This item was published as a newspaper column last September, but didn’t get posted to my blog. Might still be of interest.
“OK, smartypants”, she says “You talk a lot about politics, but your remarks are all over the political map. So what is your position on this election?” I answer “You would be bored stiff if I tried to explain”. “Try me”, she says.
OK, here goes. First, some sermonizing. I only have black socks in my drawer; I figure this saves me the stress of one decision per day, probably adding at least a week to my life. Some folks pick their sports team in the same way, “my daddy was a Leafs fan, and my grand-daddy was a Leafs fan, and by golly I am a Leafs fan.” Unfortunately some people also pick a Political Party in the same mindless way.
The candidates are mostly decent folks who think they have something to offer, and want to serve their country. They give up a big chunk of their lives to take a stand, and deserve our attention. Those who don’t vote or those who vote mindlessly, like me picking out socks, without listening to the candidates or trying to understand them, are actually insulting these dedicated people, as well as failing in their duty as citizens. OK, now about me.
I am a Sir Wilfred Laurier Liberal. That means favouring individual freedom, small business, private property, and restraining government/nobility’s ability to order us around.
I am a Sir John A MacDonald Conservative. That means social order, strong families and church.
I am a John Diefenbaker Conservative, with a vision for building a prosperous country in this left-over bit of the world.
I am a CCF and Reform Populist. That is, I believe in ‘the common sense of the common people’, and that it is government’s role to respect that common sense, not try to lead us in some idealized direction; least of all one created by hippies in the sixties.
All three national parties bear only a passing resemblance to these honourable and honest roots. If any of them are to have a hope of being elected, they must pander to what somebody christened the ‘media party’; they must support ‘progress’, they must be ‘politically correct’, which flies in the face of all these roots. ‘Progress’ has taken away our individual freedom along with our right to property in favour of government owns and regulates all. Social order, family and church have been sacrificed to a new slate of privileges based on race or belief or behaviour. Any vision of building our country has been sacrificed to ‘environmental’ concerns and morphed into emptying the countryside into a few big cities. Far from the common sense of the common people, we have an elite of bureaucracy, academia and media which lectures and even punishes any who question the new orthodoxy.
So if the party distinctions are meaningless and all parties must follow the ‘media party’ orthodoxy or be punished, how should one vote? Good question. How will I vote? Well, I will look at the personal record of the individuals running in our riding, their honesty, or lack thereof, their achievements, their abilities, their dedication, and my judgement as to what they can do for this riding, and go from there. Democracy should be about people picking their representatives to represent them in government, not a TV-fueled lying contest between would-be tyrants.
Hope that helps. Do your duty, listen to the candidates, then get out and vote.
Probably was bad advice, as it ignores the fact of life in Canada, we have lost our democracy, our MP’s are only pawns in a popularity contest of the leaders. Oh, well