Alberta Politics: Now that he can’t be Mr. Congeniality any more, is Saskatchewan’s Brad Wall eyeing the exit?

PHOTOS: I’m sick of this shifty eyed shot of Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall too, but it’s the only decent royalty free photo of the guy I can find. Below top and bottom: Jason Kenney and Brian Jean, two Alberta Conservatives who used to have nothing bad to say about Mr. Wall. What will they say ...

Alberta Politics: ‘Oh, there you go Bradsplaining again!’ Like it or not, Brads from Saskatchewan just can’t control their Bradsplaining

PHOTOS: Federal Conservative leadership candidate and Bradsplainer Brad Trost shows he’s hip to the jive with this newfangled technology stuff. (Photo from BradTrost.ca.) Below: Brad Wall, another well-known Bradsplainer, Bradsplaining, and blogger word-coiner Dave Cournoyer, kitted out to observe one of Rebel Media’s rallies. Uh-oh! We’re about to be “Bradsplained”! Bradsplaining, a useful coinage by ...

Susan on the Soapbox: Notley’s Budget: Myths and Facts

The NDP government unveiled its budget on Thursday.  The conservatives reacted as if the government dropped a neutron bomb on the people. Wildrose leader Brian Jean worried that parents driving their kids to hockey practice would end up in the poor house if they had to pay an extra 4.5 cents per litre for gas.  ...

Alberta Politics: If you were secretly relieved by yesterday’s NDP Alberta budget, you weren’t alone …

PHOTOS: Alberta Finance Minister Joe Ceci addresses the media during a lockup early yesterday afternoon in Edmonton before reading the 2016 Budget Speech to the Legislature. Below: CFIB Alberta spokesperson Richard Truscott, Edmonton-Centre MLA David Shepherd and author and environmentalist Naomi Klein. Admit it, Alberta, after yesterday afternoon’s Budget Speech was read by Finance Minister ...

Alberta Politics: Meditations on booms, busts, oil prices, sales taxes, Albertans and their governments

PHOTOS: Alberta in the spring of 2014. Actual Alberta drilling operations may not have appeared exactly as illustrated. Below: Conservative premiers Peter Lougheed and Ralph Klein. If God gives us another oil boom like the one us Albertans are all praying for nowadays, what are the chances that this time we won’t piss it all ...

Song of the Watermelon: The Case for ‘Yes’ in Metro Vancouver’s Transit Referendum

Well, anybody could have called this one. According to a new survey by Insights West, 53 per cent of residents plan to vote No in the upcoming 2015 Metro Vancouver Transportation and Transit Plebiscite. Only 38 per cent say they will vote Yes to the proposed half-percentage-point sales tax increase to help fund more buses, ...

Politics, Re-Spun: The So-Called Transit Referendum: Don’t Be Duped!

By Emily Griffiths The Transit referendum “Yes” campaign has been asserting itself all over Facebook, Twitter, neighbourhood news boxes, and I can’t help but ask myself, Since when is increasing a flat tax a leftist thing to do? Oh! The word “transit” has been attached to the newest proposed consumer flat tax increase, therefore rendering ...

Bill Longstaff: A sales tax for Alberta?

Alberta Premier Jim Prentice recently committed heresy. Faced with plummeting oil prices and the possibility of a $500-million deficit, the premier actually encouraged discussion about adopting a sales tax. “I don’t think Albertans generally advocate a sales tax,” he said, “but I’m prepared to be educated and to hear from people.” And he’s not alone. ...

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: A Little Heresy – Alberta Style

So, according to Premier Prentice, the downturn in oil prices is going to create an $11 Billion hole in provincial revenues, and is now talking about putting the brakes on all kinds of infrastructure spending, including a new cancer hospital in Calgary. Okay, that’s a significant chunk of change.  Let’s talk about this for a ...

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: Alberta’s Sales Tax Phobia

Ever since I was a child growing up, Alberta has made a big deal about how we don’t have a sales tax.  Back in the day, when resource revenues were perhaps more predictable because the markets didn’t move as fast as they do now, perhaps that was a good thing. I had started to advocate ...

Song of the Watermelon: Cleaning Up Gordon Campbell’s Mess

According to every poll and every projection by every firm and every commentator, Christy Clark and her Liberal Party are about to be handed an unbalanced ass-whooping of the sort we British Columbians seem to enjoy dishing out to governing parties once every decade or so. Naturally, when this happens, I will be singing and ...

Alberta Diary: Summit call for ATB Financial privatization sets stage for rural Alberta banking battle

The Alberta Treasury Branch agency brings rural financial services to Czar, Alberta. You’ve got to know offices like this are doomed if ATB Financial is privatized. Below: William Aberhart in 1937, the year before he founded Alberta Treasury Branches; banker George Gosbee, in his role as Doogie Howser, CEO. Assuming at least some of the ...

Song of the Watermelon: Carrots and Sticks: How to Fund Public Transit

If we as a planet are going to avoid passing over the two-degree threshold of runaway climate change, we are going to have to start rationing greenhouse gas emissions. Efficiency gains in transportation will inevitably need to be part of that project. Put another way, emissions per person per kilometre will have to diminish, which ...