BC Green Party

The people spoke; go Ms. Clark, go

clarkFollowing British Columbia’s May 9 general election, a political bloc with the majority of votes and a majority of elected members became ready to form government. But, the defeated Premier declines to resign, as she should, and as she must.

By hanging on after defeat, Christy Clark disrespects voters and disregards the parliamentary system that governs us.

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People of this province voted for change but Christy Clark wants more of the same. In staying on as Premier, Clark claims to be following advice of constitutional experts but, she names not one. Meanwhile, experts are clear that another course is appropriate.

SFU political scientist Andrew Heard specializes in “the rules and institutions of government.” Before Canada’s 2015 federal election, Professor Heard discussed what must happen when no single party wins a majority of seats:

Let’s say a party that was in second place had an agreement with a party in third or fourth place. Together they had the majority of seats — that to me, fulfills the main criteria for our system of government: if you have a majority, then you have the authority to govern. A leader who finishes first, who clearly does not have the support of the majority … to me, doesn’t have an automatic right.

Under the Westminster system, operations of parliament are largely governed by conventions but these impose clear cut obligations on political actors. In 2010, Britain’s new Conservative Prime Minister, with participation of the previous Labour government, select committees and constitutional experts, developed an authoritative guide to parliamentary procedures. It is relevant to Canadian parliaments.

The Cabinet Manual, A guide to laws, conventions and rules on the operation of government (United Kingdom, 2011):

2.09 … In modern times the convention has been that the Sovereign should not be drawn into party politics, and if there is doubt it is the responsibility of those involved in the political process, and in particular the parties represented in Parliament, to seek to determine and communicate clearly to the Sovereign who is best placed to be able to command the confidence of the House of Commons. As the Crown’s principal adviser this responsibility falls especially on the incumbent Prime Minister, who at the time of his or her resignation may also be asked by the Sovereign for a recommendation on who can best command the confidence of the House of Commons in his or her place.

2.19 …The Prime Minister is expected to resign where it is clear that he or she does not have the confidence of the House of Commons and that an alternative government does have the confidence.

We know one reason that Liberals cling to office. It’s highly profitable for the party.

Vancouver Sun journalist Daphne Bramham reported that nearly $1 million in contributions were deposited into the B.C. Liberal party’s bank account just three days after the May 9 election. Bob Mackin of theBreaker.news calculated that Liberals raised $21.3 million in less than 17 months after January 2016.

But, what the Liberal Party deposits in the “wild west” of political fundraising is small change compared to what their corporate sponsors gain. Reminding us of the “hosing” taxpayers took on Coquitlam land sales, future NDP cabinet minister David Eby noted that a secret untendered sale of False Creek development land to big BC Liberal donors is underway.

Each month of continued Liberal rule ensures that the growing list of private power producers banks $120 million for electricity that must be resold by BC Hydro at a fraction of cost, mining companies are excused from paying millions for power consumed and natural gas producers gain $75 million in additional subsidies. In addition, Rich Coleman’s friends continue to enjoy public assistance to build luxury housing and the Liberal patronage network stays in place, collecting rewards for imposing the party’s political will.

Kinder Morgan’s plans to move uncleanable bitumen through waters of Burrard Inlet and the Salish Sea remain unchallenged and the independent review of Site C is unstarted.

On the other hand, bridge tolls continue unchanged and moves toward a $15 minimum wage and $10 a day childcare are postponed. Also deferred are improvements in social welfare benefits for the province’s neediest citizens and urgently needed changes to the Ministry of Children and Family Development are ignored. A lower mainland transportation strategy that respects regional priorities is delayed and further millions are wasted on preparing the Massey Tunnel replacement bridge.

These items were among the issues in our recent election. John Horgan’s NDP and Andrew Weaver’s Greens shared common approaches on most subjects while Liberals held opposite positions.

Forty-two percent more votes were marked for the two main opposition parties on May 9 than for the Liberalsclear evidence that BC citizens want a new direction by government. That will come under Premier Horgan but delay is inexcusable.

The latest of Martyn Brown’s insightful pieces in the Georgia Straight offered Andrew Weaver’s explanation of why the NDP/Green alliance was formed:

…With the B.C. NDP, I find a partner that will actually position British Columbia in the new economy, create distributed jobs, from north to south and east to west, in a bottom-up fashion, putting people first. And that, ultimately, in the framework of climate leadership brought the B.C. Greens here today, to work with the B.C. NDP…

Clark and her colleagues ignore political reality and by frustrating the will of citizens, they put at risk the continued viability of the Liberal Party in BC. Justin Trudeau and his 17 British Columbia MPs ought to take note.

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14 replies »

  1. Clark is in this for what will benefit her the most- and all we need to do is look around at the big money flowing into reform-alliance-socred coffers and continued shady deals and tax payer robbery. I will not be at all surprised if she comes out of this holding on to her job. Delays are the age-old tactic to get what you want, and indeed BC’s most notorious bully gets what she wants. Meanwhile, most of us just want her to go away.

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    • Queen Caroline, wife to George IV who deserved each other, was greatly disliked by Londoners who used to chant this little ditty, so apropos to Queen Christy, don’t you think?

      “Dear lady, we do thee implore,
      To go away and sin mo more.
      But if that effort prove too great,
      To go away at any rate.”

      The alternative might be to take up a collection and buy her an owl and a beautiful pea green boat …

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  2. And where is the Lt. Gov. and her bevy of Constitutional advisors on this whole issue? I would have thought by now that the Lt. Cov. office whould have come out with a statement outlining their thoughts. The silence is deafening. Is the Lt. Gov. too in bed with the Liberals? Oh please, don’t tell me it’s so.

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    • The Westminster convention is for the Queen’s representative to be uninvolved. Uncertainty should be resolved by politicians although it is the primary responsibility of the first minister, Premier Clark in this case.

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      • Hmmmm….if the Queen’s representative is to be uninvolved, one wonders then why Clark is holding out at the LG’s Government House daily, with much coming and going of suits with briefcases. Hardly setting the scene for impartiality.

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  3. Thanks Norm for your article today. You are completely correct.

    I have constantly stated that the BC Liberals have been the most corrupt government in the history of this country. Justin Trudeau appears to be working hard to take second place.

    Just look at what Christy and her cronies did to myself and my family. See the attached story of the attack on the English Family by the The BC Liberals, which used two Crown Corporations against us to rob and destroy our family business and home of 30 years: BC Hydro and BC Investment Management Corporation (BCIMC, who now owns our property).

    We are fighting both of them in court and are seeking the return of our property and just compensation for our losses. Christy has had her high paid government lawyers attempt to throw out our case out without any hearing on the evidence three times now since February. Each time no Judge in BC would consent to hear her case.

    Mr. Justice Barrow, in Kelowna, said he had read the Blog on our case and he refused to dismiss our claim against the government and wished us well.

    We are now hopeful that Premier Horgan and Green Party Leader, Andrew Weaver (who I personally met with and discussed our case extensively) will enter into negotiations with us for the return of our property and for compensation.

    The reign of theft and terror under Campbell/Clark is finally at an end.

    Thanks so much to courageous journalists such as yourself, Rafe Mair, De Smog, and many others for your fight against the most damaging and corrupt government imaginable.

    Rafe and Damien Gillis did an amazing video about how the Liberals were working with a big “private equity company” to take down BC Hydro (CAI and BCIMC) which is an extremely disturbing wake up call showing what the real BC Liberal agenda was.

    But this is just the tip of the iceberg of BC Liberal corruption in this province.

    BCIMC and CAI Private Equity Partners of New York were the prime actors in the criminal imposition of smart meters upon the people of BC with Tracey McVicar (Manager and Director of CAI in Vancouver) also being on the Board of BC Hydro at the same time, in a conflict of interest. BCIMC and CAI were also partners in the deal and they both made hundreds of millions poisoning BC power consumers with “dirty power”.

    This is the same criminal gang involved in the illegal taking of millions of acres of publicly owned lands on Vancouver Island from the people of BC and the First Nations firstly by Timberwest and then by the ultimate recipient of this massive “criminally laundered land theft”, BCIMC, in what was the crime of the century here in BC.

    Likewise, with the iPP scandal, Site C, Fracking, Pacific Rim Resort, and the smart meters…

    I also have insider information on the billions in unpaid fracking gas licence revenues in Rich Coleman’s ministry from a long time senior employee who took early retirement as she could not endure the corruption and coke parties that she witnessed there.

    BCIMC has become a corrupt monstrosity and must be shut down and the pensions of BC government workers must be returned to management by the provincial government with proper oversight and safeguards.

    These frauds and thefts from the BC public similar to the IPP scandal which you have so brilliantly exposed must be reversed and the proceeds and property returned to the rightful owners and the parties responsible should be facing corruption charges.

    The smart meters must be removed as Saskatchewan just did and the monies made by CAI and BCIMC must be returned to the people of BC.

    What you and Rafe and Damien have done is an amazing and extremely disturbing expose of high level government and corporate corruption and theft.

    Now we must set it right and end this reign of terror and hideous corruption.

    It was BCIMC and CAI Private Equity Partners, who took our property, using criminal gangster tactics and fraud, and they are the same players involved in the take down of BC Hydro.

    This is the heart of darkness in BC.

    See also De Smog’s article about Fracking and BC Hydro entitled “A Big Fracking problem in B.C.” where B.C. Hydro’s own Safety Engineers were warning their head office of the high possibility of a fracking induced earthquake causing the Bennett Dam to collapse.

    The consequences of such a dam collapse would not only bankrupt BC Hydro, but wipe out northern BC (ironically the very voters who supported Christy Clark’s Liberals most fervently).

    I believe that this may have been the ultimate plan of the Christy Clark government.

    As we both agree, removing the BC Liberal Christy Clark government was not only a matter of justice and social equity, is was a matter of survival, as I truly believe that her government’s plan (known only to a few insiders such as Coleman and Christy) was to suck the province dry with the most horrific resource gas extraction process ever devised and then bankrupt WAC Bennett’s amazing legacy of BC Hydro so as to sell it for pennies to the Private Equity gang of ruthless criminal predators exactly as they did to our family’s home and business.

    Like most serial criminals the modus operandi never changes, just the names of the victims. This was all done to us and the people of BC by the BC Liberal governments of Gordon Campbell (now hiding out in Ontario apparently) and Christy Clark (soon to move to a jurisdiction with no extradition treaties we are told).

    Thanks again, Norm, for standing tall for the people of B.C.

    Best Regards,

    Jack English (250) 510-9474

    ________________________________

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  4. We should understand and remember always that we’re in another election campaign and the Liberals have the money to have another go and the Greens/NDP do not. I’m revolted at the idea of 5 minutes more of Christy & Co but I’m a realist. Watch Grace McCarthy’s State Funeral and remember Clark at Bill Bennett’s Memorial and her most inappropriate political speech, the women has all the class of a warthog in heat..

    Like the majority I want Horgan/Weaver to have a shot at governing but, again, we must know and remember that the Liberals can make governing all but impossible with stalling tactics. The real question now is how are the Liberals going to play it, always bearing in mind that political morality is an oxymoron and to Liberals, parliamentary tradition is something to joke about over gins and tonic by the pool.

    Norm’s analysis is bang on as to the options facing a leader who respects the people and the traditions they inherited. The trouble is that Christy & Co do not and they still have a full arsenal.

    Of course, dammit, we should have reformed this appslling system we call “Responsible Government” but we didn’t and we’re still in the game where cheaters can and usually do win and politicians who have taken cheating to a high art form are dealing. With political poltroons like Trudeau, minor, and Notley at the gate and a mass of Quislings guarding it, we can either take it on the chin like brave little kids or drop the gloves and start punching.

    This old fart has, reluctantly, concluded on a heap of evidence that Leo Durocher was right, or pretty close to it,, when he said “nice guys finish last” unless one heeds, symbolically of course, Mencken’s “Every normal man must be tempted at times to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin to slit throats”,

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  5. Should Ms. Clark eventually become the leader of the opposition, Weaver/Horgan must make sure the forensic audit has taken place. They’ll need those facts to prevent Ms. Clark from spinning another web of deception during “Question Period”.

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    • Indeed – and (re)open a BC Rail enquiry, etc.

      I suspect that there is actually enough out there to put Clark and many of her cronies behind bars and we need a government that goes after its predecessors crimes like a pitbull.

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  6. I have every hope the NDP/Green alliance will last for four years, but realistically we should expect another election sometime in the next 18-24 months, if not sooner.

    The actions of Christy Clark and the BC Liberals in the last 4 years have clearly resulted in the loss of enough votes to deny them the ability to form government. Their actions since have put an exclamation point on it. Part of those actions include a shameful denial of the public’s right of access to government records, including keeping records of government activity in the first instance.

    Once what’s left of the public record after Christy Clark and the BC Liberals are finished with their extensive final cleanse during this interim period is examined by the incoming government, and public servants are allowed to speak the truth without fear of BC Liberal recrimination, the public will have even more reason to deny BC Liberals the ability to form government.

    In fact after the revelations that are sure to come, despite the soft edge put on them by most of the local media that is just as sure to come, and despite their ill achieved and overflowing financial war chest, the BC Liberals may not want a quick election.

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  7. All of the criminals disagree with all of law and order. They really just don’t give a shit!

    They will just use money, to make you stop. Then an Election. As they trim their toenails with their desperate teeth/

    Dial a display of a hard hat on the ground, with Miss Christy weeping. Sad day when All of her helmutts…………………..were taken by the courts.

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  8. All of the criminals disagree with all of law and order. They really just don’t give a shit!

    They will just use money, to make you stop. Then an Election. As they trim their toenails with their desperate teeth/ (This may be not).

    Dial a display of a hard hat on the ground, with Miss Christy weeping. Sad day when All of her helmutts…………………..were taken by the courts.

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  9. Christy Clark and her cabal can’t go fast enough but it is doubtful they will. There is all that money to be made as you outlined and all those documents to be shredded and computers to be triple deleted.

    its is interesting the figures you quote regarding “business’ in B.C. Christy has all this money for her “power developing” friends, yet we here in Nanaimo are being told that once people are released from hospital, they are on their own. There is not funding available from the Vancouver Island Health Authority for community care. People are given a list of for profit care businesses and you can have at it. Yes, VIHA cut all funding for care, so people either stay in the hospital or they do without if they can’t afford the companies on the list.

    A physically disabled person, who lost use of one leg, and diagnosed with Parkinson Disease is sent home and told here it the list of for profit companies which will provide care. VIHA no longer provides funding or advise. Need some one to clean your house because you are unable to do so, tough luck. professionals will only review your home for safety purposes after you’re released from hospital. So you could fall and die. Not until a lawsuit was threatened did they agree to send an occupational therapist to the home first.

    So if Christy Clark has all those hundreds of millions to give to her wealthy corporate friends why can’t people in Nanaimo receive care in their homes as they are in other health authority areas? perhaps it has something to do with the 3 new privately built ware houses for the elderly and disabled? Well if you can’t live at home because there is no support system in place, one would have to go to one of the for profit care homes or die in place at home. Christy Clark GO AWAY. WE WANT OUR FAMILY MEMBERS TO LIVE NOT TO DIE IN THE MESS YOU HAVE CREATED!

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