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As Canada 150 winds down, I thought I'd give my thoughts on the issue, particularly after seeing the debates on it.
In 2004, American political scientist Samuel Huntington wrote an essay titled “Dead Souls: The Denationalization Of The American Elite.” In it, Huntington described the trend among many elites to identify more with the cosmopolitan world than with their individual countries. Huntington also described how much the elites’ views were differing from those of the rest of the public who still identified with their countries.
When Justin Trudeau became Prime Minister in 2015, Trudeau charmed many Canadians with his social media skills and courting millennial votes. He was seen as representing new, energetic change, shaking up the tired Stephen Harper status quo.
Now that the Progressive Conservative and Wildrose Alliance parties have voted overwhelmingly to merge into what’s being called the United Conservative Party (UCP), it’s worth looking back at the history of Alberta conservatism and how the new UCP might fit into it.
I'm writing this on the morning of Canada Day 2017, Canada's 150th anniversary, thinking about all the fascinating things I've read and the people I've met. One thing that I've come across is how much time and effort we as Canadians spend trying to define exactly what being Canadian means.
Canada Day, particularly its 150th anniversary, is an ideal time to consider how Canada has developed, and what the future holds for our country. Curiously enough, it is also an ideal time to consider how St. Albert has developed, and what the future holds for our city.
One of the most prominent debates in Alberta politics right now is the proposal to merge the Wildrose Alliance and the Progressive Conservatives to form a new party to take on the governing NDP in the next election.
St. Albert Mayor Nolan Crouse’s sudden decision to drop out of the Alberta Liberal leadership race was surprising. However, what may not have been so surprising was that he was the only declared candidate for the leadership until he dropped out. Finally, on the deadline of March 31, two last-minute candidates signed up, sparing the Liberals the indignity of a leadership race where no one showed up.
I’ve heard a lot of different predictions about what will happen in this year’s St. Albert election. One person suggested to me that either the people who support the ‘status quo’ of spending on City projects, or the people who support cutting back on different kinds of spending, will win a majority on Council. Another person predicted that all the incumbent members of Council would be removed.
During the federal Conservative leadership race, Kellie Leitch has gotten more attention than most candidates, due in large part to her proposal to screen new immigrants for “Canadian values”. The proposal has gotten Leitch a lot of support, but it’s also gotten her a lot of criticism from people who say that the proposal is racist. White ethnic nationalists have even latched onto Leitch’s campaign, in much the same way as their American counterparts have to President Donald Trump. Since then, Leitch has denied that her campaign is based on ethnic nationalism. Instead, she says, it is based on civic values. Her campaign website indicates that the “Canadian values” she promotes include gender equality, freedom of religion, freedom and tolerance.

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