The Parallel Parliament

Glen Pearson

Posts tagged “democracy

Christmas and Trust

Posted on December 14, 2018

Living in a more jaded world, where things no longer feel as secure and where the news feels predominately negative, has magnified the loss of trust in our generation.  We see institutions as failing us.  Relationships lie in ruins.  People become undependable.  It leads many to agree with researchers who say that trust is a dying commodity. Except that it’s not. Humanity is still capable of great trust and faith; it’s just that such things become lost in the din of dysfunction. We still count on friends, trust our workmates to get the job done and believe most of those around us will remain with us when tough times descend.  And that goes for our faith in institutions as well.  We count on our banks or credit unions to safely keep and…

Is It This or That?

Posted on November 6, 2018

The American midterms today will be just another reminder of democracy’s strong tendency to be overly concerned over what people believe instead of what is true, to be lulled into being persuaded by perception rather than reality. Millennia ago, even Plato warned against the propensity to permit persuasion to overshadow the problem of knowledge. The distinction between blind belief and knowledge has only become more blurred  in the social media era. Take a citizenry, especially of the mass-consumer and tech savvy variety, and the potential is huge for fabrication, half-truths, misnomers, outright lies, and innuendo. While such things remain a temptation in fields like advertising, it is now a reality that politics excels at it. Why? Because such perpetrators know we are vulnerable to…

Voices But No Voice

Posted on October 7, 2018

It wasn’t all that long ago when people believed the world was coming together, forming one community premised on human rights, equality, self-determination and the right of every voice to be heard. Helping all that along were technological advancements – economical transportation, the internet, cellphones and social media. But something happened along the way, to the point where it seems most now believe the world is coming apart and the tech tools have just as much alienated us from one another as they have helped us understand one another better. We no longer know what to make of our world. With more money than ever in its history, more exposure to other cultures and ideas, and global communications now possible in a millisecond, we…

Sunny Ways? It’s Up To Us

Posted on September 26, 2018

A lot has changed in the three years since Justin Trudeau’s government came to power, promising to deliver on the “sunny ways” he promoted during the campaign.  A few big things got in the way – a court ruling on Trans Mountain pipeline, struggles with the provinces, including the Doug Ford victory, carbon pricing troubles, Maxime Bernier, and, inevitably, Donald Trump – leaving Trudeau’s re-election chances a year from now in the “unsure” category. The promises of a brighter day now seem almost passéin the turmoil of recent years. But maybe not. Gradually, perhaps inevitably, an increasingly number of citizens in this country, America and Europe are casting a cautious eye on all the chaos fulminating from identity politics, an inflammatory social media, hyper-partisanship, and the…

Capitalism in the Crosshairs

Posted on August 28, 2018

In the midst of what was perhaps Donald Trump’s worst week of his presidency emerged a Gallup poll whose findings got lost in all the political intrigue.  To quote the poll directly: “The major change among Democrats has been a less upbeat attitude toward capitalism, dropping to 47 percent positive this year — lower than in any of the three previous measures.  In contrast, 57 percent of Democrats have a positive view of socialism.” This is significant when you think about it.  It’s the first time in over a decade that the favourable view of Democrats concerning capitalism has dipped below 50 percent – lower even than the pessimism that followed the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis and Wall Street bailouts. To emphasize…

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