Sunday, February 24, 2008

This Week in Alberta Politics - Week 1902 of Tory Reign

With the Academy Awards tonight and Rotten Tories' launch this week, it's time for an Oscars-themed Alberta election week-in-review.

Best Picture


Health care was a big topic this week, with the Liberals promising Calgary a cancer centre and the Tories promising that Calgary health care workers will be paid.

Big Budget Films

Both the Alberta Liberals and PCs release platform costing with more plot holes than I Know Who Killed Me.

I Am Legend

The lifetime achievement award is presented this year to Pierre Trudeau. Apparently, he haunts Ed still:

"There is a fundamental difference in philosophy between Progressive
Conservatives and Liberals. The Liberals believe in taxing it, spending it, controlling it," Stelmach told the crowd. "Albertans don't want a government-planned economy. The (Pierre) Trudeau Liberals tried it, and we know how well that worked."

Pressed after the speech why he decided to go negative in his campaigning -- something he vowed not to do -- Stelmach said he's fed up with the opposition "getting away with policies that make no sense for all Albertans." Asked whether it's fair to compare Taft and the Alberta Liberals to Trudeau, Stelmach paused and said: "They carry the same label."

Best Director

Stelmach certainly had the best coaching for Thursday's debate. He looked straight ahead and robotically stuck to his talking points, regardless of what was asked of him.

"Mr. Stelmach, what is your favourite colour?"
"We have a plan that provides change Albertans can trust in plan form. Jean Chretien wants to steal your oil money."

And, you know what, it worked. He may have been Knocked Up and it may have been Superbad, but expectations were so low that merely surviving was enough.

The "We'll find a way for Al Gore to win something" Award

The Alberta Liberals out-green the Greens and get top marks for their environmental platform.

Best Short Film

Youtube heats up this week - Daveberta has a good round up here. Albertans for Change and the PCs have launched dueling commercials:

The People's Choice Awards

Ipsos, Angus Reid, and Leger have released poll numbers, which average out:

PC 45.2%
Lib 29.6%
NDP 10.9%
All 8.4%
Green 5.9%

While these results are similar to 2004, with the Liberals up in Calgary and the PCs up in Edmonton, there could be a few ridings switching hands on the third. And with Stelmach's leadership and momentum numbers still weak, and the "time for a change" sentiment sky high, things could shift. But the clock is ticking.

The Razzie Goes To...

Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach stood in front of 200 Tory supporters Monday and promised to limit annual tuition increases to the rate of inflation. But he got no applause from the partisan crowd.

Other Movies

The Bucket List: After being an MLA for 15 years and staring political death in the eye, Ed promises to do all the things he never did when he had the chance to.

Definitely, Maybe: Ed Stelmach's solution to the climate change problem.

Elizabeth: The Golden Age: A look back at a time before democracy when you could actually have a 45 year reign...

Transformers: After 37 years in power, the PCs try to run on a "change" platform.

UPDATE: Glad to see that rapid response is alive and well in Alberta. After taking a quick shot at ALP (and PC) costing above, the Liberal war room fired me off an early morning (especially in Alberta) detailed costing chart and some more examples of fund reallocation. I’m no economist, but it certainly looks like they did their homework on this one.

And, I certainly would expect them to spend less than the PCs, who boosted spending by 17% in last spring's budget...



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