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I have no intention of being “Mr. Nice Guy” to Gordon Campbell because he’s leaving office to wait for his massive pension to kick in and for lush directorships from the Energy companies to be offered.

I’m an environmental activist trying to save our salmon, our rivers, and our farm land, Why should I get warm and mushy all over because Campbell has been pushed out of his office?

Under Campbell’s government the moratorium on Atlantic Salmon fish farms was lifted resulting in the loss of 100s of thousands of our wild salmon being lost to sea lice from the fish farms. Far from doing anything about it, Campbell has encouraged more of them.

Citizens of Tsawwassen are fighting encroachment on farmland with nary a word of justification from Campbell whose job it is to support the principles of the ALR and stop encroachment.

Campbell has actively supported the destruction of our rivers and the ecologies dependent upon them approving of large companies receiving permits to provide power that BC Hydro must buy, need it or not. Hydro must pay at least twice what it’s worth on the open market and since they don’t need the private power, have two options: sell it at a 50% loss or, use it themselves at a cost of 12 times what Hydro can make it for themselves. Is it any wonder that folks who hate this desecration of our rivers, farmland and wild salmon bad mouth the premier and the minister responsible?

I raise this last question because Gordon Campbell is whining about how his family was upset by the things he was called, Pinocchio, I presume being one of them.

Families of politicians, great and small, always bear the brunt of abuse and if that cannot be borne, one shouldn’t get involved in the first place. I do feel for the Campbell family – my wife and four kids suffered this as well for while I was not premier, I was a Councilor for and MLA of a smaller centre (Kamloops) and scarcely a day when one or more of them didn’t hear their father/husband abused. Prospective politicians should consult carefully to their entire family before taking the plunge. However, Campbell must take the majority of the blame himself.

The premier I worked for, a gillion years ago, unlike Campbell, let ministers do their job unhindered by hassling and “hands on” habits. This way we ministers quite rightly took responsibility for our portfolios.

Forgive me if I retell a story.

After a speech I made in Tsawwassen on the overhead power lines issue, I was approached a lady, clearly a Liberal, who chastised me for constantly asking where then MLA Val Roddick was and said “I bet you that you never went to these sorts of rallies.”

I told her of a rally in Quesnel where ranchers angry at my stopping the killing of wolves were rallying for only one reason, to dare the minister to attend, and, if he did, hassle the hell out of them. I did and it was a hall full of 500 very angry men and women.

I said to her “I suppose you think I was a brave man.”

She nodded her head.

I said “bravery had nothing to do with it; had I not gone I would have had my ass kicked out of cabinet.”

Bill Bennett expected his ministers to deal with their portfolios, especially the dodgy bits, and I daresay most of my colleagues could tell of the shit they had to stare down.

In the premier’s case the normal nastiness is much aggravated because he, on several occasions, and there is no other word for it, lied through his teeth. Voters expect and tolerate “spin” but will not accept lies as opposed to polished political prose.

Let’s go back to the facing the public bit.

I’m involved on the movement to save our environment, especially though not exclusively fish and energy matters. I and my colleague Damien Gillis have spoken at public meetings all over the province and never, not once, did a Liberal MLA or candidate show up. In the May 2009 election we specifically asked the Cabinet Minister to attend meetings but nary a one did. I have challenged the premier, and/or the energy minister to attend our meetings or simply have a debate with them but no takers.

Is it any wonder then that the public call the premier and his shy ministers “cowards” or worse?

I say this to Gordon Campbell,  – sir,  it’s not the media or environmentalists that have caused anguish for your family.

7 Responses to “Gordon Campbell and facing the public”

  1. jamie says:

    Excellent post,why should one feel badly for him after the damage he caused to so many to profit his howe street pals.There is also a great article on his premiership posted by the communist part of BC in the current Georgia straight ( I didn’t know they still existed)

  2. Try to It must have been a sober realization that Campbell endured when he faced the end of his slopping at the trough. It was as if BC was his and his friends personal domain to be exploted regardless of economic, social or environmental impacts.?

    Why is he hanging around now, really? Is there some last minute pilfering that he has in my mind?

    I wonder if any of the leadership hopefuls will campaign against his record, style and way of running cabinets?

    Gordo has damaged more than rivers, salmon and farmland. He has also poisoned the political culture and entrenched greed and self serving as how business is done in the pointy buildings.

  3. […] in Gordon Campbell and facing the public (Nov. 06 2010), takes on Gordon Campbell and his ministers for their failure to engage with the […]

  4. jartann says:

    Whatever Mr Campbell’s faults may be, and I certainly have disagreed with many of his policies-the point about the effect on one’s family is relevant. Too many people use the anonymity of the internet to say and write things they lack the courage to say where the comments could be directly attributed to them.

    For example, people like Jamie just write that Campbell benefitted his “Howe St Pals”-who exactly are these people. And what does the term “howe st pal” refer to-presumably a reference to the old VSE which is long gone. So, which pals are people talking about and exactly what has the premier done to benefit them and where is the proof that this was done to benefit the premier? Well, to some people the absence of evidence is concrete proof that something illegal or improper is going on.

    It is one thing to disagree with one’s policies, it is another to engage in the politics of personal destruction. I totally disagree with socialists and most environmentalists on just about everything, but I want to debate them on policy and evidence, not on the basis of unproven and unprovable claims of dishonesty.

    Too many people now argue that anyone who disagrees with them is a bad person, is involved in obtaining personal benefits or whatever. Time and again we find that this is not the case at all. There is generally much less to these claims than meets the eye.

    I agree with rafe that Campbell micro managed the entire government too often. This has had the effect of weakening the talent pool the Liberals have to draw from when it comes to replacing him-but the Social Credit party under Bill Bennett wound up in the same place. However, I would also remind people that the NDP and the public sector unions are joined at the hip. We found this througout the 90’s and it is unlikely to change if they form government again. Whatever Campbell’s ties to “pals” of various streets may be, the NDP relationship with big labour is very clear and very obvious.

  5. Olivia says:

    Can you name some examples of how the NDP and the public sector unions are joined at the hip? What has Carole James done that reflects that? Other than accepting donations from unions (and not anywhere near the percentage of business donations to the Liberals, and you need money to run a politcal campaign) tell me what is so obvious. Carole James wants to stop political donations from unions and business, the Liberals won’t as they get their majority of money from business, so what has she done to make you say that? Please tell since it is so obvious to you.

  6. Julie says:

    Campbell may have resigned, however, he has no intention of leaving. He said in his address, he would be around for some months, to make sure the transition goes smoothly. He said, he will continue with his dirty work, er, I mean work. The next leadership convention isn’t until next spring. Campbell has now ordered the RCMP to investigate the signatures, from the fight HST. I think Campbell should give the RCMP more meaningful work. Such as a further investigation into, Campbell’s corrupt sale of the BCR. The RCMP refused to do so, they don’t want to lose their contract, with the province of BC. Campbell should have been, flung in prison the minute he fraudulently sold the BCR. This has further eroded the BC peoples confidence in the RCMP. We had hoped, the changes in the police force would allow the BC people to trust the RCMP. However, nothing is any different. Corruption and greed is Campbell and the BC Liberals, mantra. And although, Prosperity mine is now outlawed…Campbell and Harper, still have more pollution plans for BC. Thank you Rafe, for keeping us informed.

  7. kootcoot says:

    Hi Rafe, I see you get the attention of the vacuous PABlum Brigade too! Hi Jartann – I hope you are getting your resume in order, perhaps you should rehearse the line “Do you want fries with that” and hope that under a new government the minimum wage will be slightly more so you can afford a high quality card board box to live in the Big Smoke down by the Sea!

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