I was down at Occupy Regina this afternoon, and went on the march too around downtown, after listening to the interesting speeches. After the main speakers were done, a man started shouting for people to listen to him, which the crowd did as he asked us if we understood that someone created everything. Then it became clear about 30 seconds in that he was there for an entirely different purpose, to convince people to follow his Lord, and the crowd wandered away on its march.
After the march the crowd dispersed to gather food for a potluck supper, and I stayed a little while longer to teach a kid in the crowd how to juggle. After a few days, she’s starting to get the hang of it; I think she’ll be able to before the snow flies.
I was also having a discussion today with Murray Mandryk of the Leader Post, on his Twitter account. It was probably the political event of the day, since we’re both so pig-headed and verbose [for Twitter, being verbose is difficult].
@saskboy thank you folks. We’re here Mondays through Saturdays. Come again. And try the veal. #skvotes
In play was Murray’s column, and my insistence that Big Media is not being democratic by blocking the Liberals and Greens (and even the PCs and WIP) from the TV debate. Worse, there’s only one main debate on TV with the man widely expected to be Premier again.
Apparently, parties like the Greens are supposed to monitor media for ideas in how they can get a subordinate role in the leaders debate they should be invited to participate in.
“Really, how much do voters want to hear from someone who can’t even form a government?”
Well, last election about 1/9 voters cast ballots for parties other than the two debating this time. The voter turnout was less than 75%, correct? So about 25% of the voters also weren’t inspired to support what they may have heard from the predominantly covered politicians. It’s such an untested, and cynical question, it really has an answer other than the one Murray thinks is common sense.
He did offer a compromise, but when real solutions can be implemented before Tuesday, it’s unpalatable to me.
But there is still a compelling argument for some level of third-party involvement. Elections aren’t just about who’s likely to win. They are an exchange of ideas and, right now, we’re not hearing much from the two major camps on the environment, the nuclear debate, ownership of Crown corporations, the debt load and a lobbyist registry – all major issues being raised by the Liberals, PCs and Greens. Wouldn’t having to address these issues add to the quality of the current discourse?
So what’s the solution? Well, here’s a simple one – one that could still be implemented in time for next week’s debate.
Rather than have members of the public or journalists (who also love their face time) pose all the questions to Wall and Lingenfelter, dedicate just one section of the debate to letting each third-party leader pose one question, which the NDP and the Sask. Party leader would then debate.
If democracy comes down to one question per party leader, per election cycle, I think that stinks. Who is making up crap here?
More Debates! Not Fewer Debaters!