The worst moment in yesterday’s televised leader’s debate for Alberta Premier Danielle Smith came well before the hourlong event’s opening bell rang at 6 p.m.

Premier Smith during the debate (Photo: Screenshot of broadcasters’ pool video).

That was when Alberta Ethics Commissioner Marguerite Trussler issued her report on Ms. Smith’s controversial telephone chit-chat last January with separatist anti-vaccine preacher Artur Pawlowski about what the premier could do to get him off the charges he faced for his part in the Coutts border blockade a year earlier.

Ms. Trussler’s report was damning, finding that the Premier contravened the Conflicts of Interest Act, and, worse, that, “the purpose of Premier Smith’s call was to influence a decision of the Crown to prosecute Mr. Pawlowski. … It is improper for any elected official to try to interfere with the administration of justice by interfering in a prosecution. … It is a threat to democracy …”

With the report out in time for Alberta NDP strategists to give it a thorough read before the debate, Opposition Leader Rachel Notley was handed a cudgel with which to beat the premier, which she did repeatedly and effectively.

“You’re found to have broken the law in order to interfere with the system of justice to assist with somebody who had been charged with attempting to get people to commit violence against police officers,” Ms. Notley told the premier. “So, you talk about instability, that does not engender trust!”

That said, it’s open to question whether Ms. Notley’s repetition of that point made much difference to the outcome of the debate. Leastways, I doubt very many people turn on a political debate like last night’s and stick with it to the bitter end unless they’re committed to supporting one leader or the other. 

NDP Leader Notley during the debate (Photo: Screenshot of broadcasters’ pool video).

And to give Ms. Smith her due, while she obviously doesn’t like Mr. Notley, or vice versa, she kept her head and never allowed herself to be goaded into straying from her talking points. It looked to me as if she got pretty close a couple of times, though, which must’ve given her UCP debate coaches palpitations as they watched. 

That restraint, though, constitutes of victory of sorts for Ms. Smith, who delivered her lines most of the time with the unblushing confidence of a snake oil merchant.

As noted, Ms. Notley got some shots in, but in my opinion she wasted too much time on preambles and qualifications, effective in Parliamentary debate or a court of law, but deadly in a time-limited format with a bunch of journalists acting as a committee of moderators determined to get in the way of brisk debate.

I mean, seriously, who goes to one of these things and asks the participants to “please tell us one specific policy your opponent has put forward that you agree with, and why”? 

Jeeze, Louise! That’s like asking a couple of pugilists to pause and dance a foxtrot for two minutes midway through a slugfest!

Alberta Ethics Commissioner Marguerite Trussler (Photo: Office of the Ethics Commissioner).

Ms. Smith’s response when Ms. Notley drew the short straw and had to go first: She burned up most of her time repeating Ms. Notley’s answer, then pulled up another one of her policies she reckoned the NDP could go along with. As Postmedia national political columnist Andrew Coyne tweeted: “Just utterly classless.”

Accordingly, the opening sequence of last night’s debate was the most entertaining, when both leaders came out swinging, and it looked more like a real sparring bout than these things usually do, or anything that followed.

Which was a slight problem for Ms. Notley, since she got stronger and less hesitant as the debate proceeded, and landed more punches as the hour continued. But did any undecided voters stick around long enough to see how it was going. Not very many, I suspect. 

This gives an edge to Ms. Smith, who given the advantage Conservatives enjoy thanks to the tilted Alberta electoral map and incumbency, only needed to stay on her feet to be able to claim a success. And that she did, even summing up with an appropriately teary peroration about how much she loves Alberta that might even have fooled a few viewers out there.

Globe and Mail political correspondent Andrew Coyne (Photo: David J. Cimenhaga).

The looks that played across Ms. Smith’s face when she wasn’t talking, though, weren’t necessarily going to persuade anyone of her fitness for office. 

Still, given the horrible day she must have had – having to accept Ms. Trussler’s report and knuckle under to demands that she promise her transphobic candidate in Lacombe-Ponoka won’t be allowed to sit in the UCP Caucus if she’s elected, which in that riding she will be – Ms. Smith must have gone home thinking it could have been worse.

As for Ms. Notley, no one can say she can’t navigate every file capably or that she doesn’t understand the policies she advocates. 

Both Ms. Notley and Ms. Smith will have video clips they can share with their supporters today.

I call it a draw. 

This is Alberta: Consequences are few for Conservative misdeeds

Margeurite Trussler’s report about Ms. Smith’s interventions on behalf of Mr. Pawlowski concluded on this discordant note: “I make no recommendations with respect to sanctions against the premier for consideration of the Legislative Assembly of Alberta but reserve the right to make recommendations once the Legislative Assembly is back in session.”

In other words, after the election

UCP Lacombe-Ponoka candidate Jennifer Johnson and friend (Photo: CHAT News Today).

“I also recommend,” she continued rather plaintively, that “the Legislative Assembly of Alberta consider whether to amend the Conflicts of Interest Act to provide for a stay of any ongoing investigation from the time that the writ drops for an election until the election results are certified. … Not having such a provision puts the Ethics Commissioner and the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly in an extremely difficult position with respect to the timing and release of any report.” (Emphasis added.)

How inconvenient for both of them to feel pressure to make a report at a time when it might actually have a meaningful impact on the offender!

In a similar vein, under pressure to do something about self-disgraced Lacombe-Ponoka UCP candidate Jennifer Johnson’s hateful comparison of trans children in schools to poop in cookie dough – delivered to the chuckles of her fellow participants in a home schooling conference – the premier rendered her judgment. 

“I have informed Ms. Johnson that should she win a seat as the UCP candidate for Lacombe-Ponoka, she will not sit as a member of the United Conservative caucus in the Legislature,” Ms. Smith said in a statement published by the UCP Caucus. 

“I encourage all candidates from all parties not to use this or any other election to provoke distrust, anxiety and hate between people for political purposes,” she concluded self-righteously. “It is time to move forward.”

In other words, “Nothing to see here folks, move along, please.”

Surely no one believes that if the election is decided with a margin of one or two seats, Ms. Johnson will not be swiftly welcomed back. 

Join the Conversation


  1. I am even more suspecting there is something in terms of mental health off with Ms. Smith. Her ability to lie, and not understand that she has violated rules are suggestive. I can only wonder if her next attempt is to remove Ms. Trussler, in the unfortunate event Ms. Smith is re-elected Premier. And the debate, told us what we already know, but will the voters act to remove this shambolic government? I think it is very unlikely. Albertans are too sheep like.

    1. As the lonely shepherd tended his flock one night, there was a bolt of lightning followed quickly by thunder. A steady powerful voice said “Please remove yourself and your wards, for this is cattle country”.

      1. Actually Mennis, as I was told by one of my instructors at the U of A in my Geography 200 course at the time, 2/3rds of Alberta is Boreal forest so cattle country, not really. Moose and Wapiti more likely. But good joke.

    2. I agree, I thought I was seeing flashes of mania the more excited her speech became.

    3. REGarding Smith’s relationship with “truth” and not so “truthful” is not that uncommon in politicians. we need to only look south. Trump and Smith appear to have a similar relationship with truth. Some politicians believe once the get to the top of the pile, P.M., President, Premier, Govenor, etc. they can do what they want. There is no one to stop them. What they say is the truth. Lots of voters like the attitude because they believe the politician is “fight” off the “elities”. Smith and her “conversation”. she most likely thought if she was Premier and couldn’t help this guy, then what was the use of being Premier.
      Many politicians don’t seem to understand, even if you are part of the rule maker group, you aren’t permitted to violate those rules. They are not absolute monarchs. Those days are long gone, except in a few countries.

      As to Smith’s mental health, perhaps she is a tad stressed and not as in control of her mouth as she should be. She really isn’t ready for prime time.

      Didn’t watch the debate. these days I avoid almost all of them. I’d prefer to unload the dishwasher.

      1. e.a.f.: While I agree, I do think Danielle Smith’s casual relationship with the truth is of an order seen rarely in Canadian politics. I am undecided whether she actually believes what she says as she speaks, whatever it may be, or that she just lies pathologically. Either way, it seems to me, her current behaviour is diagnosable. When I have spoken with her in the past, I have felt that she was a commitment market fundamentalist holding beliefs with religious fervour that the market could always do anything better than government. Nowadays, though, she has strayed into more Trumpian territory, hostile to science, opposed to free speech and free association except when it supports free markets, and willing to play footsie with anti-abortionists and religious nuts to achieve power. DJC

        1. Try watching her parts of the debate with no sound, and cc off. I had to turn it off after listening to her for about the first 15min. There is something in her voice that is abrasive? dismissive? I don’t know but unpleasant for sure.
          Watch her eyes and mouth and the way she moves her head. To me she seems to be smirking at us – saying, laughingly (internal) catch-me-if-you-can type of thing. Sociopathic, Psychopathic, I don’t know but something is not quite right imo.

          1. Roger: Danielle Smith has a smirk, like Ralph Klein did. When it’s there, it’s a giveaway that she is lying.

        2. I should make a point here, that it is well known that many famous and infamous politicians were diagnosed with mental health and addiction issues. I don’t think I need to name them. I have only seen Ms. Smith on television and like anyone read news reports. These do leave me with an uncomfortable feeling. But a feeling is not evidence. I can only hope that I am wrong, and she is merely a rather enraged neo-con, of a certain amount of persuasive charm, which reasonable Albertans will see for what it is on voting day. And in so seeing, will take action to end an unstable and chaotic government by voting for the NDP a recognized set of steady hands, if only to avert a possible calamity .

  2. Good news, bad news. First the good news for all of us is it is likely we won’t have to spend the rest of the time until the election talking about poop cookies. I suppose not so good for the now banished UCP candidate, but on the bright side for her the UCP has had in the past a bit of a revolving door for their MLAs that say or do embarrassing things. So it is quite likely if they win it will be more of a temporary suspension than a permanent banishment. In any event she will know how to vote if she ever wants back in, so practically it will be of no effect.

    The bad news for Smith is the terrible timing of her ethics violation finding Perhaps this is worse than poop cookies. This is just not some obscure kooky candidate. This goes to the heart of the Premiers behavior and all the trust and competence issues that continue to dog her.

    So it may actually not matter who won the debate. I feel it was sort of a draw. Smith is a fairly good performer under pressure, which may be surprising to some that haven’t watched her closely, that is not her weakness. It is what she does and says at other times. Lets not forget the Lake of Fire and her floor crossing were not things that happened in an election TV debate.

    Notley got one thing right, so much of what Smith says and does is exhausting. I am not sure how much more of this the rest of Albertans, or even her own supporters, can take before they say enough. My best guess is we are closer to that point than we realize. The ethics finding may be the tipping point.

    1. That was then. Today Smith said she’ll give the candidate from Alberta’s backside a second chance. Because she needs the seat if her government wins a minority? Kids or power? No bar is too low. When you’re rolling in mud with swine, sling it.

  3. Alberta has reached a point where it doesn’t care anymore.

    It will never bring PMJT to heel.
    It will never see the glories of Skippy Pollivere righting all the imaginary wrongs done to it.
    It will never annex northern BC, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba, assuring a passage to two coastlines.

    Alberta has always had some pretty inflated notions of itself, its people are certainly most easily deluded imaginable. Of course, as the rest of the world moves on, Alberta remains in an echo chamber that reinforces its own sense of importance. But the best part is that Alberta will continue to vote for a party and legislators who have every intentions of forever rage-farming discontent, all the while ripping apart the very fabric of what can be called a somewhat just society.

    Of course, when faced with all the hardships wrought by the UCP’s cadre of psychopaths, Alberta will more than happily blame someone else for all the harm done to them.

    Danielle Smith, on some pretty tenuous grounds, called the Commissioner’s report a win and an exoneration of herself. I suspect that, in revenge, Marguerite Trussler will be removed from office with a UCP win. As for Tyler Shandro, he may be campaigning with even less enthusiasm now.

  4. What a disaster for the NDP. Ms Notley looked unprepared and tongue-tied. She likely failed to move any undecided voters into her column. You simply cannot win a battle of numbers (jobs created or lost, doctors hired or departed) as viewers’ eyeballs start to glaze over. Instead she could have issued an urgent call to “Wake up Albertans” and strongly warned that a vote for the UCP is a vote for a radical, Republican-style agenda. It sure ain’t your grandfolks Conservative Party!

    1. Out: As I said in an earlier post, Ms. Notley’s lawyerly, forensic style is well suited to Parliamentary debate and courtroom argument. It is not effective dealing with a serial liar like Ms. Smith in what is essentially an entertainment format. DJC

  5. I was surprised I didn’t hear Notley defend her own record in the context of a global oil crash that undoubtedly affected her government’s economic record; Smith certainly ran to COVID as an excuse about the deterioration of education in the province. Both were objectively awful storms to weather. But maybe Notley didn’t see making excuses as a winning tactic…?

    If I had to guess at what Notley wishes she’d done better in her term, it would be to talk more with farmers before putting her farm workers health insurance bill out. That was honestly done with the best intentions at providing for farm workers injured on the job (lost limbs are not unheard of), but got massive ‘Berta backlash, in part because of all the “in the family” farm ops; e.g. “why should I have to pay WCB for my cousin Benny, I’ll provide for him if he gets hurt, and I’m insulted that you would insinuate otherwise!”

    Read the writeup in the St. Albert Gazette about the debate between Renaud and Wood. Hard to tell whether the rabble-rousers were UCP or NDP, but I have my suspicions. In response to Wood’s blatant hypocrisy about election promises, though, I would remind her of Kenney signing his giant health care protection agreement and then turning right around and using it in the parliamentary WC…

    1. Riles: I read the St. Albert Gazette’s account and it fits a pattern. The Gazette is better than some community papers and to its credit, it actually pays a few real reporters and has had some very good ones over the years. That said, it is very wary of criticizing politicians and leans toward favouring Conservative politicians and right-wing city councillors. If you were there, as I was, there can be no question that the Wood supporters occupying the front rows were offensive and rude. As for those UCP supporters who have denied that here or elsewhere, I can only assume they were raised by wolves. To put it simply, the Cons cried “Liar!” at Marie Renaud. If her supporters called out at all – a few did – it was to shout things like “It’s true!” As for Ms. Wood’s emailed statement to the Gazette that “she did not find the commentary from the crowd offensive or intimidating,” I will take her at her word. Perhaps she should look in to getting her hearing checked, though. DJC

  6. The only levity of the night was the “Miss Canada” question. In other news, waiting room times for emergency departments dropped yesterday. Zero wait time at Sheldon Chumir? Hallelujah! Don’t expect it to last.

    If Ms. Trussler gets her wish that politicians who face justice for their actions can never be found guilty during the writ period, then wouldn’t she be guilty of interference herself? Justice waits for no one, or it shouldn’t. As they say in modern times, F*** around, find out. As it was, why do we have to wait until after the election to learn the gravity of this offence, i.e., the fine amount?

    My takeaway from the debate was Ms. Smith glibly denying on live television that she had been found guilty. Of course she was found guilty of interference in justice. She broke the law. When a premier of the province stands up in front of the people and distorts the truth with no sign of remorse, what else is she willing to do when she thinks she won’t be caught, laws be damned?

    1. Brad: A straight-up DJC mistake, not a typo. My apologies to all, especially Mr. Coyne, of course. Thanks to you for pointing it out. It’s been fixed. In my own half-hearted defence, I can only say, “He might as well be!” DJC

  7. Alberta has drawn worldwide attention for its continued whining at the world’s concerns for fossil fuel emissions emanating from the oil sands. There appears to be no shame or acceptance of responsibility for polluted water bodies, decimated tracts of wilderness or greenhouse gas emissions. For Albertans it is just the cost of doing business. Although this debate focused on ethical issues I am not convinced that Rachel Notley would commit herself to any course different than Danielle Smith’s milking the cow of fossil fuels for everything she can. It’s not socialists or conservatives that highlight Alberta politics. It is Big Oil and easy money for the province and all facets of social and political philosophy stem from the oil patch. And, like a black hole sucking everything near to their destruction, Alberta’s obsession with its own self-imposed alienation from the rest of Canada will draw other miscreants into its gravitational pull. Neither of these two combatants present a working commitment to seriously decreasing greenhouse gases, habitat loss and toxic pollution of waterways. Neither is good for the planet. It’s the same old, same old Alberta. I escaped the Alberta Advantage twenty years ago. One of the wisest decisions I have made.

    1. Well said Cecil.
      The environmental degradation and the corrupt and criminal petro-industry causing most of it while cheating generations of opportunity and prosperity are perhaps the two most important issues facing voters in this province.
      But not a word is heard.

    2. No politician stands a chance in Alberta without being openly supportive of the province’s signature industry. Imagine running for office in Newfoundland & Labrador on a platform hostile to fishing: that’s how the NDP has been perceived here, especially at the federal level, and the provincial party is being tarred with that same brush.

  8. The moment in the debate epitomizing Ms Smith’s unreliability revolved around the question of the Premier breaking the Conflict of Interest law.

    Ms Smith’s answer was brazen (as noted by Mr Farkas Friday morning on a CBC morning show). She didn’t apologize for breaking the law. No she ignored the finding of law breaking and attacked the NDP and the CBC for, allegedly, reporting incorrectly she had spoken to crown prosecutors about criminal cases. I note she failed to pursue a threatened defamation lawsuit against the CBC.

    In my view she could answered more briefly. She could of said

    Don’t rely on what I said yesterday, Don’t worry about what I will say today, just watch what I will do if I am elected.
    Then my positions will become clear.

  9. I didn’t take notes but I made a few while watching the whole, rather predictable thing.

    “Who won?”—I asked my darling. Too close to tell, she explained, so close that her natural bias for the NDP could not be objectively expunged. My thought was that for any Alberta voter who really needed to decide which leader would make the best premier, it would have to be Rachel Notley. Only problem is, it’s the parties most voters will be voting for or against—probably the former more than the latter.

    I still sense a comparative enthusiasm-deficit for the UCP’s Danielle Smith which I think will favour the NDP—for which I am partial—, the only question being whether it will be enough. By all accounts—at least at present with nine days of campaigning left—the race is so close that that subtle factor might make all the difference, as I sincerely hope: that is, some conservative-minded voters won’t be voting for or against anybody—keeping in mind that it’s much easier to stay at home in a city, Calgary, a cosmopolis where most newcomers settle, being the reputed swing region, than it is in a rural town where everybody knows everybody else. I suppose that notion is tempered by the fact that a lot of those rural ridings don’t really need a big turnout for the UCP candidate to win so, even if one is noticed missing at the voting place, there’s always the excuse that, “hey, I had something more important to do than drive into town to vote for a candidate who’s gonna win anyway.” Like keeping the cattle safe from wildfires now scorching the province.

    Still, there’s a palpable scent of desperation and nastiness on the UCP side, virtue-signalling in this vein virtually mandated by the TBA faction—kinda like a show of hands on the latest contract offer at the union hall (I almost got my lone arm snapped off, one time, voting for an offer which, many weeks later, we eventually accepted—but my comrades were insisting on solidarity, not blind loyalty like the partisan political right increasingly demands these days).

    Ms Notley looked measured and methodical which, in a vague kind of way, Danielle Smith acknowledged when she reminded that she’s not a lawyer (like Rachel Notley is). Smith looked rote. But all’s fair…

    Notley was strategic whereas her rival was more tactical, but that’s not to say she wasn’t also tactical. Indeed, her manoeuvres seemed almost entirely informed by the latest IPSOS polling breakdown by opening her attack with the categories it found her and her party most-behind the UCP: taxes and the economy. She immediately swore a point-blank oath not to raise taxes and to advance Alberta’s economy, employment and investment opportunities, returning to it with deft jabs throughout and effectively, I think, spoiling Smith’s myths (that the NDP was out to destroy the province’s black-gold goose, the Bitumen Mines of Albetaria), and reminding that it was the NDP which got the TMX pipeline deal, none of which Smith counter punched against.

    Notley went on to pepper the debate with references to the categories which IPSOS found the NDP way ahead: healthcare and ethics, drawing figurative blood with the godsend of the Ethics Commissioner’s piping hot condemnation of Smith’s breach: her sympathetic communication with an infamous insurrectionist street-preacher facing charges for his part in the Coutts border blockade. (Speaking of bias, I wondered what could be gleaned from Commissioner Trussler’s footnote that it was unfortunate such a commission was allowed during an election campaign—but it was so subtle I couldn’t tell whichaway it leaned, if it leaned at all: did she disapprove of Smith using the Commissioner’s office for plainly partisan ends or of the brass-knucks she —reluctantly?—effectively threw into the ring which Notley didn’t hesitate to use?)

    Smith was left on the defensive, accusing CBC for lying about inappropriate emails between her and Crown prosecutors — which the MoCo still maintains exist—and would have been found unethical if Trussler didn’t already have enough evidence by way of the persistent preacher. Scolding concurrently served. In tRumpian terms: not an indictment, but not an exoneration, either.

    It remains that if Smith really wanted to challenge the CBC’s reporting in court, she could—even at the CBC’s invitation—so, if she doesn’t, her defensive rhetoric sounds lame and her position suspect. But if Smith were to be judged by lame things she’s said, there is more than enough besides this one item (however inured Albertans are to Smith’s boners, the TBA is getting overtly focused on winning power, not sustaining her leadership). However, with nine days to go, longer than a political “eternity,” I think this portion of the debate will be significant in the bigger picture—and I think Notley sees this picture more clearly.

    Thus, in my view, Notley set up the rest of the campaign with the cool deftness one expects from a lawyer working purposefully towards her closing argument. Indeed, that’s a distinction her opponent admitted —foolishly, IMHO, since playing the victim card (for which she is already distinguished) resonates with her base, but probably not with the other two-thirds of the electorate.

    Yes, Smith’s handlers probably breathed a sigh of relief that she didn’t go bozo this time, but I bet none of Notley’s team had the same worry—even if some of us out here in the peanut gallery do worry that the Dipper campaign isn’t aggressive enough, and that, for example, Notley didn’t sufficiently deke and head-fake looking for an opening or try too hard to goad Smith into an intemperate remark. But neither did she practice the Taoist art of wu wei, or ‘doing by not doing.’ I think we saw Rachel reminding Danielle just what she’s in for and, if a gotcha is in the cards, it won’t be played by Notley, only countered—say, a week or so—, classically when there’s too little time left on the clock for Smith to correct or “clarify” any misspeaks or “misinterpretations.”

    Ten more days until the Big Day and it’s oh-so-close! But a small thing can tip the scale so evenly balanced, a strategic matter for Notley, but a tactical danger for Smith because if Notley remains as methodical as she’s been, she’ll keep leading with rejoinders to IPSOS-identified NDP weaknesses but following with unrelenting combos on the pollster’s identified NDP strengths— healthcare and ethical government—that last item tactfully held in reserve, the hardest blows landing near the bell, at which point Smith is bruised and tired and just might let a zinger go. It’s a contingency, at least, the only breach we want to catch Danielle in.

    While I do agree with DJC’s observation that the UCP is now “Lake of Fire-Proof,” I suspect the NDP will be ready to make the best of whatever number of spoons might poop out. I’m satisfied Notley showed she’s not afraid to counterpunch whatever Smith has to throw at her, but as we saw last night the Dipper is winning such engagements on points and, hopefully, on important issues like healthcare, on facts. Solid, gradually turning up the heat but not yet breaking a sweat like the UCP, and ready to provide the tactical flurry if it’s needed—which I suspect will happen as the more-nearful gets more fearful. (Infuriated frustration is already the UCP’s most damaging tell.)

    In short, Rachel got in her shots, parried well against Smith’s, and stung her with her strongest punches. But more importantly, Rachel didn’t appear to shoot her wad—meaning she has plenty left and doesn’t look like she’ll waste waste energy swinging and missing like, I would say, Danielle did and will probably keep doing as the final rounds tick by.

    My darling’s first take was simply that Notley opened with best thoughts and prayers for Alberta’s firefighters in this trying time while Smith saved it for a perfunctorily mumbled and maudlin closing statement. Considering the wildfires will still be raging for a while yet, one might appreciate the strategic security with which Notley views the remaining days: she cannot be faulted for her own leadership during the Fort Mac fire and doesn’t have to criticize Smith for hers, this time. For my darling, that little point said it all.

  10. It is astonishing to me that the race is so close with everything we know about Danielle Smith.
    No one should believe that Danielle Smith has changed her views all of a sudden just before the vote. Danielle Smith is who she is and who she has been all of her political and public life. They say when people show you who they are, believe them the first time.

    My only hope right now is seeing so many more NDP signs in places I have not seen them before, even in Edmonton which is considered NDP stronghold.

  11. Growing up in Calgary’s Riverside district in the late 50’s, one of the worst insults accompanied by a sneering voice and a disgusted look was “You lie like a sidewalk.” Today, it would be “You lie like a UCP Premier.”

  12. I saw the provincial election debate. Danielle Smith was able to cram in so many lies in that it was hard to count how many lies she uttered. It’s amazing how people fall for these lies, like they fell for the lies of Ralph Klein. Postmedia columnists, such as Licia Corbella, Lorne Gunter, Jack Mintz and David Staples, continue to defend these pretend conservatives and Reformers. They cheat us out of our oil wealth, and corporate tax wealth, that Peter Lougheed gave us, costing us hundreds of billions of dollars, do very pricey shenanigans, which cost us so much money, do very bad cuts to our public education and public healthcare systems in Alberta, so they can get it privatized, increase costs of utilities and insurance, destroy the environment, and increase poverty and crime levels. Anyone that exposes these lies, gets called nasty names. The newspapers that publish these columnists’ articles, will never publish letters to the editor that counter their lies. This is very bad.

  13. Laugh, yes what a coincidence. That and notleys worst time is when she started talking. Who knew it would be so hard to sell authoritarianism without total control of the press.

    1. @Bret Larson
      While you are in such a jovial mood, perhaps you would like to expound on how easy it will be for Smith to sell libertarian authoritarianism with the help of a compliant provincial police force?

      I would imagine that the enemy list Smith has compiled is every bit as long as the ones kept by Jason Kenney or Stephen Harper.

      Just think of all the well paid war-room and politicial operative positions she will be looking to fill should she manage to win her own seat.

      1. Libertarian authoritarianism? Libertarians believe the source of human compassion is from people, not big government. Kinda hard to be authoritarian when everyone is making the decision what to do with their labour for themselves.

        1. Mutual aid is an anarchist principle friend. Libertarians just hate paying taxes. Do not conflate the two.

    2. Authoritarianism, right. Hmm I thought the UCP actually passed a law criminalizing protest on “critical infrastructure” oh right they did.

      You’re a clown, and always on time with the clowning. Have you ever thought of moving to the USA ? It’s going super great down there rn.

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