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British Columbia's HST fiasco

Did Finance Minister Kevin Falcon or any of the Liberals learn anything from the HST referendum?

Premier Christy Clark promised that the referendum would take place just like a normal election, but she then allowed third-party advertisements without disclosure. We'll never know how many millions were spent on trying to convince people to vote for the HST, but we know the government spent $7 million. It wasn't just the advertising campaign that failed any reasonable test of transparency; information provided by the government and its "independent panel" couldn't be verified. One of the lessons the Liberals should learn from their HST failure is that transparency is essential in order to earn public trust.


Jobs! Money! Nope! Benefits of LNG exports grossly exaggerated

Photo: flickr/Chris Yakimov

In the 2013 provincial election, Christy Clark's Liberals promised that exporting liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Asia would provide jobs and expand government revenues.

A year and a half later this boom is nowhere to be seen.

Fifteen liquefying plants and pipelines have been promoted. Six were reported to be on the verge of starting construction. But in early October, Petronas -- the company closest to seeking regulatory approval -- announced that it was considering shelving its proposal.

The Malaysian government-owned corporation wanted assurances that provincial and federal taxes and royalties would be kept low and that the company could bring in workers from abroad to construct and operate its facilities.


| September 11, 2014
September 10, 2014 |
B.C. public sector unions are sending a message to the Premier that they stand in solidarity with B.C. teachers and are urging her to accept the proposal for binding arbitration.

Dear Christy Clark: Let's chat about what taxpayers can afford

Photo: flickr/Tomash Devenishek

Dear Christy,

I'm sorry that you did not take my advice in my last letter when I suggested that you should get teachers back into classrooms as soon as possible. I'm sure your government would have much more support right now if you had taken my advice but I understand that sometimes the right message just comes at the wrong time.

Now, I'm writing to you about what you've said in response to the breakdown in talks to end the teachers' strike. You said that you want a negotiated deal that taxpayers can afford. This has left me with a lot of questions.


August 5, 2014 |
Christy Clark government's latest political ploy in its dispute with the BC Teachers Federation demonstrates the BC Liberals' lack of commitment to education.

Why B.C. Liberals want to push to privatize public education

Photo: flickr/Tyler Nienhouse

"Privatization does not mean you take a public institution and give it to some nice person. It means you take a public institution and give it to an unaccountable tyranny." -- Noam Chomsky, American philosopher

The B.C. Liberal government can't fail when it comes to further privatizing public education.

That conclusion is clear as B.C. teachers face their summer of discontent on picket lines without strike pay, mediation, negotiations or any movement on class size and composition.

But for the government, it's the summer of privatization love. Look at the evidence:


Photo: BC Gov Photos/flickr
| July 18, 2014
| July 3, 2014
Image: Flickr/Caelie_Frampton
| June 23, 2014
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