BC Liberals

Pull down the veil of lies

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Photo amendment courtesy of RS (Twitter Feed)

BC Liberal Debt Promises Collide with the Truth

Because corporate media does not report these figures, it is up to citizens to correct the record. Do so at every opportunity during the election campaign. Blow up the myth that Liberals, while pandering to special interests, are competent financial managers.

Hand out this page, with numbers taken from official Ministry of Finance records:

BC Liberals released the 2017 Budget and Fiscal Plan. The government elected by promising a “DEBT-FREE BC” forecasts total provincial debt will grow $11 billion to a total of $78 billion in next three years.

Under Christy Clark as Premier, provincial debt will have increased $33 billion, which was the total debt accumulated in the 130 years after British Columbia became Canada’s sixth province.

That $78 billion does not include the debt portion of contractual obligations, which total $100 billion but are not mentioned anywhere in 149 pages of the Budget and Fiscal Plan. The PR strategy is to never admit these exist or have impact. This is egregious dishonesty.

Contractual Obligations became a major financial commitment in the mid-2000s when Liberals privatized public services and moved major capital projects off balance sheet. Schools, healthcare facilities, bridges, highways and power installations – although commissioned by and for the public and paid for by the public – were financed by private organizations and therefore excluded from direct provincial debt.

Moving these public facilities off balance sheet provides questionable benefit but it allows politicians to misrepresent the province’s finances.

People in need of social assistance have benefits frozen for a decade. There is no money to help the most vulnerable citizens, but Liberals spend billions to help their friends and financial supporters. It is a greedy, hateful style of government.

12 replies »

  1. Another inspiring article Norm. Provincial politics need accountable people. If you ran for office we’d be in good hands…just thankful for your unrelenting documentation of facts. Christy will run, but she can’t hide.

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  2. I’m always happy to link back to your sight, Norm. Probably 10x per week on average. I can lead people here — but they have to read for themselves. Though many are not so inclined, I’m hoping to find a few each time who’ll be enlightened by what they find here.

    I haven’t yet found a BC Christy supporter who will come on here and say you are wrong, which tells me they don’t have a leg to stand on.

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    • To say these numbers, or the ones concerning BC Hydro, are wrong would require Liberals to disavow their own government’s records. They cannot do that but they do their best to ignore the numbers.

      For example, how can a 149 page “Budget and Fiscal Plan” issued by the Finance Ministry not even mention $100 billion of contractual obligations?

      Why are BC Hydro’s financial commitments found only in footnotes of the once-a-year Auditors’ Report; why are the billions in subsidies to gas producers not reported, except for misleading press releases that talk about a tiny portion of the production credits program as if they involve a few millions, rather than billions.

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  3. So at what point does any of this sorry litany of misdeeds become worthy of the attention of the courts? How does one go about initiating a citizen suit for corruption and malfeasance?

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    • The possibility of citizens raising a court case against political corruption is zero. From West Coast Environmental Law:

      “However, at common law and under the Criminal Code of Canada, the Attorney General has the power to step in and take over the case. And in BC the provincial Attorney General has without exception done so, and then stayed the charges (ending the prosecution).”

      Remember BC Rail? A crooked process, through and through. ended by government paying millions of tax dollars to prevent Gary Farrell-Collins from testifying because they worried he would speak honestly or be accused of perjury. Worst of all, a sympathetic judge allowed the Basi/Virk legal travesty to go unchallenged. Madam Justice Anne W. MacKenzie was subsequently rewarded with promotion to the Court of Appeal.

      It is a reality that, when the government is dishonest, they use their powers to escape liability. However, as long as we have free elections, citizens have a solution at hand. In British Columbia, our chance comes on May 9. Clearly, I recommend each person vote for whichever candidate has the best chance of defeating a BC Liberal.

      In most cases, that will be the NDP, but, if you think it is an independent, go for it. If you think it is a Green Party candidate, beware. Under leadership of Andrew Weaver, that party will support the Liberals if there is no clear majority.

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  4. From Time Colonist Jan. 23:

    Quote:

    “But projects like Site C are pushing up B.C. Hydro’s debt levels, and adding to concerns about the province’s overall “high debt burden” compared to its peers, Moody’s also wrote in its credit opinion.

    B.C. Hydro’s debt has increased from $8.1 billion in 2008 to a projected $18.1 billion last year, and there is a further $20 billion expected in the future for infrastructure projects, a $2-billion annual upgrade program and the Site C dam.

    “The anticipated increase in debt continues to pressure the province’s rating since it raises the contingent liability of British Columbia,” wrote Moody’s, which has expressed similar concerns the past three years.

    Hydro’s debt is ultimately backstopped by taxpayers if the situation worsens, noted Moody’s. Hydro does have the flexibility to raise electricity rates to pay its debts, but its finances are nonetheless “among the weakest of Canadian provincial utilities,” said Moody’s.”

    The article talks about BC Hydro debt but doesn’t mention the $56 billion BC Hydro owes for IPP power.

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  5. Crack in the Platform:

    Christy Clark’s Site C Dam could collapse like the finale at last night’s Academy Awards. Christy’s Academy and crew of bad actors have spent millions on her media campaign as queen of BC.

    She’s been dropping gifts from the sky (like candy) hoping to buy support in the outback.

    A Crack in the Wall:

    John Horgan and Andrew Weaver should demonstrate “LEADERSHIP” and jump all over the “crack in the wall” on the north side of the Peace River. This a catastrophe in the making. They should be posting local photos on Facebook not the photos supplied by BC Hydro.

    They should also examine the credentials and varify documentation of the independent geotechnological experts at Garbage Creek. Perhaps Greens and NDP might engage elementary students in the region to educate their parents on the risks and sign a pledge to vote.

    ***************

    The Site C Dam may bring down the Liberals … Headlines should read:

    Site C Dam Is The Crack In The Liberal Platform
    .
    Christy’s Dam Dream Could Just Be Water Under The Bridge

    Local Lives Matter … No Matter What Christy Thinks

    “UPDATE: Spokesperson Dave Conway says that BC Hydro was first alerted to signs of possible instability in the area of the crack on February 11th, and that the tension crack first appeared on February 18th. Conway says that the crack, which is located upstream of the future site of the dam near Garbage Creek, is not spreading. The project’s independent engineer and technical experts are still assessing the tension crack.”

    https://energeticcity.ca/2017/02/400-metre-tension-crack-forms-riverbank-site-c-haul-road/
    http://www.dawsoncreekmirror.ca/regional-news/site-c/tension-crack-forms-along-site-c-dam-haul-road-1.10364812

    Could Christy’s Hydro “spin” alter the Earth’s rotatation?

    HOW INFAMOUS HYDROELECTRIC DAM CHANGED EARTH’S ROTATION
    … “encountered heavy inspection from both environmental activists like and scientists. Many consider that the dam will eventually result in disaster. Some worries include the dam trapping pollution, producing earthquakes and mudslides, displacing citizens and … people have already been enforced to relocate, and terminating historical locations – alongside with the habitats of rare animals. The government finally approved that the project was ill conceived – after years of labelling the dam one of the most remarkable pieces of engineering in Chinese history – but the loss is already done.”

    http://www.physics-astronomy.com/2014/05/how-infamous-hydroelectric-dam-changed.html#.WLQ_QJH9ehA

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Art. Good to know the 33 layoffs were NOT a result of the tension crack, but because the contractor had figgered how to increase payloads by side boarding the trucks. After 19 months of hauling! Gives one a heck of a lot of confidence. That practice was common knowledge in the 60’s when the first dam was built. (Albeit by another contractor)
      And I’m relieved to hear that Energy Minister Bill Bennett “was not concerned about geotechnical issues”. Thank goodness! He’s got his hands full being concerned about energy issues.
      I hope the damn thing slides into the reservoir when the spring runoff fills the cracks and lubricates the slip line.
      ‘They’ must be relieved that this crack issue arose to justify the almost half billion dollars they set aside to deal with ‘geotechnical issues’.

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