PAUL ST PIERRE AND THE LIBERTARIAN DAILY TIMES: Kudos To The Vancouver Sun—or someone lost a job today…

“1. Put no faith in any major political party. The allegedly profound philosophic differences among big parties are either trivial or imaginary. By their very nature big parties, like big newspapers, cannot lead, they can only follow what they judge to be public taste.”
—Paul St Pierre

A person after my own heart. Like ‘big newspapers’! Geezuz. Fantastic.

After having quoted a little Doris Lessing—another octogenarian—yesterday, I was shocked to read the remarkable timbre of an article in the nearly dreadful Vancouver Sun today. I say nearly dreadful because it’s better than the Vancouver Province newspaper, which is simply dreadful. Every time someone calls me on the phone and asks me to subscribe, I ask them if they sell the Guardian. They never know what I’m talking about, alas…

Anyway, today, a fantastic and bold article by Paul St Pierre, an author and former member of parliament. I don’t know how it made the paper—maybe a last favour for a former columnist. Maybe someone there just got sick of what’s normally in the paper. Page A9 is one reason it made it—because in a strange way, it’s front page news—but still, to the Sun I send kudos.

I also understand that if a mainstream rag prints a tiny slice of outer spectrum views, that brief commentary allows for the grand statement of a rich democracy, as the bullshit is plied on 99.937% of the time otherwise. By the way, I say ‘outer spectrum views’ with the qualification that most of the general population is onside with St Pierre, lacking respect or faith in either Big Politics or Big Media. In short, we all somehow know, as St Pierre points out, we are being fed, and in turn speak by rote, “bullshit.”

He writes:

That is exactly what happened, in the United States as in Canada. The Americans try to disguise their wretched state of submission to the rulers by hooting and shrieking the word freedom, tossing firecrackers around and, most recently—the supreme irony—calling unconstitutional and oppressive legislation The Patriot Act. An American must bullshit. His health demands it. If he cannot bullshit a foreigner he will bullshit himself, but he has to do it.

Print something similar, on the front page, for about a year straight, and we might even moved towards ideas that are creative, freeing, inspired and compassionate, as a community. Heck, we’re too sheltered to be truly environmentally intelligent, let alone see the bars around us.

Although St Pierre is a former Liberal, the piece here has, as is his style, a huge libertarian slant.

PARADOX: NO RUNNING FREE IN THE FREE WORLD

I was reminded immediately of how, in a bizarre sort of devolution, kids no longer are let outside to play on their own, to go where they want, to explore with freedom. Have you noticed this drastic shift? They are watched and curtailed at every turn, invariably with the best of parental intentions.

I used to think this change happened after the awful abduction and murders of children in Vancouver and area by the heinous Clifford Richard Olsen in the early 1980s. This cleared parks and playgrounds for awhile, and when they were refilled, it was with parental guidance, like life had become a restricted movie.

In addition I thought media played a big role in this no-longer-free-to-play-without-supervision world, with all their increased details and coverage of murder, abductions, and violent crime, in general.

But today I was wondering if this protection and fear of letting children (heck, and even ourselves) be more free to play, unsupervised, like we used to for hours, all day, only thirty or so years ago, is, combined with media, an internalization of the increase in laws and protection, and the subconscious dynamic of living with a subtle yet omnipresent Big Brother—to use Paul St Pierre’s use of the term.

Anyway, consider that.

AN OLD COWBOY

The fiery, courageous, pleading, last rites piece by St Pierre is entitled A Voice From The Grave’s Edge, a double entendre referring to himself and limited freedoms and increased criminality in general.

Here are a couple of excerpts, but please read the whole thing:

Our Canada is now very close to a condition in which everything that is not compulsory is forbidden. We have become prisoners of the state. Like modern jail prisoners, all our needs for balanced diet, climate-controlled shelter, approved and tested medication, mental health counselling, higher education, suitable entertainment, grief counselling and consensual safe sex are available free. The inmate lacks only freedom itself.

When I was young, Canadians were born almost free; now we are born in manacles of silk and gold.

To the recent generations, this is hyperbole. I understand that. I also understand that young people cannot be expected to miss freedom. How can you miss what you never had? But a few of the old may remember and a few of the young might feel the tug of curiosity. I hope so.

This is not entirely true, and there are grand exceptions. Many great social issues have borne greater freedom for certain groups of people (gender issues, race issues, sexual orientation issues and so on). Still…

Scarcely a day passes when our rulers do not devise some new law or regulation having the force of law, complete with fines and prison penalties. No one knows how many there are. Even the rulers couldn’t find the number when they tried a few years ago. Suffice to say there are enough that everyone is a criminal now.

Here are a few of his numbered points. Again, read the article for yourself.

5. Never forget this: Any government may lie, cheat, murder and steal, for “the public good.”

9. Fight for the Internet. It may be our last, best hope. Oppose, evade or sabotage every state attempt to control it, yes, even at the cost of permitting such obvious social evils as racial bigotry or child pornography. It is the common man’s strongest available instrument and will be the target of sophisticated attacks by all rulers.

10. Support the Canadian Civil Liberties Union. Future generations will see it as a lonely champion of liberty during long, dark years. When it supports a cause that you find obnoxious, trivial or dangerous, increase your donation.

This is written in the newspaper—a huge monopolized corporation paper filled with, well, filler!

For the record, Libertarianism is a sort of offshoot of the brutally misunderstood political idea known as Anarchism. Libertarianism has a Left and Right slant, so-called, and also both a compassionate and mean-spirited, bigoted slant of uber-individualism.

At its most compassionate and expansive, Libertarianism offers a lot. Lysander Spooner, A J Nock. Even Ron Paul.

As for the article, it offers essential food for thought. Are we as free as we think? Are we as imprisoned as St Pierre suggests?

Mr St. Pierre, at 85, I say with all due respect, thanks for the bold words and the big balls, unstoppable from a lifetime of living, and thanks for having whatever credentials needed to get the piece published.

Here’s to individuality. Here’s to solidarity. Here’s to freedom. Here’s to love.

Pete xoxo

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One Response to “PAUL ST PIERRE AND THE LIBERTARIAN DAILY TIMES: Kudos To The Vancouver Sun—or someone lost a job today…”

  1. philip mccormack says:

    Hi Pete,What an excellent blog on Paul St Pierre. Section 3 requires more input. In the past 20 years ((actually) since 1982 Charter of no rights and Freedoms my input,)) we began a changeover from the British system of justice, in which every man is innocent until proven guilty, to the continental European, system often called the Napoleonic Code, in which the state obliges the citizen to prove innocence of anything the state may choose to suspect.
    We have now reached the stage section 11 (f) C of R and F where Trial by Jury is illegally no longer a choice; we get summary judgement, that is in any case brought against a citizen by the government the judge is the final arbiter. For example more than 98% of tax cases are won by the state. Remember the judge is appointed by the government, is paid by the government, has an indexed pension from the government and depends on it for promotion. Is this a conflict of interest?
    YES it is. Added to this it enables lawyers to make a lot more money.
    http://www.democracydefined.org/2trialbyjury.htm When I read at this site, it’s free, I learned and inwardly digested; this is Trial by Jury this is what upholds freedom and democracy. Supreme Power vested in the people.How was removal of T by J brought about? By our politicians, a considerable number of whom are lawyers, started by Pierre Trudeau, a lawyer, who was also a communist. Lots of love Dad

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