Idle No More mantra needs to apply to all of us

I so dislike politicians these days.

Local conservative-loving politicians have suggested I hate only Stephen Harper Conservatives.

I may dislike the Harper government more than its opposition counterparts but I do not hate it as some local conservative-striped politicians have been suggesting.

People who sing the same song as me aren’t using the hate word either but I have noticed politicians using the hate word more regularly to discredit opposition rather than offering solutions.

Hate is a long way from dislike, but hate is where politicians seem to want us to go as the government of the day practises divide-and-conquer tactics.

Opposing sides are responding, as expected, by moving farther apart and becoming more vitriolic in their commentary towards each other. Maybe we should be arming ourselves as we move to be more like America?

This week’s press leak, questioning Chief Theresa Spence’s —  not Indian Affairs’, nor the Harper government’s — role in the whole Attawapiskat issue was a typical devious political move to deflect the public’s interest in the chief’s hunger strike and the recent rising up of the Idle No More movement.

Facebook friends were quick to ask  “is this true, are the reports telling us the truth?”

This is how fast opinions can change in this media-driven environment. Watch Sun News if you want more ‘be calm’ reporting from the conservative/corporate front.

Fortunately this tactic failed miserably for most who follow the political scene closely.

For many of us, this move was almost expected, as leaks have become a strategic way to redirect the public and media’s interest in issues.

If anything, this tactic has further strengthened the opposition movement as media manipulation is seen as indicative of weakness.

Press leaks, lies, misrepresentations, waste and ignorance all seem to be gaining a stronger foothold in political offices at all levels.

It seems our politicians are too busy looking after themselves rather than the country and that worries me.

Canadians don’t like this style of politics and it is not helping us find solutions for the issues that plague our country.

Leadership is desperately needed, not yes men to corporate handlers.

All politicians are to blame for this as we watch them heckle each other and dance for the cameras.

It makes great television for five minutes every night as the Conservatives defend their actions and the opposition cries shame, shame.

It sure sets a good example for the rest of us.

Canadians should also be held accountable for where we are at now.

Too long we have sat in a quiet majority, paying little attention to the politicians as they undermine and undercut important programs and laws that took decades to implement.

Our disinterest and disdain for the Canadian political process has brought us blindly, but willingly to the brink of dictatorship Canadian style.

The Idle No More movement is about all of us. It may be attributed to our Native cousins at this moment in time but it reflects the growing unrest being stirred by the antics of politicians who no longer listen to the people but dance to the drum beat of industry.

The Occupy movement was the first round.

Idle is the second, and there will likely be a third round as concerned Canadians do not see change anywhere on the horizon. The stakes are the highest they have ever been.

Now would be a really good time to try a new approach.

Paul Fletcher is former Duncan city councillor who writes monthly in the News Leader Pictorial.

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