As countries go, Canada is pretty small, population speaking. Geographically it is rather large with many natural resources which we have used as a major economic base.

Recently we have cause to worry about the Prime Minister’s Office, actually about Prime Minister Harper himself. He has a great financial backing from the “right”, those people we may consider to be of enlightened self-interest (what is good for me ought to be good enough for you).

It was bad enough the other week when the news informed the public that he had pulled Canada out of managing the software we had spent 30 years in developing to monitor and hopefully manage the current and growing water crisis throughout the world. Considering Canada has the largest amount of fresh water in the world, it was appropriate that we lead the way, cooperating globally as is our want. It was enough to want to, to feel the need to, run for office myself.

But now our very democratic process is under attack as Harper and his friends work, not to find economic solutions to the current crisis (anybody else out there not able to sell their home?), but to gut the opposition parties’ ability to effectively fund-raise. Admittedly, I do not know the details. However, let us look at what money actually does to keep democracy alive.

We initially think it is to “get out the vote” so one’s party can get as many seats as possible in parliament to speak out, pass bills and be on long detailed discussions in committees.  The core of all the busy-ness is to amass information, “intelligence” if you will, about the dynamics of a multiple score of issues. The lack of money limits your ability to effectively be the watch-dog on the ruling party. Lack of funds cripples efficiency and throws you out of the game…It ceases then to be a true democracy–you have a virtual one party system.

As I said, I haven’t read the details. It may even “sound” intelligent. But intent and effect of an action must needs be addressed in all situations or the whole process is tainted and we have an ungodly stench. Such an excellent example of the need for “sober second thought”!

Janet A. Wiebe

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