David J. Climenhaga (Photo: Olav Rokne).

David J. Climenhaga is a journalist and commentator who has worked as a staff reporter and editor for the Globe and Mail and Calgary Herald, and whose work has appeared in many other publications. He lives in Alberta. Most Alberta Politics posts are also published on the national publication, rabble.ca, where the blog has been hosted as “Alberta Diary” since 2010. In addition, some posts are published with permission by TheTyee.ca.

Contact: [email protected]

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  1. Chris: I will mention this to my web designer. If I have found anything with WordPress, it’s that whenever you switch themes, you lose things you liked and get things you’re not crazy about and somehow didn’t expect when you looked at the mockups. They can’t always be fixed without just adopting a new look holus-bolus. On the whole, I think this is a big improvement visually. The newspapery appearance appeals to me, given my history. I will try to tweak it to keep readers happy. That said, the main reasons driving the need for change were technical in the back end of the site. The old theme was getting long in the tooth and some bits had stopped working properly. It should also be possible to build in the capability for more, and more sophisticated, advertisements with this theme. I’m not crazy about running ads, but there are expenses associated with running a blog like this, but I prefer that to constantly bombarding my readers with pleas for money like certain right-wing vloggers. DJC

    1. I want to echo commenter Chris that I too checked back regularly to look at the number of comments – much more convenient when I can see this for all recent stories at a glance. I hope that your designer is able to fix this.

      Above all, thanks for doing this site. As someone who spent a total of 4 years in AB back in the ’70s and ’80s, I really appreciate your grounded, sensible perspective on a place which has had a certain grim fascination for me ever since. I have fond memories of meeting Grant Notley when I belonged to the NDP club at U of A in the late ’70s, so the bizarre petro-transformation of his daughter has been quite a sad spectacle to watch.

      1. I am happy to report that my web designer expects to be able to fix this. The number of comments will appear next to the Facebook and Twitter logos at the column’s top right, if all goes according to plan. DJC

  2. I think this actually has to do with the size you have set your browser at on your page. DJC

  3. John: My goal with this blog is to write entertaining stories and to write stories that are not told elsewhere, both from a progressive perspective. Brian Topp’s recent draft Policy Magazine story published on social media and ignored by mainstream media was an example that I think was important, even though I share many of Andy Marshall’s concerns about the state of the NDP right now. Bitterness from the Wildrose rump in the UCP may eventually create problems for Jason Kenney, but I believe most Alberta conservatives will stick with him regardless of almost anything in the immediate future, which spells a difficult 2019 for the NDP. So while there is the opportunity in this story to mock Mr. Kenney for his obvious hypocrisy, I am not persuaded the resignation of 17 constituency association officials in Calgary-Falconridge is that significant in the great scheme of things. Anyway, there’s only so much time. I basically write this blog myself, and I can’t cover every story out there. Neither can Postmedia, apparently, with considerably more reporters and columnists. We are ill served by our media, especially Postmedia, but I can’t make up for it all by myself! DJC

    1. Thanks for the detailed reply..appreciate it.

      Your thoughts on media in general and Postmedia are on the money…I have run across exactly one story on this in my travels through my dozen + sites I peruse.


  4. Look here sensei! We go nothin’ to lose now! Open your site, let it all hang out! Find a last 15$ person to meet your criteria and post! Then post them on every american website! “The Kanasasing of Alberta”! The fucking of our friends! Get the fuck on it!

  5. I went to enable notifications in WordPress (so I get your posts hot off the press) but I don’t have a “settings” link as I do for other blogs I follow, eg. :

    Alberta Politics
    David Climenhaga’s Alberta Politics Blog
    updated 6 days ago


    Math with Bad Drawings
    Lover of math. Bad at drawing.
    updated 4 days ago


  6. Motoring throughout Canada with high beam headlights or oversized rearview mirror only, offers one special status and benefits nationally.

  7. The Honourable Rick Wilson
    Minister of Indigenous Relations

    Mr. Jason Luan
    Associate Minister of Mental Health and Addictions

    Mr. Prasad Panda
    Minister of Infrastructure

    January 27, 2020

    Dear Sirs:

    URGENT: Nechi Institute: Centre of Indigenous Learning

    Further to our initial meeting of March 15, 2020 and the abrupt cancelation of the follow-up meeting, I am urgently requesting you re-schedule a meeting between your government and Nechi Institute at the earliest available date. As we are all aware, Nechi Institute is in a provincially provoked state of crisis, with only 47 business days to find a new home by April 1, 2020 with no suitable locations to re-establish our critically required services.

    On January 22, Press Secretary Ted Bauer told me that Nechi should not rely on the Province to bail us out of this crisis. I found that to be very troubling, considering we are in this crisis solely because of the unilateral commitment the Province made to Poundmaker’s Lodge, which resulted in Nechi being evicted.

    The actions of the Province have put both a financial burden and logistical nightmare squarely on Nechi and ironically have jeopardized our ongoing negotiations, commitments and relationships with First Nations who are desperately seeking avenues in which to address the escalating opioid crisis in their communities.

    We expect the Province to be accountable for its actions by assisting us to address the geographical conundrum they have facilitated. As we are all aware, First Nation members are dying from addictions we cannot afford to delay healing and securing facilities for Nechi to continue its work is paramount in terms of providing required treatment and support services to ones in critical need.

    Please see attached copy of the letter sent dated January 23, 2020 which summarizes the discussions held on January 15, 2020 at the Legislature Building and includes a proposed agenda for the scheduled January 29, 2020 meeting, which was cancelled due to Associate Minister Jason Luan being out of the country and the province requiring more time to brief the Minister upon his return to Canada.

    While we do not believe there was any conscious desire on the part of any provincial official to harm Nechi Institute, our organization considers its present situation to be the direct result of decisions made by the Province for reasons addressed in earlier correspondence and during the January 15 meeting. Accordingly, we expect that the Province will honour the Ministers’ commitments to assist us to address both immediate and longer-term needs for adequate and appropriate space for our staff, students and community.

    It is thus urgent that we schedule our next meeting as quickly as possible. Please feel free to contact C.E.O. Ms. Marilyn Buffalo at 780-221-3887 or by email at [email protected] or myself at 613-832-4983 or [email protected].

    I look forward to an expedient resolution to the crisis we find ourselves in. Your immediate attention to this matter is extremely critical not only for the future of Nechi Institute but for a complete and co-ordinated response to the opioid and other addictions crises. What impacts the First Nations populations carry reverberating positive or negative affects into the greater Alberta population.

    Your government promotes “reconciliation” at every opportunity so your timely response and future actions will demonstrate your sincerity in your public platitudes.


    Angelina Pratt
    Chair, Board of Governors

    cc. Alberta First Nation Chiefs

  8. Hey
    On my FB feed there is some nasty business about Shandro (and his wife??) pushing their private Telehealth company…is there any truth to this? Or conflict of interest??

  9. Someone should look into the cost of current orthopaedic surgeries now. Ortho docs don’t want to deal with medical issues- they only want to operate. So they have bullied Alta health for about 15 years about going on strike, or not doing more to reduce waiting lists etc to get a side deal to have AHS pay for GPs to do the ward management. The fee codes for GPs in hospital is shite, so no-one would do it at first, so they sweetened it: to the tune of $150 per hour stipend, plus the GP bills for consults. This is on top of the Ortho codes including a bill “bundle” that gives them money for 2 weeks of post-op care. Now, AHS is going to put a stop to it, and voila, we have another sweet deal with the private business. Totally shady. Totally greedy. Thanks.

  10. RE: How propaganda became memory

    David, thank you for the reminder of the actual history of the National Energy Program (aka NEP). I still meet people on a regular basis in the province the hate the NEP, and therefore, disparage anything and everything the federal government does. The people to which I refer were all adults in 1980. When asked what was wrong with the NEP, the only reply I get is that it was bad and it hurt the economy. Many still do not know anything about the program. Hence, the title of your article is spot on.

    I also recall more resent history, like former premier Peter Lougheed’s interview with Calgary Herald in September, 2006. In that interview he said the then, soon to retire, Ralph Klein has made a mess of the economy and got nothing for Alberta oil. Shortly after that interview, weeks if memory serves, he admitted that he was responsible for writing the section on Canadian oil exports in the 1989 Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement, and that in hindsight a bad deal for the Alberta oil & gas sector.

    I wonder who Alberta Tories are going to blame for global warming and the stranded oil & gas assets. Will we see a return of the Act of Contrition bumper stickers from the 1990’s?

  11. Your story is full of crap. You are outright lying. Why not do a true research on a story before you just assume you got it right. Shame on you.

  12. Kudos on the website upgrade! I love your work and enjoy the comments from your many well-spoken and thoughtful readers! I was glad to find your “Support Us” button – it helped me sign up for a monthly contribution. Thank you for your excellent work.

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