Essential Knowledge Needed to Grow a Democracy part 11
The Parent and the child
We as adults remember being children and how disheartening it felt being told by a parent that we can’t do something. Perhaps you had a good parent that gave good council, guiding you through the pains of growing up. Or, on the other hand, you may have had a controlling parent that thought that children should be seen and not heard. A parent like that can really make you feel worthless. Thinking back you might remember turning a teen and dying to do something that seemed to be only the domain of adults – like driving, or going to a dance late at night. Wanting to have the rights of an adult was just part of the process of growing up.
We, the people have a child to parent relationship with our Canadian governments….except, most people don’t know it, and it seems that a lot of the kids don’t seem to care if they do get to grow up.
The British Parliamentary System of government was created hundreds of years ago, and the basic structure has changed very little. Sure women and aboriginals have the vote today, but the same top down, no need to consult the kids attitude still prevails . The pattern was set, King John was forced to sign the Magna Carta by junior royalty, then with the industrial revolution the vote went to land holders, and then to the people as a whole, but, governing always has been a wealthy man’s game. The principles of the British Parliamentary System were born in a time of wide spread illiteracy and ignorance, and so the idea of a representative (usually a nobleman or wealthy man) going to government to do the thinking for the uneducated was born. Elitists would manage society in a quasi-democratic way. By virtue of Christian principles, rights and freedoms were extended to the people, but power would stay in the hands of the privileged. After all, there were some benefits, to the wealthy, to keep some of the people poor.
Only, no one, and apparently not even Canadians have noticed that times have changed. When democracy was born an overwhelming number of people lived on little plots of land in a subsistence way of life. There were few books. No electricity. No telephones, cars, radios, tv’s, jets computers, satellites, no man on the moon etc, etc. etc. Other than the fact that people have to survive and people feel, their world was nothing like ours is today. Government, and representation should look somewhat like the people they represent. We can be informed by listening to all sorts of media. I can get on the internet and find out almost anything I want. We are educated to the Nth degree… and yet our so-called representatives, the people that we pay to represent us do not even consult with the people that they represent. They, like the government representatives hundreds of years ago, go to Parliament and do your thinking for you.
Why don’t Canadians want to grow up and have the rights of having a say in how we are governed? Why don’t we want a say on how our government spends our money, or public policy? Do we not know there real and tangible benefits of Canadians maturing beyond the micro management of our own lives, and as perhaps parents?
I knew from years ago that the Swiss economy was one of the strongest in Europe, so I went onto the internet to see how the Swiss economy was doing today. For those who don’t know, the Swiss have been living under a system of Direct Democracy since 1848. There the people are sovereign, meaning that the people are the power. They make all of the ultimate decisions. In Switzerland the people have approximately 4 referendums a year for the people to decide everything from the budget to anything that effect the nature of their nation.
But this decision making that the Swiss make benefits the people of Switzerland far beyond the maturity in public thinking. As seen through the Swiss example (information found at wikipedia).
“In 2010, Switzerland had the highest wealth per adult of any country in the world. Switzerland also has one of the world’s largest account balances as a percentage of GDP, only placing behind a few oil producing countries. Zurich and Geneva have respectively been ranked as the cities with the second and third highest quality of life in the world. In 2010 the World Economic Forum ranked Switzerland as the most competitive country in the world, while ranked by the European Union as Europe’s by far most innovative country.
Other benefits that accrue from a maturity of the citizenry is self-determination and stability of the political system”.
There are other benefits that the Swiss have accrued due to their way of life. They have a very low unemployment rate, and they are very self-reliant as a people. And although they have 4 language groups in the country they are a very stable country. Canada can learn from the Swiss example.
Canada is a wonderful nation. The world marvels at how we live in peace and harmony with all the world’s populations amongst us. It was not policy that brought that near miracle about, it was the people of Canada. What we have created in our communities we can create in our nation, Anything we can dream, we can create, but it first takes a little growing up.
The lie about Canadians not being smart enough, or able enough to make the decisions of governance is a fraud. It always was a lie from politicians that wanted to keep our power to themselves.