22 October 2008

Congrats to Harper & Co - I'll be a tool no more

Dana's post over at The Galloping Beaver touched me deeply.

It so expresses what I've been feeling since the results came in from the latest show produced by our federal political parties. You know the one, the $300 million production designed to fool Canadians into thinking they were participating in a democratic process.

Dana expressed the same sense of dismay I've been feeling and a profound disturbance that Canadians have allowed themselves to be so swayed.

I've been thinking all morning and over the days before and since our most recent reality TV election that I'll likely not vote in the next one.

I've done that only once before. Had been away from the country for a few years and had only just returned when a federal election was called. I was uninformed and out of touch with the issues which mattered to my riding, the province and the country and so I thought the most responsible thing to do was not vote rather than risk choosing the wrong candidate.

Next time, I am likely not to vote for equally valid reasons:

  • Our democratic institutions and practices no longer function as they should. In fact, I'd say that our democracy has become a sham.
  • The voters have become puppets of the corporate regime, fed propaganda by the corporate media and then blamed by it either for not voting or voting the wrong way.
  • The only value of a vote for a party which never wins is a $1.95 per year between elections. In theory, if a party gets enough votes, then it can buy its way into the public consciousness. Yet not all money has equal purchasing power. I can easily envision corporate media turning down ad purchases by parties whose ideology the owners don't support. That already happens in the U.S. and we know that the CPoC has adopted the U.S. neocons' tactics.

There's a provincial election coming up in BC May 12, 2009. And a second turn at a referendum on electoral reform.

Last time, British Columbians voted 58% in favour of changing to the Single Transferable Vote system. The change we voted for was denied us by the BC legislature's imposition of a 60% threshold. The Opposition NDP approved.

We get to do it all over again on May 12th. Same 60% threshold. Same collusion by the purportedly progressive provincial NDP.

If the BC referendum again doesn't get passed, that provincial election will be the last one in which I cast a vote. I will no longer accept being a tool for corporate Canada.

To have to say this saddens me beyond description.

I'm 58 years old and only missed that one election. Yet as I canvassed with my local candidate over the past weeks, we met many people at the door who had made the decision not to vote. It was never apathy which had turned and was keeping them away; the media has that wrong - deliberately, I suspect. It was disgust which had made these engaged citizens disengage from our farcical electoral process.

Unlike them, I've just been a little slow to catch on.

I'll still write on the issues, volunteer to help my local candidate, and work to inform those who still vote about the practices, policies and platforms of the various parties. But I'll not collude with the major players by allowing myself to be their puppet.

Recommend this post