Three letters in the Jan. 3 Times Colonist decry the breakdown of our parliamentary democracy and propose changes by tinkering with the electoral system. None of these will solve our problems.
To overcome the many failures of our current governments, federal and provincial, we must eliminate the influence and ideological control of political parties by evolving a non-partisan system. The Northwest Territories is governed this way and functions well by consensus rather than confrontation.
A legislature made up of non-partisan elected representatives has as its first priorities the well-being of the whole country or province and their constituency, achieved in open debate without any obligation to a directed outcome or particular economic ideology. Electors vote for the nominee in their constituency felt to best represent the broader needs and wishes, and then their own. These representatives first elect a speaker from among the members, then elect a cabinet. Any member may introduce legislation and it may be debated and voted on, with no whipped votes.
Canada really needs to take a step back and find a better way. Changing only the system of voting won’t do it — the vested interests of our current partisan system are too confining.
© Copyright 2013