You can be forgiven for being cranky.
It’s getting to be 40 below. Character building weather.
Wrestling in the Alberta legislature provided some welcome distraction — Rock ‘em Notley versus Sock ‘em Smith — pure theatre.
A speech from the Throne, they called it. And you can imagine it was, if you’re sitting on a toilet. A real shit show, yup. Theatre of the absurd.
But what a performance by the lead actors!
Actor 1: Rachel Notley walked into a trap, calling for a vote on the new premier’s so-called Sovereignty Act. This isn’t the first time she’s been sucker-punched. Justin Trudeau did it to her, more than once. If she wants to be boss woman in the province, Notley is going to have to stop playing a naive sop.
Actor 2: Former premier Jason Kenney decided this was the moment to announce his exit from Alberta politics. Brilliant! It prompted (supporting actor) Minister Tyler Shandro to go nearly purple with rage and bolt from the Legislature. Excellent performances, all round!
Actor 3: Danielle Smith (leading lady of the moment), has proven she can take a page from Trump’s franchise playbook and do American politics lite. She’s succeeded in riling up the great unwashed, turning a so-called sovereignty bill into the rubber chicken the slightly showered press can complain about (a holiday gift since things are getting slow in the newsroom).
If this is a taste of things to come, get out your virtual reality goggles. You’re about to enter into the topsy Metaverse of Alberta Politics, where up is down, and sideways is, well… let’s just wait and see.
One thing is for certain: politics attracts actors. The best of the bunch get to dress up and play all kinds of nifty roles.
Remember when Justin Trudeau juiced up his political career by challenging a First Nations guy to a charity boxing match? He beat the daylights out of Conservative Senator Patrick Brazeau. Pure theatrics! It put Trudeau (the younger) on the map as a top Liberal performer in 2012.
Actors perform roles. If you are a good actor, you play the role as written. You are not required to believe or inhabit the personality you are directed to play. You just have to make it look believable.
Whoever is writing Premier Smith’s scripts….er, speeches, take note: it all sounds self-serving, mostly disingenuous, and the sincerity lightbulb is pretty dim.
As for scripting the Leader of the Loyal Opposition: the way the show works is you’re supposed to be irate, furious, and all the rest of the performance after you’ve heard the details — all of the Throne speech — just in case you miss stuff, eh.
It’s cold. Miserable weather.
Albertans deserve some comic relief.
This column is the consensus opinion of the writers Donna Kennedy-Glans & Don Hill. If you haven’t already, please subscribe to BEYOND POLARITY — scroll down on your phone or tablet, or look to the right in the panel beside this post. Enter your email to FOLLOW, a wheel spins, hamsters get fed.