In the week of Feb 7, 2022, we expect Jason Kenney to cave to a band of anti-everything protesters staging an illegal blockade at Coutts, Alberta and start lifting public health restrictions.
This decision came about at lightning speed considering what Kenney said about the timeline for lifting restrictions just one week ago:
- Jan 27 – Kenney said Alberta was at the “highest point in two years” in terms of people hospitalized with covid and now was not the time to relax restrictions; he anticipated relaxing restrictions “before the end of March”
- Feb 1 – Kenney said Alberta may be able to lift restrictions by the end of February
- Feb 2 – rural UCP MLAs reached a deal with the organizers of the illegal blockade at Coutts. They’d take down the blockade if the government scrapped the REP (Kenney’s euphemism for the vaccine passport system). Later that day the United Conservative caucus chair disavowed the deal, but noted Kenney will begin lifting restrictions “within days”
- Feb 3 – Kenney said he’d announce “a firm date to end the REP …” early next week.”
It took Kenney a week to shift from lifting restrictions “before the end of March” to “within days.”
The stated rationale
Kenney set out his rationale for lifting of restrictions at his Feb 3 FB event. It goes like this:
- Omicron has proven more transmissible despite vaccines
- Vaccines are still effective at preventing severe outcomes like hospitalization and death
- The best thing Albertans can do to help us open quickly and stay open is get their booster
- The REP led to a major increase in vaccination rates which saved many lives and helped Alberta avoid cancelling thousands more surgeries during the Delta and Omicron waives
- Therefore we’re getting rid of the REP
Makes no sense, right?
Instead of keeping the REP for another month to incentivize the laggards into getting their boosters and helping Kenney open quickly and stay open, he’s going to get rid of it.
The ‘I’m going to lose my job’ rationale
Here’s a different rationale that may be at play.
The premier’s party was so displeased with his leadership it pushed the leadership review originally scheduled for next fall up to April 9.
While Kenney knew he was losing support he didn’t realize how perilous his position was until a group of UCP MLAs representing the rural caucus entered into an unauthorized agreement on behalf of the government with the organizers of an illegal blockade of a major entry point on the Canada/US border.
This was a clear signal Kenney had lost control of the rural caucus who felt powerful enough to act without his blessing.
Once Kenney realized he was losing control of caucus he had to get it back, so he’s giving the rural MLAs what they want. He’s accelerating the lifting of restrictions to save his political career.
Bottom line: political expediency is driving Alberta’s public health strategy.
This is not to say the government should not turn its mind to when and how to lift restrictions.
Experts like Dr Tam have suggested it’s time to re-examine all existing public health policies, including provincial vaccine passports, and develop a more “sustainable way” to deal with COVID-19 and future variants of the virus.
Some jurisdictions, like Denmark, are well down this path.
Denmark lifted its restrictions on Feb 1. This is relevant only because Kenney says the first thing he does when he wakes up in the morning is look at what’s happening in Denmark.
He says he’s chosen Denmark as a proxy for Alberta because it mirrors Alberta in average age (true, roughly 42 years) and population (not true, Alberta’s population is 4.46 million, Denmark’s is 5.84 million).
Nevertheless, if Kenney is going to look to Denmark to support his rationale for lifting restrictions, he should bear a few things in mind.
First, as the Danish political scientist, Michael Bang Petersen, said it’s important to interpret the Danish decision in context.* That context includes the fact that:
- 61% of the Danish population has had 2 shots plus a booster whereas in Alberta the percentage of the population with all three shots is only 29%, and
- Denmark is a high trust society. The Danes trust their authorities, their neighbours, and society to protect them. The same is not true in Alberta where Albertans are continually ambushed by their government (scrapping the coal policy for example), municipalities are undermined by the province, and Albertans are becoming increasingly polarized.
Furthermore, Michael Bang Petersen says any decision to lift or not lift restrictions has consequences. It’s important the public understands and supports whatever strategy a jurisdiction adopts.
The Danes understand their government’s strategy and believe their government when it says if hospitalizations rise to an unacceptable level, restrictions will be reimposed.
Not so in Alberta. Kenney’s strategy is based on data and CMOH recommendations that remain cloaked in secrecy. And now it’s being influenced by an unauthorized negotiation between some rural MLAs and the organizers of an illegal blockade.
This is not how a responsible government develops a coherent public health strategy.
Is anyone surprised?
I can only quote @ElizabethBangs who’s comment I saw on twitter. She said, “When a clown moves into a palace, he does not become a king. The palace becomes a circus.”
“When a clown moves into a palace, he does not become a king. The palace becomes a circus.”
This sentence is brilliant and what a clown we have, the palace is beyond a circus asylum
Jason Kenney is now on pandering mode to win the leadership vote and the heck with the Health Care or anything else for that matter.
Carlos: I think the UCP are in desperation mode. They are trying to do whatever it takes for them to get a second term. It will be an interesting provincial election. We will also see what happens in Ontario, because they will be having a provincial election, at some point, very soon.
reynoldreimer, Carlos, Dwayne: not a day goes by that we don’t learn something new about how far Kenney will go to stay in power. As Rachel Notley said in a tweet, rather than standing up for the rule of law at Coutts Kenney’s MLAs encouraged lawlessness by supporting the illegal blockade, they put their political interests first by negotiating with the organizers of the illegal blockade and are prepared to change public health policy in response to illegal action, not science, and Kenney appears to be ready to endorse their actions by lifting restrictions a full 6 weeks early. This is not good government.
It is too soon to remove all restrictions. I will not feel able to go into a business if there are unvaccinated and unmasked people in a confined space. Removing restrictions will, in effect, restrict me more.
It restricts everyone that follows the rules but not the 20% Jason Kenney is desperate to please to get votes he needs to survive.
Snowbird, I’m in the same boat. My household includes family members with health issues. I will not risk their health or the health of others just because Kenney says it’s ok to scrap the REP.
It is reckless & irresponsible … meaning it’s exactly in Jason Kenney’s wheelhouse. Add stock in funeral homes to your RRSP, your retirement funds will make out like bandits.
Indeed Jerrymacgp: I can’t wait to hear Kenney’s justification for why he’s prepared to get rid of the REP. I’m sure a reporter will ask him whether it’s in response to the demands made by the organizers of the illegal blockade at Coutts and he’ll come up with a long winded illogical mishmash. He continues to distinguish between peaceful law abiding protestors and those engaged in illegal activities at Coutts. When as far as I can see they are ALL engaged in the illegal blockade and should be treated like the lawbreakers that they are.
Susan: It gets even worse with the UCP.
Susan: Thanks for another great blog. I think the UCP is being very hasty here with their covid reopening itinerary, and it will end up showing up with very bad results, very fast. (Scott Moe, Saskatchewan’s premier, is being just as foolish.) If they are caving in to the demands of these trucker protesters, it’s going to make matters worse. The UCP had prior covid reopening plans, and they ended up being a disaster for Alberta. So often, Alberta had the highest per capita rate of people with covid in Canada. Last spring, Alberta had the highest per capita rate of people with covid on the entire continent of North America. When the UCP announced their Best Summer Ever campaign, that really turned bad, so fast. Today was good, because those honking horns from the truckers were not heard. In any case, wherever those trucker blockades are happening, or wherever they are slowing down traffic, it will make it harder for an emergency responder to get to someone who needs medical attention. The UCP are in a mode of desperation. There will be a provincial election, in 2023, or in 2024, at the latest, and the UCP’s popularity has rapidly gone down. The UCP are doing whatever they can to stay in power, but aren’t thinking of the long term consequences. I thought I’d share some more music, which is also in my collection. Here is something from the British progressive rock band ELO, Hold On Tight. It is from 1981. It has a good, positive message to it.
Dwayne, it is remarkable isn’t it that after Kenney’s disastrous “Open for Summer” decision, he’s ready to do the same thing again. This time he said with the high rate of vaccination and natural immunity we won’t crash our hospitals. He also knows (or should know) that the booster makes a significant difference in ensuring we don’t get as sick or die if we do get covid and the preliminary tests show that getting Omicron does not boost natural immunity the same way as getting Delta did. Nevertheless he’s charging ahead, no doubt because his rural base is crumbling and he wants to stay in power.
PS thanks for the ELO!
Susan: Omicron isn’t a cold, and it’s not a flu, as certain people would want us to believe. A friend of mine thinks that omicron is nothing more than a cold. A cold doesn’t make it so that someone loses their sense of taste and smell for a long period of time, or even permanently. My friend said he had something that made him lose his sense of smell, and possibly his sense of taste, years ago, and he recovered from it. I’m not so sure about that. Covid, or omicron can do things to people that is very damaging, and also permanent, even to people who are otherwise healthy. Covid has also killed healthy people. The UCP and the Saskatchewan Party aren’t thinking long term, as to who their poorly constructed policies will effect.
“I am Jack’s utter lack of surprise.” – CM Palahniuk
” Courtesy is owed. Respect is earned. Love is given. “
Last week Edmonton Journal came out with a different take with this tweet.
“ How stupid do you think we are?
After 2 years of school & business closures, of masks & of travel bans, of selling out the young & working class to protect comfortable but less healthy Baby Boomers, do you really expect us to buy that opposition to lockdown is about racism?”
“How stupid do you think we are.. do you really expect us to believe opposition to lockdown is about racism”?”
Well ron, when someone promotes a strawman fallacy as obvious as that immediately after asking me how stupid I think they are, I suppose I would have to answer: at least that stupid.
We all know who the Edmonton Journal serves these days and David Staples may very well be someone you trust and enjoy reading but that is about as far as it goes.
Anyone who takes what is going on seriously does not really look for David’s opinions.
Believing what Dave Staples says is like believing what the pretend premier says…..
ronmac I’m going with GoinFawr, Carlos and Sharon on this one.
I don’t respect David Staples as a journalist. He says this is opposition to “lockdown.” Getting vaccinated, following restrictions and the REP is not “lockdown.” Second, there are plenty of examples of racism at the Ottawa protest and while not everyone there is a racist, they’ve been brought into the protest by organizers, some of whom are racists and others of whom are calling for the overthrow of Canada’s system of government as per the Canada Unity MOU. This is not the kind of protest I would want to have anything to do with.
GoinFawr: Got a kick out of the meme. I trust my immune system too, but I’m smart enough to know that it can’t battle yellow fever, typhoid, malaria, and hepatitis A and B without a vaccine if I travel to South Africa.
Susan: Here is another song, featuring a musician who is also in my music collection. It is Waylon Jennings, doing a cover of the Buddy Holly and The Crickets song, Peggy Sue. It is from the Late Show With David Letterman, in 1990. Waylon Jennings was also Buddy Holly’s bass player, at one point. Buddy Holly passed away on February 3, 1959, along with Ritchie Valens, and The Big Bopper. It’s a nice rockabilly/country version of the song.
Dwayne, I didn’t really think about how cool the names of these musicians are until I saw them all listed in your comment. Thanks!
Susan, thanks for keeping my head from falling off. Get ready to come back Rachel!
Beverly: This is another telltale sign that the UCP are losing traction.
You’re very welcome Beverly. Sometimes I have to write this stuff down to make any sense of it.
Well, it doesn’t surprise me that Kenney and his cabal are capitulating to the uninformed or partially formed opinions of the right-wing, pill popping truck drivers. They’re still not going to get across the border, let alone being employed. The Eunuchs in the UCP cabinet think they are placating their voters…what a canard that is. These folks likely support the Maverick Party or Maxine Berniers’ rabid group. Any politician that caters to an unlawful, kool-aid drinking, unthinking rabble deserves to be thrown on the bonfires of history. This is not leadership! It’s being a cuckold to right-wing fundamentalist ideologically challenged sheep. History will judge the Emperhorror of the West, and will punish him come next election, which can’t come soon enough.
Paul, I think you’ve identified Kenney’s big mistake here. He appears to believe giving into the Coutts illegal blockade will bring back the rural voters, but I suspect they’re long gone. I believe the rural MLAs knew they had the rural voters support and they were confident they could negotiate a deal with the blockade organizers behind Kenney’s back. In the end they, not Kenney, will get the credit for making the REP go away.
Even if Kenney makes it through the leadership review, they’ll take him down in the end. Both Stelmach and Redford got 77% of the vote at their leadership reviews, but that didn’t save them. The discontent continued and they were forced to resign for the good of the party.
Continuing “Delusional Thinking” is filled with ‘mine filled booby traps’ where ever one looks. Thank you for the clarity on the lived experience in fantastical Alberta. Slow deep breathing may be helpful to staying sane.
On Sun., Feb. 6, 2022, 5:42 p.m. Susan on the Soapbox, wrote:
> susanonthesoapbox posted: ” In the week of Feb 7, 2022, we expect Jason > Kenney to cave to a band of anti-everything protesters staging an illegal > blockade at Coutts, Alberta and start lifting public health restrictions. > This decision came about at lightning speed considering w” >
papajaxn: thank you for your advice. There are days when it feels like all the deep breathing in the world won’t help, but you’ve reminded me that this too shall end. Frankly I believe Kenney will be the mastermind behind his own demise.
Jason Kenney is way more concerned with the well being of the truckers than he is of the rest of the people of this province. He is obviously on their side but he could very well be betting on the wrong horse. We will see but this is looking way more than a simple protest. Had Trump been the president now who knows how far this would have gone when he has already called Justin Trudeau a ‘far left lunatic’. Time will come when Canadians will understand what the US promotes around the World and how they crippled the lives of millions of people especially in South America. Not really the liberator democrats they paint constantly about themselves. I see it more like what Putin is now doing in the Ukraine.
I believe this is something we should keep in mind even while Joe Bidden is the current president.
Carlos, I agree, this is a very concerning development. I was listening to a criminologist yesterday who said Canadians are just now waking up to the fact that there are people here (he said about 1 million) who do not support our system of government and have been working for years to tear it down. One of the organizers, Canada Unity, is calling for the dissolution of the House of Commons so the country can be governed by a committee of Canada Unity people, the Governor General and the Senate. All of whom are unelected. Can you imaging protesting for a cause that takes away your right to vote?
Carlos: Look at what’s going on in Coutts.
What a mess. Proves once again that the unhinged chaotic party rules by the seat of its pants, caving to the loud minority. Suddenly, when hospitalizations and deaths are still high, the pandemic is now endemic and we don’t need any restrictions. This wave is not quite done yet but here we go again for the best spring ever. Perhaps we should ask the caucus how they would feel being locked in a room with these anti vaxxed truckers. And when the mayors of Edmonton and Calgary do their best to keep their citizens safe, the jackass premier wants to change the law to make that impossible. Disgusting
Sharon, you’ve highlighted a very important point, namely that Kenney has hinted he’d interfere with the power of municipalities to keep their citizens safe. It’s yet another indication of how desperate he is to prove to the unhinged minority that he’ll do their bidding. This is not responsible government, this is a failure of leadership.
An animal is most dangerous when cornered and a politician facing defeat. What we’re seeing is an attempt to win the leadership review in 2022 to survive until 2023 and figure out then how to deal with impending defeat in the general election. With the possible collapse of our health care system with this reckless action, does JK already have friends ready and willing to open private medical facilities to address the COVID cases or the backlog of cancelled surgeries? And if JK sees he is about to lose in 2023 might he sign long term contracts with the coal mining industry, with private clinics and who knows what else? As for the trucker convoys, “Wise words read today:
“When you don’t see your privilege, every inconvenience can be mistaken for injustice.” — Lia Tarachansky
What an excellent quote. Thank you very much for sharing it.
Regarding the UCP’s constant attacks on any valuable public works that actually generate tangible benefits for the Albertans who are paying for them: well that’s just the conservative way, isn’t it? Create a problem, blame it on anyone else, then try to sell the idea that privatization is the only, ‘inevitable’, answer to the problem, especially when it most certainly is not.
GoinFawr the inevitability of privatizations has been the great Neo-Liberal lie of the last 30 years and it still works. As we all know it is the greatest retirement fund for the super rich and politicians in general. I am sure it is the fastest global growing fund ever created.
Survivor, you nailed it. We’ve always known Kenney was a risk taker when it came to our tax dollars (Keystone XL springs to mind), last summer he proved he was a risk taker with our lives (Best Summer Ever), and now he’s demonstrated he’ll risk setting an untenable precedent by changing public health policy to satisfy the organizers and supporters of the ILLEGAL Coutts blockade. There must be a name for politicians who kowtow to law breakers so they can stay in power.
Susan, I think the word you’re looking for is “cowards.” Although “useful idiots” also applies.
Mike, both are good descriptions, especially “useful idiots” now that it’s become apparent that far right groups are using the truck convey to push their own agenda.
I wonder how long it will take for the conservative politicians to realize they’ve been duped?
Well, Kenney does seem to be consistent, reluctant to impose restrictions and quick to remove them, probably too soon. Alberta’s COVID numbers do not look good compared to the rest of Canada, but hey Kenney has something more important for himself to focus on over the next few months – his own political survival.
Trying to manage a health situation by being mainly focused on the political impacts of it has been a recipe for disaster so far for Kenney, but he seems determined to keep on repeating it again, again and again. What is that old saying about the definition of insanity is repeating the same thing again and again and expecting a different result?
I agree Dave. I wonder about Kenney’s grip has on reality. He was on cloud nine after the UCP AGM in November saying everyone loved him, when all the while Brian Jean was circulating in the crowd racking up supporters and Danielle Smith announced she’d stand for leadership if it came to that.
I’m not sure what Kenney makes of the rural MLAs unauthorized actions, but if he had any brains he’d be worried sick about it.
He should be focusing on helping us move forward with what Dr Tam called a “sustainable plan” to live with covid, instead he’ll be focused on getting great results at the leadership review.
I’m convinced he’s toast, they may not take him out on Apr 9, but he’ll either lose or be gone by the next election.
The Kenney Government screams loud and clear, ” We negotiate with terrorists.”
What a great precedent.
Exactly, Cool Xenu. This is an unbelievably bad precedent. And very partisan. Negotiate with the organizers of an ILLEGAL blockade that’s been in place for 8 days because they might vote for you, but condemn an Extinction Rebellion demonstration that closed one bridge for one hour in Edmonton because God knows they never will vote UCP. .
Given that 2 UCP MLA’s joined the protest – one joined the Coutt’s blockade while the other went to Ottawa – & have not insofar as I’m aware been censured for those actions I’d say that was a pretty clear indication that Kenney & crew were more than willing to accede to the demands of the protestors. All along there have been clear indications that the UCP has been less than enthused about adopting any measures that would rile their base of support. If that meant that literally thousands of Albertans died that was an acceptable price to stay in power. I mean, ripping up the contract with the doctor’s, demanding nurse’s take a salary rollback, blaming the slow rollout of the vaccines that the federal government provided before Alberta ‘had a plan’ in place to distribute said vaccines, going on trips abroad with family after telling Albertans to isolate at home for Christmas – we need to vote these folks out. Because I do not for one moment believe they have Albertan’s best interests in mind, except as those interests apply to them personally. Wonder how that health care business belonging to the Shandro’s is doing these days? Conflict of interest? Say it isn’t so!
These are all excellent points Linda. With respect to your comment about 2 UCP MLAs joining the protest I don’t believe they’ve been censured. Sonya Savage, the acting justice minister issued a statement today saying the Coutts blockage “continues to be of concern” and the government will always stand up for peoples democratic right of protest but this crossed the line. She warns the protestors might be charged and urged them to respect the rule of law, the wishes of local residents, and to comply with any action taken by law enforcement.”
It took the Kenney government ELEVEN days to issue this statement.
Political opportunism and incompetence in all its glory.
If the Canadian Women’s Hockey Team can compete wearing N95s, is it really that much of a hardship for someone to wear one when they walk into 7-11? Yet this is the vibe we keep getting from the provincial government. How terrible the restrictions are. Huh?
No, these are not terrible – it is the bare minimum that we can do to protect lives and livelihoods and act as a contributing part of society. Basic health hygene gives you the privileges to interact with others in society, to return (almost) to life as usual. It really isnt’ asking that much.
Now we see Kenney not negotiating with terrorists but rolling over and giving in without any negotiations. It is a huge affront to every Albertan who has done the right thing to protect themselves and their neighbours. It is an affront to those who are suffering long covid, and those who we have buried. It makes me weep that our society is so self centered that we think others should die so we don’t have to put up with a minor inconvenience. Ugh!
Franklin, thank you for your eloquent comments. What makes this situation even more painful is the majority of Albertans do not support Kenney’s actions. They were prepared to live with restrictions for the next little while. No one flipped out when he said he expected restrictions to be lifted at the end of March. It wasn’t until the Coutts blockade that Kenney suddenly decided to accelerate the lifting of restrictions starting with the REP. He said it was time to get on with our lives and, to quote from his FB appearance, “to restore our freedoms and live with joy not fear.”
Freedoms? Live with joy not fear? This coming from the man who caved to the organizers of an illegal blockade at Coutts? Give me a break.
Susan: What do you think of this?
Dwayne, the news clip makes a good point when it refers to Calgary hospitals being the hardest hit because Calgary experienced higher infection rates that most other places. I think Kenney will press ahead regardless of what Calgary City Council wants and it will be another gong show. City Council will consider a replacement for the REP, Kenney will tell them they can’t do so, the businesses will be caught in the middle. It will be another mess that we can add to Kenney’s long list of messes.
It is quite obvious to me that we need to have measures in place to stop any government of this level of incompetence to stay and destroy what has been built for decades in Alberta.
We have a clear example on our hands and it is time to have a serious conversation as to how we can avoid a situation like this to happen again.
Jason Kenney is with the truckers in Coutts and we should be able to protect from terrorists that are willingly violating our rules of law.
We have a law that forbids this kind of Olympic display of stupidity but it was created only for natives and environmental activists and it should be extended to idiots as well.
Carlos, the tricky part is that all we have in the way of measures to stop this level of incompetence is to vote wisely, and between elections, put pressure on our MLAs to stop heinous policies and get out into the streets and protest if they don’t listen.
Anything else, like the occupation of Ottawa or the Coutts blockade is illegal and undemocratic.
Oh, I should add that we need to wake up and see when these so-called freedom movements are simply fronts for right wing extremists, racists, etc. and pressure our governments and police to take appropriate action before it becomes a major problem, not after it’s too late.
Bear in mind folks: every single person you see recording their infamy at these protests are likely the very ones that for the last two years have been whimsically, or viciously, travelling as much as they possibly can, working hard to keep this pandemic alive by unwittingly and, in the more culpable cases, deliberately spreading a known deadly and debilitating disease, all the while complaining about the consequences of their actions.
Coal Rollers are who they are, and will always have been, spreading as much grotesque toxicity as they can produce simply because they feel like they are getting away with it. Like all useful idiots they aren’t of course, but they won’t realize that until they’ve wasted everything of their own on someone else’s dream.
In the meantime these vehicles are being used as weapons to threaten a, like it or not, duly elected government.
GoinFawr: you made an interesting point when you referred to Coal Rollers wasting everything of their own on someone else’s dream. Are those pulling their strings smart enough to keep the Coal Rollers off balance so they never realize they’ve been used? If they do realize they’ve been duped, what are they going to do? Who are they going to lash out at?
It’s a tricky situation and I think we need to galvanize the majority to remind the Coal Rollers that they don’t speak for us and we will not tolerate this kind of illegal behavior. Of course that means electing a thoughtful government that won’t do deals with them in the first place.
Steve Reilly of USA Today seems to have found something
Heartening news from Vancouver!
Cyclists (and police simply doing their jobs) stopped the Covid Carrier Convoy in its duelly, lift kitted, diesel fuming tracks:
Yes, the other cities are learning fast from the debacle at Ottawa.
At least there is one city that is showing its true concerns with its citizens.
The police in Ottawa is actually witnessing truckers carrying fuel despite the fact that it is illegal to do that in the best of times.
It seems they are afraid of the truckers and if that is the case they should get a different job.
Where is Ford? Probably hiding under his desk.
Where is Jason Kenney? Probably making deals with the truckers to get more votes come April 9
or hiding in his Mom’s basement.
It seems the police force in Ottawa and in BC (RCMP) are only trained to deal with natives, when it comes to white nationalists they do not have enough of them.
I only have one word for the premiers and their police forces – cowards.
Carlos: This gong show has to come to an end, at some point. Who will take swift action and act?
Always count on the UCP quickly choosing the most shameful way out of any situation, their base wouldn’t have it any other way.
The UCP as always gave in to the truckers to just find that they are blocking again this morning because of course this is way more than COVID and Americans are behind all of this of course. They are so used to think that the world is their playground.
Despite all of the monumentally stupid, selfish, self serving and dangerous actions that Kenney has done, is doing and is yet to do, the next election is still his to lose. The majority of voters in Alberta are praying for any excuse to vote for Kenney and the UCP. What does this say about Albertans?
If you would like to contact some of the businesses that seem to be involved with the occupation of your capital, those suffering directly from their bullying are putting together lists to help you let them know how you feel.
I couldn’t listen to Kenney’s diatribe yesterday but heard a few reports including that the blame for civil problems was being laid at the feet of people who are at risk of COVID, have been vaccinated and followed public health rules. There were so many scientific untruths in the comments I heard and of course the usual subjects with their “time to move on” narrative in the pathetic media. Important to always remember that on every indicator to do with COVID – cases, deaths, vaccines Alberta has been the worst in Canada!! We have an infectivity rate of over 30%, are in the worst wave of COVID and our vaccination rate is going nowhere – why would it now?
I too will be more restricted because of heathcare issues in my family. And I know that this is not going to work. There is going to be a huge price to pay…both economically, in terms of our access to healthcare and our overall vulnerability to COVID as more variants emerge because of the number of unvaccinated people (btw, vaccinated people carry a much lower rate of infection even if they do have a breakthrough case). I feel so much for parents, healthcare workers, teachers and small businesses who tried to make this work for all of us. It is amazing to me, that despite our wealth, education and all of our opportunities our responses to a crisis, led by political leaders like Kenney are the same as in the Middle Ages – fear, opportunism and violence. . What a sad commentary.
The people of Ottawa are being poisoned in their homes.
Very sad to say that there are in all likelihood people who think that’s awesome.
Working link, here: https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/ottawa-air-quality-truck-protests-worsening-1.6345839
Looked to see whether the Coutts blockade had cleared now that Kenney & crew have lifted the REP as demanded by the protestors. Imagine my lack of surprise when I read the blockade is not only still in place but growing. What a gong show. Oh, the RCMP are now ticketing – ooh, scary, bet that will make them run – plus are trying to persuade the protestors to move to a ‘legal’ site further from the border. ‘Hell no, we won’t go’ say the protestors & further more folks are driving to join them. Hope those rural UCP MLA’s are still happy with the result of their ‘deal’. No doubt they’ll say it wasn’t their fault this nonsense continues, that they ‘bargained in good faith’ etc. What a group of losers.
Meanwhile was at a health appointment yesterday. My attending physician had been on call for 5 days straight – she was wound for sound with caffeine so she could stay awake. Things she shared in no particular order as follows: nurses have been denied any vacation for the past two years. Unless they call in sick they get no time off. 139 doctors have left Alberta since Covid began. 30 of them were family physicians practicing in Lethbridge; as a result anyone suffering any issue ends up at the Emergency department because there is literally no where else to obtain treatment. She also signed 7 end of life orders in the past week at the seniors facility she is on call for. While those folks are elderly & have health issues she felt that the lack of support from the government has significantly contributed to the volume of deaths being recorded. Both the doctor & the attending nurses agreed that promises to hire more health staff were not realistic, as said staff are not exactly standing around in droves awaiting an offer. The point was made that it takes at least 4 years of training before one can practice as a nurse; more to practice as a doctor. I’d add my doctor noted that due to staff shortages due to illness etc. that remaining staff were working double shifts or longer – 16 to 20 hours at a stretch. Which doesn’t exactly help the health of the staff working said shifts. A disaster all around & all present agreed that the health system is ‘broken’.
Well Try one more time
What is happening in Coutts and Ottawa has never been and it is not about vaccine mandates. It is about insurrection CIA style organized by people in the Republican party. Like someone suggested, a dry run to further insurrection both in the US and Canada.
For those of us born outside North America where Russia and the US played this kind of game and destroyed the lives of millions, this is just another day in the neighbourhood.
I knew that one day North Americans would taste what has been done around the world and always denied. CIA style incursions to destabilize a country and then come in and take and do whatever they please. Many people here refuse to believe this but I think time has come to face the reality of those that have seen and suffered the same in their lives. We are now inundated with refugees from around the world affected by this Monopoly game so well played by the cold blooded superpowers blind with greed, self righteousness and liars. I think that by now we know exactly who is running our province.
Of course for years anyone saying what I have just written was immediately bullied into submission and labelled a communist or traitor. These are the same people who denied Residential Schools, Guantanamo, torture, corruption and everything else so well hidden for their benefit.
It took decades but the chickens are coming home to roost. Unfortunately no one is home.