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Thursday, October 27, 2005

Failing to Come Up With a Flanagan

The Albertanist movement needs some help. Whether through the establishment of a think-tank (Sifton Institute progress report anyone?) or by attracting substantial candidates, there needs to be some further progress toward the implementation of new perspectives.

In thinking about issues of what I call 'philosophical infrastructure', Tom Flanagan has come to mind.

Flanagan is a key figure in the CPC, having ascended to be Stephen Harper's right-hand man. Flanagan's rise is due in part to his ability to establish an array of 'thought-works'---meaning policy writing and quotable summaries (Lorne Gunter notes Flanagan's pith, see his profile on Flanagan).

The University of Calgary PoliSci professor's fingerprint is evident on everything from the Alberta Agenda to Harper's stealth campaign in Ontario (bait-and-switch that looks Left, but is still Right).


As the Calgary School enters politics formally (Morton, Flanagan) their vacancies at the 'thought-works' level need to be filled.

But ther
e is also a need for more hubs for these 'thought-works'. Without these mechanisms, the Albertanist movement (i.e. reformist PCs, Alberta Alliance, Separation Party) will be subject to the whims of campaign propagandists whose goal is to win individual nominations rather than achieving widespread 'winability' for Albertanists. (I fear that the extremely valuable forum, Project Alberta, is witnessing some of the former rather than the latter).


Can the New Albertanist movement come up with a Flanagan? Let us hope so.

{Note: A critical, but nonetheless interesting piece on Flanagan appeared in the Walrus, (here)}

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"Sifton Institute progress report anyone?"

The papers were finally signed on Monday evening.

Thanks Mike,

Are there any particulars that can be released at this point?

Albertanicus, I'm glad that you're interested enough in this endeavour to be asking questions. Don't hesitate to ask these questions on the SI forum at Project Alberta. It's important for people to see that there is an interest.

I wish I could provide you a full detailed plan, but we simply don't have at the moment. I believe that the papers have been submitted to officially register the institute. I suspect that we will reconvene soon and start brainstorming. If you wish to attend, by all means please feel free.

We're going to have to start contacting people about the new institute, get some ideas for research projects and begin some fundraising to pay for this research to begin. Sharing your ideas is welcome and encouraged.

Did you see this?
Alberta oil to China. Sweetness.

Mike, re the SI, who will be running it? And what are their credentials? One of the things the movement is sadly lacking is credibility. (Well, that and a charismatic leader, but we'll save that for another day.)

Candace,

Your mention of credibility is at the heart of the matter. Without it, there will be no realistic change, only dreams.

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