A week or so ago, I pointed out several examples of major problems with the B.C. Liberals’ fiscal record through their term of office.
It elicited a spirited, if not fully accurate, defence from K. Wells, who chose to go on the offensive and attack the NDP record of the 1990s (NDP Had Bad Moments Too, The Daily News, Jan. 5). Unfortunately, the response was characterized by misrepresentation and half-truths.
For example, Wells claims that B.C.’s unemployment rate during the 1990s, when the NDP was last in office, was 15 per cent.
The truth is that the province’s unemployment rate came down steadily over this period, from a high of 10.2 per cent in 1992 to a low of 7.2 per cent in 2000.
Continuing in the truth-bending manner of many Liberal apologists, Wells also blamed undefined NDP policies for an exodus of rural doctors 15 years ago. As studies have shown, the issue of attracting and retaining rural medical professionals is far more complex than playing a simple, partisan blame game.
Health care in the rural hinterland, including availability of doctors, continues to be a major concern after 12 years of B.C. Liberal government. In fact, the B.C. Medical Association currently estimates that 150,000 British Columbians cannot find a family doctor, up from 100,000 in 2000, including, as Wells must know, many Kamloops residents.
Grudgingly, admitting that the HST debacle was not the B.C. Liberal party’s “brightest moment,” Wells’ letter provides support for Daily News editor Robert Koopmans’ recent musing about the slippery nature of truth.
It shoehorns facts to fit a blatantly partisan agenda. While happy to dredge up half-truths about the NDP’s term in office, he neglects to mention much worse conduct associated with the B.C. Liberals.
For example, the ongoing Liberal legerdemain over the B.C. Rail affair and its subsequent coverup completely escapes Wells’ attention.
Too bad because that particular “gate” is still wide open. In that regard, I would suggest to K. Wells that it’s not Glen, it’s the other Clark, who has a lot more to worry about in May 2013.