Some of Shakespeare’s most remembered lines from Romeo and Juliet are “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose By any other name would smell as sweet”. Juliet speaks these lines to Romeo to indicate that the names of things do not affect what they really are. And there is certainly truth in that assertion; calling good that which is evil will not make the evil, good; nor will calling that which is good evil make it less good.
What’s in a name?
There continues to be much commentary of late on the question of whether such politicians as Daniella Smith, Doug Ford or Pierre Poilievre are really “conservative”?
Of course, this begs the question of “what is a conservative?” We often hear such terms as: “fiscal conservative”; “social conservative”; “populist/libertarian conservative” or “Burkean conservative”—bantered about in an attempt to define a particular politician. Of course, politicians being people, are not always easily reduced to a simple tag ID.
In other words, “by their fruits shall ye know them”. By that reconning, it becomes clearer every day that such politicians as Doug Ford are simply not worthy of being called “conservative”. The jury, however, is still out on Smith and Poilievre.
Accordingly, instead of wasting time on trying to identify who is and who is not a “conservative” it makes more sense to look at policies that Canadians should expect of a “conservative” government.
Five policy directives to take the country in a better direction
While we appreciate that there are many issues facing government and that not everything can be addressed at once, should Poilievre and the Conservative Party form the next government, we offer five easy-to-understand policy priorities that, if acted upon, will help to identify Poilievre’s government as “conservative” and worthy of the trust of the Canadian electorate.
Moreover, these policies, if acted upon, will take Canada in a different direction from our present course of self-destruction. With a majority of Canadians believing that Canada is heading in the wrong direction, there has never been a better opportunity to clearly articulate a different direction, one that will lead to a prosperous Canada, strong and free. It is no accident that the one unifying theme to these policies is that their enactments are necessary to protect, sustain and nourish Canadian families and ultimately, Canada itself.
i. CBC and Media
Policy Objectives: 1) encourage and strengthen independent media news/entertainment programming; 2) save taxpayer dollars; 3) reduce National Debt; 4) encourage free speech/debate which are essential in a “free and democratic society” free from any suggestion of government interference.
Policy Action Items: 1) defund CBC; 2) sell-off CBC assets to maximize return; 3) proceeds of CBC asset sale be applied to reduce National Debt; 4) stop media funding by eliminating media tax credits; 5) eliminate Canada Media Fund and Canada Periodical Fund; and 6) repeal the Online Streaming Act (Bill C-11) in its entirety.
ii. Economic Recovery
Policy Objectives: to support and ensure a free, dynamic and growing economy.
Policy Action Items: 1) end corporate welfare, no more subsidies; 2) repeal carbon tax; 3) allow the development of infrastructure to encourage energy sectors in Alberta and Saskatchewan; 4) no more deficit spending; and 5) downsize government and prioritize government spending so that expenses are equal to revenues.
iii. Reform MAiD
Policy Objectives: 1) stop the institutionalization of death; 2) replace MAiD regime with palliative hospice care and support.
Policy Action Items: 1) repeal current MAiD regime in Criminal Code; 2) provide funding under the Canada Health Act for hospice care; support and encourage health care professional education that recognizes that the goal of the health care professions is to first and foremost do no harm which is recognized by preserving and protecting human life, relieving suffering and promoting healing
iv. Equal treatment for Pro-Pregnancy/Family Support Groups
Policy Objectives: support for women and families
Policy Action Items: 1) provide equal funding—dollar for dollar with money used to provide abortion services as well as given to pro-abortion advocacy groups—to pregnancy crisis centres and pro-family support groups
v. Restoring Faith in Democratic Institutions
Policy Objectives: restore faith and confidence in Canada’s democratic institutions; 2) protect and enhance Canada’s sovereignty and security
Policy Action Items: 1) stop lying; 2) independent Public Inquiry into Chinese interference in elections, government institutions, political parties, academic and research facilities and the Trudeau Foundation; 3) stop prosecutions and/or pardon of Freedom Convoy leadership and its members; 4) amend Emergencies Act to require greater Parliamentary oversite; 5) eliminate the Court Challenges Programme; 6) establish a meaningful and legitimate Foreign Agent Registry; 7) enforce Conflict of Interest laws; and 8)enforce the Lobbying Act.
Moving beyond the status quo
The above five policy priorities are by no means exhaustive of what needs to be done if Canada is to not only survive but flourish as a free, democratic, and compassionate society. Clearly, some of these priorities overlap, such as CBC/Media reform and restoring faith in democratic institutions.
Over the next few weeks, we will publish commentaries on each of the policy priorities to articulate the need for action to better protect and strengthen the family and provide a road map to getting Canada back on track—a track consistent with its traditions and values.