Friday, October 08, 2004

Jeebus we're spending a lot of time on the Byfields lately...

...but they're just so darn poke-fun-at-able. Here's Byfield pere:

Sun, October 3, 2004
Albertans must prepare for the storm
By Ted Byfield -- Calgary Sun

Possibly the most significant date in the history of Alberta will fall within a year after Nov. 22. That's the date of the provincial election.

Some time after that, the Martin government will announce the New National Energy Program, the purpose of which will be to commandeer Alberta's natural resource revenues and convey them to Eastern Canada generally and to Quebec in particular.

This is not a possibility.

I think we should consider it a dead certainty.

Yup, the jack-booted thugs of the Eastern Commissars will come into your house, smash your kid's piggy-bank, and cart the proceeds back to Ontario and Quebec, laughing like fiends all the while. IT'S GOING TO HAPPEN PEOPLE!!! AND SOON!!! LOCK UP YOUR DAUGHTERS!!! But don't panic, Ted is here to tell you what to do.

I also believe it imposes on every Albertan a single decision.

When the Martin government proposes this, will we vote to separate from Canada?

Um, I'm going to put the rent money down on "No" for that one, Ted. Sorry 'bout that.

All this sounds like dire alarmism, I know, but consider the circumstances.

First the economic ones: Oil has hit $50 a barrel and is altogether likely to keep on going up.

That confers enormous economic advantage on this province.

And, in Ted's Alberta, we take that enormous economic advantage and sit on top of it, glaring hatefully at the neighbours all the while.

It will funnel billions more into the oil sands, and make Alberta the economic engine of the whole country.

Last week, we saw Imperial Oil announce it was finally moving its head office into Alberta, where it should have been all along.

This is only a beginning.

Money, jobs, technology, all these things and many more will begin gravitating into the province.

So far so good. This is supposed to provoke us to separate?

Now consider the political circumstances:

The minority Martin government almost certainly must face an election within two years, and it can call one any time it pleases.

To gain a majority, it must win more seats in Quebec and Ontario. The surefire means to gain support down there is to promise a major raid on "the Rich Oil Barons," meaning us.

It's a formula that has never failed. It is bound to happen.

Ok, that probably wins the 2004 award for "Most Concentrated Bullshit in a Newspaper Column." C'mon down, Ted!! Anyway, the "formula" has never failed because it's never been tried. Winning more seats in Quebec and Ontario (and the West) is going to be better achieved by supporting the frickin' municipalities anyway.

It is also a double-edged sword because it will cause a devastating split in the Tories.

Their Alberta and Western wing will go one way and their Ontario and Eastern wing will go another.

So we will have a single-issue federal election.

Do you want a government that is prepared to "stand for the interests of all Canada," or one that will "serve only the interests of a single, already very rich province?"

The Liberals will go back with a landslide.

The Alberta boom will come to an abrupt end.

Because every time the Liberals get into power, Alberta gets automatically screwed. Oh wait, what's the opposite of getting screwed? Right, that's what happens.

Anyway, the rest of the article is basically concerned with the timing of the descent of the Liberal hordes on Alberta, and whether they'll get here before the Queen does. And whether that will provoke loony people to try to hijack the provincial Conservative Party leadership. I mean, it's not like that's happening already... Or like it's never happened in the past... However, Ted does close off with a piece of good advice:

The answer is that we can think out the issue -- not angrily but coolly, not emotionally but rationally.


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