Thursday, October 19, 2017

Schweitzer is particularly worried that social conservatives will seize control of the party. He says after giving speeches to members mentioning the need for gay-straight alliances to protect gay and lesbian students from suicide and homelessness, some UCP members responded: “That’s God’s punishment for them.” Schweitzer shakes his head: “Clearly, there’s no place for that in this new United Conservative Party; there’s no place for that in politics today.”





http://edmontonjournal.com/opinion/columnists/graham-thomson-civic-election-results-a-warning-for-conservatives-ucp-leadership-candidate-says


Graham Thomson: Civic election results a warning for conservatives, UCP leadership candidate says

Graham Thomson, Edmonton JournalGRAHAM THOMSON, EDMONTON JOURNAL
Published on: October 19, 2017 | Last Updated: October 19, 2017 6:00 AM MDT
Doug Schweitzer of the United Conservative Party at Shell Place in Fort McMurray on Thursday, Oct. 12, 2017. VINCE MCDERMOTT /POSTMEDIA
He is the third-place candidate in a three-person race. His profile so low, he isn’t even included in some public opinion polls.
But it would be a mistake to ignore Doug Schweitzer in the race for leader of the United Conservative Party.
Not that he’s likely to win.
He will likely finish a distant third behind former Wildrose leader Brian Jean and former Progressive Conservative leader Jason Kenney.
“NDP organizers were active and young people showed up in droves.”
Schweitzer arguably lacks the financing, the experience and the campaign machinery to do any better.
Of course, there’s always the slim chance he could pull an “Ed Stelmach” and win an upset victory.
That could theoretically happen because the vote is being done through a preferential ballot where party members rank the candidates first, second or third.
I could explain the convoluted mechanics of a preferential ballot, but I don’t have the time and you don’t have the patience.
A simplistic way of putting it is Schweitzer could win by being everybody’s second choice.
But it’s much more likely that Kenney or Jean will win an outright majority on the first count than Schweitzer will somehow win on the second.
Now that I’ve discounted Schweitzer’s chances as a candidate, let me explain why he shouldn’t be discounted as an up-and-coming politician.
Schweitzer is warning Alberta’s new conservative party that if it becomes too conservative, it will alienate a majority of voters.
He points to the results of Monday’s mayoral election in Calgary as a precursor to the next provincial election.
He sees the “progressive” incumbent Naheed Nenshi as a proxy for the NDP and the “conservative” challenger Bill Smith as a proxy for the UCP.
(Neither ran as a banner carrier for either party, but Smith is a former president of the PC party.)
I could explain the convoluted mechanics of a preferential ballot, but I don’t have the time and you don’t have the patience.
Smith ran a well-funded machine that seemed to have no message other than calling for “change.” It was aimed solely at defeating Nenshi. It didn’t work.
“The left wing kicked our butt,” says Schweitzer. “NDP organizers were active and young people showed up in droves.”
Schweitzer, 38, is a Calgary lawyer who calls himself a “fiscal conservative and social moderate.” He is the epitome of what it used to mean to be a progressive conservative.
He is trying to attract disgruntled PC members to the new UCP, arguing the party can be a home to people like him.
But only if the party can demonstrate it can take Alberta into the 21st century and not drag it back into the 20th.
Schweitzer is particularly worried that social conservatives will seize control of the party. He says after giving speeches to members mentioning the need for gay-straight alliances to protect gay and lesbian students from suicide and homelessness, some UCP members responded: “That’s God’s punishment for them.”
Schweitzer shakes his head: “Clearly, there’s no place for that in this new United Conservative Party; there’s no place for that in politics today.”
He says the Calgary election results demonstrate how voters in a “conservative” city are in fact “progressives” when it comes to social issues: “We saw a machine of people turn out, young voters as well, that came out in droves to say, ‘No, we don’t want to have that traditional conservative type of campaign, we don’t want that type of politics. We want to have a more inclusive dynamic. Social issues matter to us.’ They sent a message in that campaign.”
Provincial politicians of all stripes are pouring over the civic election results to see if there are any portents for the next provincial election.
Trying to plug the results of municipal elections into provincial electoral forecasts is not straightforward or even necessarily accurate.
But Schweitzer is not saying that because Nenshi won re-election, the NDP will do likewise.
He is warning smug conservatives that the NDP’s defeat is not a foregone conclusion. The UCP has to appeal to the majority of Albertans who are moderates, not just the minority who hold memberships in the UCP.
Schweitzer might finish third in the UCP leadership race, but the party should not treat him, and his message, as a loser.
gthomson@postmedia.com



Julie Ali · 
Mr. Schweitzer is an intelligent man who understands that many Conservative voters will not vote for the UCP now that they have taken in the PCs. Why would we? The Wildrose was supposed to move away from the incompetence and arrogance of the PCs--not become part of that culture. In addition some Wildrose members appear to exist in the dark ages and will not become modernized. Their attitudes with reference to social issues are not productive and will indeed, harm the UCP chances of getting elected to government.

He is quite correct in saying that we will not vote for any party that ignores the human rights of some of us. It's troubling that we have such ignorance about LGBTQ issues in Alberta but there you go. It is what it is. There will always be folks in the dinosaur age. But we don't need to vote for political parties that promote dinosaur viewpoints.

Calgary's election was indeed a warning for the old guard in the Progressive Conservative Party. If y'all can't get a former PC party president elected at the municipal election after throwing oodles of money into the effort and targeting twitter insults at Mr. Nenshi then how will y'all get the PCs in the Wildrose Party to tidewater? Doubtful in my opinion.

Mr. Schweitzer also has some good ideas such as reducing compensation packages of all public sector employees; this would hopefully include the bigwigs who earn astronomical amounts for being talking heads at places like AHS, Covenant Health and other ABCs (agencies,boards and commissions).

When oil prices were high we could afford these luxuries; now it's time to ensure that the provincial debt doesn't become excessive. If folks won't accept reductions in compensation this offer will be replaced by Klein error cuts to staffing.

I am not willing to increase our family's taxes for the indulgences and privileges of the public sector and I doubt that other citizens working in an increasingly fragile private sector are willing to pony up more tax money to keep this leaking ship of government afloat. Unionized workers will have to accept lower salaries, benefits and pension plans. We're doing without them in the private sector so why would we pay for all this excess in the public sector?

I doubt that Mr. Schweitzer's common sense advice will be listened to by the UCP folks who will probably go through more Lake of Fire events. It's almost like they don't want to form the government during this prolonged bust.
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Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Edmonton Journal 11 hrs · Sears Canada said earlier this week that only customers who bought a protection agreement within the past 30 days could get refunds from paying for extended coverage.



Sears Canada said earlier this week that only customers who bought a protection agreement within the past 30 days could get refunds from paying for extended coverage.
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Julie Ali This is such a rip off.
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Gordon de Rouyan If I was a company who purchase something with a warranty, I would prorate the warranty over that period. Now we are hearing that Sears consumed that revenue stream in the same year it was purchased rather than in the period it was earned. Sounds like a bad accounting practice!!!
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M Gaye Dow Can't win! Didn't buy the warranty last time and the fridge quit. Bought a new one and paid nearly 500 for the warranty 6 months ago.
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Paul Loveridge Got 10 months of our 2 year extended warranty!!! Big ripoff!
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Kieran-Evan Fraser Man it's still crazy to see Sears going under
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Ryan Keller Seeing a lot of Kenmore crap on Kijiji these days. 😂
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Wendy Peers Lol. Sears only put a Kenmore logo on their appliances, they didn’t make them. The appliances are all big brand names with the Kenmore logo on them.
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