Archives for: February 2008, 16


Permalink 12:01:29 pm, by Email , 667 words   English (CA)
Categories: Canadiana

A sort-of political comment on Canada and history...


Quick history lesson... In the mid-1500's through the mid-1700's, France set up colonies in what is now Canada. The French government funded these expeditions... often sending food and resources to help those in this new and often unforgiving land. Canadian's may remember this from their history books...

From 1764 through 1867, the British then looked after colonists... both French and English... and even native... to ensure stability through the North American colonies. Land was given, as were farming tools and a plethora of other help... the concept was to help a family or person make a life and livelihood for themselves, they would create a functioning and happy society that benefitted the "common wealth".

While our neighbours to the South rebelled, Canadian stayed ordered and agreeable to a form of benevolent dictatorship... which was tempered further by the rebellions of 1837. (William Lyon Mackenzie and Louis-Joseph Papineau fought for better representation in government... Mackenzie was even an admitted monarchist, but wanted rid of "appointed public servants" from the crown... and fought the entrenched Tories on the side of the "New Grits"...)

In 1867, with the country's Confederation, land privilleges and financial assistance was available to all those who wished to come to the new Commonwealth country of "The Dominion of Canada"... the concept of the "benevolent leadership" combined with democracy mixed with a genuine concern for everyone's fellow man (we were all passengers on the ship "Canada" and we all felt it when anyone had to weather a storm...) was made effectively "official".

Between then and now, institutions such as universal public health-care, welfare to protect against poverty, a national police force that shaped the very structure of our country, limited franchise with various companies were established and even re-established from before...

Basically, the concepts of our motto Peace, Order, and Good Government were enshrined...

Effectively, Canada has always been a "nanny-state"... things haven't changed... and unlike some would have us believe, "government insertion" into our lives is lower than it was 150 years ago.

Sure, life was harder then... and despite government intervention, people still starved, got sick, and died... in some cases, needlessly... but that was more because of a lack of infrastructure and the lack of modern techniques in growing crops, medicines, and transportation.

There are cases and cases of various "colonial" government situations where medicine and food were "rushed" to places that needed them (think of Wop May's flight to Fort Vermilion as an example,) where I didn't see anyone suggesting these efforts be ceased because of "wasted tax dollars" or "governmental intrusion into our daily lives".

In essence, certain bloggers and pundits bandy about this horrible "Nanny-State" of Canada... not realising that if you like Canada... if you LOVE Canada... then you have to accept, despite the tales of hardship, Canada has ALWAYS been a nanny-state... and to say otherwise is a misnomer and a lie.

Sadly, as any historian knows, to hate the "nanny-state" is to hate Canada... past and present... and most likely future.

...and many of our institutions... those that make us distinctly Canadian... are either directly or indirectly the result of our "Nanny-State"...

From Mounties to Bush-Pilots... from Insulin to Peacekeepers... Canada should be proud, not hate our "Nanny-State". It was a lifestyle our forefathers chose... and in many ways, it's what makes us who we are.

In Addenda... As a personal note, one government "contract job" in Canada that was being worked on in the 1950's would have seen the front-lines of aviation technology and development land squarely in this country... and was cancelled by a Conservative government that railed against the "Nanny-State"... thus causing a massive brain-drain sending our best and brightest engineers and scientists of the time to the United States and Britain... and the begining of the end of Canada's ultimate aviation industry (which still lives, but no where near where it should be,) and even our armed air services... and it was one of our first posts on this blog.


Pastime with Good Company

Pastyme With Good Companye

Welcome to the blog of amateur historians Matthew James Didier and Sue Darroch. Partners in life and in crime, we endeavor to entertain you with snippets from our combined historical research. Past time with good company indeed, as we shall introduce you to Kings and Knaves, Queens and Mistresses, Cons and Heroes, from our collective past......from events well known to those perhaps all but forgotten, we will do our best to bring you interesting historical factoids from around the globe. It is our belief that through understanding our past we will all gain a better perspective on our future.

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