"Separation Will Cost A Million Jobs"
The premier countered that adopting the Kyoto accord would cost Alberta 335,000 jobs and increase electrical and heating costs by "100 or 200 times."
Stelmach could not clearly explain where he got the numbers.
First of all, the Alberta Liberals aren't promising to meet Kyoto - their plan would probably get Alberta in line with that tree hugging environmentalist Stephen Harper's targets. I wish Ed the best of luck in trying to explain to Albertans how Stephen Harper wants to destroy their economy...
As for his numbers, I'm going to assume Stelmach meant "100 to 200 percent" because 100 to 200 times would mean yearly electricity bills of between $75,000 and $150,000. Then again, since Ed was asked to explain his numbers and didn't backtrack, maybe he's sticking to his guns on this one. And, if that's true, homeowners could just hire those 335,000 unemployed Albertans to pedal energy generating bicycles all day since that'd be cheaper than the six figure Enmax bill.
As for that job figure that promises a near 20% unemployment rate? Well, if Stelmach can't explain where he got them, I'm not going to try.
When a party in power starts frantic fear mongering, it's never a good sign. Sometimes it gets them re-elected (see the 2004 "gun ad" as an example), but I'm not sure I've ever seen such a ridiculous exaggeration that wasn't immediately retracted. Maybe "Paul Martin supports child pornography" but that didn't come out of the leader's mouth.
Either Stelmach is desperate or he simply isn't cut out for the job.
UPDATE: My favourite line from this article:
Edmonton MLA Thomas Lukaszuk said he thought Stelmach bested [the heckler] Baker in the debate.
"When confronted with factual information, he was silent," he said of Baker.
Yeah. It's hard to argue with the "factual information" that heating bills would rise 200 times...
Glad to see Ed isn't alone on this one.