While I planned to talk about ‘The Good & The Bad of 2022’, there truly is an “Ugly’ component that can’t be overlooked because of its influence on the outcome. 2022 has been a challenging year, full of complexities, surprises and most concerning times. As the days wound down to December 31, it seemed the tone might have just carried forward into 2023 if things were not talked about. For me personally, it truly does feel like we have lived through one of the most difficult times in our country.
I will let others give their opinions on the lack of meaningful Christmas messages from Canada’s leaders as we rang in 2023. The most successful TV series continues to be Sheridan’s Yellowstone that features old-fashioned freedom, independence and all ‘good things’ of years past. While the main characters emulate a family hoping to leave ‘good things’ behind for younger generations, the idea of a future world is full of concerns as they battle governments ever trying to disrupt that world which led me to the idea for this article. But let’s start with some of the ‘Good in 2022’. The Good: Alberta can easily claim they had the best economy in Canada.
Let’s be honest – regardless of the ‘denier claims’, that was due to our oil and gas industry which is needlessly and consistently under attack. Alberta experienced the largest growth in population in any year possibly compared to our last boom. Although yearly numbers were not available, the third quarter alone saw almost 20,000 newcomers to Calgary. While high-tech, warehousing and logistic industries also increased in that time, it was still our key industry that brought many of those services to Alberta
Our reasonable housing costs and welcoming lifestyle influenced people to arrive from all parts of Canada. Some were inspired by remote working options and truckers who can live anywhere chose Alberta as their home for a variety of reasons. Yearly numbers for the province will be revealing. The Bad: A lot of local capital left Alberta with no plans to return due to consistent concern over never-ending federal government policies, regulations and interference, radical environmentalist threats and influence on our fossil fuel industry, attacks on farming and our food industries, along with forestry.
The implementation of even higher carbon taxes and unabated spending has led to growing and unaffordable inflation. Banks and businesses signing on to ESG policies will only add to inflation and unaffordable living. The Ugly: I can’t avoid mentioning the attacks on our freedom by the implementation of the Emergency Act, the freezing of personal bank accounts, all of which led to a loss of worldwide reputation and a halt of meaningful foreign investment and local dollars leaving Canada. The constant threat of censorship by elected officials, and a sense of threat of new power grabs through mid-term elections as disruptors leaves us with a loss of confidence in our country as a place for our families and newcomers to thrive.
But to end on a somewhat positive note, now that we have established where the threats lie, it is up to us to step up and turns things around in 2023.