When I Am The Prime Minister of Canada
by Adam Goodwin | 2014 | Last Updated: February 9, 2014
Adam’s Note: I do not actually ever wish to be Canada’s Prime Minister. This is a metaphorical blog post.
In the 20th century (1900’s), Canada was ranked as the top country in the world to live, socialize, work, play, learn, and be a human being. Since the turn of the 21st century, Canada has quickly fallen in these rankings. Once marvelled for how it treated its people and multi-culturalism, the country now spends more celebrating its money and bank mergers.
It is time to re-think Canada’s governments. The structures. The relationships.
So, when I am Canada’s Prime Minkster…
We will devlove power to communities. We will financially support these communities. It will bring power back to the people. Where services can meet the individual needs of citizens and taxpayers. The federal government will work on educating fellow colleagues and politicians in provincial and municipal (and now, regional) governments about how to empower citizens and residents. How to meet each one’s unique and individual needs and wants.
We won’t just give these new responsibilities to the municipal government. We will help train them and educate them. Help them learn. And we will provide the money and resources. Not just some imaginary money we talk about at a news conference. Actual money. Money so communities can run their towns and cities. So they can help each and every citizen reach their full potential. The communities are going to make people reach their full potentials. They are going to create communities and environments that allow people to reach their full potential.
When people travel, rarely do they travel to a country. They say, oh, I’m going to Paris, rather than France. They say, I’m going to London, instead of England/UK. This is because communities are hubs. Communities are where people physically live, where they grow up, where they go to school and play sports and other clubs. Where they get their groceries. See their doctors.
We will re-focus on making communities the hubs of living, power, and Canadians.
I will be accessible to the media. I will want to develop strong and working relationships with the media and major journalists. Why? They will help me be accountable to the people of Canada. That is the role of a prime minister. To be the first person who always asks, what do Canadians need and want. Both now, and in the future. To represent the people. To have the best understanding of Canadians and represent this to cabinet, caucus, and the House of Commons. To be the voice of Canadians. Working with the media will help me stay connected and accountable.
A prime minister’s boss is the public. ‘Typical’ Canadians. The boss (i.e., all Canadians) has the right to know how its number one employee is doing. The media will help with this.
Many politicians are guilty of throwing around numbers in the media and to taxpayers without providing context or background. With the current unease of many countries’ economies, the economy seems to be a large focus of many federal government press conferences and announcements. As Prime Minister, I won’t just talk about how unemployment has decreased a tenth of a percentage point, or how much trade has increased in this great country’s favour over the past few months. No. I will go one step beyond this. I will move beyond measurement and evaluating the economy, and actually work daily to improve it. Why? To improve the quality of life for my boss (i.e., the taxpayers and their children).
I won’t run or grow our economy at the expense of other countries. Currently, Canada is being financed by the governments of the Southern Hemisphere. For every dollar Canada gives to these people, Canada demands anywhere from $5-12 back (for most readers, this is a large news flash) in terms of money, access to new markets, and other means of using foreign governments to fund the Canadian government. When African and South American economies surpass the Canadian market within the next thirty years, i want to have a healthy and respectful relationship with all the other countries in the world. I don’t want some government mad at Canada for our past 50 years of ignorance, disrespect, and disregard for their country.
One of the major role of any government (be it federal, provincial, regional, or municipal), is to provide a social safety net for citizens. When there’s a rainy day, to provide something to support taxpayers. If they lose their job, to provide some temporary financial benefits to continue sheltering, feeding, and clothing their children and partners (read: no set time limit). When I am Canada’s Prime Minister, I will not just change the current state of government benefits. I will revolutionize it. And not with government committees. I will give responsibility and power for change to the people. Through surveys, town halls, meetings, feedback, working with community groups, we will get the idea for the necessary and required changes to strengthen the net for all Canadians (poor, middle-class, rich). I wish that no Canadian (be it, a natural citizen, immigrant, permenant resident) would have to use the safety net. That is besides the point. It is there so people can sleep easy at night knowing it exists. This sleep will go a long way to improving the health of Canada.
Since social benefits were introduced in the mid-1900’s, they have never been revolutionzed. Only small changes here and there. We will continue to make the necessary changes, but will also completely overhaul the system. Why? To make it focused on the needs of each Canadian instead of the needs of my political party donors.
Canada’s view on criminal justice is simple. Help and support the individual. When I am Canada’s Prime Minister, we will take this even one step further. We will continue to support, help, and aid those who made a poor behaviour choice. However, we will think bigger. When I am PM, there will be no need for crime. No need for theft as all will have the wealth to purchase food, have adequate shelter and clothing. No murders as the only need for a weapon or gun would be to go hunting for wild game so guns would be left at the local hunting club house.
For those that know me, I have experience working and volunteering at food banks and organizations advocating for better food security in Canada. When food banks opened in Canada, they were meant to be temporary. Some decades later, food banks are still needed by millions of Canadians. When I am Canada’s PM, I will personally close each and every food bank in Canada. Not because I don’t think they don’t do good work, or to replace them with government services. No. I will close them because of their good work in advocating the government to meet the needs of each and every Canadian. The government will ensure each Canadian family had access to good nutritional food and a secure source of this food. We will then ask food banks to ensure we, the Canadian government, continue to provide policies and a framework to ensure no Canadian man, woman, or child goes hungry.
There is a debate in the USA surrounding minimum wages for federal government employees. As our best friend, we should continue to learn from our neighbour (even if we do not agree with Uncle Sam). As PM, I will encourage provinces to increase minimum wages to an amount an individual can live off. Where food, shelter, and clothing can be purchased. Then I will go one step further. Canada will introduce a maximum wage. Yes, a max. It won’t be an absolute amount. It will be based on a ratio of the organization’s lowest paid employee.
I am going to the be Prime Minister of Canada who makes people reflect on how they see and think about politicians. Instead of, oh great, here’s a politician, wonder how he is going to lie or stretch the truth today, people will think of politicians as their representatives of their needs. Individuals will want to meet their government representative because of Member of Parliament’s integrity, honesty, listening, and celebration of ‘normal, ordinary’ Canadians. The role of a politician will be seen in light, and not darkness. Some politicians do connect and represent their communities. However, when I am the PM, this will be a large part of the job.
A Call To Action
For Canadians, Canada’s current Prime Minister, Right Honourable Stephen Harper, is not a prime minister. He is an actor. We must elect a true Prime Minister of Canada in the next federal election. Someone who sees and understands the Canada of the past, the Canada of now, and the Canada in the future. Someone who sees the role Canada should play in helping bring humanity into and prospering in the 21st century.
Based on your reading of this blog post, you may also be interested in: Sport for All (click here).
Editor’s Note: I do not actually ever wish to be Canada’s Prime Minister. This is a metaphorical blog post.
These are one person’s thoughts and opinions. I welcome and strive to get your feedback and own thoughts. Feel free to comment below or connect with me via social media.
Adam Goodwin is a Canadian working in the United Kingdom, and is a proud shameless idealist. His parents currently work in Cairo, Egypt. He has siblings and distant family in Canada and around the rainbow nation’s only home. Follow his year+ overseas on Twitter (@adam13goodwin) and on this blog.