Politics, Libertarianism, Candidate No comments
Sorry, I know I haven't been around here much in the past few weeks, but, hopefully, that will change in short order. During the time away, I've managed to search out and find a new place to live, transfer or cancel the bills and finally move all our stuff over to the new place. None of this was done on my own, of course. My fiance helped out a great deal in finding the place and helping clean the old place and my brother and parents helped with the moving of the stuff. My poor brother has had to help me lift my TV up and down stairs about 8 times now and everyone should feel for him. The help is greatly appreciated though.
On another note, I would like to let people know that I have volunteered to run as a candidate for the Libertarian Party of Canada for the Edmonton -- Millwoods -- Beaumont riding in the upcoming (Read: iminent) Federal election. I would love to hear from any and everyone regarding any concerns or questions they may have relevant to the LPC's policies or what it might be like in a Libertarian government. I have touched the issues in a couple articles, namely Libertarianism and Libertarianism Revisited. I really don't mind the questions, or debate, and would genuinely love to hear from you!
On the topic of voting, I was talking with a very nice person that I met at a Libertarian get together. He mentioned that he was an "anarcho-capitalist" and encouraged people not to vote. I, personally, don't agree with the anarcho capitalist's views, in entirety. I believe there needs to be some form of government to deal with foreign matters such as defense and internal matters such as criminal prosecution and intervention. That is my view only, and it may not agree with everything everyone believes in. I was curious, though, as to why he encouraged people not to vote. It seemed odd to me, I was always told: "If you don't vote, you don't have the right to complain". Therefore, I always voted, for better or for worse.
What he presented to me, however, gave me a bit of a paradigm shift. I am always doing my best to listen to people. I definitely don't know everything, and this presented a perfect example of the limits of my views. He told me instead that: "If you vote, you don't have the right to complain". This confused me, but I asked him to explain. The explanation was, more or less, as follows:
When you vote, you are stating that you believe the system you are voting in works for the greater good. No matter what the result, if you have voted, you have stated that you believe the system works and that, even if your choice loses, you accept that the winner was decided by the majority of the people and is for the greater good. If, however, you do not vote, you are stating the opposite. You are stating that you believe the system is broken and that something is in need of change.
The above isn't an exact quote, but you get the idea. Non-voters are recorded in sorts. Elections Canada keeps track of voter turnout every year, and has since Confederation in 1867. Our last election, in January 2006, showed a slight rebound to 64.7% of eligible voters who took advantage of their right to vote. This was from an all time low of 60.9% in June of 2004 and slightly lower 64.1% in November of 20005. If the number gets low enough, then there would be reason to believe that nobody cares about the system anymore, that it is broken and must be replaced or fixed. At such a point, say 20%, it would be very easy for a minority group to get into office and effect real change.
I firmly believe that our government is broken on all levels. We are in need of dramatic changes. The only problem is, these changes are not going to be easy ones. People today have gotten too used to not needing to show responsibility for their actions. They are so used to being able to fall back on the government to support them and be their safety net. Whether it be for Employment Insurance (or the politically incorrect term Unemployment Insurance, as it should be called), Worker's Compensation Board, or even the state of Health Care, the system is broken and is too easily taken advantage of. People taking advantage of these systems cost the taxpayers Billions of dollars. The only way to fix this is to remove government from the equation.
I won't get into details here, but check out my other articles listed above, they list real world examples of how a Libertarian government could work. I would like to end this post by pointing out to you that your freedoms are being eaten away. Our country is currently heading the same direction as our neighbors to the south. Many people have said that what happened in Germany during the 1920's and 1930's couldn't happen in the states, just as they say that it can't happen here at home. I beg to differ and one of the articles in online news clippings yesterday went similar to Salon.com's article, which stated:
Protesters here in Minneapolis have been targeted by a series of highly intimidating, sweeping police raids across the city, involving teams of 25-30 officers in riot gear, with semi-automatic weapons drawn, entering homes of those suspected of planning protests, handcuffing and forcing them to lay on the floor, while law enforcement officers searched the homes, seizing computers, journals, and political pamphlets. Last night, members of the St. Paul police department and the Ramsey County sheriff's department handcuffed, photographed and detained dozens of people meeting at a public venue to plan a demonstration, charging them with no crime other than "fire code violations," and early this morning, the Sheriff's department sent teams of officers into at least four Minneapolis area homes where suspected protesters were staying.
Sounds a lot like the SS sweeping in to disband Jews having a large family dinner, doesn't it? I realize it's not a perfect example, but seriously, full tactical (riot) gear? 25-30 officers? To enforce "fire code violations"? That seems very excessive to me, more like they're trying to stop whatever message the protesters might have. Even their neighbors gave good references about the people in these houses saying that there had "never been any problems of any kind in those houses, that they were filled with "peaceful kids" who are politically active but entirely unthreatening and friendly."
What is this world coming to, eh?