Is Vision's Green + Labour marriage on the rocks?

Post by Mike Klassen in

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tzeporah berman + gregor robertson
Tzeporah Berman & Gregor Robertson

Today's announcement by one of BC's leading environmentalists that she is disavowing any connection to BC's opposition NDP party has widened a fissure that exists between the labour and green camps within the Vision Vancouver organization.

In an email to NDP leader Carole James environmentalist Tzeporah Berman wrote, "You have put politicking before the planet in the most hypocritical fashion."

Berman and another Vision backer, PR expert Jim Hoggan is also taking his lumps from angry NDPers. readers will remember Hoggan from the Olympic Village public relations $60,000 contract that subverted the City of Vancouver's procurement rules.

Tzeporah Berman is seen as a great friend of the Vision Vancouver party, and she even boasted about campaigning last year for her friend Gregor Robertson. In recent weeks Berman has been championing pro-Independent Power policies (IPPs) the BC Liberal government has put in place.

Hoggan is seen as a Gregor backer and a big green advocate. Hoggan started the influential DeSmogBlog which now has several writers hired to critique communications doled out by the energy industry. DSB have been one of the loudest voices against the concept of "clean coal" for example. Hoggan has been weighing in on the provincial campaign through the blog.

When you disagree with the NDP, be prepared for their supporters to attack and pillory you publicly. For example,'s story on the NDP trying to spike Major League Soccer by killing the BC Place reno received an angry response. Read the comments left on today's Sun story on Berman and you understand that the NDP will crush anyone, even lifelong supporters, who gets between them and power.

Here's a sample of the disparaging comments left by angry NDPers:

She lives in a very strange way, for a so "called environmentalist". Who does she and the greens and kidding? We all know what the NDP and liberals are all about. But the level of hypocrisy of the greens and environmentalists is just as bad.

Ms. Bermans picture shows her wearing a necklace and not one but two bracelets. I guess she needs to understand these products come from mining. Not mining for the good of society but just for her own personal use. Some environmentalist!!

This woman is knowledge of environmental issues are skewed. Obviously she does not know what she is talking about.

Maybe the NDP can stop pandering to nutters like Berman.

Of course she can think like that; she's rich. Probably drives a 4 door beemer SUV.

Over at 24 Hours Vancouver, Hoggan's financial donations to the BC Liberal Party are getting ink in the traditionally left-wing supporting paper:

...records show his foundation chairman and communications advisor James Hoggan is a frequent Liberal donor. The B.C. Liberal Party received six donations totaling $8,943 from James Hoggan and Associates from 2005 to 2008.

We should note that this donation over 3 years to the BC Liberal Party is about two-thirds the financial support Hoggan paid to Vision Vancouver over the same time period.

Vision Vancouver are known to be an uneasy (some say mistrustful) alliance of Green-leaning social enterprise advocates, and trade unionists. Even the Mayor's office is staffed by both Green and NDP types. Within Vision Big Labour has a powerful advocate in Geoff "Mayor" Meggs, who many deem the real power broker in the party. Andrea Reimer moved over from the Green Party in order to receive a spot on Vision's council slate, and Gregor Robertson has always seen as an outsider by the NDP mainstream.

When you look at Vision Vancouver close-up, you'll see that they've built a foundation on quicksand. The twin goals of environmental action and getting the NDP as the provincial government at any price are not always in sync. In fact, they're practically coming off the rails today with Berman's shot at Carole James.

Whether they win on May 12th or not, rest assured that the NDP will eventually settle a score with the Greens in their midst who they feel betrayed them.

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