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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 May 26
Photo: Premier of Alberta/Flickr
David J. Climenhaga | Ironic it is. But was the Edmonton Journal's editorial something to do with NDP MP Charlie Angus's letter to Finance Minister Bill Morneau, or just coincidence?
Blog - Alberta Diary May 24
A wildfire at Loon Lake on the Ashcroft First Nation Reserves in British Columbia in 2017. Photo: Shawn Cahill/Creative Commons
David J. Climenhaga | Think of climate obstructionism in Alberta today as a three-legged stool. Postmedia is one leg, the Kenney government another, and fossil fuel industry lobby groups the third.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 23
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney, channeling Ralph Klein, arrives in the legislative building's rotunda after the throne speech. Photo: David J. Climenhaga
David J. Climenhaga | If you were paying attention during the campaign, you've heard most of the United Conservative Party's first throne speech before. The interesting stuff was between the lines.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 23
Nathan Cooper in campaign mode. Photo: Nathan Cooper/Facebook
David J. Climenhaga | Back in 2015, Alberta's new Speaker said asking MLAs to come to work an hour earlier, at 9 a.m., two days a week showed "blatant disrespect for the Opposition."
Blog - Alberta Diary May 21
Dale the street preacher, in a reflective moment away from the streets of Edmonton. Photo: David J. Climenhaga
David J. Climenhaga | "After five years, the only time that I feel normal is when I'm on that box preaching" -- Dale the street preacher.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 21
Jason Kenney. Photo: David J. Climenhaga
David J. Climenhaga | Postmedia trying to get its snout into the "war room" trough is interesting, even amusing. But the bigger story will be the boondoggle to come.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 20
The former state-of-the-art Deerfoot Trail headquarters of the literally failing Calgary Herald. Photo: David J. Climenhaga.
David J. Climenhaga | A day never passes that the same UCP-Postmedia stenographers who openly campaigned against Rachel Notley don't also attack Justin Trudeau.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 17
Campground in Vermilion, Alberta. Photo: Provincial Archives of Alberta/Wikimedia Commons
David J. Climenhaga | The UCP strategy for waging the war on the war on fun is re-admitting copious amounts of booze to Alberta's provincial parks on long weekends.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 16
Vice-Admiral Mark Norman hands over a plaque to the commander of the U.S. Chief of Naval Operations (Photo: Julianne F. Metzger/U.S. Navy/Wikimedia Commons).
David J. Climenhaga | None of us knows whether Vice-Admiral Mark Norman is guilty of the crime with which he was charged. Pardoned by the president, Lord Black may now exit the Dominion.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 15
The amusing staged photo of part of UNA's bargaining team that accompanied the union's news release yesterday. Photo: United Nurses of Alberta.
David J. Climenhaga | If you care about health care, you've got to have a bad feeling about how this is all going to end.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 14
MLA Shannon Phillips. Photo: David J. Climenhaga
David J. Climenhaga | Alberta's 24 NDP Opposition MLAs were sworn in yesterday and Opposition leader Rachel Notley, not so long ago the province's premier, named the MLAs who will fill her shadow cabinet portfolios.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 13
Alberta Party Leader Stephen Mandel. Photo: David J. Climenhaga
David J. Climenhaga | Don't assume just because Canadian Conservatives eliminated per-vote subsidies that Jason Kenney and the UCP won't reverse course completely on the idea of a subsidy for the Alberta Party.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 12
Image: Screenshot of Veteran's Affairs video
David J. Climenhaga | Maybe the confusion of the Department of Veterans Affairs' video editors is more understandable than we 21st-century Canadians would like to admit.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 10
Alberta Health Minister Tyler Shandro with Premier Jason Kenney at cabinet swearing-In ceremony. Photo: Premier of Alberta/Flickr
David J. Climenhaga | When it opted to build a $590-million "superlab" in Edmonton, Alberta's former NDP government was relying on sound advice from the Health Quality Council of Alberta.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 10
The anti-reproductive-rights march in Edmonton. Photo: David J. Climenhaga
David J. Climenhaga | In at least some cases, busing costs appear to have been paid by school districts -- as were the costs of substitute teachers to hold classes for students who didn't participate.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 9
Green Party of Canada Leader Elizabeth May and Paul Manly. Photo: Paul Manly/Facebook
David J. Climenhaga | It's no longer hard to imagine a Green tsunami on the West Coast as voters there, disillusioned by unkept Liberal and NDP promises, shift their support to May's Green Party.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 8
Jason Kenney with his "blue ribbon" panel. From left to right: Mike Percy, Dave Mowat, Travis Toews, Janice MacKinnon, Kenney, Kim Henderson, Jay Ramotar, and Bev Dahlby (Photo: Government of Alberta).
David J. Climenhaga | Brace yourselves, people. Alberta Premier Jason Kenney has announced his "blue ribbon" panel to do a "deep dive" into the province's books and figure out how to get them into the black.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 7
Photo: WinterE229 (WinterforceMedia)/Wikimedia Commons
David J. Climenhaga | The plan in a nutshell: blame Ottawa; say you're doing something; if the problem gets fixed, take credit; if not, assign blame again.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 5
Former Alberta premier Rachel Notley, now the leader of the Opposition, addresses the Alberta Federation of Labour's convention in Calgary yesterday
David J. Climenhaga | Alberta's new Opposition leader did not give the impression of a person who has given in to despair, or who is ready to wrap herself in a blanket and start rewatching Game of Thrones.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 4
David J. Climenhaga | On the question of his housing claims while an MP, Jason Kenney has only been vindicated in the way U.S. President Donald Trump was vindicated by Special Counsel Robert Mueller's report.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 2
British Columbia Premier John Horgan speaks to media in the rose garden of the Legislature Building in Victoria. Photo: Province of British Columbia/Flickr
David J. Climenhaga | There may be an argument for Canadian refineries to buy "ethical" Alberta oil, but giving Alberta governments the opportunity to turn the taps on and off to achieve policy goals sure undercuts it.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 1
Looking justifiably pleased with himself, Alberta Premier Jason Kenney moments after he was sworn in yesterday (Photo: Screenshot of Government of Alberta video).
David J. Climenhaga | In the new Alberta premier's defence, he didn't really have any caucus members to pick from in Edmonton.
Blog - Alberta Diary April 29
Andrew Scheer and Jason Kenney: Not necessarily as close as you might think … Photo: Andrew Scheer/Twitter
David J. Climenhaga | Right now we seem to be headed for an intramural game of chicken between Ottawa and Edmonton.
Blog - Alberta Diary April 27
Soon-to-be-Alberta-premier Jason Kenney. Photo: David J. Climenhaga
David J. Climenhaga | The actual Alberta NDP vote actually went up marginally from 2015, when the party won a majority government, to 2019, when it was shut out of most of the province.
Blog - Alberta Diary April 26
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau campaigning in Edmonton in October 2015. Photo: David J. Climenhaga
David J. Climenhaga | Thanks to the work done by outgoing Alberta Premier Rachel Notley, support for the TMX in Canada has probably reached its high-water mark. It has nowhere to go but down.
Blog - Alberta Diary April 25
Pizzagate protesters in Washington D.C. Photo: Will Sommer/Twitter
David J. Climenhaga | The idea the Rockefellers are behind a big-money scheme to bottle up Alberta's resources is built on the stuff they use to fill bubble-wrap.
Blog - Alberta Diary April 24
Alberta premier designate Jason Kenney (Photo: David J. Climenhaga)
David J. Climenhaga | Jason Kenney's "civil libertarian instincts" apparently don't mean much when it comes to fending off critical news stories.
Blog - Alberta Diary April 23
NDP Leader Rachel Notley during her last campaign rally in Edmonton. Photo: David J. Climenhaga.
David J. Climenhaga | By the end of 2018, the only arrow left in the NDP's quiver was to attack the character of the UCP's leadership and the ugly instincts of the UCP base.
Blog - Alberta Diary April 18
Alberta NDP leader Rachel Notley on Tuesday night. Photo: David J. Climenhaga.
David J. Climenhaga | If Justin Trudeau were smart, he'd cancel the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project right now.
Blog - Alberta Diary April 17
Jason Kenney wins Alberta election. Photo: jkenney/Twitter
David J. Climenhaga | No one can say Kenney didn't communicate his plans clearly or that he doesn't have a mandate.

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