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Alberta county calls for independence referendum

Wheatland County in southern Alberta passed a resolution on Tuesday demanding changes in confederation – that if rejected by Ottawa – would trigger a referendum on Alberta’s independence.

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STRATHMORE, AB: Wheatland County in southern Alberta passed a resolution on Tuesday demanding changes in confederation – that if rejected by Ottawa – would trigger a referendum on Alberta’s independence.

The resolution, by Jason Wilson, a councillor in Wheatland County, was passed unanimously and will now be sent to municipalities and cities across Alberta for their input.

The motion calls for the province’s withdrawal from the Canada Pension Plan, a start to collecting it’s own income tax, the end of equalization payments, Senate reform, replacing the RCMP and better control over immigration into Alberta.

Wilson’s resolution says if those issues aren’t dealt with then a referendum on independence would be held Oct. 18, 2021.

“We can’t silence debate. I’m not a separatist. I’m an Albertan and I want to fix confederation,” Wilson said at the council meeting near Strathmore Tuesday.

Wheatland County Councillor Jason Wilson

“If things aren’t fixed we are going to continue to bend over.”

Wilson was a Jason Kenney delegate for his 2017 run for the PC leadership, and currently holds memberships in the United Conservative Party of Alberta, Freedom Conservative Party of Alberta, and the People’s Party of Canada.

People’s Party of Canada candidate for the area’s Bow River constituency Tom Ikert is also a Wheatland councillor, and voted for the motion.

The reeve of Wheatland County, Amber Link, said she expected the motion to be met with strong support across the province.

In an interview, Wilson told the Western Standard it was a deep sense of frustration that led to him bringing forward the motion.

He said while door-knocking for a friend running for office, all he heard from voters was their frustration where Alberta is at the moment in Confederation.

“I’m a sixth generation Albertan. Our family has lost members in both World Wars. They were fighting for a better future that might now be getting thrown under the bus. Our family didn’t lose (a member) in World War One to have Justin Trudeau throw away all our values,” he said.

Wilson said he will now work with other municipal officials across the province to “tweak” the motion to have it ready for a central zone meeting in February, followed by a province-wide meeting in March.

Wilson’s entire motion can be read below.

Whereas: Alberta contributes more, per person, to the national economy than any other province.  With only 12% of Canada’s population, Alberta attracts one quarter of all capital investment in the country and is responsible for more than one fifth of all Canadian goods exported.

Whereas: Albertan workers contribute far more to the Canada Pension Plan than its retirees take out.  In 2017, 16.5% of all CPP contributions came from Alberta workers, while just 10.6% of CPP expenditures made their way back to the province. If Alberta were to remove itself from the Canadian pension Plan, the current CPP rate (9.9%) would have to increase to 10.6%, resulting in up to $367 in additional contributions (in the form of payroll taxes) for workers outside of Alberta. Meanwhile, Albertans would pay just 5.85% for a CPP-like program for the province.

Whereas: A Statistics Canada 2017 report states that the Government of Canada generated $50.3 billion from Alberta taxpayers and only spent $28.5 billion in Alberta. Albertans pay more in federal taxes than we get back in federal spending. Meanwhile, the federal government generated $53.7 billion from Quebec taxpayers and spent $70.1 billion in Quebec.

Whereas: The Province of Alberta is under-represented in both houses of Parliament. While holding 12% of the nation’s population, Alberta only commands 10% of the seats in The House of Commons with 34 seats, and 5.7% of the seats in The Senate (6 seats). The Maritime provinces; Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island hold 5.1% the total population of Canada, yet they hold 22% of the seats within The Senate (24 seats).

Whereas:   The North-West Mounted Police were founded in 1873 with a military culture, and that remains a central aspect of the RCMP culture today. Over the last number of decades the changing of society has caused the RCMP to change into an inefficient and poor service. As Wheatland County has found, having five different Divisions and many detachments under staffed, with no future plans of reaching the organizations own recommendation of officers per capita, the national police force is no longer fulfilling local needs across the Province of Alberta.

Whereas: Alberta accepted 38,683 immigrants in 2018 and Quebec (with a populations twice the size of Alberta), accepted 47,903 immigrants. The Province of Alberta accepted 61% more immigrants per capita than Quebec, while having no way to regulate or refuse immigration. Alberta is allowed only to choose 5500 economic immigrants, unlike Quebec which has stronger authority over the province’s immigration.

Therefor be it resolved: The Government of Alberta act on the following recommendations in order to insert Alberta’s constitutional rights within confederation.

  1. That the Province of Alberta withdraw from the Canada Pension Plan and create an Alberta Pension Plan offering the same benefits at lower cost while giving Alberta control over the investment fund. Pensions are a provincial responsibility under section 94A of the Constitution Act. 1867.
  2. That the Province of Alberta collects its own revenue from personal income tax, as the province already does for corporate income tax. There is no reason to have Ottawa collect Alberta’s revenue. Any incremental cost of collecting our own personal income tax would be far outweighed by the policy flexibility that Alberta would gain.
  3. That the Province of Alberta use Section 88 of the Supreme Court’s decision in the Quebec Secession Reference to REMOVE EQUALIZATION from the Canadian Constitution. The federal government and other provinces must seriously consider a proposal for constitutional reform endorsed by “a clear majority on a clear question” in a provincial referendum.
  4. That the Province of Alberta again uses Section 88 of the Supreme Court’s decision in the Quebec Secession Reference to demand Senate reform.. Alberta has acted decisively in holding Senate elections. Now is the time to drive the issue further.
  5. That the Province of Alberta start preparing options to replace the RCMP as the province’s police force.  Alberta is a unique province and needs a police force operated, owned, and directed by the people they serve. Like the other major provinces of Ontario and Quebec, we should have our own provincial police force that answers to the Government of Alberta and understands the regional needs throughout the province. We have no doubt that Alberta can run a more efficient and effective police force than Ottawa can.
  6. That the Province of Alberta enter into an agreement with the federal government, similar to the Canada-Quebec Accord, allowing Alberta to oversee its own immigration that depicts the regional, cultural and economic needs of the Province.

Further be it resolved: If the federal government does not deal with these demands in good faith; if they block, hinder, or otherwise prevent Alberta from exercising its rights as outlined above, that the Government of Alberta will hold a Referendum with a “clear question”, as defined by The Clarity Act, on the secession of Alberta from the Canadian Confederation on October 18th 2021. 


Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard and the Vice-President: News Division of Western Standard New Media Corp. He has served as the City Editor of the Calgary Sun and has covered Alberta news for nearly 40 years. dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com

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15 Comments

15 Comments

  1. Sheane

    November 9, 2019 at 4:44 pm

    While I agree 110% that we should withdraw from the U.N. I would suggest we do it after we separate as there are many protection in the U.N. charter that help make separation easier. There are also U.N. treaties that make things like the Trans mountain easier as a sovereign nation easier to accomplish than as a province. Take advantage of this corrupt group and then flush them is my thinking.

  2. Vic

    November 9, 2019 at 1:25 am

    CBC says western alienation is either foolish, overly emotional, or based on a lie
    https://fireside.fm/s/DHtJFDKG+XTDTV3fz

    Please share!
    Thank you

  3. Bryan Taylor

    November 8, 2019 at 10:29 pm

    Traitors

  4. brian

    November 6, 2019 at 11:56 pm

    These anti Oil policies which constitute in effect an EMBARGO have caused hope to vacate the morale of hard-working Alberta oil workers and non-oil workers in small businesses that rely on community economics. As a result, the suicide rate has spiked and I consider Trudeau to be the long-distance murderer of every last one of these victims.

    • Carter

      November 7, 2019 at 9:28 pm

      Albertans will show (subsidized Quebec)How is done.Indepedence is solution.not a problem.

  5. Terri Fisher

    November 6, 2019 at 8:33 am

    I admire your plan however don’t believe the sitting government nor the people of Canada would support this. When you consider and please look this up. A federally funded Voter’s handbook for Muslims. Now when I first saw this. I wondered now why would it not be called Voter’s Handbook for New Canadians especially when federal funding made this possible. why would we single out one minority. Well I would suggest if you do one thing go and read that ~ not non partisan… think you will be shocked as they tell Canadians that the Conservatives and Sheer are islamaphobiic…etc….etc…..Did I mention that this was released 3 days before a federal election. I am so angry that the liberal government took their right to vote for who they want as a Canadian can. Instead they were unfairly robbed of their democracy, Brilliant play by the corrupt Liberal government that certainly ensure they vote for them for years to come. Our system is so broken I don’t believe with the corruption in present day politics is worth saving. As a Conservative all my life I will cast a vote for Separation and it will be YES. That is just one example of how we do politics in 2020

    • NS Powers III

      November 7, 2019 at 3:23 am

      Separate. No treaties, no UN.
      EVERY ONE YOUNG AND OLD GET READY FOR STEP TWO. SEPARATE. ALBERTA THE LAND OF THE FREE.

  6. J Frankland

    November 5, 2019 at 6:18 pm

    EXCELLENT!

  7. Loreen McDonald

    November 5, 2019 at 5:00 pm

    Yippy.

    Someone has a backbone

  8. Bruce

    November 5, 2019 at 4:11 pm

    Absolutely. Well done. Correct direction/ In MD Foothills county

  9. Sarina Cliplef

    November 5, 2019 at 3:37 pm

    This is excellent. I think was is critical to be added, though, is that we completely divorce ourselves from the U.N. as well.

  10. jim bjarneson

    November 5, 2019 at 3:01 pm

    think Jason Wilson is on the track

    • Luka

      November 5, 2019 at 10:49 pm

      It’s about time we see something like this, let’s make this happen. Nothing is ever accomplished by standing still!

    • Brian Mac Namara

      November 6, 2019 at 3:22 pm

      As a Canadian citizen living in Ontario, I would be very sad to see the West separate . That said, it is impossible for me not to fully understand and agree that you Must give the Eastern so called Elite no further room for obfuscation. Either you MUST get equal and FAIR TREATMENT or you will leave Confederation.

  11. Kaye Taylor

    November 5, 2019 at 2:29 pm

    Excellent research and great thought was put into the above motion put forward to strathmore county!! Excellent!!

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News

War room launches American offensive

The approximately $240,000 initiative is “a reminder to Americans that their friends and allies in Canada hold solutions to cleaner energy and lower gas prices – and the key to a strong post-pandemic economic recovery.”

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Alberta’s energy war room kicked of a quarter-million-dollar campaign to sell Americans on Canada’s oil.

As first reported in the Western Standard, the campaign kicked off with billboards in Times Square in New York City and Washinton, DC.

The campaign by the Canadian Energy Centre asks Americans to choose Canadian oil imports first for solutions to cleaner energy production and a break from rising prices at the pumps.

The US uses approximately nine million barrels of oil per day beyond what is produced domestically. 

The approximately $240,000 initiative is “a reminder to Americans that their friends and allies in Canada hold solutions to cleaner energy and lower gas prices — and the key to a strong post-pandemic economic recovery.”

The outdoor and online campaign will direct people to information about Canada’s responsible energy development at www.friendlyenergy.com

The campaign will also feature a grassroots component that calls on Canadians and Americans to respectfully advocate to the president and U.S. lawmakers about the benefits of Canadian energy.

“We want to give our American friends the information they need to urge their leaders to look to safe, responsible and increasingly less intensive crude from Canada that U.S. refiners need and that will help keep gas prices down,” said Canadian Energy Centre CEO Tom Olsen.

“We are speaking out for the many Canadians and Americans dismayed that the U.S. government asked OPEC+ countries for more oil to curb rising gas prices, rather than working with Canada.”

Olsen pointed out the U.S. government closed the door on the Keystone XL pipeline, which would have been the first pipeline operated at net-zero emissions and eventually powered by renewable energy resources.

“While Keystone XL’s fate has been decided for now, there remains urgency in letting Americans know any further threatened sanctions in the U.S. on pipelines by state governments and activist-led court challenges will be detrimental to American families, struggling to get back on their feet from the economic impacts of COVID-19,” he said.

Of the top 10 countries from which the U.S. imported oil in June 2021, three were designated Not Free (Russia, Saudi Arabia and Iraq) and three were designated as Partly Free (Mexico, Nigeria and Colombia).

Specifics for the billboard advertising include:

  • Two digital billboards in Times Square for a four-week period and online display campaign promoting Canada as the responsible and reliable energy provider for the U.S.
  • A static digital billboard, located in Astor on New York’s Grand Central Parkway, for a two-week period targeting traffic heading to LaGuardia Airport, the Mets Citi Field Stadium and a “chokepoint” for traffic to Queens.
  • Three full-motion digital billboards for a two-week period on the exterior of the Capital One Arena in Washington, D.C., home of the NBA’s Washington Wizards, the NHL’s Washington Capitals and the NCAA’s Georgetown Hoyas.
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News

Farkas pledges to freeze taxes for four years

Farkas said every year Calgarians are told they have to accept increased taxes or face cuts to services.

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Calgary mayoral candidate Jeromy Farkas released the first plank of his platform Monday, pledging to freeze taxes for four years.

“Over the past 10 years, Calgarians have struggled with lack of opportunity. We’ve witnessed the economy crumble, the tax burden increase, and the city hall establishment become increasingly out of touch. It’s time for that to change,” said Farkas in a release.

“If elected as mayor, I will champion a four-year property tax freeze for homes and businesses. Now more than ever, Calgarians need a strong and growing economy. This four-year tax freeze will throw a lifeline to struggling families, seniors, and small business owners, and give them the certainty that they need to get back on their feet.”

Farkas said economist Jack Mintz reviewed the promise and found it to be an achievable goal, with the millions the city has stashed aside in various reserve funds.

“Implementing a four-year residential and non-residential tax freeze is undoubtedly achievable,” said Mintz,

“The best part is this plan can be implemented without reductions to city services given the excess reserves available and reasonable growth forecasts.”

Farkas said every year Calgarians are told they have to accept increased taxes or face cuts to services.

“It’s time to put this false choice to rest with common-sense financial management,” said the Farkas campaign, adding the tax bill for the typical home has doubled over the last decade while basic city services have remained stagnant or even declined.

“This election is about change versus more of the same. As councillor, I’ve consistently opposed needless budget increases. I have a record of following through on my promises. Change starts now, with a four-year tax freeze,” Farkas said.

Calgarians go to the polls October 18.

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Poll shows Canadians trust the Internet and know what’s fake news

Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault’s department has proposed “concrete action” to police news and information on the internet.

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Despite Liberal attempts to censor the Internet, the vast majority of Canadians think online information is reliable and people can tell when its not, says the feds own internal polling.

Blacklock’s Reporter said Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault’s department has proposed “concrete action” to police news and information on the Internet.

“A majority, 80%, believe the online content they consume is factual and truthful,” said a pollsters’ report.

“Two-thirds of Canadians, 66%, feel confident in their ability to tell if online content is fair and balanced.”

The Heritage department paid Ipsos Public Affairs $164,621 to conduct online focus groups and questionnaires with 5,207 people.

“Almost all Canadians are frequently consuming some form of information online,” wrote researchers.

“Canadians largely believe having access to different sources of information with different points of view is important for people to participate in a democracy.

“Most participants were confident in their abilities to consider various sources and ensure they are being presented with ‘the full picture.’”

Guilbeault last July 2 issued a report to instruct the media on how to report the news.

“We can no longer ignore the challenges and opportunities that come with an increasingly digital world,” said Guilbeault.

“We have to act now to ensure a healthy ecosystem online for all citizens.”

Reporters, editors and commentators must “foster greater exposure to diverse cultural content, information and news” and “contribute to a healthier public discourse, greater social inclusion within society, bolster resilience to disinformation and misinformation and increase our citizens’ ability to participate in democratic processes,” said the report.

The guide defined misinformation as “false or misleading content shared without harmful intent though the effects can still be harmful, e.g. when people share false information with friends and family in good faith.”

The document doesn’t say who within the Heritage department would monitor news deemed to be harmful.

“Ethical journalistic standards should be upheld and encouraged,” said the guide, adding: “Information about media ownership and funding sources should be made accessible to the public and transparent to safeguard a diverse and pluralistic media ecosystem.”

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