First of all, you guys are AH-MAY-ZING. The response to my lame attempt at fundraising for this blog was outstanding and humbling and I seriously love you all so much. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
Given how hard y’all have shown your support, I figured it was time to get my ass in gear and actually write something, but decided to offer something different this time around. Consider this post a smorgasbord – a little bit of this and that from around the province, courtesy awesome small-town or city news outlets. Never fear, however, a Sask Party leadership post is in the works, as is one on what the Saskatchewan government spent your money on in 2016-17, and with who. Enjoy.
Battlefords-Lloydminster Conservative Party Nomination Race
The Tory nomination for the by-election to replace former MP Gerry Ritz is already hotly contested. Rumor has it that Sask Party MLA Jeremy Harrison will be throwing his hat in the ring, which, frankly, probably makes the most sense if he wants a political future in this province. In the meantime, the current race is… interesting.
The first candidate to jump in was Aron Klassen, whose slogan includes “Our Communities. Our Values” (not a dog whistle).
His platform includes: the right to protect “property and family” (absolutely not the same) “without fear of legal recourse”; “prioritizing the family and rural lifestyle” (urban and childless? screw you), and fiscal conservatism ie. “the more money one has… stronger the Canadian economy is” and “MP’s have the right to hold their government accountable…in the house of commons…”
Okay stop. On the latter, if you’re going to run for Parliament, show us evidence you have at least the grammar skillz of a Grade 8 student, k? BTW, Esquire has some great tips on how not to look like a white nationalist, which I’m sure he’s not.
Rosemarie Falk is a young woman and mother throwing her hat in the political ring, which is awesome and admirable, so all I’m going to do is advise her to flesh out her campaign website, stat.
And then there’s hopeful Ken Finlayson. I think all I need to do is leave you with Ken’s picture and a quote from this news story.
Unbuilding the Saskatchewan Psychiatric Hospital/Jail
While we’re talking about northwest Saskatchewan, how about this little doozy from the Battleford News Optimist regarding the P3 construction of the new Saskatchewan Hospital (emphasis mine):
“An issue with the material used for insulation at the new facility has been identified and will be addressed over the coming weeks, with the defective insulation material being removed and new insulation put in.“
According to Lisa Danyluk, director of strategy and engagement for SaskBuilds, the problem was identified through “rigorous quality-control regime on site” by the (P3) consortium in charge of the project.
“What folks might see is some scaffolding going up, and then the masonry and exterior cladding on the outside of the building is going to be coming down.”
In other words, they have to tear down and rebuild the exterior. Danyluk was also adamant that we understand that it is the P3 private partner, not the taxpayer, paying for this construction eff-up – which make no mistake, is massive one.
The provincial government will insist that this is precisely the reason P3 projects make sense – the private partner absorbs the cost of a risk which came to fruition (though let’s be clear, either the insulation manufacturer or an insurer will be paying, not the private partner). Yet it’s also precisely this type of risk that the taxpayer is paying a huge premium for: risk that is measured and allocated in advance with absolutely no empirical evidence, and then triumphantly justified by the government waving around an example of the private partner eating the cost of their own shoddy construction and/or materials used in the build of new public infrastructure.
Doesn’t that make you feel so much better?
Chaos in Carlyle
SGI would like us all to get our shit together and stop the traffic madness on Main Street in Carlyle.
“When turning left at an intersection (including u-turns), a lot is going on and the driver must be extra cautious and watch out for all vehicle and pedestrian traffic. Not all drivers follow the rules of the road and in this situation in particular, one should slow down and drive prepared for others to make mistakes,” Tyler McMurchy, SGI’s Manager of Media Relations, who apparently intimately aware of this pressing situation in particular, told the Carlyle Observer.
I love Saskatchewan so freaking much.
Premier Says Province Should Probably Still Open a Savings Account. Someday.
The Premier, who’s leaving in two months, told Pipeline news he thinks Saskatchewan should still open a Sovereign Wealth Fund (savings account).
You know, that day, after he’s gone, when Saskatchewan moves away from relying on resource revenue, and when oil prices come back.
(If we’re no longer relying on resource revenue, don’t ask me why we’d have to wait until oil prices come back to start saving money.)
Look, you had ten years to move off resource revenue and wean the province “off of the great dependence of it financially”.
You spent – sorry, “invested” – every penny, and yes, on infrastructure, though don’t talk to me about recent school, long-term care, major highways or hospitals projects, because almost every one of those won’t be paid for until both myself and my great-grandkids are in diapers.
As a publicist I admire Wall’s deftness at dodging the question, which was “do you think we should have” (past tense) opened a savings account, not “do you think we should” someday.
As a taxpayer, I’m unimpressed.
I’ll Have What She’s Having
This Saskatchewan woman is 100-years old (seriously!!):
I KNOW, RIGHT?!? She looks AMAZING.
Damn, Elsie, what’s your secret?
Well for starters, no white flour or sugar, she told the Kamsack Times.
““Also, I drink water with lemon in it every day and eat whole flax with breakfast or porridge. I eat a spoonful of molasses each day and I drink a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in a glass of water.” The only soft drink she allows herself is the occasional ginger ale.”
Her eyesight is failing and she’s wearing a knee brace, but she still lives in her own home and isn’t going anywhere… and I don’t think she is for a long while yet.
Lots and lots of you have asked if I would create a Patreon page, which again, is totally mind-blowing and I’m not crying, you’re crying. I looked into it, and it’s pretty cool – basically a subscription-donation service for people who make stuff, I guess like this blog – so I did. I mean seriously, if everyone who read this blog regularly threw in a few bucks a month, um.. well things would amp up around here, let’s just leave it at that. Anyway, here is my brand new and shiny Patreon link, and thank you so much for support and for reading.
Like what you’re reading? I’d love to keep doing it for free, but I have to feed my kids, and these posts take forever to write. By clicking the Donate button below, your generous contribution makes sure I can keep doing both.