Thursday, May 26, 2011

If She Were Prime Minister

In 1987, Mel Hurtig edited a book If I were prime Minister (ISBN: 0-88830-315-7). Each chapter was written by a prominent Canadian, who outlined what they would do if they were prime minister of Canada.

George Ignatieff was one of those prominent Canadians.

Green Party's Elizabeth May, has a piece at Huffington Post, where she outlines her goals, if she were in fact prime minister. And her primary goal would be to limit the powers of her office.
In Canada, at the moment, we face a significant menace to our democracy. The prime minister of Canada (stated as a generic, rather than a personal reality) has far more power than a U.S. president or a U.K. prime minister. Checks and balances have been bypassed in Canada. Even in a minority parliament, the Canadian prime minister has shown himself able to dictate terms, laws, and policy without having a parliamentary debate on such things as violating Kyoto, sending jets to Libya, or leaving one of our nationals in Guantanamo Bay.

Now, following the May 2, 2011 election, the prime minister of Canada, leader of the Conservative Party, has a majority of the seats in the House of Commons -- even though the electorate's popular vote was 60-plus per cent in opposition to his government. The unelected, appointed Senate (the Canadian version of the British House of Lords) has now been stacked with Conservative appointments.

So my wish list under the heading "If I were prime minister" begins with reducing the unhealthy and undemocratic power of the Prime Minister's Office.
I think it might be nice to have another book published, similar to the 1987 offering.

I wonder how many would share May's concern.


  1. I certainly share her concerns, but I'm not a prominent Canadian, and I would hate to be Prime Minister. (I'd like to be the voice of the PM's conscience, however.)

  2. She gets my vote for Leader of the Liberal Party, but I've said that here before.

    And I share her views 100&.