Lesson one in Alberta politics – Don’t fuck with private oil revenue.

Lesson two in Alberta politics – There is no lesson two, please refer to lesson one for all concerns about governance.

Full marks to Ed Stelmach for attempting to get the public’s meagre spoon into firehouse of wealth that is flowing out of this province.  He had a Royalty Review and everything.  It cost him his job because he violated rule Number 1.

“Now Arb,” says the gentle reader, “Why are you talking about Ed Stelmach and the Royalty Review in a post with Danielle Smith in the title?”.  And I say here, “Eager padawans be patient – to understand the present, one must look to the past.

Alberta politics, like most politics, are insipidly structured to make the average person not want to care about what happens as long as the status quo is maintained.  The status quo in Alberta is structuring the laws and society around the model that makes it easiest for the oil companies to extract wealth from the province. The oil companies make out like Scrooge McDuck taking their heady profits out of province and straight to the offshore bank accounts while leaving the population scratching in the tailings-pond for the pittance we call “royalties” here in Texas North.   This state of affairs is nothing new (see Lesson One) in Alberta.

What amuses me is when Ms.Smith of the oh so populist corporatist Wild Rose Party finds a microphone (usually the Sun chain of media, as they do their best to be fox news north) and goes after the government for its spending.  Ms. Smith says:

“The PC legacy of waste and mismanagement is everywhere. Huge salary hikes, new MLA offices, handing corporations billions of taxpayer dollars, and accepting paychecks for doing  no work are only some instances in the long list of PC waste that has come to define this government as out of touch and only out for themselves.”

So, Ms.Smith is going after the government for handing corporations billions of dollars when it was those same corporations that gave her so much darned money in the first place.  Getting all sanctimonious about the corporate pigs at the trough is rich irony as the Wild Rose Party exists to make said trough wider and deeper as soon as they are “elected”.   The Socialist Bullet puts is succinctly with regards to recent election in Alberta:

“The Globe and Mail editors were reflecting the point of view of big sections of Corporate Alberta. Those who travelled in the rarefied air of that section of Alberta, were very comfortable with a victory by either Wildrose or the Tories. Both parties received corporate donations running to the hundreds of thousands of dollars, in the case of Wildrose almost reaching one million dollars. […]

Individual voters take our vote very seriously. We care which party is elected – which is why, of course, there are election campaigns in the first place. Very few people walk about the streets sporting buttons for two parties. People pick one, and cast their ballot. But corporate Alberta had a sweet situation. A victory by either the Tories or Wildrose would be fine. Under either party, it would be business as usual.”

Business as usual.  That folks is the core of why the Wild Rose Party of Alberta is stuck.  It is because their plan is just more of the same (with double plus exploitation of the public trust and resources), but with Bigotry and Lakes of Fire.  How do you make selling the people of Alberta down the river more palatable to your “populist base”?   You go after government waste and corruption.  Going after Alison Redford’s sister and Ms.Redford’s expense accounts makes for great media attention, and might just distract people from the fact that the Wild Rose Party would fleece the people of Alberta for the benefit of the oil companies at a rate that makes any personal expense oversights of the Redford’s laughable in comparison.

The Socialist bullet notes:

It is no exaggeration, then, to say that both parties are parties of big oil. For big oil, the key is continuing the rush to pull oil out of the mud of Northern Alberta, regardless of the environmental consequences. We dodged the bullet on a government of social conservative dinosaurs. But we entrenched in power another majority government enthusiastically committed to Alberta’s boiling mud economy, absolutely focused on a systematic increase in the exploitation of the tar sands.

Remember Lesson Number One. – Just a piece of advice Ms.Redford, because let me assure you Ms.Smith has it tattooed on her Executive Assistant’s forehead.