Friday, September 30, 2011

After the French debate

I knew going into the debate that I would stand out like a sore thumb since I was planning to speak in terms of philosophical and economic concepts. 

The other three candidates all took turns telling the audience how they would spend taxpayer money in different ways, each claiming to know better than the other what the best way was. 

They spoke of spending money on French language early childhood education.  I spoke of how the current system pushes parents into work instead of raising children and how by liberating the business from government interference most people could afford all the child care they want.

They spoke of running the money of citizens through the jaws of government before it can be used on the arts and cultural activities of the influential few.  I spoke of how culture is not a government creation but a reflection of the free will of citizens.  I spoke of how in a free market all artists receive exactly the compensation they earn from willing patrons and of how a system run by government force distorts the market and prevents free choice for both artists and patrons.

They spoke of Rules about how French must be used and I spoke of freeing people to use whatever language they want, as much as they choose.

In the last eight years McGuinty's Liberals have increased spending by 80% and have no plans to decrease it.  Hudak's PC's have stated they will reduce non-health and education spending by a whopping 2% - this is 1% of the overall budget. In a period whan the province has almost doubled its debt to about $245 billion in just eight years and is increasing this by about $33 million per day, the best they can do is try to reduce by 1% and they expect this to work?  If the PC's cannot do better than this they certainly deserve to lose this election.

I spoke in concepts and principles, then applied these to show how the big problems could all be solved by allowing people to actually cooperate to solve them making free individual choices.  The others refused to even consider the possibility that free choice could work better than centrally commanded dictates and rules.

They talked of "pushing" for more of whatever the subject of discussion was.  More money for child care.  More money for arts and culture.  More money for this and that. 

The Ottawa Citizen covered the debate but only said:
"McGruer delivered a libertarian vision of society in response to each question, saying it was not the government’s role to tell people what language to use at work or in their personal lives." 
Interesting that the writer identified my thoughts as libertarian when the Libertarian candidate did not even show for the debate.

Le Droit covered it but had little to say.

The Orleans Star covered the debate and it was in French at L'Express and at least mentioned that I spoke of the principles of a free society. My objective in repeating this mantra was to show that I was thinking with a consistent philosophy and to get people to think about what a free society actually means.  In that, at least, I was successful.

"One audience member said he thought the freedom party’s platform sounded like a dream world. They promote a society with very little government intervention and a flat tax system where no matter how one makes, income tax is the same amount for everyone. Some of their ideas are raising the speed limit on the highway to 120 kilometres an hour and to do away with the LCBO and make the purchase of alcohol available in grocery stores.

The Citizen's editorial endorsing candidates made brief mention of the 10 minute conversation I had with them:
"Freedom party candidate David McGruer says he's running not expecting to win but to help people to realize the extent that "government has taken over our lives."

I guess this was the sound bite they chose to go with out of the dozen or so I gave them.  At least it is accurate and on target.

"McGruer opened almost every response with “in a free society...” which by the end of the debate was garnering chuckles from the crowd."

The comment above is actually a pretty good representation of my ideas.  I do think that a free society would be a kind of dream world.  What rational man would want less?

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