Those aren't my words - I took that headline from The Australian. A paper on the far side of the world that is watching what's happening here with sadness.
What made me think of this today? I read the article below by Lorrie Goldstien and wondered, where does education fit into this? If we're spending all of our resources on the back end, we're not solving anything, structurally - just throwing the starfish back in the sea, one at a time. Or trying to cure lead poisoning might be a better analogy.
This one quote stood out:
"This isn’t surprising. Few criminals start out by gunning down other criminals in public places, with utter disregard for the lives of innocent bystanders.
Before that happens, they commit a series of escalating offences, typically involving increasing levels of violence, which our justice system does nothing to deter, even when it comes to such basic things as enforcing parole, bail and house arrest orders and holding people responsible when they are violated."
- because it reminded me of the article I read previously, which focused on Harper's piling up of democratic infractions:
"Some of us thought the repercussions from any or all of these developments might have prompted him to change his ways. But we were delusional. His view , as he has made clear, is that it’s just process and the people don’t really care about process. In that, beginning with the Magna Carta, people fought hundreds of years for due democratic process, you might say some do care. But, given his electoral success to date, Mr. Harper has evidence to the contrary."
Make no mistake it, Stephen Harper is dismantling Canadian democracy - our system has become more opaque, less informed, more cynical - more empire than the federation we signed up for. The reason for this, to me, is pretty clear - Harper doesn't trust, has contempt for and ultimately fears what the Opposition (both on the Hill and any group that opposes him) could do to him. Err, the country.
With each offence he commits and gets away with, Harper is emboldened to break the rules a bit further. What's more, this is the Prime Minister - supposedly, the most accountable man in Canada. If he can get away with rule-breaking, what message does it send to others?
We're left with two questions to be answered:
Do Canadians care enough about our democratic process?
For those that are fully behind Harper's dismantling of transparency and accountability - have you thought what will happen when he's gone?