The first day of the highway blockade at Coutts, Alberta (Photo: Jake Zacharias; Twitter/Glen Motz).

Using his favourite medium, Facebook, Alberta Premier Jason Kenney announced yesterday his government plans to go to court to challenge “the unjustified use of the Emergencies Act” by Ottawa.

The one minute and 49 second video clip posted to the social media platform was not particularly informative about what the government’s legal strategy might be, or indeed if the Kenney Government really has a legal strategy yet. 

Jason Kenney in his Facebook video yesterday (Photo: Screenshot of Kenney Facebook Video).

Mr. Kenney’s political strategy is clear enough, though – to distract from his own failure to end the two week blockade at Coutts that cost province something in the order of three-quarters of a billion dollars and keep enough of his party’s anti-vaccine-mandate rural members who supported the blockades and occupation of downtown Ottawa on side long enough to survive his April 9 leadership review. 

“The federal government’s invocation of the Emergencies Act is an unnecessary and disproportionate measure that can violate civil liberties, invades provincial jurisdiction and creates a very dangerous precedent for the future,” Mr. Kenney said. 

“And it’s not necessary,” he went on. “As we demonstrated here in Alberta at Coutts and Ontario did at the Windsor Ambassador Bridge, provincial law enforcement authorities are able to deal with illegal road blockades.”

On the face of it, this is an odd comment.

After all, the Kenney government appeared to sit on its duff for two weeks while the border was blocked at Coutts at a cost of close to $50 million a day to the provincial economy. 

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced his government would invoke the Emergencies Act on Feb. 14, and it wasn’t until the same day that the RCMP began to move seriously to clear out the blockade just north of the busiest Canada-U.S. border crossing in Alberta.

In the early morning darkness a few hours before the PM’s announcement, the Mounties had raided the blockaders’ encampment and seized an arsenal of firearms, ammunition and body armour, arresting 11 people and charging four of them with conspiracy to commit murder. 

Alberta Municipal Affairs Minister Ric McIver (Photo: David J. Climenhaga).

So on the strength of timing alone, one could make a weak case the Alberta authorities acted first, but the premier’s conduct throughout the siege was that of a man terrified into inaction for fear of offending an extremist group with many friends in his United Conservative Party’s base.

Moreover, it has now been revealed that on Feb. 5, Mr. Kenney’s municipal affairs minister wrote the federal ministers of public safety and emergency preparedness to plead for federal help clearing the mess at Coutts. 

“I am requesting federal assistance that includes the provision of equipment and personnel to move approximately 70 semi-tractor trailers and approximately 75 personal and recreational vehicles from the area,” Ric McIver told Marco Mendicino and Bill Blair. 

To ask for the federal government’s help and then turn around and take it to court for helping seems both ungrateful and hypocritical. 

Getting back to Mr. Kenney’s short video screed, after some folderol about how the rule of law is important, law and order must prevail, and folks have a right to protest peacefully – the term peaceful, when applied to the occupiers of downtown Ottawa, apparently, meaning white – Mr. Kenney slipped back into his comfort zone, assailing Mr. Trudeau and the Liberal federal government. 

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in the House of Commons (Photo: Justin Trudeau/Flickr).

“The question then is why (is) the federal government using the power that is not necessary to seize bank accounts and assets, for example, from people arbitrarily, extra-judicially, without court orders, based on their opinions or who they’ve donated to, powers really designed to interrupt things like terrorist financing?”

His awkward rambling notwithstanding, the tendentious point Mr. Kenney wants to make is clear enough. To wit, that the situation the government faced in Ottawa and on the border wasn’t really an emergency, and that the Emergencies Act wasn’t really intended for situations like this. 

A cursory read of the Emergencies Act with a note to its structure – it has separate sections on public welfare emergencies, public order emergencies, international emergencies and war – makes it clear this sort of emergency was intended to be within the ambit of the Act when it was drafted by the Conservative Government of Brian Mulroney and became law in 1988. 

The Act uses the wording of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service Act to define “threats to the security of Canada,” including detrimental foreign influences, activities that support the threat or use of violence for political, religious or ideological objectives, and activities that threaten to undermine or overthrow the Government of Canada.

Yousuf Karsh’s famous portrait of Brian Mulroney (Photo: National Archives of Canada).

So to most observers, the events of the past few weeks would seem to fit the bill like the proverbial glove. 

Indeed, in some ways, Mr. Kenney’s own Critical Infrastructure Defence Act – which is much more clearly intended to suppress legitimate protest of the type Mr. Kenney purports to support in his Facebook video – is inspired by the Emergencies Act. 

But then, the only thing that’s really consistent about Mr. Kenney is the way he puts politics over principle. Plus, of course, his willingness to use other people’s money – in this case, ours – to pursue his bad bets. 

Readers will recall, of course, his unsuccessful legal challenge of the federal government’s right to impose a carbon tax, and his lost $1.3-billion bet that Donald Trump would win the 2020 U.S. President election. 

So now, at Mr. Kenney’s bidding, Alberta will challenge the Emergencies Act on grounds that are hinted at, but not yet quite explained in detail. 

The government will also apply to be included as an intervenor in other challenges of the legislation.

This grandstanding will be done at our expense without much hope of success, but we can be thankful at least that whatever results from the premier’s efforts will likely come too late to prevent the restoration of public order and the preservation of democracy in Canada.

Join the Conversation


  1. Peace, order and good government, specifically the emergency branch and the powers given to the Federal branches when dealing with : national emergencies; public welfare emergencies; public order emergencies; international emergencies; and war emergencies. Three of the four were certainly in play.

    The Canadian Civil Liberties and Kenney have no leg to stand on.

    As a humorous if not hypocritical aside, this youtube video of Kenny in 2018 on the very subject.

    Also, a very good link for the Vulgate on P.O.G.G:

    I leave it to the blog’s author to decide whether to permit the links.

    Cheers, 🙂

    1. “He also stated that his government would consider becoming an intervener to support the separate case from the Canadian Civil Liberties Association against the Federal Emergencies Act.” (CBC)

      Back on 23 Jul 2020:
      “The Canadian Civil Liberties Association has published a criticism of legislation recently passed in Alberta to protect infrastructure, calling attention to the potential infringement of the rights to free expression and peaceful assembly under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, in the name of safeguarding commercial, economic and property rights.”

  2. That’s just the blue slime midget being the spike strip on the road to prosperity is all.
    If the Coutts blockade damaged 700 million in trade
    you would think they should be held responsible.
    Used trucks might not be worth that much
    but all those tractors came off farms……
    Does the party of law and order believe in culpability for your actions
    sort of like responsibility if you set a forest fire?
    No …go fight Trudeau… and defend the criminals
    Those blockkkaders be the home boys , UCP voters to a man.
    There should be a police line moving his nibs along if there was any justice.
    Let us make endless parking at the trough of taxpayers money with no contribution to Alberta society against the law.
    That should kettle most of them.

  3. Oh great, Kenney is going to waste more Alberta government money on grandstanding and legal costs. This will probably end up being unsuccessful, but I suspect by then either the UCP or Alberta voters will have turfed him.

    This is more just playing to the base to try save his party leadership in the review that is coming up. Whenever Kenney is in political trouble (which seems to be often over the last couple years) one of his go to strategies is to create some sort of distraction and go after Trudeau. He is one of Kenney’s favorite political pinatas.

    Also, if Kenney hasn’t already secured political hypocrite of the year, this should do it. First of all, Kenney was making no progress with the Coutts border blockade by trying to charm the protesters, which just made him seem even more weak and impotent. It was only a combination of RCMP (yeah the police force Kenney wants to get rid of) action and the use of the Emergencies act that convinced the protesters to end their blockade. Second Kenney has his own Critical Infrastructure Act, which is both over reach and apparently useless as he didn’t even try use it in this case. If he is so concerned about government over reach, then the first thing he can and should do is repeal his own law. However, I suppose for Kenney it is always easier to find the flaws in others than deal with his own.

    I don’t know how much this latest crusade against the Federal government will help Kenney in his leadership review. I suspect by now, many in his own party see through his self serving tactics. However, maybe they are that easily fooled. If they had the political smarts and survival instinct of their PC predecessors, they probably would have gotten rid of Kenney some time ago.

    1. Dave: “If they had the political smarts and survival instinct of their PC predecessors, they probably would have gotten rid of Kenney some time ago.” This is one of the key points to understanding the political situation in which Alberta now finds itself. The UCP under Mr. Kenney purged many of the genuinely progressive conservatives of the old PC party. By doing so, they eliminated not only the heart of the old party, but most of its brains. All they have going for them now are the habits of legacy voters who may not be paying close attention, the motivation of the radical base that remains, and the cynicism of social media platforms like Facebook that will co-operate in any deception if there is a buck to be made. That may be enough. DJC

      1. The habits of legacy voters seem to be waning (or, more likely, dying off). If the cities are any indication, a more sane voter base is growing. This, of course, is par for the course in Alberta which has a strong immigrant influence in the urban areas due to the periodic booms in the economy. When my family moved to Alberta in the late 1960’s it was during an economic boom that brought a lot of others in as well (with much more varied political views than rural/southern Alberta). This eventually led to a change in the body politic, turfing out the hard-conservative Social Credit and bringing in the Progressive Conservatives of Peter Lougheed. Things swung back and forth from there with the boom and bust of the economy and the fact that people often leave the province once they’ve made their fortunes (or the jobs dry up). But I think the slow, long term trend is progressive; the Kenney slip back into the dark ages is, I think, partly due to the economic downturn, partly due to what is happening with conservative parties throughout the western world – a last gasp at power from a white, middle-aged (and mostly male) political base that is dying out and sees the writing on the wall from the coming of age of a very progressive, very diverse, and very large youth cohort.

      2. It is an interesting point about the UCP purging the moderate wing of the old PC party which essentially ran the province during most of their 43 year reign in power. The UCP suffers from the same plague inflicting many conservative parties across the western world: reactionary elements connected to unpopular, undemocratic libertarian ideas control these parties. This has left our society in precarious situation with a lack of discussion about the real issues. I would imagine the UCP cabinet spends more time talking about how much they love Ayn Rand than fixing the health care system. Meanwhile the federal liberal party becomes more arrogant by the day knowing that the clowns in the CPC aren’t going to win an election anytime soon.

        As far as Kenney’s lawsuit, this is very much in character- all politics no substance. If I were the federal conservatives I would be more concerned about holding the Liberals accountable for doing an inquiry about what led to the breakdown that allowed our capital to be occupied by fringe groups for 3 weeks. Unfortunately, the Liberals have a long history under Trudeau of blocking any kind of oversight even though they don’t even have a majority. At this point it is kind of hard to figure out if the conservatives even have a position. Prime Minister in waiting Murphy Brown thought that the government should negotiate with an unruly mob with ties to several fringe groups demanding the overthrow of an elected government.

        1. Do you honestly think they have read Ayn Rand? Or know who she is? (Or read anything longer than 280 characters for that matter?)

      3. That may be enough for a while, but we’ve seen what the same strategy under Harper yielded for the federal conservatives: a party of brain dead sycophants who couldn’t get elected to student council. Conservatives in Alberta will rue the day they threw in with Jason Kenney.

      4. Speaking of heart and brains, I hate to quote a former Progressive Conservative politician, but wasn’t it Jim Dinning who was fond of saying “you can’t suck and blow at the same time”? Premier Kenney should have heeded that advice before he announced this latest “welfare for lawyers” litigation against Ottawa.

    2. Dave: it’s likely Kenney refrained from using his own Critical Infrastructure Act for the same ostensible reason he says rationalizes his challenge of the federal Emergencies Act—that is, he wants us to believe that somehow the E-Act is inappropriate to the circumstance, erodes “civil liberties” (always be suspicious when K-Boy employs euphemism like “civil liberties”, in this case for “rights and freedoms” guaranteed in the Charter), and is unconstitutional, anyway.

      The difference is that his CI-Act actually is inappropriate in any circumstance because it offends Charter rights and freedoms, and is therefore unconstitutional and would be dismissed out-of-hand by any competent court, whereas the E-Act is obviously appropriate in circumstances of threats to national security (the stated objective of the convoy movements is to overthrow government, a threat specifically listed in the E-Act), and to public health (like, Covid, right?), and is therefore not unconstitutional.

      K-Boy’s galling lack of shame has been noted from uncountable examples: he has no apparent qualm about wasting public money on grandstanding for the lost cause (as he’s done before). We don’t really expect him to put his own CI-Act to the test because it would certainly be struck down. In contrast, his challenge on the E-Act is likely to meet the same fate as his other, inappropriate abuses of the judiciary as a partisan political tool for his own, partisan purposes.

      In other words, if the CI-Act were employed, it’s unconstitutionality would be immediately and successfully challenged by defendants charged under the Act and, without doubt, by many intervenors, not least by civil-liberties orgs (which not only cite what Charter rights and freedoms are, but also what they should or might be.

      Nota bene what K-Boy is doing, disingenuously, by swapping defined Charter rights and freedoms with aspirational or implied “civil liberties”. It’s his high art of hyper-hypocrisy.

  4. Judging by Kenney’s weird world-view, he, either, has the worst memory for keeping track of the lies he tells. Or, he tells lies and he really doesn’t care what happens, because he thinks he can sell the next lie to cover that one.

    Okay, so Kenney decides to please his base by doing after Trudeau’s implementation of the Emergencies Act. That sort of action is par for the course, throwing as much red meat to his base as he can, until they are so distracted they have no idea what’s going on. Kenney has employed this stunt thousands of times during his political career, and each time to disastrous effect. Since it appears that everyone is onto Kenney and his antics, Kenney has called out the big guns for help. Enter Stockwell Day, who posted on Twitter that there is no one who understands the Emergencies Act or its implications better than Kenney. So, it tight everyone because you’re in Kenney’s capable hands.

    Now, that it’s been revealed that Ric McIver was pleading with the federal government for similar action in dealing with the border blockade at Coutts, it’s apparent that the UCP government has no idea what its hands are doing. But this should come as no surprise to anyone at this point.

    Meanwhile, it looks like the streets of Ottawa will be trucker-free by Monday morning, just in time for PMJT to pull the Emergencies Act motion from the floor and declare victory. However, the most concerning thing in all this is that Alberta was (other than the US) the biggest financier of the FreeDUMB Convoy. Sending yahoos and idiots to Ottawa in a weird attempt to overthrow a democratically elected government with all-night horn-blowing and causing general mayhem should give everyone pause to wonder what the hell is going on in Alberta. It seems that the crazy Alberta cousin has decided to go full-nutso and may be should be put in an institution?

    1. Just Me: You ask what is going on in Alberta? I would say it is business as usual, which of course is to enable full-nutso and run against government to get elected.
      I do think it is fair to ask if Kenney and his entourage are afraid of what the Feds might find if they follow the money of this ongoing insurrection. I for one would be very interested in seeing a full examination of where the financing for this came from and through whom it was funnelled. But I know this is Canada where conservatives never have to say they are sorry, let alone face the music.

      So, it is now back to our regular programming of Kenney announcing more funding for private health care, cops beating up people of colour and seizing the assets of people without compensation or judicial appeal. And of course, stealing land from first nations, farmers and ranchers for the energy industry. It should be no mystery why so many people no longer respect government. As Bruce Cockburn once sang: “The trouble with normal is it always gets worse”

    2. I’m from one of the Alberta smaller towns ,home of the attempted murders.
      Social interaction has been fun
      “Whacky story about (accused first name here) eh?”
      reply A …”Wow ya no kidding”
      reply B … Stoic face , nervous side glances , stone silence

  5. Dave: The RCMP make specific mention “as per the Critical Infrastructure Defence Act of Alberta” in their original press release on the Coutts situation.

    So was this mention of the Act on the RCMP’s own initiative, or as a result of kenney government prodding? No matter which it was, the kenney outfit knew the act was referenced and did nothing to deny it.

    Personally, I am not FOR the Liberals or NDP, regarding them as essentially useless and double-faced as it suits their situation at any moment, but I am fanatically ANTI-Conservative no matter what drippy name they come up with to describe their parties provincially. I find in the Cons no redeeming features whatsoever and much to despise and abhor.

    Once the Mounties had ended their observation, coffee and donut winter vacation at Coutts due to a tip about crazies with guns among the parked truckers and faced the subsequent attempt to run a few of their Members down, it didn’t take them long to clear the silly buggers out. Sharpens the mind when your own safety is threatened! Is this the “successful provincial handling of the matter” kenney references? What a grotesque hoot if it is.

    The feds, recipient of that Feb 5 letter from Alberta requesting aid, the formal request from Ford in Ontario some time later, then knew with certainty from CSIS intelligence that the extreme element in the convoy blockades in Ottawa and Coutts were linked. I would suggest that what kenney, Moe and other loser Con provincial governments subsequently “felt” about the invocation of the Emergencies Act had all the weight of a sparrow’s feather. Not their business any more. You now have certified crazies abroad in two provinces — ergo, it’s a federal matter and federal jurisdiction. End of story.

    I have no idea how courts see things, but for a provincial government to sue the feds on jurisdictional matters seems like a loser. Many decades ago, as a summer student in Victoria, I had a dolt of a boss at a small federal government outpost of the Bedford Institute of Oceanography. His specialty was driving around in a government-lettered black station wagon, and parking wherever he pleased. “The municipal and provincial governments cannot fine the federal government,” he informed me. The inside of the wagon was ankle deep in parking tickets! Hundreds, he was proud to say while he puffed away madly on his pipe. He was a 6ft 8 inch tall immigrant from Wales, who somehow had been put in charge of a federal department 3500 miles away from his bosses. Since this was 1966, I doubt he’s still alive, but as an adult I’d call him out anyday and be proud to do so publicly There’s your Laff of the Day as to our crazy division of powers in the country. Because my boss got away with it, I was exposed to dishonour in real life in the very middle of my university career. I did not like what I saw, and iy coloured my attitude towards goofs from then on.

    Perhaps when kenney’s suit against the feds (abbreviated as Trudeau in the more hairy-armpit Con-led provinces) comes up for discovery or whatever they call it, his government’s call for federal assistance on Feb 5 will provide the obvious reason for dismissing his latest bout of ass-hattery as without merit. Then the feds can return the favour by suing over the constitutionality of the Critical Infrastructure Defence Act, likely with more success.

    How kenney is going to deal with bankrupt Albertans facing frozen bank accounts and the results of an already approved class-action lawsuit by Ottawa residents against honkers parked in their living space and abusing their rights, will show us the true measure of the man, I expect him to fail as spectacularly in handling that scenario as he has at everything else he’s attempted, barring his seizure of UCP leadership and getting elected. The man has an uncanny knack for doing the wrong thing.

    Because the blockades were so obviously threatening and more than annoying, a great many people criticize the feds for not acting sooner to end the situation. They probably could not do so legally. Once they did on the evidence of countrywide sedition, all the people abroad in the land with fluff inside of brains between their ears cried “foul!” anyway. And that includes Con loons and even the civil liberties types. Those two groups and the people the media dig up to spout spurious grievances on the streets across Canada or on phone-in shows, essentially give not one damn about the damage to the lives of Ottawa city residents or the economic and reputational damage to our country. So personally, my mind is closed to their caterwauling. Suck it up and get lost is my admittedly short-tempered view of the nonsense we’ve faced as a country this past month.

  6. The head honcho of the UCP is going to make a fool of himself, by fighting a very costly battle that he is sure to lose. We will end up paying for this, just like we picked up the tab for Stockwell Day’s defamation lawsuit. That was very pricey. The head honcho of the UCP is also foolish in thinking he can fight the American president, over his foolish gamble of $7.5 billion, or more, on a pipeline. There is still the $6 billion in loan guarantees that isn’t accounted for at all. Joe Biden already made his stance clear on the pipeline. I also see that a provincial election is on the horizon, in 2023, or sometime in 2024, at the latest, and the head honcho of the UCP is trying to make himself and the UCP look good. He’s doing anything he can to make Albertans forget his shortcomings, and those of the UCP. We need the government that was closest to what Peter Lougheed, a true conservative, was. That would be Rachel Notley and the NDP. We do not need anymore of these pretend conservatives and Reformers doing even more damage than they already have.

  7. Love seeing a comment [EXPLETIVE DELETED – ed.] on the CCLA… thats the left for ya. You people have lost your [EXPLETIVE DELETED – ed.] way. I know this comment wont be posted but I dont care. I hate all of you 80yo [EXPLETIVE DELETED – ed.] pieces of [EXPLETIVE DELETED – ed.]. YOU killed the planet, ruined ALL opportunities, and then STOLE our freedom for 2 years to protect your frail, on the brink of death, friends. Now YOU can tear down statues but we cant even [EXPLETIVE DELETED – ed.] march????? Notleys going to find herself in some tight spots this election. You think throwing rocks at that swinger PM was bad? Get ready for the worst canada youve ever seen. I WILL confront your side when they protest, and the next lefty [EXPLETIVE DELETED – ed.] that tries to tear down a statue gets [RATHER GENERAL AND IMPRACTICAL DEATH THREAT DELETED – ed.] on priciple alone.

    1. As a matter of practicality, Barry, it seems unlikely that geriatric Boomers are the ones tearing down your beloved statues of Sir John A. Macdonald. Have you considered asking your physician to increase your medication?

  8. You folks better hope tbe cons don’t win the next one or you can say goodbye to all your lefty freedoms. Bye abortion. Oh well. Killin babies was evil anyway.

    Hey, since the greens tried to burn coastal gaslink employees alive last night, you still think the truckers are the problem? Its been made CYRSTAL CLEAR that there are NO RULES in this conflict. The class war is still a war.

    You’ve burned churches, attacked workers, blocked rails and streets, destoyed property, looted, cancelled… its the thin blue line for me now baby. I support giving the cops MORE funding and MORE guns. Lets light this country up.

    The party is just getting started. Thanks for the invite.

    1. “You’ve burned churches, attacked workers, blocked rails and streets, destoyed property, looted, cancelled…”

      I did? Can you provide the evidence I did all of these things? What have I “destoyed?”

      Allow me to introduce myself. Retired, mid ’60s, caucasian, born in Canada, husband, father, taxpayer, voter who believes in democracy. I always vote for the most progressive candidate and have voted in every election since 1979. I have completed a diploma from business school but do not have a degree. I have always lived within my means and currently am debt free. I have never been arrested, held in a holding cell or charged with any crime or misdemeanour. I do what I can to stay physically fit by weight training, biking, swimming, hiking and have 18 years experience of self defence training. I don’t smoke, consume moderate amounts of alcohol and could be stricter with my diet. I currently have a few Covid pounds I’d like to lose. I do what I can to not be a burden to Canada’s health care. I’m also fully vaccinated with the booster shot for Covid-19 and have been receiving seasonal Influenza shots for the past 13 years when my mother in law lived with us until her passing in 2020 from natural causes at age 96. As a matter of fact, I received my first booster shot in 1964 for Smallpox and Polio, you couldn’t attend public school without being vaccinated. Our adult children, aged 37, 31 and 27 have also received all their shots and boosters as well, along with my better half. None of us have grown a third arm out of our foreheads, none of us have our DNA altered. We are all healthy and doing fine. We also wear masks in public and distance socially.

      I don’t like abortion, would like to see birth control available to all women of child bearing age for free. Try all means other than abortion. In the end it’s not my decision because I can’t get pregnant and it’s not up to the state or the church to tell women they must give birth.

      I welcome any election call and am ready to vote at the drop of a hat. Bring on the election and watch the CPC get annihilated after their support of the White Supremacists in Ottawa.

      I’m not on your side Grimmmm with the regressive views you espouse. Two thirds of Canadians also aren’t on your side. You’re essentially glorifying Civil War. “Lets light this country up. The party is just getting started. Thanks for the invite.” Trying reading some books and watching documentaries about civil wars and see how brutal they are, keyboard warrior. Or go to Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina as I have to see how inhuman civil wars are. But if you insist on threatening and living out your fantasy, just remember one thing: If you come for me you’d better not miss.

      1. Mr. Perfect: There’s nothing good to be said about war of any kind. That said, a Quaker of my acquaintance once advised me that “people say civil war is the worst kind of war, but at least in a civil war you know who the real bastards are!” DJC

    2. You folks always want to change the topic to one of your choosing, why is that ? The article is about Kenneys wildly impractical and unlikely to succeed lawsuit. As far as the myriad of other things you mentioned, they may have happened but to assert that everyone behind them represents a homogenous group is pretty laughable, especially when in certain instances NO ONE knows what happened as of yet.

      As far as a class war what are you even talking about ? Right wing folks and oil and gas workers represent a class unto themselves ? These things have meanings beyond your shallow interpretation.

    3. Facts matter.

      I think these polls made a very convincing case that this isn’t ‘left vs right’, this is ‘half of CPC voters vs everyone else.’

      The attack on Coastal Gaslink employees was illegal and will be investigated and anyone caught will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. That said, nobody tried to burn anyone alive. The only person who was hurt was a police officer who stepped on a nail. I don’t know who you think the ‘greens’ are, but I’ve never seen anyone in Canada that called themselves a ‘green’ who was competent and committed enough to pull off what those people attempted. A lot of environmentalists will be very concerned that this is not the way to further their cause. Most of the people who you see as your enemies also disapprove of this and want to see justice done and the rule of law preserved.

      The laundry list of semi-related grievances that were performed by separate, but related, groups of people, are aimed at… who? Did the author of the blog do these things? Did those of us in the comments section?

      I think it’s worth pointing out that the way you use the phrase ‘thin blue line’ implies ‘if you think cops were your enemies before, you ain’t seen nothing yet.’ You also seem to think that giving cops more weapons and money will lead to a more violent country, and one that will use that violence against the people you think are your enemies, but not you.

      With regards to your last few sentences… I get that you are upset and that you feel wronged, and I know what it’s like to feel consumed by impotent fury. That being said… the world desperately needs grown ups right now who can create solutions to problems. ‘burn this motha down’ is… maybe not the solution we should work towards?

      Some possible futures are better than others. If we have better information, we are more likely to successfully create a preferred future.

      Facts matter.

    4. Oddly, there are gaps in the camera record at the Coastal Gaslink site. Apparently, people armed only with axes can do serious damage to heavy equipment, such as smash in their front ends and turn an excavator on its side. If this is case, you do not want to mix it up with the greens, who obviously have some serious superpowers.

      Did the employees leave the keys in the excavator, against common sense and regulation? Never fear, the 40 RCMP officers assigned to the case will be able to find the miscreants. Will the miscreants turn out to have connections to the Rat King? Stay tuned.

    1. I can’t tell if you are anti-Trudeau or anti-Kenny.

      “Destroying” the province seems unlikely by either politician. Causing serious damage? Possible in both cases (although PMJT did buy the province a $20 BILLION pipeline with everyone else’s money, while PJK spent or promised $7 BILLION of Albertans’ money on …?).

      In either case, labeling a political leader that you don’t agree with as “true EVIL” does not advance a very believable argument (except perhaps in some social media circles), and calling for people to “destroy his government” is reckless, irresponsible and probably could get you thrown in jail in most countries other than the “fascist tyrannical dictatorship” that we now supposedly reside in. Except you won’t get thrown in jail just for saying that, only for acting on it, so it’s really neither fascist, tyrannical or a dictatorship.

      And BTW, it’s not “his” government (whoever “he” is), it’s ours…

  9. I balance this on-going situation with the Notley administration, involving the decision regarding the Alberta WCB. Due to injuries on the farm, Premier Notley imposed the condition that farmers would come under the perview of the WCB. Farmers strongly objected, but it hopefully was a motivating factor to provoke the farmers to attend to careless practises that were causing excessive injuries.
    Premier Kenney is playing a political game. Our provincial conservatives are acting to prevent the the National government from achieving success in turning the corner on Covid. This is in common with other conservative governments in this country. They see themselves as succeeding, if the Liberals fail.
    Yes, there is a cynical aspect to this. At the end of the day, as you open up your bill for the medical insurance policy renewal(with “appropriate profit provision”) , look back on the waste of lives and resources that is on-going now. All over the question of vaccination.

  10. “… at the Windsor Ambassador Bridge, provincial law enforcement authorities are able to deal with illegal road blockades.”
    To compare the Ambassador Bridge with Ottawa brings gales of laughter from anyone who has ever exited the bridge heading south to Highway 401. The blockaded area was less than a kilometre from the exit, a straight six lane road with only three east-west access points. The police simply closed off the cross streets then methodically took their time, herding the crowd into smaller and smaller areas and arresting non-compliers. Unlike Ottawa, the protesters had nowhere to go. A quick look at a Google map could have saved Mr. Kenney from saying something so ridiculous.

  11. Beaverton must be looking at what Jason Kenney is doing and wonder how they satirize it. The stuff Kenney is coming up with his harder to believe than what I read on the Beaverton website, and I think some of the stuff on Beaverton is made up.

  12. Kenney’s so-called “Challenge” is craven political grandstanding, and is being done for one purpose only.

    That purpose is to improve his chances of winning/maintaining his leadership of the UCP in April.

    From here on in the only priority he has is to hold onto power and continue to lead the UCP to the next election.

    Sadly, he doesn’t realize that regardless of what he does, he will lose his premiership of Alberta when the next election is called.

    Make no mistake this “challenge” has nothing to do with improving the welfare of Albertans in any way. Even if he did win, and he won’t, what would it accomplish after the fact. I think the legal term is term is moot. that is, winning after the fact is a moot point. But, that’s not really his objective is it?

    What he wants is to appeal to his fanatical base, which is sure to support him at the UCP AGM in April. He wants a massive pro-Kenney turnout. In the end though, the bottom line is money.

    Why does he want to hold onto power so badly? It’s the power of his position and his weak sycophantic cabinet that allows him to plunder the treasury for himself and his friends. So much money and so little time to grab it. Then of course there are secondary motivations like prestige, ego, maybe even revenge, but mostly is money – oh, and forget about ideology. Sociopaths don’t have ideologies.

    1. Well she won’t be flying into YYC on a commercial flight, as she isn’t vaccinated, and her bank account and Visa cards have been frozen. Maybe he could meet her at Lloydminster as she hitchhikes her way back home…

  13. Using the Emergencies Act has, so far at least, allowed the authorities to break up the occupation without any loss of life, or injuries to innocent third parties, which to me makes it a success.

    Given the cache of weapons found at Coutts, and the jingoist tone of many of the protestors, prudent authorities in Ottawa had to acknowledge the potential for a shootout if they tried to end the occupation using force, which is what I am assuming Jason Kenney is referring to when he says the authorities had the tools they needed to end the occupation. You can bet Jason would have made lots of political hay if innocent residents of Ottawa died if authorities had gone the force route instead.

    Freezing bank accounts and cutting off supplies from reaching the protestors, which apparently required the Emergencies Act, was the key to ending the occupation without loss of life, and with minimal damage to property, and would have eventually worked on its own if the police hadn’t moved in as they did this weekend.

  14. The MLAs from the Lougheed era that I knew sure called it. Spreading lies , wasting money, and blaming others is all they know, while they help their rich friends steal our oil and tax wealth. I wish they were still alive today to see what a bunch of idiots these Reformers are.

    After praising these truckers and getting their pictures taken with them, all of a sudden these Reformers decide it might not have been very smart and try to shift the blame to Trudeau for daring to take action against these fools to protect the innocent people. They don’t want their bank accounts frozen even though they could have been used to buy a lot more guns , but they aren’t smart enough to think about that. The truth is we aren’t nearly as stupid as they want us to be.

    Now Kenney wants to waste more of taxpayers money on a court case he has no chance of winning. Where is the intelligence in that?

  15. Yet we still have these stupid seniors hurling sarcastic comments at us for not being as stupid as them. They believe ever lie Kenney feeds them and although his popularity is in the tank they are a lot smarter than us for still supporting him. As my late father would say “These fools are supporting the Conservative name and don’t care what idiot is hiding behind it”. He was talking about Ralph Klein, whom our family had known personally since the early 1960s. Klein’s mother Flo was a good friend of my mothers.

    1. ALAN K. SPILLER: Very true. And these seniors are influencing their children and other younger relatives to vote for these pretend conservatives and Reformers, and in doing so, we are no better off.

  16. Just a quick question for DJC, when Kenney tweeted yesterday that it “violates natural justice” that would be because it was written to not supersede the charter, correct ? He has to make up some other standard because the basis for human rights in this country – the charter – is not violated by the emergencies act.

    1. Bird: Normally, I think, “natural justice” is a reference to the right to a fair hearing. While the Emergency Act allows the government to act without a hearing on an emergency basis because we are in an emergency, I don’t think anyone charged is going to be denied the right to a fair trial or the opportunity to regain access to their lawfully earned money. It seems to me that the situation is analogous to not requiring the fire department to wait in line to get a demolition permit from City Hall in order to kick down a door and fight a fire. The Emergencies Act, explicitly, was written with the Charter in mind: “AND WHEREAS the Governor in Council, in taking such special temporary measures, would be subject to the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the Canadian Bill of Rights and must have regard to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, particularly with respect to those fundamental rights that are not to be limited or abridged even in a national emergency.” As for what Mr. Kenney had in mind when he said that, I am not a psychologist and so really not in a position to speculate on what a serial gas-lighter is thinking when he comes up with stuff like this. I will say that my cynical attitude from my days as a journalist is that whenever I hear someone complaining about “natural justice” or claiming a “moral victory,” I reckon their cause is lost. DJC

      1. Kenney was educated by Jesuits. Natural Law has been an important concept in Catholic moral philosophy since the time of Aquinas, at least. He may be harking back to what he was taught about that when he uses the phrase “natural justice”.

        1. Well, Mr. Kenney’s aborted (if you’ll pardon the usage in this context) university years were spent at a Jesuit institution, but that was well after he was seven, the traditional Jesuitical best-before date for capturing a man’s mind. He dropped out before he completed his course of studies because he was mad about the university allowing abortion rights advocates to speak on campus. He later tried (without success, as per usual) to persuade the Vatican to pull the university’s Catholic designation for disagreeing with him, which I’m sure didn’t win him many friends in the administration. It sounds to me as if by the time he got to the Jesuits he was pretty well impervious to learning. He is more a product of a couple of private schools, one a chi-chi colonial version of an English public school in Victoria, B.C., and the other his father’s Anglican-affiliated near reform school on the bleak plains of Saskatchewan. DJC

        2. Great observations, DJC and Lars.

          Bumbles is clever, but I am not entirely sure he is even aware of the Thomistic concept of Natural Law. My speculation is that he is more likely using the phrase, “natural justice”, as a kind of ambiguous catch-all to his target audience, whom he knows will fill in with an appropriate and desirable meaning.

          It’s just another version of a politician saying they will be “fiscally responsible”. This will mean different things to different people: for some, it could be mean tax relief for the poor and the middle class; for others, it could mean deep cuts to social programs. In the end, the empty vessel provided by the ambiguity of the phrase achieves its goal – the meaning desired by the audience rushes in to fill the void.

          So, for some the phrase, “natural justice” could mean the justice derived from the natural law created by God so that we could participate divine law; for others, it could mean something purely secular and closer to the regard and respect we should hold for the rights and entitlements of others.

          For Catholics, it might indeed have a deeper and other meaning, as they would be more likely to hear this phrase as part of the church’s teachings.

          In the end, Kenny is just making spurious appeals to his base and dog-whistling sympathy to the anti-mandate crowd.

          BTW, this is not an insignificant number of folks. According to an Angus Ried poll mentioned by Neil Lore in response to a hate-filled and ignorant post, 33% of the respondents supported the “protesters’ demands” and 27% supported the protestors’ demands and methods. Those are, to my mind, very concerning numbers. Let’s also not forget that a significant amount of the denotations to the convoy came from Canadians and much of it from AB. We are in for some parlous times it would appear.

          Here is the link to the poll again.

          It is worth spending time to consider poll results and their implications, imho.

  17. Weird thought – Canada has an extradition treaty with the US. If, hypothetically, we charged, say, Tucker Carlson, Sean Hannity and Fox News with counselling to commit mischief, and diplomatically made the point that we honoured the extradition treaty for Meng over trumped up nonsense so they should honour it for these people and organizations actively fanning the flames of an insurrection, what would happen? I’m sure they wouldn’t actually have to answer for the charges, but maybe they might think twice before trying to destabilize our country again.

    I think we very badly need to find a way to raise the cost of actions which are destructive to society yet profitable for wealthy, privileged individuals and entities.

    1. During a bail hearing for one of the organizers of the FluTruxKlan FreeDumb Clownvoy, a defendant or surety (can’t recall which) raised the matter of the defendant’s 1st amendment rights having been violated. The incredulous judge responded, “What’s that?” Priceless.

  18. As Gerald Butts so wryly observed lately, I am not sure who found Kenney to be a strategic genius, but I can’t see it. Neither can I. Buffoon would be more likely I think. But Buffoons seem to appeal to a certain part of Alberta’s electorate.

  19. I am blown away by this quote from a Medicine Hat person of note who is currently in Ottawa.

    “Dwayne Lich questions legality of Emergencies Act

    He also questioned whether the Emergencies Act — which was debated Saturday in the House of Commons — was implemented legally, at times confusing the numbered amendments found in the U.S. Constitution with Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

    “Honestly? I thought it was a peaceful protest and based on my first amendment, I thought that was part of our rights,” he told the court.

    “What do you mean, first amendment? What’s that?” Judge Julie Bourgeois asked him.

    “I don’t know. I don’t know politics. I don’t know,” he said. “I wasn’t supportive of the blockade or the whatever, but I didn’t realize that it was criminal to do what they were doing. I thought it was part of our freedoms to be able to do stuff like that.” ”

    Does this indicate a bigger problem with education and tooooooo much TV/Information oozing across the border from the USA?

    Full CBC article here ….

    That coupled with the misinformation about the death at the Ottawa protest due to an encounter with a horse. Yes a protestor was injured but come on FAUX News fact check!

  20. Lets hope they all get a $100,000.fine, one year in jail, and a criminal record making it impossible for them to travel to other countries for a holiday. But that’s likely too much to hope for when many judges are under the thumb of conservatives, as lawyers told me during the Klein years.

  21. Jason Kenney’s propensity to be a drama queen, and engage in all the high-theatre and huffing and puffing of these completely useless anti-Trudeau initiatives, sometimes reveals how fearful he is of discovery. Someone whose closet is a big and as deep as Kenney’s should be so worries as to be driven to drink. In Kenney’s case a budget bottle of Jameson’s could be easily subbed out for a robust and stellar “Macallan single malt whisky” — 75 year old is a mere pittance at $16K. It’s on the public dime, so live it up at the Sky Palace.

    The Emergencies Act takes a forward-thinking approach to dark money funding, particular the use of stealthy cryptocurrencies. This may what Kenney is really afraid of, that the dark money flow into the UCP and the CPC has been breached by the Liberals. I supposed the upcoming all-party review of the events in Ottawa and elsewhere in the country will be investigating how foreign dark funds provided for all this mayhem. I have no doubt that Trudeau will suddenly find many friends among the NDP and the Bloc Québécois in hanging the CONs on their own dark money petard. Revealing that the CPC is a foreign-funded extension of the Trumpian GOP and their well heeled backers will bring the Canadian right-wing dream crashing down.

    I think we maybe very close to PMJT’s own “Just watch me” moment.

    1. And speaking of closets, can anyone explain why not one journalist nor P.I. has revealed where JK went last summer, how he travelled, and with whom? And has anyone traced UCP funding via the alphabet gang of CWF, CTF, CFIB and other “foundations” with US ties?

  22. While this action may be as simple as picking a fight with Trudeau and pandering to the base (if Kenney can get funds unfrozen he will be a hero), I also see it as a subsidy for the legal fight that awaits those arrested as part of the protests. The specific comments on frozen funds tell us a lot about why he’s doing this. Running a constitutional challenge is expensive and if the criminals and the organizations who support them don’t need to spend money on those arguments then they will have more to spend on other right wing goofery.

  23. Neil Lore —” Fox and friends”… the spiders’ web I’ve been able to piece together is becoming a rather scary tapestry ..
    Article from Regina Leader Post– about some of the organizers : Paul Alexander,(former Dtrump adm.official ), Tom Marazzo/ Dr Roger Hodkinson (purportedly a pathologist from Edmonton) , con MP Melissa L, going on Fox right after her seemingly outrage at JT’s remarks, Daniel B tweeting just before he turned himself in ( links to Yanky Pollak)… ops with certain prominent Con’s, Lawyer that was at the bail hearing.. on CBC saying Tamara’s husband flew to Ottawa on private jet (since neither of them is vaxxed) by some anonymous person giving him $5000.and she didn’t do anything wrong, she was just using ” her 1st amendment rights”, Add in candy loving Tucker, to Helicoptering Pillows..the menagerie ,makes my stomach curdle.

    How many times in the last little while have we seen Con.members taking pictures with , hmmm,”questionable” people, ……

    Oh right, ” I take alot of pictures with people, I don’t know, never met them ,they just like me”

    As DJC stated “CSIS Act –including detrimental foreign influences it’s a pretty big cast, not even counting the rich ducks .to which I have 2 words — and they’re not Happy Motoring — now ,I have to visit the swear jar..

    1. I really think we should be breaking up these gigantic propaganda empires. Fox is the worst but they are all terrible for society. Suppose you’re getting out of school wanting to become a journalist. One employer (postmedia) controls 90% of the non cbc media in Canada. You either compete for the chance to produce neoliberal propaganda, or you try to work for cbc, which has its own challenges, or you have to support you writing efforts with a full time job. It’s very hard to make a living wage for the types of people we want to see in journalism. Remember the archetype of the “hero reporter?” Clark Kent, Peter Parker, April O’Neil… who would they work for in today’s media landscape?

      DJC – interested in your opinions on this. Are there simple, easily understood policy requests we could be making of our elected leaders to address this, or is this one of those things you need a ton of background information on order to have a useful opinion?

  24. Just to get a sense of how crazy things are in the US, a New Mexico congresswoman (R) has tabled legislation that would allow Canadian Convoy protesters to seek temporary asylum in the US.

    Considering that this is a GOP sponsored initiative, this maybe an indication that the Republicans are looking to recruit Canadian right-wingnuts as soldiers for the upcoming midterm and presidential elections in 2022 and 2024. There was a time (and perhaps they still do) when Americans would offer their allies safe haven to immigrate to the US, if their act of supporting the US left them in danger.

    Yes, this is the level of the dementia in the US. And it maybe the level of the dementia among the right-wing in Canada.

    I recall loose-nut, Kevin J. Johnson frequent legal troubles, not to mention his failed effort to become the mayor of Calgary, caused him to escape to the US and seek political asylum there. Johnson’s adventure lead him to wandering over the US border area, in -31C weather in the middle of December. An ally called US Border Security because she couldn’t find him and feared for his safety. USBS rescued him and Johnson promptly declared he was seeking asylum because — and this is really rich — the Canadian government had put a fatwa on his head and marked him for death. USBS didn’t buy his goofiness and sent him to the Canadian Border Services. If this is the sort of stuff that has inspired the Trumpian GOP to act on behalf of these beleaguered because they believe their lives are in danger in Canada is just plain insane.

    I expect to see the CONs in Canada begin a process to protect the Convoy protesters (their voters) from imaginary threats, like death sentences, torture, exile, prison, etc. I mean one person’s terrorist is another’s freeDUMB fighter, right?


  25. I saw something on the news last night that made my day. The night before a woman was hurling sarcastic comments at a reporter and accusing them of being liars, in Ottawa. I would have slugged her.

    Last night the very same woman made the mistake of doing it to a police officer. The next picture showed her sitting on the ground and someone was trying to wash the pepper spray out of her eyes with a bottle of water. I doubt she will be that stupid again.

    1. Depending on what odds might be offered, I would be very tempted to cover any bet about whether she is stupid enough to do it again..

      Intelligence seems to be a pretty rare commodity amongst the foaming at the mouth anti-mask/anti-vax crowd…

  26. A conspiracy-minded acquaintance of mine, who refuses to be vaxxed because COVID isn’t real. Really. She believes that the whole thing is an Illuminati & Bilderberger plot to implement a population reduction strategy, by “programming” a maximum age into the population. I’ve let her know already that we all live too long, anyway.

    She proposed an interesting claim that I have heard elsewhere. The claim is that Kenney is PMJT’s mole and a means to destroy Alberta, once and for all. Intrigued, I asked her for more details and the stuff that came back was impressive.

    Her story: when Trudeau first entered the House of Commons in 2008, he was paired with Jason Kenney in a kind of orientation setting. It was at this point that Kenney and Trudeau bonded. It’s hard to say how or why it happened, but she declared that Trudeau has this talent for swooning people. And there was also the situation where the LPC was so broken, Trudeau was the foreseeable shoe in as its leader.

    Fast forward to 2015, Trudeau becomes PM, the Liberals form a government, Harpo is kicked to the curb, and Kenney still wants to be PM. Not wanting to languish in the back benches, Kenney returns to Alberta to create the UCP and foist his form of governance on Albertans. It didn’t go well and circumstances didn’t improve. At some point, Trudeau approaches Kenney with an offer. Trudeau, still mad at Alberta for giving his father the finger, plots a campaign, using Kenney as his mole, to ruin Alberta in every conceivable way. Kenney finds a lot of morally compromised people to help him. Since Kenney isn’t from Alberta (She said he was from Ontario, but she’s sketchy about anything about him after that.) he’s will to go along with Trudeau. Rona (Rosa) Ambrose took a gig in Washington D.C. with the endorsement of Chrystia Freeland, so everyone has their price.

    It’s a cool conspiracy theory and I really hope it’s true.

    1. Well, Just, don’t hold your breath waiting for that one to turn out to be true. One thing your conspiratorially minded friend got right, after a fashion, is that Mr. Kenney was born in Ontario, so I guess that makes him “from” there. He was pretty young when he was dragged by his family off to bleakest Saskatchewan, however, so I think we have to admit he’s our fellow westerner. DJC

  27. At coffee this morning our senior group were talking about these mindless Albertans who are so easy to fool and we all agreed that a lot of them are our fellow seniors. Believing every lie Kenney and these truckers feed them.

    We are also fed up with these newspapers who are egging them on , but refuse to print anything bad anyone has to say about these Reformers. A lot of the papers will not print any letters pointing out the truth about Jason Kenney

    But print everything bad said about Notley or Trudeau and somehow they think that’s smart.

    We consider them to be a big problem. Helping Kenney spread his lies by encouraging these stupid people to hurl their sarcastic comments at Trudeau and Notley shows how stupid they are. It’s no surprise that the Sun was forced to cut 500 jobs a short time ago. Members of my family and our friends stopped supporting them.

    My friends and I are not fans of Trudeau but thank god we have him on our side. We know these stupid reformers , praising these truckers and ignoring the fact that these bank accounts could have been used to buy them a lot more guns is completely ignored by these fools.

  28. DJC ..I have no words,..just watching Power & Politics
    ….from AB Conservative Ziad Aboultaif: .
    ” it is choosing the most draconian piece of legislation at its disposal to fix a parking problem in downtown Ottawa ”

    ( I played it back a few times to get the exact wording, and still can’t believe what I heard) , my poor sister ,in his riding !

  29. Kenney has launched the court action against the Emergency Act to help protect his friends in Canada Unity among others. Canada Unity is the group that had the “I Love Oil and Gas” pipeline protest campaigns and these are the people that played a huge part in eliminating the past Alberta NDP Government to help to push Jason Kenney into power. Canada Unity is a foreign influenced and foreign financed organization that is highly anti-environmental and only cares about sucking more oil out of the ground for profit greed reasons. They want more of our raw below market valued oil to go to the Americans. They also only seem to really like Conservatives. They helped organize the trucker protest in Ottawa in the distant past and recently. This is a well organized group which comes up with a lot of expensive signage to attack politicians they do not like, like Trudeau.

    Anyone group or individual that “Loves Oil and Gas”, which is far more harmful than asbestos, is a pretty sick group or person as toxic hydrocarbon compounds harm ocean life, pollute the air we breathe, pollute our farmed food supplies, cause all sorts of cancer, contaminate lands, induce still births, reduce cognitive ability and IQ’s, increase dementia along with doing all sorts of other harmful damage that I don’t have time to list. Canada Unity has nothing to do with uniting Canadians. It is a radical right wing anti-environmental group that has a knack for using false information to trash and bring down politicians. Every available law in the country is needed to ensure this group plays within the law, including the Emergency Act law. Other laws are required to stop the foreign influence and foreign financing in such political groups. But Jason Kenney will only go after environmental groups, not ones that support him.

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