Three months to the next election and the mudslinging is already well under way. As a high school social studies teacher, I do my best to encourage my students to observe the process, take an interest in the issues and hopefully commit to taking part in the process once they reach the age of 18.
It is very disheartening reading the comments from Mr. Olsen, who claims he wants to “discuss the issues,” but resorts to throwing out seemingly random bits of information that are not connected and leave me wondering what issue he is actually trying to deal with.
Is Mr. Olsen suggesting that Mr. Foster and/or the Liberals are responsible for the employment numbers in the province?
I am sure whatever statistics exist, both sides can use them to support their argument, but do we really want to discuss numbers or actually have a meaningful discussion about employment trends in the province?
Is it the governing party’s responsibility when the global economy goes south?
Is it their responsibility when revenues from natural gas and other resources are substantially lower that it was five years ago due to a world wide decrease in demand?
Is it the government’s responsibility when more and more companies, in order to remain competitive, hire part-time workers at a much lower cost than full-time employees with benefits?
Let’s see if we can have some faith restored in politicians and the political process itself.
How about Mr. Olsen and the NDP present us with some real alternatives?
Mr. Olsen says that education, health, poverty, seniors, and the environment are all priorities that need more money. Where is that money going to come from?
Are there some new efficiencies he is proposing?
Are there other services he is prepared to cut? Are they planning a significant tax increase to cover new spending or is the plan for an even larger debt?
Personally, I think Mr. Foster has done a very good job for the Vernon area during his term as a first time MLA. Certainly not the easiest time to enter politics on the provincial stage, but he has managed to have several local issues dealt with in a positive way.
I would suggest it isn’t very common for a first-time MLA to push his own well-entrenched party to deal with local concerns such as opening up additional beds in our hospital.
I think the Liberals need a time out to regroup and refocus. They have been in power too long in my opinion. However, I do hope Mr. Foster does get re-elected as I do believe he has done a commendable job under very difficult circumstances.