Monday, February 11, 2008

"Separation Will Cost A Million Jobs"

That was Paul Martin during the 1995 referendum, in an exaggeration that led to his benching for the rest of the campaign. Here's Ed Stelmach today:

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.


Whaaaaaaaaaaaaa?

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.

Labels:

14 Comments:

  • Please feel free to correct me if I'm wrong, but I am quite certain I read that David Swann indicated that the ALP would at least meet the Kyoto targets. I believe he went on to say that meeting Kyoto was just a start.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:15 PM  

  • People, including politicians, are surprisingly innumerate.

    Watch retail staff waiting for the screen to tell them what change to give, even for simple calculations.

    If I give you $10.05 for a $9.05 purchase, you should not hesitate, and wait for the register to give you the correct answer.

    I suspect he must be trying to say 100 to 200%. He's a product of the Alberta education system.

    By Blogger Möbius, at 7:16 PM  

  • He really should clarify if its 100 times or 200 times, because I think that will really make a big difference to people trying to decide how to vote. I mean, a 100 times increase I could live with, but 200?! That's crazyness.

    By Blogger A BCer in Toronto, at 7:44 PM  

  • "When a party in power starts frantic fear mongering, it's never a good sign."

    Soldiers with guns. In our cities. In Canada. We did not make this up.


    Now that's how you do frantic fear mongering, such a classic

    By Anonymous V, at 7:51 PM  

  • Sooooo?

    It's not surprising. Stelmach=Harper=Bush.

    And, there are people who still think that NATO can win in Afghanistan if they have more soldiers.

    By Blogger JimTan, at 8:44 PM  

  • "Either Stelmach is desperate or he simply isn't cut out for the job."

    Or both... and I am a Conservative

    By Blogger Tim, at 9:11 PM  

  • Anon; I don't recall saying that - if he did, it was a gaffe on his party, because that certainly isn't ALP position.

    By Blogger calgarygrit, at 10:22 PM  

  • "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."

    I suppose the upside is that you might save on health care in the long run by having that proportion of your population in tip-top shape.

    By Blogger Maestro, at 10:53 PM  

  • Ah - but if he would just follow it up with a statement about a proof being a proof being a proof and when you have proof to prove the proof it's proven... then he'd be a genius.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:16 PM  

  • The only thing that would've made it better is if he somehow managed to work a comment in on how the internet is a "series of tubes."

    By Blogger Glen, at 12:36 AM  

  • At least he didn't give away the Tory environmental energy plan -- solent green. Never ending energy coming out of those smoke stacks before the last person turns out the lights...

    By Blogger burlivespipe, at 12:53 AM  

  • "He's a product of the Alberta education system."

    While I agree that many people are innumerate, this can hardly be blamed on the Alberta education system, which has produced some of the world's best results in mathematics in the last three OECD-Pisa studies. (But I'd like to point out that this has definitely not been the achievement of the Alberta gov't).

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:27 PM  

  • "increase electrical and heating costs by '100 or 200 times.'"

    Where's Ed been?--his government already did this with deregulation.

    By Anonymous ace, at 12:17 PM  

  • Man, this was a hilarious read.

    No wonder they didn't drop a budget. I would have loved to hear Alberta's surplus was 5 bazilion dollars.

    By Blogger Matt Grant, at 10:55 PM  

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