Thursday, June 16, 2011

Abolish The Senate

It's pretty entertaining to watch Harper have to wrestle with the unelected Senators whom he appointed over the years. It's pretty straightforward, these guys like the fat salaries and perk package that senators get for doing sweet f**k all - except standing as a visible expression of the aristocratic and undemocratic origins of our parliamentary system.

This also raises the question of whether the Senate should be reformed at all or just abolished as most premiers feel - and over which Quebec is threatening to take the federal government to court. It can all seem a little obscure, this Senate debate, but really what this is all about is providing a bulwark against legislation that challenges the established order of things. The august body has been called a forum for "sober second thought" for a reason. But democracy is democracy - why do we need another body of overpaid politicians to decide again on something that was already decided? What's more, the basis upon which they will be elected will be less democratic, providing equal numbers of Senators from each of the provinces, regardless of population.

Our parliamentary, first past the post, democratic system is already wanky enough. We don't need another layer of over-priced wankery. Take the money and invest it in something useful, like retirement homes or daycare programs.

As an aside, I can't understand why the NDP - the Official Opposition - isn't quoted in this regard. They officially are for abolishing the Senate. Instead we get Bob Rae, leader of the rump Liberals as the only opposition politician quoted. I've noticed, similarly, that there is no voice from the NDP with regards to the present strikes by Canada Post or Air Canada - at least not in the Globe & Mail. What's up with that?

Friendly fire erupts as Tory senators balk at Harper’s term-limit plan - The Globe and Mail
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