"The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity. The fears are paper tigers. You can do anything you decide to do. You can act to change and control your life; and the procedure. The process is it's own reward."

~~ Amelia Earhart

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Doug Donaldson given nod to take over as Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations, and Rural Development



Good morning ... (or afternoon ... or evening -- depending on what time you are reading this. 



Today's post is a mix of my own thoughts ... a BC government News release ... and background information on one of John Horgan's new Cabinet Ministers ... Doug Donaldson (Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations, and Rural Development).





BC GOVERNMENT NEWS:  Office of the Premier



Premier John Horgan announced his new cabinet today to build a better B.C. and get results for people.



Our government will offer families relief from high costs and fees, strengthen services like health care and education, and create good jobs and economic opportunity across B.C.,” said Premier John Horgan.



We will put people at the heart of everything we do. And we’ll work hard to deliver on our commitments to British Columbians.”



The new cabinet is made up of 20 ministers and two ministers of state. In addition, six MLAs have been named as parliamentary secretaries. Premier Horgan’s cabinet is the first in B.C. history to achieve gender parity, with 10 women named to cabinet and one named minister of state.



Ministerial portfolios reflect the government’s focus on making life better for people including a stand-alone Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions, a Minister of State for Child Care, and a Minister for Social Development and Poverty Reduction. The government is also putting a special focus on jobs and opportunity in B.C.’s tech sector.



The government includes a mix of new and experienced MLAs and also includes:

  • Four ministers and two parliamentary secretaries aged 40 and under 
  • 10 ministers and parliamentary secretaries who identify as a visible minority
  • The first First Nations woman appointed to cabinet



Starting today, we will deliver a government that works for people. We’re going to work hard every day to build a better B.C.,” said Horgan. 



MEMBERS OF THE CABINET:

  • Premier – Hon. John Horgan
  • Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Training – Hon. Melanie Mark
  • Minister of Agriculture – Hon. Lana Popham
  • Attorney General – Hon. David Eby
  • Minister of Children and Family Development – Hon. Katrine Conroy
  • Minister of State for Child Care – Hon. Katrina Chen
  • Minister of Citizens’ Services – Hon. Jinny Sims
  • Minister of Education – Hon. Rob Fleming
  • Minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources – Hon. Michelle Mungall
  • Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy – Hon. George Heyman
  • Minister of Finance and Deputy Premier – Hon. Carole James
  • Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations, and Rural Development – Hon. Doug Donaldson
  • Minister of Health – Hon. Adrian Dix
  • Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation – Hon. Scott Fraser
  • Minister of Jobs, Trade, and Technology – Hon. Bruce Ralston
  • Minister of State for Trade – Hon. George Chow
  • Minister of Labour – Hon. Harry Bains
  • Minister of Mental Health and Addictions – Hon. Judy Darcy
  • Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing – Hon. Selina Robinson
  • Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General – Hon. Mike Farnworth
  • Minister of Social Development and Poverty Reduction – Hon. Shane Simpson
  • Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture – Hon. Lisa Beare
  • Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure – Hon. Claire Trevena



Doug Donaldson has served as the MLA for Stikine
since May 13, 2009. Before being elected MLA he served
four terms as a municipal councillor in Hazelton
WITH LITTLE to choose from, with regards to selection of Cabinet Ministers, from outside of Vancouver Island and metro-Vancouver, Doug Donaldson has been given the nod to take over as the Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations, and Rural Development.




Donaldson, who hails from the Stikine riding, spoke at the Association for Mineral Exploration (AME) this past January in Vancouver, alongside Green Party leader Andrew Weaver ... and now retired BC Liberal Cabinet Minister Bill Bennett. 



Their session with AME was to ...  provide their mineral exploration and mining policy positions during a facilitated question and answer period with delegates.



The Backgrounder for Minister Donaldson, on the AME Convention website, stated that:

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

MLA Todd Stone has continued tirelessly through-out BC's current forest disaster. For that, and no matter what our political leanings, he is to be commended


In-coming NDP Premier John Horgan

TODAY ... NDP Leader John Horgan will be sworn in as the new Premier of British Columbia.  How long his government, supported by Andrew Weaver and his two Green MLA's, lasts is unknown at this time of course -- we'll just have to wait and see.

Meantime, Christy Clark exits the Premiers office, and her position as leader of the BC Liberals is also be unknown.  Some (many?) say the knives are out to have her replaced, and that of course should be no surprise to anyone.

As to my own Kamloops South MLA Todd Stone; in a Facebook post yesterday, he stated;
As the Interior has been ravaged with wildfires over the past 10 days, it has been by privilege to be on point through this emergency with my colleague, Minister of Forests John Rustad (who has done an outstanding job).

While we have often been the face of government’s efforts to respond to the wildfires and support those most directly impacted, we have the easy jobs compared to those in the public service. I have been proud to work with such incredible public servants as the dedicated professionals in Emergency Management BC, MOTI, FLNRO, Wildfire Service, and the many folks from other ministries and partner agencies.

My confidence that we will get through the current wildfire emergency is rooted in personally knowing the public servants who are in charge - they are the best in the country.

That said, as MLA I will continue to do whatever I can to assist in the emergency
effort and to be there for folks throughout the Interior, as partisan politics has no place during an emergency response – we are all British Columbians, and will get through this challenge by working together and supporting one another.

Mr Stone has continued tirelessly, through-out BC's current forest disaster, in ensuring that things continued as smoothly as this possibly can.  For that, and no matter what our political leanings, he is to be commended.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Todd Stone and Peter Milobar, by all means possible, extort this government to end the never ending delaying process of review after review



With all the troubles and strife people in the Cached Creek / Ashcroft area ... and all the way through, and just past, Williams Lake are going through ... it's hard to get worked up -- annoyed -- or just plain miffed at matters that are political in nature.



Kamloops City Councilor Denis Walsh
I mean, really it is.  WITH ONE EXCEPTION.  The recent letter written by Kamloops City Councillor Denis Walsh.  To be fair (to me that is), I did wait five days while I let things simmer to see if what I had thought up first reading his letter, had changed it all.



It did not.



The letter Denis Walsh wrote to Christy Clark, Andrew Weaver, and soon to be Premier John Horgan had all of the hallmarks of the rabid opposition that has been stirred up for several years now.



It was all filled with all of the buzz words, of doom and gloom, that one would expect ... and even more.  Those included:



...policies on the Ajax mine approval process shock the conscience of the public

...controversial, unacceptable, obsolete and unfair

...not be allowed to proceed in a discriminatory way

...formal disapproval

...virtually powerless regarding the approval process and regulation

...the project could pose serious risks to Kamloops residents’ life and health

...completely unacceptable

...direct threat to the lives and security of the persons living below

...catastrophic failure

...an arbitrary abdication of your foremost responsibility

...opponents have begun queries to legal counsel


Monday, July 10, 2017

Khadr played upon the democratic freedoms and rights that Canadian have



WELL I CERTAINLY STIRRED UP REACTION when my last post went online, as well as other comments, which were made online elsewhere.  People opposed, to what I had to say, had comments which included the following: 

Okay, I'm f - - king sick of the idiocy and done with writing a diatribe every single time a friend posts about how they're upset that Trudeau is giving a terrorist $10m. ...


  • You people are.... willfully ignorant and hypocritical ..

·         God help us. What’s next everybody is “packing”, burning crosses, and having segregated bathrooms.  This rhetoric is disturbing.  Canadians are better than this.

  • My mind is in awe of the number of people who have no respect for what being tortured actually means. Who foolishly think that they wouldn't break ...


  • If our governments are willing to trap and torture people on foreign soil then we have become as bad as our enemies. What's more, a government which will commit war crimes and break international agreements on the treatment of prisoners will eventually have no issues doing the same to it's own people.


  • Oh for f - - ks sake he was a child soldier tortured to make his alleged confession.

  • ... these people are not interested in researching the facts. They just want fodder to feed their insatiable appetite for hatred.


  • …this is by far the stupidest op-piece ever written. ... there are laws in this country and they apply equally and should not differentiate regardless how conservatives may “feel” about it …Trudeau notwithstanding …


On the other had, numerous people agreed with what I had to say, and also what I had re-posted on similar opinions and beliefs.  Comments included: 

...Justin’s reign will run its course. History will show if this is blood money. What bothers me about Justin is his statement, used quite often, “I speak for all Canadians”. 

...A little strong perhaps?  Nope.  Trudeau has the wrong finger up though (FYI ... the post on my personal blog had a photo of Justin Trudeau pointing with one of his fingers) 

...this is not the Canadian way. its wrong 

... traitors are dealt will severely, but here in Canada, we are such a nice, pleasant people, we pay them off, and apologize for any bad words they might have heard ... am I missing something? My moral compass must be skewed... 

...You have expressed my thoughts very well ... 

So, in hindsight, what do I think now?  


Saturday, July 8, 2017

This puke stated that he hoped the settlement (which most would consider blood money) would help restore his reputation



So our daisies and sunshine ... photo bombing ... life is grand PM Justin Trudeau, along with his Liberal government, has issued a formal apology to a terrorist ... who belonged to a terrorist family ... who injured, killed, and maimed untold numbers of people. 



I don't give a crap about what anyone else may have to say --- this was D I S G U S T I N G, and a slap in the face to all Canadians who believe in justice.



TERRORIST Omar Khadr was captured, and sent to Guantanamo Bay under a
Omar Khadr -- terrorist receives +$10 million
pay-out after murdering battlefield medic
PREVIOUS LIBERAL government --- he was brought back by a Conservative government.



Regardless however -- his CRIME got him where he ended up.  NO ONE, other than his own terrorist father (and other family members), are responsible for that.



Andrew Sheer had it right in this GLOBAL NEWS story:

This settlement is a choice made by Justin Trudeau … a slap in the face to the men and women in uniform who face incredible danger every day to keep us safe ... it’s not just wrong, it’s disgusting.”



Jason Kenny was also right, in comments posted to his Facebook page:
"The Trudeau government believes in compensating terrorists, not victims of terrorism ... it appears that the Liberals colluded with Khadr to ensure the widow of US medic Sgt Christopher Speer murdered by Omar Khadr - would be unable to seize Khadr's multi-million dollar bounty. This is beyond shameful. The Trudeau Liberals have shown, yet again, how deeply out of touch they are with Canadians."



Terrorists do not -- no should not -- have the same rights the rest of Canadians, or any other innocent victims of terrorist activities -- and there have been hundreds of examples all across the globe in dozens of countries.  When individuals resort to terrorist activities, their right end at the exact moment they make that choice!



In a CBC interview, this puke (Khadr) stated that he hoped the settlement (which most would consider blood money) would help restore his reputation.

"I think it restores a little bit my reputation here in Canada, and I think that's the biggest thing for me".



NO Omar -- the only thing it does is infuriate the vast majority of Canadians ... and further fortifies the unworthiness of Justin Trudeau to lead this country.



In Kamloops, I'm Alan Forseth.

Monday, July 3, 2017

I've held every position from sign making, to being a candidate for MLA; I am VERY aware of what it takes to win a campaign



For those who read my last post titled, "BC Liberals will win next election, Greens will be wiped out" on the Armchair Mayors website, or in its original title, "That has never happened before, and most will consider it to be a perversion of democracy", on my own "Thoughts on BC Politics and More" blog, it elicited a strong response from at least a few people. 



Gary commented ... Shame on you Alan—I thought you were a loyal Conservative, you have completely forgotten about the resurgence of your party in the next election. If there is anything that Christy Clark has done with her un-Liberal throne speech it will be to revitalize the BC Conservative Party. More than half the BC Liberal Party are hard core Conservatives and they have just been left high and dry by Christy’s throne speech. Your numbers are way off—lets look at this again in four years.

Alan Forseth -- BC Reform Party candidate
1996 BC Provincial election
Kamloops North Thompson riding

MY RESPONSE:
YES … am a loyal conservative

Having worked in ALL aspects of an election campaign (from sign making and leaflet drops, up to and including being a candidate in the ’96 provincial election) I am VERY aware of what it takes to win a campaign. If there is an election in anything less than 10 to 12 months they WILL NOT be ready. In a year to 18 months, with a strong principled and believable leader, they will.

If these things are met, and they can welcome back small ‘c’ conservatives that desire a party then can support, it will still take 2, maybe 3, election cycles to form government.

I’m ready to roll up my sleeves, and go to work to make it happen. Now I, and others, wait for the BC Conservatives to see if they’re ready to become a serious contender.


TONY BRUMMEL commented:
I absolutely disagree with you Alan. I think that Clarks hierocracy will resonate with the electorate.  I think she has guaranteed a win for Mr Horgan in the next election ... the electorate “that is those who actually vote” is not that stupid ... they will rebel against Clark ...

MY RESPONSE:
Hey Tony … I love how politics can bring out such strong and passionate beliefs. It IS great for our democracy and keeps it strong!

Sadly, too many people will believe what they want to hear, and will ignore all evidence to the contrary. That’s why I think they would win a strong mandate, if our new John Horgan led NDP government falls in the next few month.

We’re in interesting times.


CAL DAVIS stated ... I don't understand why you made an apology to the provincial conservatives.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

SANDY Macdougall: "Wow Canada ... memories of those events left an indelible impression on me ..."



Three or four times over the years, that I worked as a reporter, I was privileged to cover Canada Day citizenship ceremonies. The memories of those events left an indelible impression on me and reminded me of just how fortunate we are to live in the best country in the world.

Families who had fled from war torn countries, often having been forced to leave loved ones behind; people who had fought against the impossible odds of starvation and disease, and those who were simply seeking a better life for themselves and their children, they all came to Canada seeking the hope and commitment we held out to them.

These ceremonies always aroused a humility in my soul and re-awakened my sense of gratitude for being a Canadian.

Too often we forget how truly blessed we are in Canada; that our struggles in this country are nothing compared to much of the rest if the world.

Certainly, we have poverty and many other social issues which can drag people down to the depths of despair but we also have the ability to solve these problems when we set our minds to it, something many of the countries of origin of our immigrants and refugees do not have.

A great example of the most important privilege we enjoy in our democratic nation is exemplified in the election we have just completed in British Columbia.

The partisan political battles were hard fought by candidates with widely diverse platforms and we emerged with a new government. Passion and commitment were evident throughout the campaign but, at the end of it all, the reins of government were passed in emotional but peaceful and non-violent ceremonies.

How long the new government will last is unknown but if and when it falls, it will be a peaceful, bloodless occasion.

There are many more things for which we can be grateful in Canada and we can all join together today to celebrate our diversity and love of freedom.


SANDY Macdougall ... AKA 'The Sidwinder' ... is a retired newspaper reporter. He was elected for three consecutive terms to Maple Ridge municipal council in the late 1970s and early 1980s, and also ran for the Progressive Conservatives in Kim Campbell's ill-fated federal election campaign.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

That has never happened before, and most will consider it to be a perversion of democracy



UPDATE ... 8:15pm Thursday June 30th ... John Horgan, NDP Leader, has been invited to form government.




Today in the legislature, a long drawn-out limp to the finish line played out for the BC Liberal Party.  It began this afternoon with parries between Weaver and Clark ... beginning with these words:



A. Weaver: Yesterday the Premier held a press conference in the rose garden, where she stated: "This is isn't a working Legislature, and I haven't seen any evidence that it could work." She further stated: "There's no effort on the part of either opposition party to work together."



Hon. Speaker, she implied that because her government, the government under her leadership, has been unable to advance its agenda — frankly, our agenda — the only option is to subject British Columbia to another election. For weeks, the Premier has delayed a confidence vote that she knows she will lose. Instead, her government has chosen to play political games that are designed to undermine cooperation and stability.



Let me be clear. Stability does not depend on this Premier holding on to power. The Greens stand ready to work with all parties…once the government has demonstrated that it has the confidence of the House



My question to the Premier is this: can the Premier clarify why she made this statement when the majority of members in this House stand ready and willing to work together?



Hon. C. Clark: You know, that member campaigned hard in the election on saying that he was going to be different. Instead, what he's done is decide to just be more of the same.



That member campaigned in the election saying that he was going to be an independent voice in this Legislature, and instead what he's done is decide to sit there and take orders from one of the major parties rather than making up his own mind.



That member said that he supported campaign finance reform and then refused to even look at it when it was proposed in this Legislature. And now that member stands up and says he's willing to work with anybody. Nobody believes you anymore.



I said the same thing a few days ago.  In fact I went so far as to say, on a post to Andrew Weavers story; "Explaining my votes in the BC legislature today":




Principles my buttoo. Andrew Weaver was demanding campaign finance reform, until today. Now he's voted against it. What HE HAS DONE is just showed his true colors... and LACK OF PRINCIPLES. Have fun getting trounced next election Andrew!



Later in the afternoon, in the BC Legislature, Christy Clark stated:
"Now, let me speak to the question that everyone in this chamber has raised in the last few days, because I've heard a lot of people say we've changed. But I know leaders don't lead by refusing to adapt. Leaders do not lead by refusing to hear and refusing to listen."



Let me state ... Clark was full of as much crap as Weaver was.  Neither really care about anything except in Weaver case getting power ... and in Clark's case trying to maintain power.  For Andrew Weaver he unfortunately has not yet come to the realization that come next election the Greens will be wiped out.  And Christy Clark obviously is getting VERY bad advice.  Who in their right mind thought that stealing every election platform idea from the Greens and NDP would do anything except make every British Columbian, no matter what their political leanings, laugh at her pathetic eleventh hour conversion.



Minutes later the Speaker of the House, Steve Thomson, spoke these words that ended sixteen years of government by the BC Liberal Party:


Seeing no further speakers, the question is the amendment to the Address in Reply to the Speech from the Throne moved by the Leader of the Official Opposition, seconded by the member for Cowichan Valley, which reads that:



[Be it resolved that the motion "We, Her Majesty’s most dutiful and loyal subjects, the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia in Session assembled, beg leave to thank Your Honour for the gracious Speech which Your Honour has addressed to us at the opening of the present Session," be amended by adding the following:



"but Her Honour’s present government does not have the confidence of this House."]



"Be it resolved that the motion 'We, Her Majesty’s most dutiful and loyal subjects, the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia in Session assembled, beg leave to thank Your Honour for the gracious Speech which Your Honour has addressed to us at the opening of the present Session,' be amended by adding the following: 'but Her Honour's present government does not have the confidence of this House."



Amendment approved



The BC Legislature adjourned at 5:26pm, following which Christy Clark went and spoke with Lieutenant Governor Judith Guichon, and just before 7:30pm came and out said that "retired to make her decision."




What will that decision be?  There are only two choice ... call an election, or offer to NDP Leader John Horgan the opportunity to form government.



My personal opinion is that she'll call on Horgan to form a government ... one which will have the support of the three Green Party members including Andrew Weaver.



That government however will fail as well because the house will be in a virtual tie.  43 for the GreeNDP ... 43 for the BC Liberals ... and the Speaker. 



NO British Columbian -- at least the 60% that didn't vote for the Greens and NDP -- will agree with the Speaker of the House voting every time with the government to approve its legislation.



That has never happened before, and most will consider it to be a perversion of democracy.



That government will fall, and then we'll be right back into a brand new General Election.



I'll make my prediction right here an now:
BC Liberals ... 49

NDP ... 38

BC Green Party ... ZERO



Now ... we wait for the Lieutenant Governor to decide on if we go straight to an election campaign ... or take a short six to eight week delay for the GreeNDP government before it falls.



Stay Tuned!

In Kamloops ... I'm Alan Forseth

Monday, June 26, 2017

It (the current situation) should wake up those who think Clark is right of centre. Will it? Time will tell



When former MLA and Cabinet Minister Bill Bennett muses aloud about what's to become of the so-called big tent free enterprise coalition ... people really do need to have a listen to what he is saying.

In an article in the Province newspaper on Friday, Bennett (not to be confused with the Kelowna Bennett dynasty) stated:

... the abrupt changes will put pressure on the free-enterprise coalition of centre-left liberals and right-wing conservatives.

“I think there’s likely to be some real angst today on the part of business and fiscal conservatives,” ... the resource sector is likely to be particularly concerned about increasing the carbon tax ...

... challenge will be to deliver the new promises while not compromising the basic principle to balance the budget, pay down debt and maintain the province’s AAA credit rating ... going to be a tall order given some of the new commitments ...

Did Bennett know something he wasn't able to say prior to the election, regarding the future of Christy Clark in the party, and did that play in to him not running again?

Former MLA and Finance Minister Kevin Falcon certainly wasn't singing the praises of Clark on election night, and certainly questioned her future as the scene unfolded while votes were being counted.  And, in the same Province newspaper article from Friday he said he:
... has strong views but would not comment on the throne speech specifics because was still in shock ... “I’m still trying to deal with the magnitude of the shifts ..."

Back to the future of the BC Liberal coalition.

Christy Clark's government will fall later this week on the vote of non-confidence.  Then as long as BC Lieutenant Governor Judith Guichon approves, the Weaver / Horgan GreeNDP government will take over.

That's where the BC Liberal coalitions future comes in to play.

The longer it survives, the better Clark's chance of holding things together for the Liberals, and maintaining her hold on the party.  Once that GreeNDP government falls apart however, what election platform is she going to present, and campaign on?  She already has stolen every planks the Greens and NDP had for the May 9th General Election.

If she abandons them as fast as she did the platform she campaigned on this Spring, what voter will ever believe her (not that she currently and previously had a stellar reputation with voters to start with)?

If she doesn't, then BC voters will have THREE parties running on the center-left.  Meaning the BC Liberals will finally come out and abandon any pretense of actually being conservative.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

THE SIDEWINDER - RE-ARRANGING THE DECK CHAIRS



Figuratively speaking, Christy Clark's speech from the throne could have been a screenwriter's outline for a new documentary on re-arranging the deck chairs on the Liberal's sinking Titanic ship of state.

Knowing that her tenuous hold on the reins of government is doomed, Christy produced a thinly veiled and cynical attempt to lure one or two Green Party MLAs to double cross their party leader and throw in their lot with the Liberals.

Clark's last ditch attempt will fail and the only satisfaction she will get is watching Green Party leader Andrew Weaver and NDP leader John Horgan vote against the throne speech which contained far more NDP/Green Party campaign promises than anything resembling a Liberal platform.

Although she is a tough fighter and won't back down from anyone, Christy Clark's throne speech has not only sealed the fate of her Liberal government but could very well become her swan song as party leader.

Depending on the health and well being of NDP and Green Party MLAs, Clark's disingenuous nonsense could very well become the thing which will keep the unholy alliance between the Green Party and NDP in power longer than anyone thought possible a few days ago.

Unlike the band on the real Titanic which played Nearer My God to Thee as the once perceived unsinkable ship met its doom, this time the band will be playing Perfidious.

What the future will hold for provincial Liberals will ultimately be determined by whoever the party chooses to replace Christy Clark.


SANDY Macdougall ... is a retired newspaper reporter. He was elected for three consecutive terms to Maple Ridge municipal council in the late 1970s and early 1980s, and also ran for the Progressive Conservatives in Kim Campbell's ill-fated federal election campaign.