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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 January 21
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney at yesterday’s Keystone XL news conference. Image credit: Video still/Government of Alberta
David J. Climenhaga | Joe Biden was sworn in as the 46th president of the United States yesterday and almost the first thing he did was sign an executive order killing the Keystone XL pipeline.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 20
Conservative Party of Canada Leader Erin O'Toole. Image credit: Erin O'Toole/Facebook
David J. Climenhaga | Most Canadians, one suspects, will conclude that with or without Derek Sloan, Erin O'Toole's still-Trumpified Conservative party is a poisoned chalice, from which they would be wise not to imbibe.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 19
Alberta Energy Minister Sonya Savage, at left. Image credit: David J. Climenhaga
David J. Climenhaga | If you're wondering if the government is on the ropes, or just playing rope-a-dope and letting its opponents tire themselves out, the answer is probably rope-a-dope.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 19
Economist Jim Stanford addressing an Alberta audience in 2019. Image credit: David J. Climenhaga
David J. Climenhaga | "For the sake of fossil-fuel workers, as well as the sake of the planet, the inevitable phase-out of fossil fuels must be announced and confirmed quickly and firmly." -- Jim Stanford
Blog - Alberta Diary January 18
Inquiry Commissioner Steve Allan. Image credit: Video still/Government of Alberta
David J. Climenhaga | It's hard to imagine that things are going to get any better if the inquiry's report is ever released.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 18
U.S. President-elect Joe Biden will rescind the Keystone XL Pipeline permit as soon as he's sworn in on Wednesday, the CBC reports. Image credit: Gage Skidmore/Flickr
David J. Climenhaga | "Rescind Keystone XL pipeline permit," says the transition team's briefing note for day one of the Biden administration on Wednesday. Will Alberta finally wake up and smell the coffee?
Blog - Alberta Diary January 15
Inquiry Commissioner Steve Allan (Image credit: Government of Alberta)
David J. Climenhaga | The supposedly public inquiry has been conducted almost entirely behind closed doors at a cost, so far, of $3.5 million. It is scheduled to report on Jan. 31.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 14
Lesser Slave Lake United Conservative Party MLA Pat Rehn on his recent Mexican vacation. Image credit: Facebook
David J. Climenhaga | In a Facebook post published at 8 a.m., Alberta's premier said MLA Pat Rehn "has made no meaningful effort to work in his constituency, or properly to represent his hard-working constituents."
Blog - Alberta Diary January 13
Alberta Finance Minister Travis Toews speaks to the media in 2019. Image credit: David J. Climenhaga
David J. Climenhaga | Alberta Finance Minister Travis Toews signed an order giving the government's legislated investment manager a veto over anything the Alberta Teachers Retirement Fund instructs it to do.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 12
Danielle Smith and then-premier Jim Prentice on the day of the shocking Wildrose floor crossing in 2014 (Image credit: Dave Cournoyer/Flickr).
David J. Climenhaga | Former Wildrose Party leader and notorious floor-crosser Danielle Smith's swan song yesterday announcing her departure from right-wing talk radio had a distinctly Trumpian tone.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 11
Prescient demonstrators at the White House on a summer night in 2018. (Image credit: David J. Climenhaga).
David J. Climenhaga | Right-wing Canadian politicians like Alberta Premier Kenney need to find a way to put some distance between themselves and the obvious comparisons to Donald Trump's excesses.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 8
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney at yesterday's COVID-19 update (Image credit: Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
David J. Climenhaga | According to Alberta Premier Jason Kenney, travel during the pandemic is bad, but it's safe; it's not recommended, but it's facilitated. Is everyone clear on this now?
Blog - Alberta Diary January 7
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney. Image: Government of Alberta/Flickr
David J. Climenhaga | Painful though it may be to watch, there's nothing bizarre about what happened in Washington. The U.S. has been perfecting the techniques of "colour revolution" for half a century.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 6
Palm Springs sign. Image: Randy Heinitz/Flickr
David J. Climenhaga | Where's the commissioner of the inquiry into "anti-Alberta energy campaigns" when you need him? In Palm Springs, apparently.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 5
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney less than a week ago on New Year's Eve 2020. (Image: Screenshot from UCP video).
David J. Climenhaga | On Friday Jason Kenney praised former municipal affairs minister Tracy Allard for helping keep Calgary-based WestJet in the air. Yesterday, he threw her under the wheels of the airport bus.
Blog - Alberta Diary January 2
David Climenhaga | Albertans learned last week the grim toll from COVID-19 in the province has now passed 1,000 deaths.
Blog - Alberta Diary December 21
Panitch in 2019 (Image: Photo by David J. Climenhaga)
David J. Climenhaga | Panitch, one of the intellectual pillars of the Canadian left and a leading scholar of the global depredations of neoliberalism, died Saturday from COVID-19.
Blog - Alberta Diary December 18
Left to right in background: Alberta Municipal Affairs Minister Tracy Allard, Premier Jason Kenney and Justice Minister Kayvee Madu; In the foreground, Chief Medical Officer of Health Deena Hinshaw. (Image: Kaycee Madu/Twitter)
David J. Climenhaga | Justice Minister Kaycee Madu posted a photo of himself with Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Premier Jason Kenney and Municipal Affairs Minister Tracy Allard. Only Hinshaw wore a mask.
Blog - Alberta Diary December 17
Image: CHUTTERSNAP​/Unsplash
David J. Climenhaga | The electric vehicle technology breakthrough could have a huge impact on the demand for Alberta's number one non-agricultural product: oil.
Blog - Alberta Diary December 16
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney at Edmonton International Airport. Image: Jason Kenney/Twitter
David J. Climenhaga | Days ago, Conservative leaders were calling Canada's COVID-19 vaccine rollout "a debacle." Now they're trying to jump aboard and take credit.
Blog - Alberta Diary December 15
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney. Image: Alberta Newsroom/Flickr
David J. Climenhaga | Ten months ago, Conservatives everywhere were howling at Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for his response to Wet'suwet'en solidarity actions. Now, some are defending anti-mask protesters.
Blog - Alberta Diary December 14
Image: Jason Kenney/Twitter
David J. Climenhaga | The Canadian Energy Centre stumbled out of the starting gate on December 11, 2019, and has been little more than an embarrassment since.
Blog - Alberta Diary December 14
Premier Jason Kenney with his "letter from Santa." Image: Screenshot of Facebook video
David J. Climenhaga | Alberta Premier Jason Kenney's bizarre holiday message might have been cute if almost 700 people hadn't died from COVID-19.
Blog - Alberta Diary December 11
Image: Macau Photo Agency/Unsplash
David J. Climenhaga | Soon after Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou was arrested by the RCMP two years ago, Chinese state security officers arrested two Canadian men, Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor.
Blog - Alberta Diary December 10
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney. Image: Alberta Newsroom/Flickr
David J. Climenhaga | With focus on Kenney's hesitant response to COVID-19, some observers have overlooked the fact that his management of the economy and energy sector hasn't been much better.
Blog - Alberta Diary December 9
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney announces tougher COVID-19 measures at yesterday's news conference. Image: Alberta Newsroom/Flickr
David J. Climenhaga | The Kenney government sharply changed course yesterday and announced much tougher lockdown measures that have the potential to slow the spread of COVID-19.
Blog - Alberta Diary December 8
Alberta Chief Medical Officer of Health Deena Hinshaw at yesterday's daily COVID-19 briefing. Image: Screenshot of Alberta government video
David J. Climenhaga | "If the goal is to bring our numbers down, we will need additional measures to be able to do that," said Dr. Deena Hinshaw at the daily pandemic briefing.
Blog - Alberta Diary December 7
Dr. Stephen Duckett. Image: David J. Climenhaga
David J. Climenhaga | As the Victorian state government was accepting the recommendations of a former AHS CEO, the United Conservative Party government of Premier Jason Kenney was doing the opposite on every count.
Blog - Alberta Diary December 4
Image: Kārlis Dambrāns​/Flickr
David J. Climenhaga | It was evident as soon as Meng was arrested in Vancouver two years ago that participating in this charade was not in Canada's interest.
Blog - Alberta Diary December 3
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney. Image: Alberta Newsroom/Flickr
David J. Climenhaga | "Star Trek" actor William Shatner called the Jason Kenney government's refusal to activate the federal government's COVID Alert app "bizarre and dangerous."