Alberta Politics: Ted Byfield’s back, cyber-crusading for Jason Kenney’s bid to lead Alberta back to the Fifties!

PHOTOS: Ted Byfield at the microphone (Edson leader photo). Below: Alberta Education Minister David Eggen, the late Link Byfield, Mr. Byfield’s son, and a cover from the bad old days of Alberta Report magazine. Like the proverbial bad penny, Ted Byfield is back. It should come as no surprise that Mr. Byfield, now 87 and ...

Alberta Politics: Jason Kenney states his support for public funding of home-schooling, parents’ right to veto sex education, and more

PHOTOS: Jason Kenney … he’s got some thoughts on education and we thought you might like to know what they are (CBC photo). Below: Alberta Education Minister David Eggen, Progress Alberta Executive Director Duncan Kinney and defiant Pastor Brian Coldwell of Parents for Choice in Education. Where does Jason Kenney stand on important issues in ...

Alberta Politics: Where exactly is the ‘compromise’ Jason Kenney thinks the NDP should make on sexual minority rights?

PHOTOS: Progressive Conservative leadership candidate Jason Kenney back in the day … welcoming refugees? Well, not if they wanted health care. Unintended ironic juxtaposition, I suppose. (Photo from abbotsfordtoday.blogspot.ca.) Below: Alberta Education Minister David Eggen; New Testament Baptist Church, just west of Edmonton. Where exactly is this “sensible Alberta compromise” Jason Kenney advises the province’s ...

Alberta Politics: Church in fight over Alberta LGBTQ policy espouses far-right ideology, has close tie to advocacy group

PHOTOS: The New Testament Baptist Church near Spruce Grove, just west of Edmonton. Below: The vandalized sign, with some of the scrubbed pink spray paint still visible; additional signs on the site promoting the church and school; and administrator Rev. Brian Coldwell and private school advocate Donna Trimble, the latter two shots from the CBC. ...

Susan on the Soapbox: Bishop Henry Pontificates on Gay Straight Alliances

On January 13, 2016 The Most Reverend Frederick Bernard Henry, the seventh Catholic Bishop of the diocese of Calgary well and truly lost it. Henry wrote a pastoral letter denouncing Education Minister David Eggen’s “edict” that public, Catholic, French and charter school boards must support LBTQ students who wish to form gay-straight alliances (GSAs) and ...

daveberta.ca - Alberta Politics: Putting protection of sexual & gender minorities back on the agenda at provincial school boards meeting

Amid allegations of financial misspending and a lack of transparency, representatives from sixty-one elected Public, Catholic, and Francophone school boards from across Alberta will gather at the fall general meeting of the Alberta School Boards Association on November 15, 16 and… Continue Reading →

daveberta.ca - Alberta Politics: 10 Conservative candidates in Alberta endorsed by radical anti-abortion group

Nearly one-third of federal Conservative candidates running in Alberta ridings have been endorsed by the controversial Campaign Life Coalition for their opposition to women’s reproductive rights, according to a report from Press Progress.

daveberta.ca - Alberta Politics: #abvote Google Hangout with MLA Laurie Blakeman

It has been a banner month for Edmonton-Centre MLA Laurie Blakeman. At the start of last week, the Progressive Conservative government did a 180 degree flip to endorse Ms. Blakeman’s bid to allow students to create Gay-Straight Alliances in Alberta schools. By… Continue Reading →

daveberta.ca - Alberta Politics: Top 10 moments in Alberta Politics in 2014

TweetIn my nearly ten years writing about politics in Alberta on this blog, 2014 was easily the most exciting. The sheer number of scandals, controversies, fumbles and resignations made for new content on a daily basis. If I had the time and resources, I could have easily written three or four posts a day for most of ...

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: A Dozen Alberta MLAs worth watching in 2015

TweetAs 2014 reminded us, politics can be an extraordinarily unpredictable and forecasting the future can be a tricky business for political pundits. Aside from the obvious choice of Premier Jim Prentice, here is a list of a dozen Alberta MLAs worth watching in 2015. Rob Anderson (Airdrie): The outspoken rookie MLA left the PC Caucus in 2010 ...

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: Bishop Henry, Bill 10 … Lies, Lies and More Lies

If there is one thing that I find infuriating, it is when grown men like Bishop Henry lie. In today’s Calgary Herald, there is a copy of a pastoral letter that Bishop Henry has had distributed through the churches of his diocese.  In it, we find the following little gem: The mandating of Gay Straight ...

Alberta Diary: Alberta’s attack on gay-straight alliances rests on the same logical fallacy as Russia’s ‘gay propaganda’ law – coincidence, or what?

Russian police arrest citizens protesting against the country’s anti-gay laws, which rely on the same logical fallacy as the Prentice Government’s moves to suppress a bill that would have supported gay-straight alliances in schools. Below: Alberta Liberal MLA and GSA advocate Laurie Blakeman, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Alberta Premier Jim Prentice. Give Jim Prentice ...

Alberta Diary: Insufficient data, bad planning and so-con overreach help explain Prentice Government’s gay-straight-alliance gong show

Led by Premier Jim Prentice, members of the PC cabinet try to get away from the issue of gay-straight alliances in Alberta schools. Actual Alberta politicians may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: The real Mr. Prentice, Edmonton-Centre MLA Laurie Blakeman and caucus rebel Thomas Lukaszuk. The spectacular incompetence exhibited by the Prentice Government in ...

Dented Blue Mercedes: Legislatively “Balancing” Human Rights

There is a simple, time-honoured rule about attempting to “balance” human rights classes in legislation so that it works out a particular way every time, and it goes like this: You can’t. That is a court’s role.  When two human rights classes are put into conflict in a way that creates hardships for both, a ...

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: A timeline of Alberta’s Gay-Straight Alliance debate

TweetIt is sometimes amazing how quickly one political issue can transform and dominate the debate. This week’s raging debate about allowing Gay-Straight Alliances (GSA) in Alberta schools has twisted and turned so many times, it has become difficult to figure out who is in and out of the closet on this issue. Wikipedia defines a Gay-Straight ...

Susan on the Soapbox: What if Prentice Issued an FAQ to Explain Bill 10…?

Premier Prentice likes corporate-speak (“under new management”, “price takers, not price makers”, etc) so let’s apply a corporate communication tool, the FAQ, to explain the government’s rationale for Bill 10. And let’s assume for a wild and crazy moment that the answers his spokesperson provides are the unvarnished truth. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) Q: What ...

Alberta Diary: Bill 10 gong show’s bungled effort to pander to PC Party’s worst elements proves Jim Prentice is no political superman

Alberta Premier Jim Prentice, as he appeared to almost everyone until yesterday, except there are no ships here in Alberta, which is why we need all those pipelines. Below: Education Minister Gordon Dirks; humiliated PC MLA Sandra Jansen, official sponsor of Bill 10; and Liberal MLA and Bill 202 sponsor Laurie Blakeman. If the gong ...

Alberta Diary: ‘Balancing’ rights? Just what rights are being balanced here? The Prentice Government’s Bill 10 is a disgrace

Premier Jim Prentice, with pointer, instructs his Progressive Conservative caucus on how they will vote on Bill 10. Actual docile PC caucus members may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: The real Mr. Prentice and Liberal MLA Laurie Blakeman as she blows the whistle on homophobia in Alberta schools. Last week, Alberta Premier Jim Prentice ...

Susan on the Soapbox: Lessons Prentice Learned at Harper’s Knee

Somewhere between the time that Premier Hancock stepped down and Premier Prentice ascended to the throne, the PC caucus turned into a bunch of sniveling crybabies. Not to worry, Mr Prentice will save the day with a maneuver befitting his mentor, Mr Harper. Apparently the Liberal’s Bill 202 wedged the PC caucus between a rock ...

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: What if politicians could stop school kids from starting clubs?

TweetWhat does it look like when a politician tries to build his credibility among social conservative voters? We found out this week when Premier Jim Prentice sideswiped Edmonton-Centre Liberal MLA Laurie Blakeman’s private members bill – Bill 202: Safe and Inclusive Schools Statutes Amendment Act, 2014 – that would allow students to form Gay-Straight Alliances (GSAs) ...

Alberta Diary: Maneuver to derail Alberta gay-straight alliance bill shows Prentice Tories will tolerate bullying for political gain

Laurie Blakeman, veteran Alberta Liberal MLA for Edmonton-Centre, flanked by a couple of her friends at the 2014 Edmonton Pride Parade. Below: Premier Jim Prentice and Education Minister Gordon Dirks. By choosing yesterday to put the right of citizens to use their religious beliefs as an excuse for bigotry on the same level as the ...

Alberta Diary: Alberta Tories are swinging right, paradoxically because of the implosion of their right-wing brethren in the Wildrose Party

Family values: Not so long ago they were all swinging left, but now the Progressive Conservative caucus of Premier Jim Prentice is swinging right. Getting ready to launch, from left to right, new PC caucus member Kerry Towle, Mr. Prentice, new caucus member Ian Donovan, and an unidentified former Redford Government cabinet minister. Actual Alberta ...

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: The least interesting part of Legislative Session: The Throne Speech

TweetEvery year, political watchers gather at the Alberta Legislature for the pomp and circumstance of the Speech from the Throne, hoping to get a glimpse of a political agenda. And every year they are sorely disappointed at the Throne Speech’s lack of detail. Yesterday’s Throne Speech, delivered by elderly Lieutenant Governor Donald Ethell, was unremarkable, ...

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: Limping Alberta Liberals face more financial troubles

Tweet Did Liberal leader Raj Sherman break Alberta’s political donations limits when making donations to his own party? The Calgary Herald is reporting that Dr. Sherman may have exceeded the $15,000 limit for donations three times in the past four years and donated double the limit this year through corporations he controls. The questionable donations were ...

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: Source: MLA Kent Hehr to run for Trudeau Liberals in Calgary-Centre

TweetPolitical Calgary is abuzz with rumours that popular MLA Kent Hehr will seek the Liberal nomination in the federal riding of Calgary-Centre. Reliable sources say that Mr. Hehr has gone so far as to request nomination forms to become an official nomination candidate for the federal Liberals. Mr. Hehr would be a star candidate for the ...