The non conformer's Canadian Weblog

July 3, 2009

ALBERTAN Gov’t peddles fear now to make CITIZENS buy cuts

 THE ALBERTA NEWS MEDIA AND THE GOVERNMENTS OF ALBERTA DO NOT LIKE TO DISCLOSE THE REALITY OF THE MANY HIDDEN TAXES, HIDDEN EXTRA COSTS  IN ALBERTA. Yes you do not pay any provincial taxes there.. but that is where the economic benefit of living there stops.. the costs of land, homes, apartments, food, ELECTRICTY, maintenace, services, education etc., are much higher than in Quebec for a start but the  average salaries in Alberta generally are not any signifcantly higher,  OR ADEQUATE TO PAY THE EXTRA COSTS

 

 

DON’T EVEN THINK FALSELY FOR ONE SECOND that the provincial and municipal  Governments in Alberta have not lied often about the true state   of Alberta’s economy.  Or how long it will take THE Albertan GOVERNMENT TO GET BACK ON IT’S FEET OR WHAT IT WILL DO TO DO SO AS WELL..   https://thenonconformer.wordpress.com/2009/07/02/albertas-surprise-recession/
 

It is a fact the Alberta government helped to mislead the false notion that Alberta was A PLACE TO GET RICH, THAT WORKERS AND BUSINESS PERSONS CAN MAKE AN EASY QUICK FAST BUCK THERE, especially since there are no provincial sales taxes in Alberta.. MANY’ PEOPLE GOT THE FALSE OPINION AS A RESULT THAT THERE WERE PLENTY OF RICH PEOPLE IN ALBERTA THESE DAYS.. likely only those working for the oil and gas industries, and not the rest.. in reality for the salary difference are not much greater than those in Quebec and Ontario  for the average Joe.. but the actual costs of living is a lot, lot  higher overall.. In their false pride they have done many stupid things in Alberta, the leaders now as well.. they despised the poor people, they abuse the ordinary citizens too.. they lied, slandered others… so it should come as no surprise they too are now reaping what they sow.. facing an unexpected big recession.. many still lie as to how long this recession will last too..  But there is still it seems a sucker born every minute, people still trying to get rich fast who flock to Alberta and get really disappointed at it’s reality. 

Premier Stelmach says Alberta’s revenues will take two or three years to recover   EDMONTON – Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach is predicting it will take two or three years for the province’s cash flow to recover after its energy windfall evaporated over the course of the last year. Alberta is now facing a record budget deficit in the $7 billion range this year. He said Albertans need to prepare themselves for belt-tightening measures, although he refused to offer specifics. 
 
Thus it shouldn’t come as a surprise that it will take years for the province to recover from the economic downturn.

 Anyway the wise people knew that this day of the Albertan recession was coming, when the oil prices would drop again, for history repeats itself, even like it did in the 80’s in Alberta too.

 I HAD ALSO WRITTEN BEFORE AND SAID THAT BETTER MANAGEMENT OF THE HEALTH CARE WAS NEEDED, AND THAT RALPH KLEIN WOULD LIVE TO REGRET HE SO READILY GAVE THE DOCTORS A BIG RAISE IN ALBERTA NOW TOO.

I   spoke to a finishing carpenter  who had just now left Alberta cause he could not afford to live in Alberta, to pay for his children’s education, cause Alberta is too costly to live in still.. too costly to raise his  children in Alberta even though he now had no  problem in finding a job. 

In spite of a growing, deepening Albertan  recession the most recent  growth makes Calgary , 1/3 the size of Montreal, is the third-largest municipality in Canada ?  Now according to the latest statistics   Toronto (2,631,725 people in 2007) and Montreal (1,620,693 in 2006) had more people. Ottawa (898,150 in 2008) and Edmonton (782,439 in 2009) rounded out the top five.  However, if one uses census estimates from 2008 for metropolitan areas — which rightfully do include the immediate  surrounding suburbs — then the Calgary Region falls to fifth, behind Toronto (5,531,263), Montreal (3,750,540), Vancouver (2,271,224) and Ottawa (1,198,668).  Calgary (1,182,446) is unique  for having the vast majority of its population live in the actual municipality, and not in surrounding suburbs. It has no suburbs because it is a mostly new city basically. That is why it is also costly as the roads, sewers, are mostly new too. Calgary only has 60,000 more residents than Edmonton (1,124,163) and it makes a lot of false noise in that fact too cause it wants to attract much needed capital investors for non existing industrial, commercial aspects.. There basically are only 2 large cities in Alberta, Calgary and Alberta, and a handful of smaller towns.. Alberta has some of the biggest liars, spin doctors in Canada for the main cities are desperately seeking more  revenues, and capital investors and anyway they can get them now too even by lies, distortions. There is not much industrial, Manufacturing business in Alberta due to the shortage of labor and skilled persons, and high operating costs. People in Calgary and Alberta do often dream of becoming rich ,  but it is a far away dream when you consider the high costs of living there and the uncertainty of holding onto a job too.
 
 CBC.ca –  Alberta has been particularly hard-hit by recession-fed job losses, with young people and unemployed men claiming federal Employment Insurance benefits in near record numbers, Statistics Canada said Tuesday.

 I had also now worked in Syncrude Fort McMurray as a Projects Engineer as well and with Dominion Bridge Calgary too. I was also a Remax realtor, so I know the real p[icture, cost of living in Calgary Alberta and HOW DIRTY ALBERTA POLITICS NOW STILL IS.

” Today, oil has dropped to $70, natural gas has plummeted to$3.84, that surplus has become a deficit of $852 million–and Iris Evans is on vacation in Europe.”

History as usual repeats itself even in Alberta. Predicable, cyclic  Bust takes still Alberta by surprise  today ? ” There’s a tiny park in downtown Calgary that is a stark reminder of everything that went wrong in Alberta after the boom of the 1980s and seems to be happening all over again.  The park is right next to the Bank of Montreal’s 41-storey office tower. It was supposed to be the site of a second tower that was cancelled when the bank realized the boom was over and it wouldn’t need all those offices in Western Canada after all. Twenty years later, the price of oil and gas has nose dived again and major projects are about to be cancelled or capped.  Just last week, developers of what is slated to be the tallest building in Western Canada declared that they need $1.1 billion to keep the project going. There is already a square-block hole in the ground and a forest of girders and cranes on-site in the heart of downtown Calgary, but the future home of EnCana Corporation is desperately trying to arrange construction financing in a tight credit market.  Building permits on five other large projects are set to expire because of inactivity. In some cases, the city has had to seal empty construction pits because the developers have pulled the plug.  You would think that in a city, and a province, that has experienced more than a few booms and busts over the past 80 years some sort of common sense would have evolved about how to thrive over the long term in such an economy. But it seems both the private sector and the government are easily blinded by their wishful thinking: this boom will last forever and the money will keep rolling in, they keep telling themselves and everyone else. But it never does. So in the same week that the city’s largest construction project was revealed to be in trouble, the finance minister and the premier announced more bad news. The provincial treasury’s projected surplus for 2008-2009 dwindled from $8.5 billion to $2 billion because of declining oil and gas prices and will likely dwindle even further. Plans for new roads, schools and hospitals are now on hold.  Premier Ed Stelmach also revealed that he is deferring a new royalty regime – which was have to added more than $1.4 billion a year to provincial coffers – because it’s simply the wrong time to increase taxes and risk a further slowdown of the petroleum industry.  No doubt he wishes former premier Ralph Klein had increased royalties years ago when the industry was awash in profits. None of this would really matter if the provincial government had actually prepared for the bust during the boom by saving some of its billions of dollars in bounty.  But it didn’t. Instead it spent billions on infrastructure when the cost of labour and materials was skyrocketing; at one point it issued $400 cheques to every man, woman and child in Alberta, a $1.4 billion giveaway; and it cut taxes or kept them low. Alberta still has The Heritage Savings Trust Fund established by former premier Peter Lougheed but it is only worth $15.8 billion. Norway, by contrast, has managed to squirrel away $350 billion since 1991. Stephen Harper’s Conservatives have also managed to whittle away billion dollar surpluses. Perhaps they also thought the boom would last forever. Or perhaps all those Alberta Conservatives simply forgot about the famous bumper sticker from the 1980s that read: “Please God, let there be another oil boom. I promise not to piss it away this time.”  ” http://www.thestar.com/comment/article/541627   

NOW THE Albertan “Gov’t peddles fear to make us buy cuts http://www.edmontonjournal.com/news/peddles+fear+make+cuts/1751928/story.html

One year ago the price of oil was $143 a barrel, natural gas was $13.53, the provincial surplus was forecast at$1.6 billion–and Alberta Finance Minister Iris Evans promised “to make use of the revenues while they are available to us.”

Not that I’m begrudging the finance minister an opportunity to escape after overseeing the biggest economic reversal in Alberta history. If she’s got time, she can pick up some suitable shoes over there to wear for the next provincial budget day. Perhaps a pair of clogs. Something simple, rigid and hollow–a symbol of the government’s economic planning that got us into this mess.

And I use the word “planning” loosely.

The government didn’t have a plan unless you consider shovelling money out the back door as fast as it came in the front to be a plan. “Making use of the revenues” meant spending the revenues. When times were good it outspent every other province in the country on a per-capita basis. It may have been a Conservative government in name, but its spending was liberal, in every sense of the word. Many Albertans told them to save more, even the Liberals.

And just about everybody from the Wildrose Alliance to the Taxpayers’ Federation to the NDP are now saying “told you so.” This is not 20/20 hindsight, either.

Various groups, including one of the government’s own creations called the Financial Management Commission, were telling the government as far back as 2002 it had to save more money during the good times. Granted, Ralph Klein was in charge back then and he responded by ratcheting up spending and giving away $1.4 billion in Ralphbucks. But the Conservatives under Ed Stelmach have been having trouble with the “s” word as well. “Savings” might have seven characters, but it’s always been something of a four-letter word around the government caucus.

You might be telling yourself that the government under Stelmach at least is trying to be more transparent than it was under Klein. The government certainly isn’t holding back when it comes to releasing bad economic news.

Health Minister Ron Liepert held a news scrum with reporters on Tuesday to make sure they were aware Alberta Health Services would run a$1-billion deficit this year.

“I don’t want to leave the impression that the billion dollars that is projected in this current year’s deficit is going to be made up,” said Liepert. “That is a billion-dollar deficit that they are projecting this year.” To make sure we knuckleheads in the media got it, he repeated “a billion dollars” twice more in the next few sentences.

When Treasury Board president Lloyd Snelgrove held a news conference on Tuesday to announce the government’s final numbers for the 2008-09 budget, the first “highlight” on the news release was the $852-million deficit.

In delivering the news Snelgrove looked a little beaten up, like somebody had thrown his puppy under a bus. He repeated sombre predictions from Premier Stelmach that natural gas prices–key to the provincial treasury–will likely be taking a beating for a few more years. However, is it that bad?When you look at the past year’s deficit it’s not really an$852-million deficit at all. It was really a$2.1-billion surplus that was turned into a deficit because the Heritage Savings Trust Fund took a $3-billion wallop due to the stock market collapse.

Imagine your $50,000 RRSP lost half its value last year; that isn’t really a$25,000 loss until you cash it in. But in the world of Alberta government accounting that $3-billion paper loss was added to a $2.1-billion surplus, giving us an $852-million deficit.

A skeptic would say they’re deliberately magnifying their losses. Why?

Ralph Klein liked to say it was easier governing in bad times than good. In bad times he could tell special interest groups, unions and anyone else who relied on government funds: “There is no more money.”

These are the same people who, coincidentally, were invited into closed-door meetings last week with Treasury Board president Snelgrove, who outlined in great detail the sad picture of the province’s finances. He asked for their help figuring out how to come up with $2 billion by cutting government costs or increasing government revenue.

Snelgrove didn’t talk about rollbacks or layoffs, but he didn’t have to. They were being softened up for more bad news in the future. Imagine Snelgrove as the U. S. air force, his audience as Baghdad and it’s 2003. It’s the shock and awe of Alberta budgeting.

To emphasize its pessimistic message, the government is no longer rejecting out of hand the notion of a provincial sales tax. Snelgrove said a five-per-cent tax could bring in as much $8 billion. He knows many Albertans will recoil at the idea, but he also knows that maybe now they’ll start taking the gloomy predictions seriously. It’ll be easier for the government to say “no” when people come looking for money. And nobody will laugh when Iris Evans wears her new clogs next budget day”

I REMEMBER WHEN MANY ARROGANT ALBERTANS, POLITICIANS  USED TO FALSELY BOAST ON THE NET ABOUT THEIR PROSPERITY.. and I would reply they need to be really now more considerate of the poor people and the rest of Canada for they too will ONE DAY  be on social aid, EVEN asking other Canadians to help them.. it is funny how reality  comes to pass with time even in Alberta.
 
REVENUE GEREATING TRAFFIC TICKETS ARE ESCALATING TOO  IN   the province TRYING TO  recover from the BAD economic downturn. THE POLICE, RCMP, MINISTERS, GOVERNMENT CONSULTANTS THESE DAYS, IMMIGRANT CONSULTANTS TOO  IT SEEMS , SEEM TO BE ANOTHER WORD FOR ABUSERS, THIEVES, LIARS CROOKS. SO WE ALL NEED TO DEAL WITH IT MORE EFFECTIVELY NOW TOO.
  
 
“Traffic rules account for most of the contact by average citizens with law enforcement and the courts.  Enforcement of laws which are widely perceived as unreasonable and unfair generates disrespect and even contempt toward those who make and enforce those laws.”
 
Traffic lights safety. A number of studies have shown that by simply increasing the length of “amber” or “yellow” lights, dangerous intersections can be made safe.  “By increasing the length of yellow lights you can cut down on the amount of violations and accidents at an intersection”  Studies show that lengthening the amber light gives drivers more time to make s  choice and more time to brake.  But in some cash-strapped communities, shorter yellow lights at intersections equipped with red-light cameras means more tickets — and that means more money.  The use of the cameras needs to be monitored so drivers aren’t taken advantage of.  “There also  needs to be a national standard for the length of amber lights.”  A study released  the Texas Transportation Institute concluded that extending a yellow light by 1.5 seconds would decrease red-light-running by at least 50 percent.
 
And the insurance companies TEND TO have a false, vested monetary interest in the success of the Traffic cameras, traffic tickets. “The insurance industry  profits from the cameras and the having  more cameras means more tickets being issued so then they can raise the drivers’ insurance rates.” The traffic engineers who install these cameras are all-too-frequently tempted to reduce the amount of time that the traffic light stays “yellow” before turning “red.” Precisely because it will likely increase the number of drivers who run red lights, this alteration allows the surveillance system attached to the traffic light to catch more red-light runners, and thus generate more revenues for the state (see below). Unfortunately, indeed, tragically, altering the timing of the traffic light also causes more rear-end collisions, and thus more injuries to drivers and their passengers.  It seems very likely that the real reward for the increasing use of traffic cameras is not better safety on the streets, but higher revenues
If the”  photo enforcement tickets can put a point on your driving record.  So, they have to have a good picture of your face.  .” A picture of your license plate doesn’t establish that you did the crime – it only establishes that your car did it, and anyone could have been driving your car.  And if your name is on the ticket but it’s not your face in the photo, you don’t have to identify the person driving. Simply ask the judge, “Are you sure it’s me?” Or you could say, more formally, “I request dismissal of this ticket as there isn’t proof beyond a reasonable doubt that I was driving the vehicle.”  The preceding two phrases are not testimony, so give you the added advantage that if the judge asks you, “Well then, who is it?” you can tell him that you have not agreed to testify.
Red Light Camera Tickets in Ontario. Red light camera tickets are traffic tickets that are issued as a result of a traffic camera being placed at an intersection to photograph vehicles who enter the intersection after the traffic signal has turned red. Upon being photographed traveling through the intersection on a red traffic signal, the municipality will issue a notice to the owner of the vehicle. The violation notice will have a picture of the vehicle showing the speed it was traveling, and that the traffic signal was red when the vehicle entered. The penalty for a Red light Camera Ticket is 180 dollars. There is no accumulation or loss of demerit points for this ticket. Nor is a record kept with the Ministry of Transportation, or available to the insurance companies.  Red light camera tickets will not affect your insurance rates.

TALLAHASSEE, Fla., Aug. 25 (UPI) — Plaintiffs in lawsuits against red-light traffic cameras in Florida towns say the devices violate the principle of uniform traffic laws. Lawyers argue the cameras violate the principle that the lawbreaking driver is supposed to get the ticket. Because tickets are handed out based only on the license plate number, the owner of the vehicle gets the ticket no matter who was behind the wheel.  http://www.upi.com/Top_News/2009/08/25/Lawsuits-challenge-traffic-cameras/UPI-54871251239776/

 
Now I have said it for over 3 decades in wrting to all too so Call it what you want but it is not about public safety, for it is  a self employment, empire  building, false money grab, revenue generation, hidden taxes.. for if  the cops, the mad RCMP  were now really worried about public safety THEY WOULD FIRSTLY ARREST THEIR OWN KIND, THE BAD COPS WHO OFTEN DRIVE HOME DRUNK AFTER WORK, COMING HOME FROM THE POLICE TAVERN, and they would ALSO go after the people who drive reckless, fail to stop at the stop signs, traffic stop lights, and the impaired drunken drivers, the unsafe cars whose brakes are squealing cause they need to be repaired.. etc.,,
 
Now we know that more people have accident due to road rage, impaired driving, driving under the influence of drugs, alcohol  over speeding too and we still do need to review how much time and resources do the police deal with that firstly? ”   http://anyonecare.wordpress.com/2008/10/11/albertas-crooked-cops-rcmp-included/ 
and read what I think about Alberta’s too often bad cops too…
  

 

In reality the too often self serving, money hungry, promotional and empire oriented police, and their superiors, bad justice ministers, bad politicians  really do not care about the citizens good welfare but only their own.. ANOTHER CASH GRAB.. The Calgary Parking Authority is expanding its hold on the inner city by starting to charge for parking on more than 20 blocks of the Beltline.  CALGARY AND EDMONTON POLICE ISSUE MORE TRAFFIC TICKETS OVER ANY OTHER CITIES  IN CANADA AND  FOR DECADES NOW TOO!  Alberta’s TOO MANY crooked cops, RCMP included.. A blatant false  tax on the motorist – Speeding tickets.. https://thenonconformer.wordpress.com/2008/09/16/call-it-what-you-want-but-it-is-not-about-safety/   
   

 

There are only 2  major towns in Alberta, Edmonton and Calgary, and that’s it, but plenty of bad cops too, basically these insignificant cities  are the sole oasis in a large wilderness or mostly vacant land.. …. there are  not many small towns next in Alberta or an overall big population as well. These Major cities still  are support service towns, meaning mostly made up of homes, schools, hospitals, food stores, a few office buildings, oil and gas  corporate headquarters, and very little direct manufacturing. Watch out the cops, judges there,  tend to be mean and nasty, parking and traffic ticket quota oriented, enforcing the letter of the law over the spirit of the law. Sadly some of the news media  still propagates the lie that Alberta is a place of  plenty of good  paying jobs, and  high salaries. Now it is understandable that business persons and politicians lie a lot already but these  distorted facts about the true nature of Alberta are made to  encourage their much needed capital investors to a province that lacks investors, for that matter it even still lacks any manufacturing industry especially since the cost of labor is too high, the cost of electricity is too high, there is a lack of skilled persons to hire, and the basic cost of living is much too high, the costs, homes, apartments unaffordable for many new comers as well.  Most of Alberta is farms and very costly single family dwellings, for  there are few apartments built, never mind  even available, and the present consumer prices, cost of living, hidden taxes too are ridiculous. Their support services now are not that great not even their hotels, restaurants, hospitals, school sand the insurance, and the dentist costs are outrageous too.There is no real consumer protection in Alberta, nor rental control basically in Alberta where  the Landlord can jack up prices any time and as high as he wants. The population of Alberta is too low to support any major sales, marketing programs to the consumers , and most of the people have very big home mortgages so their goods purchase power is low.. most people are not friendly, the mostly bad churches now included,  they are grumpy rather too.
   
 
Now even in simple common sense now too all civil and public servants, managers, professionals, polticians even in Alberta need to:
-practice their profession with integrity, honesty, truthfulness and adherence to the absolute obligation to safeguard the public trust, the employer’s good reputation as well 
-act according to the highest goals and visions of their organizations, professions, clients and their own consciences  in practice they also need to put their philanthropic mission above their personal gain;
-even to inspire others through their own sense of dedication and high purpose
-clearly also to also  improve their professional knowledge and skills, so that their performance will better serve all others
– demonstrate real, visible concern for the interests and well-being of all individuals affected by all of their actions
-value the privacy, freedom of choice and interests of all those affected by their actions
and also  treat all people with dignity and respect
adhere to the spirit as well as the letter of all applicable laws and regulations
– show real compliance  within their organizations adherence to all applicable laws and regulations
clearly avoid even the appearance of any criminal offense or professional misconduct, do all things above board, visibly  beyond any ill repute as well 
-bring credit to their organization and    profession by their public demeanor
encourage all of their subordinates, colleagues to embrace and practice solely  ethical principles and standards
-comply with and be fully in reality aware of the codes of ethics promulgated by other professional organizations  and others 
 
 
Alberta • Civil Service Here come the cuts Published July 30, 2009    Even as Ed Stelmach was uttering, “As long as I’m premier of this province, there will be no tax increases. Simple,” we’re certain visions of a long-treasured list of cuts were dancing in his head. And the first on that list, apparently, was the civil service, which is now under a hiring freeze. Again, in Stelmach’s own words: “I don’t want to underestimate the difficulties we’re going to face as Albertans. We may go back to the same strategies we used in the early 1990s,”  Even though Slippery Stelmach was presented to voters in March 2006 as change from within the party, he was a cabinet minister during the slash-and-cut Klein years, not to mention a member of the Deep Six, a group of fiscally ultra-conservative Tories. At a time when even Stephen Harper has endorsed a record deficit to keep the recession at bay, Stelmach is still clinging to his ideological background. Albertans will suffer for it. http://www.seemagazine.com/article/news/comment/rewind0730/ 
 

“Albertans First” is just another one of those typical bad politicians cons to make people Born in Alberta falsely believe they are being properly looked after, and are better of than the rest of Canada too, all very contrary to the actual reality. It is clearly the politicians and civil and public servants who are firstly looking after themselves mainly here too.. 

Alberta • Children’s Services  Embarrassing lack of responsibility Published July 30, 2009  The Department of Children’s Services was under fire again this week, this time from the courts. Court of Appeal Justice Jean Côté has called for an investigation into the department, and has rejected an appeal by director Richard Ouellet, who has been charged with contempt of court. The department failed to follow a previous court order to return a boy in its care to his foster mother. Although this is the most recent problem to pop up, it’s hardly the most shocking. In March, NDP MLA Rachel Notley brought to light the story of a 15-month-old boy who received life-threatening head injuries while in a foster home.  The NDP also released reports from the provincial children’s advocate that were delayed in reaching the public. As the opposition parties have requested, a full public inquiry into the department is necessary, as is the creation of an independent children’s advocate. http://www.seemagazine.com/article/news/comment/rewind0730/

Indecent haste on Alberta Hospital Edmonton Journal – A disturbing pattern has emerged under the Stelmach imprimatur. When it comes to hatching major health-care initiatives that could be controversial, a media release is transmitted late on a Friday, as if no one will notice.

Mental health care in need of miracle Canoe.ca

 

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