A view into the mind of Jason

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Wednesday, May 22 2024 @ 11:33 MDT

Ok, so I've been busy...

Alberta PoliticsBetween work and my cadet commitments, I've had little time to blog the past couple of weeks. So I've missed the federal Tories totally messing up our foreign affairs. This is, of course, what I've come to expect from conservatives when it comes to international relations. Tory black and white thinking doesn't work very well in the messy world of international diplomacy. For now I will leave the foundering federal Tories and look more at their Alberta Cousins. For those of you who live outside of Alberta, the Alberta Tories are in the middle of electing a new leader. A field of eight lackluster candidates have been stomping around the province trying to engage the enthusiasm of their party's members. It's important for the leadership candidates to engage their party's membership. For the past few years the party leadership has for the most part been ignoring the rank and file members. This has translated into a drop for the Tories at the polls and is possibly a factor in the loss of 10 seats in the last provincial election. The party seems to still be having problems with the grass roots. The advance poll for the party membership this past week was a farce. People were waiting in line upwards of an hour to cast their ballots as the party had only one polling station in each of Calgary and Edmonton, and those stations only had one ballot box. Perhaps having private ballot boxes will improve wait times, after all it's what the Tories want for health care.

For the main event this Saturday, the Tories will have a ballot box in each riding. This will ease the lineups for sure, given there are 20 ridings in Calgary alone. It's interesting to note that the one time the party high-ups have to listen to the membership, they didn't plan on any of the membership actually showing up. I guess the leadership thought that no one would bother since the leadership has been training members that they're going to be ignored in any event.

So this Saturday I expect there to be lineups and the usual funny business that happens with Tory nominations to happen. It wouldn't surprise me to hear that the vast majority of "members" in my riding voted for Lyle Olberg, since that's who the MIA-MLA Hung Pham has endorsed. Of course, how the membership in Calgary-Montrose would actually vote is in question since I keep hearing persistent rumors about Pham and his "supporters" at nomination meetings. Add to this that Pham's people, who run the riding association, were also the people who were involved in disgraced Alderman Margo Aftergood's campaign. No doubt many members in Montrose will have someone vote for them, since they couldn't make it to the polls personally, just like in the Ward 10 election.

Of course, gentle reader, you're probably wondering who I'd like to see as the new leader, and hence the next premier. Personally, I'd like to see a non-Tory as premier, but since that's not likely to happen any time soon here in one-party Alberta I have to look at what they're putting forward. Of the candidates some are just outright scary. Both Ted Morton and Victor Doerkson are right wing nut-bars. Morton even claims to be the only "real true conservative" in the race, making me wonder how right wing you have to be to be considered conservative in Alberta. Of the others, Olberg wants to privatize health care so he's out. I know little about most of the others. Jim Dinning is very much corporate Calgary, but claims to want to fund education and health care so he is possibly the lesser of eight evils. In any event, no mater who wins I'm not likely to suddenly start voting Tory (baring events such as lobotomies or other brain trauma).

What Alberta really needs is a new party, not just a new leader for a party that's been in power for over 30 years (remember folks, to an Albertan 14 years is too long for the Liberals, but 30 isn't long enough for the Conservatives). I suspect that if Albertans were to suddenly figure out they can vote for other parties and the Tories find themselves out of government, we'll see happen to the Alberta Tories what happened to the Saskatchewan Tories. Lots of graft and corruption will come to the front and some people will have to answer tough questions.
Ok, so I've been busy... | 2 comments | Create New Account
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Ok, so I've been busy...
Authored by: Anonymous onFriday, November 24 2006 @ 08:45 MST
I'm of two minds about the leadership of the PC's.

Part of me wants to see Morton in, partly because I think he'll horrify everyone outside of Alberta enough to sink Stephen Harper, and because he's sufficiently vile to be the best thing for Alberta's opposition parties in the next election. (Morton's sort of like put Beelzebub on the slate - you at least know he's not merely the lesser of two evils)

More realistically, Dinning is at least a little more palatable the Morton. Although, Lougheed's endorsement doesn't reassure me - it was Lougheed's nod that got Don Getty in back when Lougheed retired - kinda makes me wonder about Lougheed's smarts when it comes to succession planning. (I otherwise like Lougheed)

The other candidates are all ciphers to me.

- Grog