Alberta Politics: The Week in Review: We know where the Wildrosers are, but where’s Jason?

ILLUSTRATIONS: Where’s Jason? If anyone spots PC Leader Jason Kenney, who doesn’t have to show up in the Legislature because he’s not an MLA, please let a responsible grownup know. Below: Education Minister David Eggen and Opposition Leader Brian Jean. There’s no doubt about where Mr. Jean will be found, although there’s some question about ...

daveberta.ca – Alberta Politics: Alberta’s Conservatives are obsessed with Gay-Straight Alliances

Following Progressive Conservative Party leader Jason Kenney’s comments to the Calgary Postmedia editorial board fifteen days ago when he came out in favour of allowing schools to inform parents when students join a student-initiated Gay-Straight Alliance club, Alberta’s conservative politicians have tied themselves in knots over the issue. Gay-Straight Alliances are student-initiated clubs meant empower students to create safe environments ...

Alberta Politics: Two by-elections, three probes, and plenty more: All the Alberta political news that’s fit to print

PHOTO: The decision desk at AlbertaPolitics.ca calls it for Conservative candidates Bob Benzen and Stephanie Kusie in two Calgary by-elections yesterday. Actual Alberta political bloggers may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: Mr. Benzen and Ms. Kusie, former Conservative premier Alison Redford, Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall and Wildrose Opposition Leader Brian Jean. Conservatives motor to ...

Alberta Politics: Jason Kenney and the GSA reverse-tip-line brouhaha: Is this conservative turning into the Anita Bryant of Canada?

PHOTOS: Is Jason Kenney turning into Canada’s Anita Bryant? Actual Canadian politicians may not appear exactly as illustrated. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons.) Below: The real Jason Kenney, and singer-songwriters k.d. lang and Boy George. Is Jason Kenney turning into the Anita Bryant of Canada? If you’re of a certain age, you won’t be able to forget ...

Alberta Politics: Message to Jason Kenney: Alberta changed while you were away being a big shot in Ottawa!

PHOTOS: Progressive Conservative Leader Jason Kenney. Why does this man look so puzzled? Below: Entertainer k.d. lang; the late Ralph Klein, premier of Alberta when Jason Kenney left for Ottawa; Edmonton Journal columnist Paul Simons; and Nolan Crouse, until yesterday the only candidate to lead the Alberta Liberal Party. When Jason Kenney stepped onto the ...

daveberta.ca – Alberta Politics: Jason Kenney’s appeal to social conservatives targets Gay-Straight Alliances

Perhaps not completely understanding how much acrimony the Gay-Straight Alliance issue caused his party back in 2014, recently selected Progressive Conservative leader Jason Kenney brought the issue back to the forefront this week. According to reports from Postmedia, when asked about Gay-Straight Alliances, Kenney told the editorial board of the Calgary Herald and Sun that he would allow schools ...

Alberta Politics: Education Minister deserves high marks for ordering recalcitrant religious schools to obey GSA law, but more is needed

PHOTOS: Alberta Education Minister David Eggen. Below: Edmonton lawyer Dan Scott, Kristopher Wells of the U of A’s Institute for Sexual Minority Studies and Services and Brian Coldwell of the Independent Baptist Christian Education Society. Sometimes a government just needs to do the right thing and let the chips fall where they may. Alberta Education ...

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 ...