A blog to give a voice to our concern about the continued erosion of our democratic processes not only within the House of Commons and within our electoral system but also throughout our society. Here you will find articles about the current problems within our parliamentary democracy, about actions both good and bad by our elected representatives, about possible solutions, opinions and debate about the state of democracy in Canada, and about our roles/responsibilities as democratic citizens. We invite your thoughtful and polite comments upon our posts and ask those who wish to post longer articles or share ideas on this subject to submit them for inclusion as a guest post.
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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Is this Democracy? -Updated

“Harper’s strategy of refusing to take more than five questions a day from reporters amounts to a gross disservice to the public. Four of the permitted questions (generally two in French and two in English) go to reporters following Harper’s campaign, while the fifth is allotted to a local scribe, wherever the Conservative news conference that day happens to be staged. .....
It’s ironic. The Conservatives came to power promising more accountability, more openness and more access to information. Those principles matter the most in an election, when people need as many answers as possible to make an informed choice.”

“Two young ladies were removed from a Conservative rally in London because a Facebook page showed them posing with Ignatieff, I was unaware of some of the more sinister details, details that potential voters both young and old should take note of.

While the ejection of two young and new voters is deplorable enough, it seems the real story here is the fact that the RCMP was acting in a political capacity by removing them at the Conservatives' behest.”

A Dartmouth volunteer who helps homeless veterans was turned away from a Stephen Harper election rally last week and the man calls it a slap in the face to those who have been injured in service of their country.
On Thursday, Jim Lowther and fellow veterans advocate Gary Zwicker went to the Halterm container pier on the Halifax waterfront hoping to get a few minutes with Harper, or at least to watch his speech. But a Conservative staffer in a suit and tie denied them entry at the gate.
When a candidate for the position of Prime-minister wont take questions and restricts attendance to his already limited 'photo ops' we must ask is this the sort of man and the party we want to lead the country into the digital age of open and accessible information. Can we believe ANYTHING he says when he was previously elected on a platform of 'open and accessible' government?
UPDATE 6 Apr 2011
Another university student says she was barred from a Conservative event with Prime Minister Stephen Harper — this time because of her environmental activism.
Joanna MacDonald, a fourth-year environmental sciences student at Guelph University, says she pre-registered for Harper's election campaign event at the school Monday. But after arriving with a friend, MacDonald says she was directed to a desk where she was told her name had been flagged and she was asked to leave..............
MacDonald was told the RCMP was doing the screening for the Conservative party event and since she has no criminal record — nor any political party affiliation for that matter — she demanded to know why she was being flagged.
An unidentified official eventually told her it was likely because she had participated with the Sierra youth coalition on climate change at the Cancun conference last December.

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The Writ 2011 said...

We also think that this is a central issue in the campaign. The issues of transparency and open government are related to political accountability, and respect for the rule of law, all of which should be the key issue in assessing the Conservative party's record in government. Check out our thoughts at http://thewrit2011.blogspot.com

Jim Parrett said...

Does it matter? Canadians don't care. We are a TV nation succumbing to commercials and the Liberals are too late with too little. There is no more politics. It's all about the Benjamins. We are a nation of money not governance. Put a pizza in the oven because we have lost.

Rural said...

If as you say “Canadians dont care”, and I do not believe that for one moment, then we are indeed 'lost'. I believe Canadians DO care but are being stymied by the lack of viable choices and the vulgarities of our antiquated 'first past the post' electoral system.