rabble blogs are the personal pages of some of Canada's most insightful progressive activists and commentators. All opinions belong to the writer; however, writers are expected to adhere to our guidelines. We welcome new bloggers -- contact us for details.

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 June 23
Premier Brad Wall. Image: Flickr/University of Saskatchewan
David J. Climenhaga | Wednesday was the longest day of the year, and Standard & Poor's chose the summer solstice to downgrade Saskatchewan's credit rating from AA+ to AA.
Blog - Alberta Diary June 23
Image: Flickr/UN Women
David Climenhaga | The Trudeau government's Bill C-4, which repeals the Harper government's anti-union legislation, received Royal Assent on Monday.
Blog - Alberta Diary June 22
Derek Fildebrandt and Jason Kenney. Image: Twitter/@pcyouthalberta
David J. Climenhaga | Derek Fildebrandt is well known for alleging the Alberta NDP hoodwinked voters by keeping its promises, an opinion that caused general hilarity from coast to coast.
Blog - Alberta Diary June 20
Tzeporah Berman (Photo: David Climenhaga)
David J. Climenhaga | By constantly vilifying a prominent environmentalist, critics undermine the work of all members of the Oil Sands Advisory Group. They should be asked why.
Blog - Alberta Diary June 19
Photo: Kat Northern Lights Man/flickr
David J. Climenhaga | The newspaper industry is demanding a handout to float the pro-market claptrap and right-wing propaganda no one will voluntarily pay for. This is ironic, to say the least.
Blog - Alberta Diary June 17
Tzeporah Berman (Photo: David Climenhaga)
David J. Climenhaga | A talented public advocacy tactician, Tzeporah Berman was vocal in her support for the British Columbia NDP and its opposition to the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion.
Blog - Alberta Diary June 17
Brian Jean & Jason Kenney
David J. Climenhaga | The United Conservative Party's foundational documents illuminate the shambolic and extra-legal way Alberta operated for so many years under the PCs.
Blog - Alberta Diary June 12
Then-Wildrose MLAs Kerry Towle, leader Danielle Smith and Jeff Wilson (all behind the sign) take part in the August 2014 Calgary Pride parade.
David J. Climenhaga | There's a reason why Alberta's conservatives engage in this kind of self-destructive behaviour. It reflects the views of a powerful, socially conservative cabal within their parties.
Blog - Alberta Diary June 8
Ralph Klein in 1992 (Screenshot of CBC broadcast)
David J. Climenhaga | Gillian Steward recounts how the Klein government allowed an industry dominated “task force” on oilsands development to pass itself off as a neutral agency with ties to the government.
Blog - Alberta Diary June 7
Alberta Labour Minister Christina Gray. Image: David Climenhaga
David J. Climenhaga | Defeated Wildrose amendments called for end to Rand Formula, opposed first-collective agreement arbitration and tried to make it illegal for union supporters to visit potential union members' homes.
Blog - Alberta Diary June 7
Photo: Mack Male/flickr
David J. Climenhaga | If a UCP government were elected, this formula would be applied to more than just one aspect of election financing. Alberta would soon say goodbye to the NDP's ban on corporate and union donations.
Blog - Alberta Diary June 6
David Khan, seen here with Liberal Party executive director Gwyneth Midgley
David J. Climenhaga | Mr. Khan will likely be a persuasive and hard working leader, but it is hard to imagine any circumstance in which Alberta's Liberals can succeed electorally.
Blog - Alberta Diary June 5
Jason Kenney in 2010 at the Calgary Stampede Parade.
David J. Climenhaga | Nowadays many conservative politicians participate in Pride Parades, like next Saturday's in Edmonton. The reason is clear: They've become important political events.
Blog - Alberta Diary June 1
Tanker in port (Wilimedia Commons)
David J. Climenhaga | Alberta politicians invested in the tidewater premium tale aren't going to like David Hughes' report one bit. Expect more fireworks.
Blog - Alberta Diary June 1
Rachel Notley, Brian Mason, Sarah Hoffman & Supporters (Image: David Climenhaga)
David J. Climenhaga | If Rachel Notley doesn't frighten the leaders of the Wildrose Opposition and Progressive Conservative Party, by gosh she should!
Blog - Alberta Diary May 30
Derek Fildebrandt
David J. Climenhaga | "For those of us who supported the man we call 'Mad Max,' Bernier's loss was a heartbreaking disappointment." – Derek Fildebrandt, Wildrose finance critic
Blog - Alberta Diary May 29
Photo: Marcos Oliveira/Agência Senado/flickr
David J. Climenhaga | Despite Andrew Scheer's supposedly human face, don't bet the urban farm on him or his Conservative Party getting very far on the strength of a nice smile.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 28
Joe Clark & Maureen McTeer, 1976 (Toronto Public Library)
David J. Climenhaga | The Conservative Party of Canada has announced selection of a new leader, a 38-year-old MP from the west named Andrew Scheer. Dear readers, do you see a pattern here?
Blog - Alberta Diary May 26
Dr. Doug Klein, Edmonton family physician, Dr. David Ryan, St. Albert family physician, and Minister of Labour, Christina Gray.
David J. Climenhaga | Upon passage, Bill 17 will bring Alberta labour law as it pertains to unions into the late 20th Century and place it squarely in the middle of the legal mainstream.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 25
Joan Crockatt. Image: David Climenhaga
David J. Climenhaga | A great Liberal candidate, Kent Hehr, and a great Liberal campaign, Justin Trudeau's, won the election of 2015. Claims to the contrary are codswallop.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 24
Christina Gray
David J. Climenhaga | Labour law changes expected in legislation in Alberta are not likely to be as bold as those planned by Ontario's Liberal government.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 19
Brian Jean & Jason Kenney (Wildrose Party photo)
David J. Climenhaga | The You See Pee may enter the 2019 Alberta election favoured by political odds makers, but they are as capable of blowing their lead to smithereens as the PCs were in 2015.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 18
Richard Nixon and Henry Kissinger
David J. Climenhaga | Unlike 1972 when we all thought the world might end the same way because Nixon was mining Haiphong Harbour, at least this time there’s someone around who might be able to talk the president out of it.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 18
Rachel Notley
David J. Climenhaga | The "Asian premium" and "tidewater premium" for Alberta bitumen are myths spread by governments and pipeline proponents, argues earth scientist David Hughes.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 16
Rona Ambrose (Photo: Number 10/flickr)
David J. Climenhaga | The Wilson Center is tied closely to the U.S. government and housed in the Ronald Reagan Building. As a former Conservative Party leader, Rona Ambrose should feel right at home there.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 12
Shannon Daub (Photo: David Climenhaga)
David J. Climenhaga | The New Climate Change Deniers ask: Why take the flack for denying the reality of climate change when you can have the same effect and get credit for being "green"?
Blog - Alberta Diary May 10
Rachel Notley in Tokyo, April 2017
David J. Climenhaga | Success on the pipeline file is apparently essential to political success in Alberta -- never mind the world market for petroleum.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 5
Alberta Premier Rachel Notley on May 5, 2015. Image: David Climenhaga
David J. Climenhaga | Keep an eye on what happens in British Columbia, Nova Scotia and Ontario. And take it from Alberta: never say never!
Blog - Alberta Diary May 4
Photo: DanielPaquet/Wikimedia Commons
David J. Climenhaga | In the short term it looks very much as if the Saskatchewan government will need to be in court appealing the ruling if Premier Brad Wall hopes to keep it from taking effect.
Blog - Alberta Diary May 3
Fort Mac Fire
David J. Climenhaga | Ignoring the effects of global climate change as a policy, as some political parties, notably not the Alberta NDP, want to do, is not the answer to situations like the Fort Mac Wildfire.