Category: Natural Resources

Favoured friends

After the Campbell Liberals were  elected in 2001, influences of special business interests grew rapidly. Under Christina Clark’s leadership, non-renewable resource companies wield great political power and they use it to minimize […]

Gas production ↑ 85%, public revenue ↓ 90%

Premier Clark averred that meeting needs of children in government care is dependent on new funding from new industrial and commercial activities in British Columbia… That condition was not applied to construction of the Site C dam that will ultimately cost $10-$15 billion. Nor was it applied to about $10 billion of road and bridge construction in the lower mainland or $1 billion spent to deliver subsidized power to Murray Edwards’ Red Chris mine. Nor was it a condition precedent when Clark wanted to expand the size of her cabinet or hire yet more government spin doctors. A $200 million tax break for our richest citizens did not depend on new economic activity.

Our wealth commands us

As a student politician in her untenured days at SFU, Christy Clark operated with an imperfect moral compass. When final history is written, the hallmark of her premiership will be deceit and corruption. Her government regularly wages war against working people and helps contractors evade the few responsibilities owed employees. Income and disability assistance rates were last raised on June 1, 2007 but annual drilling subsidies to gas producers climbed 130% in the same time frame, from $370 million to $850 million. In addition, since 2007, natural gas royalties receipts declined from $1.2 billion to $185 million in the current fiscal year. Revenues from gas and petroleum rights sales fell from $2.4 billion in fiscal year 2009 to only $9.7 million in the first 11 months of 2015.

One other Commission of Inquiry is needed

BC Liberal involvement with Big Pharma is at the root of high-level government decisions to kneecap research into the safety and efficacy of more than $25 billion worth of pharmaceuticals sold each year in Canada. Drug research conducted by the Health Ministry and agencies like Therapeutics Initiative threatened the financial interests of indulgent Christy Clark sponsors. Her government squeezed T.I. financially but solid public support for the independent effort kept Liberals from killing it. As a result, the politicians chose a different approach to discredit drug research.

Myth busting

Andrew Nikiforuk wrote advice for Albertans in his recent article Eight Steps to Reform the Broken Petrostate: Behave like an owner: Alberta’s oil and gas resources belong to Albertans. The Tories’ “strip […]

Flawed analysis

Following the passing of Alberta’s Conservative party, Macleans writer Colby Cosh described a drawn-out illness that made the result inevitable. Followers of British Columbia politics will recognize symptoms also found west of […]