I enjoy pretty much everything there is that has to do with the outdoors. Some of my most peaceful moments have been while walking through the forest, sitting on a beach, or boating (minus the loud engine). Accordingly I have a great respect for nature and enjoy learning about the plants and wildlife therein. My plan is to continue that learning process and hopefully enhance it by sharing what I learn. I intend for this blog to serve many purposes, but in the immediate future it will be a place for me, and hopefully others, to share ideas about reducing our individual impact on this planet, protecting wild spaces, and in general just to comment on the things we enjoy most in the great outdoors. I welcome all opinions as otherwise you cannot consider every aspect of a subject. However, I would ask that every opinion be expressed in a respectful way and considered with an open mind. Often there is no single right answer. Thanks.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Canadian Politics and Voting - Here we go again...

I have been struggling with whether or not to post anything political on my blog.  I am not a person who likes to shout my political opinions from the rooftops and I detest confrontational debates.  I have my reasons for my opinions and I would be happy to explain them and hear other peoples' opinions, but to participate in an aggressive debate is just not my style.  But, since my blog is not followed by thousands of people and comments are few and far between I figured what the hell.

Let's start with the leadership debate, which I attempted to watch a portion of last night.  First of all regardless of who I vote for I was not impressed that the Green Party was excluded and I happily signed the petition and sent an email expressing my disgust to the various media involved in the decision process.  Since they failed to rectify the situation I watched part of the debate on my computer from a Vancouver Sun link that was streaming it live with occasional comments from Elizabeth May.  Although my intentions were good I did not actually watch much as I kept walking away every time the leaders started talking over top of one another like small children, or presented their opinions in an overly rehearsed way.  To me it was a useless exercise.  The negative tone of politics today is a real turn off for me.  I would rather hear what a party plans to do for the country than constant criticism of what others are doing.  If you are going to point out a problem then you better follow up with your solution.  I long for a day when politicians can park their egos and turn off the political rhetoric long enough to find some common ground, formulate some policies that are based in compromise and at least get us moving forward.

Although I have a very negative impression of politics today I still drag myself out to vote every time we have a federal or provincial election (my record is not so impressive on the municipal front, but I pledge to do a better job of that).  Judging by voter turnout during the last few elections I am not the only one feeling rather discouraged by the options available.  I remember comments being made after the last election about a historically low voter turnout so I thought I would see what I could find that regard.  One site I found uses graphs to compare historical voter turnout since 1867 and breaks down the votes by party for the last two federal elections.  You can check it out at http://www.sfu.ca/~aheard/elections/historical-turnout.html
You might think that voting for the Green Party would be an obvious choice for someone who blogs about composting and recycling, enjoys hiking and all things nature, however, I have never voted Green in a federal election.  My perception of the Green Party up to now has been shaped by what I have heard from other people i.e. they do not have a real platform, all they stand for is legalizing marijuana, they would not know how to run a country, they are not a serious party, etc., etc.  However, given my passion for the environment I thought I should at least take a look at their website and see if there is more substance to their platform than what I have heard.  I also heard Elizabeth May, who is the Green Party candidate in my riding, speak during a radio interview and liked what I heard.

Over the last couple of weeks I have been a frequent visitor to the Green Party website trying to get an idea of what they stand for and how comprehensive their plans are.  I made it through a couple of sections of their Vision Green document, which is 132 pages and details their long term vision for Canada.  Today I read through their platform, which is a much more manageable 12 pages.  Do I 100% agree with everything in their platform?  No.  But it is a hell of a good start and I do like many of their ideas including those regarding forestry, food security, green energy and green jobs.  I also like the tone of their party, which promotes positive, productive politics instead of constant mudslinging.  This election I am determined to vote for something, rather than against something.

I would encourage anyone who is interested in making an educated choice in this federal election to include the Green Party Website as one their information resources.  Out of fairness, and the interest of informed decision making, here are the links to the other websites of the main federal political parties: Liberal Platform, NDP Platform, Conservative Platform, Bloc Quebecois.  Happy reading (try not to fall asleep) and please get out to vote on May 2.

1 comment:

  1. Well put my dear lady. I enjoyed reading this one. I think I recognized a couple of your perception shaping opinions from "other people". :-)