Monday, March 14, 2011

BC Liberals Latest Dream Team

Premier Christy Clark was sworn in today, March 14th, in Victoria as BC's 35th Premier.

Clark's New Dream Team Cabinet:
  • Kevin Falcon, Deputy Premier and Minister of Finance. (Ed: keep your enemies closer?)
  • Mary Polak, Minister of Aboriginal Relations.
  • Naomi Yamamoto, Minister of Advanced Education.
  • Don McRae, Minister of Agriculture.
  • Barry Penner, Attorney General.
  • Mary McNeil, Minister of Children and Family Development.
  • Ida Chong, Minister Community Sport and Cultural Development.
  • George Abbott, Minister of Education.
  • Rich Coleman, Minister of Energy and Mines and Minister Responsible for Housing.
  • Terry Lake, Minister of Environment.
  • Steve Thomson, Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations.
  • Mike de Jong, Minister of Health.
  • Pat Bell, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation.
  • Stephanie Cadieux, Minister of Labour, Citizens Services and Open Government.
  • Shirley Bond, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General.
  • Harry Bloy, Minister of Social Development and Minister Responsible for Multiculturalism.
  • Blair Lekstom, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure.
  • Rich Coleman will serve as the Government House Leader.
  • Terry Lake will be the deputy Government House Leader.
  • Ben Stewart will be the Government whip.
Other changes the Sun points out:
  • "Five members of the last cabinet are gone: Colin Hansen, Murray Coell, Moira Stilwell, John Yap and Margaret MacDiarmid."
  • Clark brought energy, mines together into one portfolio.
  • She linked forestry, lands and natural resource operations under its own ministry.
  • Created a new ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation.
  • New ministry of Labour, Citizens’ services and Open Government
Some choices quotes:

"Now it’s time for our government to reach out to those families for whom the great promise of British Columbia may have remained elusive. and that works starts now.”

She promised “real and tangible” steps in coming weeks to help families, and said government will be more open and explain its decisions to British Columbians.

New Premier Names Her Cabinet
CBC News, March 14th, 2011.

Clark cut the size of cabinet from 23 to 18, including herself, meaning a large number former premier Gordon Campbell's ministers will now be sitting on the backbenches of the legislature.

Clark also named another 10 MLAs as parliamentary secretaries to work with ministers to focus on key initiatives of government.

Amongst those who did not get a seat at the cabinet table were former deputy premeir and finance minister Colin Hansen, and Kevin Krueger.


Moira Stilwel Sidelined in Christy Clark's Cabinet, Sources Say

Gary Mason & Ian Bailey, Globe & Mail, March 14, 2011.


Dr. Stilwell, a former cabinet minister, will not be one of Ms. Clark’s ministers. Instead, she will be named parliamentary secretary in charge of innovation. She will have a reporting relationship with the minister in charge of a newly-created portfolio for jobs.

Dr. Stilwell’s demotion is surprising. A physician trained in nuclear medicine, Dr. Stilwell is one of the brightest minds in the Liberal caucus.

She was one of Mr. Campbell’s must trustworthy ministers and performed well in colleges and regional economic development, the last post she held before resigning to run for the Liberal leadership. But it was during her unlikely bid for the leadership that Dr. Stilwell shone, impressing many with her thoughtful and articulate responses on a range of policy topics.

As the ink dries on the new government letterheads, we all have no choice but to wait and see how all of this is going to play out for BC citizens.

Next up - when & where will Premier Clark run in a by-election and who will run against her from the NDP?

Friday, February 11, 2011

BC Liberals Bring the Blood Sport of Politics to a New Height

Oh boy, they weren't kidding when they said politics is a blood sport. The daggers are out, well, when they aren't being plunged into each others' backs during the leadership contests with both the BC Liberals and BC NDP.

This Facebook page has started up to Celebrate Gordon Campbell's last day as Premier - February 26th.

Here's some fun quotes as the race closes in to a finish.

From George Abbott on Christy Clark:

"Clark's HST flip-flop proves she has no credible plan for B.C.," read his press release. "On this significant issue, the public wants certainty and clarity, not more doublespeak and misdirection." Getting more biting in the media interviews, Abbott accused her of "adopting the Kama Sutra of HST positions." (Ed: AWESOME line!).

Her subsequent preference for tying health care funding to the rate of economic growth brought another blast from Ungentle George: "Unrealistic and oversimplified."

Nor was he even slightly amused at the Clark campaign prank of signing up a cat as a party member: "While Ms. Clark's campaign may consider this a joke, it is actually an example of outright fraud."

The summing up: "More and more it is abundantly clear that Ms. Clark's positions are simply not credible, and it shows that she has no real plan for our province, our economy, or our families."

"Ms. Clark's past actions do little to inspire confidence in her ability to unify the party. She walked away from government seven years ago, leaving the party to rebuild on its own, and only returned when there was the opportunity to be in charge. Today, she will not even commit to running as a B.C. Liberal MLA unless she gets to be premier."

From Vaughan Palmer

Ms. Clark has given me such a plethora of issues to work with,” Mr. Abbott, who resigned as education minister to seek his party’s leadership, said Thursday. “If anybody thinks I should give a free ticket to Christy for whatever reason, they’re wrong. Whatever Christy says is fair game for debate, and that’s what I intend to do.”

He said he has taken Kevin Falcon, another of the six B.C. Liberal leadership candidates, to task for suggesting merit pay for teachers.
(Ian Bailey).

Other campaign news:

Leadership candidate George Abbott released a statement Saturday saying a vendor that works for his campaign created the website that poked fun at contender Christy Clark's campaign upon discovering that a cat owned by someone on her team received a party membership card.

Olympia Marie Wawryk, was signed up as a member in December. If her membership had gone unchallenged, the cat would have been eligible to cast a ballot in the party’s Feb. 26 leadership vote. And because the vote is being conducted by telephone and over the Internet, the party may never have known that Olympia is a cat. Kristy Wawryk, a senior volunteer in the Clark leadership campaign, is Olympia’s owner. Initially, Ms. Wawryk identified Olympia as a great-aunt, but the Clark campaign later said the cat had been signed up as a prank...
(Brenda Bouw and Justine Hunter).

On Tuesday, Kevin Falcon admitted a backer had signed up members of the Kamloops Blazers hockey team without their knowledge.

"It's wrong and I don't like it at all. My father was a stretcher-bearer at D-Day. I take democracy very seriously and it really bugs me that people fool around with something so important," Krueger said.

(CBC News).

Falcon's campaign manager, Norman Stowe, has revealed a Falcon supporter signed up several members of the Kamloops Blazers junior hockey team.

Problem is, the players didn't know anything about it.

(CBC News)

Special mention for Mike Smyth's excellent blog title:
Two minutes for Unsportsmanlike sign up!

Runner up to Rod Mickleburgh:

How to Win Friends (not really) and Influence People (a little)

You cheat. No, you cheat. You’re full of it. No, you are. You signed up a cat. No, I didn’t. Okay, I did, but you made fun of it. Et cetera. Welcome to the latest political soap opera: As the Fur Flies.

Which, among the following, is worst?

1. Admitting that you signed up a cat

2. Denying that you signed up a cat.

3. Registering members of a losing Kamloops hockey team, including a player named Dalibor Bortnak, without their knowledge.

4. Making a series of lame jokes about option 3, such as “two minutes for failing to cross-check” and “two minutes for not looking too good.”


Mike de Jong has become the first of the BC Liberal leadership contenders to disclose the total of donations to his campaign.

The spending limit for candidates in the leadership race is $450,000. Mr. de Jong says he has received $266,450 in donations.

In a statement Friday, the former attorney-general said his donations came from 181 individuals and organizations.

(Ian Bailey)

I guess there won't be too many Valentine cards changing hands amongst the candidates on Monday.

Keep the fun times rolling candidates, you're amusing all of Canada with your antics and we can all use some laughs about now.

Thursday, February 03, 2011

Ain't that the Scary Liberal Truth: Dogs Over Babies

We here at BC Liberals Suck love animals as much as the next person. The sled dog cull is an atrocity and we hope that those responsible face animal cruelty and criminal charges. But when the BC Liberals can ignore the mounting death toll from BC's child welfare system and report after report about the devastating conditions so many of the most vulnerable kids face in their struggle to survive it's just too much.

21 babies who might still be here were less important to the BC Liberal regime that rewarding their senior bureaucrats with "living allowances" and bonuses for keeping staffing levels low and meeting targets out of the Premier's office.

Now they turn around and launch a task force & inquiry when this administration created the conditions where BC has led child poverty in Canada for seven years in a row and the Minister in charge of Children & Families publically states BC doesn't need a poverty reduction plan. This kind of structural violence and negligence towards children protected under the Charter of Rights & Freedoms is what should be under scrutiny and legally actionable.

But some tough talk is reserved for us, as citizens too.
Where are the cries about the dead babies, casualties and collateral damage of a government that set up these conditions?
Where is the inquiry into the children who have died in the care & custody of MCFD/the BC government?
Where is the inquiry into dead children and youth who have been involved with MCFD, or trying to get services from them? Who weren't taken into care & died?
Where is the inquiry into the children who have been critically injured or died in placements that MCFD put them into? Or in Child in Home of Relative homes?

Every single one of us should write our MLA and tell them we won't stand for BC's kids to be treated this way anymore and that unless there is action, they've lost our vote.

Find your MLA here and show that BC's kids mean at least as much as dogs.

New inquiry raises more questions

Charmaine de Silva | Email news tips to

In light of the creation of the task force, some are asking...does the Province care more about dead dogs than dead babies?

The BC NDP's critic for Children and Families, Maurine Karagianis, says its great that the Province has moved quickly to launch the task force into the slaughter of dead dogs near Whistler.

But she has some questions for the Premier, "I'm curious why the Province hasn't taken action yet on the request by the Children's Representative to set up a legislative process for child poverty, and for resources to deal with child death reviews."

Karagianis says the Government's inaction is shameful.

Just last week BC's Child and Youth representative renewed calls for a poverty reduction plan.