Chapter 1

IS DEMOCRACY IMPORTANT?

Personally I think that democracy is VERY important. I think that if Canada had more democracy, we’d have a better country and Canada would be more ‘OUR’ country.

By ‘our’ country, I mean Canada would be more what WE CANADIANS want to build and create.  Instead we have something that has been ‘imposed’ on us by the small elite that runs our country, and what we Canadians want counts for nothing. What ‘they’ want seems to be poverty and homelessness, a polluted food supply, a health care system that doesn’t provide good health but does provide lots of corporate profit, and so on.

Think of the kinds of things YOU want for our country. Think of the things your friends and family and workmates want. In a real democracy, what we want would count for something. But Canada isn’t a real democracy, so what we Canadians want is irrelevant. The only thing that really matters is what the richest and most powerful want.

UNFORTUNATELY …Canada is not being controlled by ‘We The People Who Live Here … Canada is being controlled by ‘The Corporations That Live Here’. CANADA IS NO LONGER A DEMOCRACY, AND THIS IS A PROBLEM THAT WE HAVE GOT TO FIX.

FOR EXAMPLE: Our health care system is now largely run By Corporate Canada, for the benefit OF Corporate Canada. The main goal of our health care system is NOT the health of the people of Canada. The main goals of our health care system seem to be Privatization and Corporate Profit. Is that what we Canadians want? Well it doesn’t really matter what we want, does it?

If OUR HEALTH was the main goal of our health care system, then it would be a much different ‘system’ than it now is …What we have now is a DISEASE TREATMENT system that directs huge amounts of our money at ‘treating symptoms’ and often making them worse … but directs almost no money towards BUILDING GOOD HEALTH.

Why doesn’t our Health Care System direct more of the huge amounts of money it has towards building better health for Canadians? I assume it’s because Corporate Canada doesn’t make much money from good health, but they make fortunes from sickness.

If we want to build good health in Canada, we could start by taking some of the billions of dollars we give to the drug companies, and use that money to reduce poverty and homelessness. From what the experts say, reducing income inequality is probably The Number One Best Thing we could do to improve public health. AND DOING THIS WILL REDUCE OUR TOTAL HEALTH CARE COSTS … because there would be less illness.

But of course our governments are in the business of Creating Poverty – not getting rid of it. And poverty leads to disease which is ‘good for business’.

AND if we wanted to build good health for all Canadians … we might also want to clean up our food supply, and better regulate the food corporations so that it isn’t so damn easy for them to poison us and our families.

If we spent a fraction of the money advertising good food that THEY spend advertising junk food, this would be a Much Healthier Country and we would be Much Healthier People. And wouldn’t that be nice?

Why doesn’t our Health Care System devote more of its energies towards Building Health??? Why does our health care system seem to put corporate profit before people’s health?

Well if those are the questions, the answers are simple. The Corporations control our politicians and own our media. So the politicians make the rules that ruin the system, and the media makes sure we citizens have no idea of what’s going on.

We can, if we want, build a Health Care System whose main job is taking care of us … not maximizing corporate profit. But first we need a free press, and we need some democracy, because we have no chance of success as long as Corporate Canada owns all the big media, and controls our politicians and our governments.

WE are supposed to control the politicians … NOT THEM !

We can have a much better health care system than what they are giving us now. But first we have to have a media that tells us the truth and we need a political system that puts some real power in the hands of the Canadian people so that we can actually GET what we WANT.

And this health care mess is only one example of the price we are paying. Here are a few more examples …

We see the deliberate creation of homelessness and poverty because that’s what Corporate Canada wants. We see our environment being polluted and destroyed so that corporations can ‘maximize profit’. Our governments have deliberately put themselves in debt by Reducing Taxes on the Richest People and Biggest Corporations while raising taxes and costs for all of the rest of us. And of course WE will have to pay back the debts that THEY created … because that’s how their little plan works.

And then these politicians tell us that in order to ‘pay off the debt’ the poorest and weakest will be made homeless … and those a step above will live in poverty, and millions more will be deep in debt and there won’t be enough money for public schools and people will have to suffer and wait for a simple operation that could maybe help them …and on and on. So the politicians cut taxes for the richest and force the rest of us to pay for those tax cuts. And the media never tells us the simple truth that WE are being forced to give OUR money to the 1%.

Debt … Poverty … Homelessness … Pollution … Stress … Bad Health … Cancer …. THESE ARE SOME OF THE PRICES WE ARE PAYING FOR HAVING LOST OUR DEMOCRACY. WE CAN DO BETTER. WE CAN BUILD SOMETHING BETTER FOR OURSELVES … IF WE HAD MORE DEMOCRACY would we choose to continue giving our wealth to the 1% year after year after year? IF WE HAD MORE DEMOCRACY would we continue sending our jobs overseas? IF WE HAD MORE DEMOCRACY would we continue creating homelessness even though it’s cheaper to actually give people a real place to live? IF WE HAD MORE DEMOCRACY would we continue to poison and pollute ourselves and our children so corporations can make ever MORE profit?

THE QUESTION IS ‘WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO ABOUT IT?’ AND THE ANSWER IS THAT WE HAVE TO BUILD MORE DEMOCRACY IN CANADA AND WE HAVE TO BUILD A FREE PRESS IN CANADA.

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