The Big Brotherhood

A provincial New Democrat staffer will soon be vetting messages sent between constituency association presidents on a private email list established for their use. The decision was made after we obtained a posting from that list in which Abbotsford-Mission president Lynn Perrin asked the party's oversight committee to investigate "the salary/honorarium of President Moe Sihota IMMEDIATELY." That stipend, which is being paid by the party using what it has described as a "generous, earmarked gift from the labour movement," has become a flashpoint for dissent against New Democrat leader Carole James. As a result of the leak, party treasurer Bob Smit has announced "as soon as possible, provincial office will hire the services of an ISP to host the list, and the list will become moderated. That means each post will be pre-approved before it goes to the list by a staff person."

When reached via phone, Mr. Smits wouldn't comment on that announcement because its "internal party material." The following is a complete copy of his email, which was obtained by Public Eye.


I was informed today that sadly, someone on the list has abused the rights of everyone else on the list by forwarding copies of some posts to Sean Holman.

From the beginning, this list has been hosted on my personal server, paid for entirely by me, and it has never been censored. All it has blocked are people not subscribed to the list, and those posts with CC or other attachments that lead to email loops.

This abuse, however, means that we simply cannot carry on as before.

Accordingly, as soon as possible, provincial office will hire the services of an ISP to host the list, and the list will become moderated. That means each post will be pre-approved before it goes to the list by a staff person.

I'm deeply disappointed in whoever has caused this to occur. With the freedom to exchange information by email goes the responsibility to keep internal party discussions internal.

Robert Smits Treasurer, BC NDP


The "leadership" of the NDP really are losing it. Maybe if they were actually listening to the "internal party discussions" that members are trying to have and the issues they are raising, the dirty laundry would not be getting aired outside of their circle. The NDP's own members, supporters and activists have had enough.

I think Carole and the NDP silver backs should start getting it - you are now being viewed as your worst horror, as out of touch, as inaccessible and as bent on centralized control and poor decision-making as the BC Liberals. These are all the death knells of every leader & party.

It is time for a full leadership convention. People will either support Carole, or they won't. If the NDP wants to keep "democrat" as the most important part of their name, they better realize there is a radical need for change if the party is to survive & thrive. BC needs this to happen.

From what I have observed, MANY organizations are dying slow & painful deaths because the Boomers are intent on keeping the control, silencing & excluding new & younger voices & they are all hovering on the brink of oblivion because of it and only their generational hubris prevents them from getting it.

It's time for everyone to do the right thing for the party, not for the individual personal egos. Full leadership convention, de-centralize and become a more inclusive & collaborative organization. Get new executive leadership in. The writing is on the wall, read it, or weep. The leadership of the NDP will have only itself to blame for what will happen in the next election, as they did in the last one. The NDP should have had a majority in 2009 & they blew it and they are still doing that. Mediocrity, or worse and old boy, old school tactics, are not going to win in 2013. It's time for radical change and a dramatic shift in thinking and leadership for a new century of politics in BC.

I sure can't disagree with BC Liberals suck. If the lady stays on and blows the next election, I figure the party will dry up and blow away leaving the Liberals to continue selling off anything they can get their hands on

It is this very style of leadership that has left the NDP devoid of ideas and completely unable to form a progressive government.

The trade union bureauctrats' financing of Moe Sihota's new salary appears to be an attempt to regain control of the NDP. If they are successful, they will send the NDP into oblivion for another 3 terms.

I think Rush Limbaugh couldn't come up with a better "Operation Chaos"... really. Seriously.

I also think Gordon Campbell's reputation as a strategic mind is firmly cemented - at a time when the BCLibs are trying to find SOMEBODY to run for Premier (Mary Polak the "Spitfire"/Human Hornet is OUT, Alise Mills out, Kevvy Falcon's new dad feet getting colder), Carole Taylor 99% OUT, Christy Clark not flying like a sailplane in a draft & Diane Watts being a weathervane; the focus is on the BCNDP. Again finding the BCNDP in OPERATION: Indignitly Infighting Imploding Indefinitely. Karl Rove and Stephen Harper's brilliant Canuck Conservateurs have nothing on this guy Gordo! After all, the BCNDP should make a plan... and stick to it to resolve this problem if they want to compete.

Finally thinking out loud to see what sticks Joy MacPhail can flail all she wants on CKNW (shortly after 3:30 PM today) for Carole James, but losing two elections is losing two elections. I've read about this Aussie dude Kim Beazley who had the same problem. Eventually a geek named Kevin Rudd replaced Kim and took the W.

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