After we’ve won the war with Russia, a beachhead in the Caribbean! Edmonton MP Peter Goldring as illustrated by Press Progress. Below: Rob Ford, Louis Riel, Ann of Green Gables and last year’s military licence plate, which is presumably the same as this year’s military licence plate.

Whenever you think it’s safe to start ridiculing Toronto Mayor Rob Ford again, Peter Goldring opens his mouth, proving that this province remains Canada’s Home Sweet Alabamberta of egregious political bufoonery.

Mr. Goldring, 69, is the Member of Parliament for Edmonton East and the source many of the more entertaining if inconsequential political stories in Alberta. Yesterday he was back in the thick of it, using the unfolding tragedy in Ukraine as an excuse to demand Canada declare war on Russia.

Well, in fairness, all Mr. Goldring was really calling for was “total economic warfare,” but that, he added, should only be “the first precursor to much more strident efforts” – which will be fought, presumably, to the very last German, Frenchman and Italian.

Thoroughly in tune with the sprit of the era, Mr. Goldring also demanded the West start a religious war by establishing a competing Patriarchy for the Ukrainian Orthodox Church to compete with one inside Russia’s borders. Maybe later we can argue about whether it should be Canada’s state church.

Mr. Goldring has long had a lively interest in foreign policy, and indeed is best known as the country’s most enthusiastic advocate of bringing the Caribbean’s Turks and Caicos Islands into Confederation, an idea that for some reason has failed generate much enthusiasm elsewhere in Ottawa’s halls of power throughout his 17-year Parliamentary career.

He argued that the Turks and Caicos would be just like Prince Edward Island – only, you know, farther away, and without potatoes, Anne Shirley or Green Gables.

But Mr. Goldring’s latest effort should find considerably more sympathy in the bellicose PMO of Prime Minister Stephen Harper, as the Top Tory Banana attempts with his friends at Post Media and the Sun News Network to revive the Cold War.

Last December, Mr. Goldring engaged in a little “freelance diplomacy,” visiting Kiev on his own dime to whip up the crowds in support for the rebels who later toppled the former Ukrainian government in last spring’s coup. Later, the Harper Government sent him back to Ukraine in May and June to make impartial observations about the current Ukrainian government’s election.

On the Home Front, Mr. Goldring is also well known for his view that this homelessness stuff is vastly overstated. “You don’t want to look at it coldly, but they’re really not in desperate need until they’re holding that eviction notice in their hand,” he explained in 2012.

In 2009, he railed against what he called the effort to “unhang” Louis Riel, whom he dismissed as a villain.

While he has spent most of his career in Parliament as an MP for the Conservative-Reform-Alliance Party, Mr. Goldring spent all of 2012 and bits of 2011 and 2013 in the doghouse after he was accused of refusing to provide a breath sample to a police officer who pulled him over on his way home from a dinner at the Ukrainian Hall. In June 2013, he was acquitted of that change and welcomed back in to the Conservative fold.

Mr. Goldring has long been a fervent opponent of roadside Breathalyzer tests on what he calls civil liberties grounds. During his spell in political Coventry, he described himself as a Civil Liberties MP.

+ + +

Alberta honours troops with new licence plate

IMPORTANT BLOGGER’S NOTE: As a public service, to save taxpayers money and government information officers time, I have updated last year’s Redford Government news release on Alberta’s new licence plates honouring the military to serve as today’s announcement by the Hancock Government of Alberta’s new licence plates honouring the military. Changes are shown in italic type. Remember, people, it’s not plagiarism if you’re plagiarizing yourself – a rule firmly adhered to on this blog:

The Redford Hancock government is giving Albertans another way to support the brave men and women of the Canadian Forces with the launch of a new licence plate.

The plates, which bear the Yellow Ribbon and the Support our Troops slogan, will be available for pre-order early next later this year. The new plates will cost Albertans $150. This includes the regular registration fees as well as expenses for production and delivery. Revenue beyond these costs will go directly to the Support our Troops campaign to assist members of the Forces and their families in Alberta.

Manmeet S. Bhullar Heather Klimchuk, Minister of Service Alberta Culture, will make the announcement at K-Days in Edmonton today.

Under the Building Alberta Plan Jim Prentice’s Keeping Alberta Strong Plan, our government is investing in families and communities, living within our means, and opening new markets for Alberta’s resources to ensure we’re able to fund the services Albertans told us matter most to them without the words “Wild Rose Country” appearing anywhere on anything. We will continue to deliver the responsible change Albertans voted for. Uh, never mind that last bit.

The first half of this post also appears on

Join the Conversation


    1. I should add Peter Goldring personally led a group Canadian vets to Ortona, Italy in 1998 to meet German vets who fought there over Xmas 1943, and made into a CBC news feature.

  1. Just because Dr. Granatstein is A Canadian military historian doesn’t mean that he’s THE Canadian military historian. As for the Ukrainian coup government’s many neo-Nazi connections, they are well known and have been form months. If Ronmac, your blogger and the BBC know about them, then so obviously do Stephen Harper, the PMO and rank and file MPs of all parties. This raises very troubling questions given the commentary coming from these people. It’s not as if the PM and his O are saying, “well, these guys are bad, but the Russians are worse.” Rather, they are lying outright about these neo-Nazi connections and intentionally misrepresenting the complexity of the dispute in Ukraine. Does this mean they sympathize with the beliefs of Right Sector, or have some other agenda about which we have not been told?

  2. The almost instantaneous accusations from all sides against all other sides, and the media groups in various countries taking up whatever the prevailing view is in their neck of the woods and running with it, simply make no sense. Nobody at this point knows what happened except the people who did it but that doesn’t stop the “experts” wading in without any evidence, knowledge or direct observations.

    It’s all “he said, she said”, supposedly intercepted phone conversations, appearing and disappearing tweets from rebel commanders, and on….and on…

    I think that Harper may regret (I live in hope) his unremitting support of the present Ukrainian government, including the photo-ops at the swearing-in of the new guy, even though he came to his position after a coup of the previously elected government. Has someone got a screen grab of those pictures, supposedly showing Harper’s exalted status in the New Ukraine, even if they shoved Harper in the back row of the enthusiastic supporters beside some guy who seemed to have difficulty understanding him? And the separate – and expensive – set of “Canadian” observers, which I bet were no more representative of Canadians than the Harperistas are, sent to oversee the election of the new guy, even though there were already international observers there – what was that all about?

    There doesn’t seem to be any wish to find out what really happened, whether it was a mistake by some trigger happy rocketeers or a crime of the most horrific sort to gain political advantage. They seem to want to jump in and make the most of this horror to increase their personal or political prestige. All the people who died, their grieving families, their professional colleagues in AIDS research, seem to come second. That’s what makes me loathe all these loudmouths, shining up their own particular silver lining which they harvested from this horrible cloud.

    As for Jack Granatstein, I’ll look for my Canadian military history elsewhere, thanks.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.