This fascinating and scary post just showed up on the FairVote Canada Facebook page:
The Conservative version of equality. Bigger picture below.
A couple of things to notice here and I’ll just leave it at that.
The Conservative party is worried about what the NDP and Green Party have to say about reforming our democracy. They are scared of PR and Elizabeth May and the NDP. They are scared that Canadians will finally say yes to staring to improve our unfair system.
Ridings, Not Voters
“Our country was founded on the equality of riding first and foremost.”
With the Throne Speech a one-day wonder, the Hair had nothing left to do but head for Brussels. The home of the European Union, Brussels today is more than a Mecca for tourists. It is here that the Hair has signed a tentative European trade treaty.
Nobody seems to care that the poor hairdresser had little time to rinse out a few intimate things before being hustled back onto that damn Airbus A310. The Hair needed a different set of lackey’s for the European trip than last week’s jaunt to Indonesia but where the Hair goes, so must go the (Read more…)
Here is a rough translation of Canadian political culture for Americans and others who may be unfamiliar with the political landscape of the second largest country on earth, the holder of the largest oil and mineral resources on earth, the pantry to the American empire, one of the richest nations on the planet, and a member of […]
When writing about the ‘Dump the Dummy’ campaign among Ontario Conservatives a couple days ago, we could hardly imagine the Tories having any choice. It gives you serious pause though when you find out who are the people leading the charge to get rid of Ontario Leader Timmy Hudak.
If you thought the people behind the move were responsible, level-headed red Tories who cared about the mess Hudak is making of things, you were wrong. It seems to be Tiny Tim’s fellow crazies over on the right wing of the party who are seeking vengeance. The most level headed is (Read more…)
Prime Minister Stephen Harper has been saved by the rain on the plain. With Calgary recovering from serious flood conditions, it is no time for a Conservative Convention. Stephen Harper must think that God is smiling on him. If he had his way, the convention would never happen. He does not need it. He probably thinks of it as a masquerade for people with dyslexia. Party goers will wear masks to allow them to have their say.
Regrettably, few will be able to say what they really wish to. It will be difficult to contain the frustration. Harper held (Read more…)
In the free market prices reflect demand, instead of choosing a few events to speak at arbitrarily, Justin Trudeau set a price to attend those gatherings that wanted him the most. This method of relying on market prices to benefit charities and businesses is a rather conservative idea.
So yes before he was Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau set a price to reflect the demand of those wanting to hear him speak, Stephen Harper for years did too, it just happened no one would pay to hear him talk.
Now the irony is that as Prime Minister we all pay when (Read more…)
If there was no John A. Macdonald, there would be no Canada.
Our most important founding father and first Prime Minister died 122 years ago today. Canadians of all political persuasions should take a moment and remember John A. Macdonald because they share so much in common with the man who made this country.
For Conservatives they owe much to Macdonald. Their majority government was elected because of moderation and stability, two values Macdonald owed his 19 years as Prime Minister to.
Jack Layton undeniably shared perhaps the most valuable trait with Macdonald, and that is being a man of (Read more…)
Out of Canada’s 33 Fathers of Confederation, only one went to university.1
It’s not that Nova Scotia’s Charles Tupper was the only intelligent one among them, other founders were businessmen, doctors, and lawyers, it’s that none of those jobs, and many others, did not require any post-secondary education.
The eduction jobs in the late 19th century did require was entirely made free shortly after confederation because provincial governments, though extremely small and limited, believed that their public schools should provide all the instruction necessary for citizens to obtain jobs in any sector, be it agriculture, engineering, manufacturing, commerce, medicine (Read more…)
If Justin Beiber was in the Canadian Senate it would be the most watched institution in all of government, and, undoubtedly, the most accountable.
For if the Biebs walked down the Ottawan red carpet into that similarly coloured chamber, his every action would be televised, sensationalized, and scrutinized. There wouldn’t be a Bieber vote that wouldn’t make a headline.
And not only would every single one of his receipts be analyzed by the Toronto Star and every other news agency, there would be over a hundred pictures documenting the young star in racking them up.
Though he would still be (Read more…)
Nobody really thinks Senator Mike Duffy received $90,000 in return for some political favour, but that public perception would most certainly change if he and every other Senator faced regular expensive election campaigns that depended on large contributions and even larger political favours.
An elected Senate requiring hundreds of thousands of dollars every four years for its members to run for office in much larger ridings would without a doubt only increase the likelihood of Senators exchanging votes for large financial contributions, both over and under the table.
In contrast, appointed Senators aren’t as vulnerable to bribes or shady deals.
90% of Americans support universal background checks for guns yet on Wednesday the American Senate struck down that legislation. That’s not very democratic, is it?
Those in Canada who fervently cling to the idea that voting will make our Senate democratic almost completely ignore the problems that come with it, such as the lobbyists and interest groups, like the National Rifle Association, that frequently override public opinion.
Contrasted with the American example, it is the Canadian appointed Senate that actually represents its citizens, because in not being elected the Senate recognizes the public does not empower it to drastically change (Read more…) defeat bills from the House of Commons.
And when the Senate does, in the rare times, reject bills from the elected house, it is to protect the interests of minorities and Canada’s regions, as it did in 1991 where it defeated a bill to re-criminalize abortion.
Considering the . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: The Undemocratic Elected Senate & The Democratic Appointed One
Justin Trudeau and the late Jack Layton have quite a few similarities, underestimation by Conservatives is yet another.
It wasn’t too long ago a certain inexperienced federal politician became leader of a third place political party. Though the son of a prominent politician1, in his early life he had not been immediately drawn to federal politics and instead chose a career of teaching. But with time this idealist realized that Canada deserved better than the “conservatives” in power and ran for his party’s leadership.2 He easily won it by a large margin on the first ballot… in (Read more…)
One sign that a country is in trouble is when the top court’s opinion is deemed controversial.
Canada doesn’t have to worry about that, not because its Supreme Court is so respected, but because of how little Canadians know about its rulings, in particular that our highest court believes abortion should be restricted.
It was only a few months ago when many MPs, of all stripes, attacked Conservative MP Stephen Woodworth‘s motion that sought to study when life begins, either pretending or genuinely not knowing their nation’s Supreme Court had asked for the government to do the very
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Canada’s Supreme Court Wants To Restrict Abortions
Canada has no real national monuments.
Mostly it’s because of the irony; towering statues and obelisks that promote pride in Canadian humbleness or simplicity would tend to miss the point. But that problem assumes Canadians would look upon a 100ft copper maple leaf with arrogance and not their common reverence for the natural world around them.
Some may say we don’t need any large showy structures, that national monuments are grandiose and idealistic. However there’s nothing more idealistic than believing Canadians are so above human nature that they have no need for symbols to inspire them.
We are known for
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: The Need of a Canadian National Monument
Scientists in Canada have come under attack and censorship under the federal Conservative government and Canadians want that to change. Science Uncensored is a new organization focused on ensuring that research funded by the government is freely available to Canadians and that the government stop censoring research results. In the past few years, research on the damage of salmon farming to the effects of climate change on Canada have been held back from public release due to alleged political pressure. It’s great to see people who want evidence-based debate on policy standing up against this sort of intervention in scientific
. . . → Read More: Things Are Good: Canadians Want Science to be Free
Canada’s economy is set to grow less than the government thought, but it’s not our Prime Minister’s fault.
True under Stephen Harper the World Bank has downgraded Canada from being the 4th most Business Friendly country in 2006 to 17th in 2013, but, as most Conservatives know, businesses have nothing to do with the Canadian economy.
Yes, Stephen Harper was Prime Minister when the World Economic Forum said Canada is becoming less competitive, dropping in global ranking from 9th place in 2009 to 14th place in 2013, but our government can’t be responsible for federal regulations,
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: How A Bad Economy Is Not Harper’s Fault
For the very same reason why so many Liberals want him to win, Justin Trudeau shouldn’t become Liberal Leader.
If 150,000 people only supported Justin Trudeau because of substance then there would be no argument against the 41 year-old MP for Papineau. A Trudeau only made popular by policy would present little risk in selecting him for leader. After all, the Liberal Party could survive, even if just barely, another loss from a leader who only represented the party’s policies. However policies aren’t why Justin Trudeau has so many supporters, and policies aren’t why he is a risk to the
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Why Justin Trudeau Shouldn’t Lead The Liberals
It’s not the low poll numbers or the ethnic voter outreach controversy, the real problem for the BC Liberals is that there are BC Liberals who want a problem.
Considering it was just 2011 when the federal Conservatives’ ethnic voter strategy made headlines it’s more than obvious that the current outrage against Christy Clark and her party is at least partially manufactured; by the NDP to score points, by the press to sell papers, and more importantly by BC Liberals still sour their candidate didn’t become leader.
The recent “scandal” for the BC Liberals centers around a leaked memo that
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: The Real Problem For BC Liberals
It would be a risky claim to suggest health care should be privatized while education, from preschool to post-secondary, should be fully publicly provided, but considering the importance of education, what’s really risky is that currently we have it the other way around.
To compare the importance of health care and education, ask yourself, would a nation that only had public health care be better off than one that only had public education?
Comparing such black and white societies may seem extreme, but it helps to clarify what is the more important public policy, health care or education. By the
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Why Health Care Should Be Privatized
To a calm and rational observer, the statement “viewing child pornography is victimless” is true. To an emotional person prone to sensationalism, for writing that first line, I should be reported to the RCMP.
On Wednesday night Tom Flanagan, a former adviser to Stephen Harper, spoke to a small crowd in Lethbridge, Alberta, where he was recorded making controversial statements regarding child pornography. Much of what he said was completely misunderstood, not helped by the CBC which has inaccurately reported the story.
The unedited video of the event begins with a speaker in the audience asking a series of pointed
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: The Defence Of Tom Flanagan
Canadians certainly are no Nero, but they do have at least one thing in common with the late Roman emperor.
In 64 AD it is said that while Rome burned its emperor Nero fiddled. That while his city suffered calamity he amused himself with music. Today Canadians are doing something similar.
Rome may not be burning, but with decreasing turnout, less party members, and more partisanship, Canada’s democracy is clearly in danger and instead of stopping to help, Canadians are too busy fiddling, with the Senate.
It can’t be anything but odd, that while Canada’s democracy is weakening on every
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: A More Democratic Senate Is Less So
Recently Saskatchewan MP Ralph Goodale wrote a post echoing a sentiment surprisingly popular among what’s left of the Liberal Party membership, and that is, this Conservative government is going to use its influence to gerrymander ridings to maximize support to guarantee future victories.
But Liberals shouldn’t be worried that the Conservatives will actually gerrymander, or for that matter that it will work, Liberals should be worried that this, fearing a contrived unrealistic threat, is how far they’ve fallen.
On Ralph Goodale’s website, the Liberal MP begins by describing the history of gerrymandering, it’s most notable case in
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Why Liberals Should Fear Gerrymandering
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. . . → Read More: OpenMedia.ca: site here, size 52 mb, 224kbit/s bitrate mp3