The Yukon Party has lost its way

Kevin Brewer Recently I read an article online reviewing reasons for the federal Conservatives losing power. The article stressed that the Conservatives lost control of the federal agenda and the conservative movement in Canada has basically been driven

COMMENTARY

Recently I read an article online reviewing reasons for the federal Conservatives losing power. The article stressed that the Conservatives lost control of the federal agenda and the conservative movement in Canada has basically been driven into the political wilderness.

For the first time in the living memory of most voters there is not a Conservative government at the helm of one of the four larger provinces, and no prospect that one will be elected anytime soon. Harper’s brand of conservatism was massively rejected in Atlantic Canada and rightly so. Harper basically ignored everyone east of Quebec and only those who were as determined as Danny Williams managed to get listened to in Ottawa.

Ontario and Alberta are homes to conflicted and divided Conservative houses. And as a Newfoundlander, once my fellow newfies go to the polls at the end of the month there is a strong probability that province’s current Tory government will also be ousted.

One has to question what the Conservatives have done across this country. Here in Yukon one has to really question what our “conservative” Yukon Party has really done. With record federal support payments and associated budgets the Yukon Party has failed to diversify the economy. It has failed to even present a strategy to create sustainability or for Yukoners to actually have a realistic strategic plan for economic development and growth.

With First Nations the record of positive relations with the Yukon Party has been nothing but dismal. The relationships are so bad that they have only resulted in the courts now setting the framework on how the government should live up to its side of the Umbrella Final Agreement and meanwhile sacrificed the exploration sector by creating an environment of regulatory uncertainty, confusing and extended permitting for projects, and continued process chaos.

Instead of being concerned and actually doing something about it, the Yukon Party under the leadership of Darrell Pasloski seem happy to belong to a welfare state where their activities remain solely dependent on the results of a bi-annual meeting “at the federal trough” where the amounts of the federal subsidies are determined. And meanwhile the bureaucracy grows, generating enough paper each day to keep a pulp and paper mill going and regulating the living daylights of the shattered remains of the private sector. The survivors in business dare not criticize, as their businesses are so dependent on the local trough to maintain their revenues.

I was once a believer of the Yukon Party. I raised funds for them, went to their events, and tried to work closely with them to better our society. But then I noticed they were just not listening to anything.

The arrogance of leadership has gotten worse, and it is now clear that it is time for a change in government within Yukon. Like the rest of the country, most of us have had enough of the Conservatives and locally the Yukon Party. As a result of their practices those of us who challenge them, like me, ultimately get black-listed and are driven out of Yukon to seek employment elsewhere.

We are not given full and fair opportunity to compete for positions or contracts. We are not on the sole-sourced contracts list that feed those who kiss the ground Yukon Party officials walk on. And despite our expertise being better than most, we are trampled over by an ongoing parade of work and jobs given to “expert cheechakos” or outside companies, as they obviously are better than us according to the gospel of the Yukon Party.

Kevin Brewer is an an unemployed geologist who still resides in Whitehorse.

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