Liberty, Politics, Libertarianism 1 Comment
I have recently come across a political party that made sense. It hit me while I was reading their Statement of Principles. This makes sense! For me, to put "political party" and "made sense" in the same sentence, was a major punch in the gut. What is this world coming to when politics makes sense? I mean, next thing you know, pigs will be flying and unicorns will be everyone's favorite pet!
Ok, backtrack, I have not really followed a whole lot of politics. I have done my "civic duty" and voted, but not really known who I was voting for and only had a vague idea as to each party's policies on legislation and reform. Then one day, I was dismally considering my choices. My choices, as I knew them, were:
- Conservative Party of Canada (CPC) - While these guys have not done anything terrible, they haven't done anything dramatic to clean up the messes that the Liberal Party created. They have some "so-so" ideas like repeal the long gun registry and lower GST to 5%. Ok, the second one is decent and could make a difference, I suppose, on some larger purchases, but the first idea has never materialized and, likely, never will, due to their minority position.
- Liberal Party of Canada (LiPC) - I used to vote for these guys. They had some good plans which worked with my plans regarding business starts. You know, the usual tax incentives, grants, etc. Then, however, they introduced the Firearms Act, Bill C-68. As soon as I realized what this meant to my hobbies, I began to sway. It wasn't a large sway at the time as I wasn't huge into firearms, yet. Then came the Gomery Inquiry into scandals and corruption galore. How many billions of dollars, some of which is provided by my taxes, does someone have to waste before they get the boot? Well, apparently that number has been hit. A lot of people noticed and, as a result, the CPC came into power, for the first time in years, as a minority government. Now I won't touch the LiPC with a 100 ft pencil. Since then, they've introduced a new policy that, if reelected, they will ban all handguns across the country.
- New Democratic Party (NDP) - I never have, and never will, vote for these folks. They are so far into kissing the Union's derriere that I don't even consider them a valid choice. The NDP are good for one thing, pushing through worker's rights, at the expense of everyone else. Look at GM, in Canada they had to be handed hundreds of millions of dollars from our tax dollars to be, essentially, bribed into staying and not shutting their plant down. Fast forward a year and guess what, they're closing down anyway. Some 2000 people are out of jobs. Why? Because they weren't willing to face concessions on their contract. They wanted bigger and better, with no losses. GM knew this would lead to their fall. Due to the labour laws here in Canada though, they were forced to sit down and listen to the union. The union had teeth, GM was only allowed ears. This is the type of policy the NDP fights for. Sure, it'll put the company out of business in 1, 5, 10 or 20 years, but you'll get more when it really matters... now.
So, there you have it, I was stuck. Neither party was going to go for the type of reforms I was looking for. I went over the choices that I could remember, and it popped into my head, they were not the only choices, just the largest ones. I had forgotten about all the smaller parties. So many of them were one track, and while that was all fine and dandy, I needed one that had a sound policy and that I could "get behind", so to speak. I remembered some smaller parties, which were:
- Communist Party of Canada (CtPC) - I didn't really know much about them, but a friend of mine, from way back in high school (yes, I'm going to use the term "way back in"), had been involved with them in the past. I'm looking for alternatives here, so give me a break. I could not get behind this party, though, they were too focused on socialism as an end game. I'm sorry, but socialism is really ugly to me. Essentially it comes down to State-sponsored redistribution of wealth. All property is owned by the community and is redistributed as they see fit. I understand why this might be appealing to people in lower socio-economic circles, as they'd at least get property "distributed" to them. They would rise, though there would also be no effort on their part. This, to me, ends up being a Robin Hood situation, where the State "steals" from the rich and redistributes everything as they see fit. Sorry, but I'm not interested in helping a bum do nothing and get paid for it.
- Marijuana Party of Canada (MPC) - Ok, we should all know what these guys are about, they are one of those "one track" parties I mentioned above. Legalize marijuana, that is the extent of their policies. Sorry, not interested, I need something a little more well rounded.
- Green Party of Canada (GPC) - Again, this is one of those "one track" parties. I believe they have tried to round out, but "tried" is the key word there. Their primary or only, as the case may be, concern, is the environment. Again, I need something more rounded.
Who was left? I remembered a name from around 2003. A friend of mine ran for them in a local election which, at the time, was in Prince George, BC. The name I recalled, was the Libertarian Party of Canada (LPC). The only thing I remembered about them was that they stood for "less government interference". So, on I went to investigate further and find out more about what a "Libertarian" was. I wandered over to the LPC's website and what I found there clicked. Not everything there, I agreed with, but the ideology behind it, made sense. There's that phrase, "made sense". I looked further and here are the principles I found on one of their pages:
- Each individual has the right to his or her own life, and this right is the source of all other rights.
- Property rights are essential to the maintenance of those rights.
- In order that these rights be respected, it is essential that no individual or group initiate the use of force or fraud against any other.
- In order to bar the use of force or fraud from social relationships and to place the use of retaliatory force under objective control, human society requires an institution charged with the task of protecting individual rights under an objective code of rules. This is the basic task, and the only moral justification for, government.
- The only proper functions of government, whose powers must be constitutionally limited are as follows: settling, according to objective laws, disputes among individuals, where private, voluntary arbitration has failed; providing protection from criminals; providing protection from foreign invaders.
- As a consequence of all the above, every individual -- as long as he or she respects the rights of others -- has the right to live as he or she alone sees fit, as a free trader in a free market.
This list gives me hope. The LiPC and CPC have squandered our trusts for so long. Hundreds of billions of our tax dollars have been lost to the idiots in our bureaucracy. Every year, the government is wasting more and more money on silly plans to make it seem like they are doing something to fight a crime wave. They write laws that restrict the law abiding citizens, but do nothing to change a criminal's mind. And, here's the big problem: We are allowing it! Why? We claim to be a nation of free citizens, yet we have to buy a license to allow us the privilege of broadcasting through our own airspace. We claim to be a nation of free people, yet we have to ask the government permission to allow us to defend ourselves. We claim to be a nation of free people, yet... You get the picture. We have so much legislation in place and this legislation strikes fear into all people, except the people who don't care: the criminals. The government, as is, has two objectives in mind with every law it creates and, contrary to popular perception, public safety and common good are not the objectives. The objectives are: create more power for the government and expand the number of jobs in the bureaucracy. In other words, let the government have more and more control. In order to do this, they need more and more people to control their subservient citizens.
I hope this changes. I love my country. I want it to excel in its original purpose, to be the "true north strong and free". How can we be free when everything we love is being attacked by government? When did we go from being the master citizens of our servant government to being the servant citizens of our master government? When was the last time that the few hundred people in our "House of Commons" actually spoke for it's 30 million+ citizens, instead of at them?
Lord Acton (1834-1902) once stated, "It is easier to find people fit to govern themselves than people to govern others. Every man is the best, the most responsible, judge of his own advantage." He also stated, "Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." When will we start heeding this advice and start removing the government's power to limit our lives? When will we start taking responsibility for our own actions and start living to our full potential? I see the LPC helping us do this. The LPC's mandate is to limit government powers substantially. It should be here to protect our nation from foreign invaders and to help mediate or intervene when a person or persons has been stolen from, defrauded or had unwanted force applied to them. That is the government I want. If we limited the government's size, imagine the tax cuts we'd get. Canada did fine up until the early 1930's without taxes, why should we need them now? Taxes were supposed to be temporary and don't tell me the world is too complex for me, that is nothing more than reason to hide behind. We don't need government, but the government needs us. As the old Chinese proverb says, "He who thinks he leads, but has no followers, is only taking a walk." They need us or they have no power, no tax money, and no servants.
Where do you stand?