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  #51  
Old 04-18-2019, 10:26 AM
Northern Piper is offline
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Originally Posted by Biffster View Post
The tyrant is born.


This is an essentially anti-democratic post. It appears that if your side doesn't win, the other side is tyrannical.

The essence of democracy is to accept that there can be good faith differences in society.

A democratic system requires an acceptance that the other side might win. That your side didn't convince enough people to vote for them.

Labelling anyone who disagrees with your views as a "tyrant" just because they won a democratic election is anti-democratic.

Really, not much different than chanting "lock her up" every time the opponent's name is mentioned.
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  #52  
Old 04-18-2019, 10:49 AM
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I think Alberta is basically a pariah to the oil industry until we have proven that we can guarantee the flow of oil out of the province, and maybe not then.
I don't think Alberta's a pariah as much as it's a one-industry province, which is bad, bad news.

Yes, it's a fricking well-paying industry and it's given the province the highest average income in the country, but fracking changed the industry and Alberta hasn't adapted.
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  #53  
Old 04-18-2019, 11:57 AM
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That's a bit silly. I'm not a fan of Alberta conservatives, but in no way are they comparable to the likes of Doug Ford. They have an entirely different problem.

The core problem in Alberta, as I see it, is that they have become so accustomed to oil & gas royalties paying for everything that they believe they are too special to pay provincial taxes at anything like the level required to pay for the services they expect. This means that when the oil sector goes into crisis (which has happpened before, mind, and taught them nothing then either) their provincial budget goes right into the crapper.

The proper way to fix this issue is to tax Albertans at a rate that will pay for the services they demand, and when/if oil revenues recover stick those in a properly managed sovereign wealth fund that can decrease the tax burden over the long term in a sustainable fashion, ie by using only investment returns from said fund, not the principle. Unfortunately, this fix is a complete non-starter as Albertans are too special to pay provincial taxes at an appropriate level.

And don't think I'm just calling out Albertans here. The same political currents run through Saskatchewan as well, though they're not quite as strong and some of the details are different - we're not as undertaxed relative to govt spending as Albertans are, and our resource royalties aren't just oil & gas but also include potash and uranium.

Speaking of which, by all means build a reactor to decrease the carbon footprint of the oilsands. Build a dozen! Maybe Cameco would be able to re-open MacArthur River.
  #54  
Old 04-18-2019, 12:38 PM
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Yeah, maybe we should be like Quebec, which has sky-high taxes, gets over $10 billion per year in transfer payments, and still has a huge debt and a lousy economy. But hey, at least we'd be taxing people 'appropriately'.

Maybe a better answer is to cut the size of government. Ralph Klein managed to run large surpluses when oil prices were low, While other premiers have run deficits while oil prices were high.

Another answer would be to stop sending billions of dollars per year to Quebec. Then maybe they'd be forced to get their own fiscal house in order.
  #55  
Old 04-18-2019, 12:39 PM
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Since our debt went from $10 billion to $76 billion in four years, I'm trying to figure out how they spent so much money and what we got for it.
Here's a hint for you; Check out the charts of world oil prices over the past 5 years. Also, look into the royalty payments that Alberta was charging corporations.

Now figure out what happened to the Alberta's income over this time period.

Spending is one half of the equation. You may want to pay some attention to the other half.
  #56  
Old 04-18-2019, 12:47 PM
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The core problem in Alberta, as I see it, is that they have become so accustomed to oil & gas royalties paying for everything that they believe they are too special to pay provincial taxes at anything like the level required to pay for the services they expect. This means that when the oil sector goes into crisis (which has happpened before, mind, and taught them nothing then either) their provincial budget goes right into the crapper.
You.
Nailed.
It.

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Originally Posted by Gorsnak View Post
The proper way to fix this issue is to tax Albertans at a rate that will pay for the services they demand, and when/if oil revenues recover stick those in a properly managed sovereign wealth fund that can decrease the tax burden over the long term in a sustainable fashion, ie by using only investment returns from said fund, not the principle. Unfortunately, this fix is a complete non-starter as Albertans are too special to pay provincial taxes at an appropriate level.
Yes, one thousand times yes.

I know a lot of people in Alberta, and I get quite tired of the attitude that they are smarter than everyone else because they pay no sales tax, because they were clever enough to live in a place with oil under the ground.
  #57  
Old 04-18-2019, 12:48 PM
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Yeah, maybe we should be like Quebec, which has sky-high taxes, gets over $10 billion per year in transfer payments, and still has a huge debt and a lousy economy. But hey, at least we'd be taxing people 'appropriately'.
.
I guess for some people, there's no middle ground. Either you're the province with the lowest income tax and no sales tax, or you're Quebec paying people to have babies, flushing money down the toilet and stealing from the rest of Canada.
  #58  
Old 04-18-2019, 12:56 PM
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Yeah, maybe we should be like Quebec, which has sky-high taxes, gets over $10 billion per year in transfer payments, and still has a huge debt and a lousy economy. But hey, at least we'd be taxing people 'appropriately'.

Maybe a better answer is to cut the size of government. Ralph Klein managed to run large surpluses when oil prices were low, While other premiers have run deficits while oil prices were high.

Another answer would be to stop sending billions of dollars per year to Quebec. Then maybe they'd be forced to get their own fiscal house in order.
Do you disagree that it's appropriate to tax people at a sufficient rate to pay for the government services they demand, rather than using non-renewable resource royalties to provide short-term tax relief when commodity prices are high and run giant deficits when they aren't?

(Note that references to Quebec are not appropriate here, as they don't follow this principle either.)
  #59  
Old 04-18-2019, 01:04 PM
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Then, when the world decides that the oil under the ground is not worth that much, my friends run about crying that the rest of the country is being mean to them.
  #60  
Old 04-18-2019, 07:46 PM
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That's a bit silly. I'm not a fan of Alberta conservatives, but in no way are they comparable to the likes of Doug Ford. They have an entirely different problem.



The core problem in Alberta, as I see it, is that they have become so accustomed to oil & gas royalties paying for everything that they believe they are too special to pay provincial taxes at anything like the level required to pay for the services they expect. This means that when the oil sector goes into crisis (which has happpened before, mind, and taught them nothing then either) their provincial budget goes right into the crapper.



The proper way to fix this issue is to tax Albertans at a rate that will pay for the services they demand, and when/if oil revenues recover stick those in a properly managed sovereign wealth fund that can decrease the tax burden over the long term in a sustainable fashion, ie by using only investment returns from said fund, not the principle. Unfortunately, this fix is a complete non-starter as Albertans are too special to pay provincial taxes at an appropriate level.



And don't think I'm just calling out Albertans here. The same political currents run through Saskatchewan as well, though they're not quite as strong and some of the details are different - we're not as undertaxed relative to govt spending as Albertans are, and our resource royalties aren't just oil & gas but also include potash and uranium.



Speaking of which, by all means build a reactor to decrease the carbon footprint of the oilsands. Build a dozen! Maybe Cameco would be able to re-open MacArthur River.


Good points. That provincial sales tax and the lack thereof is really the elephant in the room. When times are good and oil is high, it doesn’t really matter and Albertans have been able to get by without a sales tax (and yes, we are special ) by when oil is low, we can no longer afford this lifestyle. Trouble is, we don’t want to give up the lifestyle or the perception that we can afford to live large. A provincial sales tax would solve a lot of problems—and make Albertans no more special than anyone else in Canada.
  #61  
Old 04-18-2019, 08:21 PM
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You have some examples for how Kenney represents extreme US Republican conservatism?
How about his Trumpian conspiracy theory that environmentalism is the evil result of money being provided by "foreign interests" solely to destroy the Alberta oil and gas industry, and his pledge to use public money to conduct harassment campaigns against charities like the David Suzuki Foundation and the Tides Foundation? All he has to do is add that climate change is a hoax being perpetrated by the Chinese and he and Trump could be BFFs!

How many more do you want? How about some random headlines that more or less illustrate the general spirit of the UCP culture:

Alberta UCP’s John Carpay Sorry For Comparing Pride Flag to Swastikas

United Conservative Party Votes To Tell Parents If Child Joins Gay-Straight Alliance
Jason Kenney's 'Gender-Neutral' Jab At Ontario PC Convention Draws Ire
Alberta MLA Jason Nixon Fired Employee Who Reported Sexual Harassment
UCP candidate in central Alberta under fire over homophobic, anti-abortion comments
(Incidentally, that's the same dude who also wanted to fire gay teachers.)
Star UCP candidate who resigned over white supremacist comments also questioned value of Pride parades
UCP MLA apologizes for saying Indigenous people are disengaged
Alberta Teachers’ Association slams ‘misguided’ United Conservative education platform

Last edited by wolfpup; 04-18-2019 at 08:23 PM.
  #62  
Old 04-22-2019, 08:48 AM
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Yeah, maybe we should be like Quebec, which has sky-high taxes, gets over $10 billion per year in transfer payments, and still has a huge debt and a lousy economy. But hey, at least we'd be taxing people 'appropriately'.
[snip]

Another answer would be to stop sending billions of dollars per year to Quebec. Then maybe they'd be forced to get their own fiscal house in order.
Le sigh. Yet another person who does not understand equalization payments.

1) Provinces do not transfer any money to other provinces. Rich people pay more in federal taxes, and Alberta has lots of rich people. It's got the highest average income in Canada -- nearly twice the average income in Quebec, depending on how you count it. The feds then transfer money to provinces with lots of poor people.

2) Quebec has lots and lots of poor people for historical reasons, namely a population that was actively discouraged from being educated, being entrepreneurial, and being successful.

3) How bad was education? The first Minister of Education was appointed in the 1960s. This province still has the lowest high school graduation rate in the country.

The situation is improving, but Quebec started so far behind other provinces that it's going to take a while to catch up.
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Last edited by Barbarian; 04-22-2019 at 08:49 AM.
  #63  
Old 04-22-2019, 09:53 AM
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  #64  
Old 04-22-2019, 04:25 PM
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Le sigh. Yet another person who does not understand equalization payments.

1) Provinces do not transfer any money to other provinces. Rich people pay more in federal taxes, and Alberta has lots of rich people. It's got the highest average income in Canada -- nearly twice the average income in Quebec, depending on how you count it. The feds then transfer money to provinces with lots of poor people.
I know exactly how equalization payments work. You might want to look earlier in the thread if you don't believe me.

I also know that having the federal government distribute the funds is no different than if Alberta cut a cheque, save that control of disbursement is handled by the federal government. So all provinces have their taxes raised by a cumulative $20 billion or whatever this year's number is. Then the 'have not' provinces get additional money from that pool. This is essentially identical, financially speaking, than if equalization wasn't taxed by the feds but each province was ordered to cut cheques to other provinces based on the formula. Either way, Alberta loses money and Quebec and a handful of other provinces gain money. No way around that.

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2) Quebec has lots and lots of poor people for historical reasons, namely a population that was actively discouraged from being educated, being entrepreneurial, and being successful.
Jesus. Yes, poor Quebec is just a victim of history, and its poor economic performance couldn't have anything at all to do with having by far the highest taxes in Canada, along with public services that other provinces do not have. It couldn't have anything to do with Quebec's protectionism or its forced language purity or its high regulatory burden on businesses, or anything else. Quebec is just a poor victim.

Fun fact: Quebec gets more money per capita from equalization payments than Alberta gets in oil royalties. Even in our best year Alberta got about 6.1 billion in royalties. This year Quebec will get about $13 billion dollars in equalization while Alberta earns about $837 million from oil royalties. And yet, even though we're running $10 billion dollar deficits and Quebec has close to a balanced budget, Quebec will get billions of dollars from Alberta.

Also, if you look at the equalization formula, it biases against provinces with lower taxes, as if lower taxes is something they should be punished for, and provinces with sky-high taxes get more money from equalization. This is a huge moral hazard at the provincial scale, and carries an underlying assumption that it's better for the state to control the money in the economy rather than private individuals. The whole basis of equalization is statist punishment for fiscal responsibility and reward for large government and high taxes. It should be opposed on that basis alone.

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3) How bad was education? The first Minister of Education was appointed in the 1960s. This province still has the lowest high school graduation rate in the country.
Then you should fix your education system. The 1960's was 50-60 years ago. Just how much time do you need?

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The situation is improving, but Quebec started so far behind other provinces that it's going to take a while to catch up.
50 years is a long while. There are countries on this planet that have risen up from peasant agriculture in that time and now have better education systems than Quebec. Perhaps Quebec should solve its own problems and stop leaning on other provinces to finance their stupid choices.

Last edited by Sam Stone; 04-22-2019 at 04:27 PM.
  #65  
Old 04-22-2019, 05:11 PM
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Le sigh. Yet another person who does not understand equalization payments.

1) Provinces do not transfer any money to other provinces. Rich people pay more in federal taxes, and Alberta has lots of rich people. It's got the highest average income in Canada -- nearly twice the average income in Quebec, depending on how you count it. The feds then transfer money to provinces with lots of poor people.
At the very least you are splitting hairs when it comes to describing equalization payments.
But realistically, you are refusing to accept the fact that there is more Alberta money flowing into Quebec (via Ottawa) than from any other province.
It's time for Canada to reassess equalization payments, and time for Quebec to get it's economy off it's ass.
Of all the have-not provinces, Quebec is the least deserving.
  #66  
Old 04-22-2019, 06:10 PM
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Still a very close race here in Lethbridge West--about 30-40 votes, with maybe a dozen polls to report. No idea what may happen once the advance poll votes are counted.
Lethbridge West turned out the be the closest race in the province, and tonight's local news gave us the official result: NDP by a margin of 255 votes. That's out of slightly more than 22,000 votes cast. Thew news said there could be a recount with a margin that small, but stopped short of stating that there would be.
  #67  
Old 04-23-2019, 01:22 PM
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I know exactly how equalization payments work. You might want to look earlier in the thread if you don't believe me.
I also know that having the federal government distribute the funds is no different than if Alberta cut a cheque, save that control of disbursement is handled by the federal government.
You're entirely wrong, so there's that.

The feds collect money from rich individuals. Alberta happens to have a small population with lots and lots of rich individuals.

I mean, we're talking the highest average income in Canada by tens of thousands of dollars.

Raise taxes, increase oil royalties, implement social programs, and bam Alberta would be on the have-not list.

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And yet, even though we're running $10 billion dollar deficits and Quebec has close to a balanced budget, Quebec will get billions of dollars from Alberta.
You may want to look at debt levels. Quebec's debt is massive and spending has finally been reined in.


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The whole basis of equalization is statist punishment for fiscal responsibility and reward for large government and high taxes.
Spoken like a true member of the 1%

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Originally Posted by Sam Stone View Post
Then you should fix your education system. The 1960's was 50-60 years ago. Just how much time do you need?
[snip]
There are countries on this planet that have risen up from peasant agriculture in that time and now have better education systems than Quebec
It's a massive cultural shift to convince people that education is worthwhile. But really, thinking of life in Quebec as a shift from feudal peasantry to the modern world is a good analogy.
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  #68  
Old 04-24-2019, 12:33 AM
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You're entirely wrong, so there's that.
Specifics, please. If I'm completely wrong, you can tell me how.

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The feds collect money from rich individuals. Alberta happens to have a small population with lots and lots of rich individuals.

I mean, we're talking the highest average income in Canada by tens of thousands of dollars.
First, the people who were making the big average incomes in Alberta were people working up in the oil patch who got big salaries because it's dirty, cold, dangerous work in an unpleasant place to live. Work which also requires a high degree of training.

And the places they lived were incredibly expensive. My brother was living in a basement suite with three other workers in 'rooms' divided by bedsheets, and he was paying around a grand a month for the privilege. If you wanted to actually live in an apartment by yourself, if you could find one you were paying New York or Los Angeles prices for an apartment in northern Canada. So it's not as great as you think. They have high incomes, but they aren't living like lawyers or doctors or professors.

People living in Ft. Macleod or Innisfail, on the other hand, make the kind of money other Canadians make, because they do the same kinds of jobs. So let's not paint the Province as just a bunch of rich people.

Quote:
Raise taxes, increase oil royalties, implement social programs, and bam Alberta would be on the have-not list.
I agree. I'm glad you agree that high taxes and big government are a sure way to turn a 'have' province into a 'have not' province. That's why it's so annoying to be criticised for being a 'have' province by the people who did those things and now need 'help'.

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You may want to look at debt levels. Quebec's debt is massive and spending has finally been reined in.
You're welcome.

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Spoken like a true member of the 1%
I am not even close to the 1%. The fact that you think that anyone making these arguments must be rich tells me a lot.

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It's a massive cultural shift to convince people that education is worthwhile. But really, thinking of life in Quebec as a shift from feudal peasantry to the modern world is a good analogy.
Really? You're going with that? Quebec was essentially a feudal peasant society in 1960? Okay then.
  #69  
Old 04-24-2019, 07:55 AM
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Sam,
What's with the post asking me to explain something, when I explained it in the post you're quoting?

The feds collect tax money. The feds collect more tax money from people with high incomes. Alberta just happens to have the highest incomes in the country. Highest average, highest mode, highest median. By any measure, incomes in Alberta are higher than in any other province, and higher than the Canadian average.


Let's look at Fort McLeod, since you brought it up.
Median total income of $32,981, after tax income of $30,432, compared to the Federal average income of $34,204, after tax income of $30,866 (Stats from the Canadian census https://www12.statcan.gc.ca/census-r...dex.cfm?Lang=E )

Seems to be about the same size and relevance as Prescott, Ontario, which has a median income of $27,520 ($25,963 after-tax).

Quote:
And the places they lived were incredibly expensive. My brother was living in a basement suite with three other workers in 'rooms' divided by bedsheets, and he was paying around a grand a month for the privilege. If you wanted to actually live in an apartment by yourself, if you could find one you were paying New York or Los Angeles prices for an apartment in northern Canada. So it's not as great as you think. They have high incomes, but they aren't living like lawyers or doctors or professors.
Here's where I think your perceptions are skewed.
When I lived in NYC a friend was renting out his sofa for USD$850 a month in 2003. At that time I was spending $1400 on a subsidized one-bedroom apartment. I knew professors at three universities and they spent more to have a two-bedroom apartment.
My banker friend had a two-bedroom and was spending $3,000 a month.


This is what Albertans just don't seem to understand: you've got a large group of people that earn a lot of money and that has raised incomes throughout the province, and the rest of the country earns a lot less money.

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I am not even close to the 1%. The fact that you think that anyone making these arguments must be rich tells me a lot.
It was a joke about your antipathy to the redistribution of wealth.

Quote:
Really? You're going with that? Quebec was essentially a feudal peasant society in 1960? Okay then.
I said Quebec went through a massive cultural shift. It's called La Grande Noirceur (The great darkness)
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  #70  
Old 04-24-2019, 08:03 AM
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At the very least you are splitting hairs when it comes to describing equalization payments.
But realistically, you are refusing to accept the fact that there is more Alberta money flowing into Quebec (via Ottawa) than from any other province.
It's time for Canada to reassess equalization payments, and time for Quebec to get it's economy off it's ass.
Of all the have-not provinces, Quebec is the least deserving.
Those who say equalization is Alberta paying other provinces are deliberately misrepresenting the process.
You ever notice that it's always Quebec that is criticized? Not the Atlantic provinces which have been recipients just as long?

Quebec has the population of any three western provinces combined and it just happens to have a lot of poor, old, uneducated people. That's changing, but you basically have to wait for the old people to die off.
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  #71  
Old 05-11-2019, 11:58 AM
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And the new Cabinet is up. It's quite a diverse group.

Alberta Cabinet
  #72  
Old 05-11-2019, 12:08 PM
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And the new Cabinet is up. It's quite a diverse group.



Alberta Cabinet


By “diverse” I assume you mean “not a lot of female representation.”
  #73  
Old 05-11-2019, 02:23 PM
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By “diverse” I assume you mean “not a lot of female representation.”
Can I assume you didn't look before commenting?

Last edited by CarnalK; 05-11-2019 at 02:24 PM.
  #74  
Old 05-11-2019, 02:43 PM
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And the new Cabinet is up. It's quite a diverse group.

Alberta Cabinet
Is it? I'm sure they're all conservatives.
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  #75  
Old 05-11-2019, 03:02 PM
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Is it? I'm sure they're all conservatives.
Were you expecting that the conservative government should put lefties in its cabinet? How many conservatives are in Trudeau's cabinet?

In any event, you don't understand the modern meaning of 'diversity' as practiced on campuses and promoted by the left. Today, 'diversity' means diversity in skin color and gender, so long as the 'diverse' people all toe the same political line and have the same values. So a college can trumpet its 'diversity' by showing how many women and people of color are in the faculty, while overlooking the fact that they are 90% left-wing and conservative speakers are deplatformed.
  #76  
Old 05-11-2019, 03:06 PM
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By “diverse” I assume you mean “not a lot of female representation.”
There are seven women in the cabinet.
  #77  
Old 05-11-2019, 05:51 PM
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There are seven women in the cabinet.


That’s not much compared with the previous government, where half the cabinet was women.
  #78  
Old 05-12-2019, 09:09 AM
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That’s not much compared with the previous government, where half the cabinet was women.
7 out of 18 are women. So your devastating criticism is that 7 is not much compared to 9?
  #79  
Old 05-12-2019, 09:43 AM
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Alberta election 2019


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Originally Posted by CarnalK View Post
7 out of 18 are women. So your devastating criticism is that 7 is not much compared to 9?


I believe there were 12 with the previous government out of a total of 24. That’s five more women than this one. So yeah.

Also, I count 24 cabinet ministers on that page of faces that the link took me to. 7 out of 24 is less than a third. Where did you get 18 anyway?

Last edited by Biffster; 05-12-2019 at 09:48 AM.
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