Left wing advisor


I read a column in the Jan. 4 Edmonton Sun written by Tom Parkin that got me steamed up.

I checked his profile and discovered that he has worked for the Ontario Public Service Employees Union, the Labour Education Centre and a number of similar organizations.

He is obviously a labour union sympathizer and in the column he is presuming to tell conservatives to keep the far right in check. However he didn’t say anything about keeping the far left in check.

He said Bill 6 was a government bill to stop senseless deaths in a dangerous industry.

He seems to think that the spontaneous rallies and protests that took place were “Trump-style” insurgency politics and were motivated by extreme right wing Wildrose supporters.

I would suggest that Bill 6 was concocted by an extreme left wing government that did not understand the culture of Alberta’s agricultural producers.

Had the government consulted and communicated with producers what they were trying to achieve there may not have been any protests at all.

Agriculture producers are not opposed to farm workers being properly paid and protected should they get injured on the job.

I take real exception to him describing Alberta’s agriculture as a “dangerous industry.”

From the information that I have been able get, Alberta’s farm safety record is no worse than any other province.

The other provinces in Canada have OH&S oversight for farm workers. I think he is comparing apples and oranges.

There may be more accidents in the agriculture industry than other industries in Alberta, but this industry has 43,000 work places.  No other industry in Alberta has the numbers – not the oil industry, not construction, forestry or numerous other work places.

All of these industries have huge oversight by OH&S and yet accidents still happen in all of them.

The productivity in these other industries has been substantially decreased due to the government oversight. If the government were to impose the same level of  oversight on the farms and ranches in Alberta as they do in the other industries there would be a severe reduction in agricultural productivity.

Tom Parkin complained that there were ugly violent remarks made at rallies that have no place in a democracy.

Yes, there probably were comments made at some of these protest rallies that would have been better left unsaid however if he thinks that the way the NDP government rammed this legislation down the throat of us agricultural producers is democracy then he has a strange interpretation of democracy.

Ramming legislation through that would fundamentally change the way the industry works without prior consultation is not democracy.

The government deserved the abuse that they received. What was the real reason to pass legislation of this magnitude through with such haste?  It could have been put on hold until the next legislative session and that would have allowed time for proper consultation.

Governments, especially left wing governments, seem to thrive on the idea of centralized government control. Alberta Health Services is a good example.

This NDP government does not like the idea of agricultural producers deciding what insurance coverage they should provide for their employees. They want to make it mandatory for everyone to use WCB even though there are private plans that are superior for many farm situations.

The coverage provided by WCB is mediocre at best. They are not a customer friendly organization. They spend a lot of money on doctors and lawyers to disqualify people requiring secondary coverage for past injuries.

When an organization requires bulletproof glass on their doors and windows for their own safety it tells you something.

I think Mr. Parkin needs to quite criticizing right wing conservatives and understand why they were upset at the motivation of that NDP legislation.

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