By Craig Funston
Hope you kept toque (and your head) on over the weekend. For me, it was just the usual 6:00 am start everyday, and with a further adjustment to write “2017” on all my cheques. Okay, so I’m not Mr. Excitement anymore (actually, I never was), but at least I have my mind and body intact.
Here are two more wishes for the New Year for you.
3. A greater accountability in Edmonton. Private education and, by extension, home education, has gone through the wringer these last few years, in general, and these last few months, in particular. Thee government has given the appearance of making sure those schools in question are using the government money appropriately. So far, so good.
But in doing so, the NDP may have revealed their true motive: Is it really about the money, or is it about something bigger? I don’t know. But I do know that between all private schools (and most are not religious, by the way), and home schools, they have saved the Alberta government millions upon millions of dollars.
Over the years? No, just last year alone!
I just read where private and home education in the past five years alone have saved the government $750 million. Over the years, then, the answer would be billions of dollars saved. And in order to “save” the government money, by making sure it’s spent correctly, it seems the government has hired a bevy of auditors. Let me re-state that: In order to make sure money is not being wasted on “wrong” things, the government appears to have added more staff–or pulled them in from other ministries.
To be honest with you, I don’t know how many, for how long, and how much money is being spent. I just know that that there is something terribly wrong with this whole scenario. There needs to be more accountability here (on the government’s part)—and I’m only addressing the education fiasco.
Earth to NDP: I have a fairly simple, practical solution: Let the private and home education programmes continue to save the government money and continue to produce great students.
And what about accountability in the area of shortsighted bills (but with far-reaching ramifications) that deal with farm safety, carbon tax, and climate change, just for starters? There have been rallies, protests, newspaper articles, and letters to the editor.
Earth to NDP—are you listening?
In its roots, the NDP was a populist party. They are neio longer populists nor popular these days. One way to improve things would be if they were more accountabie to Albertans.
4 A clear definition of terms. This wish is a real problem here in leftist Alberta, but it applies to any other left-leaning regime, media, and agency—and there are plenty of them everywhere. My simple point is let’s all say what we mean and mean what we say.
These are issues I have discussed before, so I don’t want to take up your time again. Simply put if we speak of “activists” when we really mean “anarchists,” let’s just say it. Those who defy conventional processes and institutions, all in the name of their rights (but never their responsibilities), are anarchists.
I am all for peaceful, law-abiding protests. I’ve done my share in my day. Let’s have more of them. Protests are a mark of a free society. But blatant disregard for the law, is wrong.
And when we speak of “traditional marriage,” the foundation of every civil and enduring society, let’s not re-label it “homophobia.” I am not a homophobe because I believe in traditional marriage. I’m not even a homophobe. Why can’t I believe in what I believe, without being labelled something that I’m not? That’s a pretty irrational and creative language twist.
My wish for you and yours for the New Year (or is it “new year”?) is to think through everything I have written about. It’s not just an out-of-touch and out-of-control government these concerns apply to. We all as individuals need to start afresh, to hold to conservative principles, to be more accountable, and to express ourselves accurately.
That would make for a very good New Year.