Now You Tell Me…

“There are things known and there are things unknown, and in between are the doors of perception” – Aldous Huxley

There are times you can only scratch your head and wonder if this is really life or am I just having a bad dream.  Reality and perception are like that.  The past three days have been a lesson in why I am becoming increasingly hermit in nature, it’s not just physical ability.  I’ve just spend three days finding reminders.

We had some great weather moments over the weekend which really encouraged me to get out and enjoy.  I had a few things that really needed doing so it was an all out type of weekend.  Things like re-stocking the pantry (personal space is always interesting in public gathering places), I had signed up to attend a public political event and I wanted to make sure I exercised my vote at an advanced poll.  So physically I was busy (kept count and did the chair transfer into or out of my car 48 times) so today I am big pharma’s happiest customer.  Today has been a four pill day…

My adventure at the advanced poll was another head scratcher and left me wondering just how little common sense there is out there.  My advanced poll was at a local elementary school.  It was a Sunday so when I arrived at the polling station there were lots of available parking but no identifiable disabled parking.  Since the poll seemed pretty steady (about 30 cars in the lot) I took an end spot just to make sure I wouldn’t be blocked in when I got back.  I do that to avoid the possibility of coming back to my car to find someone parked so close I can’t open my door wide enough to reload my chair.

walkingagainWhile I’m unloading my wheelchair in my usual fashion I noticed a women wearing an Elections BC lanyard around her neck.  She was watching me closely and I checked that off to someone watching to make sure I didn’t miss my chair as I jumped from my drivers seat.

As I wheeled towards the door to go into the poll she approached me to tell me about the “curb side” vote.  I had never heard of this but according to her one of the services now is to bring anyone with mobility issues all of the paperwork to their vehicle and cast your vote that way.  I’ve been voting for a lot of years and that is actually a good idea but it would be nice to make people aware of this.  I consider myself relatively well informed so I was surprised by this fortuitous piece of information.  At the same time, now you tell me.  You watched me unloading my chair so wouldn’t 20 seconds of common sense indicate you should say “I should make him aware”.  Oh well the fight goes on… Continue reading “Now You Tell Me…”

Dismantling Democracy

I wrote an introduction yesterday defining the difference, from my perspective, between politics and democracy.  Considering the current federal court case involving robo-calls and potential electoral fraud I would like to put more detail into democracy.  I find it difficult to understand how a governing party in a democracy like Canada can fight so hard to keep Canadians from discovering if there was electoral fraud created by misleading robo-calls.  In fact I find it difficult to understand why anyone would stand in the way of uncovering an answer to something as serious as electoral fraud.  So when a political party puts up continual barriers to keep an issue like this under wraps then I question their commitment to democracy.

Democracy is about process and when that process is manipulated as a way to dissuade the voting public then democracy is dying.  When a political party can take that democratic process and corrupt it by shutting down Parliament I have to question their commitment to democracy.  When a political party can bury far reaching legislative changes in 400+ pages of omnibus bills, not once but twice, then that is abuse of the democratic process which again leads me to question that party’s commitment to democracy.  When a political party can force their own appointments, public figures appointed to oversee various government operations, into the court system to obtain the information they require to perform their job then I question that party’s commitment to democracy.  And that is exactly what the Military Ombudsman and the Parliamentary Budget Officer have to do.

We have a political party who based their election platform on a transparent and open government then became the most secretive government in recent Canadian history.  Just look into the F-35 debacle.  We have a political party who ran an election based on strong fiscal management and then took a $13 billion surplus left over from their predecessors and run it up by 100’s of billions in deficit.  We have a government who insists on decreasing the size of government and then turns around to spend $1.2 billion on contractors/consultants, often referred to as the “shadow public service”.  And while this government goes on about fiscal restraint they use Canadian tax dollars to spend billions on advertising in what can only be described as a poorly disguised electioneering campaign.

This isn’t about politics; it is about the preservation of democracy.  And the most important players in the preservation of democracy are the electorate.  When less than 61% of eligible voters turn out to the polls then one has to question Canadian society’s commitment to democracy.  When a government can convince a country that they have been given a STRONG MANDATE FROM THE CANADIAN PUBLIC by continually repeating that statement but in fact received that mandate with less than 27% of eligible voters one has to question how informed the Canadian public even is.  To me 27% or 39% of those that did vote does not strong mandate make.  If 39% is a strong mark then I should have graduated on the honour roll.  And all of this is being done under the guise of democracy.

Canada it is time to wake up before we have no democracy left!

Just one man’s opinion.