Premier or Lobbyist?
Right now Danielle Smith is acting as both.
Smith’s new Energy Minister, Peter Guthrie, has promised to pilot a program called R-Star. Don’t worry if you’re not familiar with R-Star. That just means you weren’t one of the politicians Smith failed to peddle the scheme to last year when she was a lobbyist.
R-Star is a pet program of a business lobby group Danielle Smith was president of in 2021. It would give royalty credits to oil and gas companies for completing cleanup activities that the law already requires them to do. You read that right. The Premier wants taxpayers to subsidize oil and gas companies by cutting their royalty payments just for cleaning up their own messes.
Polluters should pay. Not taxpayers.
Even more ludicrous is that we have a former lobbyist Premier enacting her lobbyist agenda with no electoral mandate from Albertans. If Smith is so confident in this idea she should run on it in the next election and let the people decide.
Politicizing Children’s Health
In another questionable move this week, Danielle Smith says she will forever prevent schools from requiring masking. This is a reaction to a Court of King’s Bench decision that found the UCP’s politically-driven decision to prohibit masking legally unjustified.
Smith is taking children’s health out of the hands of experts and local decisions makers.
While I hope there is never again a need for masking, removing it as a potential tool makes no sense. And we definitely shouldn’t shut healthcare experts and local school officials out of the process.
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