"Government is there to serve the people, not keep the people in servitude to it and under its thumb. Small government is the best government. Get out of my life, and out of my pocket."

~~ Brian R. Wilson

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

ADAM OLSEN: I’m talking about practice. Practice! That’s right, practice!

A recent addition to my podcast library is "Finding Mastery with Michael Gervais." Gervais is a high-performance psychologist. His list of clients is impressive, and it includes Seattle Seahawks Head Coach Pete Carroll.

Steve Kerr, Head Coach of the NBA's Golden State Warriors and former player for the San Antonio Spurs and Chicago Bulls, was Gervais most recent guest at the time of my introduction to his podcast.

It was one of those "coincidental" moments. Just a few days earlier someone asked me "if the B.C. Greens were the Chicago Bulls which one would you be?" (It's a long story, but that is what happened.)

"Steve Kerr!" I said without hesitation. Well, after listening to Kerr talk about his philosophy and process, it's a good answer. Kerr has won eight NBA championships. Three as a coach, and five as a player. He's coached his Warriors squad to four straight NBA Finals.

Leading through the issues

In politics, it is easy to get caught up in each and every issue. There is always an issue-du-jour. It is incredibly easy to react to one, and then the next, and the next, matching the level of outrage that pours freely into the inbox.

But that is not helpful. Nor is it leadership.

There’re is no disputing the fact that debt will increase more than ten times higher than what the Ministry of Finance claims will be our budget surplus

LET ME GET THIS OUT OF THE WAY FIRST ... there is no disputing the fact that debt will increase more than ten times faster than what the Ministry of Finance claims will be our budget surplus.

 Okay ... now on to yesterdays Budget Speech

“Budget 2019 creates opportunities, makes life better for people”; so stated BC
NDP Finance Minister Carole James in announcing Budget 2019 yesterday

Right off the bat Finance Minister Carole James informed us that Budget
2019 would be creating opportunities for all British Columbians by delivering a new B.C. Child Opportunity Benefit for kids up to the age of 18, removing interest from B.C. student loans, reducing taxes for businesses, and investing in clean energy and climate solutions.

ALL THIS while balancing the budget over the next three years --- well sort of because it depends on if your calculator is functioning correctly.

Now I would be remiss if I did not point out the good in this new budget, and which I am glad to see.  My decision to do so was backed up in part after receiving a note from a friend who said to me, “I'd urge you to not mimic the Liberals' sky-is-falling nonsense. This budget helps lots of people like families and students”.

And it does indeed ….

First among them is the decision to eliminate interest on student loans. Indeed, as the government has stated, “Higher education should open doors, not make it harder to get ahead.”  Our province is in desperate need of medical people – hopefully this may allow more of our young people to enter medical school … perhaps someone who will graduate from high school this spring will decide the door has now opened for them to join those who will create the next generations of high-tech break-throughs ... the list goes on just from that one budget item alone, on how our province – our children and grandchildren - will be able to benefit from just this alone.

Raising disability, and income assistance, rates by $50 per month will I’m sure be welcome relief to those struggling to get by.  I am also delighted to see nearly $100 million go to support children and youth with special needs, and who are in residential care.

And I am also pleased to see that the new K-12 curriculum continues the recent work of weaving Indigenous knowledge and perspectives across every grade level by increasing the presence of Indigenous culture and history throughout all areas of learning in BC schools.

This next one come under the heading of partially righting a huge wrong from several years ago. 

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

FELDSTED: Over two years of government assurances that ‘all is well’ have worn thin. Evidence is mounting that the government has a major mess on its hands

From the Toronto Star ~~ Friday February 8, 2019

In September, about a month after quitting the Conservative Party, Bernier founded the People’s Party of Canada. Pundits and rival politicians dismissed it as a vanity project, the product of Bernier’s bitterness after having lost the Conservative leadership to Andrew Scheer in 2017.

But in just four months, the PPC signed up more than 33,000 members and has become a thorn in the side of Scheer and the Conservative Party, which has been forced to protect its right flank on issues like immigration and identity. More importantly, the PPC now has electoral district associations in every one of the country’s 338 federal ridings. Considering the party was little more than an angry Twitter feed last fall, the speed of PPC’s rise is notable.

Bernier declined through a spokesperson to speak to the Star for this story, but has said he wants
nothing to do with white nationalists. “Racists are not welcome in this party,” he told Montreal radio station CJAD in December.

Lumping together ‘neo-Nazis’, the ‘alt-right’ and ‘far-right’ -- while leaving out radicals from the lunatic left -- is hardly fair and balanced. Contending that this ‘problem’ is confined to Max Bernier and his People’s Party is ludicrous.  

The “far-right” (and left) has been around for decades. The ‘far-right’ is a handy label for anyone who disagrees with liberal / left / socialist views and is used so often and indiscriminately it has lost meaning. There are extremists in all sectors of the political spectrum.

Extremists try to align themselves with any federal and provincial politician, or party, that might give them voice. No one is immune. Their following is too small to form a political movement, so they try to find a home within an existing party and work within it. The PPC is no more vulnerable than any other political party.

“Some members of the street-entrenched population” are causing problems. Some of the problem people are homeless, some are addicts, some are mentally ill ... but no one category defines the problem at hand

Along the beach -- night time in Penticton

Every community suffers from these things.  Problems resulting from homelessness ... overuse, excessive use, and addiction to drugs and ... spray-painted scrawling doodles, that most do not find artistic, and which have to be cleaned up ... panhandlers and street-people.

Last Summer, the City of Penticton decided it was time to take action because, as Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) Peter Weeber stated:

A very small amount of people are causing a tremendous amount of problems in our community.”

In a July 2018 media release, the city pulled no punches making it clear that enough was enough:

Penticton is a beautiful and safe community. Penticton is our home. If you are here to enjoy all Penticton has to offer, “Welcome.” If you are here to break the law, drink and use drugs in a public place, occupy and damage city and private property, your life is about to get complicated.”

The City of Penticton is taking a zero-tolerance approach to all unacceptable behaviors and illegal activities.

The communication went on to say, “It is time to take our community back from a small group of people that cause a high percentage of the problems. We encourage residents and visitors to report any activity that threatens the safety and beauty of our home”.

Over the weekend I asked Mr. Weeber about managing, solving, and finding a balance to problems that were occurring in Penticton, and he said to me ... “The issues we are experiencing can only be managed not solved.  Successful management of the issues require collaboration and balance.”

Monday, February 18, 2019

It’s a pity – no it’s actually disgusting-- that smaller and fewer newsrooms, owned and operated by fewer and fewer independent companies, will have the say on what gets shown tomorrow

Let any resource company try and build an approved pipeline, with the highest degree of safety measures anywhere in the world, and you'll see hundreds upon hundreds of (often time) paid protesters onsite, back-stopped of course by local infant toddlers holding (barely) protest signs ... all the way up to granny and grandpa too.

You’ll see hours of video ... news story after news stories by the so-called mainstream local, and national news outlets, showing this.  What they don’t show you however are the vast majority – excluding those foreign funded and paid protesters – that have NO IDEA what’s happening other than they have been told resource development is bad – will pollute – and will destroy.

Convoy trucker Brad Schnell
In the midst of the real people of the land, are anarchists who’s only mission is to destroy.  AND THAT makes for great news --- great in the sense it is sensationalized, and creates a large audience for radio, newspaper, and TV.  An audience they flog to big business selling corn fluffs and soap buds, and all the necessities of life.

Just for interests earlier today, I took a minute (and indeed that was ALL it took), to see what news there is today of the national truck convoy protesting Ottawa's continued delays in getting pipelines built.

What did I see?  One story and one story alone in the National Post, CTV, and Global ... and not a single one was more than a couple hundred words.


Right now, hundreds upon hundreds of individuals from communities across Canada, are on the outskirts of Ottawa, where they will arrive tomorrow, including Brad Shell, supporting his son-in-law, the oil and gas industry, and Suits Boots and, just one of the organizations taking part.

And each and every one of the people taking part in this convoy to Ottawa is doing so on their own dime – THEY ARE NOT funded by U.S. interests who determined to see OUR recourse industry flounder and eventually die.