Saturday, April 7, 2007

The Voter's Declaration of Independence

What took Thomas Jefferson 17 days, took me about 4 hours. Though, in fairness, I *did* borrow a lot of his original work, and had I been writing by hand, the typos alone would have caused me to kill myself at the thought of starting over each time. :)

- ES

When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men (and women) are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Party loyalty, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such an arcane system, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Canadians; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former “party-centric” system of politics. The history of the present political parties within this Dominion is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny of Dogma over these citizens. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

They have refused to Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good, in favour of inferior legislation based on dogmatic political views, so that they can then trumpet themselves as “champions of the people”, more intelligent, compassionate, or educated than their opposing parties.

They have governed not to provide us with good government, but rather to ensure that they secure re-election. In this way and many others, then, they serve not the people whom have elected them, but rather themselves and their own personal goals.

They have opposed not on the grounds that they have better ideas and legislation to present, but only because they fear the result of admitting a governing party’s ideas as valid and worthy of approval.

They have run campaigns not on issues and their own party’s stance on the issues of the day, but rather on the youthful indiscretions, habits, sexual preference, religion, or personal choices of their opponent. In this way they ensure both that they themselves will be elected at the expense of the other, and that the citizens will instead of the best representative be given a representative for whom scruples and honesty are foreign.

They have caused elections to happen not for the purpose of improving the lives of the citizens of this nation, but rather to seize more power for themselves, at the cost of others.

They have insisted, for the retention of power and prestige, that elected party members represent the views of the party rather than the views of those whom have elected the representative in the first place. As result, instead of loosely-affiliated groups of representatives with similar views whose votes reflect the will of their constituents, instead we have parties who demand loyalty to the views of a small group of strategists, to the detriment of the citizen and his or her franchise.

They have introduced issues most controversial and divisive not for public discussion, but rather for partisan means.

They have obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing their Assent to Laws most sensible, again on the basis of “losing face” with the public.

They have put the people who contribute time and, especially, funding to their campaigns ahead of the average citizen, to whom their loyalty should and must lie without regard for that citizen’s voting preference.

They have spent monies taxed from the people to lie to the people, in hopes that the people will reward them with further mandates for power.

They have risked the lives of our soldiers, both through action and inaction, for partisan purposes.

They have made the citizen whom wishes to run independent from them, on his own merits, waver in his intent due to lack of funding, lack of organization, and insidious threats of mischaracterization.

They have forgotten that the 308 votes in the House of Commons, or however many votes are cast among those elected in Provincial Parliaments, are the sacred franchises of those men and women whom elected them in the first place – rather, they consider them to be votes belonging to the party, to spend as political capital however it wishes, for whatever means.

They have conspired against proposals to improve our democratic process, for fear that their hold on personal power might be thus diminished.

They have abdicated their responsibility to the average citizen, in favour of donors or groups that add to their power and prestige.

They have ignored their responsibility to the First Nations of this land, using them as pawns in a political chess match instead of honouring them as victims of a terrible injustice.

They have served, rather than as the greatest example of our civilized debate, as the poorest. Rather than the greatest example of our civilized discourse, as the poorest. And rather than as the best model for our children’s behaviour, as some of the worst.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A band of Princes, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a band of Tyrants, is unfit to be rulers of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our elected representatives. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislatures to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our values and quality of life. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common citizenship to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity, unable to hear over the incessant voices of the political party: power, and avarice.

We, therefore, the citizens of Canada, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of this Nation, solemnly publish and declare, That these united people are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent with their political allegiance and with their franchise, that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the political parties which are destroying our trust in government, and that all political connection between the people and the parties, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent voters, they have full Power to elect people of good conscience and character, to the ends of freeing the voters of this land from the dictatorship of the leadership of those parties that have so transgressed as described above. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

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