Vision insider starts hiring fed election staff

Post by Mike Klassen in


bob penner
Stratcom's Bob Penner from 2008

For those of us who want to know who's who in the zoo known as B.C. politics, it's always interesting to watch federal election time. Only then can you really see where the lines are within traditional coalitions that make up provincial – and Vancouver – parties. For example, someone might be a BC Liberal, yet might be working on the campaign of a Conservative candidate; a COPE supporter might be a Green Party volunteer, and so on.

So this Craigslist ad for a call centre worker by Vision Vancouver insiders Stratcom (Strategic Communications) owned by Bob Penner, will be an interesting indicator of federal loyalties. Penner's group has many eco-oriented clientele as well as working for many labour unions. Their website clearly indicates that Stratcom works with the NDP and Vision Vancouver, which suggests a possible sharing of voter ID lists and operational support between the two left wing organizations.

While Stratcom will likely be on the NDP's payroll again during this federal election, it wouldn't be altogether surprising if they were doing work with the federal Liberal Party. Several key Vision operatives including Brad Zubyk, as well as Don Millar and Mike Wilson of FD Element are also key players in the Liberal's operation in B.C.

Think that there isn't significant strategic collaboration between labour unions and their political allies? For an amazing insight into how trade unions and the NDP collaborate, read this Vaughn Palmer story on a testimonial by Zubyk.

Our longtime readers may also recall that Vision Vancouver created a so-called "negative option billing" membership form whereby several people's personal information was shared with other "progressive organizations" (read: political parties). decided to take up the matter with the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of BC (OIPC). In the end Vision ended up trying to dupe the OIPC by doing a switcheroo on the form.

Despite the fact that Stratcom thought it was okay to ask people their sexual preferences during a West End push poll conducted on behalf of the developer Westbank, it's unlikely that the callers the pollster is hiring will be asking voters who they sleep with this time.

Here's the ad posted on Craigslist:

Election Call Centre Work

Date: 2011-03-22, 5:42PM

Strategic Communications, Inc. seeks callers to conduct brief surveys by phone for interesting political organization. Ability to speak/read French is an asset. Hourly wage guaranteed plus bonuses. Flexible scheduling and progressive workplace.

• 40 hours per week available, especially weekends
• prefer people who can work at least 20 hours a week
• Evenings, Weekends and Weekdays available

email cover letter and resume to:

or leave a message at 604.681.3030 ext. 1001

  • Location: Vancouver-Kitsilano/Fairview
  • Compensation: $10.38/hour + $1.50 shift differential for all calling time
  • Principals only. Recruiters, please don't contact this job poster.
  • Phone calls about this job are ok.
  • Please do not contact job poster about other services, products or commercial interests.

Original URL:

- post by Mike. Follow @MikeKlassen and @CityCaucus on Twitter.


"While Stratcom will likely be on the NDP's payroll again during this federal election, it wouldn't be altogether surprising if they were doing work with the federal Liberal Party."

Of course this would not be surprising - this election is about making a choice between a Conservative majority and a Liberal/NDP coalition government. There is no other rational explanation for why the opposition pulled the trigger now other than they fear Harper would be into majority territory if they waited. Another minority win for the Conservatives will see the Liberals and NDP come together, propped up by the Bloc who no doubt will extract more special treatment for Quebec.

So all you Liberal voters better study the NDP platform before you cast your ballot. A "Prime Minister" Ignatieff is bad enough but a government with Jack Layton pulling the strings would be a disaster for Canada.

Nice to see a Conservative on this board - 3 Party officials under indicement - another been investigated for fraud - a cabinet minister lying to Parliament and not being fired - welcome to the open and transparent government promised by Mr Harper - if they can do that and add more than $100 Billion to the National Debt with a minority just imagine how much better we will be when the Cons have a majority.

Royal Bank has a record 1.3 Billion profit last quarter yet they need a tax break yet all they can offer Seniors is a few pennies as a thanks for building this country.

Under that awkful socialist Liberal regime Canada really suffered on the world financial stage - lowest debt to GDP in the Group of Seven.

Remember when Brian Mulroney was elected he was going to pay down the debt - well he doubled it in 8 short years and in the five years under Harper all of the pay down of the previous decade has been reincurred.

You can paint the Liberals any way you want Bill but they managed the economy a heck of a lot better than either Mulroney or Harper.

You have a short and selective memory Politics101. Remember Adscam and the Gomery inquiry? With the Conservatives there is a disagreement with Elections Canada about the spending of money that the party raised legally.

Yes, the Liberals did a good job in reducing the deficit albeit on the backs of the Provinces as well as neglecting the military. You seem to forget how during the financial crisis Harper was criticized for not spending enough to stimulate the economy. You can't have it both ways. You didn't refer to the Trudeau era. Oversight?

The whole objective of lowering taxes is to generate more tax revenue which is only going to happen if companies generate greater profits. Or are profitable companies a bad thing?

And you have completely ignored the NDP and Bloc factors in a coalition government. Who do you think is going to come out on top in any manoeuvering between Ignatieff and Layton? Ignatieff may be brilliant in an academic environment but Jack has the political smarts.

Thanks Bill for suggesting that I might be a Liberal. I was a member of that party until the early 80`s - I have also voted Progressive Conservative and NDP federally over the years - haven`t belong to a federal party in more than 25 years.

Probably best that we spare this thread a lot of drift and agree to disagree.

Check out!

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