Should you be thinking of making snarky comments re Ed Stelmach's departure from politics, go for it; you can't possibly be a bigger heel than Ex-Tory Craig Chandler.
I have been wondering, incidentally, what Ed's departure means for the future direction of the Alberta Conservatives: can they stay Centralist? After all, most of the loons have gone WAP, so there's not (I would reason) a lot of pressure within the party to move right. However, this story suggests that some of the WAPers might come crawling back. Which is possible; I guess nobody surrenders their PC membership card in Alberta; they just join other parties in addition.
Before you go and talk about parites moving left or right, look at your own party. The Liberals are now where the NDP used to be. All in the name of power. And why did they shift? Because the Conservatives moved to the center. All parites are after votes and will go to areas where they can garnder the most votes. But here's the really good news. Lets say we have a Conservative majority in the next election. You'll see the Conservatives finally doing what Conservatives should be doing. Governing from the right. Dumping money sucking departments like the CBC. Oh no, I let the cat out of the bag. There really is a hidden agenda.
PK - in the Libs defense, they never said they were against corp tax cuts - ever - through all the latest pre-election posturing that's going on now. As you well know they were the ones giving corp tax cuts from 1993-2005, and lately agreeing with the Harper government on further cuts.
All that changed with a $56-billion deficit, coupled with the fact our corp tax rate is the lowest of the G7 nations. What the Grits are saying now is that further cuts don't make sense at this time when we're already so competitive, and should not be considered until we get the deficit under control.
I don't consider this moving to the NDP-left. Cripes the dippers want to raise corp taxes back to 90's levels. What the Libs have moved to is sanity. We can't continue to borrow and spend like the Americans are doing, and who Harper/Flaherty are mimicking.
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Looking forward to your reply
TofKW - Maybe someone should tell Ignatieff (and you) that these cuts were lpassed in the 2007 budget . . . before the deficit hit $56. billion. He is throwing stuff against the wall and hoping something will stick.
PK - I'm well aware of the glacial movement of our government (at any time past & present) in terms of budget plans. That's why the Libs are saying 'rescind the tax cuts'. Actually what they mean is delay, but that doesn't sound as good with all the pre-election chest thumping that's going on (by all parties).
Your argument still doesn't help your case about the Flaherty/Harper finance team's borrow & spend irresponsibility over the past few years. And everyone should have seen this coming - after all deficit Jimmy is a well known commodity here in Ontario. It takes a special skill to create a $6 billion deficit ...in booming economic times. I don't think even the NDP could manage that.
And PK is worried it will...
TofKW - Lets take a look at the last 5 years.
1. Canada is in the BEST shape of all G7 countries. The recession hit the whole world, not just Canada.
2. What would the Liberals have done differently during this time that would have lessened the deficit? Ignatieff has never suggested a single thing. And I have never heard any Liberal define in detail about what approach they would have taken?
Harper guided Canada through these times carefully. Sure there were things I disagreed with but we came out ahead of other countries.
My final point is that if all the world's minds couldn't keep their collected countries from going in the hole, what makes you think the Liberals would have done a better job than the Conservatives did?
1. This is such BS. Canada is in a better spot than other countries for two reasons: (a)we're a resource based economy that supplies the BRIC nations which continued to demand our resources (b)the only reason our banking system didn't collapse is because the Liberals managed to hold off the bank mergers that Harper was a big fan of.
2.Here we go again, is it really that hard to understand that the CPC was running a deficit before the crisis hit? And even then, the stimulus program wasted millions on hockey arenas and nonsense vote buying schemes. Keynes thought you could stimulate demand by paying people to dig holes and then fill them back up again, but he wasn't actually advocating that. We had a chance to bring the country into the 21st Century, and not surprisingly, the CPC didn't like the idea.
And can I just say this "What would the Liberals have done differently?" line is the lowest form of hackery. Are we not allowed to judge the performance of current governments without resorting to fantasy counterfactuals?
*- Canada is in the BEST shape of all G7 countries.
Thanks in large part to Paul Martin, as Harper (as Alliance leader) was against many of the policies the Canadian government implemented under Martin's time as finance minister. Harper now takes credit for them. BTW - I see Martin is helping out the Tory-lead coalition government in the UK lately with budget advice ...I note a distinct lack of asking for Harper's help. I don't blame them.
*- The recession hit the whole world, not just Canada.
So that means the bulk of the recovery is likewise a product of global forces, again nothing to do with Harper.
*- What would the Liberals have done differently during this time that would have lessened the deficit?
Easy, the GST would still be at 7% (they would cut income taxes instead, as they should) and that $12-billion contingency fund would not have been spent. That was there specifically to cushion us from deficit spending should an inevitable recession hit. Also we would not have been in a structural deficit prior to the recession, and before a single penny of EAP money was ever spent. The Libs are vague on what they would have spent the EAP money on (R&D, infrastructure, blah, blah, blah) because Harper consistently steals their best ideas.
Say what you want about those 'tax & spend' Liberals, they are proven better financial managers than those 'borrow & spend' Reformatories. Of course, a proper Progressive Conservative government would be best right now, but since they don't exist (except the few of us holding out hope of Harper being replaced by Bernard Lord) then the Grits are the next best choice. Tough to say, but true.
*- ...what makes you think the Liberals would have done a better job than the Conservatives did?
I pointed out many reasons already. Sad for me to admit as an old Red Tory, but the grits are not the same party they were under Trudeau. Oh they are still shifty and do all they can to obtain power (Harper learned from the best) ...but unlike the 70's they seem to have gone rightward just enough to now possess a good track record of fiscal management. The Reformatories have adopted the ideals of the Republicans to our south, who are proven failures. This whole recession was triggered by them and their lax policies regarding bank deregulation. BTW - a policy Harper criticized Paul Martin about, in terms of our country maintaining strict regulation to minimize risk-taking.
I suspect he'll become the new leader. The Tories want to win back their base (and many just left because they were pissy about Ed) so it seems pretty clear he'll get the nod at the leadership convention, really a coronation. He'll then proceed to out-Wild Rose the Wild Rose Alliance by attacking the public sector and slashing budgets in a manner that will make members of the nurses' and teachers' union look back at the Klein years fondly (attacking elements of the public sector is red meat for Alberta conservatives).
It will be interesting to watch.
nos200, you can't have a coronation when voting for leader is open to anyone, of any political persuasion, with $5 in their pocket.
You may be right and he may become leadership, but it can't be called a coronation because there's no small unified group of people with control over who wins.
If there were, Stelmach would have never won in the first place. It would have been Morton or Dinning.
Only in Alberta, would someone who's been an MLA for 17 years and who's been provincial premier for four years be considered a political failure when he leaves office for reasons other than being hit by a rutting moose.
and then Ted Morton's name is bandied about as an example of prime leadership potential?
Only in Alberta. Where my MLA might as well be a stuffed plush toy for the occupation of legislature value.
vw: gonea. definition: the social disease suffered by political leaders who need to leave office before it's cured.
I would hate to have Morton for premier; even Danielle Smith would be better, marginally. But maybe we'll get lucky and they will do each other in.
I predicted the Premier stepping down a week ago.
I predict a Ted Morton coronation - there is no credible challenger, and any who do show up will be window dressing to make it look good and gather press.
The result - minority PC government, WRA in opposition.
I wasn't in the country during the leadership race but I thought Stelmach won because so many people did not want Morton. One thing about the Alberta PCP is that anyone with a membership can vote, which means people like me buy memberships.
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