Tuesday, May 10, 2005

BC NDP & Liberals, one in the same?

Surprise! Surprise! It's not just the end of polarized politics in BC, it's the end of choice, with the two main parties sharing everything---including party colours! The BC office just released its comprehensive platform costing analysis of the province's two major parties. What's the conclusion? Well the NDP and the Liberals want to go to power without telling taxpayers how much their promises will cost. A total of 118 platform promises are made with no dollar figures attached.

For example, the NDP fail to include the cost to taxpayers to make BC Ferries a crown coporation again---great idea, they performed so well the last time they were under the politicians thumb! And the Liberals forgot to include the cost to double the number of hybrid vehicles in the government's fleet or to create the Spirit Bear Conservancy or the Provincial Salmon Agency--(let's hope its not modelled after the federal deparment of Fisheries and Oceans)!

But the Liberal/NDP common ground extends beyond their mutual lack of costing, it's also on the policy front. Here's a sampling of the NDP/Liberal common ground: tuition (NDP freeze, Liberal cap to rate of inflation), money for surgery wait times (NDP $75 million, Liberal's $100 million), transtional housing (NDP $16 million, Liberal's $42 million), child care (NDP have no specific dollar amount but commit to creating universal child program, the Liberals commit to more child care with money from the federal deal).

Both promise more money for policing, parks, recruitment of nurses, apprenticeship training, English as a second language training, post-secondary institutions, industry specific tax cuts (read:industry wide corporate welfare), regional development, women escaping violence, children at risk and librarians.

While both the NDP and Liberals maneouver to out-spend each other for the next seven days, taxpayers should be preparing for some sober post-election news....

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