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Archive for the ‘Canadian Affairs’ Category

PM Stephen Harper & PM Benjamin Netanyahu
The only thing I agree with F.H. Buckley in his piece comparing Canadian Conservatives with American Conservatives is that “Canada shouldn’t look South for right-wing inspiration”. For obvious reasons I believe, but a big one being that a Canadian Conservative is probably to the left of a American Center-Left Liberal Democrat. Canadian Conservatives look more like FDR Progressives than Goldwater Conservatives.
To risk stating the obvious Canadian conservatism even looks different from American conservatism even in the classical conservative sense like Barry Goldwater or Bill Buckley, or today with Senator Rand Paul. So so-called religious conservatism or religious conservatives who look like theocrats to most of the rest of the world would never fly politically to a Canadian country that if anything is more secular than America and if anything believes in a bigger separation of church and state than Americans as a whole outside of our Bible Belt.
Canadian Conservatives to me at least represent the best form of a right-wing movement perhaps in the Western world. Because as much as Canada gets stereotyped as a big government socialist state it really isn’t. Their Federal Government and they do have a Federal system spends less of their country’s Gross Domestic Product than we do. And they tax business less than America does. And they do believe in fiscal responsibility and fiscal conservatism more than American so-called Conservatives. At least in the sense of not taxing and spending and running up big debts and deficits annually. And take a conservative fiscal look across their Federal budget including their defense budget more than American so-called Conservatives do.
There’s really nothing wrong with the Canadian right-wing at least as I see it as an American. They have true Conservatives up there who believe in good government. But part of good government is limited government since there is a limit to the good that government can do for people especially if people aren’t willing to do everything for themselves. And Canada should simply just focus on what works in Canada. As Americans hopefully will get back to what works in America.

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This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on Blogger

Perfect example of how the Canadian Senate is different from the American Senate. In America the Chairman of the National Party Democratic or Republican Party can’t order their party members to do anything. And neither can the President of the United States and even if we had an official leader of the opposition, which we don’t and I wish we did, that person wouldn’t be able to order their members of the Senate or House of Representatives to do anything. Especially kicking members out of their caucus. Because we have checks and balances and different branches of government.

In the Federal Government of Canada the official party leaders basically have complete control over their own parties. And can even make decisions about who can stay and who can go even in political bodies they aren’t members of. The Leader of the Opposition in Canada is a member House of Commons and not the Senate. In the United States Congress only the party leaders in both chambers can decide who can and cannot be members of their caucus. And they probably need majority support of their caucus to do so.

I’m not a Canadian, but an American of course and it seems to me Canada should make a decision about their Senate. Which right now is technically their upper chamber in their Parliament. And that is to either have a real Senate with real authority only accountable to their constituents and not the Prime Minster or Leader of the Opposition, or get rid of the Senate. And have a unicameral Parliament or just call it the House of Commons. Because their Senate is a joke. And this story with Leader Trudeau is a pretty good example of that.
Justin Trudeau

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This is what statism from the Far-Left looks like at its worst. And I say this is coming from the Far-Left, because Quebec is an overwhelmingly socialist province. Statism in Canada at least to this extent with government telling people what they can and can’t wear in public. With what I at least would call Fundamentalist Atheism. Which is not only anti-religion, but intolerant of religion. And doesn’t believe individuals should be able to make these decisions for themselves.

And this feeling comes from the Far-Left generally. And had this been a story about Mississippi, an overwhelmingly fundamentalist Christian state in America, perhaps the capital of the Christian-Right in America, I would’ve called this statism from the Far-Right. Of people who tend to be intolerant of non-Christian religions. With Islam being a big target of there’s. But what is going on in Quebec is clearly statism from the Far-Left. And shouldn’t be tolerated, or any type of religious bigotry coming from government.

Canada is obviously different from America. With their own national identity, culture, way of doing things, Constitution and just about everything else. And they’re a bit left of Americans typically to begin with. But Quebec is even further left than Canada as a whole and probably the most socialist of any province in Canada. So they need to figure out these issues for themselves in their own country. Based on their values and Constitution. But this would clearly be unacceptable and unconstitutional in America and thrown out.
Quebec

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Debating Society

Debating Society

The real problem with the Senate.

This might sound strange as an American commenting on Canadian affairs but Canadians do that all the time when it comes to American news. Like our healthcare-system or foreign-policy to use as examples or why our taxes are so low, perhaps they are jealous who knows. But as an American whose familiar with both Canadian and British news because we get a lot of each others news just because. Of the nature of the relationships and histories of these three countries and someone who loves. Politics generally and not just American-politics. I can’t help but want to weigh in on the issue of what Canada should do with its Federal Senate. Especially since they can’t seem to stay out our business when it comes to how we elect our president or the fact that we have a president. Or a real bicameral Congress that includes a real Senate where the Senate is a real upper chamber. Accountable to the people they represent rather than the chief executive in our case the president. But if you over to Europe not including Britain you’ll see other countries there that have real Senates and. Where the Senate is the real upper chamber in Parliament like in France or Italy or Germany to use as examples. So it’s not as if Canada would be copying America nor should they copy anyone but have. a bicameral Parliament that’s a real bicameral Parliament and not just that on paper.

I’m not talking about weakening the Canadian House of Commons which is supposed to be the lower chamber of Parliament in Canada. Anyway or taking the power to elect the prime minster out of the House of Commons. I’m simply talking about reforming the Senate in Canada and making it a real Senate with real authority and the real upper chamber in Parliament. And the only ways I would make it like U.S Congress with our House of Representatives and Senate. Is simply change how laws are passed in Parliament where both chambers would have to agree to the same law. Before Parliament could pass one which is how its done in Congress and where both chambers would have the authority. And responsibility to conduct oversight over the executive in Canada or what we call the administration or executive branch. And give the Senate the right to consent or not consent over executive appointments from the prime minister. To establish real checks and balances in Canada between the executive and Parliament. And I would give the House of Commons first crack at all legislation introduced by the prime minister. But whatever legislation that they pass then the Senate would get a crack at it do with it as they please. And if the pass a bill then the two chambers could come together to write the final bill that’s passed out of Parliament.

The last change I would make to the Senate in Canada is to Democratize it. Similar to how Americans elect their Senators where each state gets the same amount of Senators. And they are elected and get to run for reelection and have to win reelection to stay in office as a Senator. Canadians would get to do the same thing with each province getting the same amount of Senators who would. Have and you would have to be a resident of that province to run for Senate for that province. And then get elected to serve in the Federal Senate in Ottawa and have to get reelected to keep your. Seat and continue to serve in the upper chamber of Parliament in the Federal Government. I’m not talking about weakening the House of Commons in Canada but having it serve as the lower chamber of. Parliament which its suppose to be anyway and if anything would now have more power with first crack at all legislation. Introduced by the Prime Minister but I would empower the Senate and Democratize it.

The debate in Canada right now about its Senate seems to be about whether to keep it or not. And if you keep it how to reform it because no one seems to like the current setup of the Senate there. But that’s not a real debate since it would take a constitutional amendment to the Canadian constitution to abolish the Senate. Same thing in America which will probably never happen here either so then the real question is how to reform the Senate in Canada. And since Canada is a Democracy it seems to me the best way would be to Democratize it and give it real power.

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Prime Minister of Canada

Prime Minister of Canada

Trudeau's White Paper – YouTube.

I guess since for the last sixty years or longer Canada has been looking for it’s own identity that distinguishes it from America and Britain. That represents both Britain and France ethnically in the country as well as other European peoples and people from parts of the world. One reason for that is that share a three thousand mile border with the most powerful country in the world in the. United States and that’s exactly what I believe Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau was doing back in 1978 by. Giving Canada a real Federal constitution that they can call their own that makes them different from America and Britain. Thats looks Canadian and represents Canada and what the Federal Government’s relationship with the Canadian provinces is. And how much power both have and how much freedom the Canadian people have and so fourth and a big part of that had to do with the. Federal Senate that it isn’t very Democratic and doesn’t have much authority even though it’s suppose to be. The upper chamber in the Federal Parliament in Canada.

What makes Canada different from America and Europe is that they are politically different then both countries. They share more of the Social-Democratic values and policies that are common in Europe but also believe in Federalism. And have a healthy skepticism for centralize-power and I’m not Canadian but I believe that’s what they should build off of in creating their own. Federal constitution in a country that’s a real Social-Democracy but not big fans of centralize-power that. Also have a real Bicameral Parliament and make the Senate there a real upper-chamber in Parliament that’s Democratic and has real power. Like an upper-chamber in a legislature should have where Senators are elected by the people, meaning all of them and represent the provinces. But where the House of Commons represents the people similar to America but a big difference being that. The House of Commons woud still elect the executive.

I believe a Federalist Social-Democracy could work in Canada where they are a Social-Democracy. But where the provinces have a lot of authority if not most of it with the Federal Government serves as. Regulator of these public-programs instead of Ottawa trying to manage everything and run the entire country. This system would work there and perhaps a name for the country besides Canada that gives the country it’s own identity. Perhaps the United Federation of Canada to use as an example that makes Canada unique in a positive sense from it’s allies and competitors.

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Leader Justin Trudeau

Leader Justin Trudeau


This post was originally posted at FRS Daily Times

It seems to me at least as a Liberal American that if a political-party is going to call itself the Liberal Party, then it should be a Liberal Party and not try to occupy the center and focus on purely centrist positions. That if you want to be a Centrist Party, then that’s what you should call yourself or the Independence Party. Perhaps Mushy Middle Party, or the Radically Moderate Party. But if you are going to call yourself the Liberal Party, then that’s exactly what you should be. Otherwise you are falsely representing and advertising yourself.

We all know where the Conservative Party in Canada is, they are a Conservative Party that’s exactly what they are representing, the center-right in Canada. And we know where the New Democratic Party is, the lets call it the far-left party in Canada. Even by Canadian standards they are on the far-left and are a social democratic Party that probably represents Quebec or Scandinavia better than Canada as a whole. Canada is not as socialist as people tend to think and actually has a smaller Federal Government as percentage of gross national product than America.

I’m not an expert on Canadian politics obviously being a life-long American whose never lived in Canada. But I do follow Canadian politics and a lot of their elections going back to the late 1990s. Thanks to C-Span and the internet and what I get about the Liberal Party in Canada is that the reason why they are out of power is because Canadians and perhaps even Liberals themselves up there do not seem to know what the Liberal Party stands for anymore.

What it means to be a Liberal? That if you are trying to just occupy the center and not look like Social Democrats, you are not only giving away the center-left in Canada, because you are not even trying to occupy what you claim to be which are Liberals, but you are also giving away the center because people don’t know what you are. You say you are Liberals, but you are trying to tell Canadians you are Centrists instead, so what are you.

All I’m saying is that if you are going to be the Liberal Party, then that’s exactly what you should be and that’s what your platform should look like. “We are the Liberal Party in Canada that represents the center-left. We are not Social Democrats on the far-left and not trying to be the New Democratic Party. But we are Liberal Democrats that believe in freedom and that its the number job of government to protect freedom for those who have it and still deserve it. And expand freedom for people who do not have it, but deserve and need it”.

It’s not the job of government to take care of people with a superstate. But to protect their freedom and expand freedom with opportunity for people who need and deserve it. Thats what a Liberal platform would look like, that’s what the vision would be. And if Justin Trudeau are actually Liberals, than that is what they would be pushing. And perhaps even get support from the growing libertarian movement in Canada who are not Social Democrats or Conservatives either.
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Appointments will fuel backlash against Senate, parties say.

Canada is probably the closest democracy to America as far as its freedom. In a lot of ways its a Liberal Democracy just like America but if anything has more freedom on Social Issues. Like on Gay Marriage, Prostitution, Marijuana, they even allow Law Biding people to own guns. And don’t have a National Gun Registry like America. But they have much more socialist Economic Policy whether the Liberal or Conservative Party is in charged. With a much broader Welfare State then America. And even though they have a Federal System unlike Britain. They are a lot more centralized then America. But they are probably our closest ally in the World, where the cultures and people are pretty similar. Canada in my opinion does a lot of things well but in one area they are lacking even though they have a Bi Cameral Federal Parliament. With the House of Commons and Senate, their Senate unlike America’s is a joke. No more important then the UK House of Lords. Even though on paper the Canadian Senate is the Upper Chamber in Parliament like America. Unlike the US Senate it doesn’t act as one with very little if any power. Whereas in Australia the Senate there is the Upper Chamber in Parliament on paper and in practice. And where the Prime Minister has to appear in both Chambers weekly when Parliament is in session. Unlike in the Canadian Parliament where Prime Minster only has to appear in the House where Prime Minster Questions is conducted. Where Senators don’t appear.

Currently the Prime Minister appoints at least some of the Senators as well as people inheriting that position. Canada is much better then this, they are not an Authoritarian State or a Monarchy. They should modernize their Senate and have a true Bi Cameral Parliament where each Province gets and equal number of Senators and where the each territory gets one each. And let the Canadian People decide who their Representatives in Parliament are in both Chambers. And let the Senate be an equal player in Parliament or the Upper Chamber. Democracy works best when the people are in charge.

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