LETTERS: Status quo benefits few

Editor: Re: Coalitions kill each other, Dec. 6 column.


Re: Coalitions kill each other, Dec. 6 column.

In his recent column, Tom Fletcher declares that he does not like any form of the proportional representation (PR) voting system, or the transitional taxpayer funding of political parties recently put in place by the new NDP government.

Based on his comments, you have to assume he prefers the current system of first-past-the-post (FPTP) and political contribution rules. So, Tom prefers the frequent FPTP result where less than 40 per cent of voters elect a government and declare a premier that completely dominates all decision-making.

Many FPTP advocates tout such governments as “stable”, but once elected, they are stable in a way similar to how current Russian and Chinese governments are “stable”. No dissent tolerated, one group makes all the decisions.

Today, in B.C., we have the NDP and the Greens, together representing 60 per cent of voters, actively discussing most initiatives. Even the BC Liberals get drawn into these discussions as the Greens and BC Liberals can defeat the NDP on any vote or on a non-confidence issue.

Wow, what a terrible “unstable” situation we have, all political parties actually debating issues and finding common ground for the betterment of all citizens!

On the funding side, we’ve seen what happens when private interests – business, unions, developers – dominate political funding and then in return, demand action on their specific issues. These private interests have dominated the provincial political agenda for years, and in Surrey, huge contributions from the development community have resulted in one party controlling all council seats for the last two elections. We’ve all witnessed the results.

In the U.S., 0.086 per cent of all voters – less than a tenth of a per cent – donate 50 per cent of all political funding. Worse, 2/100 of one per cent of voters contribute 15 per cent of all funding.

The recent changes to U.S. tax law, with huge benefits to the wealthy but opposed by 70 per cent of the population, are considered payback to this very small, but wealthy and influential percentage of the population.

Canada has stronger laws controlling political donations, but the tactics and results are similar.

Take a wild guess who doesn’t want these two systems to change; those parties and their followers that believe they can be elected under FPTP, and those who want to influence government.

No system is perfect, but, Tom, I’ll take my chances that PR results in better decisions that a greater percentage of the population supports, and I’m happy to contribute a few of my tax dollars to ensure that all political parties can be heard and not just those with wealthy backers.

Bob Campbell, Surrey

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Surrey school district student enrolment down from projections

‘That’s not something I can say in my time in Surrey, I have ever said at the board table’: superintendent

White Rock acupuncturist suspended for ‘scare tactics, excessive fees’

30-day suspension for Jun Hua (Davy) Hua issued Aug. 18

Mother-daughter charged in 2017 torched-SUV killing in South Surrey now allowed contact

Judge grants Manjit Kaur Deo permission to connect with Inderdeep Kaur Deo through a lawyer

Latimer Road the latest Surrey school to report COVID-19 exposure

Fraser Health has created a new webpage listing COVID-19 cases in schools

PHOTOS: One injured in shooting on South Surrey-Langley border

Shots reported near 194 Street and 34 Avenue, burned-out vehicle found in 18100-block of 12 Avenue

3 new deaths due to COVID-19 in B.C., 139 new cases

B.C. confirms 40 ‘historic cases,’ as well

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dies at 87

The court’s second female justice, died Friday at her home in Washington

Emaciated grizzly found dead on central B.C. coast as low salmon count sparks concern

Grizzly was found on Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw territory in Smith Inlet, 60K north of Port Hardy

VIDEO: B.C. to launch mouth-rinse COVID-19 test for kids

Test involves swishing and gargling saline in mouth and no deep-nasal swab

Young Canadians have curtailed vaping during pandemic, survey finds

The survey funded by Heart & Stroke also found the decrease in vaping frequency is most notable in British Columbia and Ontario

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

B.C. teachers file Labour Relations Board application over COVID-19 classroom concerns

The application comes as B.C.’s second week of the new school year comes to a close

CHARTS: Beyond Metro Vancouver, COVID-19 cases in B.C. haven’t increased much recently

COVID-19 case counts outside of Metro Vancouver have been level since July

70-year-old punched in the head in dispute over disability parking space in Nanaimo

Senior’s turban knocked off in incident at mall parking lot

Most Read