OTTAWA (CP) - The issue of public versus private health care needs to be front and centre in the next federal election campaign, says Alberta Premier Ralph Klein.Ahem. There is one province in Confederation that is totally dependent on a non-renewable source of mineral wealth for it's finances. The extraction, refining, and use of oil causes pollution leading to early death for children and seniors, and climate change for the entire planet. The use of oil will almost certainly be banned before Mr. Klein has drawn his last breath.
Federal politicians appear unwilling to tackle the problems facing Canada's "unsustainable" public health-care system head-on, Klein told the Canadian Club, adding he fears they will try to avoid the issue altogether.
"It's easy . . . at the federal level to say pretty much anything you want about health care because the federal government is not actually responsible for delivering health services to the vast majority of Canadians," he said in a speech Monday.
"But at the provincial level, we are responsible. We have to talk about it. We have to try and fix it. We can neither wait for federal elections, nor can we shut up when they come along. We have to tell the truth."
Some federal Tories undoubtedly wish Klein would avoid the sensitive issue of Alberta's planned health-care reforms.
So please tell us, Mr. Klein, which system is unsustainable.