Premier Wall’s statement that the provinces are an effective counter balance to the federal Parliament is just silly. Think about it, the Parliament and the Federal Government has exclusive control over criminal law in Canada. So not only do they control the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the Parliament of Canada unilaterally dictates all of the rules that describe criminal behaviour and defines the state of criminal law for every citizen, government and police force in Canada.Read more
Where do the Alberta Liberals go from here? Since May 5th, I have heard that question many times and I think the answer comes from understanding what it means to be Liberal. Since 2011, I have written a lot of words about this topic on my blog. Over that time, some words have been used more than others. For example, when my hands type about the purpose of a Canadian Government, my minds flows back to the balance established by over 100 years of effort: to preserve “peace, order and good government” through the establishment of reasonable limits that are “demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society”. It is that balance which is essential for it both respects the will of the majority; while not imposing a state of tyranny on the various minorities that remain within society. It is these words that I cherish for they provide the balance that society should wish to obtain.Read more
As David Swann’s tenure as interim leader of the Alberta Liberal Party draws to a close, I have been talking to a number of people and thinking about what should be the qualifications of the next leader. Increasingly, people that I have talked to have said that the next leader needs to be experienced. They should have been elected or have past qualification as an MP, MLA or such. And my response is simple: why?
The basic argument that underlies most Western Liberal Democracies stems from the concept that any citizen who is able to convince enough of their compatriots to follow them should be able to take any elected office through an election. Or put differently, if experience was required Barack Obama would never have been qualified to be President of the United States because, as most Republicans were only too happy to mention, Barack Obama had “no executive experience”. Barack Obama had not served a full term as a Federal Senator and he was not fifty years of age. Unlike his Republican opponents – first, Senator McCain and then Governor Romney – Barack Obama had not done anything significant. He had not gone to war and was not a veteran as Senator McCain was. He had not served on the board of a major corporation or worked in the financial sector as Romney had. Yet, Americans voted in droves to elect Barack Obama twice to the highest political office in the land.Read more