EDITORIAL – Why trashing the NDP’s budget is the proper thing to do

(Image: Screen grab, BC Hansard)

An editorial by Mel Rothenburger

AS I WATCHED Peter Milobar trash the NDP’s budget this week, two things came to mind.

One was that the Kamloops-North Thompson MLA and opposition finance critic has mastered the indignant eloquence required to perform well in the Legislature.

The other was that he was doing exactly what he’s supposed to do — show the government no mercy.

That assessment wasn’t shared by a friend of mine who also watched the budget proceedings. His view is that it was just more of what’s wrong with our political system — partisan politics aimed at scoring points instead of working together for the common good.

His opinion is shared by many but our Parliamentary system is adversarial by nature and design.

The party system provides stability and avoids revolving door governments, which were the norm before independent representatives coalesced into parties.

Parties that don’t win enough seats to form government are called “opposition” parties for a reason. They don’t oppose the government out of spite or just for cheap politics — they do it because it’s their duty.

So, yes, there were some good things in the budget. It focused heavily on social issues, which is a priority with the public right now. More money for healthcare and so on. A little here, a little there.

It’s the job of the government to brag. But it’s not the job of opposition parties to praise the government. It’s their job to challenge. “Critics” criticize.

So Milobar weighed in, blasting away at the budget for not being enough of this and that, and chastising the NDP for being long on talk and short on action.

Yesterday, Liberal leader Kevin Falcon took over, calling the budget “a huge disappointment for British Columbians, with record high debt and projected deficits coupled with record low results.”

After the rhetoric, the budget will eventually wind its way through the process and be adopted, and the system will have worked as it should.

I’m Mel Rothenburger, the Armchair Mayor.

Mel Rothenburger is a former mayor of Kamloops, alternate TNRD director and a retired newspaper editor. He is a regular contributor to CFJC Today, publishes the opinion website, and is a recipient of the Jack Webster Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award. He can be reached at

About Mel Rothenburger (9489 Articles) is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

3 Comments on EDITORIAL – Why trashing the NDP’s budget is the proper thing to do

  1. Trashing – really – a term being used to describe what is supposed to be honest debate and discussion about what could be best for citizens in BC.
    And a few days after pink shirt day. Just what our young people really need to see to inspire them to be kind and caring to each other. And yes there are young people on school tours.
    Politics has reached a new low of attack and trash rather than trying to work for the people here to make things better for all. Sorry that does not make for exciting articles.
    I applaud Todd Stone for his recent write up on his new members bill about emergency funding. Hopefully it will be dealt with civilly
    in the legislation. He just outlined what he felt was needed and did indicate there had not been change for 50 years so yes his party was in power for a good portion of that time. But it does need to get done and not drop of the agenda
    What BC citizens need and want is for government to get things done and stop wasting my tax $$$ using legislature time trashing each other. And please do not use parliamentary history of what used to be – that was men – this is 2023.
    PS I visited the BC Legislature in 1968. I was 18. I still remember describing it to my mom.
    Some MLAs were sitting with feet
    on their desks, some reading the newspaper, some kept the pages busy passing notes. A number were not even physically present. I was not impressed.
    And PS – I have never minded paying my taxes. I do mind that some people do not pay their taxes and that some companies gouge citizens and that led to more costs and tax $$ for all.

  2. David Monsees // March 2, 2023 at 7:08 AM // Reply

    The NDP obviously over taxed us last year ( in order to have such a monstrous excess available) There were no windfalls. Why did they not adjust our taxes lower to a fair and honest amount to cover their needs. Instead, they are again over-charging us for the coming year, and not only that, increasing the budget for money we don’t yet have. In other words, they are spending what they don’t have, and will have to gouge us even further for their dream world. Their is only so much available funds to spend….ask any pensioner. The NDP are sucking us dry. The increase of the coming carbon tax now, is going to reverberate totally through every business in B.C. Not just the fuel, but heating fuel, groceries, salaries, medical costs. When they increase transportations costs, everything gets charged more. The NDP is killing our province in the name of working for the union workers, health care, and the homeless.

    • Mr. Monsees:
      I would like to know how did the NDP “over taxed” us last year.
      I would also like to know what a “fair and honest” amount of taxes to cover their (actually our) needs would look like in your opinion.
      So you know I am a small business owner struggling to keep going.

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