After her change of heart, Alberta Premier Ebenezer Redford, top left, accompanied by Speaker Gene Zwozdesky in his ceremonial robes, watches as some of the members of her cabinet sit down for an unexpected dinner of Christmas turkey. Actual Alberta Progressive Conservative movers and shakers may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: actual deck chairs on the actual Titanic; a Tweet from one of the child labourers on Premier Redford’s communications staff.
Well, it’s one way to keep your more restive conservative caucus members from running across the floor of the House to join the Wildrose Opposition, I guess.
Alberta (Read more…)
AUPE President Guy Smith, left, with Alberta Liberal MLA David Swann and Wildrose House Leader Rob Anderson on the steps of the Alberta Legislature last night. Below: Part of the crowd … the pots and pans start to come out.
With blizzard conditions prevailing throughout most of Alberta today, it was still a surprise when the right-wing Wildrose Party issued a news release supporting the province’s largest union and promising if it is elected it will undo much of the damage done by the Redford Government’s unconstitutional Bills 45 and 46.
Talk about the proverbial strange political bedfellows!
There (Read more…)
More than 1,000 union members and their supporters gathered at the Alberta Legislature last night to continue protests against the Redford Government’s Bill 45, which as well as attacking unions assaults Albertans’ Charter-guaranteed right to free speech. Below: Unexpected speaker Joe Anglin; a red square from Quebec. Make it black, pin it on, leave it there till Redford’s gone!
Is it time to take our pots and pans into Alberta’s freezing streets?
Don’t laugh! This may be Alberta, but there’s a growing consensus across all parts of the political spectrum that the lying liars of the Redford Government have to (Read more…)
A couple of political pundits try to explain to Alberta Premier Alison Redford, centre, why the 77 Per Cent Solution may not be a good thing after all. Actual Alberta premiers may not appear exactly as illustrated. Note that the previous reference has nothing to do with illegal drugs or Rob Ford. Below: Ed Stelmach, Clint Dunford and Ralph Klein.
The members of Alberta’s Progressive Conservative Party – whoever they may be at this particular moment in history – endorsed Premier Alison Redford yesterday to the tune of 77 per cent.
What good will come of that, you wonder?
“Why (Read more…)
It’s not really about the crack, or at least it’s not all about the crack. The crack-centred Rob Ford jokes, skits, songs and Internet memes certainly have been entertaining, but Ford’s recent crack use is but one of the many reasons he is hopelessly unqualified to be mayor of the largest city in Canada.
It’s about the lying, the cover-ups, the hypocrisy, the unpunished crimes, the nepotism, the football charity bribe scheme, the blatant disregard for the rules, the pilfering of expensive government resources for personal benefit, the bigotry and discrimination, the bullying, the back-room deals, the promise-breaking, the unexplained (Read more…)
Doug Elniski, back and centre, always the tallest guy in the room, at Alison Redford’s side on Oct. 2, 2011. Below: Kirk Patterson aboard Silk Purse somewhere, by the look of the clipping snatched from his Facebook page, in Japan; the ingenious Sir Winston Churchill.
My university friend Kirk Patterson, who is alone aboard a sailboat called Silk Purse somewhere along the coast of Japan, has been sending entertaining dispatches via Facebook reporting hopefully that the rat plaguing him may finally have abandoned ship.
I suggested to Kirk – who had been planning to circumnavigate the island but has (Read more…)
A poster advertising last night’s NDP-Wildrose leaders’ debate at the University of Alberta in Edmonton. Below: Odd couple Brian Mason and Danielle Smith, captured in electrons by Dave Cournoyer of the Daveberta.ca blog.
Alberta New Democratic Party Leader Brian Mason and Wildrose Party Leader Danielle Smith debated each other at the University of Alberta in Edmonton last night.
According to those who were there, their verbal jabs were highly entertaining. “Ms. Smith and Mr. Mason playfully sparred over issues facing the energy sector, pipelines, the economy, post-secondary education, health care and public services,” wrote blogger Dave Cournoyer, who (Read more…)
This clip from the movie Tommy Boy is almost a re-enactment of a typical scene from Rob Ford’s life. Here are a couple more Ford-like clips from Tommy Boy: clip1 and clip 2, and here are six ways the fictional character Tommy Callahan (played by Chris Farley) differs from the real-life disgraced mayor of Toronto.
1) Tommy graduated from college, after seven years and with barely passing grades, but graduated nonetheless.
Robby flunked out of the political science program at Carleton University and later gave a BS excuse that he did so to help his druggie (Read more…)
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 out loud when I read in the Calgary Herald that Alberta Premier Alison Redford had accused her far-right opposition, the Wildrose Party, of being an organization ready to break any rule to win.
Not that I doubt Ms. Redford for a moment on this one, which she (Read more…)
Your blogger with CBC investigative reporter Charles Rusnell. Below: Edmonton-Manning MLA Peter Sandhu; Mr. Sandhu with Alison Redford in a Tory Party photo grabbed from the Daveberta.ca blog. The photo-bomber is Calgary-Fort MLA Wayne Cao.
You’d think it would be easy to run a petroleum-soaked, cash-rich jurisdiction like Alberta, but a day seldom seems to pass out here on the western edge of the Great Plains without our governing Progressive Conservative Party suffering another pratfall or embarrassment.
But how many Albertans know that so many of these scandals bedevilling our permanent governing party have been uncovered by the same (Read more…)
The other day this blogger went to a Manning Centre training seminar on visual communications — on building better looking websites, designing election signs, and creating campaign literature. This is the same Manning Centre that has been in the news recently and been a target of a fair bit of speculation on their efforts. As [...]
Is there really any point in talking about it?
Almost every blogger I’ve read in Manitoba who’s covered political issues had mentioned that the NDP has been up to something. Manitoba Hydro Smash-and-Grab, Public Utilities Board Gouge-and-Grab, WRHA Mad-Cow-Expansion-and-Grab, PST Change-The-Law-To-Take-More-Money-and-Grab…
But what’s the point in talking about it anymore? So we keep whining about it, and then maybe if we’re “lucky” the NDP will lose and the “Progressive” Conservatives will win and we can start complaining about the upcoming Hydro Privatization-and-Switch, or the Health Care Slash-and-Switch, or the Education Blah-Blah-and-Switch…
It’s gangrenous (Read more…)
“Post-secondary collective bargaining,” Alberta style. Advanced Education Minister Thomas Lukaszuk and a post-secondary employer negotiator rig the deck, foreground, while a faculty association negotiators ponder what’s just happened. Actual Alberta bargaining teams may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: The real Mr. Lukaszuk, former advanced ed minister Steve Khan.
As is well known, Advanced Education Minister Thomas Lukaszuk has sent a letter to the boards of all of Alberta post-secondary institutions instructing them on what their bargaining position and final wage offer must be in negotiations with their faculty associations and staff unions.
The position can be summed up in (Read more…) phrase, now frequently heard on college and university campuses throughout the province, “Zero, zero, zero.”
Oh, wait – and I mean that literally – after three years of nothing you can ask nicely for a 2-per-cent raise. If you’re lucky, and unlike Athabasca University your institution’s . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Has Alberta pioneered an unlegislated ban on collective bargaining?
Alberta Premier Alison Redford, second from right, with Environment Minister Diana McQueen and Culture Minister Health Klimchuk, watch as Deputy Premier Tom Lukaszuk celebrates the Progressive Conservative Party’s victory on this day last year with a sip of champagne. Actual PC cabinet members may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: the real Premier Redford, swearing the oath of office.
Today is the first anniversary of Alberta Premier Alison Redford’s unexpected but comfortable election victory.
If you follow Alberta politics, you’re bound to have been reading a lot of stuff lately about how unpopular Ms. Redford is just now and how (Read more…) really has no reason to celebrate.
“There is no cause to party,” the Edmonton Journal’s political columnist wrote gloomily, recommending against her drinking anything more expensive than Baby Duck.
He, like everyone else at the moribund local rag and its similarly declining Postmedia counterpart in Calgary, . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Never mind the pundits: Alberta Premier Alison Redford has plenty to celebrate today
Allison Redford has a problem. Between mayor Mandel unleashing his fury on her government and the University of Alberta’s rage at the province’s letters of expectation progressives across the province are finally coming to see that Redford is simply not on their side. For the Liberals who saw that supporting the Progressive Conservatives preferable to [...]
Finance Minister Doug Horner preps Albertans for yesterday’s budget. Actual Alberta finance ministers may not appear exactly as illustrated – but that’s the trick, isn’t it? Below: The real Doug Horner.
All in all, I guess, you could make a good case this was a pretty lousy budget.
It’s deeply confusing, as without any doubt the Alberta government intended, and there are a couple of real disasters lurking in its pages – got kids in post-secondary education, anyone?
But in the aftermath of the Alberta Budget Speech read this afternoon by Progressive Conservative Finance Minister Doug Horner, who was wearing
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Close enough for government work: Alberta Tories manage to hold their centre-right turf
Weakened but still standing: The mighty Tory edifice. Don’t panic. This is a metaphor! Below: Alberta Premier Alison Redford.
It’s interesting to juxtapose the results of two new polls on related but different topics that were released yesterday – a Think HQ poll of Alberta voter intentions and an Environics poll of Albertans attitudes about taxes and public services.
The results of the former were published in the afternoon by CTV; the results of latter were released in the morning by the Alberta Federation of Labour, for which the survey was done.
If you believe them, the Think
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Two polls show how, and maybe why, Alberta’s Tory coalition is crumbling
The Progressive Conservatives are preparing for a multi-year battle with the teachers of Alberta. With rhetoric such as “protect the classroom” (implying that teachers are working against teaching and children) and firing off emails to thousands of teachers in likely breach of privacy laws (which is currently being investigated by the Privacy Commissioner), it’s obvious. The [...]
Neocon Icarus Tom Flanagan (appropriately covered, thank goodness) at right, falls to earth after flying too close to the sun. Preston Manning hovers nearby. The flameout of actual neoconservative avatars may not be exactly as illustrated. Below: Health Minister Fred Horne, Education Minister Jeff Johnson, and retired judge John Z. Vertes, who are the people this post is really about.
Even word that Tom Flanagan, the Icarus of Canada’s neoconservative movement, had flown too close to the sun and was coming down to earth in flames was not enough to save Alberta’s crisis-prone Progressive Conservative government from more pain!
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Despite neocon flameout distraction, Redford Tory bumbling dominates Alberta news
Razzle-dazzle, sis-boom-bah, balanced budgets, rah-rah-rah! Danielle Smith and the Wild Rosehip Tea Party yell squad cheers for Alison Redford’s Tory team’s worst plays on the field. The actual Alberta opposition may not be quite as illustrated. Below: Ms. Redford and B.C. Premier Christie Clark. Why are these two premiers smiling?
British Columbia and Alberta, Canada’s two westernmost provinces, have lots in common.
Both have economies that rely heavily on volatile natural resources, well-educated, diverse and generally socially progressive populations, and Westminster-style parliamentary legislatures in beautiful old buildings.
Both are also governed by irresponsible neoconservative coalitions with misleading names that
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: A Tale of Two Provinces: B.C. NDP and Wild Rosehip Tea Party show why opposition matters
21% of Albertans, according to a Leger poll, are undecided as to who they would support in an election. So who is going to convert these 1 in 5 Albertans? It’s not the Wildrose. They’re a known quantity, for good or ill. Nor will it be the Progressive Conservatives, racked by scandal and ebbing in the polls [...]
The Alberta Progressive Conservative position on negotiations with the doctors explained. Yes, we’re just as confused as you are. Below: AMA President Michael Giuffre. Premier Alison Redford.
Every day, it just gets weirder and weirder.
The day before yesterday, we’re told, Alberta Premier Alison Redford waded into her health minister’s already strangely muddled negotiations with the province’s physicians to state that the only way the docs will get a raise is if the province goes back to charging health care premiums.
What’s more, she said in an impromptu news conference in Calgary, there’s no way that’s ever going to happen.
. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Redford to docs: There’s no raise, and you’re not getting it!