Jump to content

Is Canada a full democracy?


myata

Recommended Posts

In a democracy, governments exist to fulfill the will of the people, and are checked and controlled by them. This is the theory but what does it mean in practice?

One can think and propose several grades of how democratic a system of public governance is.

First, following directly from the definition, in a democracy people have the right to prevent and stop any government actions that are not in their interests; and at the same time, make governments pay attention, work on, and fulfill tasks and projects that the society considers important, not the government.

This broad description can itself be split into grades.

1. Right to know: in sufficient for an informed decision detail and in sufficient time before government action is taken.

2. Right to prevent a "wrong" decision, policy, etc that are not in the interests of the society

3. Right to stop a wrong government action: via democratic mechanisms or direct peaceful citizen action

4. Right to know again (inquire): full details about wrong decisions in a timely manner established via independent, trusted process

5. Right to accountability: in case of a wrong government decision, a remedial action immediately or in a timely manner

6. Right to responsibility: right to demand remedial action in the event it's delayed till the problem is addressed

7. Right to remove the government via democratic process: if performance is not satisfactory or not fully addresses the needs of the society.

I personally would stop the list right here because I see no practical benefits in long delayed, unacceptably or even ridiculously long after the fact "commissions" and "inquiries". I insist that they do not change anything, cannot change anything and their true purpose is not to fix or improve anything but to give the society a wrong impression, a false visibility of accountability.

Very recently we have seen examples of workings of true democracies on levels 1 and 2 in the UK (tax reform) and US (legal stops on unnecessary mandates and on Trump's attempt to undermine a free election). What about Canada though? SNC-Lavalin affair, potentially a major, third-world level violation of democratic principles of separation of powers and independent justice, went all the way to the level 7 where passivity of the society, obscurity and government control over parliamentary process did not result in any meaningful response and lessons learned by the government. So it came right back with ridiculous Emergency Measures.

Without effective mechanism, tradition and record of citizens control over the governments, is Canada still a full democracy in the modern, transparent, directly responsible to the citizens meaning of the word?

 

Edited by myata
Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, myata said:

In a democracy, governments exist to fulfill the will of the people, and are checked and controlled by them. This is the theory but what does it mean in practice?

One can think and propose several grades of how democratic a system of public governance is.

First, following directly from the definition, in a democracy people have the right to prevent and stop any government actions that are not in their interests; and at the same time, make governments pay attention, work on, and fulfill tasks and projects that the society considers important, not the government.

That is a nice overview of a democracy. I presume you are a newcomer to Canada so you are unfamiliar with this country. Canada is not a democracy. I can't think of any country that claims to be a democracy. There are military juntas, republics and monarchies. (I apologize to the rest of you for being repetitive.)

Just so we are clear, Canada is a Monarchy. We can quibble about "constitutional," but the fact remains, we have a King. We have a Parliament to advise the King and to vote taxes to pay for the policies the King's ministers propose. In Myanmar, they have a military junta. Red China, Russia, the USA and North Korea have presidents. We do not. So, you need to understand, Canada is a Monarchy and your obsession with some utopian "democracy" doesn't apply to Canada. Thank God.

Edited by Queenmandy85
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, RedDog said:

It’s never been a democracy. Get Alberta Out and negotiate payback. It will break Canada via the World Court. Not a bad thing.

Just out of curiosity, RedDog, have you ever considered what would happen to Alberta if she decided to leave Canada? Alberta would be landlocked with no access to the sea. The layout of the transportation network is a thin string between Edmonton and Calgary. It is extremely vulnerable for attack by loyalists.  

The US will not allow the Keystone pipeline into the US. BC will not only prevent more pipelines, but will probably shut off the lines that exist now. You will no longer have access to Saskatchewan's uranium. You will see a massive exodus of business and investment. With no access to markets, the oil patch and the oil sands will shut down. So, welcome back to Canada. We missed you. ?

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Queenmandy85 said:

Just out of curiosity, RedDog, have you ever considered what would happen to Alberta if she decided to leave Canada? Alberta would be landlocked with no access to the sea. The layout of the transportation network is a thin string between Edmonton and Calgary. It is extremely vulnerable for attack by loyalists.  

The US will not allow the Keystone pipeline into the US. BC will not only prevent more pipelines, but will probably shut off the lines that exist now. You will no longer have access to Saskatchewan's uranium. You will see a massive exodus of business and investment. With no access to markets, the oil patch and the oil sands will shut down. So, welcome back to Canada. We missed you. ?

Basically the radical left running the rest of Canada and the US is pummelling Alberta into submission.  Yes that’s obvious. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

So at this count, we have two to nil for Canada being not a democracy at all (a stronger statement than the OP). Other arguments?

7 hours ago, RedDog said:

It’s never been a democracy.

5 hours ago, Queenmandy85 said:

I presume you are a newcomer to Canada so you are unfamiliar with this country. Canada is not a democracy.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I wouldn't call any society which does not have effective mechanisms for p.p. 1-3 in the definition a full democracy as it would not live up to the key property: effective ability of the citizens to control their governments. With near-absolute majority rule that can hide any issue, delay decisions, avoid meaningful responses and unbound now even by traditions/conventions parliamentary dictate, the conclusion for Canada is then quite clear. Three to nil.

One common trick that Canadian bureaucracies use to escape and avoid responsibility is a vague notion of "intent" (near-impossible to prove) versus recorded act (factual). For example, in a full democracy an attempt of a government bureaucrat to interfere with the course of an independent process of justice, a fact, itself can be criminal and merit a criminal investigation and there are multiple examples, in real democracies. But nah, not here. We'll go into long serenades about great intentions and the inborn prerogative of zero accountability will wash away all sins with the next tuk-tuk election.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

14 hours ago, myata said:

In a democracy, governments exist to fulfill the will of the people, and are checked and controlled by them. This is the theory....

 

Theory?

The practice is that people pay their taxes.

Myata, the evidence that Canada (and the US) are civilised societies is that millions of people pay their taxes.

====

In dysfunctional societies such as Lebanon, Haiti, Somalia or even Greece, people simply don't pay taxes. In Sweden, Canada, Japan and Vermont, we pay taxes. 

True, no individual Canadian happily pays any tax - but we pay.

IMHO, your complex list is interesting but the ultimate measure of a "democracy" is whether people pay their taxes.

In Canada and Australia, people do. In Nigeria and Vietnam, they don't.

Edited by August1991
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

30 minutes ago, August1991 said:

but the ultimate measure of a "democracy" is whether people pay their taxes.

That's a looooooong stretch, by quite an arbitrary attribute. You can imagine that in a society like Chile Pinochet's or Putin's Russia not paying taxes to authoritarian government would cost one very dearly - perhaps even more than here. Clearly this is no indicator of either existence or effectiveness of the necessary democratic functions listed in the OP.

Just because you mentioned it though, an interesting question would be, who pays taxes in Canada and how? Why tax loopholes remain firmly in place despite all kinds of papers disclosed? And that brings us back to the points made in OP of course: if actions and agendas of governments are dictated by their own, or closed group interests rather than by the citizens, can such societies be seen as full modern democracies?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, Dougie93 said:

Canada is a Monarchy and

Right. Those who cannot do, make and accomplish, choose to live in their fantasies, dreams, memories of glories long past. Good night dear... and do hope to not wake to major surprises (the evolution did not promise that to the dinosaurs though)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

.. in England citizens limited and bounded absolute powers of their monarchs not once, many times, including numerous revolts. Here you have created an impossible mongrel between the absolute rule and quasi-democracy, in fact a see-through facade for unchecked and unaccountable rule and never bothered to think again how it could live, not to mention, what it means. Oh well, to each their own. Just don't claim that ancestry, you are as far from it in both fact and spirit as can possibly be.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

18 hours ago, myata said:

Right. Those who cannot do, make and accomplish, choose to live in their fantasies, dreams, memories of glories long past. Good night dear... and do hope to not wake to major surprises (the evolution did not promise that to the dinosaurs though)

but there is not a single democracy on earth

there are only republics & monarchies

so it seems you are the one who is engaging in fantasy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, Dougie93 said:

but there is not a single democracy on earth

Are you talking to QM, in that alternative Universe?

4 hours ago, bcsapper said:

It's not that difficult...

Right, why would one need a brain of their own if somebody has done the job for them already?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, bcsapper said:

It's not that difficult...

"Full democracies are nations where civil liberties and fundamental political freedoms are not only respected but also reinforced by a political culture conducive to the thriving of democratic principles".

These nations have a valid system of governmental checks and balances: no (none),

an independent judiciary [questionable] whose decisions are enforced,

governments that function adequately [questionable: SNC Lavalin, Emergency measures],

and diverse and independent media [highly questionable: Covid, wokeism].

These nations have only limited problems in democratic functioning [serious problems].

Isn't mentioned in the definition but essential for being a full democracy: political choice of citizens [severely or maximally restricted], ability of citizens to influence and control their governments [next to none].

Edited by myata
Link to comment
Share on other sites

There’s an overwhelming sense that the public are not requiring the government to represent their values, but rather, the government seems to actively suppress the values of the public.  I hope that’s not really the case because that’s dystopia.  I do think we need a much more vociferous questioning of recent government policies on a slew of issues.  Somehow we ended up affirming 58 plus genders, assisted suicide for the mentally ill (mass murder?), and legal access to hard drugs.  We’re watching dangerous inhuman social experiments unfold.  I won’t even get into the fraught obsession with race.  What a mess, from pandemic emergency measures to this.

This news today:

But the most alarming endorsement is that the government of Canada should extend eligibility for MAID to include minors “deemed to have the requisite decision-making capacity.” For now, MAID should be restricted to mature minors whose death is reasonably foreseeable, the report said, “at least initially.”

National Post

Does any of this feel like evil to you?

Any echoes from the darker past?

Edited by Zeitgeist
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Democracy that is good and benevolent, granted by virtue and grace from above does not exist in reality. It is only a mirage, illusion a fairy tale. Every piece of democracy that is around, exists and works is created, and maintained by the citizens. Either citizens control, clean and keep their governments in check regularly, all the time; or the governments will begin to make citizens the way they think they should be. For their own good, how else and as always.

This choice is binary, either - or. If citizens won't own the government, it will try and attempt to own them. If you don't make, create one you'll get the other. That much is guaranteed by the logic of the time and evolution.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 We have what everyone calls democracy but if you examine it closely, you find it is full of holes and there is massive room for questioning the concept.  What kind of country one has depends on what the people believe.  Canada is a mish mash of beliefs and conflicting ideologies.  If it is a democracy, it is certainly flawed in many ways.  The word democracy is kind of deceptive in a way.  The word gives the impression that everything will be fair, moral, and honest.  In practice it is far from it.

As most immigration is from the third world, huge numbers of leftist supporters are coming to Canada.  The leftist ideology seems to appeal to these kind of people.  Government is supposed to solve all problems and take care of everyone.  What happened to individual initiative, hard work, and personal responsibility?

One would think if we had the perfect system, there would be no problems.  But the government the people elected has massive failures in many areas.  Less than 40% voted for the Liberals and as they are minority, much less than 40%.  Perhaps closer to one third.  Yet they are being propped up by the NDP who only received around 20% of the vote.  The NDP ideology is make the corporations pay and the corporations are greedy.  Profit is a dirty word to the NDP.  The main talking points of the NDP leaders are greedy corporations and profit is bad.  This is Communist ideology.  Canadians do not support his ideology but are fed a steady diet of it on the liberal leftist media.

Edited by blackbird
Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, myata said:

Are you talking to QM, in that alternative Universe ?

you invoke a "full democracy"

that is a state wherein the stakeholders vote on every single issue

that is the democracy of ancient Greece

no such states exist now

at most, you have representative government

America is not a democracy, America is a constitutional republic

Canada is not a democracy, Canada is a constitutional monarchy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

22 hours ago, OftenWrong said:

Unfortunately that doesn't work anymore, as for Canada the King is merely symbolic, a "figurehead". So it is not a Monarchy. It is Fellahin Society.

Post Democratic Zombie State

what you have in Canada now ; is too much democracy

you have a corrupt & inept elitist political class who do not uphold their oaths

instead they just track social media and make snap decisions based on what the mob says on Twitter today

that is the democracy of ancient Greece, which was a catastrophe that degenerated into endless civil war

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Unfortunately, your content contains terms that we do not allow. Please edit your content to remove the highlighted words below.
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Tell a friend

    Love Repolitics.com - Political Discussion Forums? Tell a friend!
  • Member Statistics

    • Total Members
      10,717
    • Most Online
      1,403

    Newest Member
    Watson Winnefred
    Joined
  • Recent Achievements

  • Recently Browsing

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...