Painful Truth: Kenney fights to the end for oil

Jason Kenney will likely be the next Alberta premier, but the fight after that will be a losing one

The Alberta election is going to be ugly, and crazy, and the next few years could be worse.

Jason Kenney of the United Conservative Party (UCP) has kludged together an alliance of the shattered right-wing that ruled Alberta for nigh on about a million years. He’s facing off against NDP Premier Rachel Notley.

This should be Kenney’s election to lose, and so far he’s trying to live up to that sentence.

Kenney started out well in the lead and remains there, as of the most recent polls. And why shouldn’t he?

Alberta has leaned conservative in one way or another for longer than most people alive can remember. An NDP majority government taking up residence in the legislature was clearly a sign of the end times, on par with a three-headed dragon torching the West Edmonton Mall.

And yet… it happened. Alberta isn’t a right wing monolith, at least not anymore.

Last time around, the conservatives were divided between Wildrose and the Progressive Conservatives.

But in welding them together, Kenney created one of the two controversies that would dog his campaign – the spectre of a so-called “kamikaze candidate” allegedly remote controlled by Kenney’s campaign during the UCP leadership race.

Then there were the expected bozo eruptions, with candidates getting punted from the UCP for saying bizarre or offensive things, or hanging around with the Soldiers of Odin, a group too odious even for Facebook to handle.

So why is Kenney still the front runner and presumed next premier?

Well, because the price of oil is down, way down, and because a lack of investment in pipelines over the past few decades has come back to bite Albertans right in the wallet.

I’ve written before that Alberta needs to start thinking seriously about what happens when oil stops being a permanent ticket to financial stability.

The petro-province might have one or two more booms in her, but then it’s over. Electric cars and cheap solar and wind power are within reach. The oil sands have an expiration date, and it’s getting closer.

But that’s why the election aftermath will be worse than the vote itself.

Kenney is winning – so far – on the promise of endless war against any and all perceived enemies of oil.

Turn off the taps to B.C., for our temerity to oppose Trans Mountain expansion! Roll back action on climate change – and death to carbon pricing, too! And a referendum on equalization payments, to somehow force Ottawa to let Alberta keep more oil money!

Kenney is riling people up for a series of fights. He’s going to lose most of them. Trans Mountain will likely be built, but that has nothing to do with Kenney – Notley’s for it, too, as is Trudeau. But the rest of it is going to go badly, and waste a lot of time and resources. Just when Alberta needs to be conserving what it has for an uncertain future.

Just Posted

A happy Thanksgiving for ‘bully breed’ dog rescue

Shelter raises awareness about dog rescue during National Adoption Weekend

A good scare, for a good cause at Langley home for Halloween

The Haunted Graveyard of Brookswood starts Oct. 24

Spartans defeat Mariners in overtime thriller

Langley-based hockey team opens 2019-20 regular season with an emphatic win

Russ and Sandy Rosen invite Langley to be a part of Bez

Bez Arts Hub holds gala with music by Shari Ulrich for potential sponsors, patrons, and partners

VIDEO: A loss at home for Langley Rivermen

Jake Livingstone finds net for the only Rivermen goal in a 4-1 loss to Coquitlam

No holiday for campaigning leaders on Thanksgiving weekend, but pace slows

There is a little over a week to go before election day, and advanced polls are now open

Canadian Snowbirds plane crashes before air show in Atlanta

Pilot lands safely after ejecting from jet

Share crash data, private insurers tell David Eby, ICBC

B.C. monopoly makes drivers retrieve their own records

B.C. VIEWS: Wolf kill, not backcountry bans, saving caribou

B.C.’s largest herds turn the corner from extinction

Pearson nets shootout winner as Canucks clip Flyers 3-2

Vancouver picks up second straight home win

Map on Elections Canada website sends Nanaimo-Ladysmith voters to landfill

Address for polling station correct, but Google Map address differs

BC Children’s Hospital launches 2 new virtual care sites bringing total to 19 across province

Provincial initiative allows pediatric patients to see health specialists through video

PHOTOS: Kipchoge becomes first runner to dip under 2 hours for marathon

Olympic champion and world record holder from Kenya clocks 1 hour, 59 minutes and 40 seconds

Most Read