I'm going to vote for the B.C. NDP, not because they're the perfect party, and not because I expect them to undo 16 years of B.C. Liberal rule anytime soon. I'm going to vote for them because they're a team of good-enough politicians who I expect to do the very best they can given the massive provincial debt they will inherit from the B.C. Liberals.
On Saturday, it felt good to be one of thousands marching in B.C. to challenge the misogynist rhetoric of a narcissistic president. But today, when I think about what is happening in our own province, I wonder when we will see thousands take to the streets to protest the egregious actions of the B.C. Liberal government and Christy Clark?
Last week the B.C. Liberal government approved the Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion Project. They have stated that Kinder Morgan has met their five conditions and have added 37 new conditions with their approval. From the National Energy Board hearings, to the recent to governmental approval, the process was problematic right from the start. It was nothing more than a public relations exercise.
The B.C. Liberals have been cutting funding and supports for public schools. This year alone the government asked school board to find $25 million in "administrative cuts," last year it was $29 million. So this one-time funding announcement is not what I consider to be an addition to funding, but rather a reduction in this year's cuts.
For a government that prides itself on holding the line on taxes and cutting red tape, the B.C. Liberals have sure blundered on their new off-road vehicle (ORV) tax and licensing scheme. Late last year, the government began forcing people -- mainly rural British Columbians -- to register their off-road vehicles, including snowmobiles, ATVs and dirt bikes.
When I first met Christy Clark, I remember thinking we had a lot in common. Journalism has changed a lot, but at the time, female reporters and anchors were unusual -- in fact, when I was the first female reporter at CKNW, some listeners complained: how could this woman report the news? Likewise, Christy was also a woman in an untraditional place: cabinet.
The BC Liberal government cites declining enrollment for both schools closures and constant cuts to overall funding. They blame school boards for mismanaging their money, constantly insisting they just need to cut the low hanging fruit. They blame teachers for asking for too much with their salaries and class size demands, despite the fact that we have some of the lowest paid teachers and highest class sizes in Canada.
I wish the Malahat First Nation luck in developing economic capacity in their community, but I will not support LNG in the Saanich Inlet. Furthermore, I do not support the "sellout" of British Columbia by the B.C. Liberals or inability of the B.C. NDP to take a clear position as they search for whatever position appears to be politically popular.