Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Pallins Pipeline 2

As I posted here previously the Alaska pipeline being built to transfer oil and gas south into the Gulf Coast refineries is being built by TransCanada Pipelines. Which originally was created by C.D. Howe and the Liberal Government and included the Alberta Socreds provincially created pipeline. Private capitalism which would not take a risk then took advantage of crown corporations created by public infrastructure funding. As taxpayers in Canada we have always funded big projects, like the railways and Air Canada, only to hand them over to private business interests when they were successful. Today you and I still pay for the privatization of our public infrastructure. Because that is the history of economic development in Canada, state capitalism for private benefit.

Ernest C. Manning was premier for 25 years. He was the wilful leader who walked the narrow path between powerful ideological opponents on the left and the right.
The socialists hordes in 1955 -- OK they were the Liberals and the CCF (today's NDP) - took 40 per cent of the popular vote in the election and wanted more government ownership of the oil industry.
Manning held the day with his 46 per cent of the vote -- and 37 of 61 seats.
The oilpatch capitalists, on the other extreme, tried to maximize their profits during the post Leduc oil boom that began in 1947.
Manning fought them off, too.
And Manning's government created a unique pipeline company in 1954 that was neither government owned, nor the profit-making tool of the international oil companies. It was called the Alberta Gas Trunk Line and is today part of TransCanada Pipeline.

In 1956, C.D. Howe forced the plan for the Trans-Canada Pipeline, a gas pipeline from Alberta to central Canada, through Parliament but paid heavily when the Liberal government lost the next election and he lost his seat.C.D. Howe retired from politics in 1957 at the age of 70.

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