Vive Le Canada

Maude Barlow's daily blog on Maclean's
Date: Wednesday, January 04 2006

Maude Barlow will be doing a semi-daily blog posting on until Election Day on January 23.

These will be short postings of a few paragraphs every day or so with thoughts on key issues and on the election as it unfolds. The site is still being constructed but her first posting can be found at

We're Off To The Races

So they are off and running, with the two front parties in a dead heat. My immediate first thought is really a gut fear: that anger with the Liberals will lead to the triumph of Bush conservatism in Canada and American style private health care.

While the desire of Canadians for change is entirely understandable, it is imperative that we think this through carefully. At stake is the role of government itself. Polls consistently show that Canadians want activist (but responsible!) government. They will not get that with Stephen Harper whose record supports minimalist government and private social programs.

The real change we need is a reform of the democratic process itself, including participatory democracy, proportional representation and an end to both elite accommodation and the power of the corporate lobby to dictate policy. Under proportional representation the last Parliament would have had approximately 113 Liberals, 91 Conservatives, 48 New Democrats, 13 Greens, 38 from the Bloc, and 4 Independents.

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