De Plane! De Plane! Tattoo calls out from the tower to announce the arrival of the premier’s plane at Calgary International Airport. Actual members of former Premier Alison Redford’s staff may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: Ms. Redford; Alberta Auditor General Merwan Saher.
Those ghost riders on Alison Redford’s government flights aren’t going to go away. They will be the death of the party she led to government in 2012.
As Tattoo used to cry from the bell tower in the creepy Fantasy Island TV series: “De plane! De plane!”
Yesterday the CBC revealed that when she (Read more…)
TweetHere’s a question that isn’t often asked in Alberta: Which of the three Progressive Conservative leadership candidates would make the best Leader of the Opposition? An insane trail of scandal continues to leak out of the 43-year-long governing PC Party as it lurches towards a leadership vote on September 6. A CBC exclusive story alleged today […]
Ice cream on a hot day – melts almost as fast as an Alberta Tory management wage freeze! Actual PC promises of “leading by example” may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: Finance Minister Doug Horner, nowhere to be seen yesterday; leadership candidate Thomas Lukaszuk, bemoaning the decision last night.
Senior Alberta government managers had to be rejoicing yesterday – and presumably resolving to update their lapsed memberships in the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party.
Leastways, word leaked out yesterday to us in the Hoi Polloi that the government’s three-year freeze on civil service executive salaries, which began amid great fanfare (Read more…)
Ladies and gentlemen, place your bets. All the money’s on Jim Prentice – but is it the smart money? Below: Ric McIver, Jim Prentice, Jim Dinning and Gary Mar.
Could Ric McIver actually win the Alberta Progressive Conservative leadership race?
Or, to put that another way, could Jim Prentice lose?
Maybe that seems like a theme for a political science fiction story to you. After all, Mr. Prentice – the former banker, corporate lobbyist and federal cabinet minister – is the choice of the PC establishment.
What’s more, he’s now backed by 49 of 59 PC Members of the (Read more…)
TweetIn 53 days, members of Alberta’s Progressive Conservative Party will vote to choose their next leader and the next Premier of Alberta. Unlike previous PC leadership races, where Albertans of all political-inclinations were excited to participate in the vote to directly choose the next Leader of the Natural Governing Party, there does not appear to be any sign […]
Brian Mulroney, right, famously responds to the claim made by John Turner, left, that he had “no option” but approve Pierre Trudeau’s patronage appointments. Below: Gary Mar in 2011.
Advice to Jim Prentice: If, in some future pre-election leaders’ debate someone asks you about Gary Mar’s 2013 compensation package, don’t say: “I had no option.”
In fact, that would be true if Mr. Prentice were to say it. Ditto Ric McIver, the second- or third-runner, depending how you calculate it, in the 2014 version of the Progressive Conservative Party leadership race.
As for Thomas Lukaszuk, he was in cabinet (Read more…)
Alberta Minister of Licence Plates Doug Griffiths poses with some of the versions of Alberta’s plates considered by provincial officials before they settled on the three finalists unveiled yesterday. Below: Fort McMurray-Wood Buffalo MLA Mike Allen, centre, examines a licence-plate-making facility on a recent government trip to Minnesota. Below that: The real Doug Griffiths and his sidekick Jonathan “Dep’uty Jono” Denis, the chief lawman of the territory.
So here’s my question: If it were the Alberta Party instead of the Wildrose Party breathing down the necks of Alberta’s Progressive Conservatives, would they change the name of the province?
Yesterday, elected (Read more…)
Oooooh! Happy Canada Day, Canadians. Enjoy yourselves. Prime Minister Steve Harper and Premier Dave Hancock wish they could be here with you and Perfesser Dave. Below: Mr. Hancock and Mr. Harper … Happy-Happy!
Happy Canada Day!
Perfesser Dave, here, the political predictions guy, speaking on behalf of my friends Stephen Harper and David Hancock, who weren’t available to talk to you last night.
Both of them were really, really busy getting ready for Canada Day today, but I know they would want me to let you know they hope you have the best Canada Day holiday ever! And they hope (Read more…)
TweetMost people rely on TripAdvisor or call a travel agent to book hotels for overseas trips, but it is alleged by intrepid CBC investigative journalists that former Premier Alison Redford dispatched a staffer to visit hotels and restaurants in advance of her trips to India, China, Switzerland, Washington, and Toronto for a cost of nearly $330,000. It is not […]
Alberta Progressive Conservative Party activists surround leadership candidate Jim Prentice at a recent $500-a-plate fund-raising dinner in Edmonton. Finance Minister Doug Horner is visible immediately to Mr. Prentice’s right. The painting in the background illustrates Peter Lougheed Provincial Park. Actual Progressive Conservative Party members may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: The actual Mr. Horner, Tory leadership candidate Ric McIver, sort-of candidate Thomas Lukaszuk and Edmonton New Media Awards Co-Founder Brittney Le Blanc.
Another qualified and long-expected candidate for the post of the first permanent post-Alison-Redford leader of the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party has meekly thrown his support to the (Read more…)
An unidentified person, left, said to be close to undeclared Tory leadership candidate Jim Prentice, waits for the Cone of Silence to descend over his discussions with a member of Wildrose Leader Danielle Smith’s inner circle, also unidentified, at right. Actual unidentified anonymous political agents may or may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: a journalist interviews Tory leadership frontrunner Jim Prentice, at left, who is expected to reveal to Albertans what he actually looks like soon, maybe today.
Like those Sluzhba Vneshney Razvedki men from Russia allegedly crawling all over Ukraine and stirring up nothing but trouble, secret agents (Read more…)
TweetHe is a leadership candidate backed by long-governing party establishment. He has chased away his potential rivals. He has experience in both the federal cabinet and the corporate sector. He is a respected party insider. He has a track record as a moderate conservative and can raise significant amounts of money for his party. The […]
Hail the conquering hero … now starring Jim Prentice, above. Actual Progressive Conservative Enlightened Beings may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: Non-leadership contenders Ken … Ken, we hardly knew ye! … Hughes, Doug Horner, Diana McQueen and Jonathan Denis.
And then there were two…
Ken Hughes, the former minister of municipal affairs and energy and the first candidate to enter the 2014 race to lead the Alberta Progressive Conservatives, has pulled out of the contest, bowing to the inevitability of a Jim Prentice coronation.
For his part, Mr. Prentice, the Calgary banker and former federal politician, continues to play (Read more…)
A system of contracts that can be enforced and adjudicated by an independent and disinterested court like this one is one of the key features of civilized society. This is a picture of the court used by a significant number Canadian law firms to illustrate their web pages. Actually, it’s the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Manhattan. But, unlike all those coruscating Canadian legalists, I took this picture myself. Below: Premier pro tem Dave Hancock talking to the media about an entirely different controversial issue; historian Alvin Finkel.
Amid all the brouhaha in recent weeks over (Read more…)
Yeggie winning blogger David Climenhaga with a familiar-looking Albertan. What was her name again? Below: The same guy with some other political types who look faintly familiar.
When the podcast site for the Edmonton Journal’s entire 11-member political affairs team was nominated for one of this year’s Yeggies, the annual awards created last year “to recognize and celebrate outstanding social media content creators in the Capital Region,” the local newspaper made a fairly big deal of it.
After all, this is YEGville, and the Yeggies highlight “some of the amazing talent we have here in Edmonton.” So fair enough (Read more…)
Alison Redford crashes through the Alberta Legislature. Below: Frightened and relieved, Alberta Progressive Conservative MLAs race from the vicinity of the Legislative Building in Edmonton yesterday; Nostradamus; Moses. Actual Alberta politicians and legislative architectural renderings may not appear exactly as illustrated.
It must have seemed a little like the panic scene in post-war Japanese monster movie at the Alberta Legislature yesterday. Only in this flick, the shadow cast by Godzilla looked suspiciously like that of Alison Redford.
Fortunately, no one seems to have been seriously injured in the rush for the exits.
After two years with Ms. Redford at the (Read more…)
Alberta Workers Compensation Board officials ready shipments of money to send back to employers. Actual WBC staff may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: Labour Minister Thomas Lukaszuk and now-official Tory leadership candidate Ric McIver, who gave up the K in his first name for the benefit of all Albertans.
The Alberta Workers Compensation Board is poised to give back more than half a billion dollars in employer contributions thanks to an unexpectedly good year for its asset-liability management activities.
Leastways, so says a slide prepared for a meeting the month before last of the Industry Task Force Association, (Read more…)
TweetAnother Calgarian has entered what has been, at least so far, an all-Calgarian Progressive Conservative leadership race. Announcing his candidacy in the contest to become the next PC Party leader and premier, former Infrastructure minister Ric McIver declared he would bring a “common-sense new approach to replace insider, establishment thinking, with new common-sense thinking.” The first-term MLA and former three-term […]
AUPE President Guy Smith, left, and Finance Minister Doug Horner on the podium together at yesterday’s news conference in Edmonton. Below: NDP leader Brian Mason as he spoke to reporters moments afterward.
There’s no question, after a year of something approaching total warfare between the Government of Alberta and its civil service union, it was unnerving to see Alberta Union of Provincial Employees President Guy Smith and Finance Minister Doug Horner sharing the same podium at a joint news conference yesterday morning.
The backstory for the public? Former premier Alison Redford is gone, taking her war on public employees with (Read more…)
Alberta Premier pro tem Dave Hancock, who does not appear exactly as illustrated, of course, pictured on a Get Out of Jail Free card given him today by Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi. Below: Mr. Nenshi and the real Mr. Hancock.
Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi handed Alberta Premier pro tempore Dave Hancock a Get Out of Jail Free card today.
It may not seem that way at first blush, but when Mr. Nenshi wrote Premier Hancock assailing Finance Minister Doug Horner’s Alison-Redford-era legislation allowing the province to gut Alberta public sector pensions, he did the government a huge favour.
Bill 9, (Read more…)
If not cordiale, at least entente. Alberta Premier Dave Hancock and AUPE President Guy Smith celebrate their tentative contract agreement yesterday. Actual Alberta public figures may not appear exactly as illustrated. (I freely admit stealing this idea from Daveberta.ca.) Below: Jim Prentice, Mr. Hancock and Mr. Smith.
The threat of open warfare between Alberta’s government and its largest union over the contract for unionized civil servants ended yesterday, after the ruling Progressive Conservative dynasty, nervously awaiting the coming of latest supposed saviour, appears to have sued for peace.
Pretty obviously, the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees won, although, (Read more…)
TweetCould the snoozer that has become Alberta’s Progressive Conservative leadership race risk becoming a coronation if former federal cabinet minister Jim Prentice jumps into the race? Necessitated by the resignation of Premier Alison Redford on March 19, the race to choose the next leader of Alberta’s 43-year long governing PC Party has so far drawn little interest from serious […]
Members of the Alberta government’s Public Affairs Bureau spin a good yarn in response to freedom of information requests filed ages ago by Alberta journalists, opposition politicians and other busybodies. Actual government propaganda officials may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: Labour Minister Thomas Lukaszuk, Information Commissioner Jill Clayton and Finance Minister Doug Horner.
Albertans owe Thomas Lukaszuk a small gesture of thanks for illustrating it’s not just Alison Redford who had the problem with entitlement.
Surely it’s a sense of entitlement that drives the attitude, all too typical among members of Alberta’s still-ruling Progressive Conservative elite, (Read more…)
On March 23, Lewis Cardinal became the first nominated federal NDP candidate in Canada for the expected 2015 election. (Photo by Dave Cournoyer, used with permission.) Yesterday he stepped aside in the face of undisclosed health problems. Below: Wildrose Finance Critic Rob Anderson.
What a strange day it was yesterday, at times uplifting, at times profoundly depressing, and at times just disorienting.
In the morning, Alberta suddenly dropped most aspects of its official homophobia. This less formal kind will continue to longer for a spell, of course, but as an issue for most Albertans it’s done like the family’s (Read more…)