Last week it was revealed that Premier Ed Stelmach left on a vacation to Portugal as flood levels were dramatically rising in south east Alberta.
While Premier Stelmach relaxed in Portugal, no opposition leader – David Swann, Danielle Smith, Brian Mason – took advantage of the Premier’s absence. Was it responsible for the opposition leaders not to show up as to not interfere with any of the emergency responses or was it a missed opportunity to present a political alternative to a region of Alberta that is growing into a hotspot of alienation and local discontent with the Premier?
11 replies on “missed opportunity or fertile soil in medicine hat?”
That would have depended on what they did when they got there. IF they showed up and proceeded to soapbox about the Tories then they would have been hammered for being politically opportunist. If they got there and just listened to people and gathered information that would have been a smart thing to do. People like it when you listen to them, they like it a lot less when they feel you’re using their natural disaster to further your political aims.
Darren: I guess I could have expanded. What you wrote is exactly what I was getting at. It has to be more than soapbox opportunism. What I’m talking about is demonstrating real leadership and the ability to actually listen to Albertans while doing it.
Who cares. Ed went on vacation. Everyone’s entitled to a week or two off with their family. Next topic.
hey wait a minute are you the real Joe Albertan?
Seems like going to listen to people who are going through rough times would be politically sound. Vacations are deserved but you just wonder on the timing of taking such vacation.
There’s a fine line between being perceived as opportunistic and caring. This is definitely a missed opportunity, but given how tone deaf the Libs are this is likely a win for them given how badly they likely would have managed it.
As for who the real Joe Albertan is, I’ve officially moved this question up in my list of priorities. It’s now officially ahead of “things to do with my sock lint”, but still below “ways to enhance my Bea Arthur nude photo collection”.
You have a collection of nude Bea Arthur pics?
Wow… I’ll trade you Betty-White-in-a-thong for one… and my entire dust bunny collection.
Clearly a missed opportunity. Not only should it have been a chance to listen to the people there, but to perhaps mobilize some aid. No reason why that couldn’t have ended in a speech that asked why Alberta’s Premier was in Portugal and not in Medicine Hat. I think its a fair question.
And I’m sorry, if you’re in public office, you’re not entitled to a vacation while there is a disaster of epic proportions going on in your province.
Yes I am the real Joe Albertan. The person at joealbertan.blogspot.com has hacked my account and keeps making stupid comments in a futile attempt to discredit me.
I am the real Joe Albertan.
David Swann was here (yes, it was 6 weeks after the Flood) but Stelmach too had only been here for 4 hours 5 weeks after. The timing, politically, was actually quite good. Stelmach had announced $20 Million for Southern Alberta Disaster Relief, and people still homeless and in shock believed him at first…but now they are getting rejected, or paltry cheques and are very angry. David packed the Irvine General Store )homemade pie and ice cream was served) and he listened to the stories – the 911 call made as the dams began to break upstream on these metre wide creeks as huge amounts of water were let from St. Mary’s irrigation…the people of Irvine would have had 6 hours if the RCMP (in Red Deer’s call centre) had actually acted. Sleeping children in basements were rescued, no one died in the flash flood though helicopters were required to rescue many. The stories are horific – Dr. Swann was horified at the health risks still looming and the environmental problems of raw sewage still in basements, and barrels of ag chemicals washed from farms up stream now leaking into ground water near peoples’ homes. The worst – a family of with four small children and no sewage back up insurance living in a small motor home – got a cheque for $1900 – and that is all they will get. They were told to sue their insurance company! Only a handful have had any inspections – thank God for the Red Cross, Samaritans Purse and the City of Medicine Hat (who sent out some inspectors/engineers). PC MLAs got heckled in the Parade and Eddie decided to “sit it out and watch” – too scared to meet the people. David got more than polite aplause.
I’m not surprised to see none of the opposition ‘leaders’ or the Premier failing to show any empathy for Southern Albertans. These tall foreheads are concerned with only one thing…personal electoral/political gain
That is why Swann and his Annex elitists will fade into obscurity in 2012.