“Every adversity, every failure, every heartache, carries with it the seeds of an equal or greater benefit.”

~~ Napoleon Hill -- American Author -- Oct 26, 1883 to Nov 8, 1970

Saturday, December 31, 2016

"Is the funding formula one third of net revenue ($125 million minimum) ... or has the government arbitrarily decided it will now be capped at $135?" And ... Happy New Year too.

2016 is hours away from wrapping up, and a new year looms just over the horizon. 

Before I go though, I took some time this morning to have a look back at some stories from the blog this past year.  Not surprisingly, the two top stories were about the BC Conservative Party.

"Wasting one more minute of time and energy in the BC Conservative Party, by anyone, is sheer lunacy!"  from February 5th


"Dan Brooks hold, on the helm of the BC Conservative Party, seems very much in question"  from October 20th


Following that, from October 9th, came "How Much More Then Could We Be Thankful For?

And "You are welcome to believe whatever you want. I have to tell you however, you are living in a dream world if you think the majority of British Columbians will agree with you." peaked readers interests on June 10th

I'll mention this one as well, but it was only posted a on December 22nd;  "There certainly is a fluctuation ... government revenues fluctuate upwards, while grants to community groups fluctuate downwards!"

Why, you say, am I mentioning it?  Only because the BC Liberal government gave me more ammunition to work with. 


Yesterday, included in an email re-release of information (Government of BC featured Programs and Services), was a news(?) story from December 8th entitled; "Revamped Community Gaming Grant guidelines support better service"

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Would any of these Bah-Hum-Bug, anti-Christmas manics, think twice to rename any of the holidays, and special times, of other faiths and religions?

Today is December 25th, the day many through-out the world celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ.

Whether this is the actual day ... or even if it was exactly 2,016 years ago, is not really relevant to me.  For me, and so many others across the globe, the birth of Jesus represents human-kinds opportunity to have a Saviour -- one who we call the King of Kings.

I love the story of Christmas ... I love to hear stories from others about Christmas past ... and I love all the special programs that I get to enjoy hearing on the radio.  Well many radio stations in my community -- not so much on our so-called national broadcaster however.

There I have found, and heard, the most diluted pablum of holiday mush.  

Never wishing to offend anyone who does not call themselves a Christian, the CBC, in a backhanded way, instead insults the millions of Canadians that have no problem -- issue -- or concern about calling this time of year what it is ... CHRISTMAS.

Christmas, complete with Joy to The World, Silent Night, and Angels we have Heard on High; songs written so long ago many, nearly all, know the songs by heart.  Then there are newfound songs of Christmas, so of which over the coming years and decades will also find their way to becoming Christmas classics.

It's not just our National Broadcaster however that intentionally, or non-intentionally wishes to remove "Christ" from Christmas ... it's a host of others not wishing to offend anyone, in any way.

Then there are those who would stamp out ANY mention of the religious meaning of Christmas.  To those who are pricked in their very being, by the word Christmas, it must be eradicated.

Happy Holidays ... Best of the Festive Season ... Happy Solstice ... Good Yule ...
"Happy Festivus" is the traditional greeting of Festivus, a
holiday featured in the Season 9 episode of Seinfeld

Happy Festivus ... and many other alternatives are their choices.  But tell me, if this time of year, and Christmas Day in particular, have no meaning, then why the need to create other variations and version to use as greetings?

If they are not celebrating Christmas, in the tradition of Christmas, which is Christs birth, then they have no need of any holiday or special time to partake in.

The Huffington Post published an interfaith calendar of religious holidays, and it is very extensive. Would any of these Bah-Hum-Bug, anti-Christmas manics, think twice to rename any of the holidays, and special times, of other faiths and religions? 

No ... not a chance.

Our national broadcaster, and those who are anti-Christian, will only take pot-shots (deliberately or by omission) at those whom it is socially acceptable to do so against.

Today is CHRISTMAS ... that's what I am celebrating.  And the greeting I used on the street as I went about Kamloops during December ... and YES even at my place of work, was "Merry Christmas".

That's what time of year it is ... and I'll make no apologies for that.

In Kamloops, I'm Alan Forseth.



Thursday, December 22, 2016

There certainly is a fluctuation ... government revenues fluctuate upwards, while grants to community groups fluctuate downwards!

On Wednesday December 7th, Peter Fassbender (Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development) released information about on-going, and up-coming, changes it was making to the Community Gaming Program. He stated:

I want to thank the Office of the Auditor General for completing their thorough performance audit of our Community Gaming Grants program. I am pleased that the audit found government has a suitable framework in place to administer the program, and we recognize that improvements are needed in some key areas.

“The report outlines 10 recommendations, including the development of a performance management framework, and to evaluate the approach used in assessing applications. Government accepts all 10 recommendations."

A brief summary, and history, of gaming and gambling in British Columbia reminds us that:

  • up to 1969 public gambling / gaming was illegal in Canada
  • then in the 1970s non-profit organizations were able to generate gaming revenue through licenses for bingos and raffles ... as well as sell lottery tickets for a sales commission
  • the B.C. Gaming Commission, responsible for developing provincial gaming policy and regulating and licensing gaming events, was created in 1987
  • over the next 10 years several reviews were completed, and a number of changes put in place.  One of these was the end of charitable gambling licenses for casinos.  Instead, direct access grants were established to replace the lost revenue that organizations had earned from operating charitable casinos. Bingo affiliation grants were combined with direct access grants in 2010 to form the Community Gaming Grants program that exists today

As the government itself states:
In 1999, following the changes to gaming policy, the Government of British Columbia, the BC Bingo Council and the B.C. Association for Charitable Gaming signed a Memorandum of Agreement to govern the parties’ actions until legislation was passed.

The memorandum set out a formula, giving charitable organizations one-third of government net community casino gaming revenue, with a minimum of $125 million indexed to inflation.

So how has that worked out for community groups, across the province?

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

If this plan get's the same warnings, from both the Tyee and the Rebel, then that clearly says this is nothing more than crass vote buying

Bill Tieleman and the Tyee ... and Ezra Levant's The Rebel ... are singing off the same song sheet?? Say it ain't so!


But it is so, and I was as shocked, as you likely are, that they would come at the same story, from the same angle. Both stories, as you can see below, say that:


1.      Christy Clark and the BC Liberals are doing this purely for political gain

2.      Market price correction could seriously jeopardize these home buyers

3.      It could, again, drive market prices upwards


THE REBEL:  "BC Liberals program to aid first time home buyers comes with great peril"

... with an election only five months away, the last thing the BC Liberals want to see is for that bubble to burst since it would almost certainly cause them to be defeated ... while this program isn’t as crazy as the kind of policies we saw down south over a decade ago, it is awfully suspect and if there is a major price correction I wonder how many defaulted mortgages the taxpayer will now be partially on the hook for?

THE TYEE:  "Liberals’ Homebuyer Plan: Short-Term Political Gain for Long-Term Taxpayer Pain"

Premier Christy Clark’s homebuyers plan provides short-term gain for the BC Liberal Party and long-term pain for those who borrow money from the government, taxpayers and the B.C. housing market ... who cares if some first time homebuyers can’t make their mortgage payment and lose their houses down the road ... the B.C. government plan will increase competition for the already limited supply of housing ...

If this plan gets the same warnings from both the Tyee and the Rebel, then that clearly says this is nothing more than crass vote buying ... but also, as they have both stated, it also comes with a huge potential downside for every single person in BC.

For the voters of BC, many of those at least who tend to vote centre-right, the option for us to have a government that can earn our respect is no where to be found.

Sham?   Shame ??? 

What difference does it make.  Election 2017 in BC, I predict, will have the lowest voter turn-out in decades.

In Kamloops, I'm Alan Forseth

Monday, December 5, 2016

How about gentle, kind spirited, men staffing women's shelters?

What a terrible message (Christian schools state that it's teachers should not participate in things like public drunkenness and watching porn),” said former Vancouver school trustee Patti Bacchus.  

Something like that, it just goes backwards. It’s flat-out discrimination and a violation of someone’s human rights.”

Oh really? That's just crap to put it plain and simple!

It's a good thing she, as a Vancouver school trustee, did get canned!

And, why shouldn't Christian schools have that kind of policy in place? If not, then what really is the sense in having religious schools?  It is absurd to even consider that Christian Schools would have anyone but teachers with a Christian background as educators.

Patti Bacchus, former Vancouver School Board Trustee
Let's see, by Bacchus's own standards of discrimination, and the violation of human rights, should we allow men to staff women's shelters and women's societies?

No of course not -- the very thought is as stupid as she presents in her argument against Christian schools having standards that pertain to their beliefs.

Okay ... then how about gentle kind spirited men staffing women's shelters, or being on the boards and executives of women's societies?  No, that's not going to happen, because these organizations need to have the ability to hire those who best meet the criteria for their organizations.

Yes, our society most be open and inclusive, however we cannot at the same time tear down groups and organizations that are created for the betterment of the people they represent ... and who have standards that need to be met.

That goes for Christian Schools ... women's organizations ... and other groups and organizations that have specific needs and outcomes.

It's NOT "flat-out discrimination and a violation of someone’s human rights” ... it's just common sense.

In Kamloops, I'm Alan Forseth

Saturday, December 3, 2016

We can take satisfaction in providing them with a place to console each another ... and to chant, drum, and sing Kumbaya to their hearts content

Is it too late to weigh in on the Trans Mountain Pipeline ... now that it has been approved? 

I don't think so.

I, along with hundreds of thousands of Canadians, have long been saying YES to this job creating project ... a project that will generate billions in resources to local, provincial and federal governments.

Taxpayers have been tapped, and tapped again and again, for more and more money.  I for one say, "We don't have any more to give!". 

That said, I know that we need improvements to health care as more and more Canadians age ... for education to provide for new schools, and improvements to ones already in our neighbourhoods ... for training to help mature workers transition into the new economies ... for highway improvements ... and so much more.

Those same naysayers are calling for more spending in these areas, and yet they seem to have no reality as to where this money can, or will. come from.

Oh right ... let the rich pay.  Well they never do ... it's always the ever shrinking middle class that coughs up more and more of their hard earned income.

An email I received earlier this week, from Canada's Energy Citizens, stated that with the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion we could see more than 32,000 jobs every year for the next 25 years; jobs that will provide an additional $47 billion in revenue for governments at all levels ... including First Nations.

Meantime, a loud minority of hypocritical British Columbians continue to shout of doom and gloom should Trans Mountain go ahead ... despite an existing a pipeline already in place where the expansion is planned ... and a safety record any industrial company in the world would be proud of. 

Regardless of fact, scientific studies and research, these doom and gloom nay says continue to spout hyperbole.  All the while, some in the media spotlight these agitators who will not be satisfied with anything less than Canadian energy resources being shut down completely, and as soon as possible.

Ever ready to get on her green agenda soapbox, Green Party Leader Elizabeth May has welcomed the opportunity to go to jail in her fight to oppose the project.

Why do I mention that? 

Because it's GOOD ... great in fact.  Put her, along with the mayors of Vancouver, Burnaby, and Victoria in jail then if that's where they want to be. 

I'm sure there has to be at least one recently closed jail available for use, that can house protesters that get in the way of this project going ahead.  By putting them all together in one place, we can take satisfaction in providing them with a place to console each another ... and to chant, drum, and sing Kumbaya to their hearts content.

Canadian resources have been trapped for too long, and the federal governments approval of this project is long overdue.  Let's get on with it.

In Kamloops, I'm Alan Forseth.

Friday, December 2, 2016

If We Are Seeking Moral and Ethical Leadership, I Think We All Got On The Wrong Train

Today, we have a guest post from my friend Sandy, AKA "The Sidewinder".  While Sandy lives in the lower mainland, his piece is certainly fitting to our community of Kamloops, and hundreds of similar lives that are impacted in the same way, in our own city.

We've now had a few years of the low barrier, harm reduction approach to solving or coping with our widespread illicit drug use epidemic. Maybe it's now time to review what has been accomplished.

Almost every public health official, provincial housing authority, city councilor, police officer and drug counselor in this province openly acknowledge the growing tragedy of drug overdose deaths in British Columbia.

According to Minister of Health Terry Lake, so far this year, more than six hundred deaths in this province are attributable to overdoses of illicit drugs. He also cited the use of fentanyl as one of the leading factors in this outrageous tragedy; although, I don't personally understand what in hell difference it makes what drugs were involved. The point is that despite all the talk and wasted money, people are dying in ever increasing numbers.

The official namby-pamby low barrier, housing first approach didn't save any of these lives but the government keeps pouring money into non-effective so-called harm reduction programs.

We now have safe injection sites and likely coming soon to a neighbourhood near you, we'll also have supervised injections sites. I guess the next logical step in this goofy pattern is home delivery of free drugs with nursing supervision.

Ah, but all hope isn't lost. BC Health Minister Terry Lake is lobbying Ottawa for greater support from the federal government to help deal with our botched approach to the epidemic of drug deaths related to the use of illegal drugs.

The do-gooders, hand-wringers and poverty pimps who rely on drug use and drug abuse as their reason for being will all tell you that we need to spend even more money to help them continue in their failed attempts at salvation for drug and alcohol addicts and those suffering from mental health illnesses.

Obviously, at our own local level, doing nothing is not an option but the answer won't be found by spending more money and adding more bureaucrats to the public payroll.

There must be an expanded dialogue between various federal, provincial and local authorities and the public who pay the bills. That process must begin with a new approach that isn't mandated by the prevailing one-size-fits-all policy.

Although drug use, petty and major crime and other related matters are garnering all the headlines, there are a couple of other major issues which reflect a serious decline in the moral fiber of our communities.

We have a large casino which city council lusted after because of the huge cash inflow to city coffers. We also have lottery outlets in almost every retail outlet in the province.

The upside cash flow from gambling frequently trumps any discussion of the moral issues involved but there are too many undeniable tragedies unfolding in our community everyday as a result of addictive gambling habits that can't be ignored.

We also have liquor available in every corner of town. There are thousands of seats in bars, restaurants, pubs and other establishments which allow serving liquor.

Liquor is also available in grocery stores and possibly will soon be available even in barber shops.

There is a terrible immorality in the city's lust for revenue from these sources. We're already paying for the social clean-up and downside of these revenue sources and the bills keep growing.

We are now confronted with broken families, ruined lives, drug addiction, alcoholism, mental illness, deaths and gambling addictions and, without a change in attitude, the numbers of people currently affected are only going to continue to grow.

With the attitude of the provincial government and city councils which encourage and promote these questionable revenue sources, we seem to be well down the road to becoming a modern day Sodom and Gomorrah.

If we are seeking moral and ethical leadership, I think we all got on the wrong train.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Lost jobs equals decreased population, equals reduced services, equals closed businesses, equals closed schools

The latest from the BC government says that it is, " ... seeking public input on rural education as part of a strategy being created by Parliamentary Secretary for Rural Education Linda Larson to better understand the needs of students, parents, schools and communities in rural BC ..."

I guess the biggest need would be to actually keep schools, in rural communities, open.

Problem is however, that the government has failed, miserably, to provide the supports and structure rural communities need, as well as failing to have resource development approved to ensure long-term, and increased employment, in rural British Columbia.

In key sectors, for rural and small town BC, job losses have been dramatic (BC Stats Earnings and Employment Trends - October 2016):
  • Agriculture ... down 33% since 2006
  • Forestry and Logging ... down 19% since 2007
  • Fishing, Hunting and Trapping down 31% since 2007

Lost jobs equals decreased population, equals reduced services, equals closed businesses, equals closed schools.  On top of that it also means closed hospitals, court houses, and government agencies.

The latest in a long list of job losses will be just down the road in Merritt, in a matter of months ... over 200 direct jobs as a results of Tolko closing their mill in just a few weeks.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

What you say ... no talk about debt, health care, education, jobs, and resources?

With six months still to go until the next provincial election in British Columbia, I'm already I am asking myself, "Who will I vote for? Will there be a candidate I can support?  Who will not only say the things I want to hear, but follow through on them?"

I've created a list of things I will be listening to hear answers to, in the months ahead.  It's a short list for now, but will likely grown, and be edited and revised, in the weeks and months ahead.  These are the things I will use to help me when the moment comes to place my "X" on the ballot.

What personal skills, knowledge, and background to you have which will make you the best candidate for the people of Kamloops South Thompson to consider in casting a ballot for you?

If elected as the MLA for Kamloops South Thompson in next Mays provincial election, what will be your top priorities for the riding?

How will you seek input, from constituents, in issues important to the riding, and how will that affect how you vote in the legislature?

Many provinces have multiple parties represented in their legislatures, however BC for decades now seems to be locked into a two party system, as in the US.  What negatives, and positives, do you see for the people of BC with the system as it currently is?

Politics in BC has become very adversarial.  Do you believe there is a way this can be reduced?  If "Yes", what would be the benefits to the way we are governed?

Do you believe there should be more free votes in the legislature, so that elected officials can vote the will of constituents, even if it is in conflict with the will of the government, IF there was a way it did not bring down the government? 

What you say ... no talk about debt, health care, education, jobs, and resources? 

Yes those are VERY important, however, I think answers to the above will strongly factor in to how our elected representative will act on them.

As I mentioned, that is my list -- for now -- and a lot more will factor into my decision on election day.  It will do for now though. 

My question to you is, how will you decide to vote, and what will factor into that decision?

I'm Alan Forseth, in Kamloops

Thursday, November 17, 2016

REALLY... there aren't enough places already for people to get a drink?

Yesterday, from the BC Government's Jobs Plan, came news that, "... liquor licences will soon be available to all types of BC businesses, including barber shops!"

REALLY... there aren't enough places already for people to get a drink?

The news release went on to say that effective January 23rd of next year:

Businesses like barber shops, salons, spas, cooking schools, art galleries and book stores will be able to apply for a liquor licence to diversify their business model and serve liquor to customers.

All types of businesses will be able to apply for a liquor primary licence, so long as they do not operate from a motor vehicle or target minors.

This change will provide flexibility for businesses to expand and offer new services to their patrons ... and increase consumer choice for British Columbians.

Well, thank goodness they won't be able to operate from a motor vehicle, but tell me, "How exactly will these patrons, imbibing on the spirits, be arriving and leaving from said businesses?"

But you say, "I should have the convenience of enjoying a glass of bubbly while I enjoy reading my new book, or have my nails trimmed and buffed."

Too bad ... enjoy it at home!

There are already three dozen liquor stores in Kamloops ... few if any restaurants don't already have liquor available ... and it's the same for nearly every hotel in the city as well.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Finally at least one news media outlet is saying what I have for years ... enough crap about doing your job; it's what you're supposed to do

Two things caught my eye today, that has spurred on my post today. 

One was the fact that the Tri-City News has decided to trash media releases from the BC government, that are little more than generic announcements about every day things ... the other was the announcement that former TV personality Steve Darling will be a candidate for the BC Liberals in next Mays provincial election.

First to the Tri-City News.  In an editorial dated November 8th, titled "We're waiting for the good news", they state:

"Stop, already! We get that the BC Liberal government wants credit for spending money to maintain the province's schools. But it's time the province stop sending press releases about small pots of money that are being spent on things like roof repairs and flooring upgrades — work that should be going no matter who is in power and doesn't require the additional spotlight of media coverage."

HURRAY ... finally at least one news media outlet is saying what I have for years ... enough crap about doing your job; it's what you're supposed to do.  Painting lines on a highway, filling in potholes, fixing a roof, renovating a hospital ward ... that's NOT news, and it's NOT worthy of news coverage, or the (tens of) thousands of dollars that get spent flying, and driving, around Cabinet Ministers to grandiose news announcements.

Is there really that little of importance, that you are doing as a government, that you have to frivolously waste taxpayers money for this kind of crap? 

Global TV ... CTV ... The Sun ... The Province ... the CBC ... the Times Colonist and others; take notice of a small community paper and follow suit!  DON'T give governments, at any level, ink space for nothing announcements.  Instead, like the Tri-City news, write an editorial yourselves decrying this meaninglessness drivel coming from the governments propaganda departments.

Enough on that, and on to the second thing that caught my eye today ... and that was the announcement by BC Liberals, that they have brought former Global morning news personality Steve Darling to their team as a candidate, for Burnaby Lougheed.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Public service is not an option for a healthy community or for a democratic society; it is a prerequisite

Steven Puhallo

Steven Puhallo is the Executive Director of the Kamloops North Shore Business Association (NSBIA). He has had a successful career as a public affairs and strategic communications professional with a broad range of experience at senior levels of government and in the private sector.

Today, I have provided him with the opportunity to have a guest post on my blog.

By way of background, Steven is the Executive Director of the North Shore Business Improvement Association (NSBIA) in Kamloops.  Working with the NSBIA board of directors, they visualized and launched the “We Are The North Shore” marketing campaign that has helped re-kindle community spirit.  The organizational also hosts the incredibly popular Overlanders Day summer family festival, which I was honoured to have played a small role in, with Steven and his team, at the inaugural event.

Many of you also know Steven as an active member of the BC Liberal Party, which honoured him with an outstanding volunteer award in 2014.  He has served as a campaign manager, provided strategic insights on numerous election campaigns, as well as serving as the Chief of Staff to several BC government ministries.  This is an individual who is passionate about public policy and democratic participation.

On the personal side, Steven is an active outdoorsman and says he enjoys our beautiful wilderness whenever he can. This he humbly attributes to growing up in 4H, the rodeo community  and working on his family’s ranch in Westsyde. He comes from 4 generations of cattle ranchers and farmers in the Kamloops area.

As nearly all reading this are aware, I am not a member of the BC Liberal Party, nor am I a supporter.  I do however appreciate the dedication that individuals, willing to serve, will offer to others ... no matter what their political stripe.

Last week I asked Steven if he would take a few moments, to share with me, his thoughts on public service.  I am delighted he agreed, and would like to share what he had to say with you.  Here then, is Steven Puhallo, with his thoughts on public service.

Public service is not an option for a healthy community or for a democratic society; it is a prerequisite. We hear a lot about ‘volunteering’ and ‘giving’ and how important it is. Public service can take many forms. From military service, where you join knowing it may cost you your life; to waving someone stuck in traffic through so that they can make their turn onto the next street; this is all doing something in the public good. These two examples bookend the different degrees of giving but all come from a want to do good.

But why is it so important?

Public service is the foundation of the freedoms we have and the lifestyles we enjoy.

These are things that now, sadly, we take for granted all too often. That we can travel freely, worship openly, love who we want, study what we want, work where we want and at any profession we seek to train for, live where we want, do what we want. These are the benefits of generations of good people seeking public service as their vocation.

Irrelevant of personal gain or favour, the men and women who have sacrificed their time to serve us, the public, are the foundation of our democratic and just society.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Twenty-seven percent of BCs Provincial Debt is at the mercy of whatever fluctuating interest rates end up at!

This weekend the BC Liberals are meeting in Vancouver, and by all accounts, it's living up to the expectations of a being a Rah-Rah-Rah cheerleading session, leading into next May's general election.  Much of the focus of course is on the economy, with a claim to be leading in Canada ... as well as a claim to be "Spending within our means".

On the claim of "Spending within our means" alone Christy Clark is proudly telling British Columbians that:

Alone in Canada, your BC Liberal government has achieved four
balanced budgets in a row, with a fifth on the way. That’s how BC has
maintained its highest-possible triple-AAA credit rating.

These economic achievements are important because of what they allow us
to do. Every penny we don't spend in interest charges can be invested in
British Columbians and the hospitals, schools, and services we all depend on.

And thanks to this fiscal discipline, BC is on track to be operating
debt-free as early as 2020, for the first time since 1975.

SO ... what is the difference between Debt and Deficit ... at least according the Ministry of Finance?    

Debtrepresents the money borrowed from lenders for a variety of reasons ...
the province pays interest for the use of the money it borrows and is obligated to repay it at a set date as determined by the terms of the debt instrument...

Deficitan excess of expense over revenue. The annual deficit is the amount by which the total annual operating expenses for the year exceed total annual revenues. The accumulated deficit is the sum of all deficits and surpluses incurred ... also represents the amount by which the total liabilities of the province exceed its total assets...

Ministry of Finance Provincial Debt Summary (First Quarter Results)

Estimated debt for 2016 / 17:   $67,690,000,000
  • Cost to service debt:  3.3 cents / dollar ($2.23 BILLION)

Estimated debt for 2017 / 18:   $69,886,000,000 (an increase of $2.2 BILLION)
  • Cost to service debt:  3.5 cents / dollar ($2.45 BILLION)

Estimated debt for 2018 / 19:   $71,891,000,000 (an increase of $2 BILLION)
  • Cost to service debt:  3.6 cents / dollar ($2.88 BILLION)

Why should these figures be of concern to us ... other than the fact debt continues to increase at an alarming rate?  Well the BC Provincial Debt Profile also shows us that 27% of our provincial debt is at a floating rate.

Twenty-seven percent of our debt is at the mercy of whatever fluctuating interest rates end up at! 

The good news or silver lining, is at least up to this point, is that the Bank of Canada left its benchmark overnight rate unchanged at 0.5 percent at its October 2016 meeting.  That, according to economists, shouldn't be cause to not be concerned about the future.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Will there rise a demand for a BC only party with NO affiliations (in name at least) to what's offered on the national level?

Until early in the week of October 23rd, a very interesting scenario, in BC politics, was being set up. 

What you say? 

Well it appeared, at least at first glance, that perhaps for the first time in decades, the people of British Columbia might actually have more than two viable parties from which to cast a ballot for.

Back in the early 1950s, British Columbians elected members to the Legislative Assembly from the Conservatives, Liberals, Social Credit, Labour and the NDP (1952 / 53).  Again, in 1972 and 1975, voters sent MLA's to Victoria from the Conservatives, Liberals, Social Credit and the NDP.

This time around, again at least until early last week when the BC Conservative Party bounced newly re-elected leader Dan Brooks from his post, it appeared that perhaps, we might again see members from four parties in the legislature.

And with good reason.

1)  The NDP are stubbornly disenfranchising one of their biggest blocks of support -- the private sector unions -- by being pig-headed in their refusal to support several large industrial projects that will provides tens of thousands of union members with long-term job projects

2)  Andrew Weaver is beating the drum for Green Party support all over metro Vancouver and the Island, and quickly generating new candidates in ridings all over the province.  It seems like many of these individuals, and even supporters of the party, are being siphoned away from the NDP due to a lack of consistent vision of environmental policy, and ideas, by the NDP.  Likely, and to a smaller extent, supporters are likely being gained from the BC Liberals.

3)  Small 'c' Conservatives have consistently held between 10 to 15% support for the past year now -- that despite on-going range wars, and shoot outs, in the party.  These supporters are true conservatives that desperately wanted a party to support; and with conservative ideals and principles that met with their beliefs.  Regrettably, with the final implosion of the party, those individuals would seem to have no where go when the next election rolls around in May 2017.

4)  BC Liberals.  This is the party that campaigns from the centre-right at election time ... and then governs from the centre-left for the next four years.  Why?  Well that's an easy one to answer.  With no real opposition from the Conservatives, they have been able to pull that vote to them at election time, by saying the right things, and then disappointing those same individuals once they are elected to power.  Sad thing is though, small 'c' conservatives have no other option.

Further to that is what I will call the "Media Party". 

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Shame On You ... Shame On You All!

The British Columbia Conservative Party is a political party in British Columbia. First elected as the government in 1903, the party went into decline after 1933. On July 18, 2013, John Cummins resigned from the position of party leader.  Dan Brooks was elected the new leader of the party on April 12, 2014, then resigned at the party's Annual General Meeting on February 20, 2016. Brooks was re-elected as leader at a leadership convention held on September 17, 2016.

The British Columbia Conservative party is leaderless again.  Dan Brooks says the party’s board has stripped him of his leadership on a technicality. 

“They don’t have a leader, they don’t have any money, they don’t have any idea of who could be the leader. The only thing that is going to save (them) is a miraculous emergence of a very high profile individual politician who thinks they can somehow save the BC Conservatives,” he says.

“They’re like praying mantises, they eat their leaders,” Brooks says of his former party.

Can a political party really be as ridiculous as the B.C. Conservative Party?
It’s hard to believe the Three Stooges party of provincial politics doesn’t already have its own reality show.

The B.C. Conservative Party’s slogan is “Bring common sense to Victoria.” A laudable initiative indeed, though it remains debatable whether this band of bumblers can even find their way to the provincial capital.

This week, the BC Conservative Party put a stake in its own heart.  Likely this is the final one which will be determined in the future to have been the last hurdle before the rattling of diseased lungs, and a weak heart, finally ended its misery.

Sadly, for small 'c' conservative voters in BC, those at the helm of the party, have stolen from British Columbians the right to have a REAL conservative voice in the legislature in Victoria.

Shame on you ... shame on you all!

In Kamloops, I'm Alan Forseth