Common Sense Canadian

Rafe Mair Video: Liberals Bankrupting BC with $171 Billion Debt Legacy

PostedMay 12, 2013 by in BC

Former Socred Cabinet Minster Rafe Mair tells it like it is in this powerhouse speech on April 24 in Merritt, at the outset of the BC election campaign. Mair minces no words, zeroing in on the BC Liberals’ real economic record, which stands in stark contrast to the one being presented by Christy Clark throughout her campaign.

Christy Clark has on the side of her bus, ‘Debt Free BC’. We owe $171 Billion dollars! Since the Liberals came to power, our per capita share of debt has gone from a little over $5,000 to $40,000 – every man, woman and child…Ask the folks in Greece or in Cyrpus or in Italy what happens when the day of reckoning comes. And the day of reckoning is going to come with this.

Throughout the emotional 10 min address, Mair speaks of his concern for today’s youth and future generations. “We have now a situation in British Columbia that keeps me from shutting my mouth. I can’t do it – not as an old man. I see the country literally at a watershed. I see the province at a point where if proper decisions are not made promptly, we’re condemning our children and grandchildren to eternal debt.” Required viewing for all British Columbians on the eve of the May 14 election.


About the Author

Damien Gillis

Damien Gillis is a Vancouver-based documentary filmmaker with a focus on environmental and social justice issues - especially relating to water, energy, and saving Canada's wild salmon - working with many environmental organizations in BC and around the world. He is the co-founder, along with Rafe Mair, of The Common Sense Canadian, and a board member of both the BC Environmental Network and the Haig-Brown Institute.


    Marilyn Rombough

    Why oh why didn’t we listen to Rafe?


    Saturday, 18 May 2013 08:17 posted by Bill

    Interesting that Raif has a “say no to tankers” sweater.

    So where does he think the money is going to come from to pay off the debt. The large corporations. Dreamer

    The majority of the debt was incurred during the recession.

    Tuesday, 14 May 2013 17:52 posted by erik

    A few years ago the “penny” should have dropped for BC citizens.

    When Mcquarie International was unable to secure financial backing for the new Port Mann bridge folks were given the evidence that either the financial agent of government choice or the BC government itself, or both, were not good credit risks.

    It is way past due for people to connect the financial dots.

    Monday, 13 May 2013 20:42 posted by erik

    Oh dear, Marcel. You need to refer to better sources.
    The official Government report for fiscal 2011/12 ( a year old now) reported “The Provincial Debt — of $50.193 billion. Other liabilities stood at $20.165 billion. This category has been increasing from $15 billion in 2004. It could be charterized as “credit card debt” that never gets paid out becoming in reality “long-term” debt.
    At the same time the category of “Contingencies and Contractual Obligations” came in at $96.374 billion as reported by the Auditor General (P 74, Summary Financial Statements).
    These totals will be at least the same or greater after one more year of an operating deficit. The government has been pretending that 25-35 year P3 and IPP contracts are not realy BC long-term debts. If true I see no one else volunteering.
    The BC Hydro regulatory accounts are conveniently counted as assets as they are recievables. The assets now top $4 billion but since they are recievables for Hydro you need to ask the question from whom. They are recievables from ratepayers (debt) and the total is increasing rapidly. Should Hydro wish to cover its cash needs it would have to immediately increase customer rates 40%.

    Monday, 13 May 2013 12:15 posted by Damien Gillis

    These numbers come straight from the Auditor General and they are CORRECT, Marcel. You’re talking conventional debt. This figure includes the additional $100 Billion in hidden “taxpayer obligations” piled on the shoulders of British Columbians by this government. More required reading for you: and

    Hard to believe, I know, Marcel. That’s partly why they’ve largely gotten away with it…so far…

    Monday, 13 May 2013 12:00 posted by Marcel

    The numbers are wrong. 171 billion I don’t think so more like 38.8 billion


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