the Saskatoon City Police and the R.C.M.P. --were very publically arrested as being part of a Satanic Cult which had been diddling children and taking porn flicks out in Mennonite Martensville, Roy Romanow knew very well that this was hysteria, generated by questionable entities with even more questionable credentials.
Social Services people, Anita Grosse, the Rev. Colin Clay marshalled resources in a military-style operation to storm into Martensville to stir up even more hysteria -- on the flimsy pretext that they were going to "heal the community!" It was a media frenzy and more than one reporter burned out in the aftermath. Many politicians and cabinet members had already received a significant volume of mail from those who had been investicated -- some who were charged and some who were not -- in the Foster Parent Scandal. They all knew that something was very fishy. That the Storey-Bishoff acreage outside Martensville was the writer's retreat for Maureen Storey and the quanset hut where the shenanigans supposedly occurred was a workplace and sometimes living quarters for Al Bishoff, and that these two people were experiencing some difficulties which were nobody else's business. They all knew that although the R.C.M.P. had been watching this "place" (or "the devil's church", depending on which version of suborned testimony you wanted to go by) for months and there were no tracks in the snow indicating the kind of traffic the children supposedly alleged! They all knew this!
Did he believe there was a crisis of hurricane or earthquake proportions in Martensville that, as Premier, he was obliged to attend?
What about the debris of wrecked lives of the falsely accused?
Roy Romanow was born, raised, and educated in Saskatoon. He graduated from the University of Saskatchewan where he earned his Arts and Law Degrees. He was first elected to the Saskatchewan Legislature in 1967 and was re-elected in 1971, 1975, 1978, 1986, 1991 and 1995.
Between 1971 and 1982, Roy Romanow served as the Deputy Premier of Saskatchewan in the New Democratic Party government of Allan Blakeney.
Throughout those 11 years, he also served as Saskatchewan's Attorney General, and was responsible for the introduction of many justice system reforms, including: the introduction of a provincial legal aid plan; the creation of the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission; the introduction of a Saskatchewan Human Rights Code; and the creation of the Provincial Ombudsman's Office.
In 1979, Mr. Romanow was appointed Saskatchewan's first Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs. As Premier Blakeney's lead minister in this important field, Roy Romanow was one of the key players in the federal-provincial negotiations which resulted in the Constitutional Accord of November, 1981. In 1984, he co-authored a book on those negotiations, Canada Notwithstanding.
Upon his re-election in October, 1986, Roy Romanow served as Opposition House Leader for the New Democratic Party Caucus. He also served as Caucus spokesperson on federal-provincial affairs and Economic Development and Trade issues.
On November 7, 1987 Mr. Romanow was acclaimed Leader of the Saskatchewan New Democratic Party to succeed Allan Blakeney. On October 21, 1991 Mr. Romanow led the Saskatchewan New Democratic Party to a 55 seat majority government, and assumed the duties of Premier on November 1, 1991.
During its first term, the Romanow government introduced numerous fiscal, economic and social reforms, including a comprehensive Child Action Plan and the creation of a Children's Advocate, legislation to protect victims of domestic violence, the Partnership for Renewal economic strategy, far-reaching health reform based on the "Wellness" model, and the delivery of Saskatchewan's first balanced budget in over 12 years.
Mr. Romanow's New Democratic Party Government was re-elected with a 42 seat majority on June 21, 1995.