Sunday, September 27, 2015


We are now past the middle of the campaign that will decide the outcome of the October 19 federal election. I had vowed be active and help to influence the outcome. I am tired of it already.

The season may be partly to blame. In the beginning of the campaign the months of relentless heat, smoke and drought  sapped everyone's energy level. I was hoping to feel more like it when the days got crisp. Not. I am full of energy again but still busy with outdoor work and putting up the harvest. In August I was looking forward to the end, but now my head is back in garden space.

The level of discourse so far leaves much to be desired. I blame the media as much as the politicians. They seem to pay more attention to soundbites and  'gotcha' moments than to discussing the different visions of the parties.  I would like to see more honesty and less partisanship all around. Make an attempt to engage me, the voter, as if I have a brain. 

On scandals:

If a party has been in power for a certain length of time some member will be caught with a hand in the cookie jar. This is wrong, but may well be inevitable considering human nature. I want perpetrators caught and punished, but would like to see the media pay less attention to the details of relatively small scandals. Report on the basics and move on. I would like to see all leaders admit that such things happen. All leaders should do their best to limit the occurrence of corruption and not try to cover it up, but they can't promise 100% success. Scandals, even those plaguing one's opponents, are a distraction and a circus. I do relish the fact that a government that made much of the scandals of its predecessors is hoisted on its own petard. But we have more important issues to deal with.

On the economy.

I would like to see all politicians acknowledge that there are limits to what they can do when in power.  In particular, the whole concept of "managing the economy" needs to be less politicized. Economic cycles seem to be rather like weather. They can be responded to but not totally controlled. 
All parties claim or deny ability to manage the economy depending where the advantage lies.
I did a blog on that in February 2008.  

I would also like to see more honesty about where true power lies these days. Governments still have some, but transnational concerns like corporations and banks have more. Could we please have that out in the open and admit that the corporations have us by the short and curlies, instead of mouthing platitudes about "creating a favorable climate yadayada"?

Social Issues

Issues like gay marriages, niqabs....these are important to some of course, but also carefully manipulated as a distraction from other, more important issues of the day. 

The Big Picture.

There is the inevitable tide of history, in which the rest of the world's population is rightfully rising and demanding it's fair share, even as the world's resources are being strained to the limit.  Could we have an honest discussion about how to deal with the claims of the rest of the world? 

There is the reality of the limits of growth in a finite world. Whether fossil fuels are running out now or will in a hundred years, sooner or later humanity will have to live within a solar budget. Better start now, while we still have some ancient sunlight left to ease the transition.

Whoever is in power, it will never be 1970 again. Be honest about that and stop promising you will bring back the good old days.

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