Wednesday, May 29, 2013

It may seem mundane, as opposed to the wild flurry of an election campaign, however it is a VERY important step to be ready for 2017

Al Siebring, Chair of the BC Conservative Party Policy Committee, sent an email out the other day.  It began by saying;
"Now that the election is out of the way, it's time to move on with more mundane Party business.  We have our Party's AGM coming up in Vernon in September.  Per Article 10 of the Party Bylaws, we are giving each CA an opportunity to provide input and amendments to our Party “Policy Document” in advance of the AGM."

I for one found that refreshing, and encouraging -- it also fit with something I had posted on this web-blog as well.  On Monday, I asked the question "Can you please tell me the differences between the Conservatives and the Liberals?", which I was delighted to see generated some conversation and dialogue. 
Some of the comments coming back included one from Sean who mentioned:
"... I think the person requesting this info would have liked to see a specific breakdown of the actual differences ... the differences are quite stark when you compare policies versus rhetoric." 
Sean is likely right on the mark, that said, I still think everything flows however from the 2 direct points which I made in the original post.  The BC Liberals -- and the NDP for that matter -- can say anything they like, however no elected member of either party is really accountable to the electorate.  They are ONLY accountable to the political party which they represent.
For REAL change to actually happen, there is going to have to be an acceptance that at times MLA's will have to vote against party line.  If a way is made available for the to happen, in a way that can be respectful, then this becomes a win-win for everyone ... everyone that is but those manipulating from the backrooms. 
Here's another snapshot from a comment made by Bob:
" ... we need to aim for a turn as the Opposition in 2017 as a training ground in preparation for governing in 2021 ... we need to compete with the statist party in those areas where they are winning the ideological competition with many citizens if we are to replace them ... we will have to produce some innovative policies using very conservative principles on issues such as poverty, education and health in a way that outshines their central-planning approach ..." 
Well indeed the leap for us to go from nowhere as a party, to government, was a hard one for most to swallow -- BUT it has been done elsewhere.  That said, getting MLA's in the legislature is the start needed to season a number of quality government ministers to take reins of government.
I like Bob's suggestion of having "innovative policies using very conservative principles" to deal with serious issues. 
We were right, in my opinion, to say that getting BC economy running, at full steam, would go a long way towards coming up with solutions to many of the "issues of poverty, education and health".  That said people need, and want, to see the steps that BC Conservatives will take to find them (solutions).
I am convinced we have individuals from every background and experience needed to come up with the pieces to connect our broad stroke ideas, with issues and problems we face as a province.  Now leadership at all levels of the party need to be open to hear possible solutions (workable or not) that can lead to real and workable policy.
(STAY WITH ME ... I'm headed directly to policy considerations, for the BC Conservative Party, in just a moment)

First though, let's take a look at another comment -- this one from Fred:
" ... a very important philosophical difference is that Conservatives believe that government should only be involved with those thing that individuals or business cannot do ... governments must be as small as possible ... will leave more money, but also more responsibility in the hands of the people. 
Liberals are becoming more and more socialistic in believing that they should tax all (as much as possible) and be in charge of re-distributing your tax dollar were they believe it to be beneficial ... do you want to be taxed little and be in charge of your own destiny or do you want to be taxed to the limit and be taken care of from cradle to grave by a small elite that believes itself to be superior to the general public ..." 
And one more concluding comment from Michael:
...  small, efficient government is key to the BC Conservatives. However, a complete sell off of government control is not always the answer. The wealth of this province in regards to resources belong to the people of the province for the benefit of the people of this province ... the mismanagement and sell off of BC's  wealth by the BC Liberals, will only serve to reward cronies and insiders at the long term expense of the average British Columbian ..." 
So again, as Al Siebring has stated, "it's time to move on with more mundane Party business". 
Are you living in the Kamloops, Thompson, Fraser Nicola region?  Do you have a policy suggestion you'd like to make?  Send them to me as soon as possible to  If you are living elsewhere in the province, make sure to contact your regional director, or someone at the local level in your Constituency Association.
Mr. Siebring has also asked that, in considering policy suggestions, we keep in mind that the provincial committee will be addressing broad policy statements in this review, not specific "platform issues."  Also ... note that as per instructions given from the floor of last years AGM, the Committee will be considering specific policies with respect to water management. 
While it may in fact seem mundane, as opposed to the wild flurry of activity during an election campaign, it is however a VERY important step to be ready for the 2017 campaign. 
It's also a step that many involved in the BC Liberal Party -- and the NDP -- really don't have the opportunity to share in.  At least in crafting, as we will be doing, the member driven platform that our party will be campaigning on. 
I'm Alan Forseth in Kamloops, with the thoughts of one conservative.  I look forward to hearing yours.
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