Auditor General Calgary-Egmont Fred Dunn Jennifer Pollock Jonathan Denis Lewis Cardinal Mary MacDonald Mel Knight Peter Lougheed Ray Martin Richard Nixon Rick Szostak

dunn’s done. now… more than ever.

Dunn’s done. Auditor General Fred Dunn has announced that he will be stepping down in February 2010.

In 2007, Dunn singled out Energy Minister Mel Knight and the Department of Energy for failing to collect billions of dollars in resource revenues over the past 15 years. In 2009, Dunn’s office announced the delay or cancellation of 27 out of 80 planned system and financial audits due to lack of financial resources. At the time, Calgary-Egmont MLA Jonathan Denis was quoted as justifing the lack of funding to the Auditor General by defending the one-year MLA pay freeze:

“Realistically everybody would like more money, I would like more money, but the reality is we froze our pay cheques this year. This is the first time in 15 years we froze our pay cheques. And similarly we don’t want to be giving extra money to departments where that’s not required.”

Now… more than ever. His ideas may now be marginalized within the party he led to office 38 years ago, but the now Stelmach-led PC Party is seeking to revive fond memories of Peter Lougheed‘s victory over Harry Strom‘s Social Credit Party. The slogan for the November 6-7, 2009 PC leadership review, ‘Now… more than ever,’ appears to be an attempt to remind older supporters of their party’s exciting 1971 slogan: ‘Now!‘ Or maybe I’m wrong and the PCs are actually trying to channel Richard Nixon….

Who’s ready for a federal election? With the exception voters in a couple of ridings, Albertans are going to be far off the political radar in any upcoming federal election. While the Conservatives have already nominated candidates in all 28 ridings, the Liberals and NDP have only officially nominated a couple candidates each (Liberals: Jennifer Pollock in Calgary-West, Mary MacDonald in Edmonton-Centre, Rick Szostak in Edmonton-Sherwood Park. NDP: Lewis Cardinal in Edmonton-Centre and Ray Martin in Edmonton-East). With an election seemingly imminent, expect to hear a lot from the New Obama Party when they hold their caucus retreat in Edmonton in a couple of weeks.

Brian Mason Calgary-Egmont Jonathan Denis Twitter

mla jonathan denis provides an example of how twitter should not be used.

One of the most obvious strengths and weakness of social networks and micro-blogs like Twitter is the ability for users to communicate with a social network in live-time.

A month ago, Twitter became an issue of contention in the Alberta Legislature when Ken Kowalski imposed a blanket ban on the use of electronic devices by MLA on the floor of the Assembly during Question Period. Shortly after his decision, I penned a letter to Speaker Kowalski, asking him to keep an open mind when it came to the limitless potential for Internet and social media as tools to be used to re-connect Albertans with our democratic institutions (I still haven’t received a response). While I agree that MLAs should spend their time paying attention in QP, rather than playing on the Internet, the potential uses of these online communities should not be underestimated.

Yesterday afternoon, during a debate in the Legislature, Calgary-Egmont PC MLA Jonathan Denis (@JonoMLA) provided his colleagues with a perfect example of how Twitter can be misused on the floor of the Assembly. During a debate, Denis posted a tweet Twitter criticizing a colleague in the Assembly (it’s safe to assume that it was directed to NDP leader, and former bus driver, Brian Mason):

Recognizing the ridiculousness of his comment, I posted a response to Denis:

@JonoMLA And the Finance Minister is a retired nurse and piano teacher. What’s your point?

Hours later, when checking to see whether the Calgary-Egmont MLA had replied, I discovered that his comment has been deleted from his Twitter page:

To be fair, I don’t actually believe that Denis has anything against bus drivers. His hyper-partisan comment was likely a knee-jerk reaction to one of the all too common rhetoric-laden statements in the Assembly (it should also be noted that the first-term PC backbencher was only 13-years old when Mason was first elected to Edmonton City Council in 1989).

If used effectively, social networks like Twitter can serve as tools to help engage Albertans with their elected representatives and democratic institutions. Grande Prairie Alderman Bill Given (@BillGiven), MLAs Doug Griffiths (@GriffMLA) and Kent Hehr (@CalgaryBuffalo), and Edmonton City Councillor Don Iveson (@DonIveson) provide Albertans with good examples of elected officials who have begun to use these tools for the purpose of positive citizen engagement.

While the deletion suggests that Jonathan Denis recognized that his comment was in poor taste, it becomes small mistakes like these that make it increasing difficult when trying to convince the vast sea of traditional old-school political thinkers of the important role that these online tools and social networks play in the 21st century. Our elected officials will need to exercise some common sense and maturity if they are serious about employing social networks like Twitter to create an atmosphere of positive engagement with citizens.

Alberta Alliance Calgary-Egmont Cathie Williams Craig Chandler Jonathan Denis Paul Hinman Wild Rose Alliance Wildrose Party

wrap enters stage right.

The Wild Rose Alliance Party (WRAP) was formed this weekend with Paul Hinman as their leader. With only 3 or 4 weeks to organize and nominate candidates, I think it’s a little too tell what sort of an effect the merger (or reuniting) of the Alberta Alliance and Wild Rose Party will have in the next election. I’ll try to post something more in depth on this in the near future.

Calgary-Egmont Take Two: Paul Jackson-endorsed Jonathan Denis defeated Vicki Engel and Don Middleton in the Progressive Conservative nomination. In December 2007, Denis was defeated by Craig Chandler for the Calgary-Egmont Tory nomination before Chandler was booted from the PC nomination by Ed Stelmach and the PC executive for his extreme views. Denis will face off against former Calgary Catholic School District Chair and Alberta Liberal candidate Cathie Williams, and now-Independent candidate Craig Chandler.

Calgary-Buffalo Calgary-Egmont Cathie Williams Ed Stelmach Kent Hehr

don’t sue me bro.

Good grief…

Web war between political parties

Two Liberal candidates, for the next provincial election, have had their domain names purchased by an apparent Tory supporter.

When you go to and users are redirected to the Conservative party website.

CTV News has learned that Andrea Kirby, for the Kirby Financial Group, purchased the domain names. Kirby did not return CTV’s calls, or emails, asking about the purchase.

This latest development comes as the premier threatens to sue a former Liberal communications worker who purchased the domain name

Kent Hehr says he will not be suing anyone over the matter. In fact, he says he appreciates the attention being drawn to his campaign.

Calgary-Egmont Craig Chandler Paul Jackson

march of the chandleristas.

Guess who’s coming to dinner and bringing his friends

Craig Chandler tells The Canadian Press that he will still run in Calgary-Egmont, while several of his supporters will run in other ridings as a protest against him being ousted.

Dan has a great post about Paul Jackson’s credibility stemming from the Chandler Affair…

Also, as a supporter of democracy and freedom, this lovely email found its way into my email inbox yesterday… wow…

Thursday, January 31, 2008
Blackfoot Inn, 5940 Blackfoot Trail SE Calgary, Alberta
Cost: $120 per plate if you act now!
Call 203-3456 to book your seat(s)… seating is limited!

Dear Supporters of Democracy & Freedom,

As you know Craig Chandler won the nomination for the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party on November 17th in a fair and open election. Craig won with an overwhelming margin; the combined total of the other candidates was not even close. On November 20 th, the PC Association of Alberta (PCAA) informed Craig that his nomination would be reviewed by Premier Ed Stelmach, and the (unelected) executive of the PCAA.

On Saturday December 1st , Democracy was Denied, as Premier Stelmach and the PCAA executive decided to ignore the democratic process and give Craig Chandler the boot. What Premier Stelmach has done is a blatant attack on democracy, freedom of speech, and freedom of religion.

It seems that many Albertans are quite disturbed by all of this.

* CTV Calgary conducted a poll and released the numbers on December 4, 2007. The poll question was: ” Should the Tory party pay for Craig Chandler’s campaign expenses?” A majority of voters said YES.

* The Calgary Herald conducted a poll and released the numbers on December 6, 2007. The poll question was: ” Did the Premier do the right thing in rejecting Craig Chandler as a Tory Candidate? ” An overwhelming majority (85.6%) said NO.

Our office has been inundated with phone calls and the support from all across Canada has been massive for Craig Chandler, and the media attention has been intense.

Craig has been interviewed by CBC TV, CTV, City TV, Miracle Channel, Calgary Sun, Edmonton Sun, Edmonton Journal, FFWD, Calgary Sun, Calgary Herald, 660 News, QR77, CBC Radio, Metro News, No Apologies Radio, Freedom Radio, Globe & Mail, WMBI Radio (Chicago Illinois) and many other newspapers and radio stations across Canada. Craig will be writing his side of the situation in several guest columns in Calgary, Edmonton and nationally in the days to come.

The Alberta Progressive Conservative Party in one decision has managed to fracture conservative voters and instigated a mass exodus of voters to the Alberta Alliance Party, the Wildrose Party and even the Alberta Liberals. Social conservatives have been clearly told that there is no home for them in the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party and those who believe in democracy have been shown that the wishes of the people are irrelevant. Ed Stelmach is clearly out of touch with Albertans.

If you care about freedom of speech, freedom of religion and democracy, then you need to attend the Democracy Denied Dinner on Thursday, January 31, 2008. This is not just about Craig Chandler, but is about what we want Alberta to be. Come and meet members and candidates from the Alberta Alliance, the Wildrose Party, Independents and many from the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party who are organizing to insure that Ed Stelmach is not supported in his next leadership review.

What: Democracy Denied Dinner
Date: Thursday, January 31, 2008
Time: 5:30 PM – 6:30 PM (Wine & Cheese) – 6:30 PM – 8:00 PM (Dinner)
Where: Black Foot Inn, 5940 Blackfoot Trail SE, Calgary, Alberta
Cost For WIne & Cheese: $60 per person
Cost For Dinner: $120 per person before December 20th and $160 after
Cost For Entire Evening: $160 per person

Many of you have called our office to ask what happened and why democracy has been denied. Aside from Ed Stelmach being a weak leader, the Alberta Progressive Conservative party has become anti-family and intolerant to people of faith.

Here is the short version of what transpired on the Saturday, December 1, the day Democracy Died in Alberta .

After a 2 and 1/2 hour grill session discussing everything from residency, what property Craig owns, what companies he owns, to his faith, the 45 members of the PCAA Executive and the Premier turned their attacks to a letter written by Steve Boissoin that was initially printed in the Red Deer Advocate in 2002, and the Human Rights complaints (Provincial and Federal) that followed publication of this letter.

In relation to the Alberta Human Rights Commission complaint filed by Darren Lund, it was made clear to the party that Craig did not write the letter and the ruling from the Alberta Human Rights Commission placed responsibility with Rev. Stephen Boissoin and Concerned Christians Canada Inc (CCC), not Craig Chandler. Craig was the CEO of the CCC at the time the letter was printed, but left the organization and sold 100% of his shares in the group two years ago. There is no basis in legal precedence to link Craig to this decision; it is merely convenient for the PCAA and the media to do so.

The Canadian Human Rights Commission (CHRC) decision illustrates that the media and others do not fully understand the process of a settlement in the mediation stage of the Commission. In the mediation stage, the complainant and the respondents have an opportunity to sit down face to face and come to a mutual understanding. Craig, representing the Freedom Radio Network (FRN) and the Concerned Christians Canada Inc (CCC), sat down and came to some agreements. The CHRC merely enforces what is agreed to by the participants. Agreements at this stage are made on the condition that no guilt or innocence is assigned to anyone and this is one of the process’s most paramount principles.

Although, Craig represented the CCC and the FRN in these negotiations and agreements, the reason this complaint arose is not because of comments that originated with Craig . Craig merely wrote the apology as a former and current executive of the organizations. He was not the author of these comments. The CHRC complaint by Rob Wells almost entirely related to the letter written by Rev. Stephen Boissoin entitled “Homosexual Agenda Wicked” which was printed in the Red Deer Advocate. Stephen Boissoin was also a guest on the FRN, discussed this letter and the letter was posted on the FRN website. This letter made the national news across Canada and inasmuch as the FRN is a news talk radio program, it was important to have the letter posted as reference material.

Nowhere in the settlement can you find any comments attributed to Craig that are anti-gay. In fact gay guests have participated on two shows with no adverse publicity. You can not find one thing taken in its full context in the complaint where anti-gay statements are attributed to Craig.

Despite Craig being tarred and feathered for something he never wrote, it is important to note that freedom of the press, freedom of speech and freedom of religion are under attack relating to the letter itself and this should concern all people, not just people of faith.

Also it is a sad day when a democratically elected candidate is removed. It just clarifies that the PCAA is a top down party that cares not for what the people want.

When Craig ran for the party he felt it had become complacent and arrogant and he thought we could fight for changes from within, we were wrong.

Craig compared the PCAA to a house that had a strong foundation, a lot of character, located in a good neighbourhood, and merely needed a few renovations. However, as we have seen the foundations of the party are rotten and are structurally unsound and the house needs to be demolished and re-built.

If you care about freedom and you care about democracy, you will be at this dinner. If you are concerned about the massive shift to the left of the PCAA under the back-room rule of Ed Stelmach, then you need to vote for another party at election time. We used to be concerned about vote splitting with the PCAA, but now they have revealed to all that there is no difference between the Ed Stelmach Progressives and the Kevin Taft Liberals. As we said in the Reform Party days… “Liberal, Tory same old story”.

Harley Shouldice
Campaign Manager
Committee To Elect Craig Chandler
P: 203-3456

Calgary-Egmont Craig Chandler Ed Stelmach

craig chandler: judgment day.

Today is decision day for Craig Chandler.

Today, Ed Stelmach and the Alberta Progressive Conservative Association executive committee will decide the fate of the dually nominated Progressive Conservative candidate in Calgary-Egmont.

As yesterday was this blogger’s Birthday (thanks, Blake), I don’t think there could be a better present that Ed Stelmach and the Alberta Progressive Conservative Association executive committee could give this blogger than Craig Chandler, Progressive Conservative candidate for Calgary-Egmont.

UPDATE: Ed Stelmach has pretty much done what everyone expected he would do and rejected Craig Chandler’s nomination as the PC candidate in Calgary-Egmont. It should be interesting to see what Craig Chandler’s next move will be (considering he won the Calgary-Egmont nomination with the support of the large majority of Calgary-Egmont PC members).

Will Stelmach appoint his favorite candidate or let the constituency association hold another nomination meeting?

Calgary-Egmont Craig Chandler

the daily craig chandler.

Here is your daily update on Calgary-Egmont’s nominated Progressive Conservative candidate:

Globe & Mail: The Chandler Problem
FFWD: Former radio host a “huge liability”

Calgary-Egmont Craig Chandler Ed Stelmach Tom Olsen

is ed stelmach waffling on craig chandler?

The ongoing saga of newly nominated Calgary-Egmont Progressive Conservative candidate Craig Chandler continues as Ed Stelmach is now saying that he wants to meet with Chandler before allowing him to run for his party. This is a confusing about-turn by Stelmach, who refused to take action this August after Chandler declared that:

To those of you who have come to our great land from out of province, you need to remember that you came here to our home and we vote conservative. You came here to enjoy our economy, our natural beauty and more. This is our home and if you wish to live here, you must adapt to our rules and our voting patterns, or leave. Conservatism is our culture. Do not destroy what we have created.

You can watch Stelmach’s original reaction to Chandler’s comment in the video below:

And this is only the beginning in the long list of tasteless comments and declarations from Craig Chandler – just take a browse through Chandler’s online homes – podcasts of the Freedom Radio Network and a webboard called Project Alberta. Yes, Chandler is a grown man who posts on a webboard.

If Stelmach is really going to refuse Chandler’s candidacy, it would have made a lot more sense to have done so before Chandler overwhelmingly defeated Jonathan Denis and Rick Smith in last week’s nomination in Calgary-Egmont. I’m not sure what is different about Chandler now (but I guess that’s what you get when you have someone like Tom Olsen running your media machine…)

For more on the Chandler saga, see Calgary Grit’s extensive post.

Calgary-Egmont Craig Chandler

live from the edmontonians for craig chandler party!

It’s 9:01 pm on Saturday November 17 and I’m blogging live from the rockin’ “Edmontonians for Craig Chandler” party in Edmonton.

It’s a raucous night as Craig Chandler supporters from across northern Alberta have gathered for a night of Ayn Rand-flavoured debauchery and debate! The Ezra Levant Go-Go Girls are here in force and are handing out left-over copies of the Western Standard.

The pasty-skinned young Chandleristas in the room are chanting “adapt or leave! adapt or leave!” to the cheers of the crowd!

It’s rockin’ and everyone in the room is anxiously awaiting the news of Craig Chandler’s landslide victory in the Calgary-Egmont Progressive Conservative nomination!

9:14 pm – It looks like Craig Chandler’s vision for Alberta and its voters has spawned support across Canada! Afar in the blogosphere, it looks like Derek is the new President of the newly-formed “Torontonians for Craig Chandler” chapter. I’ve heard that the TFCC is already planning a Craig Chandler victory parade on Church and Wellesley tomorrow morning!

9:24 pm – The crowd is on tenterhooks as Craig Chandler supporters gather around the radio waiting to hear if the next PC candidate for Calgary-Egmont has finally been nominated. If anyone has heard how it went today in Egmont, the frighteningly large (and slightly threatening) crowd of Chandleristas would really like to know!

9:32 pm – I’m wondering how rockin’ the Jonathan Denis and Rick Smith Edmonton parties are. Not as frighteningly rockin’ as this one me thinks…

9:49 pm – Still no results. This is starting to get boring…

9:55 pm – Good lord, they’ve replaced the Pat Robertson techno-remixes with old podcasts from Chandler’s Freedom Radio network

10:06 pm – Still, no results… I wonder how the Calgarians for Craig Chandler party is going?

10:21 pm – The young Chandleristas are starting to get restless. It’s past their bed time and want to hear results. I wonder when Paul Wells and Warren Kinsella are going to wade in with their coverage of the night? (Even The Shotgun is silent tonight…)

10:22 pm – I’ve just been informed through a media source in Calgary that Craig Chandler has been nominated as the Progressive Conservative candidate in Calgary-Egmont!

Copies of the Western Standard are being thrown in the air with glee by the young Chandleristas! I am frightened!

No news on the vote breakdown, but Craig Chandler has been nominated to carry Ed Stelmach’s Progressive Conservative flag in Calgary-Egmont against Alberta Liberal candidate and former Calgary Catholic School District Chair Cathie Williams.

(commissioned art work by the artist formerly known as Holtopia)

Alberta Tories Calgary-Egmont Craig Chandler

oh, craig…

This was in my inbox from a daveberta reader this morning. Thanks for the message…

Hey Dave, [Craig] Chandler keeps on giving – and he wrote some serious falsehoods in the herald today.

So, Chandler wrote an op-ed in the herald today, where he claimed to have written something different on his posting.

he claimed:

“To those of you who have come to our great land from out of province, you need to remember that you came here to our home and we vote conservative. You came here to enjoy our economy, our natural beauty and more. This is our home and if you wish to live here, you must adapt to our rules and our voting patterns, or leave. Conservatism is our culture. Do not destroy what we have created.” – from Daveberta

was more like:

“To those of you who have come to our great land from out of province, you need to remember that you came here to our home and we vote conservative (meaning Social Credit, Alberta Alliance, Wildrose or the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party.)”

he also changed it on the forum posting:

Firstly, Alberta is growing in a way that was never expected and many of the people coming here do not truly appreciate Alberta or even understand the history of this province or the relationship with small ‘c’ conservatism. To those of you who have come to our great land from out of province, you need to remember that you came here to our home and we vote conservative (meaning Social Credit, Alberta Alliance, Wildrose or the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party). You came here to enjoy our economy, our natural beauty and more. This is our home and if you wish to live here, you must adapt to our rules and our voting patterns, or leave. Conservatism is our culture. Do not destroy what we have created.

The great part is the forum tracks edits to posts. The post is tagged at the end with:
“Last edited by Craig B. Chandler on Sun Sep 02, 2007 8:52 pm; edited 4 times in total.”

Craig is being untrue about what he wrote in his forum post.

Alberta Tories Calgary-Egmont Craig Chandler Rick Bell

rick bell on ‘kooky craig.’

Calgary Sun columnist Rick Bell offers his thoughts on Progressive Conservative nomination candidate ‘Kooky’ Craig Chandler’s recent comments that if new Albertans: “wish to live here, you must adapt to our rules and our voting patterns, or leave. Conservatism is our culture. Do not destroy what we have created.”

UPDATE: CTV Calgary and the Globe and Mail have both run stories on Mr. Chandler’s commments.

Ed Stelmach wouldn’t refute Chandler’s comments, but would only say that: “This province has welcomed newcomers and we will continue to welcome newcomers.”

Here is the YouTube video (linked from Glen):

Alberta Tories Calgary-Egmont Craig Chandler Ed Stelmach

craig chandler continued.

Craig Chandler officially announced his intentions to run for the Progressive Conservative nomination in Calgary-Egmont as five-term Tory MLA Denis Herard announced his retirement today.

Chandler recently wrote the bizarre and ridiculous webboard statement that if new Albertans “wish to live here, you must adapt to our rules and our voting patterns, or leave. Conservatism is our culture. Do not destroy what we have created.

Chandler’s positions are somewhat confusing after you notice some pretty big contradictions between his campaign website and a media release sent out by his campaign today:

Media Release: “Some in our party have become complacent and think we have the natural right to govern because we are conservatives.”

Website: “Craig Chandler is seeking the riding nomination for the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party. We all know that whoever wins the nomination will surely become your next MLA.”

Yep, complacent.

I wonder if Ed Stelmach is starting to regret these best wishes

Here is Chandler’s media release as received by email (how many spelling errors can you spot?):


(Calgary) Craig Chandler, Executive Director of the Progressive Group for Independent Business (PGIB) and a well known name in conservative political circles is seeking to become the MLA for the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party in Calgary Egmont. Craig Chandler has taken a leave of abscence from the the Progressive Group for Independent Business (PGIB)

“I feel that we need a strong Alberta a government where we put Alberta first. Some in our party have become complacent and think we have the natural right to govern because we are conservatives. I feel we need to get back to looking at the whites of people eyes on their doorsteps and find out first hand what we are doing well and where we need to improve. I will show up at the door of my constituents at least once a year to find out first hand their concerns. I will be an effective and articulate voice for Calgary Egmont and Calgary as a whole” said Craig Chandler.

The Craig Chandler campaign has been campaigning for over 3 months and has submited a very substantial amount of memberships to the party. Several communities have already been doorknocked and the campaign is working full time with volunteer and paid staff. Craig Chandler has also managed to unite many on the conservative right behind him. Link Byfield of the Wildrose Party has endorsed Craig Chandler. David Crutcher who received 1,657 votes for the Alberta Alliance in Calgary Egmont has joined the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party and is now serving as their President in Calgary Egmont.

“We are taking nothing for granted. We are working very hard and know that it takes a substantial amount of memberships and money to win the nomination. We will always be campaigning like we are 30 votes behind” said Harley Shouldice, Campaign Manager / Whip for the Craig Chandler Campaign.

– 30 –

For More Information contact Harley Shouldice or Craig Chandler at 203-3456

It also looks like Chandler’s PGIB group is going to start hijacking Progressive Conservative nomination meeting through

Alberta Tories Calgary-Egmont Craig Chandler Ed Stelmach

if you move to alberta – adapt or leave: craig chandler.

Alberta PC nomination candidate Craig Chandler has eloquently declared his feelings towards new Albertans who choose to exercise their constitutional right to vote for a political party other than the 36-year old ruling Progressive Conservative Party of Ed Stelmach.

I wonder which point in Ed Stelmach’s five-priority plan Chander is promoting when he wrote this:

To those of you who have come to our great land from out of province, you need to remember that you came here to our home and we vote conservative. You came here to enjoy our economy, our natural beauty and more. This is our home and if you wish to live here, you must adapt to our rules and our voting patterns, or leave. Conservatism is our culture. Do not destroy what we have created.

Considering that Stelmach’s Tories haven’t been doing too well in Calgary lately, I wonder how excited Ed Stelmach will be with Craig Chandler carring the PC banner in Calgary Egmont?

I know I’m looking forward to the daily entertainment.