09.01.2016 10:15 AM

Two Western snippets from next week’s column

I’ve picked these two because (a) I remain a displaced Westerner and (b) I’m a bit bored and want to rile folks up. 

Out in BC, Christy Clark owns the strongest economy in the federation. However much the BC NDP try to lay a glove on her, they can’t. She’s got the biggest smile in Canadian politics, and for good reason. She’s winning. 

In my Alberta home, I don’t think Rachel Notley is doing nearly as badly as pundits and politicos claim. Her main opposition remains divided, she is impossible to dislike on a personal level, and there isn’t much (apart from an in-recession carbon tax) that you couldn’t picture her opponents also doing. Jason Kenney who?


  1. WestGuy says:

    Not sure I agree with you on the Alberta comment. I don’t think the PCs or WRP would have hiked corporate taxes 20 per cent or raised the minimum wage to $15 (and refused to budge on the implementation timeline despite the bad economy). I don’t think the PCs or Wildrose would have required farmers to go under WCB right away and workplace legislation in less than two years. I also don’t think either PCs or WRP would have sued itself and (essentially) the cities of Edmonton and Calgary for a power agreement clause that was right under its nose. The only reason she has the popularity she has is because the WRP and PCs are still fighting. They’ll probably do that until about a year before the next provincial election afterwhich one of the two will become the defacto conservative option.

    • Michael Bluth says:

      Well said WestGuy.

      Too many typos in my comment. Agreed on the minimum wage. Tied into the PPA expenses I think the rush to eliminate coal fired plants will backfire if the NDP stick to their guns on that one.

      I sure hope the provincial Liberals gain some life here.

      The way the budget deficit is heading Alberta could receive equalization payments and Quebec could be contributing by 2019. That is crazy.

  2. Michael Bluth says:

    I think you are misstating the antipathy for Nitley here in Alberta.

    Her opponents would not have raised the corporate tax rate. The corporate tax rate increase plus the carbon tax are why the oil patch is slowly recovering in Saskatchewan while Alberta is mired in its deepest recession in more than 30 years here.

    Her opponents would not have raised the corporate tax rates. Her opponents would not have ‘reviewed’ the power purchasing agreements. Her opponents would not have

    Her opponents would not have cancelled the privatization of laundry services at a cost of $200 million.

  3. Ron says:

    Jason Kenney. You know, the carpetbagger ?

  4. dave constable says:

    You’re right about what is going on here in BC. The economy does seem sound. I recently moved form Site C country, and lots of my old cronies are working hard against that project, but, now that the federal Libs seem for its continuance (giving out work permits late on a Friday) it looks like a done deal. Polls I looked at a couple of weeks ago give the BCLibs a pretty hefty margin.
    And, you are also right about the smile. She sure uses media well.
    They have another 9 months to unload special funding and programmes in key areas for the election campaign. All the shifty stuff from both the Campbell years and now Clark’s years seem to be unimportant to enough voters out here.

    …kind of depressing!

  5. dave constable says:

    Sometimes I think the present government in Alberta is the most closely monitored in the land. Perhaps part is the anomaly of NDP in Alberta; and partly, a female premier.
    We do watch every step taken by female premiers.

    • Michael Bluth says:

      Really it’s a gender thing? I’d say it’s an Internet/social media phenomenon.

      I’m pretty sure every step taken by every premier is watched. The actions of all premiers should be watched. Regardless of gender.

  6. e.a.f. says:

    about that great B.C. economy: B.C. has had the highest rate of child poverty in Canada for 14 out of the last 15 years and still going strong, the child poverty that is. Christy clawed back child support from children whose custodial parents were in receipt of disability. She continually told the public B.C. needed that $14 M a year. that is not a sound economy, when she has to “rob” child of their child support and force that child to live at 50% below the poverty line.

    B.C. has the lowest min. wage in Canada.

    We have the highest MSP in Canada, well we’re actually the only province who has these premiums.

    the disabled in B.C. live on $908 a month and after a raise of $55 dollars Christy decided to claw it back via bus passes, saying it was the equitable thing to do. So since 2007 the disabled have a $21 increase. Now they get to decide whether they want to take a bus to their appointments or eat.

    B.C. has the most corrupt government in Canada. My opinion is not alone, check out some of our bloggers to see how Christy deals with our tax dollars by giving them away to her corporate friends who give her all that money: Norm Farrell, In Sight.ca and then there is Laila Yuille, RossK with the Gazetter covers a lot of entertaining pay to play issues.

    B.C.’s MSM won’t report news if its negative regarding Christy.

    approx. 500K of us don’t have family doctors. There is insufficient monies to run the health care system, because as Christy says, we don’t have the money. Hell a few years ago they wanted to charge seniors in care homes $25 per month to use wheel chairs. Now does that sound like a province with a good economy?

    are schools are being closed or over crowded. Christy says we don’t have the money to build more. Come to think of it they’re trying to force the City of Vancouver’s school board to sell off property because Christy can’t afford to send them their own tax dollars to operate the schools.

    Christy spent a million on photo ops.
    her private jet bill is approx. half a mill.

    Ya, B.C.’s economy might look strong but if that housing market takes a dive, we are bust. It the Chinese foreign buyers which are keeping this province afloat. Housing prices are up and people use that to leverage more money to spend. One could ask is all that money legal or are some people laundering their money via B.C.’s housing market.

    Now as to a strong economy, not so much. Have a look at B.C.’s deficiet. its climbed approx. $40 BILLION since the queen of photo ops took over. The province takes in less money than it did when el gordo was premier and he took in less than the NDP.

    The B.C. Lieberals aren’t liberals. They’re more like old Socreds and Cons.

    B.C. Hydro is so deeply in debt we’re starting to look like Detroit North.

    the balancing of the yearly budget is done by forcing crown corps like ICBC to kick over money, than raise our insurance rates. el gordo had his fast ferries built in Germany and borrowed $750 M. extra and put it in general revenue to balance the budget in his day. Christy bleeds B.C. Hydro and ICBC.

    Christy takes in more from post secondary tutition than in corporate taxes.
    Christy takes in more from medical services premiums than she does in corporate taxes.
    Then Christy hands out hundreds of millions to her “friends/corporations/mining”

    if B.C.’s economy were doing so well, then why won’t people take the bridges with tolls and save themselves a load of time? Well they can’t afford them and both bridges continue to loose tens of millions each and every year.

    The economy of B.C. is not sound. its a lot of low paying service jobs.

    Construction is doing well and B.C. was doing well when a lot of the province was working in Alberta. Once the lay offs started in Alberta a lot of the “big money” people earned went down the toilet. You don’t think they’re living in their cars in Wal Mart parking lots in Kelowna for nothing do you.

    The way Christy and her cabal have structured the province’s debt, its all laid off for future years. The provincial debt is some where between $60 BILLION and a $100 BILLION. that is not a province which is doing well. if interest rates were to go up, B.C. would be bust.

    things can’t be that great, mining companies are asking for “relief” from their B.C. Hydro electricity bills. Christy gave it to them. so one or two might be billionaires, but they need the money, so well approx. 6,000 people had their electricity cut off last year, Christy’s pay to play friends not so much. they just have to pay the interest on their electricity bills.

    if the B.C. economy is doing so well why can’t the mining companies pay the government the BILLION they owe them. of course we could ask why Christy doesn’t try to collect it. could be one of them Teck Mining “donated” approx. $300K last year. their clean up bill on one mine would be $600K if things go side ways.

    Now of course there are those who love Christy and her smile but its gotten to the point, her antics are starting to effect more and more people. Just ask the 500K without family doctors, those who can’t get decent medical service.

    I wouldn’t trust those polls. We know what they said last time in B. C. and we saw what happened. I’d suggest anyone who ran any sort of half decent campaign in B. C. could defeat the photo op queen and her pay to play friends. yes, a premier who skimps the take at fund raisers to the tune of $50K a year, to make ends meet, but those kids and disabled, they’ll gave to get by on the $908 plus $21 per month in a city which has $3K a month rents on a decent apartment.

    it will be nice to see the back end of the photo op queen. If she is re elected I don’t know if the children of B.C. can survive another 4 years. We know the disabled certainly can’t.

  7. Sage says:

    If Trump becomes POTUS, the CPC will select Kevin O’Leary as their next leader. Count on it. Why? Because only Kevin is capable of negotiating a deal for Canada with Donald. Kevin and Donald are 2 peas in a pod; both are wheeler dealers.

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