Here’s a little tidbit I came across on Tuesday while waiting for the NDP government’s third-quarter fiscal update on Wednesday: Alberta has the highest unemployment rate in the country outside Atlantic Canada.Did you ever think you would see a day when you would say that about this province? That, except for the Atlantic provinces, which have chronically high unemployment, Alberta has the worst unemployment in the country.The national unemployment rate is 5.9 per cent. Ours is 6.8.British Columbia’s rate is 4.7 per cent. That’s the best in Canada. So it’s easy for them to hold up a pipeline that would create so many jobs here, because times are already good in B.C.Ontario, Saskatchewan and Manitoba all have jobless rates of 5.6 per cent.Alberta is even 1.4 percentage points worse than Quebec. I don’t ever recall there being a period in my lifetime when Alberta had a worse unemployment rate than Quebec.Our job creation is shameful. In December we shed 15,000 jobs, mostly full-time and mostly in the private sector. In January, we lost another 16,000.And it’s almost entirely the fault of the provincial NDP and federal Liberal governments. Their carbon taxes, environmental regulations, long delays in approving new projects and increased business and personal taxes have scared away tens of billions of dollars in investment (as well as the small businesses and new jobs that go with all that money).For a contrast, look at the oil states in the U.S. where there aren’t “green,” socialist governments putting up roadblocks at every step and squeezing out what little blood is left in the golden goose.North Dakota has an unemployment rate of 2.7 per cent, Oklahoma’s is 3.2 per cent, Utah’s 3.2 per cent and Texas is 3.7.On Wednesday, provincial Finance Minister Joe Ceci released his third-quarter fiscal update. The deficit for the current fiscal year (which ends on March 31) is expected to be almost $2 billion less than the NDP projected in their budget last spring. But that’s about where the “good” news ends.Put that deficit into context, though. Yes, at $6.9 billion, the 2018-19 deficit will be $1.9 billion lower than forecast. Yet it would still be the largest deficit in Alberta history were it not for the NDP’s first three deficits.Interestingly, in making his third-quarter announcement, Ceci said the economy might be a little tight in 2019, but will “bounce back to 2.9 per cent in 2020 and remain solid over the medium term.”What rubbish. So long as the NDP remain in office with their Climate Leadership Plan, their rapidly expanding public sector, their refusal to cut spending, their ballooning debt, higher taxes and anti-development “green” regulations, Alberta’s economy will never recover.On the same morning as Ceci released his budget update, the Conference Board of Canada revised Alberta’s growth projection from 2.0 per cent this year to just 1.3 per cent.At 1.3 per cent growth, Alberta will be DEAD LAST among provinces. The worst. Rock bottom.No wonder Ceci didn’t mention this year’s rate specifically.For months, Premier Rachel Notley and her ministers having been boasting that Alberta has had the highest growth rate in Canada for the past two years, that we are well on the way to recovery. Now that we have the worst growth (and could possibly dip back into recession) how are the New Democrats going to put a shine on that — especially because it is mostly the fault of their policies and their coziness with the Trudeau Liberals?Our NDP government is not just bad at economic and fiscal management, it’s dangerous and destructive.The sooner it is gone, the better.