Saturday, December 03, 2016

This Weekend In Clarkland...'Very Flawed' Research.


It would appear that something may be going on at the MoCo that will not curry favour with certain members of the local puffed-up punditry.

Specifically, it looks like the folks from the CBC are actually be paying attention and not taking codswallop for an answer.

By way of illustration the following is the lede from a piece posted today by the CBC's Natalie Clancy and Manjula Dufresne:

The amount of money B.C. is spending to prevent fentanyl overdoses seems to depend on which day the question is asked.

On Tuesday, it was more than $10 million.

On Wednesday it was $15 million.

By Thursday, B.C. Premier Christy Clark had nearly tripled that number.

"We have put at least $43 million into it and that doesn't count all the hospital resources." said Clark.

Clark responded to questions at a news conference about a CBC report on how little money B.C. had originally budgeted when the public health emergency was declared in April.

The story pointed out the government had allocated 10 times more funds to the fight swine flu than it had the fentanyl crisis.

But Clark said the original $15 million figure was based on "very flawed" research.

Except that research came from her own officials in the Ministry of Health...


I wonder if any of any members of the Wizardry and/or the Klout Klub executive are having second thoughts about their prior removal of the good Mr. Smart from his previously more useful place and position?


Friday, December 02, 2016

Advent Jukebox...Day 2.


Did this one earlier today at my class of the year with the Two E.'s...


This Friday Afternoon In Clarkland...What You Won't Find In Today's Document Dump.


...Which would be latest provincial employment numbers from Statscan:

Imagine that!

Tip O' The Toque to the infamous GrantG for the heads-up on the Twittmachine.


This Day In Clarkland: Hey, Young Man! Bring Me Some Of Your Shiny-Shine!


From Ms. Hunter of the Globe:

B.C. Premier Christy Clark said this week she is poised to support the expansion of Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain oil pipeline, but on Thursday distanced herself from the task of persuading British Columbians that the project is worth the risk.

“Selling Kinder Morgan as being in the national interest is really the Prime Minister’s job,” Ms. Clark told reporters, repeating her invitation to Justin Trudeau to come to British Columbia to defend the decision he announced this week in Ottawa. Asked whether the project now has social licence to proceed, she again deflected: “That’s a question worth asking of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.”...

Which means, of course, that Ms. Clark takes no political risks by actually, you know, governing.

That and, perhaps, the poll and focus-group numbers from the ConWizards she relied on last time out are still soft?


Thursday, December 01, 2016

The Advent Jukebox....Day 1.



That's right.

Twenty-Five low-fi (and I mean low!) tunes in Twenty-Five days for the season...

Here is cover of one of my Mom's all-time favourites:


Can John Horgan And The Dippers Win By Pulling A Bernie Sanders (In Fundraising)?


Last weekend Mr. Mason of the Globe wrote a column taking John Horgan to task for having the audacity to actually court big dollar donors.

Which, in my opinion at least, was both dumb and obvious given that the Dippers have to play by the ridiculous BC Liberal Banana Republican Rovian fundraising rules that cannot be changed until someone else forms the government.

Which, bizarrely, Mr. Mason has noted in the past but essentially ignored in the column under consideration.


What surprised me in the ensuing discussion, both here at this little F-Troop list blog (see the comments here) and out in the wider world/louder echo chamber of the Twittmachine, was how many Dipper-friendly folks took the position that Mr. Horgan et al. are not pure enough and, worse, are squandering the opportunity to whip up a grass roots fundraising frenzy that will bring in boatloads of cash that will sweep them to a populist victory.

An example of this desire for fundraising purity can be found in a Twittmachine exchange between Rod Mickeburgh and Kai Nagata that took place a few days ago:


Let's ignore the 'Can the Dippers make like Bernie Sanders politically?' thing for the moment and just ask a more hard-headed question, which is...

"If the BCNDP could be as successful as Bernie Sanders in raising money in small dollops from non-wealthy donors, could they bridge the fundraising gap with the BC Liberals?"

Sound like a reasonable question given Mr. Mason's original thesis and the discussion it whipped up?

Alright fellas (and gals)....Lets go!


I have already explained the huge six million dollar advantage, all of it due to massive corporate support and wealthy donor support/investment, that the BC Liberals gained in 2015 which, given the multitude of secret big money hookups recently, has to be at least as large (if not much larger) for 2016.

Which means that the BC Liberals are very likely at least twelve million dollars ahead as of right now.

So, could the Dippers make that up by going all "pure-as-the-driven-snow-Sandersesque" for the next six months?


How about we do a little bit of new fangled math (i.e. long division) and see what the numbers look like?

During his recent campaign down south Mr. Sanders raised $202 million in small donations from a voter base of 136 million.

In the last election the voter base in British Columbia was 1.8 million which is 1.3 percent the size of that in United States. I will round that number off to 1.5% just to be safe.

All of which means that, even if the Dippers the fantastic job that Bernie Sanders did with small money donors they would raise a total of about three million dollars leaving them nine million behind the BC Liberals. And then, of course, there is all that darker money that is about to be thrown around by the highly 'resourceful' BC Liberal wizards' surrogates and astroturf layers to consider, not to mention the PAB-Botian ad blitzkriegs that are and will be paid for by you and me.

Which is why I stand by my original assertion, now more than ever, that Mr. Mason and those very well meaning and idealistic folks that have that have been bamboozled by the Masonian blather are asking the BC NDP to fight the upcoming election campaign with both hands tied behind their back.


That 'Alright fellas, let's go!' thing given you an earworm?....Well, of course....This.


Monday, November 28, 2016

Bernie Sanders Is Very Worried That Republicans Unleashed Will Make U.S. Campaign Fundraising Just As Bad As...

...British Columbia.

I'll be back with more on why the BCNDP cannot unilaterally disarm on fundraising, with a Sanderseque-like theme and everything...Later.


Saturday, November 26, 2016

According To Ron Obvious The BCNDP Should...

...Fight The Next Election With Both Hands Tied Behind Its Collective Back.

In his latest column in the Globe and (nolongerempire) Mail, Gary Mason first praises John Horgan and the NDP for taking a stand against the killing of grizzly bears.

And then, obviously,  Mr. Mason spends most of the rest of his screed taking Mr. Horgan to task for courting big money donors after first brushing aside the fact that the BCNDP have made it crystal clear that they will introduce legislation to halt this business if they are elected.

Because, well, this:

...Mr. Horgan, with the right, Bernie Sanders-type message, could have raised hundreds of thousands of dollars through small $50 and $100 donations. He could have said no to the same $10,000 dinners Ms. Clark attends, driving home the distinction between his party and one that trades ingress for dollars...

Now, on a very superficial level that makes a certain kind of simplistic sense, right?

Except, of course, Mr. Mason seems to be unaware (or unwilling to tell his readers) that, under the current rules that the Clarklandians refuse to change, 'hundreds of thousands' in small donations doesn't mean squat when it comes to dealing the BC Liberal's Big Money Cronification-Of-Everything Pay-To-Play Machine.

How do I know this?

Well, I actually went and looked at the publicly available records of party fundraising from 2015.

And right there, in non-searchable, scanned-in black and white it says that the BCNDP raised $1,068,479 from contributions of $250 or less in 2015 (see pg 7).

Which is great given that it is almost twice the $592,440 BC Liberals received in small donations last year (see pg 8).

But here's the thing that really matters...

In 2015 the Clarklandian cronification machine brought in $9,379,808 in big money donations, more than $6 million of which came from corporations and commercial operations.

By way of comparison, the Dippers raised $1,983,011 in large donations, most of which came from individual citizens (i.e. less than $400K and $150K came from unions and corporations, respectively).

Which means that the BC NDP cannot win by exclusively courting small donors under the current rules that they cannot change until the win.

Because even if they could raise a clearly impossible $5 million in brand new money through small donations from supporters without money or power (or cronification leverage) the Dippers would still be way behind the BC Liberals.

And that's just based on 2015 numbers without knowing how things have gone in 2016 when Ms. Clark and friends have gone hog-wild with the secret big money meet-ups.



Here's what I really have to say.

To hell with the obvious.

Because I, for one, do not want the only side that has a hope-in-heckfire of beating the BC Liberals to march into the upcoming election maelstrom without any money to fight the avalanche of crony-bought propaganda that is massing, golem-like, just over the New Year's horizon.


Why am I so upset about this codswallop given everything else that is going down in the local Lotuslandian proMedia at the moment?... Well, in addition to the fact that superficial obviousness was used, once again, by Mr. Mason to twist a story into something that it is not there  is also the matter of headline to the piece: "Controversial fundraiser leaves B.C. NDP as guilty as the Liberals". Clearly, one look at the actual numbers (i.e. the facts) outlined above demonstrates that this is patently false....But, then again, it did take a lowly idiot blogger such as myself about 93 seconds to look up said facts...If you get my drift.


Hey Vancouver Sun Editorial Board!...On ICBC, Both Sides DON'T.


In an editorial published this morning, the Vancouver Sun has the following to say in the wake of the BC Liberal government's announcement that, after taking $6.4 billion (with a 'B') out of the system, they are now promising (kinda/sorta/maybe) to stop with the dividend gouging for the next 'few years':

...So, that’s all well and good. Where things fall apart is when the government and opposition play partisan political games with what ought to be an autonomous company rigorously regulated by the B.C. Utilities Commission, an agency that should be unfettered in carrying out its responsibilities...


The 'government' and the 'opposition' are equally at fault here for things falling apart?


As you can imagine that got my attention.

So I decided to read on in search of the Vancouver Sun's evidence to back up this most interesting statement.

First up was their hit on the BC Liberals and their leader:

...Premier Christy Clark said she’s maintaining a cap on annual premium increases of 4.9 per cent because she’s “fighting for the ratepayers, the people who drive cars, who buy insurance, the moms and dads who are already finding life unaffordable.”...

Now that hit is something I actually agree with given that, as has been pointed out here repeatedly in recent days, Ms. Clark has actually been screwing those mom's and dad's who drive over, but good, for the last five years.

And did I mention that that $6.4 billion (with a 'B') has helped pay for the BC Liberal government's regressive tax cuts for the well off and resource extractors for the last ten years and build phony ponzi budgets while it screws those mom's and dad's further over their MSP premiums and BCHydro rates?


As for NDP's political skullduggery that proves that both sides are equally at fault on the ICBC rate increase matter?

Well, according to the editorial board of the Vancouver Sun it comes down to the following:

...NDP critic Adrian Dix said a government announcement to stop insuring luxury cars valued at over $150,000 was designed to disguise ICBC’s forced release of hypothetical rate forecasts that suggest an increase of up to 42 per cent by 2020 in a worst case scenario...


That's all the Vancouver Sun editorial board has?

They are seriously complaining that, by pointing out obvious deflector spike spin for what it is (heckfire, even the timing of the announcement by the Minister responsible demonstrates that), the NDP is playing 'political games' that are just as bad as those of Ms. Clark's BC Liberal government on this file?

That is truly bizarre.


Could it be something else?

And one thing I have not seen any member of the local puffed-up Lotuslandian proMedia punditry consider is the possibility that this luxury car thingy may actually be the very thin edge of the privatization wedge in disguise...Regardless, given the timing of the announcement and how little 3,000 vehicles impacts the actual ICBC bottomline in terms of real dollars, the fact that the VSun would raise it to this level of false equivalency re: what the BCLiberal government has done over the past five years and plans to do for the next five re: rate hike, is laughable in the extreme.


Friday, November 25, 2016

This Friday In Clarkland (& GordCo, Inc., Too).... Six Point Four Billion.


With a 'B'....

Don't know about you, but I for one sure am looking forward to a soon-to-be-published serial series of increasingly hard-hitting Ron Obvious columns focused on that number rather than the 'low Canadian dollar', or the 'increased claims' (but NOT per capita), or weasel-worded the story of how Ms. Clark's minon Mr. Stone is now going to give us all a break for awhile from these stealth tax....errr....dividend extractions which means that everything is just A-OK and pass the 4.9% happy talk.

Or some such thing.