Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Morning Links

This and that for your Thursday reading. – Karl Nerenberg writes about Bill Morneau’s conflicts of interest – with particular attention to the NDP’s justified criticism of legislation aimed at privatizing pension management to benefit forms like Morneau’s. And Brent Patterson discusses a push back against the Manitoba PCs’ plan to privatize public services through ...

Alberta Politics: Which way will the wedge slice? Alberta NDP and UCP adopt opposite strategies on gay-straight alliances

PHOTOS: Jason Kenney may be the UCP’s leader now, but he’s still doing his best to appeal to his red-meat social conservative base. (Photo: Dave Cournoyer, Daveberta.ca.) Below: NDP Education Minister David Eggen, NDP Premier Rachel Notley, and UCP House Leader Jason Nixon. The impassioned, at times bitter, tone of the debate over the latest ...

Alberta Politics: One year has passed since Donald Trump’s election and, here we all are, still in Crazytown!

PHOTOS: Donald J. Trump. (Photo: Gage Skidmore, Wikimedia Commons.) He’s President of the United States, you know! Below: Hillary Clinton (Wikimedia Commons), who won the vote but lost the 2016 U.S. presidential election, and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who promised to fix Canada’s electoral system, and didn’t. Today is the first anniversary of the ...

Alberta Politics: This is not just what terrorism looks like; it’s what a failed state looks like

PHOTOS: Is Old Glory, as the American flag was once known, now the banner of a failed state? Below: Donald Trump, president of the United States, divider, deceiver and denier in chief, incompetent and seemingly powerless to change anything (Photo: Flickr, Gage Skidmore.) “AT LEAST 58 DEAD AND 500 HURT IN LAS VEGAS AFTER GUNMAN ...

In This Corner: The Return of Stuff Happens, week 37: Terrorism in my backyard

You know that it could happen in your town. You just don’t expect that it will. I went to the Edmonton Eskimo game last night, and as I entered the stadium I was struck by how much security there is today. Bags are searched, and for some reason wands were used to check random fans ...

Accidental Deliberations: Book Review: Politics Without Stories

David Ricci’s Politics Without Stories was released in the midst of an election campaign which upended many assumptions about U.S. politics. But it nonetheless offers a plausible explanation for much of the U.S.’ political environment as it’s continued to evolve – while leaving open what strike me as interesting questions as to whether what he ...

In This Corner: The Return of Stuff Happens, week 30: Bad boy gets caught with hands in cookie jar

The political career of Derek Fildebrandt is coming to an end. We hope. Fildebrandt, the United Conservative Party (and fanantical former Wildrose) MLA for Strathmore-Brooks, was revealed last week to be cashing in on his taxpayer-supported rental apartment in downtown Edmonton. Out-of-town MLAs get $23,160 a year to own or lease property in Edmonton. Fildebrandt ...

In This Corner: The Return of Stuff Happens, week 20: RIP, USA

Donald Trump, the Leader of the Free World crown, officially relinquished the title on Thursday when he announced that the U.S. – the second-biggest polluter in the world –would withdraw from the Paris Climate Change Accord. In stepping aside from the Leadership of the Free World position, the U.S. has now thrown its lot in ...

In This Corner: The Return of Stuff Happens, week 19: Will there be ‘Scheer madness’?

At long last, the federal Conservatives have a new leader … and it’s NOT Maxime ‘Mad Max’ Bernier, who would have been the first deeply libertarian leader of a major Canadian political party. After a vote counting process that was only slightly less difficult to understand than watching Game of Thrones midway through a season (the ...

Alberta Politics: Madmen in the White House … this time it’s a thing, not just a ‘strategy’

PHOTOS: U.S. President Richard Nixon pointing the way to the exit for Donald Trump’s benefit. Below: Mr. Nixon about to board the helicopter that would take him away from Washington for the last time in an official capacity; a recent photo of President Trump; the sinister Dr. Henry Kissinger, then and now.  Richard Nixon wasn’t ...

Alberta Politics: Rachel Notley’s tough talk on pipelines evokes the Peter Lougheed Era of energy policy confrontation

PHOTOS: Alberta Premier Rachel Notley at yesterday’s news conference in Edmonton. (Photo: Chris Schwarz, Government of Alberta) Below: Earth scientist David Hughes (Post Carbon Institute photo), B.C. Premier Christy Clark (B.C. Government photo), and B.C. NDP Leader John Horgan. Using language that, intentionally or not, evoked the Peter Lougheed Era of Tory energy policy confrontation ...

In This Corner: The Return of Stuff Happens, week 16: I’m done with the NHL.

When the Oilers are eliminated from the Stanley Cup playoffs — maybe tonight, maybe Wednesday, maybe in the next series — I can officially quit watching hockey. I  can’t do it right now. That would be like watching 90 minutes of a two-hour movie and turning it off, or reading 275 pages of a 350-page ...

Alberta Politics: Donald Trump helps build the case for Rachel Notley’s social license policy on energy exports

PHOTOS: U.S. President Donald Trump – he’s lookin’ at you, Canada. (Photo by Gage Skidmore, Flickr.) Below: Alberta Premier Rachel Notley. If Alberta’s conservatives imagined U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision immediately after his election last November to push the Keystone XL Pipeline project forward would provide an opening for them to attack the Alberta NDP ...

Alberta Politics: Make American Dairy Farms Great Again! Adopt supply management

PHOTOS: Dairy cows in a mass milking machine at a U.S. farm, a pretty well run one from the look of this photo from the Wikipedia. Below: Not what dairy farming looks like any more; U.S. President Donald Trump, hero to the Globe and Mail editorial board, giving Canada, or someone, the what for. Never ...

In This Corner: The Return of Stuff Happens, week 13: Dumb, dumber, dumbest

Remember last week, when Pepsi was eviscerated for its incredibly tone-deaf ‘Pepsi brings world peace’ ad? Ah, such innocent times. This week, United Airlines made the Pepsi debacle look no worse than a misplaced apostrophe. By now, you’ve seen or almost certainly heard about the violent removal of passenger from a United flight in Chicago. ...

In This Corner: The Return of Stuff Happens, week 10: The beginning of the end for The Donald?

So, what’s the over/under on the Trump presidency? I would have thought two years before he was impeached, but now I’m leaning towards one year. Eighteen months, max. Trump has now lost his first big promise, to repeal and replace Obamacare. His plan alienated his own party to such a degree that he couldn’t get ...

In This Corner: The Return of Stuff Happens, week 9: Jason does Alberta

As expected, Jason Kenney easily won the leadership of the Progressive Conservative Party of Alberta at a convention in Calgary on Saturday, with about 75% of the vote. Kenney was a steamroller who flattened his two remaining challengers, an inconspicuous MLA named Richard Starke, and an even less conspicuous guy named Byron Nelson. The other ...

Alberta Politics: The Trump-like hallmark of Jason Kenney’s campaign: Its singular lack of ideas

PHOTOS: Jason Kenney crashing the Throne Speech party at the Legislature last week. Below: U.S. President Donald Trump; the late Ralph Klein, premier of Alberta; Rachel Notley, the present premier of Alberta; and political commentator Ricardo Acuna. Jason Kenny, the social conservative social media enthusiast who will almost certainly become leader of the Progressive Conservative ...

Democracy Under Fire: The Twit and the Future of Democracy in the U.S.

With a blog focused upon democracy my regular readers may have been wondering how I could not write about the real and ongoing threat to democracy occurring to the south of us with the installation of a authoritative but unstable narcissist elected president. I simply don’t know what to say that has not already been ...

Democracy Under Fire: The Twit and the Future of Democracy in the U.S.

With a blog focused upon democracy my regular readers may have been wondering how I could not write about the real and ongoing threat to democracy occurring to the south of us with the installation of a authoritative but unstable narcissist elected president. I simply don’t know what to say that has not already been ...

Alberta Politics: Canada had better plan for an unprecedented refugee crisis as U.S. lurches toward ‘ethnic cleansing’

PHOTOS: Austrian police and Syrian refugees crowd a train platform in Vienna on Sept. 4, 2015 (photo by Josh Zakary). Below: U.S. President Donald Trump (photo by Gage Skidmore) and a Syrian refugee camp in Turkey in 2016 (European Parliament photos). Canadians should be deeply concerned about stated plans by the Trump Regime in the ...

In This Corner: The Return of Stuff Happens, week 7: Horror in Sweden?

Doesn’t it seem like weeks ago that Justin Trudeau visited Donald Trump? It was the story on this side of the border for days. But Trudeau had barely lifted off from Washington and his visit was forgotten, overwhelmed by a tsunami of terrible Trump news. But let’s briefly look back on the Trump-Trudeau visit, which ...

Alberta Politics: What you should worry about when you worry about President Trump – hint: not where Ivanka sits!

PHOTOS: The controversial photo of Mr. Donald, Ivanka Trump and Enrique Peña Nieto … Wait! That’s Joe Trudeau! Below: U.S. Presidents whose “First Ladies” weren’t necessarily their wives, for one reason or another … Thomas Jefferson, who predated the whole First Lady phenomenon; Martin van Buren, a widower; Grover Cleveland, who married while he was ...

Democracy Under Fire: A Lament For The World

First he said that he would make America great again.And the naive believed him.Then he said he would create more jobs.And the out of work cheered.Then he said stop the Mexican immigrants.And the bigoted flocked to join him.Then he said he would relinquish control of his companies..And his followers believed him.Then he was elected by ...

Democracy Under Fire: A Lament For The World

First he said that he would make America great again.And the naive believed him.Then he said he would create more jobs.And the out of work cheered.Then he said stop the Mexican immigrants.And the bigoted flocked to join him.Then he said he would relinquish control of his companies..And his followers believed him.Then he was elected by ...