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Why I want to be Prime Minister of Canada

Clifford Olsen.

He is the reason that I want to be Prime Minister of Canada.

Because, when I was in grade seven at Richard McBride Elementary School in New Westminster BC – Clifford Olsen molested, kidnapped and murdered more children than he was ever charged with, because the Justice System at the time – much like what was done with Willie Pickton – charge for the minimum number of victims as possible to ensure a life sentence – so as to not create a gold standard for other murderers to surpass.

It’s not because I encountered him and lived to tell – but it is because I was able to face him and not become his victim that I feel an obligation to consider being Prime Minister of Canada.

It’s not entirely because the high school offered a course in career planning and part of that involved entering your work preferences and interests into a computer program called CHOICES that would then crunch through a database of 10,000 jobs and then give you a list of options.

The instructions were to print any results that had fewer than 10 careers.

My first five searches, with all or most of my criteria, unsurprisingly to me but in total shock to the teacher – resulted in zero careers.

I was simply trying to fit too much in – so I had to prioritize and compromise and finally, I was getting jobs for my search results.

The First Result was one job: Prime Minister of Canada.

The next few result lists still had Prime Minister as best suited and Movie Producer as second – other careers included communications/marketing, computer or other sciences, and creative writing/editor – publishing.

I probably still have the dot matrix print outs somewhere.

So the reason why Clifford Olsen makes me want to be Prime Minister is because the Justice System has become a system under which prisoners and accused are ensured a fair trial and that we have actually gone so far as to make the Justice System unresponsive to victims of crime and barely tolerate the families of victims who cannot speak for themselves anymore.

Don’t misunderstand – I am for prisoner rights and safety – and I am even more for the safety of prison guards and administrators – because let’s face it – they are in the prison as a day job – not because they did something wrong.

But I do not see that a system designed to contain the prison population from rioting – by offering “faint hope” of parole, by offering rehabilitation, training and education to allow prisoners the opportunity to become socially capable and responsible citizens upon release – is serving either the prison population or Canadians.

Worse, I do not think there is much justice when the perpetrator of a horrific crime – such as murder – is given every chance possible to become a responsible citizen – and the family of the victim is given no support and no meaningful voice – heck – they are the one who lost a love one – the crime is against that Family more than it is against the Crown or The People.

The loss happened to the family of the victim and they don’t get support that remotely approaches what convicted criminals get – and worse – they have to not only suffer the loss of their loved one – but also have to endure an investigation into their loved one that the impact is often – well, the perp is innocent until proven guilty – so not only do you have to endure the loss of your loved one – but also the idea that they might have brought it upon them self – as appalling an idea that is.

But that’s how it plays in the mind of the family: I have lost my loved one – and this person who is responsible for ending that life – now has to be treated with kid gloves and all kinds of consideration – even when there is little room for doubt – even when the evidence is clear, because one wrong step by police, and the warrant is voided and the evidence is gone from trial consideration.

The need for police procedures and following those procedures is clear. However, I am just going to say this – I would rather Canada have to pay restitution to a wrongfully imprisoned person than allow any obviously by the evidence honestly obtained even if not excessively technically corrected obtained guilty people walk free.

I would reduce the number of wrongfully convicted by ensuring people are not wrongfully arrested at the start or at the least, aren’t taken to trial.

Because the change that I would like to see to the Criminal Justice System is that the police are insulated enough from public and political pressure to not just investigate and arrest whoever is the first good fit.

Remember Clifford Olsen?

My Dad used to jog in Queen Elizabeth Park in New Westminster – probably because he had a beard and because he didn’t have a fancy track suit – the police followed him for a while before Olsen was caught. It was very distressing to know you were being followed by police and weren’t doing anything to warrant it in the best of circumstances so it hasn’t helped by the highly public search for a child killer.

Olsen didn’ t have a beard, the police just had no leads – because when you look at the “solved” murder figures – most murders are solvable because the murderer is known to the victim. Stranger murders, lacking the victim connection, are harder to generate leads or investigation headway.

But that’s not why Olsen makes me want to be Prime Minister.

It was Olsen using the faint hope process and whatever press access he had from solitary confinement – that allowed Olsen to continue to physiologically torture the victim families, and his living victims, specifically and British Columbians generally.

That’s not justice for anyone and it’s an extension of prisoner rights beyond personal safety and Charter Right guarantees.

And if people are so concerned that law abiding gays and lesbians not be given “special rights” – special in this case being the same rights applied meaningfully to the individual circumstance – then I have to wonder – if law abiding gays and lesbians can’t have special rights – why then are criminals and prisoners allowed not only special rights, but vigilant protection of their range of rights by the provincial and federal government?

Why are victims and their families or the families of victims – given the least consideration, protection and the smallest voice? Haven’t they been victimized enough without Establishment marginalizing victims and their families even more?

For a party that rode into Ottawa on a law and order victim rights agenda – the Reform turned CCRAP (remember when they called themselves Canadian Conservative Reform Alliance Party? they shoulda had to have kept that name) to whatever they are now being helmed by Mr. Stephen Harper; I can’t say that the party’s treatment of former MP Chuck Cadman gave me the impression that they cared about victims.

And I am a bit baffled by the Widow Cadman both suing the party for how they treated her husband AND being the Conservative MP in Chuck’s riding – the first riding in Canada to ever elect an Independant MP – Chuck Cadman after he was ousted by the party in favour of another candidate – who – I don’t recall if the Conservative Candidate got any votes, whoever it was.

In any event, although he was originally elected within a party that I am not likely to ever join, Chuck Cadman was an outstanding MP who became the first elected independent and he cast the critical vote that extended the Paul Martin government of that day.

But I don’t have any impression of his widow as an MP. No clue about her whatsoever. I don’t know if no impression is accurate, but I rarely read the local community papers – so maybe someone out there can comment here about Donna Cadman, MP?

It’s all very confusing when you look at the facts absent of context, but context leads to editorial and that often leads to …. probably some kind of lawsuit.

So, I want to be Prime Minister of Canada because I have always stood up against bullies and protected their intended targets from harm.

Which is a little bit what Canada does on an international scale – Canada is Peacekeeping – and we punch above our weight class because we have America to the south who we ride along with.

And Canadians are good with that – we don’t want to run the world, we just want to help make the world run a little more peacefully for everyone.

The world needs more Canada – not Canada the American Lite Edition.

The world needs more of traditional Canada – human rights equality, peacekeeping, universal health care and more.

Because governments should execute laws on behalf of citizens, not execute citizens or enact persecution laws or worse, undermine the existing laws and dismantle the social safety net.

Because it’s a lot cheaper to prevent crime through poverty reduction, legalized marijuana and decriminalized other drugs, through public eduction & health, grants & contributions for small business and fostering a society where everyone’s survival needs are met and the only limit to anyone’s thrive-al needs is down to their own hard work and talent – than to manage crime and build more prisons – aka prisoner universities and Club Fed resorts.

In fact, shouldn’t everyone be concerned that the current government of the day is planning to build more prisons while allowing Canada to no longer be the world’s leader of medical radioactive isotopes?

Shouldn’t everyone be concerned that some of the first things that PM Harper did upon taking office was shutting down the Charter Challenge program and gutting The Department of Status of Women? And slashing arts and community event funding? And now, despite his promise to accept Canadians acceptance of marriage equality, somehow, gay marriage is front page news again?

Do we really want a government who is more interested in imprisoning Canadians than ensuring employment and economic opportunity?

Do we really want anyone as Prime Minister who’s Canada doesn’t include everyone who’s already part of Canada?

#3 – The Language Issue

Canada is a multicultural society and the two languages – English and French, French and English – are in honour of our European forebearers.

But artificially propping up any language that cannot sustain itself isn’t working and it’s costly in many ways that are hidden from all Canadians – coast to coast – and instead of the nation being bilingual, we are a nation divided – so we have to figure out a common understanding across our linguistic and other arbitrary differences – because in my Canada – Canadians should be able to be served by their government in whatever language they are most comfortable in.

Canada must become as the European Union – with citizens capable of speaking multiple languages if they want to and can learn.

And allow the marketplace of culture determine the languages of the culture.

Because I want to tell you a story – when I worked at Indian and Northern Affairs Canada – I was asked to track down a phone number. Specifically, I was asked to find out if the number was a BC Telus number or an Ontario Bell Canada number.

And what I learned was that a person had called this particular number and the phone was answered in English. The caller was from British Columbia, to the regional Vancouver office of the Department.

The problem was that the number was listed in the phone book as a French Language Line.

So, the person filed a complaint with the Official Languages and these complaints never ever die – this investigation had already been on-going for over a year when I became part of the story.

And the story behind the call was that the Vancouver Office had the French Language line picked up in Quebec – and on the day of the call, was the day of Quebec’s Ice Storm.

And the English Language speaker was the only person who happened to be able to get into the Quebec office and they just forwarded all the lines to their phone.

And the Department of Official Languages was full force investigating and demanding accountability for this transgression of Indian and Northern Affairs Vancouver office – without any regard to the reality of the situation.

I roughly calculated – without knowing anything about that Department’s workings – that at the every least – my whole annual salary had already been wasted in investigating something that any rational or practical person would have taken into account the circumstances and let the matter drop as an unusual situation and not something that could have been anticipated by the department as a high risk or high impact event.

And I think that that same money – rather than investigating such a claim – would have better served Canadians if it had been given to a school district for language education.

#2 – As Prime Minister – Survival Assured

If elected as Prime Minister, I had said that my goal is to have Canada be the closest nation on earth to the Star Trek Federation.

I will revive “Mincome” a short lived one Manitoba town experiment in 1974 that yielded a number of successes and then was shelved and ended up in a number of boxes in the National Archives.

It’s time for Canadians to have the benefit of the social safety network that we pride ourselves on too well that we don’t notice how tattered and worn that net has become in some places from underfunding and mis-management.

Because in a land with as many resources as Canada – no one should be hungry or without hope.

It is in the interests of all Canadians to be assure that every citizen has their survival needs assured – eliminating abject poverty, eliminating the barriers preventing people from economic opportunity or inclusion – so that each person can determine their thrival level from their own talent, skills and interest level.

#1 – As Prime Minister of Canada

If elected Prime Minister; because my vision for Canada is the Star Trek Federation, I promise to offer William Shatner the position of Governor General of Canada.

I beleive that Mr. Shatner has brought a Canadian vibe to the entertainment world and that his recognition as a Canadian performer and cultural ambassador is over due.


All I Need To Know About Life I Learned From Star Trek

  • Seek out new life and new civilizations. (Novelty and diversity are good)
  • Non-interference is the Prime Directive. (campfire rule)
  • Keep your phaser set on stun. (saves having to do paperwork later)
  • Humans are highly illogical. (but that’s what works for us)
  • There’s no such thing as a Vulcan death grip. (we beleive what we’d like to be true)
  • Live long and prosper. (the best revenge is living well)
  • Having is not so pleasing a thing as wanting; it is not logical but it is often true.
  • Infinite diversity in infinite combinations (IDIC).
  • Don’t put all your ranking officers in one shuttle craft. (or eggs in one basket)
  • When your logic fails, trust a hunch, because Insufficient data does not compute. (so understand probability and chaos theory)
  • Even in our own world, sometimes we are aliens.
  • When going out into the Universe, remember: “Boldly go where no one has gone before!”