The Day We Demonstrated Outside the UCP AGM

“Public services are under attack.  What do we do? Stand up, fight back!” – Protest cheer

Ms Soapbox, her husband and her good friend from Edmonton joined the public school teachers, healthcare workers, and deeply concerned Albertans at the huge rally outside the Westin Hotel where the UCP were holding their AGM.    

Over 1000 people showed up on a bitterly cold Saturday to protest the UCP’s budget cuts and loss of public sector jobs. 

While the UCP delegates debated the wording of various policy proposals*—should parents be the major stakeholder in a child’s education (yes), should Alberta uphold the principles of the Canada Health Act (no)—the protesters listened to speakers, shared their stories, and marched around the hotel taking care not to set foot on hotel property because heaven forbid they got too close to the UCP members gathered inside.

Jason Kenney blew off the demonstration, saying if people weren’t protesting, he wasn’t doing his job properly.  

Part of the huge crowd that showed up on a freezing cold Saturday

This was a dangerous mistake on his part because Albertans will not stand by while he bulldozes public services in the name of free market conservatism.

Every protester represents at least five like-minded Albertans who were unable to attend the rally.   These people will make their UCP MLAs’ lives a misery as the impact of these cuts are felt in their individual ridings. 

And these MLAs (who Mr Kenney described as the most talented and competent and impressive caucus and cabinet he’d ever had the honour of serving with) will have nothing to say in defence of Mr Kenney’s Grand Plan. 

Why?  Because Mr Kenney offered nothing to alleviate the suffering and turmoil that will result from his austerity budget.   In his AGM speech Mr Kenney said:  

  • Let’s put the budget cuts into perspective.  It’s just a “modest 2.8% reduction” in operating costs over 4 years.  Mel McMillan, professor emeritus, Dept of Economics U of A says the real cut is 14.7% when you factor in inflation and population growth.   
  • The UCP is keeping its promise to protect healthcare and education; the healthcare budget is increasing and the education budget is flat.  How does he explain the loss of 500 FTE nursing jobs (this equates to 750 nurses), 1000 HSAA healthcare workers jobs, 300 public school teaching jobs in Calgary alone, 200 U of C jobs, and between 4,900 to 5,900 AUPE full time jobs lost by 2023
  • Mr Kenney will deploy every legal, economic and constitutional tool at his disposal to get a fair deal from Canada.  Fine, but any plan to wring more money out of the feds that involves amending the constitution requires the support of other provinces and any plan involving litigation triggers the judicial process.  Both will take years and are no help to an unemployed Albertan today.
  • The Fair Deal Panel will come up with solutions.  It’s considering opting out of federal programs and replacing federal services with Alberta’s own tax collection services, RCMP, and APP.  Not only does this duplicate existing federal services and increase our costs, it will take years to accomplish, once again doing nothing for the unemployed Albertan banging on his MLA’s door.
  • In 1905 when Alberta became a province someone produced a document entitled “The Province and People of Destiny.”  It said Alberta “is destined to become the brightest gem in great empire that encircles the world.”  A land of opportunity for “every kind of effort and enterprise.”  Mr Kenney said we’ll get through this because “we are and always will be that province and people of destiny.”  Flowery words, but of no use whatsoever to an unemployed oil worker and his unemployed partner, a nurse, and their children who’ve lost their teachers and are struggling to learn in overcrowded classrooms. 

When the UCP MLAs looked out the window and saw hundreds and hundreds of us streaming by they should have felt a shiver run down their spines because their leader has given them an impossible task: defend the austerity budget (which further increased unemployment by attacking the public sector) with a pipedream that depends on bullying the federal government and other provinces into bailing Alberta out until the oil boom returns.  And if that doesn’t cut it the MLAs can fall back on Mr Kenney’s platitude that Albertans are people of destiny who can get through this because Mr Kenney says they can.  

Given a choice between Jason Kenney’s UCP who imposed a brutal austerity budget and thinks it can fix the economy by bluffing the feds and provinces into bailing it out, and Rachel Notley’s NDP who implemented the sustainable economic policies and caring social programs we need to carry us into the future, who do you think we’ll vote for in 2023? 

*With thanks to @kieranleavitt and @MBellefontaine who provided live Tweet coverage of the UCP AGM

This entry was posted in Economy, Energy & Natural Resources, Environment, Politics and Government, Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

47 Responses to The Day We Demonstrated Outside the UCP AGM

  1. Jim McPhail says:

    Susan, I look forward to all your posts as expressing the voiced of reason in this land of nasty, neoliberals whose playbook is merely starting to take effect. Much more to come!
    Thank you!

  2. Jerrymacgp says:

    He’s channeling King Ralph with all of this — except he doesn’t have one-tenth of Ralph’s personality — and those of us le enough to remember know how well that worked out. The thousands of health care professionals we lost in the mid-90s after seeing their wages rolled back & their jobs eliminated, at a time when the population was growing & Albertans were breeding like rabbits, led to skyrocketing wait lists for almost every health service you can imagine, & a very costly recruitment campaign to try & coax all those nurses, allied health professionals & physicians back to Alberta during the last half of the decade & into the early 2000s. Meanwhile, years of neglect of basic upkeep led to crumbling physical infrastructure in our health care & education systems, and a costly building programme during the boom years — priming the pump costs far more when it’s already running at top speed — to accommodate ever-increasing demand for services in ever-deteriorating facilities.

    How long will this pendulum swing keep knocking us flat on our backs again before it oscillates back to “investment” again, and how much will it cost to fix the damage done this time?

    If it weren’t so infuriating, it’d be hilarious.

    • Jerrymacgp says:

      Typo: That was supposed to read “those of us old enough to remember” …

    • Jerrymacgp: Well said. That’s why Kenney’s assertion so misleading, In his speech he said “the numbers don’t lie”, this is a “modest” 2.8% cut but as Prof McMillan points out the real number is 14.7% so Kenney is either dense or lying. Kenney also justified his cuts by saying Klein cut 20% and Jean Chretien cut 6% over 2 years, this is a childish justification along the lines of “yeah well I may be bad, but they’re worse.” In essence he’s saying he’s the best of a bad lot. The best of a bad lot is not a leader anyone should trust.

  3. Jill says:

    It’s getting harder to read about the cuts. I can’t understand the rationale.
    Thanks as ever for your excellent blog, Susan. I was looking forward to it and you never disappoint.

    • Dwayne says:

      Jill: Austerity does not save money. Because, when economic conditions improve, the effects of the cuts have to be remedied, and that costs money, when that money could be earmarked for a rainy day. When people get laid off, they have no money to spend on themselves and their families. They can’t go see a movie, go out to a restaurant, or go travel. Less money goes into the economy, making matters worse for everyone. Since Jason Kenney has never had an actual job in his life, I doubt that he can comprehend what struggles a working person faces. First, with his two tiered minimum wage system, and with his shameful treatment of public sector employees. Then, with his illogical corporate tax cuts. He hijacked teacher’s pensions, without their consent, and put their pensions in a risky fund, that has a far less greater rate of return. This is just disgusting in every way possible. There will never be triple digit oil prices, thanks to the Middle East (Saudi Arabia, specifically), and the U.S.A dictating what oil prices should be. So, how does Jason Kenney think he’ll make Alberta’s financial picture brighter, with his very ill thought out policies?

      • Dwayne says:

        *what they think oil prices should be*

      • Lorraine Stephenson says:

        So true…how can you bring about prosperity by making everyone poor? Sad part is that he seems to be doing it strictly to be vindictive…..destroying everything that Rachel Notley worked so hard to build. It’s so scary!

      • You’re right Lorraine. Kenney’s election campaign was founded on characterizing Rachel Notley and Justin Trudeau as monsters who victimized Albertans. Right after he got elected he started tearing down everything she implemented. But once he’s finished erasing Notley’s legacy he’ll have no where to turn. He can berate Trudeau all he wants but as the last election proved Trudeau doesn’t need Alberta to win a majority. All he needs is Quebec and Ontario. He’s already got Ontario, now he has to get Quebec back in the fold and he’s got another majority government. I heard Zain Velji speak today. He said there’s a reason why Trudeau put 12 Quebec MPs into his cabinet.
        Bottom line for Kenney: he won’t get much help from Trudeau, but he’ll go a long way in wrecking Alberta, then he’ll be cooked.

    • Thanks Jill. Kenney has bitten off more than he can chew with this austerity budget. Even UCP supporters are unhappy about their kids’ teachers getting fired and nurses being laid off.
      The NDP message that Kenney is using these job cuts to offset his $4.7B corporate tax cut is hitting home. Especially given the industry’s reaction which was to pocket the savings and not invest a dime of it in the energy sector. Heck, if Cenovus, Suncor, Encana and Husky won’t invest in the energy sector why should we?
      In his speech Kenney said the NDP left the province $6B worse off than they said they did (the second quarter results that came out right after the NDP left office confirms the NDP’s deficit number, not Kenney’s deficit number). The fact Kenney said this tells me he’s coming under fire for these cuts in the face of his $4.7B gift to the corporations and he’s trying to deflect blame for the $4.7B hole in the budget back on to the NDP. It’s bizarre thinking but hey, it’s the UCP.

  4. Dwayne says:

    Susan: Thanks for another great blog. The UCP’s policies mirror the things we saw with the Alberta PCs, starting when Peter Lougheed was not the premier. These Ralph Klein style cuts will not help Alberta one iota. I recall Don Getty stating he was responsible for starting Alberta’s austerity. I also recall Ralph Klein worsening it. We did not recover from these draconian and very shortsighted policies. The Alberta PCs were not fiscally responsible, ever since Peter Lougheed was not the premier. Assuming oil booms are infinite, and doing scandal after scandal, which would make other governments blush, was never beneficial. What are the UCP doing? Identical things. Their corporate tax cuts have not created a single job anywhere in Alberta. Look at the layoffs that Husky Oil just did. Halloween is supposed to be once a year. The nightmares with the UCP are all year round, and beyond. It’s worse than anything Wes Craven could ever conjure up in his horror movies. We have the ability to write sentences, and do math skills, and read things, because a teacher taught us these skills. We, and our loved ones were made to get better because of medical staff. Devaluing these people is a major mistake. Jason Kenney did say at one point that no Ralph Klein type cuts were coming. How many election promises did Jason Kenney break? I could count the ways, but the one example I gave was good enough. I have heard people who are livid with Jason Kenney, and I don’t blame them. I also see people who think he’s the greatest thing since sliced bread, or the invention of the electric light bulb. Are they ever delusional. The sad thing is that Jason Kenney has made it so that he will be in here for the long term. I don’t know if that is not the case, I think that it is based on what I’ve seen him do.

    • Dwayne, I agree with you 100%. Even Kenney admits that everything he’s doing will not create more jobs. After the usual blather that the NDP tax hikes hurt “job creators” and pushed Alberta into a recession he said our ability to get back to work, to get good jobs, “will require a fair deal for Alberta” from the rest of Canada. In other words what he’s really doing is trying to squeeze enough money out of the feds to tide Alberta over until the oil boom comes back. This is insanity, he’s begging for payouts from the feds instead of implementing policies that will create a sustainable economy for our future.
      I note that not one premier at the premiers’ conference backed Kenney’s call to amend the equalization formula. And why would they? He can scream and yell until the cows come home but there’s no way he’ll convince a “have-not” province to accept less so a “have” province can get more.
      He’s finally figured that out, that’s why he’s calling the amendments he wants to the fiscal stabilization program “an equalization rebate”. Changing the fiscal stabilization program will benefit all the provinces so they’ll support it, but calling it “an equalization rebate” is misleading because it’s not a rebate and has nothing to do with the equalization formula. However that’s Kenney for you, changing the meaning of words so he can pretend he won on his equalization amendment argument when in fact the other provinces shut him down.

  5. CallmeHal2000 says:

    I have picked this word carefully: brute; brute with a smirk as he wipes out people’s livelihoods, while promising to make things much worse. Something is rotten in the state of Alberta.

    • GoinFawr says:

      “brute” is pretty descriptive CmH2K, but I think it gives the reprehensible Mr.Kenney too much credit, as it implies he personally has some sort of personal ‘strength’ that he hasn’t appropriated from the electorate

      “Skeevy” is the word that comes to mind whenever I see that smarmy mug laugh through its teeth at those who actually work for a living.

    • CallmeHall2000: As Kenney’s term unfolds I suspect many Albertans will see him for what he is, the man who promised Albertans they would have more money in their pockets but who made them poorer than they ever dreamed possible. It’s coming at us from all sides, he promised to hold the line or increase the healthcare and education budgets and then reduced them by failing to account for population growth and inflation, he hiked personal income taxes by deindexing exemptions, he deindexed AISH, he lifted the cap on car insurance and electricity and school fees, and he down-loaded costs on to the municipalities thereby driving up our municipal taxes. And that’s just a partial list. As Kenney said at the AGM “You ain’t seen nothing yet, we’re just getting started.”
      Well, guess what Mr Kenney, so are we!
      GoinFawr: I had to look up “skeevy”. It means unpleasant, squalid, distasteful. Very fitting word.

  6. Michael Priaro says:

    I don’t like much of Jason Kenney’s too-far right politics. I don’t like the sleazy, possibly illegal, manner in which he obtained the UCP leadership.
    In his favour, he has made a show of standing up for Alberta on the national scene, but that seems to have rapidly faded in favour of cutting essential services and creating study committees and panels. So far, Kenney’s fight for Alberta is just talk.
    Rachel Notley’s biggest mistake was to ally herself with Justin Trudeau and not stand up and fight for Alberta against Bill C-48, Bill C-69, equalization, and provincial opposition to pipelines. Peter Lougheed would have fought against all of that with all he had.
    Instead we have Trudeau II trying to ru(i)n the country from a minority position, with Andrew Milquetoast in opposition, and Klein II running Alberta.

    • GoinFawr says:

      “Instead we have Trudeau II trying to ru(i)n the country from a minority position, with Andrew Milquetoast in opposition, and Klein II running Alberta”

      Correct me if I am wrong Mike, but in light of this I am supposing you and yours ought to have cast your ballots wholly differently then, all year ’round, eh?

      Ms. Notley ‘allied’ herself with the feds just enough to get a pipeline approved; following which she made quite ‘a show of standing up for Alberta’ (just ask the BC NDP)…as well as accomplishing a litany of other positive things that were minimized, misrepresented, or outright ignored by those outlining her mandate, for whatever reason.

      “Peter Lougheed would have fought against all of that with all he had.”

      If you say so, though I would argue Ms.Notley did her best, despite your assertion to the contrary. Of course, there is no pleasing some people:
      https://globalnews.ca/news/5365808/tanker-ban-bill-questions/

      • GoinFawr says:

        Note: you will have to scroll down to the veeeery bottom of that page to find the buried statement (go figure) made by the former Alberta premier regarding BillC-48
        It’s like it never even happened, right Mike?

    • Michael Priaro: I’m with GoinFawr on this one.

  7. J.E. Molnar says:

    Ms Soapbox I’m ready to join you. I’m dusting off my “Hey-Hey, Ho-Ho Klein’s (Kenney’s) Gotta Go” picket sign.

    It appears as though a general strike in the public sector may soon be warranted. Jason Kenney’s callous disregard for health care, education and public services appears to be a clarion call for public sector unions to unite in solidarity and stand up to this autocratic political bully.

    Clearly, Mr. Kenney’s vision for Alberta is a tsunami of social upheaval and destruction—reminiscent of Ralph Klein’s heavy-handed, ham-fisted attack on our public services and the people who provide them. It’s not Ralph Klein 2.0 that Albertans are looking for. Surely UCP MLAs can figure that much out.

    • J.E. while I worry about the public backlash to a general strike, I think it could be effective if it went ahead in short bursts, the unions flexing their muscle as it were.
      I agree with your point that Albertans are not looking for Ralph Klein 2.0, the reaction of UCP supporters to Kenney’s austerity budget supports this conclusion. Also their patience will run out soon. They’ll get tired of Kenney trying to blame the NDP and Trudeau for the failure of Kenney’s economic policies.
      Eventually they’ll recognize that Kenney was the one who said a $4.7B tax cut for corporations would create jobs, it didn’t. He’s the one who said a referendum on equalization would bring Trudeau to the table, it won’t because the rest of the provinces won’t support him. He’s the one who said the elimination of the carbon tax would make everyone richer, it didn’t because he’s replaced the carbon tax (which was rebated to 2/3 of the population) with hidden taxes and additional costs on everything from car insurance to electricity.
      He has no plan for the economy, he’s making the same mistake the PCs did before him, he’s betting the oil boom will come back. When it doesn’t and Alberta is in an even deeper hole than it is now with crappier education and healthcare, there will be hell to pay.

  8. mikegklein says:

    Greta has taught us that ongoing, consistent regular protest demonstrations have a powerful effect. Let this be the first one of 200 regular weekly demonstrations. Just move them from place to place to be as inclusive as possible.

    • Mikegklein: excellent point. Even if we didn’t hold a demonstration every week–a big one once a month would send a powerful message–we should show up in full force for all the Resistance events that are being held across the province. Also we should attend the UCP’s Fair Deal Panel meetings to show that no all Albertans believe we should isolate ourselves behind a firewall.
      Oh and let’s not forget inundating our UCP MLAs with letters and phone calls expressing our deep disappointment and concern with their asinine policies.
      If there was ever a time to be vocal, it’s now.

      • Bob Raynard says:

        I wonder how possible it is to attend the Fair Deal (sic) meetings. Yesterday I read about the one being held in Edmonton, and clicked on the link to attend it. The meeting was held in some insignificant little building, and it was sold out. It made me wonder if UPC supporters were given access to the website before it became available to the general public, to stack the meeting.

      • I’ve been watching the government website on this. It had a button to register but only for the Edmonton townhall, none of the others. The Calgary townhall will take place on Dec 10, that’s less than 4 business days from now, but they haven’t provided a button to click to register. Either that’s very poor planning or, as you said, they’re not interested in hearing from everyone. Makes you wonder doesn’t it. https://www.alberta.ca/fair-deal-panel.aspx

      • Carlos Beca says:

        Well this is just typical Jason Kenney tactics. He will later blame someone else. Maybe someone is hacking the site. Maybe the Kamikaze guy.
        This man is not even worth the time we spend talking about him. Somehow we seem paralyzed in the face of these dishonest events that seem to be part of his character.
        42% of Albertans love it and that is a major obstacle. I am not surprised. One thing is for real – we either counter these events or we will sink into it like a black hole.
        During Ralph Klein years, he insulted people, he used and abused government planes and helicopters, he was drunk in public, he openly despised the democratic process and he even had a minister that was a wife beater and nothing, absolutely nothing affected his support from Albertans. I am talking support in the 70% or more, only because money was flowing everywhere from the highest gas and oil prices ever. In other words – money talks

      • Carlos, they fixed the government website so we can now register for any of the panel meetings. But here’s the thing, yesterday I got an email from Project Confederation giving me a link to register through Eventbright, not the government website. The email was signed by its executive director, Josh Andrus. Mr Andrus has held leadership positions in the Wildrose party, the Centre for the Alberta taxpayer and so on.

  9. GoinFawr says:

    Nothing says ‘prosperity!’ like your gov’t’s credit rate being slashed: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgary/moody-s-alberta-credit-rating-1.5383294

    Oh Jason, those ratings agencies are such a ‘moody’ bunch, aren’t they?

    • Dwayne says:

      GoinFawr Who is getting the blame for this, as usual? The NDP. So disgusting and shameful.

      • Carlos Beca says:

        Dwayne I understand your point but the NDP is not blameless either. Rachel Notley clearly ignored an issue that is crucial to any province or country – the deficit. Even if she had implemented a small sale tax she would have been better off. Ignoring a deficit of 10 billion dollars in a province of 3.5 million people is a big mistake. She also had an opportunity of supporting real democratic changes in this province and again not much happened. The only change was the party donations but it is now going to be reversed.
        Also she should have invested very heavily in Renewal Resources, way heavier than she did which would put us in an accelerated transition process. She chose to fight for oil. It is clear that Alberta has quite good geo-thermal resources and that we have thousands of oil wells that can now be reused but we again did not even touch that file. The problem is that Rachel Notley is a social democrat and they are fully embedded in the neo-liberal mind set. Difficult to let it go in a oil deep state like Alberta. It takes a lot of courage to make change happen in this province. Political ideology alone does not cut it. So, believe it or not, with all that we have, we may very well be stuck in a tremendous cull the sac and with a population that supports extremism we are not in a good position. I actually predict that Alberta is going to loose a lot of know how due to this unique situation. Many people I talk to are reaching their limits and thinking of other pastures. Job security is now in the hands of sociopaths for at least 4 years and possibly longer as I cannot predict the NDP coming back any soon even if Jason Kenney fails miserably which I predict he will.

    • Absolutely they’re blaming the NDP. Here’s a quote from the Finance Minister “This decision shows how previous governments’ fiscal mismanagement and inability to gain market access for Alberta’s energy continues to affect our province.” What he didn’t say was Moody’s said our revenues are under “pressure” because Kenney eliminated the carbon tax and cut the corporate tax rate and Kenney can’t do anything to protect Alberta from macroeconomic factors which influence oil-related revenue growth and private sector investments in the oil sector. Because contrary to everything Kenney says, it’s the global oil marketplace, (not Trudeau’s policies) that’s cratering our oil sector and resulting in fewer jobs.

      • Carlos Beca says:

        You are absolutely right Susan but do not forget that Jason Kenney and team are obsessed with what they believe and even if it is not correct they will make it to be.
        Everyone knows the oil era is coming to an end – it is gaining speed monthly, but the dinosaurs do not want to believe it. Instead of evolving into what already exists to replace it they prefer to leave their dream. In my opinion it is over. We better do what we can to move fast into the new era. We are not doing that and so we will pay the price twice and we still have the clean up

      • Carlos you’re absolutely correct that the UCP is obsessed with our dinosaur fossil fuel past at the expense of our renewable energy future. Suncor is investing $300M in a wind farm. The local reeve welcomes the project because it will off set revenues lost from the declining oil and gas industry. If the reeve gets it why can’t Kenney? Here’s the link: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgary/suncor-wind-farm-forty-mile-wind-power-project-calgary-1.5386173

      • carlosbeca says:

        sorry I meant to LIVE their dream – sorry for the mistake

    • Indeed GoinFawr and nothing says tinfoil hat conspiracy nutcase like Kenney lumping in Moody’s downgrade with Zurich’s decision to stop insuring the oilsands operations because of “distorted, torqued data provided by green left pressure groups.” That plus the suggestion that the Russians are also secretly funding environmentalists makes me wonder whether Kenney’s grip on reality is as fragile as Trump’s.

  10. Bob Raynard says:

    I always enjoy your blogs, Susan; thank you for the work you do. I also enjoyed your article in my recent Alberta Views magazine.

    I don’t know if this is too simplistic an approach, but here goes: The corporate tax cut is going to cost 4.7 billion dollars; Jack Mintz says it will create 55,000 jobs. I suspect both numbers are best case/worst case scenarios calculated by people trying to make a point, but if we give them both equal credibility, $4.7 billion divided by 55 thousand works out to $85, 454 per job.

    Is there something missing in my thinking? This seems like pretty serious corporate welfare to me.

    • Carlos Beca says:

      It is corporate welfare and has always been rampant in Alberta. Jason Kenney is just adding to it – he does not mind, he is getting his dividends so it is a good investment even if it hurts everyone else in the province. He does not care, he has shown clearly that bullying is fun in his ethical world.

      • Dwayne says:

        Carlos Beca: The NDP could not easily fix the extensive damage that the Alberta PCs did, starting when Peter Lougheed was not the premier, in a mere 4 years. This is is compounded with oil prices that went in the gutter in 2014. They were on the right track of doing things in a Peter Lougheed type manner, but many Albertans did not want that. So shameful.

      • Carlos Beca says:

        I did not mean to fix it – that is of course absurd – but signals to the public that they had plans. To ignore the deficit in an ultra conservative province is suicidal.
        She could have taken small steps to open up discussion and get people more into her program. To me she failed in that respect especially knowing full well that she needed to drag the public to a different way of doing things.
        To be honest my opinion is that she did a very good job but they missed vision and long term objectives. Furthermore I have a feeling that at a certain point they were convinced that they had a chance to win again. I never believed that unless she was a political genius. I have been in Alberta long enough to know full well how things work in this province. Many people do not admit but like Kevin Taft I do think we are a true deep state.
        It will take the oblivion of the oil business or a gigantic effort to change it.
        Courage to confront a powerful nemesis is fundamental. I do not think we have it and Jason Kenney knows that. He came here because he knows this is the only province in Canada where he can do what he is doing.
        My opinion anyway

      • You make excellent points here Carlos. I suspect Rachel Notley was trying to govern for ALL Albertans and hoped she’d have a second term to fix the gigantic mess left behind by the PCs. She may have considered fixing our dependence on resource revenues by introducing a sales tax in her second term but didn’t get a chance to do it. Sadly when the NDP return to power they’ll have to dig the province out of an even deeper hole than the one it was in in 2015.

    • Excellent point Bob and certainly as valid as any other calculation. I note CNRL announced it is increasing capital investment by $250M in 2020. CNRL says this is the equivalent of 1000 full time jobs. It’s important to note that CNRL attributes this increased investment (and resulting jobs) NOT to Kenney’s corporate tax cut but the end of curtailment for some conventional drilling (CNRL supported curtailment when Notley introduced it because was meant to be a short term fix which would be lifted as soon as possible). https://globalnews.ca/news/6253147/canadian-natural-resources-2020-budget/
      The underlying message here is the economic reality of the energy sector creates jobs, Kenney’s corporate tax cut does not.

  11. CallmeHal2000 says:

    It’s starting to become clear why education is on the hit list. Bill 26 removes minimum wage, and the right to be paid at all for work on farms. It opens the door for unpaid child labor. Why waste money educating the little serfs?

    Did Charles Dickens time travel to 2019 Alberta to write A Christmas Carol? Bill 26 has all kinds of hidden gems from the annals of the Industrial Revolution.

    • GoinFawr says:

      Somebody should read J.Swift’s “A Modest Proposal” in the legislature… just as an idea to cut social service’s costs you understand.

      On the other hand we wouldn’t want to give the UCP and their unfortunately thick supporters any more bad ideas.

      • CallmeHal2000 says:

        Oh, yes, I remember studying that in school, and some students not realizing it was satire. I imagine those students as strident UCP supporters now.

      • GoinFawr the UCP are already sacrificing our children’s education and the health and welfare of all of us; heaven forbid they take us up on the idea of the poor selling their children as as food to the rich.
        You know what might be fun. We could replicate Orson Wells’ broadcast of War of the Worlds but make it so the aliens only attack people without a heart and leave the rest of us alone. 😉

    • CallmeHall2000, this was heartbreaking news. Especially when you consider how the family farm is giving way to large scale corporate farming. Once again the objective is to make life more profitable for corporations at the expense of our health and financial welfare.

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