The Simple Plan
There comes a point when what goes on has to stop, trends have to be rejected, and a vision set forth. In Alberta I want to put forward the three objectives below.
(1) Unite the Divided.
Honest engagement, openness to new people, and a drive for cooperation, is key if anyone is ever to be successful in politics. This is especially the case in Alberta where there are possibilities for strong gains for all who are of a liberal persuasion.
Justin Trudeau, Raj Sherman, and many other leaders have said that deeper cooperation is important. The Young Liberals of Alberta can serve in this as they serve both the provincial and federal branches of Liberalism in Canada. Their constitution mandates their involvement in both parties and their purpose drives this support of these values and principles. So part of the thread that can entwine together a winning coalition of support is the Young Liberals as they stand as a point of traction for both groups.
Deeper integration doesn’t only apply to these institutions and organizations. They apply to people as well. For every person it means showing up to other events, even if they’re outside of your constituency or areas of interest. It’s about standing where there are few, speaking out amongst the many, and carving a path with vision. It means building coalitions of support within and outside the party.
(2) Represent the Unrepresented
People in Alberta believe in values that are at the core of liberalism. Values of freedom and choice, environmental stewardship, and a proactive approach to solving society’s ills, are just some of them and they are deeply rooted in Alberta.
This province and this country has failed its aboriginals. The rates of poverty and lackluster education still echos the remnants of a bygone and forgotten colonial age.
Care for our water and wildlife has suffered. A positive vision for cities hasn’t been articulated. The sustainability of our future rests on the integration of our needs and wants, along with a fundamental understanding that we as a people can only go so far even with our bountiful resources. So we need to be shepherds and care givers, while at the same time providing for ourselves.
The vision for a 21st century economy — one based on free access to information, instant communication, and adaptive regulation for a more complicated/interconnected world — is more important than ever before. Reform to intellectual rights, of creations and development, is at the core but also is the challenges of proper support of industry. We need health inspections to avoid another BSE panic and we cannot allow fear to dominate the marketplace.
There is a drastic failure in government, leadership, and, worst of all, vision. And there is a dire need for all three to solve the problems that face us as a community.
(3) It takes a Sense of Service.
We communicate not for our own benefit. We are not supposed to look solely inward for guidance. Rather, any and every political organization bent on government and substantial change must focus on serving the needs of Albertans. The fundamental purpose of a political party is service to the greater public.
This means we need better communicators, more listening politicians, and careful insight into the needs of Albertans. It means a deeper and longer lasting care for a vision, while tempered with an understanding of the public to guide us. It’s a fundamental building of capacity to communicate better but also a will to put aside the interests of the active for those who simply check the box on a ballot every four years. We are here to serve them — the voter — and the communities, beliefs, and worlds they are part of.
It means being political with a sense of purpose.