Green Island Letters

Original article: Hepburn: Rae's 'road map' is a map to nowhere
(Commentary by B Hepburn, Toronto Star, Nov 9 2011)


- Bob Rae giving a talk to the Economic Club of Canada about 'renewing the Liberals'. I guess it's just hopeless naivete that just wants to believe there are some decent, honest people in the system who really want to do well - I know, you can have a chuckle, but I guess I'm like the old guy Diogenes or something, endlessly looking for just one, just one honest politician. Anyway, reading this story, and a couple of others at the same time, about Rae's talk at the Economic Club, just inspired a short missive to he and his comrades

Mr Rae et al,
Reading about your speech to the Economic Club of Canada in the Star a couple of days ago, and reading some other commentary about what you are doing and saying these days, I got inspired to write a bit about what I think you and your fellow Liberals might do, if you are really interested in seeing the Liberals as once again the party of the people of Canada. It's pretty clear that 'same old same old' isn't a good approach these days, and there don't seem to be many useful ideas out there coming from 'the ranks'. Perhaps I can help, from outside the box where I tend to spend a lot of time - out here, I don't have that 'can't see the forest for the trees' problem that a lot of people who have spent their lives immersed in the system seem to be struggling with, running around in circles rearranging deck chairs trying to look busy, putting new paint on them and calling them new chairs, etc. That sort of thing worked for awhile, but even lazy, not overly-interested citizens who are trying to give you some breaks get tired of going nowhere good after awhile and listening to the same platitudes again and again, as we are seeing these days of increasing Canadian withdrawal from the political process and same-old-same-old.

What the Liberal party, like every other party these days, has forgotten, or just tossed aside, over the last 20-30 years of 'the market is king!!!' insanity that has overtaken the governments of the world, is the idea of a 'social contract' that has underlain the whole system of 'party politics' and governance in western democracies at least since the last great capitalist market disaster, the crash of 29 caused by the same kind of unregulation we have seen the last couple of decades of increasing 'market' dominance and catering to the demands of an ever more vocal and living-in-wonderland unreality "investors", and the following 'great depression', and then WWII, following which the citizens who survived these capitalist-initiated disasters became very unhappy with the rulers who allowed these things to happen, and demanded some better behavior from the people they elected - names like Douglas, Diefenbaker and Trudeau come to mind, all presently, of course, hated with a passion for their devotion to 'the people' by the current rulers, the wouldbe new feudalists, as much as they were loved by 'the people' of their times for believing in, and fighting for, the dream of a just and good society for all of us, not just the rapacious, moral-free few.

The essential feature of the unwritten social contract that was in place for those few decades, and understood at some level by most people, was that although we live in a kind of 'pseudo-democracy', wherein we do indeed get to elect 'representatives' who supposedly speak for their constituents and 'run' the country, in a generally unspoken reality there is a wealthy elite who, through their wealth and upper class tradition going back generations, have an influential and usually decisive voice in how the country is actually run. The 'social contract', however, demanded by the people and acceded to by the ruling class, even if never actually articulated or written down anywhere because, I suppose, nobody wants to acknowledge such a ruling class in a 'democracy', says, or said, that in return for the continued acceptance of the people for this arrangement, and that ruling class, those who actually guide the direction of the country over and above the elected politicians will, in our modern, progressive democracy, treat the people with some consideration, as we saw in the decades immediatley following the final great disaster of WWII with the initiation of many things to give the people a better life, such as unemployment insurance, old age pensions, medicare, widespread access to 'higher education', decent incomes, etc etc. During the last 30-40 years of neocon ascendency, beginning in the 70s, however, the rulers, through other political leaders not high in public popularity but beloved of the market for their devotion to slashing social programs and tax cutting such as Mulroney-Wilson, Chretien-Martin and Harper-Flaherty, have apparently decided to terminate that unwritten contract, and basically say 'to hell with the people', as we move ever closer to a system less like Trudeau's Just Society, and more like the days of robber barons and company towns, or even an earlier feudal system of quite open lords ruling by simple power and claiming the wealth of the country as their right, and powerless, impoverished, passive peasants accepting their hard and insecure lives, and doing as they are told or facing the violent consequences.

And a central part of the establishment of this new order of banker lords and citizen serfs, the major implementation tool, aside from the full cooperation of the media, of course, also owned by the same people who wield major influence behind the scenes with our government, has been the cooptation of the leadership of both mainstream parties in Canada by 'big business' interests, so no matter who the people voted or vote for, the implementation of this new one-sided social contract would be continued - since Mulroney, it has not mattered who gets elected, federally or provincially, the corporate agenda carries on apace - slashing the social programs and policies of all sorts which enabled the rise of the great democratic and prosperous middle class that developed following the war, and implementing investor-favoring, and average-citizen-impoverishing, policies such as cutting corporate taxes and otherwise giving more money and power to those wealthy elite who actually run the country, and complaining there is no money for health care, or education, or pensions, or after school activities, etc etc etc etc - the many programs that built the great progressive middle class that is the very heart of a strong democracy, now being decimated as we mostly passively, but not without anger, look on helplessly.

These reversals could not just be imposed on an aware and democratic citizenry, of course, without some excuse, and the excuse for these actions over the last 25+ years has been primarily the "national debt", as similar debts are the excuse for the 'austerity' programs attacking democracy over the entire western world today. The problem is that these are all entirely fraudulent and unnecessary debts - I will not take the time to explain this in detail in a short letter which I suspect nobody is going to pay attention to anyway, but basically the fraud being perpetrated is that "our" money, which is in essence nothing more than an accounting system which should be managed by a *democratic* government for the benefit of all citizens, has been morphed into a debt-slavery system, and turned over to privately owned businesses (banks) whose *sole* concern is maximizing their own profits and incomes, and power, and have been using this money-creation power, in collusion with cooperative governments and media, to accrue these completely unnecessary debts in the name of the people of Canada and other countries, and then use those debts and the endless 'service charges' required to attack the progressive, democracy-enhancing social structure that had been developed following the war. It need not be so, there is more than enough money to pay for everything we want and need, if we just stop this endless parasitic drain to those who already have more money than they could ever use - as I explain in the essay What Happened , if anyone is truly interested in what is happening here in terms of the money supply situation.

Few people understand what is going on with the money supply scam, although it would seem to be an 'undeniable inference' that the upper echelons of the major parties (and media) must know about this, but it is obvious there is an ever growing number of average people becoming very unhappy with what they do understand is an attack on their very democracy and a growing reluctance to accept the 'new feudalist world order' being imposed on them very much against their will - things like voter participation rates barely over 50% even in national elections is one sign of this, and there are many others, the most recent being the widespread 'Occupy' movements, which may have no officially stated goals, but are expressing some very obvious and deep unhappiness with the way things are currently being run, in terms of the economy to which everything is related.

If you and the Liberals are serious about getting your party more popular, Mr Rae et al, and taking a step or two towards re-establishing an acceptable and once-again workable social contract between the wealthy elite and their privilege and the majority of the country's citizens, you will separate yourself and your party from the corporate ruling class currently running the country, and make it clear that you strongly stand for a more fair and equitable country, a country where we do understand we have a 'ruling class', and are willing to accept their 'right' to generally run the country as in earlier years - as long as they keep their greed and hubris under some control, and understand that at the end of the day, they rule only at the pleasure of 'we the people', and 'we the people' are not farm animals who exist only as consumers and workers, and whose wellbeing is of no concern. They are obviously forgetting the lessons of history - when you push the people too far, you get revolutions. Think Russia and France for some reality checks of what happens when the ruling elite get too greedy for their own pleasures and too dismissive of the needs and rights of the people.

Your only path, as far as I can see, if you wish to regain some legitimacy as a party of the people in the eyes of Canadians, is to put some meat in the oft-used but equally oft empty idea of 'speaking truth to power' - in our current situation, the only 'truth' that is going to save you, and your party, and our country for that matter, is having the guts to openly speak up and expose and challenge the current supremacy of the banks and their owners in Canada in terms of controlling government policy for their own benefit, and educate people about what is going on with the money supply scam/fraud here, and how a New Liberal Party, acknowledging its great perfidy and error in selling out to the banking interests over the last 40 years and coming back from the wilderness of the New Mordor Movement to the fold of the people of Canada, will stand up to the banking-money power, and take back the sovereign right to create and control *our* money in the name of the people of Canada, and re-establish some 'this far and no further' bounds on the activities of the elite who run the country.

You might also show the people of Canada that you understand that the democratic process here has been seriously degraded as the banks and elite have usurped the entire system, and indicate that another priority will be a *true* democratic renewal of some sort. Not 'allowing more free votes' or 'demanding better decorum' - these are more of the 'same old same old' that people understand are much noise with little use. A return to some form of meaningful democracy would have to include things like having MPs represent the people who elected them, rather than the parties they are associated with, and be required to vote for the people of their ridings rather than their party when important issues are being decided - another reason for the ever decreasing voter turnout is the fact that most things the governments are getting up to - enabled by the MPs who continually vote, overall, for things opposed by most Canadians, and whatever excuses you make for this, it is very obviously not democratic. Also, although the party system needs to be replaced, as long as we are going to have parties in Canada, it is obvious that some form of PR is also required, which will put a stop to a party with less than 40% support from those people who still vote winding up with a majority government, and other absurdities the FPTP voting system leads to. If you can make the people believe you are serious about these kinds of *real* and meaningful democratic reform, again, you have a chance to regain their trust.

It would be a long and difficult road, Mr Rae et al, most people of Canada place little trust in anything any politician says any more, with good cause after the last 30 years of every party and politician joyfully jumping aboard the New Feudalist bandwagon and dismantling our country against the wishes of most of us, but it is, I suspect, possible, if you actually make an honest decision to do this, and start being honest and open about what has been going on the last 30 years, as we do need a government, we want a better option than we have been offered in recent years, and no other major party or politician are doing any of these things, including any from the current NDP who have joined the capitalist bandwagon in recent years and have become just another 'capitalist light' party. But it is what a growing majority of the people of Canada, and the world, are looking for - someone to lead them in their struggle to turn back this great capitalist beast that has become truly insane with the hubris of almost unlimited power and is threatening everything our ancestors fought for hundreds of years to achieve. Platitudes won't cut it any more, we've come from 'fooling most of the people most of the time' to 'barely enough of the people to validate the system every few years', with things not looking to improve in the near future, and only some real indications that someone, such as you and a (truly) renewed Liberal party, are actually willing to stand up to the elite rulers, the insane out-of-control capitalist juggernaut rampaging through the country and world, those who control the money, and tell them 'this far and no farther!' (and that line, of course, will not be where it is at the present time, or even near, but somewhat closer to the middle where it was 50 years ago in terms of sharing power to meet the desires of *both* "the people" and the elite who actually decide what is going to happen - during the last few decades the rulers have gone far, far over any acceptable line, and if they want to regain some legitimacy, they are going to have to accept that they have done this, and back off, a lot, and accept the right of the people to decent lives, and limitations on their own hubris and greed) - and return to the kind of prosperous-for-all country the politicians of the 50s and 60s and into the 70s were shaping. Only then will we have a chance to prevent our descent into some very dismal times, of open class warfare and bloody revolutions as the peasants once again tell the rulers that 'we deserve to rule!' arrogance and 'let them eat cake' is not a workable option.

The people of Canada have had enough. Somebody will come along soon to lead in the fight against the corporate powers, and if not you and your Libs, then you will continue your slow slide to fading away to nothing.

It is truly a once in a lifetime opportunity, Mr Rae et al. I very much suspect what I write here will fall on deaf ears, as I suspect you are all well aware of the great deception and betrayal you are participating in that I write of, and the talk about the 'rebirth' of the Liberal party is just part of the great sham (and shame) of our 'spectacle society' as we approach the final days of democracy and sanity in the western world - but in case there are some honest ones among you who really wonder what is happening, and what you can do to save us all - you might find some answers here, and the soul-searching it is meant to inspire in any honest politicians among you.

You do have an opportunity to be truly great, as the party *of* the people of a new Canada, if you have anyone around with some true vision and courage, who truly wants to work for the people of Canada rather than the New World Order new feudalists.

New paint, no matter how pretty, on the same old machine is not going to work this time. You have a great opportunity here to rise from the ashes of your recent disaster, and actually go down in history and save the country.

Carpe diem. Or others will.

Dave Patterson
Toronto, Hastings, PEI, Thailand
and Green Island

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