Saturday, September 6, 2014

Tragedy In The Commons

I know that I am hardly alone in sometimes thinking that the insights and observations of progressives have a Cassandra-like quality to them; we think we can see patterns auguring ill for our country and our democracy, but warnings are largely ignored by a quiescent or alienated proportion of the population, the latter so turned off by the cupidity and corruption that seems to abound in the political world that they have just disengaged and decided to pursue other aspects of life that seem more worthwhile.

One can argue that it has always been thus; others can, quite cogently, argue that the process of alienation has vastly accelerated under the Harper regime, the result of a cabal that has made an art out of vilification, dirty tricks and divisiveness as it relentlessly pursues its raison d'être, the retention of power for its own sake.

I have just started reading Tragedy in the Commons, written by Alison Loat and Michael MacMillan, who founded Samara, a non-profit devoted to strengthening democracy in Canada by improving political participation.

Here is a brief excerpt from it about the role of the MP as offered by a former Liberal:

The truth is: you're there to develop policy that is self-serving and beneficial to your party in order to keep you in power and get you re-elected...

That bald statement epitomizes the monumental task before those who seek a renewed democracy, one that offers both hope and the opportunity to feel a part of something larger than themselves, something truly worthwhile.

While I was intending this post as a lead-in to more commentary on how the Conservatives have so abjectly failed in the above regard, other duties summon me, so for now I will leave you with this brief video:


  1. It's a sad state of affairs, Lorne.

    1. It is time for all of us to reclaim the 'commons.' Owen. Perhaps electoral reform is the answer, as some suggest.