In case you are wondering just who are the sponsors of the forthcoming Palin-Wallin Calgary conservative gabfest, they are listed on a series of half page ads in the hapless Calgary Herald.
At the top of the list is Walton. Walton is a private Calgary-based land investment company estimated to be worth gazillions and with holdings in many corners of the world. The company has been a soft landing for several right-wing retired politicos who have joined its advisory board after the sun had set on their careers. Among the lucky ones who have landed this sought-after lucrative sinecure are Ernest Manning’s son Preston, conservative gadfly and political groupie Thompson MacDonald, and most recently, ex-Premier Ralph Klein.
The right-wing think tank, The Fraser Institute (surprise, surprise), is also on the list. Among its former directors are those great Canadian role models Conrad Black, David Radler, and Peter Pocklington. Oh yes, the Fraser Institute has also had among its ranks a noted plagiarist by the name of Dr. Owen Lippert. Dr. Lippert who served the institute as a senior fellow and policy analyst, you will recall, took the rap for Stephen Harper when it was disclosed that Harper had given a plagiarized speech in the House of Commons in defence of Canada entering the war in Iraq.
Enmax Corporation is also a sponsor. Enmax is a 2 billion dollar energy distribution company wholly owned by the City of Calgary. Among its directors are Cliff Fryers, a former pooh-bah of the Reform and Alliance parties and loyal and faithful man-servant to Preston Manning, ex-Ontario premier Mike ‘Duffer’ Harris famous for his ‘Common Sense’ nonsense revolution of years gone by, former Klein-era Tory cabinet minister Greg Melchin, and the ubiquitous Thompson MacDonald.
The Rogers Group is also on the list. Apart from the usual assortment of conservative Bay Street captains of industry and members of the Rogers family that grace its board, surprisingly there appears to be a token Liberal – none other than David Peterson, former Ontario Premier who was confined to the dust heap of history by Bob Rae when he led the Ontario NDP to power almost twenty years ago.
The Progressive Group for Independent Business is a sponsor. It’s advisory council is a Who’s Who of Calgary’s lunatic far right including failed Wild Rose Alliance leadership candidate Mark Dyrholm, and uber rabid anti-gay rights conservative motor mouth Craig Chandler. Chandler has had mostly controversial associations with the Social Credit, federal and provincial Progressive Conservative, and Canadian Alliance parties. He has openly apologized to the citizens of the United States for Canada’s unwillingness to invade Iraq, was rejected by Premier Stelmach as a Progressive Conservative candidate to contest a provincial election, and has had run ins with the Alberta Human Rights Commission and the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council. Among his more noteworthy public statements in 2007 the Ontario-born Chandler informed others who came to reside in Alberta:
"You came to here to enjoy our economy, our natural beauty and more. This is our home and if you wish to live here, you must adapt to our rules and our voting patterns or leave. Conservatism is our culture. Do not destroy what we have created."
For more on the distinguished career of the tolerant Mr. Chandler see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Craig_Chandler
And of course – you guessed it – the Calgary Herald is also a sponsor of this ‘Make Ditzy Sarah Rich’ event. The Herald’s participation was no doubt driven by its tiresome, ideological editors and scribes who have turned that once venerable publication into a second rate right wing pamphlet.
Bedford Biofuels, Oilsands Quest Inc. (which has Sarah’s stage prop Ms. Wallin on its board), the Jaymor Group, Land Rover Calgary, Business in Calgary, and It's Me, round out the list of advertised patrons.
All of this info is provided to you in case you are wondering what makes much of the cowtown tick. Dysfunctional? You think?