Populism: Who Needs it?
CBC: 'To think the current populist wave has permanently missed Canada is to ignore the obvious ...'
Populism: Who Needs It?
Who even knows what it is?
I was waiting for a bus the other day along with a young woman who had lived and worked in various places including Edmonton. She told me that Edmonton was a scary place because of so much homelessness and drug addiction.
If you do a search for this (I recommend DuckDuckGo): "homeless people in edmonton alberta" you might end up bewildered by the number of publicly-funded organizations that insist they are working hard to end this horrific situation.
Here are two of them that don't seem to have shown much progress:
Edmonton's Plan to End Homelessness: This group has been operating for a decade without significant success, but, undaunted, they've recently updated their projections for the future.
They are connected with this organization: Homeward Trust, supported with multi-millions of dollars since 2007 by taxpayers both national and provincial.
Yet the problem persists:
TheStar: Homeless people in Edmonton are dying of overdoses at shockingly high rates — and officials aren’t sure why
The official conclusions are couched in rather corporate lingo, recommending better data collection, etc.
But here seems to be a serious clue to the problem:
What does a repetition of the words "sort of" mean in this context? Could it simply be too uncomfortable to just come out with the truth?
It's seems there's a buyer's market in downtown Edmonton; buildings going cheap because of a failed employment situation and a failure to properly address both the homelessness and the hopelessness, with gentrification taking over, and new homeowners with a strong voice, making demands that include not having to look at or deal with the consequences of unemployment and racism in the city where they've chosen to live.
The only really cogent assessment I see in the Star article comes from an Indigenous social worker who politely, almost hesitantly, suggested something that might work better than what's been done so far by apparently well-meaning help groups:
Right on, because, in a failing job market that produces homelessness, who do you think were most likely to get kicked to the curb?
But there's a bizarre counter-culture, it seems. Although there are reportedly low employment prospects for average Canadians and Indigenous peoples, corporations are campaigning for increased immigration. I'm not against immigration per se, especially when it's an act of justice for people living in war-torn countries due to the West's brutal king-of-the-castle mentality, but to crassly invite massive - selective - immigration solely for the sake of profits?
Goldy Hyder, CEO of The Business Council of Canada, which earlier proclaimed its intention to go International, has proudly spread out into the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada. You'll find plenty of glorious acronyms there: ABLAC ABAC PECC APEC
Basically, it's not people from war-torn places like Syria that they want to bring onboard. It's Asians. Jobs will be created that only they can fill, probably in technology-related fields.
It's called: "Century Initiative":
NatNewsWatch: Don't make election about immigration
From the "Century Initiative" website:
THOUGHT leadership? It's got to be "1984" when they come right out and say it! They are confident they can tell the public what to think. And they are probably, sadly, right about that.
*Pluralism: a social organization in which diversity of racial, religious, ethnic or cultural groups is tolerated.
Not necessarily welcomed. Not voted for. Not willed by the people.
The definition of "pluralism" doesn't include"prosperity", it seems rather to suggest a grudging acceptance. It might take quite a bit of "Thought Leadership" to accomplish that, because whose prosperity are we talking about? And do I really have to ask? Not likely the general population.
Imagine a huge population of "thought-led" clock punchers. Wow, that's the Canada we want, right?
How do we reconcile this with the results of the downturn in employment opportunities in Alberta? Not to mention that there's already a right wing uprising against immigration that's likely to become more determined and violent. Is there a government-funded service organization that can prevent civil war? I hope so, but more likely the military will be called in at the first hint of mass "thought" regression.
All of which makes Conservative Edmonton MP Michael Cooper look even more like a racist, right-wing plant that Scheer will have to work hard to tamp down and disguise during the lead-up to the election.
When you consider that both of Harper's former parliamentary side-kicks, Jason Kenny and John Baird, are as wide-mouthed again as they were when he was PM, it seems more and more apparent that Scheer is not entirely, if at all, the boss of the current operation.
I've reserved Harper's book at the library -- there seems to be some demand for it -- just to see what he advises regarding the reported trend toward "populism". If there's any meaning at all to that word, his apparent intention to rule by proxy suggests he's not against at least giving the impression he's all for it.
But Scheer doesn't have the charisma to evoke it. And Trudeau inspired it, but may well have soured it.
Today, it's really hard to tell the difference between populism (rule by a charismatic leader) and democracy (rule by the people), especially when the very words are tainted by the American bias against Chavez -- who was honestly loved for how he improved the life of the poor -- and the virtual myth of democracy in the West where elections are often won solely on personal appeal (Obama, Trudeau).
Stephen Harper appears to want to be enigmatic on the subject of populism:
NatPost excerpt from Harper's Book:
It appears that Harper reserves the right to pick and choose what populism means at any given point in time.
Worth noting is that John Baird left politics just before the election of Justin Trudeau, and resurfaced just as Canada was heading into another election year, and Alberta's extreme right wing was becoming more visible.
It was pretty extreme of him to publicly feather his own nest with the Saudis at Trudeau's expense.
CTV: Extremism on the rise in Alberta, first-of-its-kind report says
They're certainly making it look as if Alberta is a bomb about to explode, and that's going to scare the voters into opting for whatever candidate looks most able to fend off trouble. Maybe they'll think there is safety in numbers: Scheer, Baird, Kenny, Cooper and Harper all rolled into one Prime Minister?
Populism should be defined... but it's not.
5/7/2019 10:44:23 am
I've just come from reading your post about the pipeline:
I'd say "poverty" does depend on context.
5/7/2019 01:20:49 pm
Yeah, the great melting pot that Pierre Trudeau dreamed of, with government at the podium, waving the baton.
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