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  • Ralph Klein

    I haven't lived in Edmonton for too long, but Ralph Klein was/is not very popular in Edmonton. Curious to know what was the reasoning other than the fact that he was Calgary mayor, and how other premiers were towards Edmonton.
    The world is full of kings and queens, who blind your eyes then steal your dreams.
    It's heaven and hell!

  • #2
    i think he is vindictive, rude person whose only talent was to get to and stay in power. he showed no compassion. he was a poor role model with his drinking and other inexcusable behaviour. he favoured Calgary, no question in my mind. That goes beyond him having been their mayor in the past. he effectively tried to shift power there through all sorts of policies, promotion, and financial aid. he does not understand (through policy at least) the value of education, the value of public health care and the value of social care. he admittedly run a populist government. his favourite expression about "seeing where the parade was going and getting in front of it" says it all. the man had no imagination and no plan for running the province beyond taking credit for things that were already taking place. he was a very poor representative of this province and I thank god he is no longer the premier. i am sure I have more to say, but I'll leave it to others for now.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by grish
      i think he is vindictive, rude person
      That also describes a significant number of contributors to C2E.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by dwells
        Originally posted by grish
        i think he is vindictive, rude person
        That also describes a significant number of contributors to C2E.
        ok...

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        • #5
          He was a good mayor, an adequate MLA, but as Premier he was in over his head.

          I never liked him because he got elected by promising lower taxes, but then raised user fees for things like driving, health care, and education. So he wasn't really the bargain he portrayed himself to be, because it is still cash out of our pockets.

          That and everything grish said about his character.
          City Centre Airport is to the sky as False Creek is to the ocean.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by grish
            i think he is vindictive, rude person whose only talent was to get to and stay in power. he showed no compassion. he was a poor role model with his drinking and other inexcusable behaviour. he favoured Calgary, no question in my mind. That goes beyond him having been their mayor in the past. he effectively tried to shift power there through all sorts of policies, promotion, and financial aid. he does not understand (through policy at least) the value of education, the value of public health care and the value of social care. he admittedly run a populist government. his favourite expression about "seeing where the parade was going and getting in front of it" says it all. the man had no imagination and no plan for running the province beyond taking credit for things that were already taking place. he was a very poor representative of this province and I thank god he is no longer the premier. i am sure I have more to say, but I'll leave it to others for now.
            You hit the nail on the head grish,the only thing I can add is he was arrogant.

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            • #7
              I don't think history will be particularly kind to Ralph Klein. He was maybe the right person at the right time in the early 90's to step in and significantly cut back spending and balancing the budget, but once that was under control he just kind of wandered around aimlessly with no plan and no purpose. And those 10 years of stagnation are coming back to haunt us in a big way.

              That said, I don't think that he's a bad person, in any way. We could have had a lot worse, like Glen Clarke for example. I don't think you could ever accuse Klein of being dishonest for his own financial benefit.

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              • #8
                the cuts of the early 90's simply transfered the debt from finances to infrastructure. it was a shell game, a disappearing act--now you see it, now you don't. it also created an overt crisis with health and education that the PC's tried to off load on private resources to some success. Basically, they have undermined health care and education and infrastructure and then claimed that to fix everything we need private sector to step in.

                the deregulation of utilities is another multi-billion dollar scandal that hasn't exploded in PC's faces yet simply because they can continue to cover it up with "subsidies" from money that they were so fortunate to get from the rise of oil and gas costs.

                He is not dishonest? What about plagiarism--that paper that he wrote about the Pinochet regime he tried to table in the leg was a bad cut-and-paste job from the internet. Not being caught is not the same as not being dishonest.

                Not a bad person? Getting drunk, throwing money at homeless, throwing a book at a page (while hitting the girl was an accident--the act of throwing it away was childish reaction unbecoming of a premier).

                The history will not be kind to him? People should not have been kind to him in his present.

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                • #9
                  Yes, I don't think anyone should be making excuses for Ralphie. How can anyone defend a man that went to a homeless shelter drunk to berate those with serious financial and psychological problems in the middle of the night? A man that plagiarized entire sections of a university paper and was not thrown out like any other person? A man that admitted to taking a Government plane on a golfing junket to Nova Scotia?

                  Klein was a terrible Premier with no plan for the Province - he didn't 'give a tinker's damn' after all. I am just amazed that people elected him for so long in the rest of the Province because he would have been thrown out anywhere else.

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                  • #10
                    Ralph hated Edmonton. The McDougall Centre in Calgary was the unofficial Legislature during Ralph's reign.

                    Ralph built Calgary a fantastic new 24 floor court house. Nice building.

                    Ralph isn't half the man Lougheed was but both shared a vision for building up Calgary at the expense of Edmonton.

                    Stelmach or whoever wins the election has their work cut out for them in both Edmonton and Calgary cleaning up the mess left behind by the great communicator.

                    Calgary is now, and always has been a city of spoiled rich kids. Even Rod Love, Ralph's buddy and long time conservative advisor to the rich and famous on the right, has crossed sides and is now supporting the Liberals.

                    Ralph reminds me of George W. Let's charm the masses and cozy up to big oil while Rome burns.

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                    • #11
                      The problem is, Calgary actually feels as if they have been cheated large sums of money too, even thought they have had freeways built, a large LRT network, new courthouse... While both cities are trying to make up for the cuts in the 90s to infrastructure, Calgarians need to realize that they were much better off than Edmonton was. Ralph ignored our provincial capital, and I don't think Stelmach has done much better.

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                      • #12
                        He didn't solve anything! He has only made things worse. Us taxpayers were the ones who paid off the debt, course we still have one. He cut money to the cities, & counties & just passed the buck (not literally of course). As far as I'm concerned him & Steve West should be drawn and quartered cause they have sold us out & ruined this once great Province. The guy is an ***ho**
                        Mayor Mandel is a immature childish man

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                        • #13
                          Alberta is one of the richest places on earth, and one of the few debt free ones at that (i.e. our children will not be paying off our current lifestyles). That was not really the case before Ralph took power. I think history will judge him by the ultimate results, not the day to day mistakes or human failings.

                          I was only here at the end of Ralph's reign, when he seemed to have been in a little too long. He has personality though - a folksy charm - love him or loath him, a highly talented politician, and he is honestly human too - with all the good and bad things that go with that.

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                          • #14
                            Alberta's wealth and lack of debt isn't because of Ralph Klein, but despite him. Our economic boom, especially in regards to oil and gas exploration would've shown up on our doorstep no matter who was in power. The only thing is, if someone else was in power, we might have more to show for ourselves.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by etownboarder
                              Our economic boom, especially in regards to oil and gas exploration would've shown up on our doorstep no matter who was in power.
                              The soviet union had terrific natural wealth, but did not go through an economic boom that resulted in wealth for the masses. Outside factors matter, but good management is key too. Clinton, for me, is another example. I don't think he was just "lucky" (just listen to Greenspan), or that his human failings, made him "bad". Ralph contributed to creating one of the most business friendly environments in the world in Alberta. That attracted the investment that has made so many rich. For example, I think our Provincial agencies are better than any. While many want to focus on the negative, it doesn't take a lot of effort to see the positive.

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