Interim Liberal Leader Bob Rae is worried that if any more members are added to Canada’s parliament and they will be spilling out onto the front lawns. He is also worried about 30 additional MP’s costing us another $25 million a year. Better we should worry about the quality of people we send there. If we choose more like we are sending today, a rubber room might be the most practical answer.
In successive Canadian parliaments, constantly fixed with band-aids since Confederation, myopic governments continue to ignore the desperate need to review how this country is governed. The criminal waste, the frustrations, the rising divisions, the ill will and the injustices of the present form of government must be addressed. There are just too many fixes that are too long overdue.
The Senate of Canada makes a mockery of democracy. The monarchy in Canada is a failed fairy tale. People only think there is impartiality in Supreme Court appointments. Your civil rights are protected in Canada—if you can afford a lawyer. We continue to mistreat our aboriginal peoples. We awkwardly try to ape the American political system with a British form of government.
And every ten years, after a census, we are told more lies about representation by population. The entire population of Prince Edward Island is the same as the Barrie electoral district in Ontario. PEI’s population of 135,000 is represented by four Members of Parliament. That makes PEI voters about fives times better represented than the citizens of Barrie, Ontario.
Now Prime Minister Harper has proposed that the electoral districts in Ontario be redistributed and Ontario get 15 more members of parliament. That is still not representation by population but is the best he can do until we fix the way this country is run. He will also allocate more seats to Alberta and British Columbia to reflect but not completely compensate for the growth of population in those provinces.
But Mr. Harper is still giving three new seats to Quebec so that Quebecers will not be too mad about their lessening lock on Canada’s governance. It is the province’s own discrimination in immigration and its draconian language laws that discourage people from coming to the province. It is a part of the country that has much to offer all of us but the notables continue to try to enforce a quasi separation for their own ends.
The only way we could ever get a representation by population in parliament, the way it is presently being done, is to have about 700 new members. With over a thousand members, the walls would really have to be made of rubber—and we would need to be able to lock all the doors from the outside!
Copyright 2011 © Peter Lowry
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