Kitimat Plebicite


#1

Is there any news yet how the Kitimat vote went tonight?


#2

Kitimat plebiscite results on Enbridge’s northern gateway pipeline:

No: 58.5%
Yes: 41.5


#3

I heard that only 3000 voted. I’m not sure if that’s true or not.


#4

kitimat.ca/EN/meta/news/arch … oject.html


#5

Non Binding, doesnt matter. The only binding decision will be the conservatives decision to approve or perhaps help fund the pipeline.


#6

Pretty much what I keep telling people. It’s not up to us. It’s up to the power$ that be.


#7

[quote=“bubbasteve735”]

Pretty much what I keep telling people. It’s not up to us. It’s up to the power$ that be.[/quote]

You may both be right, but I prefer a different point of view. We often feel that things “happen”, because of people “more powerful” than we are. I get that. I think the people of Kitimat have offered us a different blueprint. Despite all the pressure, and all the enticements, they said “No, we cannot be bought.” The powers that be, in this case and many others, exist because people let them exist, through apathy, self interest, or ignorance. I think those factors have been eliminated here, because people “get it”, and the “powers that be” haven’t got a clue how to react to that. Hat’s off to the folks in Kitimat for a courageous stance. An example for others to follow…


#8

Only a third of the population voted and of that third, only 1793 said no…that is hardly convincing. For a town of approx 9000, that is not a very convincing argument.

This plebicite was a huge waste of money and many people in Kitimat agree since many stayed home.

Not only that, but it is not binding and I don’t think the federal government or Enbridge even care about this plebicite, especially one as unconvincing in stature as 1793 votes.


#9

Would be good to compare the number of eligible voters who voted for the current provincial and federal governments and compare the number of eligible voters in Kitimat.

58% would be a huge margin for a provincial or federal election.

BC Liberals received 44% of the vote last provincial election. 1.66 million votes of 4.4 million people. 37% of the people in BC voted, and of that 37%, only 44% voted for the BC Liberals.

So yeah, does the plebiscite represent the ‘will’ of the people of Kitimat? 20% of the people of Kitimat said no.

Does electing the BC Liberal government represent the ‘will’ of the people of BC? 18% of the people of BC said yes to the BC Liberals?


#10

[quote=“MiG”]Would be good to compare the number of eligible voters who voted for the current provincial and federal governments and compare the number of eligible voters in Kitimat.

58% would be a huge margin for a provincial or federal election.

BC Liberals received 44% of the vote last provincial election. 1.66 million votes of 4.4 million people. 37% of the people in BC voted, and of that 37%, only 44% voted for the BC Liberals.

So yeah, does the plebiscite represent the ‘will’ of the people of Kitimat? 20% of the people of Kitimat said no.

Does electing the BC Liberal government represent the ‘will’ of the people of BC? 18% of the people of BC said yes to the BC Liberals?[/quote]

I would say the people who didn’t vote don’t feel strongly about the issue. In this case a large portion of the population does not feel strongly against the proposition and therefore you must assume they are ok with it.

In the Provincial election again a large number of people did not feel strongly enough about ousting the Liberals, so they didn’t vote. Therefore it is the will of the people.

How’s that for spinning numbers?


#11

Spinning the numbers? Mig wasnt spinning anything he was making a comparison. 18% of the province voted for the liberals hardly a majority and yet we consider that a valid result for a majority government. Yourself included. Yet when you dont like the result its only 20% of people who were against it.

Seems rather hypocritical to me. A clear majority in kitimat are against the pipeline and you can circlejerk around and spin the numbers any way you want. Facts are facts.

This is a non binding result so it doesnt matter if even if you were right, which you arent.


#12

According to this article 71% of eligible voters turned out which was better than the 56% who voted in the last municipal election.

And assuming that the non-voters don’t care one way or another doesn’t automatically put them in the camp of either side. They don’t care one way or another. Period.

thetyee.ca/News/2014/04/13/Kitim … ign=140414


#13

I am not arguing this because I don’t like the result…just that it was a total waste of time and money and will have no bearing on what happens in the end.

If I lived in Kitimat I probably would not have voted either…why waste my time when it is non-binding and will have not effect anyways?


#14

[quote=“jesus”]Spinning the numbers? Mig wasnt spinning anything he was making a comparison. 18% of the province voted for the liberals hardly a majority and yet we consider that a valid result for a majority government. Yourself included. Yet when you dont like the result its only 20% of people who were against it.

Seems rather hypocritical to me. A clear majority in kitimat are against the pipeline and you can circlejerk around and spin the numbers any way you want. Facts are facts.

This is a non binding result so it doesnt matter if even if you were right, which you arent.[/quote]

You missed it.

I was talking about me spinning the numbers to validate an argument.


#15

71% of eligible voters cast a ballot? That’s rather high.

What was the turnout in the last provincial election?

[quote=“crazy Horse”] the Provincial election again a large number of people did not feel strongly enough about ousting the Liberals, so they didn’t vote. Therefore it is the will of the people.

How’s that for spinning numbers?[/quote]

Good try. But you know more people voted against the Liberals than for them, right?


#16

[quote=“MiG”]

Good try. But you know more people voted against the Liberals than for them, right?[/quote]

That isn’t unusual.

My point is simply this; The people who do not participate in a vote are saying something loud and clear. And that is “I don’t care”. And if you don’t care, then I can spin that as “I don’t care if they build this pipeline”, or “I don’t care if Christie is re-elected”. It’s easier to spin that than “I don’t care enough to vote, but I sure am against that pipeline”. Makes no sense.

I said before, this is no more than me putting a spin on the turnout numbers (somewhat tongue in cheek) but I think there is some truth to it.


#17

Well, apparently the turnout numbers were in the 70% range? That’s pretty high, isn’t it?


#18

My supervisor used to say that people who didn’t bother to vote shouldn’t b*tch about what happens later.

I agree.

So when I look at the voter turnout, I usually see it as how many eligible electors actually give a damn.


#19

[quote=“MiG”]
Good try. But you know more people voted against the Liberals than for them, right?[/quote]

I’m not sure what point you’re trying to make here. The whole “look how small the majority is” line doesn’t make all that much sense when it can just be flipped on its head. Because you know more people voted against the NDP than for them, right? And the greens. And every other party but the Liberals. As crazy Horse, I think, was suggesting, you can flip the percentages to fit the side you want to support. The Liberals gained seats while the NDP who lost them–that must mean that ‘the people’ support the Liberals, right? But then someone points out that Christy Clark couldn’t win in the first riding she chose, which is clearly a message from British Columbians that they don’t want her as Premier. And around and around it goes.

Again, it may be that the argument is going over my head.

That aside–I tend to agree with teacher and others who have written in favour of action, however ineffective we worry it may be, rather than apathy. Raise your hand and be counted–whatever side of the issue you are on.

If you don’t participate in protests, if you don’t vote, if you don’t write your MP or MLA–whatever you might think privately or write on a forum–you’re saying to the powers that be that you don’t care.

In the case of the Kitimat plebiscite, the people who didn’t vote don’t have an official opinion. It doesn’t mean they support the pipeline. It doesn’t mean they oppose it. Frankly, I’d argue that it means whatever they think doesn’t matter very much. The people that matter, though–those people who cared enough to participate in their democracy–they sent a very clear message.


#20

I am not sure if voting or not voting means you give a damn. I have sometimes voted and I didn’t really give a damn at all because I knew it wouldn’t matter who was elected. I wanted my favourite to win of course, but in the '90s we knew the Liberals were going to win federally and the Reform guy was going to win locally so what did it really matter if I took a few minutes out of my day to go and vote (which I did). In the '80s, we knew the Socreds would win provincially, and the NDP would win locally so what did it matter if I took a few minutes of my day to go and vote (which I did). Even in 2013, we knew that Jennifer Rice was going to win locally and we knew that however we voted in this riding it would have no bearing on the outcome provincially so what did it really matter if I took a few minutes out of my day to go and vote (which I did).

I come from an upbringing where voting is ingrained. I just do it because - well - I’m supposed to vote (I guess).

But not everybody grew up like I did and not everybody sees the system the same way I do or values the democratic process the way most of us do.

In Kitimat 71% of the people felt that their voice needed to be heard on a specific issue, and binding or not, the vote is significant. Already on the news there is talk of proposing alternate routes including Prince Rupert (and how do we respond) and pushing Kinder Morgan which I am sure will make Burnaby an interesting battleground.

But getting back to the 29% of the people in Kitimat who didn’t vote, I would be very curious to know who those people are. Some of those people may no longer live in Kitimat. Some may be on holiday or were sick or had some family emergency. That may take care of a few of the 1000 or so who didn’t vote. But what of the rest? Do they actually not give a damn or do they come from some economic, social, educational background that makes voting or even getting out to vote difficult?

The poor are going to have a harder time getting out to vote compared to someone with the means to find a way to the polling station. A single parent with a couple of pre-schoolers is going to have a harder time getting to the polling booth compared to others. The under-educated are going to have a harder time understanding the issues or even the process of getting out to vote compared to the more educated.

And there are lots of people who just don’t give a damn and not just because they don’t care whether or not there is a pipeline. They just don’t care because they haven’t bought into the system.

My guess though, and of course it is only a guess, if we found a way to hear the voices of those 29% who didn’t vote, their votes would likely mirror the 71% who did vote.

But I certainly agree with eccentric. If people are going to be heard, they have to do something. Binding or not, the people of Kitimat sent a message and I say good for them.