Tag Archives: Democracy

A Letter to Mr. Harper – May 1, 2014

534173_481068328649549_2017651816_nDear Mr. Harper,

I haven’t written in a while, so I thought I’d drop you a line. I’ve become quite concerned about your behaviour as Prime Minister. Your country is having a breakdown, both democratically and with its Charter of Rights and Freedoms. You may want to go back to the books, take a peek at what your duties really are. And put away 1984, it’s not a playbook.

The People are not happy. They talk as if you’ve become an autocrat. Remember in your youth, when Canada represented peacekeepers and defenders of the environment? Back then, our international representations used diplomacy rather than bullying to reach agreements. We drafted peace accords and hosted environment-focused conferences. What happened? You’re party is acting like a bunch of drunken eighteen-year-olds do when the parents leave on holiday.

Some blame your Conservative party for curtsying to the petroleum execs’ needs more than to the citizens’. And, I’m sorry to say it, but you’ve got to turn this tar sands thing off. It’s embarrassing. It’s an inferior product that barely makes up for the costs of refining it, and it’s literally killing us. Did you know that a leader that purposely lets his own people die has a name that starts with a D?

I realize that your oil pals give you a nice little pocket-stuffer for giving them so much free access to the land. Who wouldn’t be grateful? But I think that you’ve given over just a bit too much? I mean, who invites the neighbours over to dig up and toxify their back yard? That doesn’t build a very strong relationship. So why not put that little project on hold and look for something else to occupy you and your economic buddies. We can survive without turning our prairies into a wasteland.

Apparently, the truth hurts. Why else take a swipe against science, muzzling them like your MPs and silencing them like a despot? Unlike you, I like science. It’s done the body good. These people do important things and try to save our asses from our own doings. And yet you’re trying to stop them? What gives? And who benefits?

You’re a deceiver, and it robo-looks like you’ve swindled your way into your seat as well. And now you’ve thrown in a Fair Elections Act to take a few more citizens out of the democratic equation. Didn’t I say put that book away?

I’m sorry to hear your whole ‘senate reform’ got shot down by the Supreme Court. It looks like your little ‘appointment’ app is on the fritz. But I imagine you’re already making loophole notes for the next omnibus budget. You show that Supreme Court who’s the boss! You know that’s a whole other load of bitumen you’ve been cramming down the democratic throat.

You need to take a break. From what, I’m not sure because it hasn’t been happening in front of the cameras like it used to. Did you learn this from the Chinese propaganda minister or from watching Rob Ford’s exploits?

Take some time off. We can find some temporary foreign worker to fill in. Just leave them some notes. The same with those ever-obedient Members of Parliament, I think we can get anyone to represent clapping monkey toys that echo whatever script you give them. I don’t know about you, Stevie, but I might have to call this whole friendship off. Sorry pal.

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On Protests: The Steps to Solidarity – May 4, 2014

578287_476713402344646_1199282742_nWhat can I say that hasn’t already been said? These pipelines are a danger to the Nature that we rely on in order to feed an economic system that provides us a miniscule proportion of it benefits. So are we here solely to display our unease, projecting dissatisfaction with the government’s favoring of the oil, gas, and economic sectors rather than improving our wellbeing? Where can we go from here that will increase our influence?

We’re here to raise awareness of the issue. I also believe that everyone here has a good understanding of the pipeline dilemma. If not, ask the person next to you. We come here, also, to deepen our understanding of how these projects impact our wellbeing. We come here for the solidarity, knowing our concerns are not only our own but of the entire community’s.

In those terms, we’re also here for the future. Personally, I want to ensure that an ecology remains for our children, grandchildren, and beyond to flourish in. We are living on the legacy of thousands of years of improvements, and it looks like all of those efforts are starting to go to waste. To end this ravaging, we must expand, reorganize, and become a community that we can be proud of.

Our hope lies in our action. By now we realize that our Conservative government will not be working towards the same goal. Just as likely, the media has drawn a line to how in-depth it can cover the damage from the petroleum industry. They do have advertisers and sponsors to appease, which is more their bread-and-butter than the bare truth.

So we are the bullhorn, we must spread the word because there is nobody else. We can give each other these great speeches, but we must now give them to those who won’t listen. This requires different tactics and most likely a huge voluntary organization to reinforce our actions. This is possible, and I have no doubt that our answers lie in our nest of ideas. We consist of a variety of backgrounds and professions, all with different perspectives of how the problem affects them. If we gather and discern the most sensible direction, we have a strategy for winning.

We must speak to our school systems, our business community, and our spiritual societies to energize the cause. We must provide our support to the other causes as they must support us. After all, while we’re fighting for the environment, the anti-Monsanto movement is fighting for food security, the Cannabis movement for fairer laws, and the anti-poverty movement for a better economy. Combined, that’s a lot of support to back our causes.

A larger group bears a greater impact, so we must expand. Social media is too easy to scan and pass over. The best impression comes from eye-to-eye contact, person-to-person. In a way, we must take on the door-to-door fervor of certain religious organizations and spread the word.

Our greatest strength is having the truth as our backing. Peering through the spin, the web of deception, we must look beyond what we’re shown. Continuous study and discussion are vital to keep a step ahead of the competitor. Only then can we distinguish their motives on which to plan an effective response. Again, government assistance is unlikely so we need massive support.

Our biggest obstacle lies within the economics of the situation. How can we take on that much power and that many lawyers? This is where we test our democratic might, requiring politicians with the resolve to fight for the rights of the citizens. We haven’t yet entered that arena, but an election is coming up in 2015, and we can change all that. We must put someone in power who will work with us toward our goals. On a grander scale, our fight isn’t just against the oil industry, it’s for our democracy.

So why are we here? To rally the troops, to recharge our will, to reclaim our land, and protect our wellbeing. And what can I ask of you? Spend some time talking to a stranger, or the person next to you, about what their greatest concern is. Start a community group, a lecture circuit, a contest. We’re a bright group of people, and we must empower our most creative ideas.

From here, we build up our numbers. We gather support. We create a game plan and decide on our counter-offensive. We must also provide the alternatives. Can we create an economy that will protect and sustain our communities, environment and well-being? This question is too big to cover now, but it should direct our questions to the next step.

We are here to influence our fellow citizens, as our representatives have become accustomed to the status quo, with very little vision of a future that reflects true prosperity. If our goal is clear, our facts unblemished, and our will immoveable, we will prevail.

Democracy Needs Tending More Than Once Every Four Years

activism04Society rests comfortably on its democracy, or level of it. Once it was a shield against tyranny, now a muffler of the people, blinders to the necessity of change. It is the liar and propagandist saying that we, as a society, are at our best and need do no more. While sensible in a bureaucratic world, it’s insane in an organic one. The law of Nature surpasses the law of man, and Nature’s laws are malleable and change with the circumstance; if not, the typical sentence is extinction.

Politics provides a good depiction of progress reversed. Its actions regurgitate past plans that failed to produce. Some might call this insanity, others as a loop of lacking imagination. I see it as a distraction, a cup-and-ball trick keeping us occupied while the accomplices steal our rights and highjack our land. Until I see evidence, democracy hardly exists.

Man-made laws take the tack of bureaucracy, hiding behind barricades of red tape making the whole system tough to change. The civilization that is superimposed over the organic world is warping and distorting like microwaved Saran wrap. The theory of straight-forward laws, when applied to this film, becomes unmanageable and doesn’t seem to fit the environment. When we fail to adjust, a greater-than-the sum-of-its-parts problem results and the repair is costly. It’s like having a plumber change your faucets and ending up with a flooded basement. This is our government.

So that’s where we stand as of now. Our economic, political and social institutions are failing to adhere to the surrounding reality, and the ‘power’ of the people has been ceded these deformed creations. The system meant to empower us against tyranny has taken a Bizarro twist and reversed the flow of power. Big business takes precedent, little guy takes the hit.

Is there a solution? Yes. Can we rely on the political and economic powers to make the change? No. The system works for them and they see nothing that needs changing. This requires a do-it-yourself approach with a ‘do-it-for-all’ mentality. This means your personal lives must be put aside for us to focus on the greater good. It is here that action overpowers the word, where the me is subsumed by the we, where the community overtakes the mind.

It’s true that we must be the change we seek. We affect the economy with where we choose to shop and what to buy. We affect community in how we treat both those who we know and those we don’t, accepting whatever differences there are. We affect politics by our level of participation, by the pressure we exert and the demands we make of our representatives.

What we take as ‘acceptable’ must be beneficial to the greater good. However, our tweets, posts and reactions indicate that we are far in the territory of ‘unacceptable.’ We must veer off in a new, unknown direction for our society to blossom. Democracy is more than a comfortable blanket, it is a vulnerable shield requiring upkeep by its citizens. It is the backbone of civilization and it needs your help now.