Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Blog Action Day!

Harper is back, with even more MPs than before. Gah. People are worried about our economic crisis but forget to step back and notice the poverty crisis:

30 000 children die every day from poverty-related causes [www.freethechildren.com]

That's one child every 3 seconds! That means in the time it takes you to read this post, 20-50 children will die, depending on how long it ends up being and how fast you read.

However, this poverty could be prevented! All it would take is 0.7% of the national income of 22 developed nations. This would raise the $195 billion needed to combat poverty effectively.[1] They pledged to do this in 2000, and many nations have already reached this goal. Canada has no plan whatsoever, and is currently only giving 0.28%.

Stephen Harper is doing nothing about this, and yet he gets re-elected - despite the conservative government having only 37% of votes. These extremely disproportionate results highlight the growing problem in Canada of the outdated plurality voting system. The Green Party (which, not incidentally, does have a plan to meet the 0.7% aid) had 900 000 votes nationwide (out of 13 million) and yet got not a single seat, where fewer than that number of voters in the west produced 27 conservative seats. Add to that an all-time low of 59.1% voter turnout,[2] and there is clearly something wrong.

...so we need a change. Forget potential change in governing party – we need a change in government policy at the electoral level. Canada's voting system dates back to the 12th century! It is outdated and does not work in a country that is no longer composed of just two parties. I still don't know exactly what we need, but the solution is out there. Here are some links for your readage: