From the equality of rights springs identity of our highest interests; you cannot subvert your neighbor's rights without striking a dangerous blow at your own. Carl Schurz

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Getting to the root of the problem

Far too many of us feel that by merely ridding ourselves of Harper and his cabal all our problems will magically be resolved.

While banishing Harper and the Conservatives from power is a worthwhile project our problems go much deeper than the evil he has unleashed on our nation.

Actually he has done us a favour of sorts in exposing the weaknesses in our electoral and parliamentary systems and institutions. None of that will change much upon his ouster. We will still have a first past the post electoral system and parliament will still be governed by conventions that require the government of the day to voluntarily submit to them.

Just as important we will still be governed by neo-liberals, continuing on the path of low taxes, austerity and privatisation. We will still be bound by ruinous trade deals that sell out our sovereignty to corporations.

Our youth will remain debt slaves with little prospect of ever enjoying the prosperity we once knew. The security state will remain intact.

I know many are so blinded by their hatred of Harper that any mention that many of our issues predate and transcend Harper causes them fits, some going so far as to accuse you of treason to the cause merely for mentioning what to them is an unwanted truth.

They can close their minds all they want but that won't change the fact that on the day after we will heave a huge sigh of relief at seeing the end of the Harper regime, but much of what ails us will remain and the battle will continue.


  1. I completely agree with your analysis here, Kev. The day we get rid of the Harper regime is really the day that another, even greater task awaits us. The scenario reminds me of how we felt in Ontario when the Harris years came to an end. Everyone gave Dalton McGuinty much more latitude in his neo-conservative policies than would normally have been accorded because, in contrast to Harris, he 'seemed' so much nicer.

    One hopes that the polarizing impact the Harper years have had on Canada will not result in the same effect federally. It would be nice to think that Harper has awakened in people an awareness of the fragility of our own democratic traditions, and that we will be much more vigilant with the next government. I don't know if that is a realistic aspiration, but hope springs eternal.

  2. I'm afraid we are doomed to a repeat om the national stage Lorne, even the mildest criticism of Trudeau is met with fury. I encountered the same with Obama during his first run.

    People are so desperate to see the end of Harper's rule that they are willing to overlook anything negative in Trudeau despite that he supports policies they have long opposed.

  3. So feckin' true. Each monster paves the way for a lesser monster whom everyone greets with a giant sigh of relief.

    That said, I've often remarked about Libs v Cons: The Libs are opportunists, but the Cons are ideologues. NDP can do something with opportunists. Not with ideologues.

    Most of all, we must get rid of FPTP. And that will happen only in a minority.

    1. Absolutely agree. I hope to never see another majority government ever which is why PR is my preferred option.

      I think back to the Pearson/Douglas coalition that gave us so much.