Ralph Klein has gone and it is time to retire Ralph's World. Thanks to all of you who have supported this venture by contributing material and through your comments. It has been fun.

Should we get another blog underway? Let me know your thoughts by e-mailing me at johnnyslow@gmail.com.

John Slow
January 1, 2007

Monday, September 13, 2004

The outright lies explained - start writing! 

John Clark
September 13, 2004.


Honorable Ralph Klein,
Room 307
Legislative Building,
Edmonton, AB T4K 2C6

Dear Premier:-

Alberta being out of debt is an outright lie. Quite the contrary, you have driven us into debt like no other premier in our history! What you have done is directed the debt from the Government to Government initiated and controlled “private companies” and “authorities”. The “companies” do the work that government departments once did. The bills still come to the tax payers while you dodge the responsibilities.

You structure these “companies” to side step questions and criticism and refer quickly to “market prices” and “market pressures” as if they were the design of some one other than your Government! This same scam allows you to misdirect responsibilities to these same “companies” saying to the public you have no control or authority. If ministers are no longer responsible why are they getting the big bucks?

You have tabled 100 billions of dollars plus of projects in power generation, power transmission water pipelines rail, inter basin transfer resulting in privatization of water and you have no financial plan for payment put forward. In other words, we are some 100 billions of dollars into debt but we are forced to pay it to your organizations rather than our Government as taxes. Cheaper? Not a chance with your cost plus “bids” and guaranteed profit scales!

Oil Companies pay Alberta the lowest royalties in the world. Of this there is no doubt. These same companies have tax dispensations which allow them to write off revenue for “unforeseen future losses”.

According to your figures the top 10 oil companies pulled out 12.6 billions of dollars in profits from the oil sands in the year ending 2003. Cost of production has remained stable while profits soar in 2004. Your projections of 60 dollars per barrel coupled with the fact more companies will move from the 1% realm in royalty to the 25% lowball realm will push oil companies profits for the year ending 2004 to above 25 billions of dollars!

An additional 15% or even 20% royalties would not affect the stock market but would affect the stock dividends on oil which you are going to fight at any cost to Albertans. Even with the additional 20% coming to Albertans, oil shares would be more attractive than almost every other type of stock on the market!

Rather than tax away windfall profits for the benefit of Albertans you position Peter Elzinga into the oil industry to be your Official Spin Doctor. On the other side you have positioned Steve West in to control your ministers and our elected MLAs.

Albertans are going into debt by 100 billions of dollars and you expect every household and business in Alberta to pick up the tab while you guard your share dividends in the oil companies.

I have asked if the 358 millions of dollars in budget for consumer protection on power prices are going to extend to price increases in power transmission. No answer yet so we can assume that it doesn’t. Ralph’s deal is no deal at all! As electrical generation increases the prices usually drop. On the other hand, the billions of dollars going into power transmission lines are being charged to consumers under your “equalization” program.

Even here, the stock dividends are your only focus! Wind power is only functional 30% of the time. This leaves 70% (more billions of dollars) of the power lines built for export to be paid for by Albertans in general.

If your power subsidy of 358 millions is only for power and not for transmission as appears to be the case, Albertans can look for increases of hundreds of dollars per month in their electrical bills. And, it will take more than 358 millions to cover these costs! No help here for people on fixed pensions and wages!

I have asked the Honorable Mike Cardinal about his massive sale of lands on the eastern slope of the Rockies and have no response. As this area being sold off is the origin of our fresh water aquifers I have asked questions regarding water rights. Did you sell off the water allotments on these public lands?

I think Albertans deserve some straight conversation rather than your defensive comment. I would also like to hear you say you will give us another 20% of the oil profits which you have given away!

John Clark

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