Sunday, June 7, 2009

WIldrose Alliance AGM - part II

In the previous post, I anonymized names of the few people I took issue with because the point is not to turn anyone's opinion against anyone else but to make a point in the abstract about how we should deal with each other.

Do I think Danielle Smith is the dream candidate? In fairness, she was a bit wooden. And she doesn't seem to have that extremely extroverted personality that many successful politicians have whereby they don't leave a room without having, unobtrusively of course, gotten and remembered everyone's name, and more importantly had everyone there feel they had connected with her. But the overwhelmingly majority of the time these people have little else to offer. When one considers that she is something of a policy wonk, she gives a great speech. Bottom line is that the substance is there and, as a bonus, the substance is camera friendly. She referred to the New Royalty Framework as "rent", which of course delighted me because it was a "dog whistle", intended or not, that people that have worked as professional economists would recognize. She quoted Jack Mintz! She defended a rationale of having spending growth limited to inflation and population growth.

Will it sell politically? Probably not, to be honest. But the media will be working overtime to try and get her views inserted into policy debates that the Stelmach crew will be dumbing down.

People are not ideological. Why did government expand so much between the 1930s and the 70s? In large part because the Great Depression suggested capitalism alone simply did not work. And it was the stagflation of the 70s the launched the conservative renaissance of the 80s. The Crisis of 2008 was another turning point. The significance of this is that people will turn against whomever or whatever was in the driving seat when the car hits the ditch. It doesn't matter what Stelmach's philosophy is, if he drives the economy into the ditch (and he seems to be on his way) the electorate will go with something else. It's pretty hard to do in Alberta, given its resource income, but it is still possible.


Anonymous said...

Danielle is wooden?

Perhaps in comparison to the vacuous, reality/game show host types who populate modern politics -- the very people The People are sick of.

Danielle is real. I have met her more than once.

You will warm to her and she will get in a groove re: meet'n'greet.

Anonymous said...

I can't even begin to tell you how excited I am for Danielle to take the reigns of the WRA.

And no disrespect to Hinman or the other leadership candidates, but she clearly is a voice (and face) that a fiscally conservative, socially libertarian party, really needs.

She will have my vote.