Sort through the statistics and the surprise is how consistently Ontario and Quebec now mimic the weak economic opportunities in the Maritimes instead of the bright economic opportunities available in the West. There's no great mystery as to why. Provinces with substantial private sector investment -- something the West has attracted with pro-entrepreneur policies and by simply saying "yes" to resource extraction in specific -- end up with enhanced employment opportunities, higher incomes and better prospects to enjoy a middle-class lifestyle.
The Alberta government is facing a deficit in the area of $4 billion. By now we have all heard the discussions regarding the recommended courses of action that the government should take to make sure that Alberta's finances get back into the black; reform Alberta's taxation system (although the budget saw no such reforms), cut government spending, and diversify Alberta's energy export markets.