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Gather round, children

So it turns out the WCB hostage-taker was a really "nice guy", according to the people he lived with, but he had this habit of blaming other people for all his problems. "[I] had to resort to street drugs." Sure you did, buddy: everybody who has a bum knee does that, right? If there is one life lesson I would choose to stress to young acquaintances, it might be this: you will meet many people who fit this description, and none of them are actually "nice guys." Their list of "I had to"s only gets bigger and bigger. My advice: get the had-tas out of your head and your life.

The "nice guy" at the centre of this story is, puzzlingly, also described as "Always high-strung and occasionally volatile", which is journalism code for what would otherwise be described as "a complete prick". Why the contradiction? I'm guessing that some of his acquaintances may have made comments along the lines of "Well, he was always real nice to me, but if I had to bet on it I would probably guess he wasn't so nice to his ex-wife or his caseworkers." When somebody's got a case of the had-tas, you stay in their good books until the second you don't, and suddenly you've got a problem.

Is sympathy advisable? Mr. Clayton was treated sympathetically by the cops before, when he tied up downtown traffic for much of a day with a suicide threat; he has apparently been handled sympathetically enough by the government to qualify for subsidized housing with assisted-living caregivers. Thank God no innocent people are dead today because the sympathy that the less fortunate I-cans of this world deserve was spent on a had-ta.


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Comments (18)


...this habit of blaming other people for all his problems.

Get to know anyone with anger issues and a bad case of shitty life syndrome and you'll more than likely find they suffer from this same habit.

Sure. Chicken & egg, right? I don't suppose you just mean really bad luck when you say "shitty life syndrome".


To the contrary.


I worked at a finance company, where I dealt with both "shitty life syndrome" sufferers (nice description) and people with really bad luck. Although there is some overlap, they are not synonymous.

I am familiar with the stress and tension that sort of threat creates in the work environment (floor to ceiling bullet-proof wall/window in the lobby, amongst other security measures). I've dealt with people who would have done harm to me if they would have been organized enough to figure out who/where I was.

This brings back a lot of memories. Like the woman who put her 4-year-old on the phone, to relay the message that Mommy was going to drive them across the country to my office, so she could kill herself in the parking lot and it would be my fault. Moms did not follow through, but that poor kid.


Really Bad Luck: Hurt back in the shop, can't work as an HD mechanic any more. Calls bank. Pursues refinancing to fit new budget. Quits smoking and avoids the casino for a few months while he gets his new lifestyle in check. Gets tight for a while, may lose a vehicle or ATV to repossession. Eventually gets back on his feet.

Shitty Life Syndrome: was already dodging creditors for months when his back was injured drunkenly ramming his truck into his ex-common-law's hair salon. Blames the cops for tasering him during arrest, obviously can't work in jail. Oh, and now the banks are out to get him because he can't get a loan for a new truck when he gets out.


Well, lord knows I try to bear the spawn of all the crack addicts I date too. Who wouldn't, really?

Looks like Good Choices have not just left the building, but burned the crops and salted the earth on the way out of town.

Cf. Schoenborn, Mrs. Allan.


Good point. Every time I accidentally hear about that horror show, my skin crawls.

It looks like the original theory that he killed his kids to get back at her seems to be bearing out, as he didn't plead guilty, but is recounting every detail in court so she has to live through it again.

So vile.

Crid [CridComment @ gmail]:

Re: your earlier tweet, this is the best thing ever written about Springsteen. (Includes bodily fluids!)


What burns me about this stuff is that I'll be assumed to be the same if I trash my back.

Or maybe not. A story comes to mind, a good friend actually.

He was seriously hurt in a work accident. Lost arm/leg/toes/fingers/much skin. 6 months to a year before they were sure he would survive. (helps to have all the boxes ticked, no question, when dealing with bureaucracies) Oddly enough, when it came time to figure out his benefits, the WCB people from auditors to therapists to whoever seemed to almost bend the rules in his favor because he was such a nice guy. Showed appreciation for what people did, made their day brighter. He would wear out a prosthetic leg every six months or so, no problem, come get another one. Everybody liked him, and really stretched for him. Made them remember why they got into the helping people business.

Bad attitudes cost.

Must adjust mine.



He "had to resort to street drugs"? When did CRACK become a pain killer? That's like turning to speed to help you sleep, or motivating yourself to go get off the couch by taking bong hits.

Well, I don't agree with taking hostages but if the Workers Compensation Board in Alberta is anything like the crooked outfit in British Columbia, the guy probably had justifiable cause to take up arms.

Some of these Compensation Board people are complete pr--cks.

I was screwed around by a group of judges in BC so, being a patient man, I bided my time, collected information on them, and started a lawsuit that exposed their criminality, as we moved the lawsuit forward seven of the pr--cks suddenly started dropping dead.

Seven dead judges linked to one lawsuit.

The media won't touch the Story but you can read about it at the WarerWarCrimes web site

Read about the Story "Caught In the Crossfire" at

We think some of the judges were murdered in order to silence them.

The Governments of Canada and British Colubmia are covering up something very very big.


"The Governments of Canada and British Colubmia [sic] are covering up something very very big."

Right. And there's just gotta be a connection to 9/11!

The WCB hostage-taking occurred in Edmonton about the same time as Bush visited the place.

Coincidence? I think not.

We're through the looking glass here, people.


Speaking of high-strung self-righteous cranks with a victim complex, that waterwarcrimes site delivers. I particularly like the bios.

Atomic Walrus:

Great little follow-up piece in the Post this morning: it seems that the hostage taker called a media outlet from custody, and complained about how badly he's being treated. After all, he treated everybody "with the utmost of respect" while holding them hostage with a rifle...


Atomic Walrus, that is indeed a gem.

"This is not fair for anybody out there to get treated like [this]," he said, sobbing.

This brightened my morning. Thanks, Mr. VNMWPANHOF!


"Thank God no innocent people are dead today because the sympathy that the less fortunate I-cans of this world deserve was spent on a had-ta." -- quote of the year. Should be hung in every courtroom in our land.


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