Prime Minister Harper acts as though he has a legitimate mandate to represent Canadians, while ignoring the sensibilities and priorities of the 75.8% of adult Canadians who did not vote for his party. The only reason he can get away with this is because our present electoral system is wildly dysfunctional.
Founder, Canadians for Justice
B. J. Trister is the founder of Canadians for Justice, an organization that works to hold governments and corporations to account for unethical and unjust behaviour. He also founded The Equality Trust Canada, an organization that advocates for the reduction of income in equality in Canada. He has Canadian and American law degrees and is a retired lawyer. During his legal career, he was appointed to various positions by the federal, provincial and municipal governments. He has served on numerous not-for-profit boards.
We take it for granted that we live in a democracy. That label for our political system is, however, no longer accurate. Premier Dalton McGuinty's decision to shut down the Ontario legislature until his successor is chosen (whenever that might be) is further evidence that our democracy is under constant threat, more so in fact by the powerful than by terrorists. McGuinty has employed the same tactic Harper used a few years ago, presumably to stop the opposition from further investigating the Liberals' roles in the Ornge affair and gas plant closures as well as possibly censuring one of his cabinet ministers. Has the Premier also forgotten how to walk and chew gum at the same time?
10/17/2012 12:10 EDT
The answer to the problem of majority rule by the minority is to achieve electoral reform so that the electoral system is sound enough to itself produce a truly representative government. In the last election, the electoral system awarded 53.9 per cent of the seats to a party that won only 39.6 per cent of the votes cast, and allowed that party to form the government.
04/27/2012 11:35 EDT
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