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Ric Dolphin is president of Dolphin Media, Inc. and the editor and publisher of Insight into Government, a weekly newsletter available by subscription. He reports on Alberta political affairs from the Alberta Legislature in Edmonton, AB, Canada.

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Top Tweets

1

Sometimes I like to imagine things, like what the reaction would be if Stephen Harper mused about calling in the ar… https://t.co/v9VaNjxveQ

2

CBC has the gall to complain about a private media outlet getting political after campaigning like fawning groupies for Trudeau. #ableg

3

'I bled in Iraq and you're going to threaten to shoot me on a bridge in North Dakota?' https://t.co/a3TvWpgyyChttps://t.co/3SAP7e1G0Y

4

.@ezralevant @rachelnotley Lol. More like 750. And it was plus 3 degrees. We got 5,000 out for a pension rally in minus 35. Try again #ableg

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This is who @jkenney wants to unite with. Kenney either has no values or shares these values. #ableg #pcldr https://t.co/VWRKGPEC2C

This Week's Get a free sample

Week ending November 25th, 2016 Vol 31, No 12

TWO BROWN POSSIBLES — At Saturday's unusually well attended Alberta Liberal Politic conference in Calgary—60 attended compared to the traditional baker's dozen—possible leadership contenders Nirmala Naidoo, 52 (left), an east Indian former Calgary TV anchor, and David Khan, 42, a Calgary lawyer of part Pakistani ancestry (sorry girls, he's gay) dominated the microphones during discussion on such resolutions as free birth control for all, a tax on sugary drinks, and (always a crowd pleaser) banning photo radar.
A committee is a cul-de-sac down which ideas are lured and then quietly strangled.
Sir Barnett Cocks, clerk of the UK House Commons (‘62-‘74)

Inside this week

Rubbing their hands with glee, the Dippers begin the sacred work of re-regulating electricity
The sad tale of Serenity. Will things change? Can things change?
Bills passed this week include a vital stats modernization that delights the 'ML-Gays'
Verbatim: Jansen's recitation of some nasty tweets brings an ovation in the House

Top Story

It was an electrically charged week at the Alberta Legislature, with the NDP finally having its chance to poke a stick at Ralph Klein’s de-regulated power system. In an incremental series of announcements Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, the Dippers nudged poor old De-Reg an inch or two closer to the abyss. Once it’s dead and gone, what might be next? The German Model; The Swedish model; The Danish model? All sound enchanting to us… Sorry, mind was wandering. Electrical regulation has that effect.

To continue:When we heard about the Notley govt’s pokes and nudges to the power system, our thoughts naturally turned to his rumpled majesty Brian Mason. Brian’s portfolios are Transportation and Infrastructure. One wonders, however, what part he is playing in the electricity adjustments, and whether he resents what lately looks like it will be rather slow trudge back to regulation. For one recalls Brian’s salad days in opposition when he and his lone NDP brother, leader Raj Pannu, were embarked a two-man jihad against the Tories’ scheme to deregulate electricity. Their basic argument: the old, regulated system provided cheap, reliable power, why fuck with it?

Deregulation promised lower consumer prices through competition. There was competition among companies, which is good for jobs and the economy. But consumer prices didn’t decline. In fact at first they rose so much the gov’t had to provide subsidies to consumers. Then they sort of settled down to a Canadian average.

Talk in the Corridors

Greg Clark (Calgary-Elbow) has been the little engine that could ever since he became leader of the rumpish Alberta Party three years ago. Marching alone to a beat of I-think-I-can-I-think-I-think-I-can, Greg beat the odds in May of 2015 and won the first (and so far only) elected seat for AP—the once-conservative party infiltrated by disaffected Liberals like MLA Dave Taylor, who was beaten in the Libs’ leadership contest by David Swann in 2010 and stomped off with his ball (later losing in the general election).