• authored by remote viewer
  • published Fri, Apr 8, 2005

The Day They Almost Blew Up Jean Chretien

The Day They Almost Blew Up Jean Chretien

When we peek behind institutional shrouds, truth is often stranger than fiction. Scratch the surface of the polished "professional" images of our institutional leaders and you'll see that how they really are bears little resemblance to the spin-doctored persona they trot out for our benefit. The secret lives of big shots can be really fascinating. Behind the santimonious professionalism lurk sleazy guys motivated by self-interest who, when the curtains are drawn, spend their time lolling around with other sleazy guys.

This has been a banner week for shroud-ripping and sleazeball-gazing. First there were those startling revelations on an American blog about the secret lives of Liberal Party hacks and ad agency big shots in the adscam scandal. Those were subject to a publication ban at first but now that the word is out on the street, they aren't anymore.

Discussion in our forum about the publication ban and the ease with which the "banned" information can be located, led to yet another explosive revelation about some very strange bed mates: Former Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chretien (a major player in adscam) and Ron Kelly, the former priest 'n pedophile who became a real estate mogul thanks to the generous financial backing of the UFCW's CCWIPP pension plan.

The post, by forum contributor ISDU Potentate, is so sensational and provides such food for thought that we're reprinting it here in its entirety:

This is a great thread to tell a Liberal-god/Ron Kelly connection story. Some MfDers have heard it. We'll let the rest in on it now.

When Ron Kelly reopened the Triumph, it was as the 'Howard Johnson' hotel. Not the most upscale brand name. Now we used to get some interesting B-character types in the place. Potentate's most memorable...

a) a long line of hockey players that would come in for signings (Maurice Richard is a good example)

b) Ivana Trump and her then husband Mazzuchelli were regulars because of a 'home-shopping-network' studio that was in the area. The Potentate once showered the Mazz with a bottle of red wine. He and his suit weren't too pleased.

c) The Potentate was once locked in a room with all members of the Village People in half-costume. Never have dealt with that yet. This is a start.

That leads to our greatest guest EVER...


This is going back to the mid-90s. Ron Kelly's buddy, Jean, and some fellow Liberals were 'convinced' to come to the hotel (the Howard Johnson at 2737 Keele St. in Toronto which was at the time owned by Kelly's company Kelloryn). Apparently the two were good friends. Would you stay at a HoJo instead of the Four Seasons for an enemy? Kelly had the "Prime Minister's Suite" put together on the 10th floor in expectation of this mega-star's arrival.

Just before the PM's arrival, the Potentate was instructed to deliver a giant basket up to the room for Shawinigan Boy Chretien. As he exited the 10th floor, two dogs the size of horses sniffed him and the package. RCMP officers did a background check on who made the basket and on whether the Potentate had washed his hands after his last piss.

Then Chretien showed up. At some point in the evening a meal was ordered. Room service was excited and prepared four hot dishes for him. These took up four levels in a HotBox (the metal box under a room service cart). Everything was great until the a**hole of a manager decided that he would deliver the food to our guest. F**k the employees. So after an argument, the staff decided not to help him...

Our manager looked at the metal hotbox and thought that he needed to keep the food warm. So instead of putting one sterno (the flaming can) into the box, he put... four. These sternos have to be extinguished upon arrival in the room, meaning the plates sit there with flame for about 5 minutes and then the hot metal takes over. But Chretien's people wanted him to leave the table outside the door. Which he did...

Estimates have the plates and box heating for 20 minutes inside Chretien's suite before they exploded and the table cloth caught fire, charred and set off the fire alarm. The table was kicked into the hallway and all hell broke loose.

Our shadier-than-Osama-bin-Laden manager was taken away for questioning, much to the delight of staff. The metal box came back down. It must have been bright red at some point. The super-thick plastic handle above it was melted flat.

Popular Toronto morning radio hosts Jesse and Gene tried calling the hotel for more info, but the story was "silenced". Staff were told not to talk about it. It happened though.

Let it be known, that we almost had Chretien! Vive la resistance!

This entertaining story raises a couple of serious issues: What do you suppose the Prime Minister of Canada (which Chretien was at the time) was doing holed up in a two star hotel (the one that is the focus of our Mondo Condo series) in an unremarkable Toronto suburb, the guest of the former Father Kelly? Is it possible that Chretien or his high-ranking hacks are mixed up in the tangled webs of big shots behind the UFCW's troubled pension plan? Tell us again how Cliff Evans (extra large UFCW big shot and Chairman of the CCWIPP Investment Committee) got appointed to the member of the International Trade Advisory Committee (by the Minister of International Trade)? Could this be the leak that blows the lid off?

Apart from the potential to expose institutional secrets, revelations by working people of the backroom antics of the high and mighty may be very useful in depriving the mighty of their power (much of which comes from their ability to roll around in the dirt when the shades are drawn). We see and hear a lot of things in the course of doing our jobs - whether in the boardroom or the hotel suite. We're told never to tell because it will hurt the boys who are doing the backroom boogie. Why should we care? What would happen if we collectively began spilling the beans? In the least, there would be a lot of interesting news. But more likely, the mighty would fall in large numbers.

  • posted by Elise Grace
  • Fri, Apr 8, 2005 6:36pm

This is a great story. I have been given some space on a local forum called, "The Other View from Labour." I added this story and others from MfD. Please check it out and add your two bits. Feel free to add more articles and information. It is a new forum and could use some spice.

Click here and join in on the debate. This is small town BC - dependant on the forest industry. I believe, at one time, this town had the highest income per capita in all of Canada. Now, many people are barely surviving.

PS I am doing the best I can to rebel and be a part of the e_volution

  • posted by yankeebythewater
  • Fri, Apr 8, 2005 7:24pm


posted by Susan R This is small town BC - dependant on the forest industry. I believe, at one time, this town had the highest income per capita in all of Canada. Now, many people are barely surviving.

Welcome, to the new B.C. order.

Yep, you had the corporations behind your town. Corporations have pulled out, sorry to say, no hope. You best get out while you can.

As I see it, in British Columbia - you have your northern - to whom no one gives a damn about ~ interior - sure lets give a damn about them..~ and your lower drainland folks, who think life is perfect.

  • posted by Elise Grace
  • Fri, Apr 8, 2005 8:06pm

I know you are right - it has been a tough go. I am one of those island people - a little out of the loop. Funny thing, I was just thinking today about the future of this place. In June, Weyerhaeuser leaves town. They were here for five years. Before this multi-national corporation moved in, we were MacMillan Bloedel Ltd. Now our new owner is Brascan - a non-forestry entity. I believe Brascan is more into property investments.

What happened in small town, forestry-dependant USA when the forest industry took a beating? I remember similar issues occuring down south. Did communities just disappear? Were any able to rebuild? Please fill in the blanks. Your history is our future.

  • posted by hellraiser
  • Sat, Apr 9, 2005 1:12am

I'm humbled Susan. The compliments and thread links overwhelmed me!

But most importantly... that kitty-cat image. I need the original!! I'm so entranced by it.

I want that cat.

PS. Noticed that RV edited my John to Jean. Let it be known that I was too tired to translate at the time.

  • posted by hellraiser
  • Sat, Apr 9, 2005 1:22pm

Ok guys, I went and put my money where my mouth is. I did an archive search at the Toronto Star and they did actually report the incident! Talk about 'downplaying' it. It's a fucking fire alarm(!) and the PRIME MINISTER OF CANADA potentially harmed.


The Toronto Star
NEWS, Saturday, February 4, 1995, p. A12
Chretien in hotel hot seat as dinner tray catches fire
Prime Minister Jean Chretien is used to being on the hot seat, but he wasn't expecting the grilling he got in his hotel room.
He had hoped, aides said, to spend a quiet evening alone Thursday after the first day of a national Liberal caucus meeting at the Triumph Howard Johnson Plaza hotel in North York.
He ordered spare ribs and a glass of milk from room service. The food arrived on a push cart in a pan that had a warmer underneath with an open flame.
Chretien settled down in front of the TV and started on his meal "when all of a sudden the smoke alarm went off," said an official with the Prime Minister's Office.
He couldn't see why at first, "but then he noticed his knees were getting warm" and realized the tablecloth was on fire, the official said.
He quickly opened his door and pushed the cart into the hallway, where RCMP security guards attempted to shut off the warmer with the Prime Minister's steak knife.
Figuring they had the situation under control, Chretien returned to his room to finish his ribs - "with a butter knife."
No one was injured, the fire was extinguished and Chretien laughed off the incident, the official said.
But he couldn't resist sending a note to hotel staff. "Thanks for the hot meal," he wrote.
Edition: SA2
Length: Short, 189 words
Copyright © 1995 Toronto Star, All Rights Reserved.
Doc. : news•19950204•TS•05567

The story is hilarious in that nobody eats at the room service cart when you have a 10 foot royalty table to eat on. "My knees were getting warm" sounds like he's eating a TV dinner in a tiny apartment! And no way you "shut off" a sterno (4 actually) with a steak knife. It's canned fuel gel. We would knife/mix it to keep it going the next time. And don't forget he first pulled his extremely hot plates out himself and left the fire raging inside. None of it makes sense. I keep editing in more... each line is bullshit. His first day there and he'll spend it alone. This wasn't 11PM. A glass of milk? I can't recall but this is such cheesy spin.

Who actually buys this type of reporting?? Well, actually I just did... damn.

PS. There are more articles about the convention that took place that week. Don't want to overwhelm ya. We had Paul Martin and all the big boys there.

  • posted by siggy
  • Sun, Apr 10, 2005 6:17pm

You just have all the fun Pot.

"Well my friends, it has been a hell of a ride. I want to tank tonight the people of of da travel lodge who have shown der fire fighting skills. Wid out dem, I would not be here tonight. Vive le Ca na da!"

  • posted by hellraiser
  • Mon, Apr 11, 2005 5:14pm


posted by siggy:
You just have all the fun Pot.

Ah sig, you have to find the entertainment in it. Or just create it if it's boring.

I'm still pissed at that Toronto Star fluff reporting. Same person probably did Joe Ieradi's spin. This article might have indirectly cost room service employees across the city a lot of business. 'The Corporation' calls that externality! It makes it sound like tablecloths go up in flames pretty easily... like room service comes with a 'use at your own risk' tag attached. Who knows how many people got scared away from the service.

Finding this article pissed me off for another reason. I had bought a bundle and was searching for a 'filler' article. Then I saw this one...


July 3, 1993
Workers' pension fund backs hotel chain employer
Length : Short ( 246 words )
This article was published in a newspaper, but is subject to restrictions and therefore cannot be displayed.

Restrictions?? What the fuck?? I wanna buy this shit. I'm willing to pay. How many other articles are restricted or completely hidden from the public? The ones that are complete bullshit, I can buy. The ones that might have some truth to them, um... sorry... fuck off. Sort of what they did on the site.

Thankfully a very nice MfDer linked me to this page... the article is 1/4 of the way down.

So I read that restricted shit for free. TorStar can take that link above and shove it up their legal department's ass. Then they can pull it out and shove it up the UFCW's ass.

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