This part continues the "article" that started in PDWTS - Part 1.
I suggest that before we turn to what the Court, and the courts below, did or should not have done, with specific reference to the legislation, we should consider a small thought experiment in an imaginary version of Alberta, which I shall call AlberDum. In AlberDum, everything is the same as the real Alberta except that it is, well, imaginary, and that it has at least a few people that, and institutions which, do not exist in the real Alberta; such as, Messrs Heedlough Repte, and Nikle Larph, and their lawyers Howe, Dewey, Cheathum LLP ("HDC").
Repte and Larph were once members of the AlberDum Legislative Assembly (“ADLA”). They are now in private business including, of course, lobbying the gov't and opening doors. They also each have a very nice ski chateau , meaning very expensive and in a very exclusive and very convenient area in Banff.
Also imagine that, early on a Monday morning during skiing season, a very senior partner of HDC frantically calls the chateaus of Messrs Repte and Larph because he needs to tell them that, at 10 a.m. that morning, they and HDC will be "FOIPPed". That is, a functionary of the AlberDum gov't (or one appointed by the AlberDum gov't, even if not "of the gov't" - that may or may not matter here), accompanied by a posse of appropriately dressed minions, is expected to politely attend at the offices of HDC and take away, or at least copy, the HDC files containing the so far secret (except to the people Repte and Larph once paid "hush money" to out of their constituency and legislative assembly office budgets, and of course Wikileaks and Anonymous); information on their affairs with _____, _____, and their last PAs (whom they shared in more ways than one); and how they paid for that and their places in Banff and ____ [another very nice resort in a place south of Alberta with famous hotels, people, and bunnies of various genders] with the funds from their Legislative Assembly office budgets and with the assistance of Mike Duffy. In addition, the files contain information showing that Repte and Larph received "assistance" from the national iteration of their provincial political party which assistance was specifically authorized by the MP from HellerDrum and another AlberDum MP known as Kenneth Janus, apparently Outawais's point person for "things that needed to be done in AlberDum" during the interregnum within which the national party ruled AlberDum's version of Canada, called “Canadeh".
Canadeh is identical to the real Canada except that, in Canadeh: (a) "Toronto" is spelled with only one "T" but oddly enough pronounced, sometimes, with two T's, the presence and positioning of the second depending on the number of Hamiltonians within a 10 mile radius of the speaker; and, (b) the Toronto NHL team is the defending Stanley Cup champion, having won the Stanley Cup in two of the past three years. (I did say this is imaginary, remember.)
By writing "specifically authorized", I meant the circumstance under which it was understood by all involved that it was assistance which the MP from HellerDrum would have approved had he been asked to approve but, for the sake of plausible deniability wasn't asked to approve, if you get my drift. Right?
Imagine, too, that both Repte and Larph are lawyers who were and are entitled to practice law in this imaginary AlberDum. In their case all that means is that they graduated from an approved Canadian law school and did what was required to obtain their licenses to practice law in Alberta, and have paid their fees and formally complied, since then, with all the requirements that had to be complied with in order to maintain their status as persons entitled to practice law in AlberDum. However, neither has, in fact, ever practiced law anywhere in AlberDum, or the rest of the universe, even though both of Repte and Larph are and have been members of "very important" law firms with offices in Edmonton, Calgary, and elsewhere ever since soon after they acquired their tickets. Repte and Larph, you see, are what is colloquially known as "rainmakers". They have contacts. They bring in work to be done by others in their firms. In return for this contribution to the overall welfare of their firms, Repte and Larph are paid handsomely by their firms. Very very very well, too.
Lastly, also imagine that Repte and Larphe, in their capacities as MLAs were, in some now seemingly tragic way, responsible for the shepherding through the AlberDum legislature of the draft legislation which became the enacted FOIPP. Indeed, Repte was the cabinet minister of the ministry responsible for the legislation and Larphe the head of the legislature's committee responsible for the legislation. Larphe was also the "junior" minster in ministry. Both Repte and Larphe were also members of the then AlberDum Premier Minor Premier's inner cabinet. Minor Premier, now deceased, was one of a set of triplets born to an American surrogate mother, a Viet Nam era draft dodger, who lived somewhere in the vicinity of Nelson, B.C. He was the third born and about half the size of his older brother who was first born. The second child was a normal size infant girl. As a result, his parents, Adam and Steve, considered to be the best wits in their circle of ex-Trawna hippies, later Edmonton or Calgary yippies, decided to name the boys Major and Minor and the girl Evening.
I suspect, Cam, that you know where this is going but I'm sure you won't mind if I continue.
Now imagine some of what we might overhear, if we were able to overhear, the conference call amongst Repte, Larphe and the HDC lawyer. I'll skip the obvious bits and summarize dialogue where that's more efficient. Where I've written R/L it is because they've both said about the same thing concurrently. You'll notice Repte and Larphe's eloquence.
I think that's enough for now. Also, this way, I get to use the "cliffhanger" stay tuned approach. Over to you.
to be continued in Purposive Dancing ... Part 5