Thursday, February 19, 2015

Norm Farrell with Ian Jessop, CFAX1070, Feb 19



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6 comments:

  1. That was a very good interview, Norm. On top of your useful exposing of the BC Lib trickery involved in "balancing" the budget, I found the closing comments especially interesting.

    You said you were pleased with the readership numbers you have at your site — but that there were many more BCers who need to hear the information. Then, "They have to care to sit down and think about it."

    I spend hours per day on political blogs and news sites. Way too much time. While many don't have the inclination, still others don't have the time.

    That should leave a good million or so BCers that might like to be informed — if we can get the information to them. I think all of your regular readers can do a little bit to spread the word, through social media and perhaps leaving print-outs of your web address on community bulletin boards. I do both.

    Your last statement in the interview speaks to your relative political neutrality... though any BC Liberal supporter might guess that you have a big hate on for the current leadership. I quote you, "If the government changes, I will take exactly the same attitude."

    I look forward to the day when you can keep that promise — and to the next government making it a slow news day, most days!

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  2. "Liquid Gold" by John Calvert has lots of details about IPP contracts.

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  3. Have I got this right?

    Total BC Provincial Debt (est 2017) $70 Billion
    Total Contractual Obligations $102.8 Billion
    Total $172.8 Billion

    http://www.fin.gov.bc.ca/ocg/pa/13_14/Contractual_Obligations.pdf

    IPP power purchases make up more than half of the contractual obligations.

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    Replies
    1. The Finance Ministry of the BC government estimates that "total provincial debt" will grow from $63.8 billion at March 2015 to $70.4 billion at March 2018. (Page 35 of Budget and Fiscal Plan 2015/16-2017/18).

      Not constrained by fact or truth, the Premier recently claimed BC Liberals are paying down debt by a billion dollars.

      Contractual Obligations are counted separately even though a large part of the $102.8 billion obligation is for buildings, bridges, roadways and other capital projects. More than half ($59.5 billion) relates to commitments of BC Hydro, nearly all for Independent power producer energy purchase agreements. Had BC Hydro borrowed money - they would have borrowed at lower interest rates - and constructed generating facilities, the borrowings would have been included in "total provincial debt". Therefore it is dishonest for Liberals to exclude Contractual obligations from conversations about debt.

      This government deceit is aided by pundits and shills in the media who pretend not to notice that debt is far worse than claimed. My recent example of Gary Mason's work at the Globe and Mail is a prime example. However, most of the corporate media tribe, acting out of self-interest, do the same.

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  4. Note from Norm: Guy in Victoria offered this comment in a preceding article. It applies equally well here so I add it again:

    Norm, the fantasy never stops when it comes to Christy Clark. In Kelowna yesterday she spread the news to her favourite group... the Chamber of Commerce:
    " Clark told the sold-out audience the budget allows for a savings of $1 billion, which the government will use to pay down the province's debt.
    "There are those, too, many of whom are in the opposition, who say we should really just grow government by a billion dollars. Why not just spend that money and make government bigger, build it into the budget, and make it bigger every year?" said Clark.
    She said paying down the debt will allow the next generation to make sound financial decisions because they aren't labouring under the burden of debt we've left for them."

    Did you get that..... nothing short of 1 BILLION..... and no one questions her.

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  5. great interview! really lays out the real facts around the budget and the assumptions of government, like projecting a one year 18% increase in personal income tax and skimming 3.6 billion from the crown corporations.

    Can't tell you what a welcome contrast this is to the MSM drivel about a balanced budget.
    ---otr

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