Thank You Alberta Party!

When Greg Clark stepped down as the leader of the Alberta Party Ms Soapbox wondered whether the party had lost its mind.

When Rick Fraser and Stephen Mandel, two former Progressive Conservatives, entered the AP leadership race, Ms Soapbox wondered whether the party had been taken over by the Progressive Conservatives.

She soon realized such idle speculation was pointless.  Gone were the days of Boss Tweed and Tammany Hall when cigar-chomping party bosses pulled strings to deliver candidates acceptable to their well-heeled patrons.  And gone are the days when Albertans would vote “blue” because that’s what they’d done for the last 44 years.

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Greg Clark, MLA and former leader of the Alberta Party

Ms Soapbox isn’t saying the Alberta Party will lead Alberta to the promised land (she thinks Notley’s NDP are doing a fine job) however she wants to recognize the AP’s leadership candidates for pointing out that in this age of memes, Twitter spats, and an 8 second attention span, policies still matter.

Like the pre-Kenney politicians who went before them, the AP leadership candidates are putting policies in front of their membership because they respect their members and are willing to stick their necks out.  Most importantly, they’re not expecting their supporters to jump on the boo/hiss bandwagon just because they say so.

Assuming Ms Soapbox is right and it’s the thoughtful Albertans, not the boo/hissers who’ll determine the outcome of the 2019 election what should we be thinking about between now and then?

Here’s a preliminary list:

Divisive politics are dangerous:  Rick Fraser put it well when he said we need to return to civil discourse because the “old political playbook” won’t cut it anymore.  Albertans will not find solutions to complex problems if they’re at each others’ throats.  Politicians who insist that the path to victory is paved with divisive rhetoric are dangerous and don’t deserve our support.

Show us your policies or get off the air: Running on a no-policy platform is dangerous because hard-core supporters will fill in the blanks, leaving their leader in the peculiar position of trying to back away from a promise he never made or engaging in backroom machinations to deliver the results he secretly wants.

The UCP is already grappling with this problem.

Apparently, Jason Kenney said he’d cut spending by 1% to 2% not 20%.  That’s 10 times less than his base expects.  His base is confused and the rest of us don’t trust him.

Kenney also said his government would focus on economic issues, not social ones; however, when the NDP tabled Bill 24, an amendment to the School Act to ensure an LBGTQ student’s privacy rights were respected, Rick Fraser says the UCP caucus was whipped into voting against, notwithstanding Kenney’s comment that his MLAs were free to vote their conscience.

Are your policies better than the government’s policies, if so why?*

It’s not enough to unveil a policy, a politician needs to show us why his/her policy is better than the government’s position.

AP leadership candidate Rick Fraser has taken this to heart.  He says one way to ensure Alberta has the revenue it needs to provide the services people want is to implement a provincial sales tax.    He didn’t say he would implement a PST but he’s raised the topic for discussion (remember what I said about sticking your neck out).

The NDP’s solution to creating more revenue is to diversify the economy so the reduction in fossil fuel revenues won’t leave a gaping hole in the budget.  This is a long term solution that needs to be weighed against the risk of continued low oil prices and the immediate benefit a new PST would bring.

The UCP offer no solutions.  In fact, they’d like to bring back the 10% flat tax which will make the revenue gap at least $700 million worse (but it would make the top 10% of Albertans who make more than $128,145 very happy, so that’s a consideration).

What is your policy rationale and is it appropriate?

The best example of this issue is the debate over publicly funded “choice”.

The NDP believe publicly funded services should be publicly delivered and is moving services like long term care, lab services and laundry services in house.  The goal is to avoid the conflict that arises when a for-profit corporation that wants to increase costs (in order to increase profits) enters into a contract with a government trying to reduce costs so it can reduce its revenue requirements.

AP leadership candidate Stephen Mandel supports some level of privatization but hasn’t provided a helpful rationale.  He objects to the NDP’s decision to spend $325 million on new lab services saying it should have been outsourced to an Australian company. (The Sonic contract under consideration by the PC government was worth $3 billion, there may be more to Mandel’s rationale, but he has not yet explained it).

The UCP supports increased privatization of services like healthcare and education on the rationale of “choice” but has yet to explain why the public should fund the lion’s share of someone’s “choice” to move to a for-profit or religious service provider.

These are complex policy decisions that deserve thoughtful debate.

Thank you

The Alberta Party is a little party that punches well above its weight.  It will have achieved something remarkable if it manages to pull polarized Albertans out of their respective corners so they can engage in meaningful dialogue.

And for that the Alberta Party deserves our thanks, regardless of which political party we support.

*The discussion of UCP policies is based on media reports of the draft policy going to the UCP policy convention in May 2018.   

Posted in Alberta Health Care, Economy, Energy & Natural Resources, Politics and Government, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | 23 Comments

The Rule of Law in An Age of Fear

“He who puts security before liberty deserves neither.” –Dennis Edney Q.C. quoting Benjamin Franklin

Last week Dennis Edney Q.C. delivered the 2018 Milvain Lecture at the University of Calgary.  His topic was The Rule of Law in an Age of Fear and his defence of Omar Khadr.

Edney discussed the dangerous rise of populist politicians who exploit fear and bigotry to erode the rule of law and destabilize democracy in the hope of replacing it with an autocracy.  A frightened population will hasten the erosion of democracy by accepting drastic measures that curtail human rights and freedoms in the “interests of national security”.

dennis-edney

Dennis Edney Q.C.

Edney urged his audience to reject the decline of democracy by treating each other humanely, as individuals rather than faceless members of an amorphous religious group.

Which brings us to Edney’s 15-year battle to get Omar Khadr out of Guantanamo Bay.

The Khadr case

The Khadr case is a classic test of the rule of law.

Canadians who don’t understand or respect the rule of law think Khadr is a terrorist who deserves to rot in Guantanamo; Canadians who respect the rule of law see Khadr as a Canadian whose Charter rights were violated by the Canadian government.

Omar Khadr, a Canadian citizen, was 10 when his father took him to the Middle East.  Some news reports say Khadr’s father was a terrorist but Edney has never found any evidence to support this allegation.

Khadr was 15 when he was captured in a firefight at a suspected al-Qaida compound.  An American soldier was killed by a grenade, Khadr was seriously wounded.  Edney says Khadr was “the last man standing” after the battle and was taken to Guantanamo Bay where he was put into solitary confinement and interrogated every three or four days for years.

Edney describes Guantanamo as an evil lawless place where 1000 Muslim men and boys were kept in wire cages and freezing cells.  They had no access to lawyers, due process or judicial oversight.  The rule of law did not exist at Guantanamo.

And yet Canada did not object to its creation, remained silent when a Canadian was incarcerated there and repeatedly refused to ask the Americans to send Khadr back to Canada.

Dennis Edney Q.C.

Edney’s campaign to repatriate Khadr started the way all political activism starts, with letters to the federal government and requests for meetings with Edney’s MP, Anne McLellan.  His letters and meeting requests went unanswered.

Edney then asked the Khadr family for permission to bring an application on Khadr’s behalf.  That kicked off a round of court applications and visits to Guantanamo that spanned 15 years, drained Edney’s financial resources, and put a significant strain on his professional and personal life.

But he persisted, despite being saddled with American military lawyers who’d never run a trial or were too busy frolicking on the beach to show up on time for a hearing.  Edney didn’t protest when he was escorted to Khadr’s cell by 12 soldiers who were assigned to “protect” him.  He didn’t fuss when the US government diverted his flight to Florida and interrogated him for a day about his dealings with Khadr.  He knew if he caused trouble he’d never be allowed back into Guantanamo.

The Rule of Law

The turning point came in 2008 when Prime Minister Harper said he would not request Khadr’s repatriation.  He was satisfied with US assurances that Khadr was receiving “good treatment”.

Khadr was in solitary confinement, chained to the floor in a freezing cell and subjected to interrogation designed to make prisoners “more compliant.”  Edney filed an application arguing the Canadian government had violated Khadr’s Charter rights.

The application worked its way through the appeal process and landed in the Supreme Court of Canada which ruled that agents from CSIS and DFAIT (the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade) had indeed violated Khadr’s Charter rights by interrogating a youth without access to counsel who’d been subjected to sleep deprivation (also known as the “frequent flyer program”) knowing full well that Khadr’s statements would be shared with his American captors.

The SCC did not order Harper to request repatriation because it did not want to interfere with the Crown prerogative over foreign affairs.  Instead it issued a declaration stating the government had violated “the most basic Canadian standards about the treatment of detained youth suspects” and left the remedy up to the government’s discretion.

Eventually Edney negotiated a deal (which was supported by Hillary Clinton) whereby the US government would allow Khadr to return to Canada if he pleaded guilty to five war-crime charges and received an 8-year sentence.

Khadr returned to Canada in 2015 and was released on bail into Edney’s custody.

Based on the SCC’s ruling that the government had violated Khadr’s Charter rights, Khadr sued the federal government for $20 million.  The Liberal government settled the suit for $10.5 million and apologised to Khadr.

Courage

Edney says the biggest threat to democracy comes from within.  Citizens don’t understand the origin of their rights or are misinformed or too apathetic to demand their rights be protected.  They’re prepared to trade away their rights in return for the illusion of security.

Instead of giving way to fear and bigotry Edney called for humanity and respect.

He ended his speech with this:

 “Courage doesn’t always roar–sometimes it’s just a little voice at the end of the day that says, “I’ll try again tomorrow.”

Posted in Law, Lectures, Politics and Government, Terrorism | Tagged , , , | 34 Comments

Something is Seriously Wrong

How fitting.

The UCP will close 2017 with yet another bozo eruption.

Bozo eruptions were mildly entertaining in the past, but they’re occurring with increasing regularity and have taken on a distinctly anti-democratic tone.

Here are two recent examples.

NDP shills!

Last week the UCP attacked two well respected Alberta economists for daring to correct misstatements made by their leader Jason Kenney.

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Mr Kenney

They said Trevor Tombe, Associate Professor of Economics, University of Calgary, blew off the impact of the 50% increase in the carbon tax because he has a six-figure income (isn’t prosperity the UCP’s goal for all Albertans?) and enjoys guaranteed employment at a university (does he and if so why is it relevant?)

They accused Andrew Leach, Associate Professor, University of Alberta, of being pro NDP when he said Kenney was wrong in saying Alberta had suffered two years of out-migration.  Kenney clarified his comment by saying he didn’t include international migration in his numbers, he’d meant to say more “Canadians” left Alberta than moved in (why this distinction should matter to anyone but “old stock Canadians” is a mystery).

Not content to leave it alone, UCP MLA Richard Gotfried waded in demanding Leach prove he wasn’t an NDP shill by providing all his sources of income including his private tax information.  Leach directed Gotfried to his conflict of interest disclosure site which showed Leach had chaired the NDP’s Climate Leadership Panel and provided consulting services to the energy industry, held shares in some energy companies, and the Centre for Applied Business Research and Environment of which he is the director received financial support from a number of heavy hitters in the energy industry, namely Enbridge, Suncor, Capital Power, Altalink, ATCO and EPCOR.

Gotfried dismissed Leach’s responses as “Econo-speak” and said he’d check with his “research/FOIP Team” to determine…what exactly, whether Leach had lied on his conflict of interest disclosure by failing to a secret source of income from the NDP?

Ad hominin attacks on academics and others because they contradict Jason Kenney’s statements with facts have become commonplace in Alberta politics, however raising the spectre of a FOIP search to demonstrate a non-partisan academic is biased is an abuse of process and a new low even for the UCP.

Sadly, this isn’t an isolated incident.  UCP MLAs have attacked the foundations of democracy in the Legislature as well.

One person, one vote?

The UCP were incensed by Bill 33, the Electoral Divisions Act, which reduced the rural ridings by 3 and increased the urban ridings by the same number to reflect the decline in rural populations and the increase in urban populations.

A couple of NDP MLAs did not support these changes either, arguing that reducing the number of rural ridings would make it more difficult for rural MLAs to meet with their constituents.

While some UCP MLAs made the same argument, three–Mr. Cyr, Mr Hansen and Mr Gotfried–went off the deep end with an argument that was profoundly undemocratic.

Scott Cyr started the ball rolling by misconstruing the Supreme Court of Canada’s ruling on the meaning of “effective representation” to mean that “one person to one vote is just not possible”.

Dave Hanson picked up the thread arguing the redrawn boundaries failed to give rural Alberta the respect it deserves as being the economic driver of Alberta.

Richard Gotfried brought the argument home by arguing rural Albertans create Alberta’s wealth, those who work “in the glass towers of Calgary” merely manage it, hence rural Alberta deserves disproportionately higher representation.*

In other words, the wealth creators, whoever they may be, deserve the right to exercise greater political influence than the rest of us.  

Not to belabour the point, but has the UCP lost its collective mind?

Rebirth

Given Mr Kenney’s promise to crack down on bozo eruptions it is deeply troubling he did nothing to rein in the UCP’s ad hominem attacks on Mr Tombe and Mr Leach and his MLA’s attacks on the fundamental democratic principle of one person, one vote.

But Mr Kenney is on a mission, he doesn’t have time for such petty issues.

When asked about the merger of the Progressive Conservatives and the Wildrose Party, Kenney said, “I just realized that you cannot have a viable national conservative movement if Alberta becomes a socialist democratic province….we need Alberta back as the beating heart of free enterprise and the conservative movement in Canada.”

Think about that for a moment.

A viable national conservative movement?  We have a viable national conservative movement.  It’s called the Conservative Party of Canada and it’s presently sitting in the Opposition benches in Ottawa.  In a democracy no one rules forever.

We need Alberta to be the beating heart of free enterprise and the conservative movement?  Why? What’s wrong with Saskatchewan?

The Saskatchewan Party was created in 1997.  It formed government in 2007 and implemented the largest debt reduction, single year income tax reductions and property tax reductions in Saskatchewan’s history.  It was re-elected with successively larger majorities in 2011 and 2016, winning 51 out of 61 seats in 2016.  Provincial conservatism is alive and well, it just happens to be living next door.

If Mr Kenney thinks the Conservative Party of Canada doesn’t represent a viable national conservative movement and the Saskatchewan Party doesn’t represent a viable provincial conservative movement, one shudders to think what he has in store for Alberta if he’s elected in 2019.

*Alberta Hansard, Dec 13, 2017 pp 2565, 2566, 2572 

Posted in Politics and Government, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 47 Comments

Merry Christmas!

While Ms Soapbox was trying to get the dog to sit still for his annual Ziggy under the Christmas Tree photo Mr Kenney was busy telling The Sun how he was going to prevent bozo eruptions in the UCP…and had a full-blown bozo eruption.

It started slowly.

Mr Kenney said he’d prevent bozo eruptions by carefully vetting potential UCP candidates to uncover any nastiness.

He set down some rules about what they could say and what they couldn’t say–no more comments comparing Alberta politics with horrible historical events, no more stupid jokes because they come out sounding all wrong, no more hateful statements that denigrate an entire group of people, and no more name calling and recriminations against other members of the conservative family (even if they crossed the floor under Danielle Smith’s reign and joined the Prentice conservatives) because “our new party should have a generosity of spirit towards people.”

He assured everyone that his rules were not a restriction on freedom of speech or an effort to be politically correct (he’s against political correctness).

merry_christmas1

He was crystal clear that he, not his political opponents, would decide what constitutes hateful language or acts and what doesn’t.  He illustrated his point with a helpful Christmas example:  “The problem is people on the left think saying Merry Christmas is hateful.  Those voices of crazed political correctness will not govern what is allowed.”

Wait, what?  

Not surprisingly, “the people on the left” and their non-lefty friends took to social media to tell Mr Kenney that they’ve never said saying Merry Christmas is hateful, in fact they say Merry Christmas all the time.

They swamped Mr Kenney with Merry Christmas tweets.  They pointed out the hypocrisy of saying the  UCP should have “a generosity of spirit” towards people in the conservative family while at the same time lauding Stephen Harper for not being “a squishy Joe Clark Tory”, and the mendacity of telling future MLAs not to denigrate an entire group of people while at the same time calling “the people on the left” the “voices of crazed political correctness”.

It soon dawned on Mr Kenney that he’d had a bozo eruption.  He moved to damage control mode with the explanation that he was only joking.

Oh, well that makes it so much better.  Mr Kenney didn’t violate the “don’t denigrate an entire group of people” rule, he violated the “no more stupid jokes” rule.

In actuality, Mr Kenney violated the “don’t be Donald Trump” rule.  He dog-whistled his supporters, telling them they were hapless victims of Leftist Grinches who stole their right to say Merry Christmas to protect the delicate feelings of, well, someone else, and that he, Mr Kenney, feels their pain and will one day stand on a podium like Mr Trump proclaiming it’s okay to say Merry Christmas again.

This is ridiculous and deserves no further comment.

So … Ms Soapbox would like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

We’ll close with a photo of Ziggy under the Christmas tree.  Ziggy, like the rest of us, is a little worse for wear.  He’s nine and lost an eye to glaucoma last summer but loves Christmas as much as we do.

ziggy christmas

Happy Holidays everyone.  Talk to you in the New Year!!!!

Posted in Celebrations, Politics and Government | Tagged , , | 50 Comments

Jason Kenney’s “Big” Win

Jason Kenney and the media describe Kenney’s win in the Calgary-Lougheed byelection with 71.5% of the votes as a “landslide” and the final tick in the box before Kenney cruises through the 2019 general election and sends Rachel Notley and the NDP packing.

Maybe…maybe not. 

Consider the facts.

The candidates

Kenney has been on the Alberta political stage as a federal MP since 1997.  Dr Phillip van der Merwe, the NDP candidate, showed up last Wednesday (okay, not last Wednesday, five Wednesdays ago).

Kenney, with the support of Stephen Harper, Rona Ambrose and other Conservative heavy hitters spent the last 18 months campaigning for the leadership of the Progressive Conservatives, the merger of the Progressive Conservative and Wildrose parties, and finally a seat in the Alberta Legislature after the Calgary-Lougheed MLA Dave Rodney graciously fell on his sword and resigned.   The NDP candidate (with the support of the Premier and a few cabinet ministers) stepped away from his busy medical practice and campaigned for a month.

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Mr Kenney’s “big” win

The outcome

Voter turnout was surprisingly low considering Kenney’s high profile and the significance of this byelection–it was the first time voters could show their support for the PC/WR merger and the UCP’s choice of Kenney as its leader.

They were indifferent.

In the nine byelections held in Calgary since 1979 voter turnout ranged from 28% to 39.1%.  Byelections in jurisdictions outside of Calgary have seen voter turnout as high as 69.1%.  Notwithstanding Kenney’s razzle dazzle campaign, voter turnout remained stuck at the low end of that range, around 30%.  This is a shade higher than the 29% turnout for the unknown but successful PC candidate, Prab Gill, in the Calgary-Greenway byelection in 2016 and significantly lower than the 38.2% turnout for the unknown but successful WR candidate, Prasad Panda, in the Calgary-Foothills byelection in 2015.

Given Kenney’s reputation in federal and provincial politics and his avowed mission to revitalize the conservative movement at the federal and provincial levels it’s shocking that a candidate with so much name recognition and conservative support failed to drum up significant voter turnout.

Kenney used the byelection as a prequel to his run for premier in 2019 but his results show him lagging behind the combined PC/WR support of 2015.  Kenney garnered 7,760 votes.  That’s 2,960 votes less than the combined PC/WR vote count (10,720) in the 2015 election and a 28% drop in support

NDP support in the Calgary-Lougheed byelection dropped 66% from 5,437 in 2015 to 1,822 last week.  This reflects the premise that voters in this conservative stronghold didn’t vote for the NDP but against the PCs in 2015.

One would have expected the disgruntled voters who rejected the PCs in 2015 to swing their support back to the shiny new PC/WR party under its shiny new leader Jason Kenney.  They failed to do so.

Kenney may crow about his electoral success in Calgary-Lougheed but his lackluster performance in this diehard conservative riding is nothing to write home about.

Posted in Politics and Government | Tagged , , , | 39 Comments

When They Go Low: the Kenney by-election debate

On Sunday afternoon Mr and Ms Soapbox were jammed into an overheated community hall listening to five politicians explain why they were the best choice to represent the good citizens of Calgary-Lougheed in the by-election triggered when Dave Rodney stepped down to give UCP leader Jason Kenney a seat in the Legislature.

The media characterized the debate among Mr Kenney, Dr Philip van der Merwe (Dr Phil, NDP), Romy Tittel (Green Party), Wayne Leslie (Independent, Alberta Advantage Party) and David Khan (Liberal) as “boisterous”.

That’s wrong.  The event wasn’t “boisterous”, it wasn’t even a “debate”, it was a Kenney “rally” intent on heckling and jeering the NDP candidate to the point where we couldn’t hear him speak over the din.

kenney debate photo

This is deeply disturbing.  The purpose of political debates is to give candidates a chance to explain their policies, but perhaps heckling is all we can expect from Mr Kenney who prides himself on having no policies whatsoever.

What they said

Kenney blamed the NDP for ruining the economy with “job-killing” tax increases.  He promised to fix the economy by killing the carbon tax (which he said did nothing for pipeline approvals), renewing the Alberta Advantage, reigniting the economy and creating new jobs.  We have no idea how he will achieve this because he provided no details.

Dr Phil said the NDP’s policies supported Albertans through the recession and pushed Alberta ahead of the rest of the country in GDP growth.  He outlined the benefits of the climate leadership plan and said Kenney’s plan to cut spending by 20% would gut education and healthcare.

Khan said the Liberals were the moderate alternative to the extreme left (NDP) and extreme right (UCP) and promised “comprehensive tax reform” to balance the budget (is this code for a sales tax?)

Tittel reaffirmed the Green party’s support for proportional representation and suggested Alberta could turn its attention to “intellectual extraction” whereby its young, well educated work force would focus on artificial intelligence and science and technology to tackle environmental problems at home and abroad.

Leslie said he represented the grassroots and urged the implementation of recall legislation to hold MLAs accountable to their constituents.

Kenney and the hecklers  

Kenney and his hecklers focused all their attention on Dr Phil.  He took Dr Phil to task over a number of comments:

  • Kenny denied he ever said the UCP would cut spending by 20%. He promised to balance the budget by 2022 by holding spending to zero or perhaps cutting it by one or two percent.  Kenney is on record saying he’d exercise “a period of sustained restraint in spending…to get [Alberta] down to more or less [BC’s] per capita spending”…“BC spends about 20 per cent less than Alberta per capita.”  Lord only knows whether his 2% maximum spending cuts are doable given his refusal to put out a shadow budget.
  • Kenney said climate change is real, it’s caused by man, and greenhouse gases need to be reduced, but he won’t impose economic costs on Alberta industries unless other jurisdictions do so first. If this is true Kenney is a hypocrite because he’s allowing his MLAs, particularly Don MacIntyre, Drew Barnes, and Rick Strankman, to express contrary views.
  • He dismissed the NDP claim that he oversaw six deficit budgets while in Harper’s government by blaming it on the recession but rejected the NDP’s position that they are running a deficit budget because of the recession caused by slumping oil prices and the legacy of the PC’s austerity plan.
  • He rejected the NDP’s claim that the carbon tax is funding Calgary’s Green Line with the bizarre argument that he provided billions for the Green Line when he was in the federal government and didn’t need a carbon tax to do it. The federal government’s promise to deliver funding in 2015 does not diminish the fact that Notley delivered provincial funding from carbon tax revenues in 2017.  These are two separate buckets of funding.
  • He said Dr Phil called him an extremist and said 70% of the voters elected Kenney every time he ran for office, therefore Dr Phil must be calling 70% of the voters extremists. This is a perfect example of how Kenney riles up his supporters with lies.  Dr Phil said Kenney’s spending cuts were extreme, not that Kenney was an extremist.  Also, Kenney did not get 70% of the votes every time he ran for office: in 1997 he got 55%, in 2000 he got 63% and in 2015 he got 67%.

The erosion of democracy

Candidates debates are a fundamental part of the democratic process, but only when the candidates respect the rules.    

The debate organizers made numerous attempts to stop the heckling and booing but failed.  Instead of stepping in to quiet the hecklers, Kenney let his supporters run roughshod over the process.

The heckling bordered on intimidation and came to a head when a UCP supporter blocked NDP MLA Sandra Jansen twice as she moved about the hall.  The heckler posted a video of his actions on social media where it was lauded by others who called Ms Jansen vile names.

And no, Ms Soapbox isn’t being overly sensitive.  In the last few weeks Kenney and the UCP have taken civil discourse to a new Trump-like low.  They’ve said socialists eat dogs, marijuana leads to communism and Pinochet’s reign of terror was “a success story”.

The Pinochet example is particularly egregious given the UCP’s attempt to confuse the public by posting a draft version of Hansard which did not include UCP MLA Strankman’s “success story” comment as evidence that Strankman did not say what the NDP said he said.  Surely after all his years in Harper’s cabinet, Kenney knows the draft version of Hansard does not become the official transcript of what was said in the House until it’s been checked against the video and audio recordings.  (The veracity of the official version of Hansard is why lawyers use it as evidence of Parliament’s intention when the meaning of a particular piece of legislation is in dispute).

When they go low…

Kenney says he’s going to correct the record and tell the truth when the NDP lie about UCP policies.

Given the performance of the UCP leader, his MLAs, and his supporters over the last few months I say we do this for ourselves…

…and when they go low, we get the facts and hold Mr Kenney, his MLAs and his supporters accountable for their misrepresentations and lies.

Posted in Alberta Health Care, Economy, Education, Energy & Natural Resources, Politics and Government, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 53 Comments

Stay tuned…

Ms Soapbox spent the afternoon in an overheated community hall listening to Jason Kenney (UCP), Dr Philip van der Merwe (NDP), Romy Titte (Green Party), Wayne Leslie (Independent), and David Khan (Liberal) tell us why they were the best candidate to represent the good citizens of Calgary-Lougheed in the upcoming by-election.

She’s exhausted.

Stay tuned for details tomorrow.

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments