Don Martin is a contemptible writer of the Conservative mouthpiece the Calgary Herald (which is to give it credit over the Calgary sun which isn’t so nice). Remember, the Herald is the paper that used Easter to doubly bash atheism. So seeing him in the news (not the opinion) of the Journal today was a sad disappointment (after the Journal moved up by bashing private school fundings).
Today Don is whining that politicians are ignoring this province.
Well boo-fucking-hoo Don. Why should Harper come here if you (and 60% of this province) has pledged allegiance to the Tories? It’s a waste of their time. If you really want to see some politicians in town, and to have a voice, you have to not sound like a whiny prima donna. By already giving the green light to the Tories you have given them a blank cheque that says everything their doing is a-okay.
Here’s the original for your displeasure:
It’s the province this election forgot, suitable only for framing in campaign material as a scene where plumes of greenhouse gases belch into the deep blue Prairie sky from oilsands plants.
Alberta, and to a lesser extent Saskatchewan, is getting even more than the usual alienation treatment so far in this campaign — ignored by leaders while some of its 28 deemed-elected Conservative MPs fan across the country to help land seats where the result is in doubt.
How ironic. The souring economy tops the polls as the ballot-box question, yet the province keeping Confederation out of recession is almost exclusively portrayed in opposition-party advertising as an environmental evildoer in need of carbon taxation or hard-capping.
At best, Alberta is expected to serve as a refuelling stop for leaders’ campaign jets, with a token event on the ground.
The statistics are just too daunting to argue that anything but a Conservative sweep would qualify as a major upset.
After all, 25 Conservative candidates in Alberta finished with more than 50 per cent of the vote in 2006, including one claiming more than 80 per cent of all votes cast.
As my friend Alice Funke at punditsguide.ca found during her number-crunching, the only party that can see the faintest glimmer in the deep blue Tory tidal wave is the Green party, which claimed three seats in Alberta among its top 10 national showings in 2006.
But, here’s a rhetorical question: Does that mean Albertans, or voters in the now-booming province of Saskatchewan, home to Ralph Goodale as the last surviving Liberal, shouldn’t have a role in setting the agenda?
The perennial quibble over allowing greater entrepreneurial health care would be an interesting discussion, particularly if Prime Minister Stephen Harper is heading for a majority government.
As someone who believes in respecting constitutional boundaries, Harper knows health care is a provincial jurisdiction that could or should mean surrendering the Canada Health Act to legislature control.
And while it may be hard to feel empathy for a booming energy province when the auto sector is heading south, Alberta’s economic slowdown should concern the country.
A friend of mine recently went house-hopping in the Calgary buyer’s market, and submitted offers 25 per cent below the asking price, knowing someone will be desperate enough to accept his stink bid.
Add it up, and Alberta clearly rates something more than the 35,000-foot attention treatment it’s getting from party leaders.
True, there are tentative plans for Liberal Leader Stephane Dion, who might run the risk of becoming a rotten-tomato target for his Green Shift carbon tax, to appear at a Calgary rally focused on investor angst at the Conservative flip-flop on taxing income trusts.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper is expected to make a brief pit stop in his riding before returning there for the election eve Thanksgiving weekend.
And NDP Leader Jack Layton has already come and gone, using the oilsands as policy backdrop with altitude as he swooped his campaign jet low over the tarsands to give reporters a closer look at the smokestacks he wants capped.
Even if it makes strategic sense for the leaders to spend more time in Guelph than Alberta, one should at least expect Conservative candidates to go through the motions of running for the job.
Yet, as my Calgary Herald colleagues learned last week, more than half the Calgary MP incumbents were knocking on doors in Ontario instead of in their ridings.
I guess that’s what happens when the election ends with the selection or confirmation of Conservative candidates.
After all, only in Alberta does love always mean saying you’re Tory.
I wrote a reply in:
Don Martin displays the intelligence of a gnat when he argues that Alberta should be given the privilege to set policy in Ottawa. Does he not realize how pathetic it seems to argue that we deserve to be heard, but then vote for the governing party anyways?
The Conservative Party of Canada, formed from the Reform and the old Progressive Conservatives is no longer “Alberta’s Party”, especially when you consider its leader Harper, is from Toronto (the most vile place in the world to Mr. Martin).
If Mr. Martin really wants to be heard in Ottawa perhaps he should give the parties a reason to think Alberta is not a guaranteed blue vote.
What’s absolutely worst about this whole article is that it wasn’t published in the “Opinion” section of the Journal’s feed, it was the News, but guess what: Right wing nuts whining that Ottawa politician’s ignore Alberta is not news, sorry.