Friday, May 04, 2012

Peter Lougheed Wins Again

A 1975 editorial cartoon showing the early foundations
of the  Alberta PC Party's formula for success
Former Alberta Premier Peter Lougheed has been named the best "Provincial Premier" of the last 40 years.  The poll was conducted by Policy Magazine using a small number of experts and academics.  I was curious as to their methodology, since most of the time Premiers deal with localized issues.  How do you compare premiers and rate them?

Lougheed dealt with two national issues of importance; the Constitution Act of 1982, and the National Energy Program.  Both gave him a national profile.

I don't find it hard to believe that a group of historians would pick Lougheed the winner in such an analysis, however I'm always skeptical about political mythology and idolization which by it's very nature has to completely ignore alternate viewpoints and inconvenient truths.  Lougheeds legacy is not unlike Pierre Trudeau's. It's complicated. It can be polarizing.

And then there's the timing and circumstance of the award:

The exercise was part of the institute's 40th anniversary. Also part of the celebration is a tribute dinner for Peter Lougheed on June 6 in Calgary. The keynote speaker will be Alberta's newly-elected premier, Alison Redford.
What an amazing series of coincidences.  This would be a rather awkward night if they had picked Robert Bourassa.

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