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Alberta Politics: Do billionaires fleeing Canadian taxes deserve public subsidies for their Alberta franchises?

PHOTOS: CNRL Executive Chairperson N. Murray Edwards, a billionaire. (Wikipedia photo). Below: Twitter gadfly Dave Beninger (Facebook grab), Law Professor Catherine Brown (University of Calgary photo), former Alberta Premier Alison Redford and billiona… . . . → Read More: Alberta Politics: Do billionaires fleeing Canadian taxes deserve public subsidies for their Alberta franchises?

Alberta Politics: Banning corporate and union election cash: not just the right thing for the NDP to do, but the smart thing too

PHOTOS: A group of Albertans studies the effects of corporate cash on the conservative domination of North American politics. Actual Albertans may not appear exactly as illustrated. Regardless, Alberta’s NDP government may be about to try to fix this problem. Below: Parkland Institute charts showing the percentage of election campaign donations in 2012 over $375, . . . → Read More: Alberta Politics: Banning corporate and union election cash: not just the right thing for the NDP to do, but the smart thing too

daveberta.ca - Alberta Politics: PC Party patronage machine grinds to a halt, future of appointees unknown

After 44 years as government, Alberta’s Progressive Conservative Party built an impressive patronage machine. For many decades, there very likely has not been a board with provincially appointed members that did not enjoy the presence of a PC Party member. As Rachel Notley‘s New Democrats transition into… Continue Reading →

Alberta Diary: The Santa Clause: A holiday gift of biting humour from Alberta NDP Leader Rachel Notley

NDP Leader Rachel Notley, helping to improve the New Democrats’ game in Alberta. Below: Education Minister Gordon Dirks, restored Tory MLA Peter Sandhu and former PC cabinet minister Evan Berger; Alberta Premier Jim Prentice.

No one can say Rachel Notley hasn’t upped the Alberta NDP’s game since she was elected party leader in . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: The Santa Clause: A holiday gift of biting humour from Alberta NDP Leader Rachel Notley

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: The future of Rexall Place without the Edmonton Oilers

TweetIn the great rush to relocate the Edmonton Oilers to Daryl Katz‘s new downtown arena district, there appears to have been little serious thought or planning focused on what to do with the professional hockey team’s long-time current home, Rexall Place. Located north east of downtown on the Northlands Exposition Grounds, Rexall Place is an . . . → Read More: daveberta.ca – Alberta politics: The future of Rexall Place without the Edmonton Oilers

Alberta Diary: Liberal Leader Raj Sherman may have scored ‘own goal’ as Elections Alberta investigates donations to his party by firms he owns

If this is your own goal, there may be something wrong with your game! Below: Alberta Liberal Leader Raj Sherman and Edmonton billionaire Daryl Katz.

Call it the Alberta Political Advantage.

Reports of illegal and questionable political donations have dogged Alberta’s Progressive Conservative government for years. These included contributions made by such public . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Liberal Leader Raj Sherman may have scored ‘own goal’ as Elections Alberta investigates donations to his party by firms he owns

Alberta Diary: PC finances: looks like Armageddon for Tories and Wildrose Apocalypse for the rest of us

Wildrose Party leader Danielle Smith, on horseback, gazes at all that remains of Alberta’s once-mighty Alberta Progressive Conservative dynasty. Actual Alberta politicians may not appear quite so metaphorically. Below: PC Party Executive Director Kelley Charlebois.

We can probably thank former Alberta premier Alison Redford for breaking the spine of the 43-year Progressive . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: PC finances: looks like Armageddon for Tories and Wildrose Apocalypse for the rest of us

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: PC Party opts for a short and expensive leadership campaign

TweetIn 2006, it was $15,000, in 2011, it was $40,000, and in 2011, the fee to become a candidate in the Progressive Conservative leadership race is $50,000. Senior officials from Alberta’s Progressive Conservative party gathered in Red Deer last night to discuss timelines, entry fees and the rules that will help shape their party’s 2014 . . . → Read More: daveberta.ca – Alberta politics: PC Party opts for a short and expensive leadership campaign

Alberta Diary: Evil twins: Alberta Progressive Conservatives assail Wildrosers, and vice versa

This is not a photograph of Alberta Premier Alison Redford and Alberta Opposition Leader Danielle Smith. For one thing, these two are far too friendly with one another. But you get the point I’m trying to make, I’m sure. Below: The real Ms. Redford and the real Ms. Smith.

I’ll admit I laughed . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Evil twins: Alberta Progressive Conservatives assail Wildrosers, and vice versa

Alberta Diary: Albertans want election-spending-limit law but are unlikely to get one from Redford PCs

Generous corporate donor drops off cash at Tory headquarters. Actual donors, who may not be exactly as illustrated, will be determined later. Below: Parkland Institute researcher Trevor Harrison and Tory Human Services Minister Dave Hancock.

It’s a conundrum!

What should Alberta’s Tories do? A study by the University of Alberta’s Parkland Institute released . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Albertans want election-spending-limit law but are unlikely to get one from Redford PCs

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: In Alberta, the billionaire walks and the working man gets the shaft.

TweetThe billionaire walks… There was little surprise among the cynical pundit class yesterday as Elections Alberta announced that it had found billionaire Daryl Katz and his Katz Group broke no laws when the company delivered a donation in the form of a $430,000 bank draft to Premier Alison Redford‘s Progressive Conservative Party during last year’s . . . → Read More: daveberta.ca – Alberta politics: In Alberta, the billionaire walks and the working man gets the shaft.

Alberta Diary: All lawbreakers will be punished … unless they happen to be Alberta Conservatives

“’Ave you got a leesence for your minkey?” An investigator for Elections Alberta pauses momentarily in his probe of political donations made to the Progressive Conservative Party by seeing-eye monkeys. If you don’t get it, I can’t help you. Actual Elections Alberta investigators by now have likely been transferred back to plain clothes. . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: All lawbreakers will be punished … unless they happen to be Alberta Conservatives

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: Bad planning: Edmonton Arena funding and Calgary urban sprawl.

TweetWhile too much media attention was focused this week on the fate of a statue of a hockey player who left Edmonton twenty-five years ago for sunny southern California (and piles of money), City Council desperately tried to draw up a Plan B (or Plan C) to fund the proposed downtown arena. The unrealistic Plan . . . → Read More: daveberta.ca – Alberta politics: Bad planning: Edmonton Arena funding and Calgary urban sprawl.

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: Tories versus Wildrose: Year One in Alberta’s new political game.

TweetOn April 23, 2012, Alberta’s most hotly contested election in decades culminated with the re-election of the twelfth consecutive Progressive Conservative majority government since 1971. Despite holding the large majority elected MLAs, the popular vote showed Albertans were closely divided between Alison Redford‘s Tories who finished with 44% compared to an impressive 34% showing for . . . → Read More: daveberta.ca – Alberta politics: Tories versus Wildrose: Year One in Alberta’s new political game.

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: Funding Edmonton’s Downtown Arena, the strange comedy of errors continues.

TweetThe strange comedy of errors that has become Edmonton’s Downtown Arena project continued this week as City Council scrambled to fill a $100 million gap in a funding plan they approved months ago. Despite repeated claims by Mayor Stephen Mandel that provincial government money would fill the $100 million gap, anyone who has paid any . . . → Read More: daveberta.ca – Alberta politics: Funding Edmonton’s Downtown Arena, the strange comedy of errors continues.

Alberta Diary: Despite a lot of distraction, illegal political donations still stink up Alberta

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 . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Despite a lot of distraction, illegal political donations still stink up Alberta

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: Alberta Tories confused about illegal donations.

TweetCaught having accepted 45 prohibited donations from municipalities and publicly-funded institutions since 2009, the Progressive Conservative Association spent the past few days sending mixed messages whether it would or already had repaid the full amount of illegals funds as requested by Alberta’s Chief Electoral Officer . Party officials previously stated the funds would be repayed, . . . → Read More: daveberta.ca – Alberta politics: Alberta Tories confused about illegal donations.

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: What the Heck? Tory tied to donation controversy now head of Alberta Economic Development Authority.

TweetVia the Edmonton Journal: Conservative linked to Katz donation named chairman of the Alberta Economic Development Authority BY KAREN KLEISS, EDMONTON JOURNAL JANUARY 30, 2013 EDMONTON – Premier Alison Redford has given a provincial political appointment to a veteran Conservative insider who allegedly brokered a $430,000 donation from Oilers owner and billionaire Daryl Katz. Media . . . → Read More: daveberta.ca – Alberta politics: What the Heck? Tory tied to donation controversy now head of Alberta Economic Development Authority.

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: Three investigations kick-off 2013 in Alberta politics.

TweetDespite winning a large majority in last spring’s provincial election, Alberta’s long-governing Progressive Conservatives had a rough ride in the media and on the floor of the Assembly last year. If Tory MLAs hoped for a reprieve in 2013, they may have to wait for a few months. Starting off the year are three investigations . . . → Read More: daveberta.ca – Alberta politics: Three investigations kick-off 2013 in Alberta politics.

Alberta Diary: A tsunami of Tory troubles? Naw, the Alberta universe is unfolding as it should…

All we want are the facts, Ma’am. A couple of investigators hired by Alberta Chief Electoral Officer O. (for Olaf) Brian Fjeldheim prepare to go through the files of friends, relatives and employees of billionaire Daryl Katz who may or may not have donated money to the Redford Tories. Actual Alberta detectives may . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: A tsunami of Tory troubles? Naw, the Alberta universe is unfolding as it should…

Alberta Diary: With the NHL back on the ice, why not let Chinese taxpayers subsidize Canada’s billionaires?

The Great Leap Forum: what Edmonton’s luxurious new ice hockey palace could look like with a little gesture of internationist solidarity from Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Communist Chinese friends. Conceptual art by Dave Cournoyer used with permission.

It’s a moment of such perfect convergence that it’s astonishing Alberta’s Wildrose Party, which last week . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: With the NHL back on the ice, why not let Chinese taxpayers subsidize Canada’s billionaires?

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: Could Chinese “stadium diplomacy” save Daryl Katz’s downtown arena dream?

TweetDid Canada miss an opportunity when the federal government acquiesced to a Chinese Government owned company purchasing Alberta energy company Nexen for $15 billion? Did we miss an opportunity when Canadian energy companies agreed to build a pipeline exporting raw oilsands bitumen to China? Perhaps we are not driving a hard enough bargain. To the . . . → Read More: daveberta.ca – Alberta politics: Could Chinese “stadium diplomacy” save Daryl Katz’s downtown arena dream?

Alberta Diary: Wildrose rink lotto scheme: a new tax on the prodigal and the poor

Imagine the millions we can scoop up from the foolish and the intoxicated! Wildrose Leader Danielle Smith extemporizes on the advantages of using gambling to subsidize billionaires. Below: Drugstore and hockey billionaire Daryl Katz; former Wildrose candidate Pastor Alan Hunsperger.

It was almost a relief yesterday when Danielle Smith, leader of . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Wildrose rink lotto scheme: a new tax on the prodigal and the poor

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: Wildrose KENO-Arena lottery gambles with future of charities and non-profits.

TweetWildrose Official Opposition leader Danielle Smith re-injected herself into the latest round of news coverage about how to fund the Katz Group’s on-again, off-again arena north of Edmonton’s downtown. At a press conference this afternoon, Ms. Smith proposed that the provincial government should examine using the “KENO gambling model” to generate revenue for the proposed . . . → Read More: daveberta.ca – Alberta politics: Wildrose KENO-Arena lottery gambles with future of charities and non-profits.

In This Corner: The year in political bloopers.

Ah, politics. It has the potential to inspire, and an even greater potential to inspire derisive laughter or fits of rage. Here, for your reading and enraging enjoyment, are my choices for the top 10 political blunders of 2012, local edition.

1. Allan Hunsperger and the ‘lake of fire’

In the April provincial election, the . . . → Read More: In This Corner: The year in political bloopers.