October 4, 2010

Let's Get Ready to Rumble!

Category: Political — Cranky @

November is right around the corner, which means we’re knee-deep in American election fever! The ads are coming fast and furious, each one telling you why a particular candidate is evil, and how many puppies they’ve killed, recently and lifetime. It’s all about the Elephant and the Donkey, so let’s meet our contestants!

In the red corner, sporting immaculate suits and representing affluent, old, and primarily white men, are the Republicans. They’re politically adept, vote as a block, and are all about power. Even as the minority they’ve managed to stymie the current administration, using filibusters against bill after bill, grinding much of the Senate to a halt. They would be perfectly willing to let the entire country burn to the ground if it meant they could regain the presidency. They don’t seem to understand that the current no-win economic situation was primarily facilitated by the republican party.

In the blue corner, hip and current, are the democrats. They don’t seem to “get” politics, and they don’t vote as a group, which hands control right back to the republicans. Anything they’ve managed to push through since gaining power has been watered down and impotent. They don’t understand the wielding of power, and they have no concept of fiscal reality. They’re destroying the economic future of their country by adding trillions to their debt to avoid short term pain. When Obama took office I said there was nothing he could do to fix the crash – and I think that’s true. What I didn’t expect is that he would make it worse. He actually believes you can spend your way out of debt. The democrats are disorganized and divided.

And so, as the mid-term elections run their course, I think we can look at this match-up and come away with one conclusion:

America… is… screwed.


October 15, 2008

Some Thoughts On The Canadian Federal Election

Category: Political — Cranky @

As the Conservatives take power once again in a minority government I thought I’d jot down my thoughts on the results.

I’m satisfied. I would have preferred a slim majority, but a strong minority is acceptable.

We’re the only G7 nation with projected growth this year. Changing leadership when you’re the only floating boat seems like a bad idea.

A carbon tax that was really about the environment would be handed back to the province that pays it in order to fund the search for new technologies to reduce emissions. A tax that simply leaves the province and goes east is nothing but a money grab.

Stephane Dion was bound and determined to cripple the real economic engine of Canada – Alberta – in order to gain power in the east. For sanity’s sake, he had to be defeated. If he actually won, I’d like to think some forward-thinking individual would have put a bullet in him eventually.

The idea that a party responsible for wasting billions on a failed gun registry is the right choice to lead us in uncertain economic times is ludicrous.

Jack Layton… what can I say about Jack? The man makes me ill. I’m glad, however, that they robbed the Liberal party of votes on such a large scale.

There’s something darkly comical about the fact that the Marxist-Leninist party had a candidate in my riding. I shouldn’t be surprised. Large numbers of Canadians are very socialist.

I’m ready for western separation, but this will tide us over. Stephen Harper is as good as it gets for Alberta.


March 6, 2008

The Demon at the Door

Category: Political — Cranky @

First and foremost, I’m a member of my family. Second to that, I’m a member of my community. Up next is my city, and thereafter comes my province. I’m an Albertan before I’m a Canadian. Do I feel any particular allegiance to Canada? Not really. My country is known for its good will, which is another way of saying it’s dull as dishwater. Canada does not inspire me to be a patriot. It just sits there.

So it is easy for me to say that I would fully support a revival of the Western Canadian Alliance.

Over the next few years the economic problems of the United States will become the problems of eastern Canada. Ontario will flirt with being a “have not” province, and Quebec, already a significant recipient of transfer payments, will require additional cash injections. To date, Alberta has contributed nearly $250 billion after adjusting each year for inflation.

Already there are many politicians crying out for a return to what is known as the “Ten Province Standard” method of calculating transfer payments, which would bring Alberta’s oil and gas revenues into the picture. As non-renewable resources, they have been excluded. It is only a matter of time before another attempt is made to hijack these revenues to prop up the rest of Canada. The “National Energy Program” is reviled in Alberta to this day.

This desire to steal from Alberta is difficult to accept, given how Ontario bills itself the “economic engine of Canada”. Without the oil of western Canada, that engine would simply die.

The questions that come into play when considering separation are these:

1 – Would Saskatchewan and British Columbia come with us? I believe they would. Access to the western coast is important to us.

2 – Would the money that no longer flowed out of western Canada be sufficient to establish a military? Easily. After all, the entire military budget for Canada was $13 billion in 2004. With half the land mass and only one coast, we would be able to militarize in under three years.

3 – Would eastern Canada be willing to deal with our new country? I believe they would have no choice. They need our products as much as the U.S. does.

4 – Would the cost to run a country be noticeably higher than the cost to run four provinces? Doubtful.

5 – Would our population be sufficient? I believe our population would grow significantly as soon as separation was announced. Anybody with family here, and anybody with poor prospects elsewhere, will head west.

6 – Are there any good reasons to stay? I can’t think of any.

Sooner or later eastern Canada will be at our door. They won’t be begging – they’ll be demanding. At that point we have a decision to make.

Let’s opt out.