Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Is Christy Clark going through the motions, or movements, of transferring power? Has she consulted the BCUC?

CBC: Beginning of the End for Christy Clark

Those closest to the premier emphasize that she is not gearing up for a final fight, that her decision to stay on and face a vote in the legislature is based on her desire to see any transfer of power happen through a democratic process.

"She has every right to go through the motions she has outlined," said former Liberal strategist Alise Mills.

Reminds us of a joke from the sixties:

Did you hear about the gal who fell into a cesspool?

She didn't know how to swim but She went through all the movements.

what's the difference  ..... Movement is booming, motion is on a steady decline

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

George Washington takes second in 'sleeping places' category because 'Jamaican' born Donald Trump slept here FIRST

Its conceivable that Donald Trump's parents conceived their offspring ON Jamaica's soil.

George Washington:
Driven by duty to present himself to the citizens of the shaky new union, he spent the night in so many inns and private houses that “George Washington Slept Here” became a real estate cliché, as well as the title of a clunky 1940 stage (and screen) comedy by Kaufman and Hart. Our object at hand was not one of the many beds Washington slept on while upon his travels. It is rather his first ‘best bed,' as a particularly fine bed was then described, inherited, like Mount Vernon itself, from his half-brother Lawrence. - Smithsonian Magazine

 Whereas the 45th President of the United States of America, Donald Trump?

First night sleep .....

Monday, May 29, 2017

BC Tolling of bridges, not tunnels, is based on 'significant increases in capacity'. Port Mann Bridge has not had significant increases, eh

If the public is still wondering why Premier Christy Clark chose to build a bridge to replace the George Massey Tunnel rather than twinning the existing tunnel, look no further that the confining language written by Premier Gordon Campbell from .....
April 26,  2003

Why build a bridge from Richmond to Vancouver when the latter is incapable of handling existing volumes of motor vehicles?

And then ask the question why wasn't Kelowna's bridge not included in the tolling regime of the BC Liberals.  Vote buying? 

This policy is intended to be FAIR and EQUITABLE to ALL British Columbians and APPLIED ACROSS the province.

British Columbia.
 Ministry of Transportation
  Open Cabinet Submission:

Open Cabinet Submission: Highway Tolling Policy for Decision


The province has recognized the need to increase investment in transportation infrastructure.  It has been determined that significant highway capacity increases can be delivered through public-private partnerships that will entail the levying of tolls.

The Transportation Investment Act, passed in the Fall 2002 session of the Legislature, is enabling legislation that permits the province to enter into these partnerships.  A tolling policy is required to establish where,  when and how tolls will be instituted and how various concerns arising out of the use of tolling will be addressed.  This policy is intended to be FAIR and EQUITABLE to ALL British Columbians and APPLIED ACROSS the province.  etc. ......

Guidelines for Tolling - Policy Paper

2. Guideline for Tolling

In some cases, tolling of users will provide the most appropriate means for recovering some or all of the costs of a significant investment in new highway infrastructure. In order to provide for the use of tolls, the government has developed a number of guiding principles. 

2.1 Only major projects that result in significant increases in capacity will be subject to tolling. 

Tolls should only be applied to offset cost for significant investments that primarily expand or extend highway capacity. NEW roadways, NEW bridges, and major highway upgrades, such as four-laning of a two lane highway for a substantial distance, would be subject to tolling.  etc.
Small improvements, such as passing lanes, and improvements whose primary purpose is to address safety and reliability concers, such as realignments, would NOT by subject to tolling. In some cases, a substantial portion of the cost of a major highway upgrade will be for significant safety and reliability requirements as well as the need to expand or extend highway capacity. 
 In some circumstances, the cost of the safety and reliability improvements may be funded by government, with tolls recovering ONLY the costs related to the increase in capacity.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Background on the Real-990-year-Deal that CNR got for bankrolling the BC Liberals selling off BC Rail

BC Liberal government received $1 Billion dollars for selling off our railway to CNR in 2004.

Do you have ANY idea on what was given to CNR on a silver platter, or how much money the BC Liberal Party has received in 'donations' from CNR's backers?

Pacific Great Eastern Railway Lands: Survey of Resources.
Report and Maps


Just one section ....

Maps. Part 1:

Map Title tif File jpeg File
No. 1 British Columbia key map. Aid blocks outlined in colour LL7_tif_119.50 MB LL7_jpeg_1.03 MB
No. 2 Key map. Blocks and sectional sheets outlined in colour LL8_tif_116.47 MB LL8_jpeg_2.89 MB
No. 3 Missing No file No file
No. 4 Peace River Aid Block. Triangulation control LL9_tif_120.01 MB LL9_jpeg_2.52 MB
No. 5 Southern blocks. Physical LL6_tif_119.43 MB LL6_jpeg_3.01 MB
No. 6 Peace River Block. Physical LL5_tif_121.11 MB LL5_jpeg_3.01 MB
No. 7 Southern blocks. Agriculture LL4_tif_121.94 MB LL4_jpeg_2.95 MB
No. 8 Peace River Block. Agriculture LL3_tif_120.06 MB LL3_jpeg_2.77 MB
No. 9 Southern blocks. Forest LL1_tif_116.50 MB LL1_jpeg_3.15 MB 
No. 10 Peace River Block. Forest LL2_tif_120.56 MB LL2_jpeg_3.00 MB
No. 11 Missing No file No file
No. 12 Missing No file No file
No. 13 Peace River Block. Minerals LL10_tif_121.20 MB LL10_jpeg_3.00 MB
No. 14 Southern blocks. Water LL12_tif_115.81 MB LL12_jpeg_4.57 MB
No. 15 Peace River Block. Water LL13_tif_114.30 MB LL13_jpeg_4.28 MB
No. 16 East Cariboo Block LL14_tif_223.70 MB LL14_jpeg_4.16 MB
No. 17 West Cariboo Block No file No file
No. 18 West Lillooet Block LL15_tif_260.27 MB LL15_jpeg_3.23 MB
No. 19 Peace River Block LL16_tif_577.40 MB LL16_jpeg_3.99 MB
No. 20 Rocky Mountain Canyon, Peace River Block LL11_tif_116.35 MB LL11_jpeg_4.12 MB


No. 20 Rocky Mountain Canyon, Hudson Hope, Site C
According to the map above, Hudson Hope WAS in Alberta ........

Head of Steamboat Navigation WAS Fort St. John

Steamboat Navigation BBC Post

Friday, May 26, 2017

293 Appointees of Premier Christy Clark received $67,403,869 in Compensation ... per year

Premier Christy Clark's Hired hands are Compensated, handsomely

Crown Corporations and Agencies:
Sorted by the highest compensations, over $400,000 per year, there are 17 out of  293
the 17 received   $7,564,905 


Public Sector Employers' Council Secretariat

2015 - 2016 Executive Compensation Disclosure

Crown Corporations and Agencies

B.C.’s Crown corporations and Agencies provide many different services to the public. In some cases they are large commercial operations such as, BC Hydro and ICBC, in other cases they are a means to provide cost-effective services to citizens such as, BC Housing. Their executives come from varied professional backgrounds, but in most cases their relevant labour markets are similar organizations in the public and private sector in Canada.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

BC Liberal Politics: It's not about campaign fund raising or conflict of Interest. It's really about Patronage and Pornography

BC Hydro's Jack Weisgerber

Media (Journalist) Kim Emerson

BC  Legislative Library:

Opinion of the Commissioner of Conflict of Interest.

E.N. (Ted) Hughes, Q.C.
In the Matter of Applications by Jack Weisgerber, Member of the Legislative Assembly for Peace River South, and Kim Emerson with respect to alleged contravention of provisions of the Members' Conflict of Interest Act By the Honourable Harcourt, Member of the Legislative Assembly for Vancouver-Mount Pleasant.

City of Victoria, Province of British Columbia, April 17, 1995
Page 4 of 43
Members' Conflict of Interest Act   Section 15(1) and (1.1)

Sections 2(1) & 2.1 read:

For the purpose of the Act, a member has a conflict of interest when the member exercises an official power or performs an official duty or function in the execution of his or her office and at the same time knows that in the performance of the duty or function or in the exercise of the power there is the opportunity to further his or her private interest.

For the purpose of this Act, a member has an apparent conflict of interest where there is a reasonable perception, which a reasonably well informed person could properly have, that the member's ability to exercise an official power or perform an official function must have been affected by his or her private interest.

A member shall not exercise an official power or perform an official duty or function if the member has a conflict of interest or an apparent conflict of interest.

It is worth noting that the only place that the Legislature has expressly proscribed the awarding or approving of contracts is in section 7 of the Act which pertains to contracts with former members of the Executive Council and former parliamentary secretaries.  This may in fact be a provision that is more concerned with "patronage" than with conflict of interest.  This raises the question of what, if any, relationship there is between patronage and conflict of interest.  Given the many comments that have been made, in the media and in the House about the issue of patronage, I believe it is appropriate that I expound briefly on it.

I do so in the knowledge, as do Professors Langford and Tupper in their recent text Corruption, Character and Conduct at p. 1, that "Government ethics is an area where difficult questions come easier than convincing answers."  This is particularly the case when it comes to attempting to understand the role of patronage in a political system which proscribes apparent conflicts of interest.

Patronage has been described in many different ways but one common way offered by Professor Ian Stewart in Despoiling the Public Sector (chapter 5 in Langford and Tupper at p. 92) is "the giving of employment, grants, contracts and other government perquisites on the basis of party affiliation."  There may be other definitions that carry with them more negative connotations.  Professor Norman Ward in a paper entitled Patronage: Gentle Reflections (1987) 22 J. of Canadian Studies  177 said that it is "hard to consider 'patronage and corruption' as synonymous.  They can be: but as parts of working government they need not be and frequently are not."

Jeffrey Simpson in his books Spoils of Power (1988 at p. 6) likewise reveals the many sides of patronage.  He likens it to the "... pornography of politics, enticing to some, repulsive to others...".  He says that '... patronage is endemic to organized human society because everyone naturally prefers and trust the company of friends to that of adversaries.  The problem for political practitioners and observers has always been finding the point at which preference injures the public interest, a shifting uncertain notion.'

Nevertheless, patronage has been in fact of political life in Canada since Confederation; and there are many well respected academics who would defend many forms of patronage as a legitimate force in that political life.

As Professor Ward notes in the same paper:
In the Confederation period and the following decades patronage was considered the only possible tool through which responsible government could be carried on: if minister could not have the final word in appointments and contracts, how could they reasonably be held responsible for anything?  The Bad Things then were not patronage as such, but ELECTORAL CORRUPTION  and, however contracts were let, the providing of shoddy goods and service to the government.  (emphasis added)

Jeffrey Simpson who says in his book that he does not find patronage "terribly tasteful" nevertheless has described it as "ubiquitous" and admits to being "... more sanguine about its more benign forms such as those involving appointments".  He concludes at p.4

Patronage remains with us and always will as long as governing means making choices and exercising discretion.  An alert, well informed public is the best check I can think of against the abuses of patronage.

Further reading:

The Star   2014

Limits To The Politics Of Patronage

Further further reading:  Members' Conflict of Interest

Insider information

3.  A member shall not use information that is gained in the execution of his or her office and is not available to the general public to further or seek to further the member's private interest.
Historical Note(s): 1990-54-3.


4.  A member shall not use his or her office to seek to influence a decision, to be made by another person, to further the member's private interest.
Historical Note(s): 1990-54-4.

That last item???  is that ... 'another person' ... be Andrew Weaver

BC Legislative Library: "Site C Employment by the Month reporting": FULL STOP on data on the last day of 2016

Site C employment Data for 2017 is nonexistent at BC Legislative Library:

B.C. Hydro. Site C Clean Energy Project
Site C Employment by Month



Another Search in BC Legislative Library:    Site C employment by month

Search in Google:  Site C employment by month    --- now this is more like it.


Monday, May 15, 2017

If British Columbians want impartiality in the Legislature, a GREEN should be the SPEAKER

We've all seen the bickering during Question Period whereby the Opposition asks a direct question and the Government responds by evading answers but proceeds to offer the benefits on a totally different topic which results in much yelling on both sides of the House.

If the MLAs were to elect a Speaker from the GREEN Party, with the Deputy Speaker coming from the Opposition, then one could only hope that Question Period would lead voters to see, and hear, questions being asked on behalf of voters, resulting in direct Answers to direct questions instead of the constant political spin doctoring that has taken place for the past 16 years.

eg.  Premier Gordon Campbell promised that BC Rail was not for sale but upon forming his Government he immediately, along with Deputy Premier Christy Clark, sold/leased our railway to CNR for 990 years without a single toll being collected on every bridge that rail cars rolled across.

The Speaker as Presiding Officer

Balancing the right of the majority to conduct business with the right of the minority to be heard is one of the Speaker's most important responsibilities.

The primary role of the opposition is to question government actions and present alternatives to government positions. While this kind of adversarial system is a cornerstone of democracy, debates can, like a hockey game, sometimes get heated. The Speaker serves as a very necessary referee, ensuring fair play by all MLAs.

It is the Speaker's job to enforce the Standing Orders — the rules of parliamentary procedure adopted by the Legislative Assembly, which are designed to make sure that debates in the Chamber are properly carried out and that all MLAs have the opportunity to participate.

These rules require all MLAs to show respect for the Speaker and for each other. For example, members must not speak unless "recognized" (allowed to speak) by the Speaker and must not interrupt when the Speaker is speaking.

In addition, to discourage personal attacks, MLAs must address the Legislative Assembly through the Speaker at all times, rather than addressing each other directly. When referring to one another, they must use the name of an MLA's constituency (e.g., "the honourable member for Victoria–Beacon Hill") rather than the MLA's actual name.

This helps maintain order and decorum in the Legislative Assembly. In a spirited debate, the Speaker can act as a buffer between members, and heated words may be less inflammatory when directed through the Speaker. The Legislative Assembly is a forum for robust debate, not merely a polite debating society.

If an MLA does not obey the rules and makes inappropriate or discourteous remarks, the Speaker will ask the member to withdraw those remarks. If the member does not comply with the Speaker's instructions, the Speaker has the power to order the MLA to withdraw from the Chamber for the day. For more serious offences, the Speaker "names" the MLA, which means the MLA may be suspended from the Legislative Assembly without pay for anywhere from one to 15 days.

If the MLA refuses to leave the Chamber as requested, the Speaker may ask the Sergeant-at-Arms to remove the member. In such a case, the offending member may be suspended for the balance of the session.

Friday, May 12, 2017

Province of British Columbia Budgets - 1908 to 2017

If you're looking for how the Province's DEBT statistics have developed over the last 109 years .... , correction, over the last 16 years ....

Why is it that for all of the BC Liberals invoking WAC Bennett's and Bill Bennett's names, skipping Brad Bennett (not a Premier), they are constantly linked to the need of developing Site C by bankrupting BC Hydro?

WAC Bennett, Premier  1962
... The new public instrumentality will prove of much benefit as a self-supporting agency.  Economies have already been achieved in over-all direct operation costs by greater internal efficiency.  The principal saving to the company from Crown ownership is freedom from corporation tax, which will result in a reduction in residential rates early in the next fiscal year. ....
Page 35 of 63


Budget and Fiscal Plan 2017/18-2019/20

Budget Speech
Budget Highlights
News Releases - B.C.'s 5th-consecutive balanced budget delivers the dividend of a strong economy
Backgrounder - MSP Premiums Reduced by 50% for twom million British Columbians
Backgrounder - Budget 2017 helps businesses create jobs, grow and compete
Backgrounder - Nearly $3 Billion worth of investments in priority areas
Backgrounder - Fiscal Plan 2017/18 – 2019/20


2017 - February

2016 - February
2015 - February
2014 - February

2013 - June
2013 - February
2012 - February
2011 - May
2011 - February
2010 - March
2009 - September
2009 - February
2008 - February
2007 - February
2006 - February
2005 - September
2005 - February
British Columbia. Ministry of Finance and Corporate Relations
British Columbia. Dept. of Finance
Budget Speech (British Columbia)

1973   Excerpts
1972   Highlights

1955   Supplement
1951 - Lacks Province of British Columbia Comparison of Revenue Chart

1928 - Lacks Anaylsis of Provincial Revenue Chart


Trump's take on the BC softwood industry ...... 1908
Page 17 of 25
Western Canada Lumberman:
"Whatever is in the best interest of the lumber business is in the best interests of British Columbia; for the lumber industry is the backbone of the Province.  When lumbering languishes, trade and commerce languish, and in all times of lumber activity and good prices, the entire industrial and business world of British Columbia wakes up.  There is but one thing to guard against, that is over-speculation in timber.  If the laws can be changed to the advantage of timber owners and millmen, and the country safeguarded against the timber speculator, then let them be changed."

To put that into 2017 language ....

Western Canada Oil and Gas Man - Rich Coalman:
"There is but one thing to guard against, that is over-speculation in LNG.  If the laws can be changed to the advantage of Petroleum Owners and Frackermen, and the country safeguarded against the LNG speculator, then let them be changed."

Thursday, May 11, 2017

What is the protocol to transition to a New, amalgamated (minority), government?

With the BC Liberals having been in power since 2001, the BC Legislature officers haven't provided the public a clue, a link, as to how to proceed with the transition on their website.

How, or more to the point, when does Christy Clark hire a workforce littered with the likes of  George Gretes to DELETE, DELETE, DELETE

Will the sealed Cabinet contracts giving away our resources, with little in revenues contributing to the BC Treasury, still be under lock and key until 100 years has passed? 

Andrew Weaver, no matter which party he decides to join, will be privy to the documents as a Minister of the Environment?

Just asking.

Does anyone have other questions?
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Friday, May 5, 2017

The Port Mann Bridge was doomed to fail financially because ....? of the lack of traffic. 2009 report

The BC Liberals just can't apologize straight out for placing tolls on Metro Vancouver bridges, with the one exception, this election promise of a $500 ceiling.


  "The folly of being seduced by availability payment mechanisms for PPP roads"

September 23, 2009

Robert Bain: In support of user-paid tolls

The Macquarie Infrastructure Group (MIG) labels itself "one of the largest private developers of toll roads in the world", a claim substantiated by the fact that this particular infrastructure fund operates nine separate assets in six different countries.  One of these assets alone is a 2,200km toll road network in France.

However, MIG's recently released full-year financial results made for sobering reading.  Valuation write-downs were this year's theme.  Westlink M7 (Australia) down from A$802m (US $668m) in 2008 to A$359m in 2009; Chicago's Skyway and the Indiana Toll Road (USA) down from A$236m to A$148m and A$344m to A$98m respectively; while the UK's M5 Toll skydived from A$2.2b to A$412m.

The whole portfolio suffered a 40% drop in assets value, crashing from A$8.6b to A$5.1b in just one year.
The reason?

Traffic performance that failed to match expectations features large.

Macquarie is not the only toll road operator to be suffering in the current climate.  But before we declare that the model is broken, as some would have us believe, let's be very clear about which model we're referring to. 
Commentators have labelled the phenomenon 'silting-up'.  That's what happens when you buy infrastructure, such as roads, on the government's credit card, rather than exploring what consumers might actually be willing to pay for premium facilities like user-paid toll roads.


Google Search Criteria:  Macquarie, Laila Yuile, Sea to Sky, Port Mann Bridge


Journal of Commerce 2012:
Premier Gordon Campbell unveiled plans for a new 10-lane superbridge on Feb 4, 2009.

... The government initially reached an agreement-in-principle with Connect BC Development Group for a public-private partnership (P3) for the construction of the new bridge on Jan. 28, 2009.

However, the consortium, which included Macquarie Group, Transtoll Inc., Peter Kiewit Sons Co. and Flatiron Constructors Canada Limited, couldn’t get financing.

When negotiations with MacQuarie collapsed, the government changed the procurement process from a P3 to the traditional design and build model.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Christy Clark uses the word 'NOPE' instead of 'NO'? What is she really saying?

UPDATE: Vaughn Palmer's May 4th rendition of No .. Nope not included in QUOTE

Christy Clark's used 'Nope' to answer direct questions from the Vancouver and Province Editorial Board instead of a flat out No.   What's the difference between “nope” and “no”?


You don't think I'm handsome.
If Christy responds "no" it's because she is disagreeing with the statement - she actually does think the speaker is handsome.

If Christy responds "nope" it's because she agrees with the implication - she really does not think the speaker is handsome.

It's a subtle difference, but one to note.

Vancouver Sun / the Province
Christy Clark had left the door open when pressed by media. “VAT, what do you mean by that?” she asked a reporter. “Oh, do you mean the tax that was recommended by the tax competitiveness commission? We’ve said we’re going to talk about all the things they’ve recommended. But we will not end up anywhere that looks like an HST.”

Clark told the editorial boards she meant to say she’s willing to talk to the business community about other reforms.

“In the past they’ve said we should go back to the HST. Nope. Now they are saying they want to go to a VAT, and I’m saying nope. That doesn’t mean we rule out more tax competitiveness.

Google Search Criteria: Christy Clark, nope

Vaughn Palmer

.... No less surprising is that it took several days of denials and clarifications before Clark and the Liberals mustered a total, unmistakable disavowal.

No to a HST, no to a value added tax,” she told the editorial boards of The Vancouver Sun and Province this week, adding, lest there be any doubt, that neither would a re-elected Liberal government add restaurant meals, haircuts and other services to the base for the provincial sales tax.

Any sales tax reform would be crafted to make the provincial tax regime more competitive with the growing challenge from south of the border, she said. ....