The Parallel Parliament

Glen Pearson

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Democracy in a Box

Posted on May 24, 2017

Those of us in the affluent West hold to the belief that certain political realities remain sacrosanct. Rule of law, political representation, will of the people, elections, civic duty – these have become so entrenched in our thoughts that we believe them immutable. And situated at the peak is that one great word that encompasses them all – democracy. For all its many flaws, it remains our preferred method of government. The problem is that none of that is certain anymore, as the decades have introduced complexities that confound even the most stable governments. When Alan Moore, in his V is for Vendetta, wrote that, “People shouldn’t be afraid of their government. Governments should be afraid of their people,” it was assumed that only…

Mine, Yours, Ours

Posted on May 17, 2017

Photo credit: Sasin Tipchai For all our talk concerning the ability for our communities to enjoy both prosperity and well-being we have proved remarkably one-sided in that approach by consistently allowing prosperity to become the benchmark for the welfare of our communities. Growth and all our rampant belief in its ability to provide a better future is quickly forcing us into a corner, where our desires are no longer affordable and our resources are rapidly dwindling in the process. What else did we expect? In a world where wealth moves ever upward and the planet comes closer to living on life-support, the results of our mad dash to material nirvana are evident for all who wish to see and acknowledge them. As the New…

Good Politics

Posted on May 9, 2017

This post can be found in its original on National Newswatch here. John Buchan was a Scottish novelist, historian and politician who embarked on these three careers at roughly the same time. His novel The Thirty-Nine Steps remains a classic. He also just happened to be Canada’s 15th Governor-General (1935-1940). A key to his long and diverse career is found in his autobiography: “Public life is regarded as the crown of a career, and to young men it is the worthiest of ambition. Politics is still the greatest and most honourable adventure.” I quoted this passage during a speech recently, only to be met with a baffled response. It wasn’t hard to see why: few look at politics in such lofty terms. In reality,…

“Human” Leadership

Posted on May 3, 2017

Sharad Vivek Sagar put the irony out there for all to consider: “If the UN has not failed in maintaining world peace or bilateral relations between nations, it has definitely not succeeded either.” From the beginning, the United Nations has had it proponents and detractors, but as the world becomes more infused with non-state actors like terrorist organizations, corporations, and large non-governmental organizations (NGOs), its work has grown increasingly complex and, at times, confounding. We require it now more than ever, yet its effectiveness remains in question.= It is perhaps for such a time, then, that new UN Secretary General António Guterres is best to lead the world body. His selection for the post wasn’t without controversy, but the amount of wisdom gained from…

  

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