When Gordon Campbell was Premier, advantaging insiders and friends became the BC Government’s raison d’etre. Liberals were damn good at it too.
When that sated Premier moved on, he left behind a gang worthy of a Jimmy Breslin novel. If they could shoot straight, it would be right into their own feet. As a result, most BC Liberals are limping toward retirement seven months from now.
This week, Christy Clark found an audience in Calgary at a place where erstwhile chief of staff Ken Boessenkool once laid hands. She also collected tributes for the BC Liberals from gas producers keen to show appreciation for reduced royalties and tax paid production subsidies. Beyond that and Premier Redford’s autograph on her yearbook, Clark gained nothing.
Voters at home were unimpressed. Even Bill Good complained about the amateur-hour planning. Alberta’s political watchers laughed, particularly at her silliness that, thanks to LNG, BC will soon be Canada’s energy giant. According to Columnist Don Braid:
She is, by a wide measure, the most inconsistent, self-contradictory and desperate politician in Canada.
Stirred by work of eastern colleagues, Vaughn Palmer noticed that something is amiss in Clark counting LNG dollars by the trillions. Referring to the first of the proposed LNG plants, Palmer wrote:
…a trio of companies headed by Houston-based Apache Corp, have been unable to persuade buyers in Asia to sign a long-term contract at a price high enough to offset the multibillion-dollar risk of construction.
The Vancouver Sun columnist could have written that piece months ago had he read Our pending meltdown or Reinventing the wheel, timidly published here in June. I made the point that the best markets for BC gas are domestic markets. Like automobiles, trucks and marine services. BC Ferries, are you paying attention?
Assumptions that Asian markets are both lucrative and accessible are judgement errors of captive Liberal politicians. Captives of an industry that aims to have taxpayers pay for infrastructure, including ports and power, and absorb most of the financial risks.
Palmer writes about Australians being ahead of Canada in supplying Asian energy needs. Soon, Canada will stand behind Russia and China itself. Less than a year ago, Reuters reported:
China is set for a shale gas revolution which will surpass that seen in the United States, the chairman of Sinopec, the country’s second-largest oil company, said a day after Reuters revealed Royal Dutch Shell Plc had begun shale gas production in China.
Fellow citizens, what do you think about an energy policy managed by the most inconsistent, self-contradictory and desperate politician in Canada?