With parliament once again back in session I am again fighting depression, its not that the attack on our democracy increases any more during these time but that it receives greater attention and is far more obvious. We have seen the statements by Minister Oliver and by PM Harper regarding the need to 'streamline' environmental hearings and how those that oppose multinational projects that threaten our lands and forests, rivers and oceans are 'radicals' and 'enemies' of Canada' which shows us exactly how much respect this regime has for due process. We have seen them declare that Canada will not participate in future efforts to curb world environmental change without so much as a debate in parliament, we have seen the move to 'harmonize' our regulations and border security with the U.S. Again with out any consultation with either the citizens or their representatives in the House of Commons. But these things are about specific major projects and if these things are not deemed important enough to debate in the house then what of lesser matters?
With the house back in session but a few days we see exactly where things are going, on day one 'time allocation' was used to restrict debate after just two hours. Many committee hearings have already been declared 'in camera' so that all details of same will be withheld from public scrutiny. The PM announces changes to Canadians pension plans, not in the house but overseas, changes that effect the most vulnerable in our society but leave the rich and powerful unaffected. A manufacturing plant which received millions in 'incentives' and was the backdrop for one of King Harpers photo op announcements packs up shop and lays off 100s and the silence from Ottawa is deafening. We could all add to the list but can do little about it, hence the depression.
It seems I am not alone in my lack of optimism regarding our collective future under this regime, Lorne over at Politics and its Discontents it would seem has similar feelings.....
“I have to admit that nowadays I am feeling the pessimism of old strongly reemerging, not to the point of giving up my blog and whatever value it might serve in the fight against the extremists who now control the Canadian government, but to the point where I realize that the battle is lost without the willingness of Canadians, no matter how hard their daily struggles might be, to educate themselves about the issues and keep current with as many facets as possible of the neoliberal agenda being relentlessly advanced by those who pretend to represent us. “
And there is the rub “pretend to represent us” ..... Exactly!