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Alberta Politics: NDP moves to rein in Tory patronage and boondoggles at Alberta’s many boards, agencies and commissions

PHOTOS: NDP Finance Minister Joe Ceci on the day he was sworn in. Below: The full list of agencies to be amalgamated or eliminated by the government in the first round of its “ABC” review; NDP Environment Minister Shannon Phillips; and Tory health … . . . → Read More: Alberta Politics: NDP moves to rein in Tory patronage and boondoggles at Alberta’s many boards, agencies and commissions

Alberta Politics: Just when the nattering nabobs of neoliberal negativism felt safe to write off the NDP, the crack of Doomsday opens!

PHOTOS: Actor David Suchet as Agatha Christie’s imaginary Hercule Poirot. Below: Postmedia Alberta Frankenpaper political columnist Lorne Gunter, Alberta Premier Rachel Notley, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Alberta Prosperity Fund President Barry Mc… . . . → Read More: Alberta Politics: Just when the nattering nabobs of neoliberal negativism felt safe to write off the NDP, the crack of Doomsday opens!

Alberta Politics: Go figure! Ezra Levant, the Pied Piper of right-wing-nuttery, has the mainstream media singing his tune!

PHOTOS: Right-wing commentator Ezra Levant in a typical pose, photo by David Stobbe of the University of Saskatchewan. Below: stringer Sheila Gunn Reid in a screen shot of The Rebel’s approach to journalism; Mr. Levant in another familiar pose, a few… . . . → Read More: Alberta Politics: Go figure! Ezra Levant, the Pied Piper of right-wing-nuttery, has the mainstream media singing his tune!

Alberta Politics: Upstairs Downstairs at the Edmonton Journal as Sun staff gets ready to move in

PHOTOS: The Edmonton Journal Building at 101st Street and MacDonald Drive in downtown Edmonton. It remains to be seen who will be Upstairs, and who will be Downstairs, when the staff of the Sun joins the staff of the Journal at the same address in the fall. Below: Journal Editor-in-Chief Margo Goodhand, Postmedia President and . . . → Read More: Alberta Politics: Upstairs Downstairs at the Edmonton Journal as Sun staff gets ready to move in

Alberta Diary: Enough with the fantasy Wildrose was Alberta’s best opposition, already! It’s baloney!

And then there were five: The Wildrose caucus back before it experienced civil war, desertions and mass defections, including that of its leader, the woman in red above. Below: former NDP leader Brian Mason and current Leader Rachel Notley; effective Liberal MLAs David Swann and Hugh Macdonald.

One of the more irritating byproducts . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Enough with the fantasy Wildrose was Alberta’s best opposition, already! It’s baloney!

Alberta Diary: Is there any benefit for Albertans in a criminal prosecution of Alison Redford? Not really

Alison Redford, in days past, somewhere in the skies over Alberta. OK, I never said I was a master of Photoshop! Below: Disgraced Canadian Senator Mike Duffy, Alberta Tory leadership frontrunner Jim Prentice, leadership candidate and former deputy premier Thomas Lukaszuk.

Will Alberta benefit from a police investigation of Alison Redford’s use of . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Is there any benefit for Albertans in a criminal prosecution of Alison Redford? Not really

BigCityLib Strikes Back: Lorne Gunter: Whatever The Facts Are, They’re Bad

The Sun’s Lorne Gunter objects to a PBO report claiming public sector sick day costs are not a burden on the taxpayer because  “…most departments do not call in replacements when an employee takes a sick day, [and therefore] there are no incremental costs.”  Lorne doesn’t like that: whatever the costs are, they’re unwarranted.  He . . . → Read More: BigCityLib Strikes Back: Lorne Gunter: Whatever The Facts Are, They’re Bad

Alberta Diary: With floodwaters rising again, will Sun News Network renew its hysterical ‘gun grab’ attacks on the Royal Canadian Mounted Police?

Sun News Network columnist Lorne Gunter is presented an award by National Firearms Association President Sheldon Clare for his commentary on the so-called “High River Gun Grab.” (Grabbed from the NFA’s website.) Below: Floodwaters roar through High River last year. (CBC Photo)

Rain is falling and floodwaters are rising again in Southern Alberta.

. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: With floodwaters rising again, will Sun News Network renew its hysterical ‘gun grab’ attacks on the Royal Canadian Mounted Police?

Alberta Diary: The ‘Self Preservation Society’ wants Jim Prentice for ‘The Alberta Job’ – but can he forgo his ambition to be PM?

“The Alberta Job.” Will the original “Self Preservation Society” get to keep the Tory gold? Is Jim Prentice – above, not exactly as illustrated – the man to help them do it? Read on to find out why we’ll probably never find out. Below: The actual Jim Prentice. Below him: Possible, rumoured, putative . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: The ‘Self Preservation Society’ wants Jim Prentice for ‘The Alberta Job’ – but can he forgo his ambition to be PM?

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: Laurie Hawn to retire, blowing Edmonton-Centre race wide open

TweetEdmonton-Centre Conservative Member of Parliament Laurie Hawn has decided to retire when the next election is called, according to the latest column by the Edmonton Sun’s Lorne Gunter. The retired Air Force lieutenant-colonel first entered politics in 2004, running unsuccessfully against Liberal MP and Deputy Prime Minister Anne McLellan. Mr. Hawn defeated Ms. McLellan in . . . → Read More: daveberta.ca – Alberta politics: Laurie Hawn to retire, blowing Edmonton-Centre race wide open

BigCityLib Strikes Back: Do I Owe Lorne Gunter An Ice Cream Cone?

Maybe.  Got this email from officer Ian Shardlow this morning:

The estimates that I have received is that we destroyed approximately 3-4000 lbs of ammo and now have approximately 2-3000 lbs in our possession for destruction.  We had enough ammo in the first instance that we had to arrange for a temp magazine type storage . . . → Read More: BigCityLib Strikes Back: Do I Owe Lorne Gunter An Ice Cream Cone?

BigCityLib Strikes Back: Very Soon, I Think That Lorne Gunter Is Going To Look Stupid

He writes, of what happened up in High River , where RCMP officers took guns from homes abandoned after this summer’s floods in Alberta:

Nearly a half hour into his grilling by residents, Shardlow was detailing how many hundreds of guns had been forcibly removed from homes and how many had already been returned.

During . . . → Read More: BigCityLib Strikes Back: Very Soon, I Think That Lorne Gunter Is Going To Look Stupid

BigCityLib Strikes Back: Refuting Lorne Gunter On AGW

Not really something worth doing, because its only The Sun, but since it won’t take very long…

In his commentary on the much ballyhooed David Rose story in the weekend Daily Mail (UK), Gunter writes:

One problem with determining whether the Earth is warming is that it’s hard to measure.

The Met says 1998 was the warmest . . . → Read More: BigCityLib Strikes Back: Refuting Lorne Gunter On AGW

Alberta Diary: Time to call out the media for uncritically reprinting ‘Fraser Facts’

Sun News Network columnist Lorne Gunter, bottom centre, listens as a Fraser Institute “senior fellow” tells a wonderful story about the benefits of private health insurance. Right wing bloviators may not be exactly as … oh, never mind! Below: The real Mr. Gunter.

Claims by the market-fundamentalist Fraser Institute widely rebroadcast by mainstream . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Time to call out the media for uncritically reprinting ‘Fraser Facts’

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

Assorted content for your Sunday reading.

– Plenty of commentators are using the Labour Day weekend to discuss the place of workers in Canadian society. Sid Ryan notes that depressed wages are bad news for Canada’s economy generally. And Morna Ballantyne and Steven Staples point out the need for unions to reach out beyond their . . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

Alberta Diary: Some Alberta seniors will soon be eating better meals – they can thank the union for them

AUPE’s powerful viral video on the unappetizing 21-day menu. Below: Former Alberta Health Services CEO Stephen Duckett, Alberta Health Minister Fred Horne.

One of the least successful experiments of the short, unhappy reign of Stephen Duckett as CEO of Alberta Health Services was the so-called 21-day menu, the unpalatable tinfoil- and plastic-wrapped . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Some Alberta seniors will soon be eating better meals – they can thank the union for them

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your Sunday reading.

– It’s a few months old, but the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy’s comparison of U.S. states with a zero personal income tax to those with the highest tax levels looks like one of the most clear refutations yet of the idea that there’s any real economic benefit . . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

BigCityLib Strikes Back: Fool Me Once, Shame On You; Fool Me Twice, And I Must be Lorne Gunter

The latest tranche  of census information, like the material released back in February, is from the still mandatory short form.  It is the long form that was compromised by the government’s decision.  Lorne Gunter, who also covers the global warming controversy and would, you would think, possess at least a single smidgen of  statistical knowledge, still cannot tell the . . . → Read More: BigCityLib Strikes Back: Fool Me Once, Shame On You; Fool Me Twice, And I Must be Lorne Gunter