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Why BC needs a change of Government in this election

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Dr. Z. Essak, MD - Vancouver, BC - May 5, 2017.

Yes - this is an important election. Some people have already voted at early polls ahead of the general election day on Tuesday, May 9, 2017. Meanwhile, many are still undecided how they will vote.

After 16 years of the same party, the BC Liberals in office since 2001, there are compelling reasons for a change.

Just as we need a full spring cleaning of our homes from time to time, to breathe freshness into our lives, so must we clean house when it comes to government.

Premier Christy Clark tells us in the BC Liberal party platform: "The foundation of our plan is controlling government spending and cutting taxes for the middle class to create jobs and grow the economy. And it’s working."

Really? Is that what we've seen? Or is it more expensive government, more difficulties in meeting health care needs, less affordability, greater division on issues of environment and future growth?

With 16 years of BC Liberal rule, things in government have become an old worn groove. Attitudes and approaches become entrenched. Gloss rather than substance is the rule.

The recent gaff by Premier Christy Clark, when she dismissed a lady who approached to talk with her and later presumed the lady was an NDP plant, may be more revealing a sign of what some might call arrogance.

With 16 years of the same party in office attitudes like this, we know best, become more prevalent and pervade government bureaucracies and extensions of government.

Let us not forget the news reports, less than two months ago in the Globe and Mail, on the Elections B.C. probe into Liberal Party fund-raising.

“I can tell you these are potentially contraventions of the Elections Act,” said deputy chief electoral officer Nola Western. “It appears to be a systemic problem that needs to be addressed.” ...

Both registered lobbyists acknowledged to The Globe they were actually buying Liberal fundraising tickets on behalf of their clients and companies, then getting reimbursed, which is against the law.

“That’s an indirect political contribution and that’s not okay,” said Ms. Western. “You can only make a political contribution with your own money – and you can’t be reimbursed.”

Mr. Jiles is an independent consultant, paid by numerous clients to lobby politicians to make decisions favourable to those clients. Mr. Giraud is the top in-house lobbyist for Woodfibre LNG, an Indonesian firm building a controversial liquefied natural gas plant near Squamish, B.C., which has recently been given government approvals and tax breaks.

In truth, even with a new government in place, there must be real changes to how we do things. It is not up to government to impose their prescription from cabinet or the inner circle.

We need real engagement. Government listening to the people and people helping government achieve the vision. The future may look very different.

Our Canadian indigenous people are already engaged in economic initiatives with industries including building housing, providing training and skill development to their people, helping communities and fostering development of "green" building products. Government listening and working with these groups and others can be the stimulus for our future economic growth.

It is not a choice of one or the other, economic growth or environmental protection, both may be achievable working together.

It is also not a matter of spending more and more on health care when what we need is better spending in health care.

If we keep doing the same thing, we'll keep getting the same results.

On Tuesday May 9, we need a new BC Government to be elected. An NDP government, even if it is a minority, and more Green Party seats will provide an opportunity for change. A fresh look at what is happening in the BC Government, a fresh engagement with people and businesses.


Personal disclaimer: I am not a member of any political party and my past voting has varied across parties.

Web links

BC Liberals platform,

BC NDP platform,

BC Green platform,