Embarrassment of Riches
But while 4.8 billion is a lot of money, it's nothing compared to the Alberta government, which is now looking at a...wait for it...7 B-I-L-L-I-O-N dollar surplus. It's gotten to the point where the biggest problem facing Ralph Klein is that he really has no idea what to do with all this money. With this kind of revenue, Alberta has to potential to dream big and do whatever they want. A high speed train between Calgary and Edmonton? Free tuition? The best research facilities in the world? The end of income tax? Massive investments in alternative energy? A 50 foot solid gold statue of Pierre Trudeau in downtown Calgary? The sky is really the limit right now.
What Alberta really needs is a leader with some vision, not one sticking around because he wants to beat Peter Lougheed's PC longevity record. I'm not delusional enough to think that person will be a Liberal, but if I were advising PC leadership contenders, I'd tell them to aim big. Albertans want a big project they can get behind, not more of this aimless drift we've seen over the past 3 or 4 years.