“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

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!



WIKIPEDIA:
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.

GLOBAL NEWS:
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.

KAMLOOPS THIS WEEK:
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

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Practically speaking, manslaughter is when someone is doing something wrong, and someone else ends up dead as a result



Yesterday brought us more news on the Fentanyl front.  In a story from the Victoria Times Colonist, it was said that ... "B.C. Health Minister Terry Lake lies awake at night worrying and wondering why the federal government is allowing other countries to smuggle deadly fentanyl into our country.

There’s a headline in the Kamloops paper today,” Lake said in an interview last Friday. “A young man at a wedding using cocaine and he died. And this is a story we’ve heard again and again and again. That is not addiction. This is poisoning.”

I took a few minutes, this morning to head to my trusty research tool, Google, to check a few facts regarding Fentanyl, and came up with two things I wanted to share"

There were 555 apparent illicit drug overdose deaths from Jan to Sep 2016. This is a 60.9% increase over the number of death occurring during the same period in 2015 (345). Individuals aged 19-29 and 30-39 have accounted for the largest percentage of illicit drug overdose deaths from Jan – Sep 2016 (25.4% and 28.5%, respectively).

'An exceptionally high toll': Fentanyl, overdoses claim 488 in BC. 488 deaths represents a 61.6 per cent increase compared the same time period last year
the province's chief coroner is warning against complacency in tackling the fentanyl epidemic.  "There is little good news to share," Lisa Lapointe told a news conference held to announce the latest statistics on the toll of the opioid epidemic. According to the latest figures, there were 488 apparent illicit drug overdose deaths in B.C. from January to August 2016.


You read that right.  Five Hundred And Fifty Five deaths from drug overdoses in NINE MONTHS (a 61% increase) ... and look at the ages of the largest two groups.  Young adults ... and the second in a group that are likely married, and perhaps with young children.  No wonder Lisa Lapointe said, "There is little good news to share."

I've said this before, and I'll say it again, there is ONLY one solution that is going to get the makers, and distributors, of this deadly drug off the street.  CHARGE THEM WITH NO LESS THAN MANSLAUGHTER.   

And the law backs me up on this ... 100%.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

The NDP's Election Campaign? Spend Billions, Reduce Entry Level Minimum Pay Jobs, Kill New High Paying Union Jobs ... and ... a Sprinkle of Pixie Dust



The next provincial election in BC is just six and a half months away, and what we would expect from the NDP is definitely in their campaign plan.  But what's happening with an ally of theirs however ... the BC Federation of Labour? 

 

The labour union, which should be championing increased high paying union jobs ... you know the ones that support families (and that grows union membership) ... is instead fighting for higher minimum wages, and opposing resource development. 

 

In an August 31st story in the Georgia Straight the BC Federation's Irene Lanzinger said they're backing the New Democrats.  She stated; " ... the vote largely comes down to one issue: the minimum wage. “The NDP is the major provincial party that has committed to a $15 minimum wage and recognizes that that’s what people need [in order] to be above the poverty line.” 

 

Of course NDP leader John Horgan is ready to comply, as he has already stated that if his party forms the next government, it will raise the provinces minimum wage to $15 an hour ... in its first term.

 

Now don't get me wrong, no one should earn slave wages, however it should be understood by all, but the most left wing individual, that raising minimum wages (on what are generally entry level and / or part-time employment) KILLS JOBS.

 

Disagree if you want, but you'll be wrong!  It DOES happen every time.  Employers cut staff, they cut hours, and they find new ways to automate the businesses they run.

 

Now as to the kind of jobs you'd think the BC Federation of Labour would be fighting for, well their party of choice continues to be adamantly opposed.


 

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Dan Brooks hold, on the helm of the BC Conservative Party, seems very much in question



On October 2nd, I wrote a post entitled, "Where will those votes go? Most likely to the BC Liberals, while those individuals hold their noses to place their"X" on a ballot"




I started off by saying:

On September 27th, an online petition suddenly appeared on iPetitions.com. Individuals were asked to sign for the following reason:

QUOTE: "Complaint against Dan Brooks for deliberate violation of party constitution" (please join me in supporting this worthwhile cause)

It lasted for three days, and then was taken down.

What's interesting, and no longer available to be seen, was the comment that Dan Brooks had illegally used the membership list in his quest to regain the leadership of the BC Conservative Party, and some questions as to interference in the website of a fellow leadership candidate.

So, what happened to the petition?  Did the organizers have second thoughts,

or did the Board and Executive of the BC Conservative Party threaten some kind of legal action?  These kind of discussions are generally held in camera, so we will likely never know.....



Fast forward to yesterday, and all of sudden the phone lines lit up with people saying that one of two things had happened:
1)  Dan Brooks had resigned as the Leader of the BC Conservative Party;

2)  Dan Brooks had been let go by the BC Conservative Party as its leader



Speculation as to what it was all about was not being freely given, although Shane Woodford of CHNL 610 did speak with Dan Brooks. He posted on Twitter saying:



.@danbrooksbc tells me he is still #bccp leader BUT admits there is "some confusion" about leadership vote from some in party #bcpoli 1/2



2/2 @danbrooksbc wouldn't elaborate what the "confusion" is about ldrship vote saying "I don't think I am allowed to talk about it." #bcpoli



One of the things I questioned early yesterday after noon was why the Party was not issuing some kind of release as to what the situation was, knowing Dan's leadership was in question, and in doubt.

As I also mentioned early in the evening, I actually did receive a call, to my home, from an Executive member of the party informing Dan was indeed 'still' leader, however some questions had been raised about his campaign for the leadership last month.  This had resulted in the party obtaining legal council, and that that was where things were.  He did mention however, again, that Dan was still currently the leader.  He also indicated that a media release would be going out shortly.



Well today that did indeed go out, and this is what it said, under the official Conservative Party logo:


Sunday, October 16, 2016

BOTH the Ministry of Children and Family Development ... and some parents ... are failing miserably when it comes to applying those standards



Recently, two stories in the news, caught my attention.  One was in the Metro News, entitled Investing longer in teens leaving B.C. care would more than pay for itself, which stated:

You have to spend money to make money, and that adage may apply to foster care as much as it does to business, according to a new study. For the nearly one thousand 19-year-olds who “age out” of B.C. foster care system every year, an economic report released Monday has found that spending just $57 million in supporting those youth until age 24 would more than pay for itself — and potentially even save taxpayers nearly five times that amount.




The second was in the Tyee, entitled Life Skills Program for Former Foster Kids Seeks Boost, made a couple of comments I found both interesting, and sad:



... when life skills coach Linda Liss’s most motivated client, a young First Nations woman who had aged out of foster care, joined a gang, Liss knew it was the child welfare system, not the young woman, that had really failed.

... she has been working to get the post-foster care support program for young women off the ground.

... the society is pioneering a proposed four-year life skills “apprenticeship” program for young women between 19 and 29 with experience in government care ...

... in her experience both as a former foster parent, and as a life skills coach working with women from the child welfare system, she’s seen former foster kids fail again and again to make the transition to a healthy adulthood ...

... it is very well recognized that there is a deficit of services providing a continuum of care in the community...




NOW ... before anyone accuses me of bashing foster parents, let me say from personal experience, I have seen both side of the Foster Care System. And in spending time on the Foster Connections website, I believe the vast majority of Foster Parents come from a philosophy as expressed by a couple in the Kootenay's:



Fostering is a lifestyle choice that can change the outcome of future generations. We have the power to give children hope and encourage them on their journey. The immense support from our social workers and resources in the area proves to me that the goal for these children is to be the best that they can be.



So where do the problems begin?

"Hell even the SPCA has higher standards, and will outright refuse to allow you to have one of the animals in their care, unless you can meet specific standards"

Let me say I believe they come right from the start, with the Ministry of Children and Family Development, and the totally unworkable standards staff must work under.



The Child, Family and Community Service Act (CFCSA), inacted early in 1996, is the province’s legislation for child protection and for many of the support services used by families. (it begins on pg 62)



The Act states, and I quote, "Children are entitled to be protected from abuse, neglect and harm or threat of harm."  It further states that parents have the right and obligation to care for their children.  A few other points of note include:

• A family is the preferred environment for the care and upbringing of children, and the responsibility for the protection of children rests primarily with the parents.

• If, with available support services, a family can provide a safe and nurturing environment for a child, support services should be provided.



So what does that mean?  Well the first three principles concern society’s basic (minimum?) values regarding children and families.  They are that all children have the right to be safe and protected from harm ... and that parents have the right and obligation to care for their children



Let me quote further from Section 4 of Act (page 64), under the heading of Best Interests of the Child:

Saturday, October 15, 2016

THE SIDEWINDER – NO TIME FOR BLAME GAME



Today, we have a guest post from a Social Media friend of mine, Sandy Mcdougall. 

Recently, following the death of a friend's son due to an overdose of fentanyl, I questioned, “When will the hurting end?”

The answer to that question is still unclear but hope is emerging that our community cares and is willing to work together to bring to an end the epidemic of drug overdose deaths.

In the past, I have complained bitterly about drug use and drug trafficking in our downtown neighbourhood but the time has come to put an end to the blame game and join the growing number of dedicated people who are earnestly seeking ways to solve the myriad of problems involved in this terrible ongoing tragedy.

Nowhere has there been greater evidence of the commitment of those dedicated people than at the public forum on fentanyl held Wednesday night at Westview High School.

From community leaders to admitted drug users, hundreds of people crowded into the Westview gymnasium to hear messages of hope interlaced with desperate accounts of tragic losses resulting from fentanyl overdoses.

The forum was co-sponsored by Fraser Health, School District 42, Alouette Addictions, the RCMP, and the city of Maple Ridge with the Maple Ridge Fire Department and ambulance service also providing strong support.

I am certain that nobody in that crowded gymnasium had ever imagined in their worst nightmares that there would come a time in our rural community when the impact of drug overdoses would draw such huge numbers of people.

Like it was said in the Wizard of Oz, “You're not in Kansas anymore, Dorothy.”
 
Drawn to the forum out of curiosity and because of past tragedies involving drug addiction in my own family, I didn't expect to discover the depth of knowledge, expertise and empathy of the panel members. Their caring attitude goes well beyond professionalism.

Until I listened to the various panel members speak and later spoke to some of them, I was more than a bit cynical about any good resulting from the forum but that cynicism was replaced with respect and admiration for the positive approach of every speaker.

In a short conversation following the forum, my friend, who lost his son due to an overdose of fentanyl, said the forum was excellent and would help more people understand the nature and extent of the problem.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

How much more then, could we be thankful for?


The Vinyl Cafe's Stuart McLean

I wonder how many reading this, listen to the Vinyl Cafe, with Stuart McLean, Sundays at noon on CBC radio.  I love it ... and I especially love the stories he tells.  I have several of his books as well.  One I started reading just yesterday (and which I am already over halfway through) is called, "Vinyl Cafe Turns the Page".

This question is just for those who have heard Stuart McLean read a story aloud.  When you 'read' one of his books, is there a voice in your head that sounds like Stuart?  There is for me.

Meantime I digress.

In McLean's book the "Vinyl Cafe Turns the Page" is a story called "Stamps" ... it starts with the following paragraph:
Choosing a hero is a delicate business -- one that shouldn't be taken frivolously.  For the heroes we choose, whether real or imagined, whether from the world of fact or from the pages of fiction, will determine, to a greater or lesser degree, the things we do, and if we allow them the privilege, the lives that we lead.

Why am I telling you this? 

Saturday, October 8, 2016

That's nothing less than an abandonment of responsibility, by those who govern us!



The Armchair Mayor, Mel Rothenburger, gave me an interesting read this morning.  Entitled, "Thank you, Lord, for giving us more places to buy $5 coffee and $40 wine", it was a sarcastic, yet accurate, portrayal of what some at least find most important in their day to day lives. 

It got me to thinking about what really is important, at least to me, as an immediate need ... having a family doctor (our family has had four in the past 24 years ... all who have eventually moved from our city to greener pastures). 

Unless you've been hiding under a rock these past several years, we are all very well aware that nearly a third of the population of Kamloops residents is without a family doctor. The insanity of this situation ... the fact that it has been an ever growing epidemic for many many years  ... and that no provincial government (NDP or Liberal) has found a solution to this BC health care crisis ... is quite frankly, ridiculous!


BC Liberal Health Minister Terry Lake herding
Kamloops residents to the nearest walk-in clinic

TWENTY FIVE THOUSAND PEOPLE, in a population of 80,000 Kamloops residents, is without ready access to a medical professional, without having to line up, as others have said, like cattle, while desperately trying to get into a walk-in clinic.

That's nothing less than an abandonment of responsibility, by those who govern us!

As Castanet News announced this week:


A four-point action plan was announced Thursday by Health Minister Terry Lake to provide better access to care and attract more doctors to the city, including opening two new health centres.

Apparently the plan includes:

Taking immediate steps to increase capacity at walk-in clinics and doctors’ offices by using locum or temporary doctors during the next six months.
We DON'T NEED locums / temporary doctors.  We DO however need consistent medical care through a family doctor who will be able to know our medical history, so that we have continuity of care


Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Those seeking the leadership of the federal Conservative Party need heed them as well



Sometime back I saw two words linked together; they were, "Social Responsibility".  
One person commenting on this concept basically said that they don't belong in the small 'c' conservative world -- another said they mean nothing.  As a small 'c' conservative, I have to respectfully disagree.  Referencing the two words, they can, and should, mean the following:

SOCIAL ... relating to the way in which people in groups behave and interact ... relating to
human welfare (well-being / safety) and the organized welfare services that a community provides

RESPONSIBILITY ... the state, fact, or position of being accountable to somebody or for something ... somebody or something for which a person or organization is responsible

The words 'Social Responsibility' should NOT, in my opinion, be something negative which is attached only to the left side of the political spectrum.  Being socially  responsible is something we as individuals, and society, should be showing every day -- no matter what our political leanings may be.

That said, it should not blindly be given, as a one way street.  'Social Responsibility', or caring for one and other, is actually a two way street. 

We as a society are responsible to look after the well-being of those who need it, or are unable to provide it for themselves ... while those receiving it have a responsibility not to abuse it, and to pass it on when and if they are able.

As a society -- across the whole realm of the political spectrum -- we as individuals, and a society, are responsible to give a hand-up, but not a hand-out.

While speaking purely from a business aspect, Simon Mainwaring (award-winning branding consultant, advertising creative director, and social media specialist and blogger, stated that:

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Where will those votes go? Most likely to the BC Liberals, while those individuals hold their noses to place their "X" on a ballot



On September 27th, an online petition suddenly appeared on iPetitions.com. Individuals were asked to sign for the following reason:

QUOTE: "Complaint against Dan Brooks for deliberate violation of party constitution" (please join me in supporting this worthwhile cause)

It lasted for three days, and then was taken down.

What's interesting, and no longer available to be seen, was the comment that Dan Brooks had illegally used the membership list in his quest to regain the leadership of the BC Conservative Party, and some questions as to interference in the website of a fellow leadership candidate.

So, what happened to the petition?  Did the organizers have second thoughts,
or did the Board and Executive of the BC Conservative Party threaten some kind of legal action?  These kind of discussions are generally held in camera, so we will likely never know. 

Backing up a few days to September 25th, I posted the following on social media:

A new Board Executive ... and new Leader ... have now been elected for the BC Conservative Party. 

I'm interested in hearing the thoughts of individuals who are in the party, and those outside who are former members, on where YOU think the Party goes from here, and it's chances of success in 2017.

FYI, I am asking this as I will be doing a blog post in a few days and just wanted to hear your thoughts -- which will be used anonymously. Please send them by email to me at whatsnextbc@gmail.com. 

Thanks in advance ... alan 

Sean Smith, a former party member from Vancouver Island, responded quickly and stated:


Saturday, October 1, 2016

This is the same UN Security council that our selfie-indulging, and pampered, Prime Minter has practically groveled to be a part of. Shame on you Justin Trudeau!



A "UN" envoy in BC, studying housing here, says: "We really need to focus on accountability mechanisms. There just simply aren’t enough mechanisms worldwide dealing with the implementation of the right to housing and ensuring all levels of government remain accountable".

UN Special Rapporteur on Housing, Leilani Farha: ‘I’m in a rich country where I’m seeing gross inequality in homelessness and insufferable housing conditions.’

She went further, to say, " ... the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, under Article 11.1 and that basically says everyone has the right to an adequate standard of living, including adequate housing, food, and clothing.

What do I think?

Yah, about those accountability mechanisms ... and the rights (?) people should
Bombed out Syrian city of Aleppo
have. Maybe instead of taking a blind eye approach and twiddling there thumbs / wringing their hands, the UN could spend some of it's attention on goon countries that bomb and destroy innocent citizens and their homes ... and bomb and destroy their hospitals as well. All the while murdering thousands of innocent citizens. (see "Russian airstrikes killed 9,300 people in past year; including 906 children").