Last year we had the Occupy response to ‘the Establishment’. Before that, we had the Arab Spring and Summer. Sometime during the Occupy movement, Greece split a few seams as well (many more to follow after their next election). Today, we have Quebec, Montreal and the student protests.
People, it seems, are revolting. Yech!
But, really, face it. Revolution is long overdue when you think about it. Putting aside any one issue – each of which was large enough to warrant protest – there is an underlying frustration almost everywhere and that frustration is just waiting for a local cause around which to coalesce.
Typically and historically, major protests resulting in revolution were and are rooted in economic unfairness. From the peasants in the French Revolution to the students in Quebec, it is usually about money and how the lack of it makes everyday living too difficult. I would even posit that the riots erupting after the Rodney King beating in LA were economic at the root. Mr. King’s brutal treatment (he was not the first peasant nor the last to be beaten by the police) was just a catalyst for ghetto frustration not just directed at the police but also at their ‘everyday living’ situation. People riot in Watts and South Central, not Beverly Hills.
But that is not my point, really. Poverty causes discontent. We all know that.
My point is that it is all on track for only getting worse. There has been a rapidly growing-larger disparity between the rich and the poor for some time now. Economists claim two decades. It has been noticeable to me since the turn of the century. Some disparity is normal (people are disparate). But this recent kind of incredibly vast, completely unjustified disparity is abnormal and a major step in the wrong direction.
It indicates the system is broken.
There has also been an attendant and increasing government oppression of the people even before 9/11 when it got kicked up a notch or ten. More and more, governments rule by dictate and oppression. That is another major strategic government error. It indicates that the keepers of the system can’t do the job.
I guess they just don’t get it.
And why should they? Politicians have voted some pretty comfy benefits for themselves. They, generally speaking, come from a privileged place even before getting elected. They live and work and think in a gilded bubble. They are part of the problem, not part of the solution.
Do you really think that John Duncan (our MP, the one whose limousine driver made $22,000 in overtime over four months waiting for John to finish his meals at fancy restaurants?) has any idea of what it is like to live at or near the poverty level in his riding? The man is completely clueless.
He is not alone. It would seem they all are. Bubble-living does that to you. See: Marie Antoinette.
I wouldn’t have thought it so before – not in these modern democratic times – but there are no leaders! No leaders heading for resolution anyway. There are plenty of leaders heading for the trough.
There have to be some good, sane, rooted-in-reality politicians out there…………? Right? Nowadays, I am not so sure. There sure as Hell aren’t any in Canada, that is quite obvious. Even that bright spark, Elizabeth May, seems to lack the charisma, the dazzle, the ‘star-quality’ that we seem to require in our leaders. We need someone whose inner glow radiates brightly outwards.
We got nothing…….
Well, we have dictatorship, the dark lord Harper-types extinguishing any light like a monstrous black hole. How else to explain the corruption of the electoral system, the increasing restrictions of rights and freedoms, the squandering of our resources and the escalation of rule by fiat? And hardly a peep from anyone?
I hear Harper is shopping for colourful epaulets to go with the billion dollar fighter jets.
Where are our strong, creative, positive, wholesome voices of dissent? And by ‘our’, I mean ‘adults’.
Students?! Are Quebecois students my new leaders?
I don’t think so. But God bless ’em for trying.
Advisory panels, investigative and review committees, local governments, popular opinion, even the rare and endangered voice of a contrary media report have not altered the dictatorial, totalitarian, Draconian responses of government oppression of the people. Not lately, anyway. Now the students in Quebec are giving it a shot.
It is not going to be enough.
Quebec just took this all-to-universal Orwellian-style authoritative knee-jerk response one step too far. Charest slapped the students across the face. So it became personal. Gordon Campbell insulted the people of BC and we revolted. Now it is Quebec’s turn. But we were mollified and now it is only Quebec.
Our problem: we are not united. And student tuitions in Quebec are not going to unite us.
You can do a lot to oppress the people. And they have. Kill the salmon, pollute the oceans, spill oil all over the place and monitor our every move and we bend over for more of the same. We are sheep who don’t peep.
Be careful with tuition fees or sales tax, tho. We only seem to revolt if it costs us a buck! Boy! Talk about getting the government you doeserve, eh? Those pigs-at-the-trough reflect our values!!!
Quebec may or may not be reflecting the greater frustration that I believe a lot of people in many nations are feeling. But, like the Occupy movement, the opposition to Enbridge and Kinder Morgan, the various protests against the WTO and other sociopathic entities, they have my support.
I’d like to see it gel as one, tho. To make a real difference, it can’t be sporadic and localized. They have to go BIG. It has to be one voice. One issue. A leader would help. It would also be nice if we could get united behind something more noble than the almighty dollar, tho. Don’t you think?
You’ll understand if I remain somewhat distant from it all. I think it is only going to get worse. You reap what you sow.