The NDP are holding a post-mortem conference to evaluate what went wrong; perhaps a few comments from an ex-member may help.
First, the electoral system is seriously faulty and has been widely known to be so for decades; nothing has been done. No assertion was made by the NDP in the election that the system would be changed as a first order of business, so this translated into—‘We aren’t really bothered’, and 48 per cent of voters stayed at home.
Then, it is glaringly obvious that to fund parties by private donations allows the wealthiest donors to set and control party policy — for why else would they part with large sums of money if not for a pay-back?
The result is that parties are essentially bought by the highest bidders; indeed, tax-payers unwittingly support this process in the form of the rebates on donations. Not good enough.
And of course, large numbers of voters (not just NDP) are choked to discover that 80 per cent of the $4.6 billion interest charges on the B.C. government are now off-budget; they refer to P3s and other private deals with corporations which are treated as privileged information.
Which touches on the whole question of why all our governments now borrow their money at enormous cost from the private banking sector anyway, when our own national bank which was created and chartered specifically to do just that — at minute cost as a public utility — has been relegated to the sidelines for nearly 40 years now, and only supplies credit for issues of cash currency — a mere three per cent of all borrowing.
Dead silence surrounds this matter, and neither candidate at Knox United all-candidates meeting even attempted to answer my question: “Why? What benefits have accrued?” and professed to not understand it.
By essentially ignoring these matters — probably the most explosive in politics today — the NDP have justifiably been clobbered, and without some radical re-thinking, that verdict will recur.