Monday, March 19, 2007

The Provincialists

I am not a provincialist, I am a municipal bio-regionalist (watersheds).
I think Quebec nationalism is an extreme form of provincialism, but it's no different than Alberta-centric or Ontario-centric politics. Provincialism is a synonym for small minded. I've essentially lived all my life in Ontario, but Ontario means next to nothing to me as a political entity.
People live in communities, and all planning in all communities is based on watershed management issues. A Province is even more of an abstraction than a nation. For my part, if I was given the task of restructuring the federation I would model it on a pyramid, with a powerful base, a narrowing middle and a small peak on top.

I'd unify the whole structure from the ground up, so that (for example) a local roads' department would be linked to the regional department, which would in turn be linked to the provincial department which would likewise be linked to the federal one. A local mayor would sit on a bioregional council of other mayors, the directly elected head of that council would become an MPP, we would have a directly elected provincial cabinet, and the directly elected Premiers would form the Federal cabinet, with the provincial cabinet members serving as MP's, with a directly elected Prime Minister overseeing the whole.

The system however would be powered from below. The provincial and federal Parliaments like the local and bioregional councils would be non-partisan, so the whole issue of party loyalty before duty would be discarded. All levels of government would operate as a tax credit union, in which politicians would be the equivalent of citizen elected board members and bureaucrats would be the equivalent of staff.


No comments: