Chapter 9: To what extent and for whom has the imposition of liberalism been successful? Liberalism in Aboriginal Culture: Liberalism is very individualistic, while aboriginal values are collective. Liberalists traditionally want private land, while aboriginals want shared land. Efforts have been made to assimilate aboriginals through Enfranchisement and the Indian Act. In the 60’s and 70’s the federal government tried to include First Nations in society with the ‘White Paper.’ A summary of the ‘White Paper’ and the ‘Red Paper’, which was the aboriginal response to the motions of the Federal Government, can be seen on: http://www2.canadiana.ca/citm/themes/aborigina ls/aboriginals12_e.html http://www2.canadiana.ca/citm/themes/aborigina ls/aboriginals12_e.html
Chapter 9 Continued: Liberalism is driven by self-interest. Self-interest drives capitalistic economic structures, and thus Liberalism drives many Western ideologies. When nations that are under Liberalist policy decide that they want to influence the rest of the world, they can choose to implement their Liberalist policy on other nations either by way of bureaucratic means, or by military force. This has been seen throughout world history, and most prominently in the Middle East. Since the Cold War, when the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan, the Middle East has been a hotbed of political and civil unrest. The governments of many nations are supported under the table by the super powers of the world. An example of this is the arms deals between the United States and Iran which were leaked to the world during the time Ronald Reagan was in office, also known as the Iran-Contra Affair. After the Soviet Union withdrew from Afghanistan, the world watched as American President George Bush Sr. Invaded Iraq during ‘Operation Desert Storm.’ This was the start of the Gulf War, and another era of fighting and conflict in the Middle East. After the turn of the century, the world again saw tensions flare in the Middle East as a result of 911, and Afghanistan was invaded by NATO nations during the War on Terror. Following this, Iraq again became the hot zone of conflict in the Middle East, when American President George Bush invaded Iraq yet again, to “Liberate” the Iraqi people, and impose Liberalist and Democratic ideals on them with ‘Operation Iraqi Freedom.’ While the United States made claims that these conflicts were started for the best interests of the people in the Middle East, the United States has a lot to gain by going to war in that section of the globe (Oil revenue and areas of production, Spheres of Influence, etc). These events show that Liberalist nations often impose their policies and practices upon other nations out of self-interest.
Chapter 10: To what extent should governments reflect the will of the people? In Canada, Party Solidarity is key in the political system. This means the members of a party are required to vote with the party in the House of Commons. This is only lifted when party leaders implement a “free vote” where all party members can vote as they wish. In Canada, a party in power can be forced to resign or call an election when it loses a vote on an appropriation bill, taxation bills, or a budget. Motion of confidence is rejected by a majority vote Motion of non-confidence is passed by a majority This means that the government has lost its mandate to govern. Sometimes MP’s go against the Party Solidarity mandate, this often means party expulsion or voluntary leave. In a democracy, the “will of the people” is central to the workings and the shape of the government.
Chapter 10 Continued: Liberal Democracies, during the time of their formation, were based on the accomplishment of the will of the people. “What I want is to get done what the people desire to have done, and the question for me is how to find that out exactly.”- Abraham Lincoln. In democracies, sometimes the people feel that the government is not following the will of the people. This shows how the can only do so much. Democracy is not perfect. How people vote, and the issues that affect them, show the will of the people. Weather a nation follows representative democracy like Canada, propositional representation like Sweden or a Republican Democracy like the United States, there are always challenges to the will of the people. These can include, voter turnout, lobbying, and ethics. Also, practicality vs. popular opinion often affects vote. Consensus decision making is what democracy is all about. Its about pleasing the majority, and finding a “happy medium”.
Chapter 10 Continued: On the other side of the spectrum from democracy is Authoritarianism. This is a government system where security and safety of the nation is paramount. The government believes that it has the peoples best interest at heart, even if the people don’t know it. Authoritarianism rests authority in an elite group that may or may not rule with the best interests of the people at heart.
Chapter 11: To what extent should democratic governments promote and protect individual and collective rights? Protection of Rights and Liberal Democracies: Life, liberty and personal safety. Fundamental b/c they are necessary for an individual to enjoy free will. Specific legislation (Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms) employed to entrench fundamental rights. Liberal democratic societies cannot alter without extensive consultation of public, field experts, and w/o substantial multi-party support. No limits to individual rights Example: Quebec Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms Example: Tom Wappel, against same sex marriages Opinion on Bill C-38 (extension of equality of individual rights to formerly disadvantaged groups). Discriminatory, Supreme court did not declare same-sex marriages right.
Chapter 11 Continued: Promotion of Collective Rights: Group rights achieved by the extension of individual rights. US, “affirmative action” implemented in 1960’s to address inequalities that minorities/women faced. To improve employment/education, minorities we are given preferential treatment in work and education opportunities. Some saw this as “reverse discrimination”. Collective rights retain the form of individual rights but applied to the group. Recognition of Collective Rights: Including collective rights in the Charter and promoting them are two different things. Example: Francophone's in Alberta schools. (Wanted Francophone schools and school boards.) Language legislation. Includes signs in Quebec to be French. (Can also be in another language as long as French is predominant.) Bill 101- official language of Quebec is French. (This allowed both French and English legislature.) Bill 178- only French allowed on exterior signs. Bill 86- Public signs/posters and commercial advertising must be French.
Chapter 11 Continued: Rejecting the principles of Liberalism: Should Liberal Democracies always adhere to principles. Example: In February 2008, Canadian soldiers were warned not to use popular websites when communicating and not to show uniformed pictures of them. (Could show opponents better ways to attack.) Controversial- Liberal Democratic government violating liberal principles is US Army’s “Stop-loss” provision. War Measures Act: Passed in 1914 in response to Canada`s involvement in WWI Only been invoked three times, most notably during the FLQ Crisis in Quebec. This was the largest domestic terrorism incident in Canadian History, and the most prominent and recognizable use of the War Measures Act under the leadership of Pierre Elliot Trudeau. Reasons for being invoked; necessary for the overall good of society, threat or severe nature of situation, essential to protect, retain or secure other principles of Liberalism. Gave power to cabinet for circumstances where it determined that the existence of war, invasion or insurrection, real/apprehended, existed. http://www.youtube.com/w atch?v=-7_a2wa2dd4 http://www.youtube.com/w atch?v=-7_a2wa2dd4 Watch starting at 4:46.
Chapter 11 Continued: World War I and Enemy Aliens: First use of War Measures Act. Immigrants from Germany/Austria/Hungary, living in Canada were considered enemy aliens. Several thousand enemy aliens were deported to internment camps. World War II placed nearly 23000 Japanese-Canadians in internment camps. (Early 1942) Emergencies and Security Legislation Today: Introduced in 1988. Harmonize law with the Charter. Public welfare emergency is defined as one that is caused by: natural catastrophe, disease, accident/pollution.
Chapter 11 Continued: Restricting Freedom in Subtle Ways: USA PATRIOT ACT P = Providing A = Appropriate T = Tools R = Required to I = Intercept and O = Obstruct T = Terrorism
Chapter 12: To what extent do contemporary issues challenge the principles of liberalism? This chapter focuses on the idea that there are some things in modern society that challenge the ideas of Liberalism. Some examples are: Post modernism: The idea that society is at its highest point and cannot be advanced more. Critiques knowledge Minority groups are given respect Extremism: Belief system outside the mainstream spectrum of beliefs. Extremism may advocate actions or ideologies that could be interpreted by society as immoral. An example of people who may fall into this category are terrorists. If a government is threatened by extremism, it could revoke the freedoms of all citizens under it. An example of this would be the FLQ Crisis in Canada. The War Measures Act was induced.
Chapter 12 Continued: Economic Extremism Economic Extremism is defined as an economy that will not change its practises despite how it affects its people. A good example of this are the Eastern and Western Bloc’s in the Cold War. Some argue that some forms of capitalism are becoming extremist and only set up for those with money. Consumerism This issue challenges Liberalism because consumerism is a direct negative result of Liberalism. Some Liberal democracy’s take steps to limit it by implementing taxes and tariff’s on some goods within the marketplace. Environmentalism Similar to consumerism, the practices of Liberalism negatively influence the environment. Environmentalists challenge Liberal practices by stressing the preservation of the environment. A major example of Environmentalist policy in Canadian history is the Kyoto protocol. A summary of this can be found at the following link: http://www.alternate-energy- sources.com/Kyoto-Protocol-summary.htmlhttp://www.alternate-energy- sources.com/Kyoto-Protocol-summary.html
Chapter 12: The Growth of India and China As Economic Superpowers During recent history, as the economies of the Western world become increasingly dependant on oil and oil revenue, other world economies are taking off and growing at unprecedented rates. Two examples of this are the nations of India and China. While the two nations are experiencing similar stages of economic growth, they are achieving this growth by two very distinctly different means. China has become a world destination for cheap unskilled labour, and manufacturing. This means long hours in poor working conditions for the people employed by the trans-national corporations that use China as a hotbed of production. A prime example of one of these companies in today’s economy is Wal-Mart. India, on the other hand, has moved the economy in a technology based direction. The population is, for the most part, well educated and English speaking. This means that Western IT companies from the America’s and Europe are using India’s large population base, and untapped work force as a starting off point for new age industry such as call centers, and other technology based industries. These changes in the economic landscape have allowed these two nations to become power players in the global market, and could open the door to one or both of them becoming one of the next world superpowers.