Alberta

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Their flag is boring

Alberta is a Canadian province filthy fucking rich from oil money, and complain about having to contribute some of it back in equalization payments to Quebec. This oil is extracted from bitumen and the extraction process kills pretty much everything for miles kilometres around.[1] This greed for oil and disregard for the environment, coupled with the extremely conservative (you know, for Canada) stance of the province, has given Alberta the lovely title of "Canada's Texas."

The Progressive Conservatives have been in power for 40 years straight and counting. They essentially run the province like a fiefdom since the opposition parties only hold 26 of 87 seats in the legislature. The 2004 and 2008 provincial elections both had a lower-than-50% voter turnout since everyone knew the Conservatives would win (yet again). The latter gave them seventy-three seats, while the Liberals received eight and the NDP got two.

In June of 2008, Premier Ed Stelmach gave himself a $54,000 raise. His phone rang off the hook from people complaining, but he didn't care since the majority of Albertans would vote him in again next time. He was right.

Crazed Albertan libertarian gun nuts also make the world's most paranoid Unix-based computer operating system.[2] Eh, Canada?

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[edit] Signs of hope?

After years of being Canada's most right-wing major city, Calgary recently shocked the hell out of just about everyone by electing a Liberal academic Muslim as mayor.[3] Equally shocking has been the Progressive Conservative party's recent apparent drift towards the centre of the spectrum, with the election of "Red Tory" Allison Redford as leader following the resignation of Stelmach.[4] And still more impressive, the Alberta electorate do not seem inclined to punish the PCs for this leftward drift; indeed, they steamrolled their main ultra-conservative opposition, the Wildrose Alliance,[5] in the 2012 election. Now start doing something about your "Colossal Fossil" GHG emissions ratings and we'll talk.

Given that most of the population of Calgary comes from British Columbia these days, perhaps these changes shouldn't be all that surprising. And it's going to turn into quite the culture war: the percentage of non-religious to Christians in Alberta is now the third-largest in Canuckistan. (And now you know why Stephen Harper is in full gears against Quebec's anti-multiculturalism charter.[6])

[edit] Now you're creeping us out

In 2013, Nenshi was given a second term alongside Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson, a 35-year-old pro-environmentalist (and a Star Trek fan). Both won with supermajorities.[7]

[edit] See also

[edit] Footnotes

  1. Skeptical Science
  2. Specifically, OpenBSD, which is obsessed with having as few security holes as possible in the default installation. (It originally forked from NetBSD, which has its own obsession that involves running on as many hardware platforms as possible.)
  3. OMG, a Muslim! If he were also gay, he would be the Tea Party's worst nightmare made flesh. His participation in Pride celebrations is probably enough though.
  4. Alberta PCs pick a new premier, National Post
  5. You'd wish we were joking.
  6. Quebec's values charter sends politicians scrambling, CBC
  7. What in the fuck
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