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Susan on the Soapbox: Five Resolutions for Rachel Notley

Ms Soapbox’s first round of New Year’s resolutions for a politician (Alison Redford) were ignored, but she’s a persistent soul and will try again. This time she’s prepared five resolutions for Premier Rachel Notley. Stay the course on your climate … Continue reading . . . → Read More: Susan on the Soapbox: Five Resolutions for Rachel Notley

Susan on the Soapbox: Mouseland (why do people vote against their self-interest?)

“All the laws were good laws. For cats.”—Tommy Douglas

The other day I called Telus to cancel my campaign phones and internet service. Groan. After listening to canned music for 17 minutes I was transferred to a customer service rep. He took my information, argued with me when I wouldn’t give him my email . . . → Read More: Susan on the Soapbox: Mouseland (why do people vote against their self-interest?)

Susan on the Soapbox: Top 10 Door Knocking Stories

As you know Ms Soapbox tossed her hat in the ring in the Calgary Elbow by-election. On October 27, 2014 the residents of Calgary Elbow tossed it back. Nevertheless, she is of the view that everyone should run for public office at some point in their lives, if for no other reason than to experience . . . → Read More: Susan on the Soapbox: Top 10 Door Knocking Stories

Susan on the Soapbox: The Tory Airplane Scandal–Excuses, Excuses

“I am optimistic that your review will assist in securing Albertans’ continued confidence in their government and trust in their elected officials.”—Premier Redford’s letter to the Auditor General requesting a review of her compliance with the Travel and Expense policy, Mar 4, 2014

Ms Redford

Ms Redford’s optimism quickly turned to ashes. Not . . . → Read More: Susan on the Soapbox: The Tory Airplane Scandal–Excuses, Excuses

Susan on the Soapbox: Alberta’s Rogue Politics and Politicians

Is Alison Redford a rogue politician or does she belong to a rogue party?

A rogue is a dishonest or unprincipled man (or woman), a scoundrel, villain, miscreant, reprobate, good-for-nothing, ne’re-do-well, wretch, louse, crook.

The word “rogue” entered the lexicon of Alberta politics after Auditor General Merwan Saher reviewed Alison Redford’s use of government aircraft . . . → Read More: Susan on the Soapbox: Alberta’s Rogue Politics and Politicians

Susan on the Soapbox: Mr Hancock’s Cockamamie Apology

“I’m truly sorry that we allowed government to become a distraction from the vital work we’re doing on issues that matter to Albertans.”— Premier Dave Hancock to PC party supporters, May 1, 2014

Bill Clinton apologised for slavery, Tony Blair apologised for the Irish potato famine, Pope John Paul II apologised for the Crusades*and . . . → Read More: Susan on the Soapbox: Mr Hancock’s Cockamamie Apology

The Scott Ross: From Five Female Premiers To Just Two

The Parti Quebecois loss tonight shows just how hard it is for women politicians to actually have a chance in government. Pauline Marois will be the 3rd female Premier gone this year, leaving only two; Christy Clark in BC and Kathleen Wynn in Onta… . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: From Five Female Premiers To Just Two

The Scott Ross: From Five Female Premiers To Just Two

The Parti Quebecois loss tonight shows just how hard it is for women politicians to actually have a chance in government. Pauline Marois will be the 3rd female Premier gone this year, leaving only two; Christy Clark in BC and Kathleen Wynn in Ontario.Why Marois’s loss tonight is bad for women is not because of her . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: From Five Female Premiers To Just Two

Susan on the Soapbox: The Premier’s Penthouse

“We run a $40 billion corporation that matters an awful lot to the people of Alberta and the economy of this country”—former Premier Redford in the Legislature, March 4, 2014

Excuse me??? The “government” is not a “corporation”, its premier is not the CEO and the cabinet is not the executive leadership team. Unfortunately Ms . . . → Read More: Susan on the Soapbox: The Premier’s Penthouse

Susan on the Soapbox: Thank You Alison Redford

Alison Redford did two things right during her short stint as Alberta’s 14th premier. She jumped before she was pushed and she implemented an expense disclosure policy that, like ball bearings underfoot, created chaos by exposing the PC government’s culture of entitlement in painstaking and petty detail.

The PC party was completely unprepared for the . . . → Read More: Susan on the Soapbox: Thank You Alison Redford

The Scott Ross: Success Defeated Alison Redford

Alison Redford was defeated because her party is too successful. And there’s proof.In politics there wouldn’t be many opportunities to test such a theory; to really know if it was the success of Alberta’s Progressive Conservatives that caused Redford t… . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Success Defeated Alison Redford

The Scott Ross: Success Defeated Alison Redford

Alison Redford was defeated because her party is too successful. And there’s proof.

In politics there wouldn’t be many opportunities to test such a theory; to really know if it was the success of Alberta’s Progressive Conservatives that caused Redford to resign. Luckily for this experiment there just happens to be a control group next . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Success Defeated Alison Redford

The Scott Ross: From Canada’s Five Female Premiers To Three

At the start of this year Canada had five female Premiers, but now because of a few old white men the country only has three.Alberta’s Alison Redford joins Newfoundland’s Kathy Dunderdale on the list of female Premiers forced out not because voters rej… . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: From Canada’s Five Female Premiers To Three

The Scott Ross: From Canada’s Five Female Premiers To Three

At the start of this year Canada had five female Premiers, but now because of a few old white men the country only has three.

Alberta’s Alison Redford joins Newfoundland’s Kathy Dunderdale on the list of female Premiers forced out not because voters rejected them, but because their respective caucuses did. Caucuses who coincidentally happen . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: From Canada’s Five Female Premiers To Three

Susan on the Soapbox: Alison Redford: The Puppet Premier?

On March 17, 2014, following Premier Redford’s tearful introduction of her daughter Sarah to the Legislative Assembly, the ND Opposition leader Brian Mason rose to ask the Premier a critical question:*

“I regret having to ask this question, but it must be asked. To the Premier: do you have enough support to keep governing?”

The . . . → Read More: Susan on the Soapbox: Alison Redford: The Puppet Premier?

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: Craaaaack …

I wanted to like Allison Redford, I really did.  But an ongoing series of missteps, clumsy decisions such as major cuts to education and overt hostility to this province’s workers in the form of Bills 45 and 46 have thoroughly alienated this voter.

Yesterday, as Redford was at long least agreeing to pay back the . . . → Read More: The Cracked Crystal Ball II: Craaaaack …

Susan on the Soapbox: Breakfast with Hillary Clinton

Hillary Rodham Clinton was in Calgary last week to give the keynote address at a breakfast meeting of 2500 Calgarians who paid about $500 to hear her speak. Luckily my friend, the Zen Banker, invited me to attend as her guest.

Hillary is like the Chloe Diamond—brilliant, mesmerizing, multifaceted and years in the making. Agree . . . → Read More: Susan on the Soapbox: Breakfast with Hillary Clinton

Susan on the Soapbox: The Edelman Trust Barometer: Who do you trust?

The 2014 Edelman Trust Barometer is here and it’s good news—unless you work in government or business in which case you’re facing what Edelman delicately calls “a significant trust deficit”.

Edelman is a global public relations company that surveys trust levels across 27 countries by asking the public who they trust and how much they . . . → Read More: Susan on the Soapbox: The Edelman Trust Barometer: Who do you trust?

Susan on the Soapbox: Where are the Ethical Lawyers?

In the last three months Albertans have witnessed a shocking display of raw power. The Redford government calls it “delivering the responsible change Albertans voted for.” The rest of us call it the abuse of majority power to crush the rights of environmentalists, land owners and labour unions.

Black November

In Nov 2013 the . . . → Read More: Susan on the Soapbox: Where are the Ethical Lawyers?

Susan on the Soapbox: Minister Bhullar’s Revelation: 741 Children Die in Government Care

Last week Human Services Minister Manmeet Bhullar made a shocking announcement—741 children died in government foster homes or other forms of government care since 1999. This is 13 times higher than the 56 reported by the government in its annual reports and five times higher than the 145 uncovered by investigative reporters who pursued the . . . → Read More: Susan on the Soapbox: Minister Bhullar’s Revelation: 741 Children Die in Government Care

Susan on the Soapbox: The Progressive Conservatives Prepare for War–Really!

“Our organization cannot lose the grassroots donation battle to our opposition if we hope to win the war in 2016.”—Ron Renaud, PC Chief Financial Officer

Win the war in 2016???

The “war” metaphor

Before we get sucked into the “war” metaphor let’s pause and consider what George Orwell taught us—thought can corrupt language and . . . → Read More: Susan on the Soapbox: The Progressive Conservatives Prepare for War–Really!

Susan on the Soapbox: Wolves and Rabbits: The $3 billion RFP for Lab Services

I was slogging through Alberta Health Service’s Request For Proposals (RFP) for a 15 year $3 billion contract to provide lab services in the Edmonton area when the words of a former boss popped to mind…The world is divided into wolves and rabbits.

Wolves or rabbits? Care to guess what we are. Hint: we . . . → Read More: Susan on the Soapbox: Wolves and Rabbits: The $3 billion RFP for Lab Services

Susan on the Soapbox: Redford’s Performance Appraisal: The Building Alberta Plan

Alison Redford’s performance appraisal document landed on my doorstep a week ago. It’s called “The Building Alberta Plan 2013 Edition”.

In the real world a CEO undergoes an annual performance appraisal with the Compensation Committee of the board of directors. If a CEO presented Redford’s Plan to the Comp Committee he’d be lucky to keep . . . → Read More: Susan on the Soapbox: Redford’s Performance Appraisal: The Building Alberta Plan

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: The Assault On Organized Labour In Canada

In Alberta, the Redford Government just passed one of the most offensive and blatant attacks on labour that we have ever seen.  It is uniquely focused on the civil service unions in the province, but that does little to ameliorate the degree of wrong that Bills 45 and 46 represent to Alberta’s workers.

In Saskatchewan, . . . → Read More: The Cracked Crystal Ball II: The Assault On Organized Labour In Canada

Susan on the Soapbox: Redford and Mandela: Hypocrisy and Hope (Part 2)

“He would continually bring people back to the table. That was his greatest strength”—Ms Redford on Nelson Mandela*

Sadly, Ms Redford never learned how to bring “people back to the table” here in Alberta. So she resorted to the meat hammer—ramming through Bill 46 for force a “settlement” on the AUPE in order to abort . . . → Read More: Susan on the Soapbox: Redford and Mandela: Hypocrisy and Hope (Part 2)