Politics is important. People are apathetic about politics. People are apathetic about politics because they don't see what difference their vote could possibly make. I have not voted in some time. Part of this has to do with the notion that a certain debtor could track me down using the political registry. This particular debtor made my life hell for a few years so I decided that I wasn't going to take the chance of letting them find me. I have not not voted due to apathy, however. I have been inclined to become apathetic. I have been inclined to become apathetic for many of the reasons many of you might have.
Apathy is a luxury we can no longer afford: especially given the rather undemocratic, paranoid and secretive manner in which the Minority government of Stephen Harper's Conservatives has conducted itself since taking power. Not only do we have the reprehensible Bill C-10 (see the National Post Article, the CBC, the Globe and Mail, and the blog RUK) but MacLean's magazine reports that the New Conservatives have killed an information registry that was set up under Brian Mulroney's Tories 1989 Access to Information Act. According to the article, the registry was open to the public and professionals in order to keep our Government accountable. A publicly accessible online version had been in the works beginning in 2003.
Keep in mind that Harper got in on promises to open up government, to make government more honest, transparent and accountable. Since taking power, Harper has done whatever he could to inhibit media access to government and has been unnecessarily secretive and clandestine. When Preston Manning and the Reform party was running in 1993 against Chretien and the Liberal Party and Kim Campbell and the Old Conservatives they had a slogan saying, "It is time to clean the plaque out of Ottawa". (it was attached to a a roll of dental floss) Looking at what Harper has been doing, I'd say that the slogan still stands.
Canadians have to wake up and look at what we have holding the reigns of this country and take action. Get out and vote. I say this as someone who has advocated abstention as a right and a valid means of political expression. I still believe we should have the option to vote "No Confidence" on our ballot and to have our lack of consent and lack of approval officially recognised, but until then and under this government I say vote. No Canadian on the right or the left should accept the government we have now. The New Conservatives are creating a Canada where we will have even less of a voice, even less recourse than we have now. Canada needs to be opened up further for the benefit of all Canadians. The New Conservatives are closing things up. Democracy in this country has always been weak and it is getting weaker.
Our apathy is what political slimebags count on to move their adgendas forward.