Why do Lib bloggers hold democracy in such contempt?

Ok, this is partisan but not really. I thought it was really silly when Harper shut down parliament two times in order to disrupt the political process and not merely because the legislative mission had been accomplished earlier than expected (political scientists will get what I am saying here).

As long as I have taught Canadian politics I have always asked my students if they think party discipline helps or hinders the democratic process? The answer of course depends on what you think a representative democracy should be about. I have tended to hew closer to Rousseau: representatives represent their constituents right or wrong. If local politicians cannot convince their local constituents of the veracity of their or their party’s position then tough luck.

There are of course limits but the long registry does not to my mind come close.

Here are the brass tacks of the matter. I doubt very much that the long gun registry is a primary voting issue; it is more of an “and also issue.” That is to say, for most voters I suspect that the long gun registry is a non-mobilizing issue. For some segments of rural and northern Canada it maybe a primary issue but not really in the south. the reality of the situation is that the long gun registry is needlessly divisive and of dubious merit. A free vote is the way these things should be settled: if the majority of representatives vote for something it is passed as the majority will of their constituents.

What liberal bloggers really seem to want Jack to do is force his members to vote against their constituents desires as Iggy has done. I guess a strong leader is someone who believes they have the right to decide for others. The basic instinct of democracy says otherwise.

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4 thoughts on “Why do Lib bloggers hold democracy in such contempt?

  1. I think it is the times that are dictating the opposition to Layton’s position. Now is not the time for being the democratic ideal. Canada is in a crisis of government and we progressives need a unified fight to defeat the Conservatives. It is war for our country. It is being threatened by an agenda that dislikes who we are, what we stand for and how we live our lives. The Conservatives want to turn us into the USA and shade our democracy with theocracy. At the risk of sounding like a mad anarchist, it is time for the NDP and the Liberals to mount a cohesive, unified front to preserve our democracy as a country. If a party’s few members’ self interest gets in the way, I go with the democracy of the country of democracy within a party. It is time to sacrifice our selfish wants for the good of the entire country.

  2. Oops. I meant in the second to last sentence:

    If a party’s few members’ self interest gets in the way, I go with the democracy of the country over the democratic ideals within a party.

  3. Jymn says, “…If a party’s few members’ self interest gets in the way, I go with the democracy of the country over the democratic ideals within a party.. It is time to sacrifice our selfish wants for the good of the entire country.”

    Liberals have sacrificed our democracy for their political needs time and again. They have voted for Harper on many things simply to avoid an election. We would not be be voting on this matter today were it not for the Liberals voting for Harper on confidence isses 120+ times.

    The Liberals taking up the mantle of protectors is about as ludicrus as their unwhipped vote on same-sex marriage an on a woman’s right to choose.

    Democratic ideals, no matter how uncomfortable, are what keep us on track.

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