Selective Memory

If it were not for the fact that $100 million went missing during what has now come to be known as AdScam, the testimony provided at the Gomery Inquiry would be hillarious. Take, oh I don't know, Jacques Corriveau for instance. Now that the ridiculous publication ban has been lifted I'm allowed to repeat the testimony of Jean Brault. During his time on the hotseat, Mr.Brault, former head of Groupaction Marketing (one of the Quebec ad firms implicated in the scandal) testified that Mr.Corriveau, former head of Pluridesign Canada Inc and long time Liberal fundraiser, was one of 3 high profile Liberals he met in the hopes that they could open doors for him and his firm. He stated that all 3 strongly urged him to contribute funds to the Liberal Party which he did. He added that he hid much of the donations in direct violation of the law.
"It cost a lot, meeting them," Mr. Brault has testified.

What was Jacques Corriveau's response to this? When asked if he pressured Mr.Brault to support the party he said "no". In fact, he said,
"I had no relations with Mr. Brault,"

Remember that quote. Moving forward, Mr.Corriveau denied allegations he pressured Mr.Brault to hire Liberal Party official Serge Gosselin as a phony employee as a way to subsidize work done for the party as this person would have no duties or responsibilities. However he did admit that he recommend Mr. Brault hire Maria Chretien, Jean Chretien's niece, because she needed the work. Didn't he just say earlier that he had no relations with Mr. Brault. Besides, according to testimony given by Ms.Chretien, she applied for the job without going through Mr.Corriveau.

After that he seemed to develop a case of selective memory.
He knew that the federal government was keen to spend money in Quebec after the close referendum in 1995, he said, making him privy to an initiative that even cabinet ministers later claimed ignorance of. But he could not say specifically how he learned that the federal spigot was being opened.

"I have to tell you, Mr. Commissioner, as a volunteer within the Liberal Party of Canada, I was involved in a very political milieu and an advertising environment," he told Judge Gomery before his explanation trailed off.

"... to say exactly when it happened, no, it was too far away and too close, if you will, to be able to identify who really made me aware of it. No, I'm sorry, I can't answer that."

How convenient. He made nearly $8 million but can't recall the details. He blamed the memory lapses on age, medication and of all things anesthesia from a recent operation. When asked about an invoice he submitted for work done on a non-existent Olympic stadium in Chicoutimi he replied that it was a misprint.
"There was an important misprint," he told the inquiry. "It should have been ... the Olympic stadium in Montreal."

Uh huh. When he was asked why all of his invoices were camouflaged by calling them for 'professional services rendered' he had no answer. He also downplayed his friendship with former PM Jean Chretien despite being shown telephone logs revealing dozens of calls between them. With respect to his selective memory regarding past meetings with various other figures implicated in the scandal he said he couldn't recall those meetings because he throws his agenda book out each month.

To get a handle on who the key players are check here.

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(Cross-posted to Rite Turn Only)

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