A political party has one purpose. It is a service organization. And it serves the public. Everything else is secondary. A political party is focused on its relationship with the voter, supporting the public servants be they a MLA or member, and creating opportunities for leadership. In this a party needs to be two things: [...]
After the Quebec Conference, at a gala dinner hosted by George-Etienne Cartier, Canada’s Fathers of Confederation held a toast; it was offered as encouragement to face the difficulties still before them in forming a nation, but the verse stands today as encouragement for us to face the difficulties in now strengthening it.
Then let us be firm and united One country, one flag for us all; United, our strength will be freedom Divided, we each of us fall.*
*From Richard Gwyn’s John A: The Man Who Made Us
The White Whale swam before him as the monomaniac incarnation of all those malicious agencies which some deep men feel eating in them, till they are left living on with half a heart and half a lung. – Herman Melville, Moby Dick
Perhaps if the revenge-obsessed Captain Ahab had access to Canada’s public health care system Moby Dick would have had a happier ending, but as Tommy Douglas was still decades away from being born, there was little solace for the one legged seafarer. Despite their temporal difference though, not to mention their fictional divide, Ahab’s pursuit of the White
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Public Health Care Is Our White Whale
Why were you outraged over Russia locking up Pussy Riot but ambivalent over America bringing its full weight down on open access activist Aaron Swartz? Simple, because hating a Russian government is easier than improving your own.
When Russian punk band Pussy Riot received 2 years for “hooliganism motivated by religious hatred” there were weeks of press coverage, mass protests, world outrage, and calls, most notably by US President Barack Obama, denouncing Russia’s actions as “disproportionate”.
Yet when Reddit co-creator Aaron Swartz was facing 35 years in an American prison for merely making publicly-funded research public, there were few
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: How The US Used Pussy Riot And You Liked It
This is quite shocking.
This statement might appear to be commonsense, but it is a radical divergence from the standard view that terrorism against the US government is never justified or deserved.
In essence this is a warning from a four-star US General to his government about the use of drones, saying that if America uses them carelessly then it has no right to be outraged over extremist retaliation.
“Washington is broken.” – Barack Obama
Looking at the Canadian Senate in isolation might motivate many to question it, but compared to the American Senate, Canadians should be proud of their upper chamber.
Besides the fact that googling “Ottawa is broken” brings zero related results, the American Senate is so dysfunctional quite a few of its members, like former Senators Olivia Snowe and Evan Bayh, have actually quit, citing that the American institution is just too broken.
From the McCarthy hearings in the 1950s to bringing the world’s largest economy to the brink of collapse in the fiscal crisis
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Why Canada Needs An Elected Senate Just Like America’s
Thanks to 3D printing, a government ban on guns soon will be as enforceable as a government ban on pictures of guns.
That is because, not in the too distant future, printing objects will be as easy as printing pictures, and if the government can’t prevent anyone from printing pictures of guns, it surely won’t be able to prevent people from printing actual ones.
3D printing is a rapidly advancing and growing industry with a similarly accelerating amount of personal users or “fabbers” as (even though it’s hard to imagine) they like to be called. For those unfamiliar with the
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Why Banning Guns Is Pointless, Or Soon Will Be
One month after the Sandy Hook shootings, with fears of an assault weapons ban, not only are sales for assault rifles at record highs, but all gun sales are up, ammunition sales are up, and even firearm stocks are up.
The irony of all this is that all these people who are now buying up every gun are the same people who claim the government can’t create jobs.
Because Stephen Harper was a self-described “radical right-wing ideologue”, he was the only one who could make the conservatives more Liberal.
Because Barack Obama was so anti-war, he was the only one who could make the Democrats more pro-war than Republicans.
In both cases it was each man’s close association to a particular cause that gave him the credibility and therefore the power to fundamentally change it.
And it is because Justin Trudeau is perhaps the most identifiable Liberal that he, and he alone can make the party more conservative, and, as they aren’t mutually exclusive, more progressive. Trudeau has
Many scoff at the conservative analogy that the American government should manage its finances like a household, but little do they realize the idea doesn’t strengthen conservativism, it weakens it.
After a fiscal cliff deal that only increased taxes, many right-leaning politicians are preparing for a fight in order to cut spending. To bring the budget debate of Washington to the kitchen table of American families, many fiscal conservatives are comparing government finances to those of a household, progressives should not just let them, but they should do the exact same thing.
Democrats shouldn’t fight this nation-as-a-household analogy, they should
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Your Country’s Finances Are Exactly Like Yours
Justin Trudeau will become the next Liberal Leader and the party will actually air an advertisement or two as part of a determined strategy to define him and the party before the Conservatives do. Something the Liberals failed to do with Dion and Ignatieff.
Gerard Kennedy will become the next Liberal Leader in Ontario; working with the NDP, there will be no provincial election in 2013.
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford will lose re-election.
Canada’s economy will only grow by 1.7%, much lower than the 2% the federal government currently projects for 2013 (The IMF and CIBC
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: 2013 Predictions
Liberals had their leader defined by their opposition in 2006 and 2009. Republicans suffered the same fate in 2012 and Democrats are already attempting to define likely candidate Senator Marco Rubio (video below). Liberals like to think they share a f… . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Republicans Are Like Liberals
The Queen is unelected by Canadians, is ultimately responsible for Canada’s well-being, and exerts no influence over Canadian affairs. The President of the United States is unelected by Canadians, has no responsibility for Canada’s well-being, and exer… . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: America, Canada’s Monarchy
If your vote is meaningless because it’s only one out of 140 million cast, what does that say about you, the importance of your one life on a planet with 7 billion others? Not to mention the short span of your years compared to the billions that came before it and the billions of years that will follow it.
The fact is your vote matters just as much as you do. That even though you, yourself are smaller than a grain of sand in the infinite landscape of time and space, the things you do, the things you say, the
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Why Your Vote Means Something
It is hard to imagine how much Obama has let the American people down from his lofty rhetoric in 2008 and how little hope and change he has actually delivered. This of course is not because Obama failed to uphold these particular promises, though it’s readily admitted he’s failed to uphold others; there is resentment because there is something significantly wrong with America.
When any society believes hope and change are some tangible commodity, some identifiable end or some goal that once attained can be placed upon an award shelf to collect dust, that society seriously misunderstands what hope and
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: There Is No End For Hope & Change
America is a politically divided country, racial groups have picked sides and aren’t making things any better.
On January 1st the country is set to suffer a 5% cut to its economic output mostly as a result of the fiscal cliff that has loomed ever since Democrats and Republicans failed to agree on a plan to reduce the ever-growing deficit.
The partisanship that has plagued Washington and created this crisis is related to the partisanship that plagues America which itself has motivated different races to become politically aligned, perhaps only dangerously so.
This election the Democratic candidate President Barack Obama
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Racial Divide Ruining America
Just as you need a brain and a heart, a country needs voters who know the issues and voters that don’t.
As the election for the American President looms, after months, if not years of campaigning, countless ads, two debates so far (not counting the twenty or so for Mitt Romney), and four years of getting to know Barack Obama, many are right to wonder how there can still be undecided voters.
If that group isn’t broadly criticized, the not so mutually exclusive segment of uninformed voters is. Informed citizens may frown upon these other members of their electorate, but
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: We Need Uninformed Voters As Much As We Need Informed Ones
China has a right to pollute like the West did when it industrialized, but China must become just as ignorant.
In defending China’s emisssions, the highest in the world and only growing, the country often claims it has a right to pollute just as America and Europe did when those regions built their modern industrial economies. But the Red Dragon neglects the fact that while the West pumped out smog, blackened England, destroyed lakes, and ripped the Ozone, it was ignorant of the effects of human-caused climate change.
So it only seems fair that if China does want to
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: China’s 21st Century Pollution With The West’s 20th Century Ignorance
Though it is unclear whether Obamacare will improve the health of Americans, the recent US Supreme Court ruling will at least improve the health of American institutions.
America is a sick country, not only because of the millions of people uninsured and vulnerable to the cost of already one of the most expensive health care systems, but because of the partisanship that divides its government and its people.
All three branches of government have been suffering from polarization, a disease where the American body politic is made lethargic as resources are diverted from acting externally for the good of the
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: The US Supreme Court & The Health of America
Facing an unprecedented environmental crisis a world summit like no other was called.
“We have to do something, we can’t let our environment just die.” A member of the Dirt delegation said with the driest of throats.
Other representatives of the world’s nature lined the large circular table. Tree’s foreign minister sat there with his branches crossed, the President of the Democratic Republic of Rock sat beside him stone-faced and unmoved.
“I don’t think we need to do anything, this isn’t elemental-made, it’s not like we are the ones ruining the environment anyway. This is just the natural course
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Nature’s Environment Is Man
Canada is the maple leaf, the United States of America is the stars, one is modest and pragmatic, the other is idealized and constant. National symbols are chosen to represent countries, but somehow countries cannot help but represent their national symbols.
For the religious and industrious United States of America there is no better symbol than the heavenly yet geometric stars and stripes. The inherent, inalienable rights of man upon which that country was founded seek to be as lofty, as constant and as idealized as both the astronomical objects in the sky and the mathematical principles that form their
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Symbolizing The Maple Leaf
The Road We’ve Traveled, isn’t just a new video released by the campaign to re-elect President Barack Obama, it’s a display of historic influence.
The United States may have the largest army in the world, it may have the most nuclear weapons, but soldiers and bombs don’t win over hearts and minds. In the world today, as its always been, people are won based on the incitement of feeling with the association of positive ideas. Because of this, books opposing various governments and their ideologies have been burned while books supporting them have been written, the same can be said
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: The Road We’ve Traveled
When you concentrate the world’s politics in one superpower, extreme polarization is inevitable. The vitriolic partisanship that has only reached record levels in the United States has increased because the country’s influence has.
George Washington hated political parties, he warned they could destroy the nation. In his farewell address in 1796 Washington warned that “They serve to organize faction, to give it an artificial and extraordinary force; to put, in the place of the delegated will of the nation the will of a party.” Adding a party “agitates the community with ill-founded jealousies and false alarms, kindles the animosity
. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Superpowers Have Super-partisanship