While not attempting to emulate the great man, Dr Swift, perhaps we need some radical changes to the way government is conducted in most Western countries. I refer in particular to so-called emergency powers which governments increasingly arrogate to themselves on the flimsiest of pretexts.
Granted that at the outset nobody knew exactly how dangerous covid might turn out to be, after a couple of months it was painfully obvious that it was not going to be the New Black Death. But, no matter. Governments had decided that crushing civil liberties and destroying our economies, churches, social clubs, locking up healthy people, and skillfully wiping out large numbers of unfortunate elderly in care homes was the best way to stop a virus spreading.
Even so, one might have thought that the lockdown Mania would have lessened after experience around the world showed that it does not work and that masks are a waste of time too.
But no, no matter the evidence, politicians love being aspiring tyrants and any excuse will do. Since “the War on Terror” and “national security” are wearing a bit thin, what about “public health”? So all the way from Dear Leader, Kim Just-In, and the Tool who does Opposition simulations, and Fran Lego, El Presidente in the DPRQ, down to the most squalid city councilors thirsting for a dose of power to bash free enterprise and our liberties and freedoms; they all glommed onto the Mania.
The bullying, the contemptible lies, the arrogance of rash and ignorant power, have destroyed whatever remaining credibility these creatures once possessed. Only a clean sweep of our current political class can do lasting good.
It will take years to fully understand what untold damage these ghastly little men (and women) have done. We require some changes to the polity to ensure that it does not happen again. After all, justifying the suppression of liberties in the name of “public health”, then, in the future, public health would become the pretext and suppression of liberties the end.
As Edmund Burke noted in Reflections on the Revolution in France…
Justifying perfidy and murder for public benefit, public benefit would soon become the pretext, and perfidy and murder the end, until rapacity, malice, revenge, and fear more dreadful than revenge could satiate their insatiable appetites. Such must be the consequences of losing, in the splendor of these triumphs of the rights of men, all natural sense of wrong and right.
How little things change.
I have a Modest Proposal—one among many.
I will deal with emergency powers first. Emergency powers may sometimes be required by governments, but only in extreme circumstances. New Acts of Parliament and legislation must be introduced to limit the powers of governments. These constraints must accomplish the following:
1. In order to propose emergency powers, the government must present to the legislature all background information, the reasons for requiring these powers, and the ends these powers should serve.
2. Any invocation of emergency powers by the federal (or any provincial) government shall require a vote of the full legislature and be passed by a two-thirds majority.
3. All emergency powers shall lapse after two weeks, automatically.
4. If the government wishes to extend those powers, a further vote shall be taken in the full legislature and shall again require a two-thirds majority.
5. All the above be written into Acts of Parliament that will require new legislation to change in any way.
Since Maxime Bernier seems to be the only politician in Canada with a backbone and common sense, maybe the People’s Party might consider some of these modest proposals for their Party Platform.