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Alberta Diary

David Climenhaga, author of the Alberta Diary blog, is a journalist, author, journalism teacher, poet and trade union communicator who has worked in senior writing and editing positions with the Toronto Globe and Mail and the Calgary Herald. His 1995 book, A Poke in the Public Eye, explores the relationships among Canadian journalists, public relations people and politicians. He left journalism after the strike at the Calgary Herald in 1999 and 2000 to work for the trade union movement. Alberta Diary focuses on Alberta politics and social issues.

Blog - Alberta Diary February 12
Social conservative activist and lawyer John Carpay before the doors of a courthouse. Photo: Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms
David J. Climenhaga | Will Jason Kenney stand by stand by John Carpay after he publicly stood by his inflammatory comparison of the Nazi swastika flag and Communist hammer and sickle banner to the rainbow Pride flag?
Blog - Alberta Diary February 9
Alberta Party Leader Stephen Mandel in a typical recent pose
David J. Climenhaga | The former Edmonton mayor and Progressive Conservative Party cabinet minister appears not to have filed his post-vote financial accounting paperwork in a sufficiently timely fashion.
Blog - Alberta Diary February 8
Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland
David J. Climenhaga | It's just a matter of supply and demand. A big increase in supply, conveniently located for inexpensive ocean transfer, will depress the price fetched by Alberta oil.
Blog - Alberta Diary February 7
Former Alberta deputy premier and minister of employment and immigration Thomas Lukaszuk (Photo: David J. Climenhaga).
David J. Climenhaga | The investigation centers on allegations by Amandeep Singh Panesar, a former temporary foreign worker, about labour abuses by Devinder Toor, the UCP candidate in the Calgary-Falconridge riding.
Blog - Alberta Diary February 6
The late Jim Prentice's official portrait as it was unveiled in the Alberta Legislature (Photo: Chris Schwartz, Government of Alberta).
David J. Climenhaga | Portrait of Jim Prentice by B.C. artist David Goatley is a more worthy contribution to the collection than several of the recent additions.
Blog - Alberta Diary February 5
David J. Climenhaga | It seems young politicians, no matter how serious, are publicly attacked for their youth -- unless they happen to be conservatives, in which case no shirt's too young to stuff.
Blog - Alberta Diary February 4
Part of the crowd at yesterday Bighorn Park open house in Edmonton (Photo: David J. Climenhaga).
David J. Climenhaga | Everything seemed copacetic at the Bighorn Wildland Provincial Park proposal open house in Edmonton on Saturday.
Blog - Alberta Diary February 1
Dr. Trevor Harrison, director of the Parkland Institute and co-author of Alberta in Context, Health Care Under NDP Governments (Photo: David J. Climenhaga).
David J. Climenhaga | The facts don't support the myth New Democratic Party governments always try to break the bank with health-care spending.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 31
Supreme Court of Canada. Photo: Michael Muraz/Flickr
David J. Climenhaga | Stand by for a veritable tempest of wailing about "activist judges" from banking, oil industry and conservative quarters in response to this morning's ruling by the Supreme Court.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 30
The Supreme Court of Canada building in Ottawa (Photo: David J. Climenhaga).
David J. Climenhaga | Alberta courts have ruled that banks come first and polluters can't be forced to clean up their messes if they go broke. We'll learn the Supreme Court's take on this tomorrow.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 29
Woman using a smartphone. Photo: Marco Verch/Flickr
David J. Climenhaga | A Medicine Hat preacher doesn't seem to have appreciated the online attention his sermon attracted Sunday -- thanks to an ill-advised tweet by an inattentive UCP candidate in a pew.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 28
Alberta Justice Minister Kathleen Ganley (Photo: David J. Climenhaga).
David J. Climenhaga | Alberta's Elections Commissioner is concerned someone is trying to interfere with his investigation into irregularities in the 2017 United Conservative Party leadership race.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 28
The original Al Rashid Mosque, which opened in 1938, is now located in Fort Edmonton Park. Photo: David J. Climenhaga.
David J. Climenhaga | UCP Leader Jason Kenney's tweets were well meaning, but the dog-whistling habit is apparently hard to break.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 25
Jason Kenney. Photo: Michał Józefaciuk/Wikimedia Commons
David J. Climenhaga | Whether UCP leader Jason Kenney likes it or not, this story now has legs. Plus, developments are unlikely to be timed to suit his campaign schedule.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 24
Jason Kenney in 2011. Photo: FAQMP Ichannel/Flickr
David J. Climenhaga | Public anger at politicians who bill taxpayers for their living expenses when in reality they live close to their work is nothing new in Alberta. Abusive attacks on their critics are new.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 23
Presumed law-abiding gun owners shop at a gun show in Texas, where no records of sales are kept (Photo: M&R Glasgow, Wikimedia Commons).
David J. Climenhaga | Tactics used by gun advocates and their Conservative allies to fight the so-called long-gun registry have opened the door to discussion of an outright ban on handguns.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 22
Former MP Jason Kenney, now the leader of the United Conservative Party Opposition (Photo: David J. Climenhaga).
David J. Climenhaga | If it is eventually decided no rules were broken in Jason Kenney's case, the House of Commons may want to tighten how it subsidizes MPs' secondary residences to protect Canadian taxpayers.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 22
Jason Kenney in his Calgary riding during the 2015 federal election (Photo: Facebook).
David J. Climenhaga | Alberta Opposition leader Jason Kenney vigorously denies the allegations as UCP supporters heap abuse Ottawa lawyer Kyle Morrow on Twitter.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 22
This may be the advertisement with which the Canadian Taxpayers Federation ran afoul of Alberta’s third-party election advertising rules (Photo: Facebook).
David J. Climenhaga | The CTF has been disproportionately influential in Canadian political discourse because the mainstream media treats its pronouncements as if they were credible. Will a $6,000 fine change that?
Blog - Alberta Diary January 21
Freedom Conservative Party Leader Derek Fildebrandt channelling Charlton Heston in happier times
David J.Climenhaga | In response to federal Liberal discussions about a handgun ban, the former UCP MLA tweeted, "no matter what the feds do, they will never get their hands on mine."
Blog - Alberta Diary January 20
David J. Climenhaga | Premier Rachel Notley has scheduled a Throne Speech for March 18. One way or the other -- barring calamities or a big surprise -- a general election will follow soon thereafter.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 17
Brian Jean (Photo: Facebook).
David J. Climenhaga | If Brian Jean established anything on Monday, with his Epistle to the Albertans, wherein he set out his "agenda to move Alberta forward," it's that he remains a man desperate to be taken seriously.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 16
Drumheller-Stettler MLA Rick Strankman (Photo: David J. Climenhaga).
David J. Climenhaga | Citing "hyper-partisan self-centred politics" when he quit the UCP yesterday, the Drumheller-Stettler MLA says he hasn't ruled out running again.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 16
Andrew Scheer at CPC Convention - 2018. Photo: Andrew Scheer/Wikimedia Commons
David J. Climenhaga | Unfortunately for Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer, a group of so-called "yellow vests" plans its own cross-Canada convoy. He could end up having to wear whatever they get up to.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 14
A scene from Alberta’s beautiful Bighorn Country. Image: Government of Alberta.
David J. Climenhaga | The NDP's security concerns about future Bighorn town halls are fully justified despite a cynical effort by the UCP to spin cancelled meetings as a plot to stifle opposition.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 10
The entrance to the University of Calgary (Photo: University of Calgary).
David J. Climenhaga | A new paper by two B.C. academics doesn't mince words about the role of the University of Calgary and corporate media in a 2015 controversy about corporate influence in the academy.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 9
Brian Jean and Kimberly Michelutti (Photo: Twitter).
David J. Climenhaga | The old Wildrose Party smoke-making machine was certainly working overtime for the past couple of weeks on the topic of former Wildrose Party leader Brian Jean's impending announcement.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 8
Gene Zwozdesky in the days he was Alberta's minister of health (Photo: David J. Climenhaga).
David J. Climenhaga | Gene Zwozdesky's character encapsulates the qualities that made the PCs so successful for so long in Alberta.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 8
Troy Lanigan, former president and CEO of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, at the 2013 Manning Networking Conference in Ottawa. Photo: David J. Climenhaga
David J. Climenhaga | Right now, it's hard to see where the right-wing Canadian Taxpayers Federation ends and SecondStreet.org, new right-wing think-tank to be launched in March, begins.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 6
NDP strategist Brian Topp
David J. Climenhaga | In a lengthy social media essay published Friday, Topp outlines what the NDP must do to capture votes on both sides of the Rockies.

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