Wexit

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robbie_dee
Wexit

CTV: "'Marching towards separation': Wexit Alberta applies to become registered party" (November 4, 2019)

Quote:

Peter Downing told CTV’s Your Morning that Wexit Alberta had taken the first steps to becoming a federal party and filed paperwork with Elections Canada.

“We’re sending in over 500 signatures, over double the required 250 signatures,” said the founder. “We’re going to do for Western Canada what the Bloc Quebecois does for Quebec.”

Wexit, a portmanteau of “western and exit,” is a western separatist movement that has appeared to be gaining momentum since Justin Trudeau’s Liberals won the 43rd federal election. About 700 people reportedly attended a rally in Edmonton over the weekend where Downing and others were seen wearing blue “Make Alberta Great Again” hats, a nod to U.S. President Donald Trump’s successful 2016 campaign slogan. A Facebook page for the group created in June has more than 30,700 likes.

Downing penned an open letter to Alberta Premier Jason Kenney asking for a referendum on separation, which Kenney has said he does not support.

“He’s got the opportunity to be the first Prime Minister of Alberta, absolutely. Be a hero. Lead us to the door to our economic liberty, our social stability and our self-determination,” said Downing. “The door is locked from the inside and he has the opportunity to open it for us.”

Downing said Wexit Alberta has three key aims: the unification of western Canadian provinces, elect members of parliament to legislate issues the directly impact the west, and to “bring Western Canadian nations to national forefront.”

voice of the damned

Like the early 80s version of "western" separatism, they are delusional in thinking that they can assemble a united-front of provinces willing to join them. Even if Saskatchewan is now on board as a result of becoming an oil bastion, BC and especially its west coast are never going to agree to the idea, and the only issue these wexiteers really care about is getting a pipeline to the Pacific.

And, I'm sorry, but you'd have to be completely oblivious to the news to think that evoking Brexit in your name and Trump on your hats is going to be a vote-getter at this point. Downing might as well just pose for a photo of himself stockpiling food with an autographed photo of Putin on the wall.

All that said, Kenney might try to do what Lougheed did in his day, and use these guys as an implied ultimatum against Ottawa. "Do what I want, or you'll be dealing with the Wexit Party after the next election!" For some reason, though, I don't see Trudeau falling for it.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Great idea maybe Albertan voters are stupid enough that half of the Conservatives voters will vote for these idiots. This is not a Western thing it is a flat lander thing. Flatlanders who also probably believe in a flat earth.

Unionist

If Alberta separates from Canada, I see only three possible geographic directions: 1) South; 2) Up; 3) Straight down.

Anyone know which direction they're favouring?

Asking for a friend.

bekayne

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Great idea maybe Albertan voters are stupid enough that half of the Conservatives voters will vote for these idiots. This is not a Western thing it is a flat lander thing. Flatlanders who also probably believe in a flat earth.

Just Alberta and Saskatchewan so...

https://twitter.com/hashtag/assexit

 

Sean in Ottawa

bekayne wrote:

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Great idea maybe Albertan voters are stupid enough that half of the Conservatives voters will vote for these idiots. This is not a Western thing it is a flat lander thing. Flatlanders who also probably believe in a flat earth.

Just Alberta and Saskatchewan so...

https://twitter.com/hashtag/assexit

 

ha!

bekayne
Misfit Misfit's picture

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Great idea maybe Albertan voters are stupid enough that half of the Conservatives voters will vote for these idiots. This is not a Western thing it is a flat lander thing. Flatlanders who also probably believe in a flat earth.

Isn't it? You BCer's just can't watch your dog run away for 40 miles. You're just not as enlightened as we are here.

Misfit Misfit's picture

In the late 70s and early 80s the western separation movement was called Western Canada Concept. WCC wanted western Canada to join the United States. It fizzled out with little support.

The Reform party took hold but eventually fizzled out.

I expect the same thing to happen with this. They might get stronger initial support than WCC did but not enough to sustain a strong movement.

Misfit Misfit's picture

And you people can keep Diane Francis.

voice of the damned

Misfit wrote:

In the late 70s and early 80s the western separation movement was called Western Canada Concept. WCC wanted western Canada to join the United States. It fizzled out with little support.

The Reform party took hold but eventually fizzled out.

I expect the same thing to happen with this. They might get stronger initial support than WCC did but not enough to sustain a strong movement.

FWIW, apart from one seat in an Alberta provincial byelection(lost in the next general), the only place where a right-wing separatist party has won anything in Canada was New Brunswick, where the COR took eight seats(and official opposition status) in 1991.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

voice of the damned wrote:

Misfit wrote:

In the late 70s and early 80s the western separation movement was called Western Canada Concept. WCC wanted western Canada to join the United States. It fizzled out with little support.

The Reform party took hold but eventually fizzled out.

I expect the same thing to happen with this. They might get stronger initial support than WCC did but not enough to sustain a strong movement.

FWIW, apart from one seat in an Alberta provincial byelection(lost in the next general), the only place where a right-wing separatist party has won anything in Canada was New Brunswick, where the COR took eight seats(and official opposition status) in 1991.

Not quite.

In 1867 in Nova Scotia, Anti-Confederates won 36 out of 38 seats in the provincial legislature, and formed a government under William Annand (See 24th General Assembly of Nova Scotia). The Anti-Confederation Party was opposed by the Confederation Party of Charles Tupper. Prominent Anti-confederates included the noted shipbuilder William D. Lawrence, Alfred William Savary and the wealthy merchant Enos Collins.

Federally, in the 1867 federal election, the Anti-Confederate party won 18 of Nova Scotia's 19 seats in the House of Commons of Canada. Howe won the federal seat in Hants County, Nova Scotia, while William D. Lawrence won the Hants County provincial seat. Britain, however, refused to allow Nova Scotia to secede.

While many anti-confederationists threatened to secede and join the United States, Howe was a pragmatist and ultimately accepted Confederation as a fact. He was soon persuaded to join the Cabinet of Sir John A. Macdonald, leading to the movement's collapse (1869).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-Confederation_Party

Misfit Misfit's picture

Dick Collver was the leader of the Saskatchewan Progressive Conservative party in the 1970s. He was the Leader of the Opposition in Saskatchewan for two terms and then stepped down. Grant Devine took over the party. 

Dick Collver then formed the Unionist Party in Saskatchewan which advocated western Canadian provinces seaparting from Canada and joining the United States. When that idea fizzled, he moved to the United States.

Dick Collver bio,,,

I always wondered what would have happened if he had won election as PC leader and been our premier.

voice of the damned

Misfit wrote:

I always wondered what would have happened if he had won election as PC leader and been our premier.

Well, it's not likely that his views were held by many other people in Saskatchewan, even among Conservatives. So, assuming he holds those opinions in an alternate time-line where he becomes premier, he might suggest the idea to cabinet, get a lot of uncomfortable stares, and then just give up on it.

There is the story(hard to verify on-line, but I know I've seen it in reputable analog sources) about Romanow and Klein at a premier's meeting somewhere, and Romanow brought up the perceived neccesity, in the event of Quebec separation, of the other provinces finding their own options, and mentioned separation as a possibility. Klein allegedly shot back "That's treason", and that was the end of the discussion.

But even in that case, Romanow was talking about a hypothetical where Quebec has left Confederation, not tub-thumping for western independence as a good unto itself.

voice of the damned

And thanks for the info on Collver. Never heard of him before.

Misfit Misfit's picture

Saskatchewan separation and Romano

CBC

voice of the damned

Misfit wrote:

Saskatchewan separation and Romano

CBC

Thanks. I knew I had read about that somewhere.

bekayne

voice of the damned wrote:

And thanks for the info on Collver. Never heard of him before.

He was known as "the Nixon of the Prairies"

Sean in Ottawa

Kropotkin's point that if half of the Conservatives vote for Wexit being a good thing is worth a second, third and fourth thought. Imagine how many places we would see neither win with a vote nicely split like that.

voice of the damned

bekayne wrote:

voice of the damned wrote:

And thanks for the info on Collver. Never heard of him before.

He was known as "the Nixon of the Prairies"

What was the basis for the comparison?

 

bekayne

voice of the damned wrote:

bekayne wrote:

voice of the damned wrote:

And thanks for the info on Collver. Never heard of him before.

He was known as "the Nixon of the Prairies"

What was the basis for the comparison?

 

Apparently he was plauged with lawsuits from his business dealings. There's also the way he became Leader of the Opposition, partly by poaching MLAs from the Liberals (one of them being Colin Thatcher). And he was pretty right wing.

voice of the damned

Thanks. Richard Nixon is a particular age-bracket's idea of a crooked politician, so I can understand that Saskatchewanites might have used him as the gold-standard(pardon the inadvertant economics joke) for that sort of thing. Though none of his famous scandals involved personal business-dealings, as far as I know. Even Checkers was a campaign-finance issue.

Tangential, but the only non-premier, non-expense scandal, non-wife killing Saskatchewan Conservative I can remember is some woman who was associated with Christian conservatives, and got a name for herself mouthing off against feminists, gays, and the NDP, in the late 1980s I believe. Alberta Report magazine had at least one front-page article talking her up as some sort of Next Big Thing, but as I recall, her time in the spotlight didn't last long.

If anyone can remember this woman's name, I'd be grateful for the reminder.

voice of the damned

I believe Gay Caswell is the woman I was thinking of. Apparently, she was involved in a lawsuit over blog postings a while back, and has also converted from Pentecostalism to Catholicism.

Assuming she still holds to the same social views she did back in the 1980s, I don't think she'd be very happy with some of the images that come up when you do a duckduckgo on her name.

 

Misfit Misfit's picture

Dick Collver was hired on as a property and business manager for the Baltzan's, a family of doctors and investors in Saskatchewan in the 1970s. He got into a serious legal dispute with them. Collver claimed that they transferred land into his name. The Baltzan's didn't see it that way.

...Dick Collver also got into a lawsuit with Saskatchewan Government Insurance Office, a Saskatchewan crown corporation. Dick Collver signed a $1 million loan guarantee for a construction company that went into insolvency before the development project was completed. Dick Collver refused to honour the loan guarantee.

This is taken from Saskatchewan Premiers of the Twentieth Century. Regina Press. Edited by Gordon Bamhart. Pp. 302-304.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Alberta ‘Wexit’ Group Says It Wants to Roll Back Womens’ Legal Rights and Outlaw ‘Racial Agitation’

The right-wing Alberta separatist group that has enjoyed extensive media coverage following last month’s federal election is also pushing a range of policies that would turn the courts against racialized groups and women.

“Wexit Alberta” saw its Facebook group swell to a quarter-million followers thanks to free publicity from Jason Kenney’s allies, Calgary radio host Danielle Smith and other media organizations who have portrayed the group as a symbol of ordinary Albertans frustrated by the October 21 election results.

Thanks to the largely uncritical publicity, the Facebook group is now saying it will file papers with Elections Canada to become a registered political party.

But an independent Republic of Alberta isn’t the only goal Wexit Alberta has in mind — a closer look at the group’s literature suggests they also hope to entrench the status of Albertans along race and gender lines.....

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

In addition to cracking down on “racial agitation,” the new Republic of Alberta would also seemingly take aim at fly-in fly-out oil field workers from places like Newfoundland and the Maritimes.

The platform suggests using the powers of government to maintain a “100% Alberta resident work-force.”

I wonder if workers will be able to visit their weekend places in BC. If they all had to sell at once it would really help to lower the market that has been inflated by outside money from places like Alberta buying into our provincial real estate market.

Aristotleded24

Why are we giving this supposed movement any more attention than it deserves?

Quote:

This is because utopian idealists with a highly ideological bent are, to be blunt, the sort of people most likely to do violence in the service of their cause.

Moreover, without unique cultural factors such as a language to protect, such causes are likely to attract no one but members of the ideological fringe they inhabit. And the less likely they are to succeed, the greater their frustration with normal democratic politics is bound to be.

This problem is made more severe by the particular variety of ideologues this fringe group has drawn to its ranks. Consider the rhetoric associated with some of Wexit’s leaders and it’s clear what kind of ideology they espouse.

...

How about taking a serious look at the number of supporters this “movement” actually has instead of just accepting organizers’ claims. Most media reported there were 750 people at the Edmonton hootenanny bar. Photos on social media looked like there were about 300 mostly elderly Wexitopians in attendance. The bar has a legal occupancy limit of 479. Media has also credulously repeated claims the group has 32,000 Facebook followers and 260,000 supporters throughout Alberta — both of which are presumably true only if you count Russian bots.

Since media loves polls so much, how about commissioning one that asks some of the tough what-if questions about Alberta separation? Still on board if you have to give up your Canadian passport? What if you lose the protection of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms? What if the trade deal you think will be so easy to negotiate with the United States turns out to be hard?

And what if your Canada Pension Plan is replaced by a pension run by the same clowns who pissed away the Alberta Heritage Savings Trust Fund? You’d think that last question might ring a bell with a lot of participants in Saturday’s hootenanny in Edmonton!

laine lowe laine lowe's picture

In addition to cracking down on “racial agitation,” the new Republic of Alberta would also seemingly take aim at fly-in fly-out oil field workers from places like Newfoundland and the Maritimes.

Does this mean they will also renege on benefit agreements and partnerships with First Nations, on whose land their resources lie?

josh

But don’t tell the rest of Canada that it doesn’t understand the pain of seeing an industry that was its economic bedrock crumble beneath it. Don’t try to explain to people in places like Oshawa, Ont., where the auto assembly plant is closing, or Shawinigan, Que., where the paper mill was shuttered, or Bonavista, N.L., where the cod disappeared and took a quarter of the town with it, what it’s like to have your livelihood threatened by the unstoppable march of change. They know.

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/business/commentary/article-a-note-to-brad-wall-the-rest-of-canada-understands-tough-economic/

NDPP

Jason Kenney is moving fast to effectively subsume, appropriate and exploit the Wexit impulse to full effect and political advantage.

 

What It Would Mean For Pensioners if Kenney Creates An Alberta Pension Plan

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgary/pension-plan-aimco-kenney-alberta...

"Pension funds would likely be transferred to government-owned AIMCo."

 

Preston Manning Turns Up Again on Alberta's  Sovereignty-Association Panel

https://buff.ly/2qF32kf

"Preston Manning is the bad penny of Canadian politics. So no one should be surprised he's turned up again..."

robbie_dee

NDPP wrote:

Jason Kenney is moving fast to effectively subsume, appropriate and exploit the Wexit impulse to full effect and political advantage.

Sure looks like it, but will this bury his chances of supplanting Scheer for the federal Conservative leadership in the next few years? Alberta separatism doesn't play particularly well in the Ontario suburbs the Cons probably need to win. Unless he is going to make a play for the Bloc vote on a "Confederation of Regions" platform instead?

voice of the damned

robbie wrote:

Unless he is going to make a play for the Bloc vote on a "Confederation of Regions" platform instead?

I think things would have to change radically in Canada for Kenney to be sellable in Quebec, even if the province was in the mood for another Beau Risque. Not that I doubt that, at some point in the future, another Conserative leader, maybe with a more moderate image and deeper ties to Quebec, might be able to do that.

The impression I get of Kenney is that he's pretty happy as premier of Alberta for the foreseeable future, and as you say, this quasi-separatist tantrum he's on isn't gonna win a lot of friends elsewhere in the country. 

 

voice of the damned

NDPP wrote:

Jason Kenney is moving fast to effectively subsume, appropriate and exploit the Wexit impulse to full effect and political advantage.

I'm not sure he's having to do much subsming, appropriation, or exploitation here. I think Wexit was always going to end up heading straight into the hands of the establishment Right. It's not like it was ever on any other course from which it could be diverted.  

NDPP

Theoretically in the case of an authentic grass-roots phenomenon seeking a genuine self-determination, it would be that movement that had carriage and influence to effect or shape a governmental response. If that is in fact not the case and this is simply a top down shake and bake lobby to advance the agenda of Jason Kenney et al then none of that applies obviously.