This is the second post as a follow up to “Alberta is it time to consider life without Canada.”
I will address the many insights, points and arguments in the forum and lay out a plan to move forward. The readers can decide.
First I would like to apologize to the farmers, loggers and anyone else in Alberta that is not working directly in the Oilfield. It was pointed out to me that the transfer payments to Ottawa are not solely from oil and gas royalties. They are also revenue from every government fee, personal tax, corporate tax and dollar we all spend in Alberta. It all goes into general government revenue.
Secondly I would like to thank people for the endless texts, messages and notes of support. The people of Alberta love Canada but, like me, realism has set in. It’s also obvious that the rest of Canada east of Saskatchewan don’t want us to leave. Do not believe we have the right to leave, can’t leave, will not leave and don’t own the oil. Some comments had poor choices of grammar, lacked punctuation and were just rants centered around swear words. My conclusion on these comments were lucky the person attempting to write them will only have to know enough English grammar to “make their mark” on the ballet, an X.
Once again, like the vast majority of Albertans, I am not yet a separatist, but a realist. We love our country, we don’t want to leave. But we are serious, things have to change. Do I want to choke out Junior like many of my former military friends and oilfield workers? No. But I do believe in tough negotiations. Conversations where there is eye contact. Honest, direct and courageous thoughts are put on the table. Where the right about of pressure when tactfully applied will cause him to lose his breath slightly because of the possible outcome.
When Premier Danny Williams was sent home by Steven Harper and denied the same royalty package that Alberta has, Danny held a news conference and ordered every Canadian flag in the province of Newfoundland lowered until further notice. It embarrassed the conservative government in Ottawa. Danny got his royalties. Why hasn’t the leadership of Alberta done something? Anything?
There was some very interesting and intelligent debate going on in the forum. I had to research some of the comments. I will attempt to answer the questions, share the facts with and you can make your own conclusions.
Here are the cards we are holding and the hand we have. Ask yourself if it’s the winning hand?
Canadian Constitution guarantees that just like it took a vote to join Canada another vote can be done to exit confederation. A vote of 50% plus one is majority and that begins the separation process. We live in a democracy and neither a Prime Minister, the Premiers nor Junior can stop the process. It’s solely up to registered adult voters in the province of Alberta. This was pointed out via an email by a constitutional lawyer. Thanks Jon.
Alberta can go it alone. We don’t need Northern BC or the Territories, we don’t need Manitoba or Saskatchewan, but you are certainty welcome to join us. Like many readers pointed out, Alberta is currently a land locked province. We have no access to the coast and neither the Canadian government nor the BC government will give us access to the ocean under the current constitution. Under law as a province of Canada we have no legal right to ocean access. BUT, if Alberta became a country and under the UN charter, which Canada has signed, quoted directly from the charter, “sovereign nations are entitled to access to tidewater.” With Junior being Pro UN and massaging the worlds governing bodies, creepy, to get a seat on the security Council there is no way he wouldn’t grant Alberta access to the water under the UN charter. By law he can’t. If Alberta joined the UN and signed the charter as a sovereign nation we have the right to ocean access. To cover his own behind he will not even attempt to have his vision of rainbows and sunny times be criticized on the world stage. In this situation our negotiation is no longer with BC, it’s with Canada. We no longer have to deal with anyone in BC. No tree huggers, no closet environmentalist and no more secretly funded lobby groups. They have no say. We can play by the rules but let’s tip the odds in our favor by using the same rules and government agencies that are currently being used to hinder us to help us.
Canada needs access to Canadian markets. More precisely Canada needs Asia to have access to Canada and that has to be from BC thru Alberta. Junior has guaranteed it in the Transpacific Trade Partnership. If Alberta was a country that access is thru a sovereign Alberta. Guess what? Access denied. Currently the railway and highways have federal authority for interprovincial trade; we can’t deny BC passage thru our province. Nutley put in an honest yet timid effort to try but I believe she personally ran out of wine and buckled rather abruptly. As a country the rules change. Now we got some skin on the table to hedge our bets in our favor in a negotiation for which piece of ocean front property we want undeniable access too.
Because pipelines are federally regulated, BC currently has recourse of action directly to the Canadian government and the courts if they are not happy with something Alberta or any other province is doing on their coastline. If Alberta was a sovereign nation, BC would have no government body to whine too. Except the UN or world court in The Hague. Certainly if AB chose to separate BC would see that they would lose control of a portion of their coast and have no access to Canadian markets for their wine or any other goods. The option to cooperate with Alberta now suddenly seems like a very viable choice. Their only choice. BC would never want to give up all control of our new sovereign coastal property. Their only choice would be to give us what we want within a unified and strong Canada.
We hold the hand to win. We just need the right strong willed gentlemen or lady sitting at the table that has no fear, will not blink and will impose our will on our neighbors because we have the winning hand.
Do we need to have a binding vote of separation? Not yet. Do we need to have the conversation to show our neighbors our hand. Absolutely. I would have a vote that is worded like this, “Should the Alberta government investigate options to leave confederation?” This wouldn’t bind us or commit us to anything but it would show the rest of Canada that we are serious nd strengthen our position at the table. “We don’t want to yet, but the people have spoken and we could leave.”
Good people deserve good things….. at the hands of leaders who are capable and willing of quietly shouldering the burdens of tough decisions and tough negotiations. The hard working family oriented people of Alberta deserve it.
To pay homage to our big brother to the south that showed us how to be the best in the world at oil and gas extraction. It’s time to play some “Texas” holdem, Alberta style and Junior we are not bluffing. Let’s have the plebiscite.
If you like this post, forward it and have the conversation.