My next few blogs will describe some of the things that make Canada great - and better than most other countries and cultures ( hope I do not get arrested for writing something so politically-incorrect!)
Our Great Political System
I have many complaints about Canada, and out of love for my country have often aired these in writing. But I defend the historical fact that almost no other political system in history – and few for such a length of time – has produced such peace and prosperity combined, when it comes to influence over rulers, with the right of the people “to throw the bastards out.” That is a most lovely right, and a dear gift of our ancestors, to be venerated. Nor has any other system but ours defended to the death the most revolutionary idea of all: that all people everywhere have rights (and duties) that are independent of the culture in which they happen to find themselves. They are rights grounded, it is argued, in human nature, and not in any one culture. This was a claim and ideal of ancient Greek and Roman “natural law” as can be clearly seen in the works of such as Cicero. It was later a Christian claim and ideal spread by the Gospels (and most clearly articulated philosophically by Saint Thomas Aquinas), and it has found a vulnerable success wherever Western values have spread. Further, and despite all that may be reproached of our unique limited representative democratic system embedded in a constitutional monarchy, our right to express our individual views through elected Parliamentarians who in turn are checked by a loyal opposition, and a region-based Senate system (so as not to trample minority regions) – the whole jumble is a superior crowning glory! Included also are our many other inherited checks and balances on raw power. And so much of this we owe to Mother England. I defend all this as a superior system because no other people has ever produced anything as good. The oft-vaunted Greek and Roman democracies were slave-infested systems. Even the American republican system is not as good, as our founders well knew, because the Americans hold elections in which they castigate, vilify, and ridicule each other - we have just witnessed a feast of such frenzied abuse in the American 2016 election - and then, after all candidates have declared that all candidates are incompetent ... one of them is elected! Whereupon, all those who voted for the losers - sometimes more than half of all the people - find themselves unrepresented. But Canadians have a non-political Monarch who always represents and symbolizes them as one united people. Most Canadaisn are unaware that in this sense, the Prime Minister represents only the government of the people, not the people themselves. Only the Queen does that (or within Canada, the Governor-General). It is a superior and noble thing indeed to have a symbol of high decency representing all the people that cannot be touched by partisan politics! So do not pretend other systems are as good … or you may soon find yourself living under one of them!