Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Departing BC Finance Minister Kevin Falcon's dreary record "highlighted" by HST

UPDATED: 4 BC Liberal MLAs gone in 24 hours: George Abbott, Mary McNeill, John less join Kevin Falcon in bailing out.

BC Finance Minister Kevin Falcon reaches the end of the line with little to show for term in Christy Clark government except extending period with hated Harmonized Sales Tax

Getting off at next station: first Gordon Campbell and now Kevin Falcon.
UPDATE #3: At 1:15 p.m. I join host Mike Smyth on CKNW AM 980 to talk about the Kevin Falcon, George Abbott, Mary McNeill & John Les resignations and announcements they won't run in the next election. Tune in!

UPDATE#2: I will be talking to CBC TV News Network host Reshmi Nair NOW at 12:40 pm BC time on Kevin Falcon, George Abbott resignations.

UPDATE #1: BC Liberal Education Minister George Abbott, Children and Family Development Minister Mary McNeill and MLA John Les, Parliamentary Secretary to Premier Christy Clark, are all expected to announce Thursday morning they will not run again in the next provincial election.

Abbott will be the second BC Liberal leadership candidate in 24 hours to quit Clark's government, following Finance Minister Kevin Falcon's resignation Wednesday.  More to come......

ORIGINAL POSTING WEDNESDAY:

After losing the BC Liberal leadership to Christy Clark, Kevin Falcon could say: "I used to be the next Premier of British Columbia!" to rephrase Al Gore's funniest line.

But now Falcon is gone even as finance minister and whether he will ever get another chance to be premier is very dubious at best.

After all, BC Liberals declined to give him the job last year because he was seen as less electable than Clark and carrying too much baggage from his former boss Gordon Campbell.

Some think Falcon is using the same strategy successfully employed by Jean Chretien, John Turner, Bill Vander Zalm and many other politicians who left the electoral arena for a few years only to come back as leaders of their parties.

Maybe so - and I do give Falcon's stated reason for leaving - to support his wife as she gives birth to their second child - considerable weight.

On the other hand, Falcon repeatedly goaded Clark during the leadership over her refusal to run for the BC Liberals in the next election if she lost that contest - saying he'd be running either way. 

Now he's not.  Falcon is allowed to change his mind and particularly when circumstances change significantly.  But I have to think that just like Christy Clark when she lost the NPA nomination for Vancouver mayor in 2005, Kevin Falcon's ambition has not altered either - he still wants to be premier.

Unfortunately for the now simply MLA for Surrey-Cloverdale, his record in office under Clark is rather bereft of good news.

Falcon will best be known for continuing the lengthy period that British Columbians were charged the Harmonized Sales Tax despite soundly rejecting it in the 2011 binding referendum.

Falcon's steadfast defence of the indefensible tax and chippy comments after the referendum that he would be reintroducing a "stupid tax" - the PST - to replace it, isn't a legacy to bring up with voters in a few years and expect glowing memories.

Nor is BC's huge $1.84 billion deficit something to be proud of as finance minister.  Yes, repayment of the HST federal grant is part of that amount but it was the BC Liberals that panicked in 2009 when they saw a deficit 6 times bigger than they promised and then introduced the HST to get that money in the first place.

The other rumour is that Falcon will run for the federal Conservatives in the 2015 federal election somewhere in Surrey.  A credible theory at least.

But in the meantime, regardless of his record or my politics, I do wish Kevin and his family well in the future.  Agree or disagree with his policies but everyone who gives time to public service deserves our thanks.

.


30 comments:

Josef A. Kunzler said...

Very nicely written from the BCNDP side about my hero Kevin Falcon...

Anonymous said...

What would one expect from a long time NDPer? While Bill here can relate Falcon to the HST, What about Bill here assisting with the communications in regards to NDP initiatives when Bill had a door two doors down from Glen Clark?

To his credit, Falcon had fought for and eventually help win the Canada Line which is very successful in terms of ridership (spare the whining about the construction).

But Falcon did not lose the leadership simply because he was thought of being too close to Campbell. That was a major point, yes, but not the sole reason. It was more of Falcon was too close to Corporate Money, that supplementary website listing supporters and donating money did not help his cause, in fact it was a point of irritation amongst many BC Liberals. Plus the fact that Christy Clark with all of her bubbly personality won more votes, than one with a staid businesslike
diretion, and a campaign that simply did not work the way it should have. Style over substance.

and Bill one, can go on for several pages about the errors made by Bill VanderZalm. A good start would be his Property Transfer Tax. That would have been another good project for you if these blogs and internet based social things existed at the time.


Stewart Wright said...

I'm not a Falcon fan or a Liberal fan either..but I bet if he had got the nod for premier, the Lieberals wouldn't be in the straits they are in now.

kootcoot said...

" Agree or disagree with his policies but everyone who gives time to public service deserves our thanks."

Thanks for leaving too! Maybe Kevie should join the HarperCons, he has experience on sinking ships.

DPL said...

Who will be the next to leave? Abbott, Coleman?

Anonymous said...

Stick a fork in CC..she's done. The entire BC Liberal party ( I hate that they use the word Liberal) is going to have their clocks cleaned next year and the smart ones know it. Idiots like Bill Bennett and his childish "commie lover" comment are just lashing out at the inevitable.

Anonymous said...

To Anon 4:14, please remind us all just who is running the province.
I believe the Libs were messing up this province for 11 years, not the BC NDP. That's old news.

Anonymous said...

So if I book a trip to Cuba, I must be a commie pinko?
So I book a trip to Israel I must be a Jew?
Pathetic.

Anonymous said...

Bill, Kevin Falcon's record as cabinet minister has been atrocious at best. Instead of reintroducting Interurban rail to the lower mainland, he increased the problem of automobile congestion through the new Port Mann bridge. His part in the HST debacle goes against his populism posturing. Remember the 1990's, when young Kevy Falcon organized Total Recall against legitimately elected NDP MLA's? How can you wish him well after all this? Falcon is a hard-right ideological worm, disloyal, and ultimately cowardly. I don't wish him well in the future. I wish him hardship and difficulty, because he has foisted the same onto British Columbia.

Anonymous said...

With so many MLA's intending to not run again, what will they exactly not be doing for us between now and election time?
With such little confidence in the current batch of players in Victoria, I think it is time to call an election. Why should the public suffer this incompetence?

Anonymous said...

On the contrary, Mr. Tieleman. The B.C. voter will hopefully have come to their senses in a few years and realize that the HST was a good thing and that we were idiots for buying the snake oil Mr. Vanderzalm was peddling.

Anonymous said...

Three more bail out today. The SS Christy Clark has run aground and is sinking fast by the bow. All cabinet ministers should report to lifeboast stations immediately. Women and children can wait.

D-K-D krys said...

"..I had a dream......for 1000 sharks around this sinking boat . God help sharks too save us ....from this ( jumping )rats we call " Liberals "

Anonymous said...

HST a good thing?
How does endless taxation driving Canadians south be good?
Pull your head out of your arse!
Then ask any real estate agent what's going on.

Anonymous said...

All of this talk and text about Falcon, Christy and Abbott is the same nebulus greenhouse-gas talk we have had for the last decade.

The reality here is nothing is going to change, the BC Liberals will lose the next election but will walk away with millions of dollars in public money in their pockets.

Dix and the NDP will slick-willy on this ... since the NDP does not have the stomach or gonads to launch the REQUIRED criminal and public investigations into the actions of the Campbell-Clark regime.

We can expect Dix to do a Harcourt and be "everyone's friend" in a politically correct . . . appeasement government.

As usual, the only losers are citizens of BC who get "gas-bag gutless (and corrupt) government" from all the parties.

EXCEPT OF COURSE WHEN IT COMES TO SPENDING PUBLIC MONEY ON THEMSELVES!

Who speaks for the people?
Certainly nobody in any current BC political party.

The GREAT SATAN

Anonymous said...

"Remember the 1990's, when young Kevy Falcon organized Total Recall against legitimately elected NDP MLA's?"

This is interesting. Does anyone remember the organzing of recall against legitmately elected BC Liberal MLAs?

As for wanting an election now, suck it up and wait until May. The NDP will be elected. When that happens the blog whiners here will have to seriously think about finding new ways to complain.

Anyone here remember when the NDP went onto the rocks and sank, with only two survivors able to row ashore in the only lifeboat availlable?

Time fades memories indeed.

The big question will be, will the NDP actually learn from their errors? I would guess probably not.

Anonymous said...

Another slime ball Liebrel gone over the side.
Funny how all of the Neo-Con/Liberal
loons now sputter that all Governments are corrupt.
Won't be long now.

CGHZD

DPL said...

1Being a Friday afternoon I expected one or two more to fade. Coleman would be my next choice. I'm also sure that Adrian and his MLA team will be cautious sorting out the big mess left behind by Gordo and his replacement. BC can't afford another day with Ms.Christy at the wheel.
Counti9ng the days

Anonymous said...

Adrian and his MLA team will be cautious sorting out the big mess left behind by Gordo and his replacement.

Don't be too sure about that. The NDP is carrying baggage, and one large piece of luggage tag has BCGEU written on it. The same BCGEU that has guaranteed seats at NDP policy conventions (as does CUPE and the CAW).

The NDP will be expected to be alot to many people who support the NDP. Plus other than those who will get to fly coach, there are many others who expect to be seated in First Class up front.

Also consider prior to when the NDP sank in 2001, 14 NDPers did not run in that election including a few promient players such as Harry Lali and Moe Sihota.

DPL can rock back and forth counting the days, but why bother?

If I were him, I'd be phoning the local riding association and volunteering now to help. The NDP will need help from on the ground volunteers, not fingers on the keyboard bloggers. (This blog pretty much speaks to the NDP choir anyway).

Staring blankly and counting down to the 2013 election isn't going to make any kind of a win for the NDP.

Getting out there and actually helping the candidate will.

Not anon DPL said...

Anon 5:51. I guess since you tell me to do the local riding association a visit, I will expect to see you there as well?
The only persons staring blankly are the ones who get booted in the spring election.

Anonymous said...

I guess since you tell me to do the local riding association a visit, I will expect to see you there as well?

DPL, I actually don't think so. Think.

I live in a different riding in a different part of the province, and since I don't know what you look like, I have no idea if you would expect to see me there. I could walk by and you wouldn't even know it.

I have been a riding association Secretary and Vice President for many years.

not anon DPL said...

Hey Anon 8:11.How would you know what riding I'm from? How would I know if your constituency work has been for the same party I support. as usual the thread has moved far from the article that Bill wrote.

Anonymous said...

Hey Anon 8:11.How would you know what riding I'm from? How would I know if your constituency work has been for the same party I support. as usual the thread has moved far from the article that Bill wrote.

Well how do you justify your earlier statement:

"you tell me to do the local riding association a visit, I will expect to see you there as well?"

This indicates both you and myself at the same location. Not on your best day.

The thread hasn't moved that far. Bill was outlining Kevins failures
and you started to drift as in:

1Being a Friday afternoon I expected one or two more to fade. Coleman would be my next choice. I'm also sure that Adrian and his MLA team will be cautious sorting out the big mess left behind by Gordo and his replacement. BC can't afford another day with Ms.Christy at the wheel."

So how does that relate to Kevin's leaving which was the original subject?

DPL said...

Anon 15:00If you can't see a connection to a Finance Minister leaving same time as two other ministers and an ex minister tell us they are leaving and the possibility or more leaving I guess its no sense writing on this blog as you keep printing out comments of others and try to refute them. Maybe the editorial cartoon of yesterday as a head waiter was about to set the table for the Liberal caucus,would be of interest. His comment was" Ms.Clark, party o0f one"

anybody but christy said...

May cannot come to soon. I hope the NDP does not go back on their word of holding these criminals feet to the fire or they'll never survive. People of this province are tired of being hosed by political thugs and aren't going to take it much longer. If the NDP doesn't rid itself of it's gender politically correct mantra there will be no peace in this province. We've been taxed to the max and now it' time to do some serious house cleaning. Action not words..

Anonymous said...

Anon 15:00If you can't see a connection to a Finance Minister leaving same time as two other ministers and an ex minister tell us they are leaving and the possibility or more leaving I guess its no sense writing on this blog as you keep printing out comments of others and try to refute them.

Well DPL, you seem to have a habit of stretching out. The original premise of Bill's latest work is fcoused on Falcon, not whether Coleman or MacDiramid will be next.

But following that, you seem to forget alot of NDP Ministers dumped out just before the 2001 election, so this isn't new, except for those who follow politics on blogs which did not exist in 2001.


"Maybe the editorial cartoon of yesterday as a head waiter was about to set the table for the Liberal caucus,would be of interest. His comment was" Ms.Clark, party o0f one""

I don't read editorial cartoons much anymore. Contributions from those such as yourself are more entertaining.


Anonymous said...

If the NDP doesn't rid itself of it's gender politically correct mantra there will be no peace in this province

Now there is something that needs to be taken out. Its discriminatory and does actually prevent good people from running for the NDP.

Bill? How about it? Theres still time to take a very strong stand on it now that the NDP will be completing the balance of nominations.

Suppose you wanted to run sometime in the future. The simple answer is that because of their gender policy you wouldn't be able to.

Too bad. You'be a good MLA despite your past connection to that awful Glen Clark.

DPL said...

Anon 5:59 Figures he has everything figured out. Used to be common to flame people and it looks like some folks still do just that. Some of his comments are quite rude and insulting to others, who supposedly are supporting the same party.

The Liberals are in disarray right now, and when editorial cartoonists and political writers start sticking a politician it shows to many of us,a politician on the way out. And of course many of us have contributed over many years to certain parties and candidates, doing the odd jobs , contributing money, and lots of hours that are required to assist the candidate of choice. Celebrate when the ones we support appear to be getting the winning hand. Be saddened when our folks lose support.

When sort of right wing news outlets write serious articles about our choices to be MP or MLA things look even better for the folks we choose to support.

Anonymous said...

"Anon 5:59 Figures he has everything figured out. Used to be common to flame people and it looks like some folks still do just that. Some of his comments are quite rude and insulting to others, who supposedly are supporting the same party."

And yours DPL are not exactly polite and respectful either.

The Liberals are in disarray right now, and when editorial cartoonists and political writers start sticking a politician it shows to many of us,a politician on the way out. And of course many of us have contributed over many years to certain parties and candidates, doing the odd jobs , contributing money, and lots of hours that are required to assist the candidate of choice. Celebrate when the ones we support appear to be getting the winning hand. Be saddened when our folks lose support.

Exactly. If you don't know how to lose, you don't know how to win.

Even when you win, you lose in some way.

"When sort of right wing news outlets write serious articles about our choices to be MP or MLA things look even better for the folks we choose to support."

The right wing news media hasn't written much of anything serious about NDP choices, asn there isn't much to write about. Dix is doing the right thing by not saying much, but the media will go after him strongly to get out exactly what the NDP intends to do once Dix becomes Premier.

Be around when it happens.

Anonymous said...

Your blog is incredibly boring when the poster endlessly copies and pastes over, and over. Time to fix it.
Your word verification is almost impossible to decipher. Even with magnifying glasses.