[oclug] Politics and Linux / Open Source
Francis J. A. Pinteric
linuxdoctor at linuxdoctor.biz
Thu Jun 3 11:07:23 EDT 2004
On Thu, 3 Jun 2004 08:30:17 -0400
Vic Gedris <vic at gedris.org> wrote:
> Hoping this thread stays on-topic... ;-)
By its very nature, perhaps his subject may actually be better suited to
the"oclug-offopic list.";-) I've CC'd this over there for people who
want to follow up on this.
> I'm starting to read up on federal election platforms, and noticed
> that the Green party has an official position on Open Source software.
> that this is the only issue people should look at during an election,
> but it's interesting to see. I wonder if the other parties have any
Are you a member or supporter of the Green Party yourself? Myself, I
have been a life long member of the Liberal Party until Paul Martin
became leader. For the first time in my life I am looking at voting for
As for the Green Party platform, their position on OSS is of course
commendable, but I wouldn't vote for them based on any single issue.
It's their overall platform that is important to me.
Upon looking at their platform, they say many good things that I
would indeed support, but there are really two issues that causes me to
think twice about supporting them. These are the issues of democracy
The Green Party would support the growing fad of increased democracy
within the Canadian political system. To this end they support
proportional representation as a means to that end. In my view, this
growing trend towards more democracy is the result of a failure of
leadership. Democracy simply does not work and no country that has a
proportionally representative legislature has a stable government.
Political parties are preoccupied by opinion polls and not the business
of government. That requires leadership and there is none in Canada
The second issue that would cause me to think twice is their stand on
immigration. Their position is actually quite reasonable compared to the
NDP who would behave as if there was no border or the Conservatives
(sic) who would do whatever their political masters in the US told them
to do. However, they continue to perpetuate the old myth that "Canada is
a nation of immigrants." That is in fact false. Only a minority of
Canadians are actually immigrants. In fact, the statistics on the number
of Canadians are inflated because they actually count people with
"Landed Immigrant Status" as an immigrant, which is wrong. Immigrants
are Canadian citizens who were born in another country.
The problem with labelling ourselves as a "country of immigrants" is
that it devalues the vast majority of Canadians who are not. It says to
Canadians that they have no culture other than the one that their
parents or grandparents left behind. It discourages native Canadians
from promoting their own uniquely Canadian culture in favour of the
culture of foreigner. In fact, most Canadians do not even recognize that
Canada does have a culture all its own.
Canadian immigration policy should first and foremost be one that
encourages people to come to Canada who want to be Canadians. We must
actively discourage "economic migrants" that so plagues Europe where
hoardes of displaced people go from country to country shopping for the
best government handouts, or people who come to Canada only because they
were turned down by the US. I know quite a number of those kind of
people who are in Canada only until they can qualify to get into the US
(at Canadians' expense, of course).
Further to that, I would stop granting "landed immigrant status" to
refugees as a matter of course. In fact, Canada must work hard in order
to help bring about conditions in those countries where the refugees
come from so that they can go back. Canada must get out of the peace
*keeping* business and into the peace *making* business.
As for the rest, anybody who immigrates to Canada must become a citizen
within three years or they should be shipped back. The practice of
bringing over members of a person's extended family will cease, or
Overall, I am impressed with the platform of the Green Party with those
two notable exceptions. I will look at it very carefully. I have decided
that I will not vote Liberal this time around, thanks to Paul Martin,
and at this point I am leaning heavily towards spoiling my ballot.
Just to be clear, the issues that the press and opposition parties are
wanting to focus on, notably the various scandals plaguing the Liberals,
are not an issue for me. Politics is by its very nature a corrupt
practice and as Lord Acton reminded us almost two hundred years ago,
power corrupts. Which ever party comes in will end up in just as much
doo-doo, as did the corrupt Mulroney Conservatives when they were
finally turfed out of office.
Mediocre is just another word for being normal.
Tired of `netiquette'? Fed up with endless discussion of
what is '[OT]'? Linux, Free/Open Source discussion without
the "political correctness:" http://linuxdoctor.dyndns.org/list.html
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