Sunday, October 27, 2013

Oct. 27: A Sunday Sermonette - sort of -

- but we won't be having any pancake breakfast or pie sale, so it isn't a religious sermonette.

I notice, too, that readership is up today. That's because yesterday was a nice day. Today is a stinker. (That just goes to show how writing a blog can make one cynical.)
But let's talk about law and order. That's been a popular term in discussion lately. We gotta have law and order. We gotta put down violence and disobedience.  Well, yes - sometimes.

There's nothing inherently good in law and order. It simply refers to a society which has laws and which enforces them. That sounds good to you?  Well, you would have loved Stalin's Soviet Union. Stalin made the law. And he kept order with secret police who put people in work camps with no charge or trial. They simply disappeared.

The US is big on law and order. The US has more secret police than Stalin did. And Obama can imprison and even assassinate people with no charge or trial. And he can arbirtrarily submit people, Americans or foreigners, to torture. He does it, too, in the US and all over the world.

In the US, police have such wide powers to enforce the law that they can confiscate private property "on suspicion", and then sell it to anybody they like. In a recent case, police were following a man was was suspected of having marijuana on him. The man went into a diner for a cup of coffee. Police followed hm, then arrested an searched him , finding a couple of marijuana cigarettes in his pocket. Then, with no evidence whatever of any connection between their prisoner and the owner of the diner, they informed the owner they were confiscating his shop, and selling it - "on suspicion".

Now, that's law and order as practiced in dictatorship and in countries, like the US, that have ceased to be democracies. Law and order societies like that usually don't last long. And US leaders know that. That's why police forces have been militarized in weapons and methods - to fight the American people.

Law and order have to be enforced, of course, by violence. But as law and order beccome increasingly harsh, they cannot maintain the level of violence needed to restrain an angry population.

Mind you, the fall of the dictatorship doesn't just automatically fix things. China, under its version democracy, is a dictatoship almost as thorouhgly as Mao's. And Putin of Russia is nobody's poster boy for   democracy.

The form of law and order that seems to work best is that under a real democracy. This means in a system in which the people are involved enough to be informed about what is going on, in which the government is answerable to the people for what it does in honestly informing people about what it is doing.

Alas! New Brunswick comes not even close.

In the first place, corporate leaders, especially Irving, openly interfere in the workings of government. It is no secret, for example,  that corporate bosses chose the official advisors for the minister of finance.

Corporate bosses held a province-wide meeting (they chose who would attend) to plan the economic future of New Brunswick. That's pretty damned arrogant. Why should they get a special voice on our economic future? Corporate leaders have no right to play any role in government except the right that all of us have, to vote for the candidates of our choice.

They are not in partnership with government any more than you and I are.

But in New Brunswick, they openly run the government. The Liberal and Conservative parties are farces. New Brunswick is not a democracy. It's a dictatorship only slightly disguised by pretending that either of those parties actually runs the government.

Then there is the question of the population being adequately informed so they can make intelligent choices. That simply doesn't happen in New Brunswick.

The Liberals and Conservatives lie. They hide information. They manipulate. The minister of something (rexources, I think) said the government had met with native peoples 15 times to give information and to discuss shale gas.

Only an utter fool could believe that.

They gave native peoples information? Then why  the hell didn't they give it to us? They met to discuss with us? Sure. They killed Dr. Cleary's report - with the help of the Irving press which garbled it. Then they hired a crooked academic to cover and pretend there was some respectability to developing shale gas.

That's where dictatorships start to break down. That's where our dictatorship started to break down. That's when native peoples blockaded a road.

There was voilence. Of course. At this point, violence will pop up on both sides - from a citizenry that has  been lied to - and from a government determined to go on lying. And at this level the dictatorship always wins because it has a far greater capacity for violence.

But a dictatorship, no matter how powerful it looks, is always on the edge of a collapse. There is probably no more severe dictatorship in the world than that of Saudi Arabia - but as Gwynne Dyer pointed out in Saturday's paper, Saudi Arabia wants Syria destroyed because it (by Saudi's perverted standards) is too democratic - so it's existence near to Saudi Arabia is a threat.

We have law and order. But not all forms of law and order are good. Some, like the Soviet Union, had been are bad, indeed - and we are in the very bad pile. We need, for a start, honesty in government. And we're not going to find that in either the Liberals or the Conservatives.

We also have to make corporate bosses understand that in a democracy, they are ordinary citizens just like the rest of us.  The alternative?

There are plenty of examples from history. The  bosses become increasingly dictatorial and reliant on violence. Then it collapses, sometimes because the reaction gets so severe, sometimes because of the utter incompetence of business leaders in running a society.

Alas, once it goes that far, nobody can tell how it will work out.

1 comment:

  1. It's a case of the old "shell and pea" game from times past. As the "head" man throws senators under the bus we are still missing 3.1 BILLION

    And we are getting free trade with the EU that as far as I can see will benefit the select few? (east-west pipeline anyone?)

    As far as "law and order" goes....... it's hard, if not impossible, to argue with those who can change/create laws at a whim. For you to be able to do so requires those very came folks to have a bit of personal integrity, so I would *guess* regular type folks are plain out of luck.