Alison Redford has been officially the premier of Alberta for, what now, 24 hours and change? And already, she is lacking in integrity and anti-democratic.
Well, I’ll say this for the new premier — she works fast.
The lacking in integrity/anti-democratic charges come from the Wildrose, who didn’t even give Redford the benefit of a modest honeymoon before barging into the electoral boudoir and criticizing her technique. The Wildrose (or more accurately, DANIELLE SMITH and the Wildrose) launched attack ads (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=klsAfLCfvaU) aimed at Redford even before she was sworn into office on Friday. In one ad, complete with the requisite unflattering black-and-white photos, Redford is accused of trying to shut down the legislature after promising openness, and promising fixed election dates, then not giving a date. After black-and-white Redford, we are then treated to full colour Smith, giving off a creepy Sarah Palin vibe, smirk-smiling while promising to always do the right thing. Like, apparently, attacking somebody before they’ve even had a chance to do anything.
Are the ads fair? Of course not. They’re simplistic and inaccurate, and will hurt the Wildrose a lot more than they’ll hurt the PCs. But the Wildrose, coffers apparently flush with oil money, clearly took note of the federal Conservative’s trashing of successive Liberal leaders by airing attack ads when there was no election campaign. The Harper ads were so effective — painting Stephane Dion as in bed with the separatists, and Michael Ignatieff as ‘just visiting’ Canada — that they contributed greatly to creating negative public images of the two leaders that they never recovered from. It’s dirty politics, but in Danielle Smith’s universe, it’s the Alberta way.
And this is just the beginning. Thanks to a source deep inside the Wildrose, I have obtained the scripts for a number of future attack ads from the party, aimed at Redford. Here they are:
• While the Keystone Pipeline was under attack in the United States, Alison Redford was throwing a lavish party… for herself. Alison Redford: no friend of Alberta industry.
• Alison Redford has promised $100 million to hire more teachers. And yet, not one single teacher has been hired yet. Alison Redford: promises not kept.
• Alison Redford has promised $100 million to hire more teachers. Who’s calling the shots in Alberta? The government… or the teachers’ union? Alison Redford: Alberta’s first NDP premier.
• Alison Redford has consorted with terrorists and criminals (show photo of Redford and Nelson Mandela)… and she was our justice minister! Alison Redford: out of touch with Alberta values.
• Alison Redford’s middle name is Merrilla … what else is she hiding? Alison Redford: a funny middle name.
• Alison Redford has been to Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Namibia, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Mozambique and the Philippines. But has she ever been to Tofield? Alison Redford: just visiting Alberta.
• Alison Redford’s chief of staff defaulted on a $600,000 judgment against him. What kind of people is she hanging around with? … Alison Redford: a bad judge of character.
• Alison Redford used to have short hair, and now it’s long …. Alison Redford: if she flip flops on her hairstyle, what else will she flip flop on?
• Alison Redford was born in Kiimat, in the People’s Republic of British Columbia. Alison Redford: not born here.
• Alison Redford has broken up the old boys’ clubs … what has she got against boys? Alison Redford. Against boys. And the elderly.
• Alison Redford is a lawyer, just like Pierre Elliott Trudeau. Alison Redford: we don’t need another Trudeau.