Tuesday, May 10, 2011

David Eby versus Premier Christy Clark - the choice couldn't be clearer in Vancouver-Point Grey by-election, given Clark's sorry record

Premier Christy Clark - no debate, a sorry record
David Eby - NDP Vancouver-Point Grey candidate
Vote Gliberal?

Christy Clark is breezy on the campaign trail, but her record is seriously flawed

Bill Tieleman's 24 hours/The Tyee column

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

By Bill Tieleman

"Glib, off-the-cuff comments might make for good ratings on a talk show, but if you want to be leader of our party and premier of our province you have to know that your words have power."

- BC Liberal MLA Kevin Falcon on Christy Clark, Feb. 1, 2011

The Vancouver-Point Grey by-election Wednesday is about far more than whether BC Liberal Premier Christy Clark wins a seat in the Legislature.

Rather, it's the first chance for any B.C. voters to determine whether Clark's flaws of character, policy and record should be punished or rewarded.

It's a choice all British Columbians will likely soon get in a provincial election this fall when Clark faces new NDP leader Adrian Dix and new BC Conservative leader John Cummins.

The by-election match-up of Clark against New Democrat David Eby is a classic for contrast.

Eby is a young lawyer with an admirable record of standing up for human rights and democratic freedoms as the executive director of the BC Civil Liberties Association and Pivot Legal Society before that.

Clark’s experience with the law consists of breaking it as education minister in ex-premier Gordon Campbell’s cabinet, by violating the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

And of course, Clark never had to testify in B.C. Supreme Court about what she may have known or not known of the $1 billion privatization of B.C. Rail in the trial of former BC Liberal ministerial aides David Basi and Bob Virk.

A surprise guilty plea ended the trial before Clark could be called to testify, but after the BC Liberal government signed off on paying $6 million in legal fees for Basi and Virk, despite their lack of innocence.

On the environment, Eby would protect B.C.'s coastline from oil tanker traffic.

But Clark's position: "We've got [oil] tankers going up and down the St. Lawrence [river] for heaven's sake... I don't know why we'd ban them off the west coast."

And Clark's top priority federal government issue? Reversing a decision that the Prosperity Mine in northern B.C. could not proceed because even Prime Minister Stephen Harper's government said it was too environmentally devastating.

Then there are cosmetic pesticides. Clark surprisingly agreed with Dix's proposal last week to ban them -- surprising because her top leadership campaign advisor Gwyn Morgan says the idea is "junk science."

Morgan even disagrees with the Canadian Cancer Society's support for a ban, saying: "The medical evidence is scant."

Has Clark decided to support Dix because she thinks Morgan is wrong -- or because it's politically expedient?

Division or unity?

When it comes to building a team that crosses traditional divides, Eby has gained support from former politicians of different stripes -- like Eleanor Gregory, an ex-BC Liberal constituency president and former Non-Partisan Association Vancouver school trustee.

And Eby's campaign was boosted by NDP MLAs Mike Farnworth, Jenny Kwan, Shane Simpson -- who didn't back Dix's leadership bid -- canvassing with Dix to help defeat Clark.

By comparison, Clark could only convince one unknown backbench MLA to support her leadership campaign and there has been no significant presence of former leadership candidates Falcon, George Abbott or Mike de Jong in Vancouver-Point Grey.

Clark campaigns in a glaring spotlight but totally alone.

And rumours fly that Clark is busy purging BC Liberal MLAs who backed other leadership candidates. That explains West Vancouver-Capilano MLA Ralph Sultan's odd letter obtained by Public Eye Online saying he is going to run for another term when there is no election in sight.

North Shore News columnist Trevor Lautens recently wrote that Sultan and West Vancouver -- Sea to Sky MLA Joan McIntyre may be pushed out by Clark's supporters and replaced by former BC CTV News anchor Pamela Martin -- Clark's campaign membership chair -- and Pamela Goldsmith-Jones, West Vancouver's mayor.

Other reports indicate more dissension in BC Liberal ranks, with Clark targeting MLAs and staff who didn't salute her leadership flag for an early pre-election exit.

Ducking debates

Then there's this little thing called democracy.

Clark claims she is "changing" the style of the BC Liberal government and doing things "differently" -- but her cowardly avoidance of all-candidates' debates -- even one organized by parents at Bayview Community School -- is identical to Gordon Campbell's disdain for citizen engagement.

Some media columnists have said Clark the former CKNW radio talk show host would never have tolerated a politician dodging debates.

"Now she has become what she despised," The Province's Mike Smyth wrote after he couldn't convince Clark to participate even in a debate on her old CKNW show, which he now hosts.

But I think otherwise -- because Clark was always a politician who only used her radio show to build profile for her inevitable run for premier -- Clark was no Jack Webster in the making.

Vancouver-Point Grey voters will have their say Wednesday. And Clark's sorry record makes the choice very clear.



Anonymous said...

Unfortunately it does not matter the quality of a candidate. The self-interest voter will always be that, no matter what. VPG is full of them.

Anonymous said...

Campbell left the country whenever Legislature was in. He always left his dirty work, for someone else to do.

Campbell refused to call a sitting of the fall Legislature. There was no way Campbell would allow himself to get into a debate. Nor can Christy. She will get slaughtered the same as Campbell would have.

The BC Liberal party is based upon, Campbell's old lies and corruption. Christy can't clean up Campbell's old mess of, his corrupt sale of the BCR, because she and family were implicated in that crime.

This conflict renders Christy useless. Christy does have a sorry record. Her record will stay that way, unless she cleans up, the corrupt mess this province is in.

Christy has to put right, the corruption, lies and deceit, that Campbell did to the province and the people.

This is not going to ever go away. Good luck to David Eby. Point Grey citizens, will have someone reliable, they can count on.

Anonymous said...

Your points are certainly correct and in some cases have to be "censored" for legal reasons . . . But again they are correct!

Now for the sad part . . . I do not believe the NDP, its rank & file and certainly its leadership have the determination to engage and destroy the Clark/BC Liberals in the next election.

Up against the Evil Queen and her army of BC media fart-catchers the NDP just doesn't have the guts to match the BC Liberals in dirty tricks & tactics.

Unless the BC NDP are prepared to do a 180 degree shift from the "appeasement" of the last decade . . . they will be defeated on the battlefield.

In fact, the campaign ... The War, must start today . . . and if not, its the Evil Queen and her BC media whores for at least four more years.


Jim Harris said...

It is interesting that you would mention Christy Clarke's character flaws without mentioning Dix's obvious character flaws. Forgery is a character flaw that is ingrained and if you do it once you will repeat it.

Anonymous said...

Eby is an ego-manic sleaze-bag; one of the 99% of lawyers who give the rest a very BAD name!

Why does the NDP ALWAYS shoot itself in the foot?

DPL said...

The Globe did an article on Ms. Clark today( Tuesday) attempting to do the job of a waitress, for a whole two hours. The job was far above her capability. She sure likes photo ops, but doesn't answer questions or show up for all candidates meetings. Reminds me of ex King Gordo's performances. If people in that riding accepts her, I have a old bridge for sale in the Sahara desert, cheap

Anonymous said...

Bill, you're so far over to one side on this one, I figured you would tip over to the left.

Eby isn't exactly stellar. His much ballyhooed "Legal Observers" project that he kept goin on about
bombed badly. It was a joke.

The NDP could have done much better than having Eby, but I've seen sloppiness from all recent campaigns.

Christy Crunch will win Point Grey.

Ron1 said...

No wonder Eleanor Gregory is supporting David Eby.

All true liberals will hopeflly do the same.

Anonymous said...

The BC Liberals are a very soiled and corrupt outfit. Campbell was so low of character, to lie, deceive, thieve, was his forte and he is proud of that. Campbell's crime of his theft and sale of the BCR, was child's play to him. He knew decent people would never think of stooping that low. So his thefts and dirty tactics were made easy for him, by us. The way Campbell sniveled and begged forgiveness for his DUI, and then kicked the people in the face for doing so, how low can he get? Well we all know how low he went.

The fact that Christy would have Colin Hansen, working with her, says it all. He was Campbell's most important henchman, who did aid and abet him. Christy has not fixed the corruption and crimes, of the BC Liberals, nor will she ever.

I will take David Eby any day, before the likes of Christy Clark. Perhaps Eby can dish it out to Christy. Give the BC Liberals a taste of their own medicine.

Anonymous said...

The vast majority of voters will stay home ... and we'll be lucky to have a turnout of 25 per cent, which is the average for recent BC by-elections.

Getting out the vote is key. Targeting renters and UBC students will be crucial. A pre-vote registration drive would have been very helpful.

BC, and Canada, need people like David Eby.

Anonymous said...

To be fair about Christy Clark on the cosmetic pesticide ban, when she was on NW, she had us on about the issue several times. She was also very supportive about banning toxic ingredients in personal care products. This is one area of the environment where I have to admit she was helpful.

Anonymous said...

"I will take David Eby any day, before the likes of Christy Clark. Perhaps Eby can dish it out to Christy. Give the BC Liberals a taste of their own medicine."

Obviously the NDP can't take any of theirs.

Anonymous said...

Christy's win of Point Grey, means this province is further doomed.

There is no way out of the horrific turmoil, lies, deceit and corruption, we have been forced to contend with for 10 years.

BC is the worst and most corrupt province ever heard of, in our country's entire history. Campbell was the most despised, corrupt premier. also ever in Canada's history.

Christy is just another Campbell in a skirt. The lies, deceit, corruption, thefts, criminal deeds, will never cease in this province. BC has a foul stench we have been forced to endure, because of Campbell and the BC Liberals. Nothing has changed.

Anonymous said...

"Christy's win of Point Grey, means this province is further doomed.

There is no way out of the horrific turmoil, lies, deceit and corruption, we have been forced to contend with for 10 years.

BC is the worst and most corrupt province ever heard of, in our country's entire history. Campbell was the most despised, corrupt premier. also ever in Canada's history. "

Not really. Pierre Trudeau takes that prize.

WOuld the same thing be said if the NDP becomes government? The NDP is carrying alot of baggage and has alot of "accounts payable overdue"

Anonymous said...

Eby just may have in fact have won. EBC is not releasing the results.

Anonymous said...

Eby just may have in fact have won. EBC is not releasing the results.

They already have. The summary results are on the EBC page. If you're looking for the poll by poll, that takes time to verify. The final results will be released. There is a time schedule for it. No different than when by-elections occured when the NDP was in power, nor as when Elections Canada releases final results from a federal election.

Patience is a virtue, but obviously not with some people who don't take the time to think simple things through. When they don't they squeal something is being hid, which in fact it isn't.

Anonymous said...

Christy wins. You lose again NDP. Eby, another lawyer lowlife failed to become a politician.