Alberta Politics: Merry Christmas to all! Santa is bringing presents for everyone this holiday, regardless of political orientation

PHOTOS: Merry Christmas! Your blogger with a man who can penetrate North American air defences with ease. Russian President Vladimir Putin may not appear exactly as illustrated. (Joke.) Below: Political strategist Stephen Carter with the same blogger; Alberta pollster Janet Brown; Conservative strategist Alan Hallman, who is now associated with Jason Kenney’s Alberta Progressive Conservative ...

Politics and its Discontents: Stephen Harper and The Canada Revenue Agency: The Unholy Alliance Continues

I have written many times about the unholy partnership between Stephen Harper and the Canada Revenue Agency that takes the form of an auditing witch hunt of those charities that in any way offer criticism of Dear Leader’s policies. The latest news offers further proof that official avowals of impartiality in selecting who will be ...

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper: The Political Predator and the E.I. Scam

It was the PMO's Picture of the Week. Stephen Harper receiving a report on the situation in Ukraine from the brutish former Premier of Ontario Mike Harris.In his never-ending pursuit of the ethnic vote.Even though, sadly for him, the only ones who covered the event were his PMO flunkies.Because even the dullards in the MSM could ...

Pushed to the Left and Loving It: Tim Hudak, the GOP and Voter Suppression

I posted recently about an Ontario conservative scheme to suppress the vote in the upcoming provincial election. A Party calling themselves None of the Above could be traced back to Mike Harris. Recently it was also discovered that several Ontario households received letters from the PC Party with incorrect information, that would have sent them ...

Pushed to the Left and Loving It: None of the Above and Latinos for Reform

During the 2010 U.S. mid-term election campaign, a group of “discontents” emerged, calling themselves Latinos for Reform.   President Obama had secured most of the Latino vote in 2008, so the group’s message was that Obama had let them down.  Given the Republican’s anti-immigration policies, LFR knew that voting GOP was not an option, so ...

Pushed to the Left and Loving It: Beware of Those Bearing Pledges. They Might Just Have to Honour Them

Men should pledge themselves to nothing; for reflection makes a liar of their resolution.  Sophocles Pledges are nothing new for politicians.  Some are broad in scope, like FDR’s pledge to a New Deal for Americans, or President Obama’s pledge to not raise taxes on anyone making less than $250,000 a year. In 1994, Newt Gingrich’s ...

Pushed to the Left and Loving It: Tim Hudak Wants to be Like Mitch Daniels. No Wonder. He’s Another Mike Harris

Indiana- Louise Cohoon was at home when her 80-year-old mother called in a panic from Terre Haute: The $97 monthly Medicaid payment she relied on to supplement her $600-a-month income had been cut without warning by a private company that had taken over the state’s welfare system. (1) Hold that thought. The Globe and Mail ...

Pushed to the Left and Loving It: Should Hudak Be Running on an Anti-Union Platform Before he Has His Hands on the Public Purse?

In 1999, Mike Harris ran in Ontario on an anti-union platform, promising to get tough with union bosses. The backlash was immediate, but Harris wasn’t worried. He had a secret weapon. Deceit. In the run-up to the election he had pulled out all the stops, beginning with advertising at the expense of the Ontario taxpayer. ...

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and the Disgraceful Adventures of the Con Regime

As I've mentioned recently, I can't be sure whether Stephen Harper is now in a state of total denial, or totally broken by scandal, or just totally insane.But either way it's deeply disturbing, and one does have to question whether he's fit to remain in office. For there he was in the House of Commons today, ...

Politics and its Discontents: The Common Sense Revolution Redux ( A.K.A. Tiny Tim Roars)

H/t Theo Moudakis If you have resided in Ontario for some years, and were of a certain age when Ontario’s Common Sense Revolution was conducted by Mike ‘The Knife’ Harris, you will recall it was a time of great upheaval that, contrary to the mythologizing that the right-wing so much enjoys fabricating, left the bulk ...

Trashy's World: Tim Hudak is sooooo out of touch!

Of course he is out of touch. It’s Tim Hudak that we’re talking about here, folks. That’s not a big surprise. But what is a surprise isthe extent of his disconnect. His “1 million jobs”, *ahem* “plan” is perhaps the most ill-thought out set of proposals I have ever seen rolled out in an election ...

Alberta Diary: Advice to progressives: Don’t airbrush Jim Flaherty’s record out of sympathy for his family

The late Jim Flaherty tries on the traditional new shoes just before delivering his 2012 federal budget. Below, some of Mr. Flaherty’s friends and colleagues: former Ontario premier Mike Harris, in whose government he also served; Prime Minister Stephen Harper; Toronto Mayor Rob Ford. Decent people naturally feel sympathy with the loved ones of any ...

Alberta Diary: Shining you on: Alison Redford calls for a little selective sunshine on civil service salaries

The scene in February 2014: CBC investigative journalist Charles Rusnell pores through a list of senior Alberta civil service salaries as horrified deputy ministers and university professors look on. Actual Alberta public employees may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: Associate Minister of Accountability, Transparency and Transformation Don Scott, left, with some guy his party ...

Alberta Diary: How will we get back to the 19th Century without Stephen Harper? Why he should go, and won’t

A forlorn Richard Nixon waves goodbye to Washington for the last time from the steps of the presidential helicopter on Aug. 9, 1974. Don’t count on Prime Minister Stephen Harper to do the same thing any time soon, even if it destroys his party. Below: Stephen Harper looking appropriately gloomy in a Toronto Star photo ...

Politics and its Discontents: Some Thoughts on ‘Tea Party Tim’

I wish I could take credit for the title sobriquet describing Ontario Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak, but that distinction lies with Val Patrick of Hamilton whose letter, along with several others that appear in today’s Star, I am taking the liberty of reproducing below. Enjoy! Tea Party Tim Hudak has launched into another round ...

Politics and its Discontents: A Timely Reminder

Young Tim Hudak, the leader of the Ontario Progressive Conservative Party, probably commands much more press coverage than he deserves. He certainly has been the object of more than one of my own blog posts, in part because of the fascinating window he opens into the mind of that segment of the electorate which believes ...

Alberta Diary: The cheek of Jim Flaherty … expensing his Maybelline while preaching austerity!

Finance Minister Jim Flaherty before application of his Smashbox and Cover Girl. Below: Mr. Flaherty after his makeup makeover. Warning: Any resemblance to J. Edgar Hoover is certainly purely coincidental. Below that: FBI icon J. Edgar Hoover and the real Mr. Flaherty. Jim Flaherty portrait by Edmonton artist William Prettie. Who would have thought that ...

Politics and its Discontents: A New Threat To Seniors

I think we are all aware, at least on an intellectual level, that the gift of a relatively long life comes at a cost: physical and sometimes cognitive diminishment, myriad aches and pains, both physical and emotional, and susceptibility to scams and unethical relatives. Sadly, a new endangerment is on the horizon. Former Ontario Premier ...

An individual with opinions.: Ontario Progressive Conservatives embrace contradictions.

I was browsing through the Ontario Progressive Conservative ‘Party History’ page, and I noticed the amusing contradictions. Before that, let’s start with their more recent leader/Premier, pulled directly from their Party History page, (1995-2002) Premier Michael Harris “[His] achievements included welfare reform, health care restructuring, major reductions in public spending and more efficient government.”  I ...

An individual with opinions.: Stephen Harper, Mike Harris and Ralph Klein – three case studies in the fascist inclination of neoliberal implementation.

If you’ve read Shock Doctrine by Naomi Klein, you’ll have an understanding that in order for powers to implement (radical) neoliberalism (privatization, elimination of public services, etc.), it has to be pushed through, rather rapidly – jammed through, if you will. Essentially, people benefit from government intervention, regulation, social programs and other things civilians require ...

An individual with opinions.: Stephen Harper, Mike Harris and Ralph Klein – three case studies in the fascist inclination of neoliberal implementation.

If you’ve read Shock Doctrine by Naomi Klein, you’ll have an understanding that in order for powers to implement (radical) neoliberalism (privatization, elimination of public services, etc.), it has to be pushed through, rather rapidly – jammed through, if you will. Essentially, people benefit from government intervention, regulation, social programs and other things civilians require ...

An individual with opinions.: Unions and the left in Ontario: short-sighted politically.

This isn’t a post defending Dalton McGuinty’s bravado and threats to violate the constitutional right of collective bargaining of the public sector workforces and unions – my opinion on that remains firm. Unions can be a viable political source, just as businesses can – but not nearly as much, naturally, for lack of monies and ...

An individual with opinions.: Unions and the left in Ontario: short-sighted politically.

This isn’t a post defending Dalton McGuinty’s bravado and threats to violate the constitutional right of collective bargaining of the public sector workforces and unions – my opinion on that remains firm. Unions can be a viable political source, just as businesses can – but not nearly as much, naturally, for lack of monies and ...

David Climenhaga's Alberta Diary: The trouble with A-Bombs: if the blast doesn’t get you, the fallout just might

A typical Canadian reads the news from the Ottawa Press Gallery while Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney sends another email in the background. Below: Wildrose Party House Leader Rob Anderson; former federal PC leaders Joe Clark and Peter MacKay discuss the interesting pod marked “Return to Preston Manning” they found outside a party meeting ...

Alberta Diary: The trouble with A-Bombs: if the blast doesn’t get you, the fallout just might

A typical Canadian reads the news from the Ottawa Press Gallery while Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney sends another email in the background. Below: Wildrose Party House Leader Rob Anderson; former federal PC leaders Joe Clark and Peter MacKay discuss the interesting pod marked “Return to Preston Manning” they found outside a party meeting ...