Wildcat strike scene, grabbed from AUPE’s website during the strike. Below: AUPE President Guy Smith, Deputy Premier Thomas Lukaszuk.
Advice to anyone who tries to negotiate a deal with Alison Redford, Thomas Lukaszuk or any member or official of their government: take witnesses with you, and make sure you also bring a tape recorder.
You might want to bring a piece of paper, a pen, a Bible and a notary public as well. One-on-one meetings ending in “handshake deals” with these people? I don’t think so!
In what surely is one of the most outrageous Alberta news stories of the (Read more…)
Typical Alberta Progressive Conservative Party members. Or, wait, are those Wildrose members? Alberta’s rural elite may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: Alberta Municipal Affairs Minister Doug Griffiths, Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi, Edmonton Mayor Stephen Mandel. Where’s the NDP when we need them?
Here it is 2013, the Earth is about to become an urban planet, and the Progressive Conservative Government of Alberta and the Opposition Wildrose Party are locked in a titanic battle to win the hearts and minds of conservative rural voters.
What’s wrong with this picture?
City folks? As far as both parties are concerned, we’re
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Alberta still needs a “city party” – a role the New Democratic Party could fill
Finance Minister Doug Horner preps Albertans for yesterday’s budget. Actual Alberta finance ministers may not appear exactly as illustrated – but that’s the trick, isn’t it? Below: The real Doug Horner.
All in all, I guess, you could make a good case this was a pretty lousy budget.
It’s deeply confusing, as without any doubt the Alberta government intended, and there are a couple of real disasters lurking in its pages – got kids in post-secondary education, anyone?
But in the aftermath of the Alberta Budget Speech read this afternoon by Progressive Conservative Finance Minister Doug Horner, who was wearing
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Close enough for government work: Alberta Tories manage to hold their centre-right turf
Weakened but still standing: The mighty Tory edifice. Don’t panic. This is a metaphor! Below: Alberta Premier Alison Redford.
It’s interesting to juxtapose the results of two new polls on related but different topics that were released yesterday – a Think HQ poll of Alberta voter intentions and an Environics poll of Albertans attitudes about taxes and public services.
The results of the former were published in the afternoon by CTV; the results of latter were released in the morning by the Alberta Federation of Labour, for which the survey was done.
If you believe them, the Think
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Two polls show how, and maybe why, Alberta’s Tory coalition is crumbling
Everybody should be as happy about Alberta’s “Bitumen Gusher” as these two guys, your blogger and former Finance Minister Ron Liepert. Below: AUPE’s chart of the price differential between Alberta bitumen and West Texas Intermediate crude. Below that: The Alberta government’s chart showing its natural resource revenue projections to 2022, prepared for last month’s Economic Summit. Obviously there’s no cause for panic.
Have things really changed all that much for Alberta since then-energy minister Ron Liepert predicted in early 2012 that the province was on the verge of a “Bitumen Gusher” of unprecedented magnitude?
One just hates to endorse the
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Are Alberta’s cannily incompetent Conservatives quietly awaiting a ‘Bitumen Gusher’?
Political culture in Alberta? Maybe not exactly as illustrated, but it’s still a problem for the Redford Government if Albertans see it that way. Below: O. Brian Fjeldheim.
OK, we’re all enjoying a nice quiet Family Day long weekend. This gives us an opportunity to look back at the interlocking illegal political contribution eruptions that until recently plagued the Progressive Conservative government of Alberta Premier Alison Redford.
The past couple of weeks have been a busy time for Alberta political commentators, with daily events that might have been a scandal in some places, but somehow just didn’t make the grade
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Despite a lot of distraction, illegal political donations still stink up Alberta
21% of Albertans, according to a Leger poll, are undecided as to who they would support in an election. So who is going to convert these 1 in 5 Albertans? It’s not the Wildrose. They’re a known quantity, for good or ill. Nor will it be the Progressive Conservatives, racked by scandal and ebbing in the polls [...]
An Alberta Teachers Association member gets ready to give an important lesson to the Redford Government. Alberta teachers may not be smiling quite as broadly as illustrated if the government imposes a contract on them by legislation. Below: Education Minister Jeff Johnson.
Trapped in a no-deficit, no-tax-increase cage of its own devising, with few ideas and a budget looming on March 7, the government of Premier Alison Redford has floated the idea of using legislation to impose a salary cap on Alberta’s teachers.
Education Minister Jeff Johnson has been shopping this brainstorm around to the province’s school boards to see
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Redford government floats risky scheme to impose contract on teachers
Steve Khan, eyed suspiciously by a fox. Below: Richard Starke, Christine Cusanelli, Richard III and Thomas Lukaszuk.
Right on the heels of a new poll suggesting a decline in support for the Progressive Conservative government of Alberta, Premier Alison Redford announced a mini-shuffle of her cabinet yesterday, sacking a couple of rookie ministers who for different reasons had turned out to be liabilities.
Coincidence? I think not.
The telephone survey of Alberta public opinion conducted from Jan. 14 to 20 by Leger Marketing was covered by most media and commentators as if it were good news for Ms. Redford’s PCs.
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Khan, Cusanelli canned: Alberta premier sacks two rookie ministers in wake of poll
Fireside chats? Alberta Premier Alison Redford as she’ll likely see herself while softening up the province’s citizens for the March 7 Budget Speech on CTV tonight. Below: Ms. Redford as Albertans may see her. Below that: the real Ms. Redford; Conference Board Chief Economist Glen Hodgson.
Oh dear. Premier Alison Redford wants to have a “conversation” with us tonight.
Daddy’s new job at the convenience store doesn’t pay as much as the old one. We’re all going to have to tighten our belts a little, and that means you kids too. We’ve had to cancel the snow clearing service –
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Uh-oh! Premier Alison Redford wants to have a ‘conversation’ with us
They kissed us once. Will they kiss us again? Alas, in Alberta right now, there’s no way to be cert- cert- certain. Alison Redford chats with a typical Alberta voter last spring – although, Alberta politicians and their supporters may not turn out to be exactly as illustrated. Below: The real Ms. Redford, Finance Minister Doug Horner.
Here in 14 words is the conundrum that faces the Progressive Conservative government of Alberta Premier Alison Redford: you can be progressive, or you can be conservative, but you can’t be both.
So which is it?
The problem that confronts Ms. Redford’s PCs
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: The Redford Tories’ conundrum: Progressive reason versus Conservative passion
The Alberta Liberals are under attack. The Liberals are being assailed from every party from every corner of this province. The march to the middle has been of pronounced presence by almost every political faction in Alberta. The NDP have made open moves toward Liberal voters, campaigning hard in long held seats like Edmonton-Gold Bar and [...]
Calgary-Buffalo MLA Kent Hehr with a crowd of Liberalberta supporters in the background. (Bad joke. I apologize.) Below: Alberta Liberal Leader Raj Sherman.
An angry and public attack last week on Liberal MLA Kent Hehr by Alberta Liberal Party President Todd Van Vliet suggests the party’s caucus is splintering under the leadership of former Progressive Conservative Raj Sherman.
Mr. Van Vliet’s rambling and bitter attack on Mr. Hehr was prompted by the Calgary-Buffalo MLA’s contribution of a guest post to the Daveberta blog, in which he mused about the victory of the Conservatives in the recent Calgary Centre by-election,
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Attack on Kent Hehr highlights deepening fissures in Alberta Liberal ranks
I’m not interested in merging with the NDP. Todd Van Vliet, party president of the Alberta Liberals, isn’t a fan either. There was one point, almost a year ago, that I was. And I was quite frustrated then. I’m still frustrated, but more on that later. But I’m tired of hitting a brick wall. [...]
Raj Sherman kills at Huckabay’s Comedy Club, which of course doesn’t exist. Actual Alberta comedians may not be exactly as illustrated. Below: The re-branded Liberalberta logo; the real Raj Sherman, with his real chief of staff, Jonathan Huckabay; former Alberta NDP Leader Raj Pannu; the Sherman Tank.
THE SCENE: A late fall night in Edmonton, cold. A smoky bar, a comedy club called Huckabay’s. A comedian walks on stage…
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Coff-coff!
COMEDIAN: Hi there. Heard about the Alberta Liberals’ new brand? Raj Sherman, their leader? He’s re-branding them… Ouch!
AUDIENCE: [Feet shuffling, low conversations, sounds of glasses clinking
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: The Albertaliberals spawn Liberalberta … this is a joke, isn’t it?
The goal is government. I’m interested in a party that wants into government. Anything else is a waste of time. It’s a waste of time to just complain and oppose, along with it being fundamentally unnatural and strange. I want a value-based and focused support of ideas. Bottom feeding and walking by the edge of the major [...]
If anyone thinks they know what’s going to be the end result in the Liberal leadership contest (which just had its new rules announced) they’re dead wrong. Nobody knows what is going to happen. The National Post is dead wrong when they write that there is a predestined winner of this race. Why? The Liberals [...]
Premier Alison Redford with her winning PC machine. Below: Opposition Leader Danielle Smith with her less successful Wildrose machine. Below Ms. Smith: Alberta Scan publisher Paul McLoughlin and pollster Janet Brown.
Not only are the Progressive Conservatives the most popular political party in Alberta, but Premier Alison Redford enjoys a commanding lead in public confidence among the province’s political leaders, the province’s latest poll says.
Premier Redford’s leadership has the approval of 62 per cent of Albertans – almost two thirds of the province’s voters – according to the survey by Trend Research of Edmonton, which was published yesterday.
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Newest Alberta poll shows overwhelming support for Premier Alison Redford
Secretive Redford Tory, left, moves to the right, while Wildrose transparency advocate, right, opts for a totally different course. Below: Doug Horner and Alison Redford, both smirking.
This just in! Alberta’s Progressive Conservative government is secretive!
What’s astonishing is that the Alberta news media appears to be astonished by this revelation, which if you happen to have been paying attention at any time during the past decade or four shouldn’t exactly come as news to you.
Yesterday, the Alison Redford generation of the successful PC firm founded by Peter Lougheed in 1971 rolled out its 2012 first-quarter financial
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Fiscal shocker! Redford Tories promise transparency but deliver opacity!
Just a year ago, it seemed likely police recruits like these would soon be lounging around the dusty streets of Fort Macleod, where not much has changed since the Mounties pounded in their first tent pegs in 1874. Alas, it shall not be. Below: Col. James Macleod; former MLA Evan Berger; Solicitor General Jonathan Denis.
“When I look out over the crowd today, I think I can actually see people pinching themselves,” proclaimed Evan Berger, Progressive Conservative MLA for Livingstone-Macleod, just over a year ago as the sod was turned at the site of the new provincial police college in
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: The Annals of Law Enforcement: Yeah, Alberta’s Tories are sleazy, but now and then they get it right anyway
Your blogger with David Swann: Remember, when the author of this blog appears in a picture with a politician, it does not necessarily imply an endorsement. (That’s enough photos with politicians for one week, thanks – ed.) Below: Likely Conservative winner Joan Crockatt, Edmonton Strathcona NDP MP Linda Duncan and successful political strategist Stephen Carter.
At least as far as the opposition parties’ chances go in the Calgary Centre by-election, successful political strategist Stephen Carter called it bang on in a recent Calgary Herald story: “Everything depends on the candidate.”
So the question of the day
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Mystery story: is there an opposition candidate who can win the Calgary Centre by-election?
I’ve been thinking. I want to renew Raj’s contract–for leader of the Alberta Liberals. He has a nose for politics, knows exactly what the party needs to build in terms of organization and skill sets, and he was key to the reason why the party did so well. Rather than an implosion, like what many [...]