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Time to fight the greedy in Alberta

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  • Time to fight the greedy in Alberta

    Time to fight the greedy in Alberta

    Fri, October 19, 2007
    By Jeremy Loome


    Article link: http://www.edmontonsun.com/Comment/Commentary/2007/10/19/4587942.html

    Have you ever see so many high-priced sports cars?

    Alberta's boom is on display on its streets and boulevards: there's a Porsche spotted every other block and Hummers are as common as VW Bugs.

    Good times are here.

    Despite such opulence, middle-class families can't afford housing; food banks are flooded; roads and schools are crumbling; volunteer agencies are near collapse; social workers can't afford to stay in their field.

    It's an ugly picture. And somewhere along the line, something has gone wrong.

    Alberta is being divided by greed.

    Next week, Premier Ed Stelmach will respond to a report calling for the public to get a fair share of energy revenues from rich companies that depend on public resources. The address will come after months of scare mongering by those companies.

    We should fight back.

    It's time to curb the greedy mentality they are trying to foment, one that segments of Alberta society accept as inevitable.

    It's time to consider how each of us balances personal gain and social commitment, how we can be good providers but also good people. We need to encourage growth, but not eliminate our middle class and our values doing it.

    It's also time, with an election near, to consider whether the Conservatives deserve a chance to fix this imbalance.

    After all, life is a balancing act. We can oppose wasteful big government and still realize governments do some things well.

    We can keep kids active without scheduling them 24/7. We can reward ourselves with a new car - but it doesn't have to cost more than a house.

    And we can acknowledge that social progress should trump social status, that sometimes big business is wrong and the little guy is right.

    Mostly, we can rediscover values conservatives once cherished: civility; consideration for those less fortunate or toiling in necessary-but-unprofitable fields; individual enterprise; the importance of neighbourhoods.

    And we can demand government reflect those values.

    Our collective response to the government on these issues, beginning with the review, can set the stage for a balance between what we want as individuals and the needs of a truly great society.

    We should accept nothing less.
    - 30 -

  • #2
    I found the so-called rally at the Legislature rather funny. Something is very, very strange when all the signs seem to all be 'handwritten' in identical format.

    I wonder if the oil companies provided bonuses to employees that showed up.
    LA today, Athens tomorrow. I miss E-town.

    Comment


    • #3
      http://www.quattroenergy.ca/Grassroo...rs%20Rally.pdf

      http://www.quattroenergy.ca/Royalty.html

      That pretty much says it all right there.

      Comment


      • #4
        I guess the following question is in the process of being answered:

        Who runs the Province of Alberta? Big Oil or the Provincial Government ("by the people, for the people").

        I suspect that we already know the answer!

        What I find particularly intriguing is the lack of philanthropy exhibited by these companies (with some exceptions!). For example, why is the new downtown arena not being built by Suncor? And why aren't we getting a Husky Art Gallery? And those silly signature signs that will soon adorn the major highways leading into the city? Surely, these would be small change to Halliburton?

        The truth is that our province is being raped by Big Oil.
        The Animals' Choice: Mayor of Elk Island

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Elk Islander
          ...What I find particularly intriguing is the lack of philanthropy exhibited by these companies (with some exceptions!)...
          what i find particularly intriguing is the assumption behind your diatribe? perhaps fort saskatchewan should send that million dollar contribution to their rec centre back to dow? perhaps the glenrose hospital should send back the multimillion dollars they have received from syncrude? when was the last time you perused the donar lists at the u of a or the stollery or the heart clinic nait or a thousand and one other recipients of corporate as well as personal philanthropy from the united way to the bissell centre? personally, i find your bracketed "with some exceptions" to be a self serving disclaimer at best.

          i will be lucky enough to attend at least three fundraisers this month for autism, prostate cancer and diabetes research and will personally witness and contribute towards the raising of millions and millions of dollars of charitable contributions. where on earth do you think the where-with-all for that comes from?

          please don't take this as a "defense" of big oil or of past or present royalty proposals - big oil does not need my defense and for what it's worth i don't believe they are paying enough. but if you have a position to put forward, do it. if you have suggestions to make, make them. but lay off the slander by way of innuendo and suspicions.

          do you honestly expect us to think that if suncor or husky or halliburton donated more towards an arena, the art gallery or highway signage you would think better of them or of the province of alberta? how hypocritical would that be?
          "If you did not want much, there was plenty." Harper Lee

          Comment


          • #6
            Getting this thread back to Jeremy Loome's article which I view as a call to action.

            It's time to consider how each of us balances personal gain and social commitment, how we can be good providers but also good people. We need to encourage growth, but not eliminate our middle class and our values doing it.
            Social commitment, consideration for all and values need to be thought about and worked on lest we become a materialistic province of "haves" and "have-nots" with no civility, no sense of altruism or community.

            I know what I am doing to ensure this becomes a province I want and one that I will remain proud to call home -- what about you?

            Comment


            • #7
              [quote="djgirl"]Getting this thread back to Jeremy Loome's article which I view as a call to action.

              It's time to consider how each of us balances personal gain and social commitment, how we can be good providers but also good people. We need to encourage growth, but not eliminate our middle class and our values doing it.
              Social commitment, consideration for all and values need to be thought about and worked on lest we become a materialistic province of "haves" and "have-nots" with no civility, no sense of altruism or community.

              I know what I am doing to ensure this becomes a province I want and one that I will remain proud to call home -- what about you?[/quote]
              as am i djgirl and i consider both of us to be "good people". but that "balance" that is being talked about does not come from being a "have-not" and that comes from personal experience. it was not long enough ago to not be well remembered and from that experience i can certainly say that it is a lot easier maintaining that balance when food and shelter and transportation are not the overriding daily preoccupation they become when you cannot afford them. as uncharitable as it sounds, it requires a modicum of prosperity to be charitable. i am not talking here about volunteering and mentoring and personal contributions of time and effort to creating a better society but about the kinds of philanthropy that do require at least a modicum of wealth. it is presumptuous of Jeremy to presume that what he chooses to perceive as opulence precludes balance in and of itself - if anyone thinks they know me solely by what i drive (whether porsche or hummer or vw bug), then they are more shallow than someone i want to know. and Elk Islander's attempt to blame a lack of balance in our lives on "Big Oil" - Vancouver and Winnipeg and St. John and Amsterdam and Glasgow are all striving to find that same balance. if we don't have it, we need to look in the mirror, not blame others.
              "If you did not want much, there was plenty." Harper Lee

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by MylesC
                I found the so-called rally at the Legislature rather funny. Something is very, very strange when all the signs seem to all be 'handwritten' in identical format.

                I wonder if the oil companies provided bonuses to employees that showed up.
                they all got their regular pay to show up. kinda takes the edge of their self-centered 'rally'.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by kcantor
                  It is presumptuous of Jeremy to presume that what he chooses to perceive as opulence precludes balance in and of itself - if anyone thinks they know me solely by what i drive (whether porsche or hummer or vw bug), then they are more shallow than someone i want to know.
                  I am just curious, so what do you drive? Obviously this thread has stomped on a sensitive nerve........ I am just curious, and not trying to judge
                  The Animals' Choice: Mayor of Elk Island

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Time to get out the rulers?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Elk Islander
                      Originally posted by kcantor
                      It is presumptuous of Jeremy to presume that what he chooses to perceive as opulence precludes balance in and of itself - if anyone thinks they know me solely by what i drive (whether porsche or hummer or vw bug), then they are more shallow than someone i want to know.
                      I am just curious, so what do you drive? Obviously this thread has stomped on a sensitive nerve........ I am just curious, and not trying to judge
                      i drive a 1992 four door jaguar. my wife doesn't drive at all.

                      excluding holiday travel, we typically drive less than 10,000 km per year and much of that is work related (and work related does not include commuting although the total does). the jag uses less fuel than we used to feed our camry although that's a life style decision based partly on where we live and work as well as the vehicle.

                      we consume less fuel per annum than our son in his four cylinder honda civic who commutes across town and we haven't even touched on the lifecycle energy cost savings of keeping a fifteen year old car on the road that would still pass current emissions testing if alberta instituted it.

                      for what it's worth, the house it parks at has a high efficiency water tank as well as furnaces and a heat exchanger, argon filled and tinted glazing that's 75% south facing, insulation levels well above code with programmable thermostats and non-combustible siding but no compact flourescent fixtures until they're manufactured without mercury or there's some way to recycle it.

                      judge away to your heart's content if it makes you feel better. just don't think that knowing any of the above gives you any idea as to what kind of "balance" there may or may not be with volunteer work or charity or philanthropy to go along with it.
                      "If you did not want much, there was plenty." Harper Lee

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I am so glad that I don't have to engage in "ruler" comparisons.

                        Mostly because I know that mine is the biggest anyway -- brain that is.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I say we find these greedy people and we take their stuff.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by djgirl
                            I am so glad that I don't have to engage in "ruler" comparisons.

                            Mostly because I know that mine is the biggest anyway -- brain that is.
                            Do not! My hat size is 9... yes, 9... beat that for a big brain LOLOL
                            Yay, summertime!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by microbus
                              Originally posted by djgirl
                              I am so glad that I don't have to engage in "ruler" comparisons.

                              Mostly because I know that mine is the biggest anyway -- brain that is.
                              Do not! My hat size is 9... yes, 9... beat that for a big brain LOLOL
                              ^ Ha ha, good one!

                              Comment

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