Consider Tom Flanagan rehabilitated. All it took was a dead premier to get him back in the public eye. That and the Globe & Mail.
On the occasion of the passing of Ralph Klein, the G&M is running a testimonial from Tom Flanagan:
All politicians say they went into public life “to make a
difference.” Ralph Klein actually did make a difference. He showed
Alberta – and Canada – how to deal with runaway deficits and public
The Klein model was a steroidal version of short-term pain
for long-term gain. Rather than just level off the growth in spending,
he made deep actual reductions. He imposed a 5 per cent salary cut on
all public servants in Alberta, including teachers, professors and
nurses. By moving quickly, he got results. If you try to get rid of
deficits over a long period of time, the unexpected will always happen.
Tax revenues will decline, or interest rates will go up – maybe both of
those, with lots of other contingencies, too.
Ralph Klein certainly has many friends this weekend, perhaps a good many more than he had while he drew breath. All I can say about Ralph is that he seemed like a much nicer guy while he was still drinking.