David McIntosh is a student at Humber College
Posted: March 3, 2015 at 10:19 am
To introduce the 4 reasons why we need to revise our political system we must first understand democracy. “In a democracy, eligible citizens are able to vote for the passing or rejecting of laws, run for office during elections, join political parties, sit on boards or committees, criticize or protest against the government, and receive a fair trial if accused of breaking the country’s laws.”
1) Corruption is one of many issues addressed in democracy when even an elected citizen joins in party due to an election; it is very easy to be corrupted if not already so. An example of many would be the current mayor of Toronto John Tory. John used to work on the board of directors of Rogers cable (1999) prior to his election. Ironically he would like to increase taxes on housing while reducing the taxes on corporations. Hiding behind the concept that it is great for small business to start up, he is placing the national debt on the working people rather than the flourishing corporations (I wonder who paid for his campaigning). Now this is one of many examples on how our current system needs revision. Can one person speak for everyone?
2) Where is our say? There is plenty of controversy over supporting the United States fighting ISIL, yet I didn’t see a ballet box in my mail asking what my opinion was! Simply by asking what the people want rather than telling them what they want can easily give our current system a better direction.
3) The concept of “protesting against the government” as seen in B.C there were dozens of arrests while people were peacefully protesting Kinder Morgan. This was in regards to drilling and surveying contributing to the expansion of the Trans Mountain Pipeline. You can read more about the incident at http://globalnews.ca/news/arrests-made-on-burnaby-mountain-for-fourth-straight-day/. Clearly our opinion is against the pipeline, yet where is the right of Canadians to clean water, clean air, and a healthy environment? As we fight for our rights we are ending up in jail even through a peaceful protest. We haven’t wronged anyone yet the government sides with the corporation once Kinder Morgan obtained a court injunction ordering the protesters to clear the encampment.
4) There is a lack of transparency in our government. Personally being a part-time member for the town of Oakville for 5+ years I have watched tens of thousands of tax dollars be wasted. We are told that we have to pay taxes but we aren’t told where they go. Provincially there has been billions of dollars wasted. An example of that would be the cancellation of the gas plant quoting CBC, “When combined with the costs of the cancellation of a separate gas-fired power plant in Mississauga, Ontarians will be on the hook for up to $1.1 billion, the auditor general said.” Read more at http://www.cbc.ca/news/oakville-gas-plant-cancellation-costs-675m. Now don’t get me wrong I am all for there not being a gas plant in my neighbourhood but when was I ever asked for there to be one there in the first place? This connects to my second point on “where is our say” which could have saved hundreds of millions of dollars and allocated them elsewhere where they could have been used effectively.
In conclusion, I have only touched on few of many issues within our current political system and would like to hear what your stance is! What can we do to create a stronger government?
If our government was open to us we could have not only been aware, but could have implemented solutions. Over and over now we have had to back track and waste tons of tax money which could have been allocated in safer and greener means.
If you gave me 600 million and told me to make money it would go towards a field of solar panels and wind turbines. Safe reliable energy that will only continue to generate revenue other than waste it. http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/oakville-gas-plant-cancellation-costs-675m-ag-says-1.1930206
In conclusion I ask this of you “What can we do as citizens to help form a stronger government with more transparency? Leave a comment below for any suggestions.