When early pioneers flocked to western Canada at the turn of the century, they came because of the opportunity! The promise of opportunity outweighed the security of their homeland, customs, language, and traditions. In spite of the risk, they came. They came and built the Alberta Advantage that we once knew.
Without the luxury of grants or even a simple bank loan, the settlers quickly educated themselves about what it takes to create opportunity. The most important education a person gains in their lifetime isn’t confined to a classroom. Education is a life-long endeavor.
One of the highlights of my personal economic education came when I joined a group of agriculture producers who were determined to see real federal policy change in how and under what circumstances, we were allowed to market our own product. With the dedication and hard work of all of those who committed to our movement to defy the Wheatboard monopoly, thankfully, it created the opportunities that we as agriculture producers are still the beneficiaries of.
My experience in that activism helped me understand that real change can only happen when it starts outside the legislature. It also helped me realize that what takes place inside the Legislature, are merely the final steps in a long process that is initiated through the engagement of ordinary people just like you and me.
Recently Jason Kenney and my Colleagues, Prasad Panda and Devin Dreeshen, were criticized for their privately-funded trek to India in search of, you guessed it, opportunities that will benefit all Albertans. Time and again the NDP government has, in one way or another, hindered the advancement of Alberta’s industries, which has had a profound negative consequence to the opportunities available for Albertans.
In certain circumstances, inaction can have as much of a profound effect as actions do; such is the case with Alberta’s energy industry. The NDP have seen fit for years to denigrate Alberta’s energy industry and now with yet another delay in the Trans Mountain pipeline approval, they are only now starting to grasp how their ideological policies have hindered the progress of Alberta and eliminated countless opportunities for Albertans.
Albertans are generally resourceful people looking for a hand up, not a hand out. The goal for most is just to have an opportunity to create our own wealth. For the most part, Albertans are “can do” people that only need a regulatory path cleared for them to be successful.
If the constituents of Drumheller Stettler see fit to have me as their representative in the Alberta Legislature, I will continue to work towards creating opportunities that will benefit all Albertans. As the United Conservative Party moves forward, Albertans, and in this case, those UCP members in Drumheller Stettler, have an important opportunity to shape their destiny as well. The intended purpose of this Democratic process of a nomination is ultimately in guiding the representatives forward, hopefully to a positive, forward-thinking direction.
A friend once said to me, “people do not understand how change occurs.” The ability to influence people happens in many ways and sometimes the result of those influences can be communicated at the polling stations. The important UCP process that is happening this week as the members go to the polls to select their representative and the opportunity to guide them on the path forward Is democratically vital!
Please do your civic and democratic duty!