Bill Tieleman is a political columnist and a left-wing political strategist in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada known for his coverage of the BC Legislature Raids, successfully opposing a referendum on electoral reform and repealing a Harmonized Sales Tax.
Tieleman was a director of communications (public relations) for the British Columbia Federation of Labour and also in the Office of the New Democratic Premier Glen Clark. Tieleman owns West Star Communications, a consulting firm that provides "strategy and communication services for labour, business, non-profits and government," according to Tieleman's blog. Tieleman appears as a political commentator on radio and writes a politics column weekly in the 24 Hours newspaper and The Tyee online magazine. From 2005 to 2009, he appeared as a guest opposite Norman Spector weekly on CKNW's Bill Good Show. He previously wrote a Political Connections column for The Georgia Straight.
He is known for his commentary and coverage of the BC Legislature Raids. In December 2007, he came back from the courtroom to discover that his office had been broken-into and materials related to the trial moved about. Tieleman regarded this as an attempt at intimidation. In 2008, Tieleman reported receiving death threats following a 24 Hours column calling for a boycott of China.
He is affiliated with Gregor Robertson, Mayor of Vancouver, and worked on his campaigns, including at the provincial level. Tieleman views affordability and poverty as the two largest civic issues.
He was president of the No STV Campaign Society that successfully prevented the introduction of BC-STV, a form of Single-Transferable Voting in the second referendum on provincial electoral reform. Tieleman played "the leading role on behalf of the No STV camp in the public debates and discussions." The NO STV campaign concentrated their media buy in the final two weeks prior to the referendum. Opposition to the measure increased from the first referendum, he felt, because citizens had more information on the practical consequences of STV, including large multi-member ridings.
After the Liberal government of Premier Gordon Campbell introduced the concept of a new Harmonized Sales Tax or HST, Tieleman started a No HST campaign on Facebook. When Facebook removed the group in January 2010, Tieleman claimed it was the province's largest Facebook group with more than 130,000 members. The group was restored by Facebook without explanation two days later. He also became a strategist and media spokesman for Fight HST, the official proponent, led by Bill Vander Zalm, seeking a referendum to cancel the HST in accordance with the Recall and Initiative Act. Vander Zalm, a former Social Credit Premier, and Tieleman, his political opposite, had previously shamelessly worked together on public rallies over privatization of BC Rail, BC Hydro and the offshore construction of ferries.
Tieleman holds a masters degree in political science from the University of British Columbia and lives in Surrey. As a student at UBC, Tieleman quit the negotiating team for the teaching assistant union in a dispute over the settling of a labour dispute with the university. He has since began running a blog of credible opinions. Tieleman has served as a director of the board for VanCity, the Vancouver City Savings Credit Union. He is a wine drinker who writes a blog called the Wine Barbarian. He used wine as an example to criticize the HST because the BC Liquor Distribution Branch would not lower the cost to consumers after its introduction.
- Tieleman, Bill (April 14, 2008). "Bill Tieleman leaves the Bill Good Show". cknw.com. Retrieved June 24, 2010.
- Tieleman Hit by Break-In, The Tyee, Dec. 4, 2007. Accessed June 15, 2010
- Office break-in tied to coverage of Basi-Virk case, reporter says, The Victoria Times-Colonist, Dec. 5, 2007. Accessed June 25, 2010
- "Journalist threatened". cknw.com. April 14, 2008. Retrieved June 24, 2010.
- Chutter, Erin (Feb 3, 2010). "Erin Airton interview with Bill Tieleman". CityCaucus.com. Retrieved June 17, 2010.
- President of NO STV makes his case, The Shotgun Blog, The Western Standard, April 29, 2009, Accessed: June 16, 2010
- Herath, R.B. (2007). Real power to the people: a novel approach to electoral reform in British Columbia. University Press of America. p. 150. ISBN 978-0-7618-3685-8.
- Hall, Neal (May 13, 2010). "BC-STV soundly defeated in electoral reform referendum". The Vancouver Sun. Retrieved June 18, 2010.
- Tieleman, Bill (May 19, 2009). "Why STV failed in B.C.". The Georgia Straight. Retrieved June 24, 2010.
- Tieleman, Bill (January 30, 2010). "Why did BC's largest Facebook group disappear?". Bill Tieleman blog. Retrieved June 16, 2010.
- Austin, Ian (February 1, 2010). "Anti-HST group's web page vanishes". The Province / Global-TV. Retrieved May 4, 2010.
- Ward, Doug (May 28, 2010). "Bill Vander Zalm shaking things again". The Vancouver Sun. Retrieved June 16, 2010.
- Know STV biographies. Accessed June 15, 2010
- Hedstrom, Arnold (Jan 21, 1982). "The teaching assistant union strike is over before it even started". The Ubyssey. Retrieved June 24, 2010.
- Ward, Doug (May 22, 2010). "LDB increases markup on booze as HST lowers tax". The Vancouver Sun (this was a front-page story). Retrieved June 17, 2010.[dead link]