Part 1: Chinese checkers and GO

CANADA IS PLAYING a child’s game. When it comes to China and international business, the rule of law, and the Asian giant’s internal politics, Canada likes to throw down its trump cards: quality canola & pork, for instance, food Chinese families rely on; affordable access for Chinese students at our best post-secondary institutes; respect for rule … More Part 1: Chinese checkers and GO

Head-Smashed-In Politics

WE ARE WORRIED, very worried. And you should be too.

An image in mind that best explains what lies ahead politically is to imagine a spooked herd of bison galloping toward a cliff. … More Head-Smashed-In Politics

There’s No Business like Show Business–in Alberta

MOVIE-MAKERS ADORE LONGVIEW’S ranching country nestled in the foothills of southern Alberta. And rightly so, it’s one of the most gorgeous places on Earth. Clint Eastwood fell in love with Alberta. Unforgiven, his Academy award-winning blockbuster which revived the Western genre of motion pictures, was shot in the province. As was Brokeback Mountain, another Academy top … More There’s No Business like Show Business–in Alberta

Land of LITTLE Rain & BIG Consequences

“The real people of the West are infrequently cowboys and never myths…and they confront the real problems of real life in a real region…they live in a land of little rain and big consequences.” (Wallace Stegner, The Sound of Mountain Water, 1969) We don’t need the Conference Board of Canada to tell us our province’s economy is … More Land of LITTLE Rain & BIG Consequences

a mother of invention…

POLARIZED POLITICS drives a wedge between people. Perhaps you’ve been on the receiving end of disappointment & anger of friends who feel rejected or judged because you’re not joining their team.  Finding a pathway through the prickliness can seem impossible.  One of my best guides in clearing new pathways has been my mother, Eleanor. Diagnosed … More a mother of invention…

Seven reasons why Canada is doomed…

IT WAS CENTENNIAL YEAR when Jacques Parizeau had an epiphany.

Travelling by transcontinental train from Montreal to Banff in 1967, the future Quebec premier and leader of the Parti Quebecois realized the country was unworkable. … More Seven reasons why Canada is doomed…

Seven reasons why Justin Trudeau must resign

THE SMARTEST GUY in the room just left the Prime Minister’s Office leaving Justin Trudeau to act on his own. This is tragic. And it won’t end well. … More Seven reasons why Justin Trudeau must resign

Fire me again…I dare you!

I don’t know Jody Wilson-Raybould personally, and don’t pretend to speak for her. But I certainly  have a sense for how she might feel at the moment, especially since she’s been castigated by some wonks as not a team player. What are her options? … More Fire me again…I dare you!

More Fire me again…I dare you!

Eleanor’s Secret Army

Today, there is a women’s movement that’s quick to rise, march in the streets, yell & holler to achieve social change (admittedly long overdue). But we — as women — have forgotten something important in the #metoo era. … More Eleanor’s Secret Army

…beware the Polar Vortex [part 3]

Canadians are conditioned to look south. We must look north! Sea ice in the Arctic is heating up, and Alberta is a northern gateway. The clear & present danger of climate change is how Canadian sovereignty will survive in the new North. … More …beware the Polar Vortex [part 3]

A logic bomb… [part 2]

It doesn’t make sense, they reason, to ship oil by rail when pipelines are safer. It also isn’t smart to give up market share to American competitors who frack as they damn well please. And the engineers are correct —  it doesn’t make much sense — logically. 

LOGIC CAN BE A BLINDSPOT.

Logic isn’t going to solve the present challenges facing western Canada. … More A logic bomb… [part 2]

Clearing the Plains 2.0

Canada is a work in progress. And it’s the very idea of progress (as we shall discuss in this series of posts) which has put the country in the crosshairs of activists, advocacy groups, and especially our current prime minister. We believe that if unchecked, ill-defined ambitions for the prairie and the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains will echo a history (and a dreadful one at that) in the name of progress.  … More Clearing the Plains 2.0

Has Trudeau committed treason?

When he was running for election, our prime minister never said he was going to conduct a radical experiment. He never said he wanted to be leader of the first post-nation nation-state. We thought he was running to be leader of Canada, our country! This is dangerous stuff. We can’t wait until next November to get our country back on track. … More Has Trudeau committed treason?

CBC REPOST: TRUDEAU’S NEGLECT OF THE NATION HAS LED US TO THIS PLACE

Justin Trudeau’s claim that Canada has no core identity, that we’re the first post-nation nation state, is reawakening dark forces thought buried in western Canada. Some believe that the Canadian confederation is at risk… … More CBC REPOST: TRUDEAU’S NEGLECT OF THE NATION HAS LED US TO THIS PLACE

Quiet strength & manifest destiny…

My mother is 81-years-old. Graceful to a fault. And very ill with cancer.
At her most vulnerable, the conversations with Mom are not just poignant—can I say this?—they’re instructive. … More Quiet strength & manifest destiny…

Trudeau, rail cars, winter…

WINTER in Alberta.

Right now, the NDP government—with the blessing of the official opposition in Alberta— is considering a rollback, hundreds of thousands of barrels of oil per day from the province’s production. UCP leader Jason Kenney said as much, in an extraordinary press conference… … More Trudeau, rail cars, winter…

No more glassholes…

We need to up our game.
Once again, Alberta needs to create the conditions to attract new talent and retain the very best & brightest to rebuild the (former) Petroleum Paradise. … More No more glassholes…

Out of left field comes…

YOU MIGHT HATE THIS, but spectator sports — hockey, football, the olympics — are a diminishing crowd… … More Out of left field comes…

The Great Global Game

It’s known as the ‘great global game’. A daily contest that’s played with boats and shipping lanes.  A vast majority of world’s goods–including energy–are delivered via the world’s sea lanes. If you don’t have a boat that can float your stuff to markets abroad, you can’t even play to lose… … More The Great Global Game

oh-oh… Dear Robyn Luff

Dear Robyn, You don’t know me, but you might know of me.  I’m the woman saddled with a political stain and chatter behind my back. I’m the gal who did what you just did… And if Premier Rachel Notley loses in 2019, you will be blamed for that (as much as I have been fingered … More oh-oh… Dear Robyn Luff

An olympic fail (or the end of an error)?

If we had a story of our province—a pragmatic dream of what we believed we could look like a decade from now here on the prairies, a story every Albertan could see themselves in–would we be having polarized debates about the 2026 Winter Olympics bid?
More An olympic fail (or the end of an error)?

Saudi Arabia: What’s Canada to do?

Considering the Saudi regime’s unbelievable cover story and persistent lies to account for a vicious murder of a prominent Saudi journalist, what’s Canada to do? … More Saudi Arabia: What’s Canada to do?

India: What’s the big attraction?

I’m no longer a politician. And I find myself travelling in India (a longer story), in the wake of our prime minister’s costume ball, and lately Jason Kenney’s hi-how-are-you tour. This week, it’s the honourable Andrew Scheer’s turn to enjoy sit down conversations with leadership and business in the world’s largest democracy; they got their photo-ops, for sure. Handshakes.

But that’s not what I saw. … More India: What’s the big attraction?

PETER’S PRINCIPLES: A 12-step recovery guide for the politically perplexed…

YOU JUST LIVED through one of the craziest summers in political memory. There’s an antidote to the current chaos & confusion…

More PETER’S PRINCIPLES: A 12-step recovery guide for the politically perplexed…

“What the hell is a not-withstanding clause?” a premier said, decades ago.

DOUG FORD has the left up in arms. The freshly-elected Ontario premier is deploying the ‘notwithstanding clause’ to disrupt a judge’s decision he doesn’t like. What’s that got to do with Alberta? The very idea of a ‘notwithstanding clause’ was invented in our Legislature. And it was Peter Lougheed, Alberta’s premier during the tense constitutional talks … More “What the hell is a not-withstanding clause?” a premier said, decades ago.

Peter’s Principles: RULE OF LAW

Charlie Fischer, an energy executive in Alberta, talks about how business people and foreign investors look at Alberta, something Peter Lougheed always considered. Making Alberta an attractive place for investment, it was one of PETER’S PRINCIPLES. … More Peter’s Principles: RULE OF LAW

There’s no business like no business…

Turbulence ahead! What’s Alberta’s Plan B, Plan C, Plan D? I’m deeply concerned that Alberta is up in the air. And we have no idea how all this crazy business is going to land. … More There’s no business like no business…

Free Trade at the periphery.

FREE TRADE IS A BIG DEAL in southwestern Ontario. I’m visiting relatives here. Donald Trump just declared NAFTA as good as dead. Pointing to a new deal with Mexico, the American president set a deadline for Canada to come to terms. Friday. The end of the month.
More Free Trade at the periphery.

Details, details, details…

THE PERIPHERY:
It’s smart to pay attention to what’s in front of you, but have you noticed what’s happening along the periphery of your vision?
Come, join me in this learning journey in southern Alberta! … More Details, details, details…

Peter’s Principles: PRAGMATIC DREAMS

Peter’s Principles. What guided the leadership of Premier Peter Lougheed? We’re talking to people who worked alongside Lougheed to find out. Here’s an excerpt from a conversation with Brent Harding, a civil servant in Lougheed’s 1st government in 1971. … More Peter’s Principles: PRAGMATIC DREAMS