Alberta Politics: ‘NRA Strategy’ to block connection of climate change dots won’t work when the climate disaster’s in B.C.

As fear rises in British Columbia this week along with the province’s record floodwaters, the likelihood B.C. voters will connect the dots between man-made climate change and “natural” catastrophes is rising too. Politically speaking, this is not exactly good news for the determined advocates in Alberta and Ottawa of aggressive westward pipeline expansion, or the ...

Politics and its Discontents: Your Neo-liberal Government At Work

Included in the Trudeau sellout is the following: – Prepared to indemnify the project from any financial loss; -Is willing to offer this financial security to any company who wants to build the pipeline, should Kinder Morgan back out; -and, the financial backing must be fair, and beneficial to Canadians. “If Kinder Morgan isn’t interested ...

Alberta Politics: Review of Canada’s energy systems unlikely to cut through noise generated by pipeline hysteria

The furious debate about the merits of current and future pipeline projects underscores the need for an evidence-based long-term energy strategy for our country, the conclusions of a new review of Canada’s energy systems suggest. Alas, the report released yesterday by the Corporate Mapping Project and its partners at the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives ...

Susan on the Soapbox: The Country is Broken!

Just when Albertans thought things couldn’t get any worse, Jason Kenney declared the country was broken. What? Did Trumpism seep across the border while we were sleeping? Canada survived the FLQ Crisis and the War Measures Act, the bitter negotiations over the repatriation of the Canadian Constitution, and the Quebec referendum on national sovereignty where ...

Alberta Politics: Tory canoe and Trudeau too* – Liberals take advantage of Jason Kenney’s “Canada is broken” Tweet

Alberta Opposition Leader Jason Kennedy’s now famous “Canada is broken” Tweet a week ago may turn out to have been the symbolic starting point of the 2019 federal election campaign. Canada is broken. https://t.co/7tVwbAKPmc — Jason Kenney (@jkenney) April 15, 2018 Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his federal Liberals were quick to jump on the ...

Alberta Politics: Despite NDP stamp of approval, pipeline rally looked and sounded like UCP event

The situation may have felt normal to the cadre of Opposition United Conservative Party MLAs there, but I imagine some of the NDP backbenchers huddled on the steps of the Legislature in Edmonton yesterday afternoon felt pretty uncomfortable. If not, they darn well should’ve. I’m not talking about the effects of the icy wind that ...

Politics and its Discontents: Defining The National Interest

As the video included in yesterday’s post shows, Justin Trudeau likes to defend the twinning of the Trans Mountain pipeline as in ‘the national interest.” The term itself is a contentious one, given its nebulous nature. For the Prime Minister, it seems to mean economic growth, moving Alberta’s bitumen to port, and bolstering Rachel Notley’s ...

BigCityLib Strikes Back: Canada On Pipelines

” B.C. does not have the power to veto a pipeline, but the poll suggests a majority of Canadians feel the provinces should have the ability to stop a pipeline project if they don’t like it.” From the CBC poll — Frank Graves (@VoiceOfFranky) April 13, 2018

Alberta Politics: Despite NDP stamp of approval, pipeline rally on Legislature’s steps looked and sounded like a UCP event

PHOTOS: Part of the pro-pipeline crowd in front of the Alberta Legislature Thursday afternoon, with a couple of brave Indigenous counter-protesters visible in the foreground. Below: Federal Infrastructure Minister Amarjeet Sohi endured jeers, and Alberta Trade Minister Deron Bilous tried to fire up the crowd. The situation may have felt normal to the cadre of ...

Politics and its Discontents: As The Mask Slips Away

My late father-in-law, a man of deep conviction and integrity, was fond of this saying: “Socialism for the rich, capitalism for the poor.” Although he did not originate the adage, he felt it firmly described the thinking of those who control the levers of power, our governments. And now that his mask is slipping away, ...

Alberta Politics: Why demanding Ottawa intervene to bend B.C. to Alberta’s will is probably a terrible idea … from Alberta’s point of view

PHOTOS: Perfidious Pierre, villain of the National Energy Program, as the late prime minister is understood by all good Albertans to have been (Photo: Wikimedia Commons). Below: Alberta Premier Rachel Notley, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Alberta Opposition Leader Jason Kenney, and British Columbia Premier John Horgan (Photo: B.C. NDP). All Albertans are fed scary ...

Alberta Politics: Kinder Morgan threatens to pull plug on Trans Mountain Pipeline; Alberta goes wild

PHOTOS: Alberta Premier Rachel Notley in an old file photo of the author’s. Below: Opposition leader Jason Kenney, B.C. Premier John Horgan, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, and a famous flag of the Texas Revolution. Remember “peak oil”? Don’t worry about it. Nobody else does either. But last night on social media, Alberta appeared to be ...

Alberta Politics: Message to Alberta’s chattering classes: Quit misinterpreting ‘the rule of law,’ already!

PHOTOS: Protesters opposed to the Kinder Morgan Inc. Pipeline expansion megaproject in Burnaby, B.C., in May 2016 (Photo: Marlin Olynyk, Survival Media Agency, Creative Commons). They pose no threat to the rule of law. Below: Green Party of Canada Leader Elizabeth May, United Conservative Party Agriculture Critic Rick Strankman, environmentalist Mike Hudema, Alberta Premier Rachel ...

Alberta Politics: A court has now ruled in favour of the Trans Mountain Pipeline, but the power of social license is yet to be tested

PHOTOS: Federal Green Party Leader Elizabeth May under arrest Friday at the site of the Kinder Morgan pipeline terminal in Burnaby, B.C. (Photo: Rafferty Baker, CBC). Below: Burnaby South MP Kennedy Stewart before his arrest at the anti-pipeline protest (Photo: Kennedy Stewart Website), Burnaby Mayor Derek Corrigan and B.C. Environment Minister George Heyman (Photo: Wikipedia ...

Alberta Politics: Alberta Finance Minister Joe Ceci, a New Democrat, delivers a traditional Progressive Conservative budget

PHOTOS: Alberta Finance Minister Joe Ceci, Below: A slimmed-down Jason Kenney, leader of the United Conservative Party, and Stephen Mandel, Leader of the Alberta Party, at the Legislature for Mr. Ceci’s Budget Speech yesterday. Despite the predictably apocalyptic tone of Opposition political spokespeople and the unenthusiastic analysis by mainstream media commentators, if you ask me ...

Alberta Politics: If you’re an Albertan who demands low taxes, balanced budgets, and pipelines to B.C., expect to be told to look in the mirror

PHOTOS: Alberta Finance Minister Joe Ceci, a New Democrat. Below: Former Wildrose leader and United Conservative Party leadership contender Brian Jean, now retired from politics, and B.C. based environmentalist Tzeporah Berman, very much not retired from activism. By way of setting the stage for Thursday’s budget speech, Finance Minister Joe Ceci yesterday told the media ...

Susan on the Soapbox: Jason Kenney Debates a Motion

An update from the Kenney-channelling-Trump department. After weeks of flooding the airwaves with demands for an emergency debate on a motion condemning BC’s interference with the Trans Mountain pipeline Jason Kenney finally got a chance to demonstrate what he meant when he called for the government to speak with “one voice” and present a “united ...

Alberta Politics: Support in Alberta is overwhelming for ending public support of elite private schools, new poll shows

PHOTOS: Private schoolboys. In Alberta, our taxpayers subsidize ’em! (Photo: Bundesarchiv.de.) Below: Alberta Premier Rachel Notley, United Conservative Party Leader Jason Kenney, and Progress Alberta Executive Director Duncan Kinney. Now that’s interesting! According to a new poll, the idea of ending funding for elite private schools enjoys more support in Alberta than does the idea ...

Alberta Politics: Your Weekend BS: The straight poop on profanity in politics and the state of public discourse in Alberta

PHOTOS: Alberta politicians Deron Bilous, Jason Kenney, Derek Fildebrandt and Thomas Lukaszuk, all from the author’s vast collection of snapshots. Trigger warning! This dispatch from the Annals of Political Discourse in Alberta contains words unsuitable for sensitive and young readers. For a more fulsome discussion of why they are included anyway, read this chapter from ...

Alberta Politics: Climate change, climate denial and climate ironies in the wake of Alberta Legislature’s pipeline demand vote

PHOTOS: Alberta Premier Rachel Notley. Below: Soon-to-retire Alberta Liberal MLA and former party leader David Swann, Shannon Daub of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, and United Conservative Party MLAs Grant Hunter, Drew Barnes and Rick Strankman. Happy Ides of March. On Tuesday, the Alberta Legislature passed a motion declaring the support of everyone there ...

Alberta Politics: Rachel Notley and Jason Kenney find common ground, sort of … on dubious pipeline posturing

PHOTOS: Kinder Morgan Inc.’s Trans Mountain Pipeline. (Photo: Handout from Kinder Morgan Canada.) Below: Alberta Premier Rachel Notley, Alberta Opposition Leader Jason Kenney, U of A economist Andrew Leach, and British Columbia Premier John Horgan. I guess we can understand why Jason Kenney acts like Alberta has all the powers of a sovereign nation. After all, ...

Alberta Politics: Alberta’s NDP borrowed more than export-cut threats from Peter Lougheed for yesterday’s Throne Speech

PHOTOS: Premier Rachel Notley speaks with well wishers in the Alberta Legislature Rotunda yesterday after her government’s Speech from the Throne was read by Lieutenant Governor Lois Mitchell. Below: Finance Minister Joe Ceci, Ms. Mitchell and Premier Peter Lougheed, back in the day. (Mitchell and Lougheed photos: Government of Alberta.) Understandably given the nature of ...

Susan on the Soapbox: The Role of the Political Journalist

“The journalistic mission remains at its simplest: know your patch and use your knowledge to try to tell readers what’s actually going on.”– Katharine Murphy, Journalism Professor & Guardian Australia’s deputy political editor. Is it right for a political journalist to simply quote a politician’s comments without challenging their veracity or wisdom? The answer in ...

Susan on the Soapbox: The Magical Thinkers: Horgan and Kenney

I’m not sure what’s more bizarre, BC Premier John Horgan’s rationale for asking the BC Supreme Court to rule on whether BC can limit the amount of diluted bitumen flowing on Trans Mountain or Jason Kenney’s reaction to Horgan’s decision to take the issue to court. Magical molecules Horgan defended his decision to refer the ...

Susan on the Soapbox: Jason Kenney’s Non-Partisan Request

This just in from “the train-has-left-the-station” department. Let’s see, how should Alberta respond to BC’s announcement that it will limit bitumen shipments from Alberta until it completes consultation on more spill response studies? Well, the Notley government could impose a boycott of BC wines and create a Market Access Task Force that includes former political ...