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COMMENTARY · 14th December 2012
Merv Ritchie
Update Threat worked, BC Court suddenly decides to allow Chinese workers without debate

Two very important and distinctive events occurred yesterday. BC had their credit rating reduced from “Triple A Stable” to “Triple A Negative” and the Premier of BC reaffirmed the fantastic opportunities available if BC pursues the LNG export proposals. All this while the Enbridge final National Energy Board Joint Review Panel hearings were taking place in Prince Rupert. It was as blatant cause and effect example of mobster tactics.

“There are two superpowers in the world today in my opinion. There’s the United States, and there’s Moody’s Bond Rating Service. The United States can destroy you by dropping bombs, and Moody’s can destroy you by downgrading your bonds. And believe me, it’s not clear sometimes who’s more powerful.” stated New York Times columnist Thomas L. Friedman during a PBS interview.

Attorney General Shirley Bond stated the credit rating change is a warning sign. Damn straight it was. Moody's assistant vice-president Jennifer Wong was responsible for this warning to British Columbia. She may as well have said, ‘Don’t you dare do anything to mess with the exports of anything to China or we will crush you with debt.’

Nothing has happened to worsen the financial well being of British Columbia. In fact all the recent mining and exploration activity, including the finishing of the new electrical grid to the Northwest should hike the credit rating. The only issue, which has legs is the review, allowed by the courts, challenging the legitimacy of the Chinese workers in Tumbler Ridge.

Jennifer Wong has taken her orders and delivered the threat. Should the BC Courts interfere with these Chinese plans to use their cheap labour in BC it will have repercussions. China also has plans for Chinese labour in the construction of the proposed pipelines. A precedent against this cheap labour cannot be set.

The government of BC has a lot to worry about. They have invested a lot of political capital and real capital in the rush to service China. The dilemma they face is the Chinese economy is collapsing. BC is once again 20 years too late.

Read more here and more Chinese economic details here

The Natural gas enterprise is also collapsing, that which Premier Clark spoke passionately in support of during her year end recollections. As fracking is at the foundation of BC’s surge in Natural Gas production, without fracking the industry will cease. To conduct fracking requires an ever increasing use of BC’s fresh water. Although the industry claims the chemicals they pump underground are so deep they cannot pollute the ground water, the evidence demonstrates the opposite is true. And further, as was seen recently by the loss of the hotsprings after the 7.7 magnitude earthquake on Haida Gwaii, earthquakes open, and close, extremely deep geological formations. Fracking sites are accompanied by numerous small earthquakes, which similarly provides the potential for the release of the fracking chemicals into ground water.

Much more on Fracking here

The production is simply unsustainable and will soon be put to a full stop.

The pricing of Natural gas has also fallen substantially as many other jurisdictions in the world are discovering they too can employ fracking to achieve the same results. To add to the perception of troubles for China, yesterday the City of Vancouver issued a proclomation to show their support for those expressly opposed to tankers and oil pipelines. All of this has China concerned that the lowly Province of BC might prove to be a difficult problem to overcome.

Attorney General Shirley Bond, who is not just in charge of the Courts, but also the finances as Vice Chair of the Treasury Board, was not missing anything when she stated the credit rating change is a warning sign. One must ask the important questions. How are the governments actually “managed”.
misinformation detracts from credibility.
Comment by martin caine on 17th December 2012
In your commentary of Dec 14 you write: “Nothing has happened to worsen the financial well being of British Columbia.” I would like to bring to your attention a news release from the BC NDP of the same day where they state that “New Democrat finance critic Bruce Ralston noted Moody’s Investors Service’s credit downgrade on Wednesday for BC Hydro is further cause for alarm. He said the agency sees the government as an extension of the crown corporation, essentially because government guarantees the debt.”
I am a big fan of your writing and so would like to point out that misinformation detracts from credibility.
Another point, if I may, you also wrote “She may as well have said, ‘Don’t you dare do anything to mess with the exports of anything to China or we will crush you with debt’.”, and then you transpose this made up threat to the headline and the update. I would like to comment that conjecture (she may as well have said) does not become fact just because it is in the headline.