Theatre of Leadership

 So now our premier will be entertaining his followers with a call-in radio show.

The premise is that every day Albertans can call in and ask the premier any question that they want. 

Altruistically, this is a great idea. It opens the lines of communication between leader and follower. However, the actions this premier has taken in the past, and how he continues to operate leave me with many doubts as to the motivation behind this new way for him to connect. 

We have seen again and again who our premier truly cares about. He kills funding on health and child care, continues to allow utility companies to do whatever they want cost-wise, and then lowers the taxes on chewing tobacco. You know highlighting all the important things we should be worried about. 

Anyone who thinks that all calls won't be pre-screened and pre-recorded must not have been paying attention. Did you watch any of the covid press conferences that the premier attended? Any of the questions that he deigned to answer were softballs, or he would give a non-answer and then go in the opposite direction and talk about how great he was. Let us not forget him answering with "I refuse the premise of that question". 

It's clear who our premier supports, and it isn't the majority of us. If you aren't an oil and gas company if you don't in some way think that the convoy is really on to something, then he just isn't fighting for you. He doesn't care about the average Albertan, because he knows that we question, we see through the greasy smile and condescending speeches. We all know how much he loves to hear himself speak, and how he sees himself as a great leader of the people. I think he and most of his MLAs have forgotten that they work for the people. All of the people, not just a select few.

We see him for who he is. A bible college dropout who according to his own submitted information shared a one-bedroom apartment in an old folk's home with his mom in SW Calgary before his election. The same man who laughed and grinned when he spoke about heading legislation that wouldn't allow the spouses of people dying of AIDS to visit them in hospital while he was working and going to bible school in San Francisco. 

He refuses to speak up for the rest of us. He refuses to censure members of his party who call Tamara Lich a hero when she is being held for breaking the law. He refuses to listen. Because if he listens he would know what a farce his leadership has become, and how much he has failed our province. He has a leadership review soon. It doesn't make me hopeful. Slimy men always find a way to bounce back with their own people. And the election is a long way off. 

One thing I do know about this province and its citizens is that ultimately we all want the same thing. We are all hard-working people who care about each other and in a pinch would help each other out. This current government is alienating us and making our differences seem much larger than they are. A pretend free speech radio show isn't going to change that. Uniting together to rid ourselves of a man from Ontario who saw our province as a stepping stone to federal leadership will be a big step in the right direction. Start thinking about who you are going to elect next. Because I don't think we can survive more of his style of leadership. 

Past politicos in Alberta have also had radio shows. Some are more successful than others. The difference for most of them is that the radio show came after their political careers come to an end. Maybe this signals something, or it'll be more like the last sitting provincial representative to have a show. William "Bible Bill"  Aberhart used his platform to discuss why he supported eugenics while touting his Baptist views. 

Listen to the show if you're into it, or don't. If you do though, listen with a critical ear. Propaganda is a powerful drug. 

There was only one song that ran through my head as I wrote this. The Ballad of Peter Pumpkinhead by XTC was written in 1992 by the lead singer and writer of the band, Andy Partridge. The song is about a man who spreads money and cash around thus becoming popular with the people, but an enemy of the government. At the end of the song, he is nailed to a cross of wood. This song was covered by Crash Test Dummies for the Dumb and Dumber soundtrack in 1994. This version may be a little more well-known. 

The original song has two different music videos, one more heavily censored than the other. The first uses a lot of JFK-based imagery, and the second imagines Peter as more of a Christ figure, including a crucifixion. 


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