Our ‘Leaders’ Fear Freedom

Which means they fear what made the Western world successful in the first place.

One of the biggest mistakes our society makes when looking at the past is to judge it by the standards of the present.

This is especially dangerous in a country like Canada – and in other Western nations – because it destroys our understanding of the values and principles that brought us so much success.

For example, it is absolutely true that there was more discrimination in the past. Unfortunately, many people use that fact as a way to dismiss the idea that Canada is a nation based upon freedom and individual rights.

What has mattered most throughout history is relative freedom, how free a country is compared to other places on Earth.

The great centres of innovation and wealth creation, from Greece and Rome in ancient times, to Great Britain, and the United States, have tended to be the countries and/or regions that were the freest relative to their competitors.

Western Civilization, which is objectively the wealthiest and most technologically advanced civilization in history, was centered around individual rights and freedoms, to a far greater extent than any other civilization.

This freedom enabled the rapid spread of ideas and innovation, ensured that open debate would test ideas to find which worked best, and had relatively decentralized power, making experimentation possible and avoiding the massive and destructive mistakes that centralized authorities often undertake.

Ironically, those who push the propaganda of the Chinese Communist Party, and those who despise Canadian history, often make the same overlapping claim whenever Canada criticizes China’s human rights record.

Some will point to Residential Schools and the past treatment of Indigenous People, and claim that Canada thus has no standing to criticize China’s actions against the Uyghur’s, for example.

Of course, that line is convenient for governments that are currently oppressing people, since it would theoretically protect them from any and all criticism.

And it’s an old tactic.

Both fascist Germany and the Soviet Union sought to invalidate criticism from the United States, by pointing to racism in the US, and the history of slavery.

Of course, Germany and the Soviet Union made those claims about the past as a way to distract from the fact that they were committing horrible acts of genocide and were enslaving millions of people in the present day.

The fact that democratic states chose not to fall for that messaging, and maintained their confidence was essential to ensuring that the 20th century be dominated by relatively free nations, rather than fascism or communism.

But now, that confidence is largely gone.

A combination of ‘wokeness’, and the constant desire of statist politicians to expand their power has led much of our political class, and segments of our population, to fear freedom itself, seeing it as a weakness, rather than a strength.

Let’s look at the ways in which this fear of freedom now manifests itself in Canada today:

Restricting free speech

The Trudeau government has undertaken a massive assault on free speech.

With legislation like Bill C-10 & Bill C-36, the Liberals are attempting to centralize state control over the internet and social media.

They want to narrow the bounds of ‘acceptable’ views, and broaden the realm of what is considered ‘hate speech.’

Statist politicians obviously fear social media and the internet, because it gives everyone the ability to build up an audience and share their viewpoints, without needing the permission or assistance of the government.

Co-opting the establishment press

Related to the above point about social media and the internet, Canada’s political establishment is obviously terrified by the growth of independent media.

Where they once only had to influence and manipulate a handful of newspapers and tv networks, now they confront a decentralized network of independent organizations, writers, and content producers who are not beholden to the state.

The rise of independent media has been made possible by the internet and social media, and has weakened much of the establishment press.

In response, the Trudeau government has fostered a co-dependent relationship, where they continually give more and more taxpayer dollars to the establishment press, while the establishment press pushes a a pro-government statist narrative.

The Liberals keep the establishment press financially viable, while the establishment press keeps the Liberals politically viable.

Of course, since the media is supposed to be distrustful of the government and is supposed to hold the government accountable, the Liberals are effectively turning much of the press into an extension of the government propaganda apparatus, something which goes completely against what a free country should be.

Authoritarian political parties

Are Canadian political parties meant to be places where ideas are discussed and debated, and where members have influence?

Or, are they simply vehicles for top-down authoritarian leaders to impose their will regardless of what their membership or colleagues think?

Clearly, the latter is the case.

Unfortunately, Canada’s political parties are highly authoritarian in their structure, with immense power concentrated in party leaders.

A leader can push out their critics, deny people the right to run, revoke party memberships, and control nearly every aspect of how the party functions.

Party leaders expect their members to volunteer and donate, while seeing them as disposable and easily replaced the moment they begin to think for themselves.

This authoritarian structure is so deeply ingrained in our political parties that many people struggle to conceive how it could possibly be any different.

And yet, changing this would be quite simple.

If decisions on membership and candidates were solely controlled at the individual riding level (depriving the central party apparatus of the ability to revoke memberships or deny a candidate the right to run), our political decisions would be much more decentralized. And, if the party platform and the election platform were the same, parties wouldn’t get away with constantly promising one thing to their members and then betraying their members the moment a promise becomes ‘inconvenient.’

For that to happen Canadians across the political spectrum need to get serious about ensuring that our political parties become decentralized and truly democratic, rather than the manipulative authoritarian machines they currently are.

Eliminating economic freedom

Using the ‘climate crisis’ as a pretext to impose socialist-style restrictions, higher taxes, and wealth redistribution, our ‘leaders’ are trying to take away our economic freedom while expanding the role of the centralized state. And, with central banks enabling that agenda through printing massive amounts of money, the value of our currency is being devalued. Inflation is wiping out the earning power of Canadians, while giving statist politicians cover for their deliberate reduction of our standard of living.

Restrictions on individual rights

A discussion on how our leaders fear freedom wouldn’t be complete without discussing what has taken place over the past year and a half.

When covid-19 was completely unknown, initial lockdowns were understandable.

But “15 days to slow the spread” has become a never-ending shift towards less and less individual freedom, and more and more government control.

Initially dismissed as a ‘conspiracy theory,’ vaccine passports have become common-place, and the goalposts shift over and over again as a ‘return to normal’ is dangled in front of the populace, and then pulled away only to be replaced with more demands for compliance with government dictates.

Thus, our society becomes more and more divided, more and more rigid, and more and more beholden to the whims of power-hungry politicians, as much of the population has chosen to let fear wipe out their belief in individual rights & freedoms.

This is ruining what made Canada and the West successful

The more our politicians – and large segments of our population – fear and reject freedom, the more we come to resemble collectivist authoritarian states.

History shows that a shift towards collectivism & authoritarianism destroys individual initiative, weakens creativity and innovation, and turns the population into risk averse, docile servants of their political masters.

The Western world was successful because – for the most part – that attitude was rejected, and belief was instead placed in the power of individual freedom & economic freedom.

It worked quite well, forming the most successful civilization in history.

To turn our backs on that now would be a massive mistake, and would destroy all that Canadians throughout history have worked so hard to build.

Spencer Fernando

Photo – YouTube

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