Sunday, March 9, 2008

Regarding Bill C-10: The Facebook Response

In the previous post, I talked about the difference between censorship and refusing to fund pornography, or other productions that one might find objectionable. I concluded that the government's job is not to provide enjoyment or entertainment, because, necessarily, people discriminate against that which they find repulsive: for example, I would never buy my neighborhood library 10 copies of "The Communist Manifesto," "Mein Kampf," or "Confessions of a Shopaholic;" but a government that was providing funding for such a library would face the Catch-22 of being accused of "censoring" the library if it did not provide funding, and supporting such vile ideologies as Fascism, Communism, and terrible-literary-tastes-ism if it did cough up the dough.

A Facebook group created to protest Bill C-10 complains:
* It is undemocratic: This controversial new provision to screen the content of productions in awarding tax credits was never debated in the House of Commons, because it was hidden away in a long, technical piece of legislation.

You know, John Milton said "When language in common use in any country becomes irregular and depraved, it is followed by their ruin and degradation." And I'm distressed to learn that that has happened to the word "democracy." Democracy describes a system of government in which majority rules - no more than that, and no less than that. There is no requirement that the participants in a democracy must know what they're doing, or even be capable of functioning at a low-level of intelligence. If our duly-elected representatives can't be bothered to read something, then they shouldn't be agreeing to pass it. There is no refuge in the excuse of ignorance: when I am handed a contract, I read the thing front-and-back, using a magnifying glass and that fluorescent spray that they use on CSI, just to be sure that there aren't any hidden clauses or fine-print restrictions that would have me inadvertently turning over my power of attorney. If I don't feel like doing that, then I don't sign the contract. So it should also be, I would hope, when you have been given the power to represent the wishes of thousands of people.

You aren't in high school anymore - you can't just eschew the reading of "Brave New World" and hope that the Coles Notes will get you through the exam.

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