Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Credit Where it's Due

If you read anything I write on politics you probably think I'm biased.

For instance, you probably think I oppose the Conservative party. And you're right! To a large extent I also oppose the Dippers, Liberals, and Greens. 

Wait, what?

Truth is, I am biased. I oppose the entire damn party system.

It's a broken model that creates conflicts of interest and leaves you and I without a voice in Ottawa. 

Who does your representative represent, exactly? If they have to choose between representing their constituents or toeing the party line, what will they do?

Trick question!

There's no choice involved. Party leaders whip their members into voting according to the party's interests, meaning your MP represents their party whether they want to or not.

Now there are exceptions to the rule. Some MP's cross lines, disregard orders, and vote their conscience. But these are rare individuals! I know because I'm tracking them as we speak.

They're on my list. I'm recruiting them to the People's Party as soon as the revolution kicks off.

You hear that, Kennedy Stewart?

You hear that Michael Chong?

Just so I don't sound cynical and jaded though I'd like to take this opportunity to give credit where credit is due.

I always rant about "evidence-based policy making." I always talk about how politicians should defer to specialists whenever possible. Well here's a fine example of it:

MPs On Health Committee Seek More Warnings About Cellphones, Wi-Fi, Baby Monitors

And did you see? A Conservative MP at the forefront!

See I don't care what party you're in. If you're doing your job, I give you props. Fuck all that partisan bullshit. That's just more flag-loving political hooliganism.

Why do I care about the potential dangers of cellphones and other wireless devices? Haven't we been told before that there is no danger from these devices? From the article:
Dariusz Leszczynski, a biosciences professor at the University of Helsinki, told MPs that the scientific community has polarized into two extremes, one group that believes cellphone and wireless communication radiation have no effect and another group that believes it has harmful effects.
Doesn't this sound familiar?

There are a number of similar issues currently circulating the globe, issues that polarize not only scientists but politicians, industrialists, and everyday citizens around the world.

Climate change, GMO's, and vaccines come to mind.

In some cases these issues highlight the failure of the scientific community to effectively communicate with the public; in other cases they show once again that science, like any other tool, can be hijacked and corrupted by third parties.

Remember when scientists swore up and down that smoking was perfectly healthy? Who was paying those guys again?

Oh yeah, tobacco companies.

Anyway, I digress.

The good news is our government is actually speaking to scientists again.

I know there's an election around the corner and this is probably mere posturing, but it's a baby step in the right direction. So there you go.

/rant over 

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