Some of the comments regarding the proposed platform for the CPP have come to me via email and this section of the website will be used to share these exchanges. It is hoped that those reading the posts here will also take the time to submit comments.
The first exchange here is from Derek Skinner who sent me his critique of the 2nd draft on Feb. 28, 2014. I have inserted my response to Mr. Skinner’s observations. Because I can’t colour code my reply I will highlight Mr. Skinners words in BOLD. Mine will be in regular text.
I would like to thank you for taking the time to actually read that second draft and then pen your much appreciated views.
On 2014-02-28, at 11:02 PM, Derek Skinner wrote:
Arthur, I have read the second edition of your Manifesto and while there is much with which I can agree, there are a lot of negatives. I don’t want to load your webpage with these negatives so I am writing separately on each issue.
1. I applaud your attempt to create a manifesto which will energise the country. I am trying to generate the same response and Leadnow.ca is already in the lead with its “connect” initiatives. We last two are working to create a grassroots up concensus which will truly represent the peoples wishes which can be converted into political action in 2015. It appears to me that you are stating a top down authoritarian policy and asking people to accept it. Same as any other existing Party. Respectfully, I don’t think that will fly very far.
A.T.: The reason why the proposed manifesto or constitution appear that way is based upon the following premise. No changes of any significance that might alter the present situation with respect to our political predicament today could possibly occur unless a party platform clearly spelled out its intentions beforehand and the electorate knew in advance what the changes would be if the people voted for that agenda. The catch to this of course is that in formulating such a program it automatically must appear as a “top down authoritarian policy”. I’m not aware of any other method in which the proposals could be framed but if you know of one I would appreciate hearing about it.
Transparency is of the utmost concern when trying to persuade people of any solutions that a party is attempting to convey in their literature and that’s why it behooves those drafting their schemes to be as forthright and honest and open about what they see as a solution to the problems.
So, yes, it would appear to be similar in that respect to the other mainstream parties but of course it isn’t because it is based upon deconstructing the programs of all of the other parties and in the process overhauling the whole of the underlying framework upon which the nation now is resting. An example of this is when I speak of a new Canadian Constitution to replace the present one. Trudeau’s subterfuge notwithstanding my concept of a real constitution is one which is presented to the people as a whole and then the people vote on it in a national referendum, not politicians with vested interests in promoting one party or another. But to reach that point it’s imperative that whatever party is promoting such a radical change of methodology they would have to have first gained the consent of the voters beforehand by winning a majority government.
Now to deal with the Items of your manifesto. I sense that with many items you will turn off another percentage of possible voters.
A.T.: That’s a given Derek.
New Canadian Constitution. You can’t get near this unless you are a majority government already.
A.T.: I don’t see your reasoning here Derek. If you were presenting the concept to the people as I outlined above and you were voted into government with a majority of seats then you would be in such a position no? There’s nothing preventing a new party from making these proposals to the people in order to make them aware of such an initiative and if the people see it as a good idea then it would unfold on its own.
Complete separation from British Crown. There goes between 20% and 40% of possible support.
A.T.: Yes. Agreed. My dear friend Robin Mathews who you may be aware of told me that as well. But it cannot be otherwise given who the “Crown” is and what it represents in terms of its power and influence over the nation. So long as the terminology remains in Canadian jurisprudence and so long as the people are basing their beliefs in the monarchy on false premises it can only hold up any meaningful changes that have to take place in order for Canada to become truly independent.
Dissolution of the Senate. I would prefer Reform of an elected Senate but let that go.
A.T.: An elected Senate is an option that also holds promise but it would still present undue problems and under the provisions of a new constitution and a new way of government doing its business I believe we might be able to circumvent the need for it. Of course it is one of those issues that would have to be debated further. I can imagine a Council of Elders providing guidance and direction within the framework of government which would be the same idea more or less but could be the opportunity to rethink the actual aims and purposes of such a body.
Men and Women in the Political System. Bravo.
Election of the Prime Minister. O.K.
Canadian Judicial System. O.K. but “100% Canadian” By ethnicity, residence, citizenship or what?
A.T.: This of course relates to the issue of dual citizenship that is mentioned elsewhere in the proposal.
Changes to Acts of Parliament. ….economic and international ties… This will leave Canada standing alone for a take down by the banking cartel. Let alone the penalties to be levied under NAFTA and a bunch of other trade deals.
A.T.: The whole of the initiative to create a party of the people is based upon that fundamental premise Derek. The power and influence of the international banking cartel is precisely what has gotten our nation into the predicaments that it now is facing and has been facing for decades.
There is no simple way to get from under the rubble of deception and collusion that the nation has been deceptively placed. In many respects we’re in the same boat as post WW1 Germany was after the Treaty of Versailles.
As Shelley Ann Clark pointed out with regard to Mulroney’s Conservative free trade deal it was all a massive scam.
First Nations. Bravo but one caveat. When First Nations have absolute control of their territory, some will sell off chunks for immediate gain. LOTS OF PREDATORS WAITING FOR THE CHANCE TO NEGOTIATE SOMETHING.
A.T.: That, of course, is an assumption of yours Derek. I’ve lived and worked with First Nations people most of my life and I think I can safely assure you that if they were given sovereignty over their territories that the FN people themselves would make their own provisions which would prevent just that type of scenario from occurring. The current Idle No More movement is a prime example of how FN’s feel about their land.
Canadian Citizenship. O.K. Goodby Elizabeth May and a lot of corporate senior management.
Immigration policies. Hmmm! We need a % of East Indian and Chinese talents to smarten up the Canadian standards. You could lose a lot of new Canadians support here. It smacks of racism.
A.T.: Even new Canadians must realize that until the country is basically self-sufficient and our own house is in order that to continue to bring in more and more immigrants isn’t helpful. And if they’re not or unwilling to see this because they may have their own agenda for the nation then I don’t think such concerns should outweigh the overall security of the country as a whole. As far as it smacking of racism that’s erroneous simply because it would affect every race in the sense that no one would be allowed in be they this or that ethnicity.
Return to using the Bank of Canada. I have written a book on this. The subject has many legs.
A.T.: I would appreciate having a copy Derek. Is it available online somewhere? Or in pdf format?
Freedom of speech. O.K.
Private property. I don’t know “allodial”. Transfer documentation will be an enormous task.
A.T.: Allodial comes from the Latin term “allodium” and originally meant an estate held in absolute ownership. In many respects it’s like the “F Grants” which were given out to placer miners back in the 19th Century by Queen Victoria. They had absolute control over these grants and some still exist today here in B.C. where I’m living. Fee simple title is rather deceptive in that if you, for whatever reasons, cannot pay your property taxes then the “Crown” can claim your property.
Energy and Natural Resources. 100% agreement but how will you deal with NAFTA and CETA?
A.T.: As noted above. This nation holds more capital buried in its natural resources than most countries in the world and places us in a position where we don’t have to rely upon imports for survival. That gives us the leverage to do what other nations dare not.
Taxes. Can’t agree. All Canadians have a right to the benefits accruing from the land and its resources. An incalculably large and inexaustible value in $ terms. For that priviledge I think they should pay a fee (tax) relative to the value that they extract.
A.T.: Yes. I agree with you in a sense. Given that the resources are ours (the people’s) we definitely have a right to the benefits accruing from them. Let me narrow it down to my own 5 acre small holding where I live. I have the right to the resources existing on my property. I use the water and the soil to grow gardens and so on. Must I pay someone a tax for this? Now in the case of Canada if we are selling our resources to other nations then we would charge the correct amount for them and that would preclude any further need for taxes. Possibly I’m misinterpreting what you’re saying here Derek.
Government Pensions and Canadian Elders. Amen. I’m 89.
A.T.: I’m a mere lad of 67 but I too say “Amen” to this. 🙂
New Canadian Education System. Agreed but Catholic school parents will leave you.
A.T.: The Catholics, or any other religious grouping, can fund their own schools if they so desire.
Health Care. Agreed but I think a lot of privately manufactured natural health products are useless and possibly dangerous.
A.T.: Any product that is 100% organic cannot be dangerous unless of course it is prescribed incorrectly i.e. such as for external use rather than internal use but those types of hypothetical scenarios would be very unlikely given the need to label products.
The Marijuana issue. O.K. What will you suggest regarding the latest government licencing of production.
A.T.: I would leave all production of Marijuana to the private sector and keep the government out of it, especially this government which, while it pays lip service to medicinal pot still insists on maintaining draconian criminal laws against the non-medical use of the herb.
Canadian Policing System. Cannot agree. Different policing legislation between Provinces will lead to circumvention of law. “absolutely independent watchdog”… CSIS should be restructured to prevent intervention from offshore.
A.T.: With all due respect Derek I would suggest that you do not have any idea just how corrupt the RCMP is. It is beyond fixing in terms of its criminal conduct and besides that it’s direct connection with the “Crown” makes it a part of the old system that would have to end when a new constitution was enacted. Provinces would not be able to circumvent federal law with respect to a criminal code for all the people.
End to Lobbying? There are many civil organisations that will want to lobby for injusticies or policy. Council of Canadians?
A.T.: Every individual and/or organization should and would have the right to petition the government and that right would have to remain sacrosanct. What I’m referring to are the lobbyists within the nation who use their inordinate power and influence to bend the politicians to their own particular agendas which may or may not be in the best interests of Canada as whole.
Secret Societies. O.K. Wouldn’t have thought this was significant. All the offensive organizations are known.
A.T.: The Freemasons are a very significant factor within the judiciary Derek and it plays a role in how justice unfolds in Canada’s court rooms.
Environmental Protection.. Best o’ luck. You will have to deal with NAFTA, CETA etc.
A.T.: As above…so below…so to speak.
Nuclear Power ? The CANDU design has never caused a problem apart from the disposal of contaminated waste.
A.T.: “Contaminated waste” is the primary reason for ridding the world of this form of energy. The overall effects of radiation are playing havoc with the health and well being of the whole world and we need to use our technological skills to find and/or develop other safer forms of energy. We owe this to all future generations on the planet human or otherwise.
Military Matters. Best o’ luck with this one too. The States will never let go of control of the Canadian military. They will fight to maintain control.
A.T.: I hardly think that the states would invade Canada in order to maintain control of our military. That is one of the reasons for maintaining a strong militia of the Swiss type.
Fire Arms and a Canadian Militia. You just lost 50% of the people remaining to adopt your manifesto.
A.T.: Properly explained to the populace without all the fear and rhetoric used by the mainstream parties and the mainstream media I’m confident that the public would see the common sense of such a proposal. Again, all of these apparent radical reforms ultimately blend together when one looks at the bigger picture.
International Trade Agreements. I agree they have to be modified (investment clauses, property rights, Capter 11) or outright cancelled but you have to form the government first and you haven’t laid out how you will do that and fund the election of MPs at $60,000 to $100,000 cost per Riding.
A.T.: That is the point of highlighting these issues in one’s platform or constitution so the people can and understand why it would benefit the country as a whole. It brings us back to your very first observation about the CPP’s proposal being “a top down authoritarian policy”. The way to form such a government is to explain in as much detail as possible what the problems are and how they can be fixed.
Communications Systems. Agreed.
Sorry, Arthur, I didn’t think it would be as hurtful as this but I think you have to be realistic.
You are aiming for a star but you are a bit short on rocket fuel.
A.T.: On the contrary Derek I don’t find your comments hurtful at all. I am most grateful for your contribution. If anything they provide me with an additional perspective and one that is very useful in this ongoing effort to provide as clear and concise a picture of present realities as possible.
Man’s reach ought to exceed his grasp Derek or what’s a new political party for? 🙂
The fuel for this rocket is yet to be refined. That’s what the present initiative is designed to produce in the end.
I thank you for helping me out in this regard.
From: Robin Mathews <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Fwd: A Final Effort for Change.
Date: 6 March, 2014 12:38:01 PM PST
To: radical <email@example.com>, firstname.lastname@example.org
Dear Derek and Arthur.
Thanks for doing this and sending it on. It is splendid, informative, strong. WITH A MAJORITY GOVERNMENT is a key phrase, I think. And on the way to that goal, I agree totally with Arthur – the more an electorate knows about what is intended as a majority government, the more the population knows what it is voting for.
The un-picking of any basis of the structure of society has great threats attached as well as great possibilities. To use a SOILED example. The U.S. obviously spent $6 billion to destabilize the Ukraine, and to bring about a coup. Whether the U.S. intended it or not, olde and neo-Nazis are taking power. The U.S. probably wanted a milksop, suck-up, soft new government. If that is the case, Putin can laugh in their faces. (I’m with Putin.)
In an honest toil to rebuild and “reconstitute”, such as we are all concerned with, the same problem is present. Dirty politics can grab the prize and turn hopes to dust. THAT IS WHY I say the unpicking should be of the kind that doesn’t present the possibility of dirty grabbing of power. THAT IS WHY I say the major, the chief changes should be made – where possible – without opening the door with a vacuum to dirty takeover. I repeat that there are things in the proposed platform that are of key and central importance: electoral structures and penalties, banking, foreign trade agreements, (and, yes, dual citizenship), first nations rights, reconstruction of the courts, reconstruction of policing in Canada, healthcare, education, lobbying – and(in that last regard) ending any of the dirty prerogatives the corporations have.
As I said to you, Arthur, earlier. All the things I have listed can be effected under the present constitution. Yes. Change the constitution. But without undue Trauma and after some of the great things have been changed under the present constitution, proving the integrity of the request for constitutional change. AND, in addition, the constitutional change should not contain unnecessary, trauma-producing shocks. If it is to be referendumed, then it must be convincing enough to carry.
The only CASE I will make for Derek and me in this discussion is that we have both been deeply involved in (non-major, I think) political parties, have been candidates, have campaigned, have fund-raised, have wrangled and wrangled INSIDE our parties. That gives a kind of sensitivity to the possible (WHICH IS NOT TO BE CONFUSED WITH HALF-HEARTEDNESS OR WILLINGNESS TO COMPROMISE AND THROW OUT PRIMARY PROJECTS), to what will go, to what is OF PRIMARY IMPORTANCE and what of secondary and tertiary.
I hope the above makes a little sense and is a contribution to the discussion.