OWS manifesto

Forums: 

Today, the OWS released a manifesto. This manifesto calls for global democracy. I think it's important we discuss this issue simply because this movement has close ties with the OWS.

Personnally, I think ''global democracy'' would be the worst thing that could ever happen. The idea of global governance is what got us all into such mess in the first place. The richs have been calling for a global governance for a long time and have yet to obtain it. Please, do not imagine that creating a much bigger and more powerfull governement will solve any problems that we might have with our current ones. And, please also consider that being canadians, our situation isn't as bad as most claim.

In my opinion, we must avoid at all cost any idea of a one-world governement or unity. If anything, decentralisation is what should be proposed instead. By decentrallizing our powers, we manage to have much more ''human'' contacts with eachother and therefor, have logical actions. 

 

Please leave your thoughts about it, whatever they may be

 

Post #1 Global Democracy

To the People:
We are stronger together than apart. Lets start with a VOX in Ottawa and go from there.
The reason we are strong is there is no leader the government can target to remove.
The reason we have support is because we have no violence, no hate at our sites.
The reason we are so united, is because our cause makes common sense.
What we have is a common goal, to make our society better.
Together we can achieve that, government / unity ....we have unity right now,
If you would like to hear more from VOX let us know with your comments.
Pace (Peace)
VOX

Global democracy

Global democracy does not mean centralised global government. "Global democracy" means political enfranchisement for everyone on earth. It means the extension of democratic rights, so that people everywhere can decide for themselves how they should be governed.

Personally, I also hope the result is not global government. It would be a grave mistake. But I don't think and am not afraid that this occupy movement will lead toward that. I believe it will lead away from it. LET NOT FEAR OF A SINGLE GLOBAL GOVERNMENT STAND IN THE WAY IN SUPPORTING A GLOBAL MOVEMENT FOR DEMOCRACY.

starting point

These movements are global trend that resonates within us all, a calling to unite and stand as a voice for the "people"

These occupations have popped up around the world and the message can vary but the unification is strong. In essence, we are working towards something greater than us, a movement so large that it will come to define our time and change the course of our planet.

There is, however, one need to begin a message that will resonate across the board. Clearly corporate greed has resulted in the negative impact of millions of lives and I for one propose the following starting point: It's time that we identify a charter of inalienable human rights for the global population. An obvious starting point is clean potable water for everyone, shelter, food and clothing. It blows my mind that it is the year 2011 and not only does poverty exist rampantly, it lives closer to more us than we think.

Thus, I propose a forum to begin outlining these undeniable rights and just as these movements resonate with us, so will these rights.

I leave you with this thought on food... Our governments in both Canada and the United states have subsidized massive amounts of crops (mainly corn) in the demand by oil conglomerates to have them produce ethanol for fuel. Sounds good right? In actuality ethanol fuel has been around for as long as oil and was always known that it would never significantly impact current energy technologies (hence why gas contains only up to 10% ethanol).

So who stands to benefit? The government by taking these massive campaign donations, inadvertently shakes the oils company's hand by subsidizing these crops and the public views it as a green movement, but how do the oil companies win if there reducing there strangle hold on energy economics?

They win because it is known fact that food has always been a key driver to currency valuation. Thus by making the availability of maize (corn) reduced, you drive majority of food costs up across the board due to scarcity, which has been the main driver in economics for all of capitalism's reign. So by lowering a essential food item you in essence drive the price of everything else around it up. i.e. oil, gas(if you don't believe this, look at the next label of a product and you will corn -fructose-or a derivative thereof in mostly everything)

This is the cycle we must break... that inflation is necessary for corporations to keep pulling profits and this is not the only example!

Please re-post this and spread the message. I will be at Occupy Ottawa for this weekend and hope to get the message out further and discuss in greater detail our future "starting point"

Tom Biela

Post#2 Economy

To the People:

Imagine a world with democracy for all, achieved through peace, in steps, as each nation agrees in turn.
Imagine a single currency, no tariffs, no exchange rates, no borders.
Imagine a world standard for health, education, safety, availability of food, and minimum wage.
Imagine a world where all people can travel where they want, in peace, safety.
Borders are an illusion, and lead to protectionism and isolation. Imagine not being able to travel from Ottawa to Gatineau, sorry there is a border there....illusion. And what makes a provincial border less imposing than a national border? Illusion.
Where we are going, no-one has been...truly and evolution towards a common good. We all see it coming. We will hear voices on our journey warning us to "stop, the world is flat, and you shall surely perish"....illusion... they have not been where we go.
Can anyone plant a seed and say how many branches a tree will have, or how many leaves it will grow, or how long it will live?....illusion.
To those camped in Ottawa on a cold, rainy night we say, "Well done!" and if the weather does drive us inside during the winter... are we not the same people, only warmer...there is no shame, but rather more opportunity to talk. Tom, Phil, and "friend" well done!

If you would like to hear more from VOX, please leave your comments.

With Pace,

VOX
V for Victory

democracy is an idealistic system

I believe the US has shown the Democracy is as much of a broken system when implemented as Communism was in the USSR.
A democratic system must protect from the Tyrrany of the Majority.
A democratic system relies on a responsible, intelligent, rational, educated and motivated populace. Hitting all those points is difficult.

In and of it self a democratic system does not protect from rights abuses. A democratic system does not protect one from incorrect information. A democreatic system does not protect one from misleading information. A democratic system does not protect from non-rational policies.

democracy is idealistic

You are right, a democratic system does not offer protection from these things. Does any system? Is there any other system worth your sacrificing your right to take part in your government?

The US has not proved democracy is a "broken system"- democracy is an ideal, not a system. The US has failed to implement democracy, or anything close to it. That the US failed to do so, does not discredit the ideal of democracy, it just discredits the US as a democracy. The same can be said for communism, which the USSR failed to implement. Assertions that the USSR was a communist state must stop. What existed there was totalitarian state-capitalism, the same system the nazis set up in Germany and Fascists set up in Italy.

It's interesting, but perhaps predictable, how much suspicion of democracy I hear at these assemblies and online for OccOtt. At confederation park, it is on display, in all its glory and ugliness.

Post#3 Democracy

To the People,

From hunter-gatherer tribal groups, through city states, through empires, kingdoms, Communism, and finally Democracy...
We have evolved. It is the label of Democracy that is now evolving to include protections not only from tyranny, violence, hate but also substantial goals are emerging of freedom of expression, tolerance, and a desire to create a better future. ff we look back at the tyranny of many leaders it was sometimes accepted as a way to extricate the state from a terrible period of time "a leader with a firm hand". What happens when the state has that much power? Power corrupts. Arrogance, greed and personal egos cloud their decisions...illusion all of it.
Humbleness, and a desire to work hard for the people you represent is the mark of a great leader. Charity and benevolence is the mark of a good person. Willingness to become involved, to have a voice, and to have hope is the mark of a true citizen.
As for democracy, "if you do not use it, you will lose it." We all must have faith that as a people, and as a group, we will find a solution to our current state of affairs by working together in peace.

Richard, well done! Why do we say "well done"? Because we encourage dialogue, truly we are VOX "voice". Through dialogue we will reach our journey together in peace.

With Pace,

VOX
V for Victory

evolution

The epic human story, a progression from hunter gatherer, legendary empires, commies and elected officials. Wow, it could make a great sci-fi story, too bad it never happened. There is always gonna be a prick in charge and a lot of sheep waiting in line to get fucked. pardon my crude language, but sitting in a park and freezing during the winter will not accomplish any thing. claiming to be the 99% accomplishes nothing if the 99% doesnt actual agree on anything. Your asking for total conformity among the human race. give it up, we'll reach that goal when the last man (or woman) is left standing

Economics and Politics are Social Studies

Economists around the world are finally and slowly comming to terms with the fact that their ideal knowledge and ideal behavior models of economic systems are incredibly flawed when applied to the real world. It is just that the real world does not operate on ideal knowledge and optimal behavior when humans are involved.
Humans are far from optimal decision makers. It takes work to gather all the knowledge that is required. It takes honset self examination to make fact based decisions on just the correct evidence. It takes a clear person to avoid prejudices and personal history. To ask that of everyone every time an issue comes up. To ignore biased media and special interst pleading.

Ok, so having rejected "democracy" I do support public participation in the political system. I support the public voice being an input. I just don't know the best way. I do know the public at large cannot hold up its responsibilities in a full democratic system.

A political system needs open fact based discussions of per-policy situtations. We need to be able to have those discussion openly and as a society. And not behind closed party doors.

All steps should be openly presnted
a) agree on what the problem to solve is
b) study the problem and look at methods of solving it
c) agree on what methods are effective and in what degree
c') early rejection of some methods as not cost effective or for other reason as not acceptable
d) agree on what is required to implement the effective methods
e) select among the evaluated effective methods based on their affects on the problem
f) implement d as policy

What I don't see in really any Political system is the pre-steps. We seem to jump right to state (f) where public money is being asked to be spent on a particular solution a particular problem. I am sure in most cases a lot of buracratic work has gone into a-d. I would like to see that presented openly for public review and comments.

I think the steps you suggest

I think the steps you suggest here are also apropo in guiding a process in agreement re: principles for Occupy.

There are various camps, focus groups on particular areas.  I'm trying to look at the common themes among Occupy here and elsewhere in the world.  Some organizations have been working on these problems and other groups can be invited to participate.  It may not be necessary to "re-invent the wheel".  For a Democracy to not be hearing the voices of the 99%, things are broken with that Democracy.  I think it's the corruption which needs to be addressed to get our MPs and PMOs working for people, environment both here and abroad (in the agreements happening globally among countries-- there's power there to negotiate a good that serves people equally across the board-- and I'm not saying 'world socialsim', I think healthy capitalism can co-exist but in it's present course, it's not sustainable, and earth and people will be, and are paying a high price, now and into the future, for short-term market-points and I think it's pure madness.

I don't want to see radical revolution, just strong evolution, and creating favourable conditions for healthy evolution.  The economic system for the time-being is supporting people's pensions; health care; education; our legal apparatus, our government (so mass homelessness of seniors and disabled is not something I'd want to see).  We are facing some economic difficulties and though we haven't got hit as hard as the States, or Greece, we are also at risk still.

Banking here, for example: 2009 (post-2008 meltdown/WS) the federal government did take $70 Billion from the public purse (what taxpayers have paid into for education, health, pensions, basic stability etc.) to bail out the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation and also used the Bank of Canada and other subsidy programs to help the banks for a total of $200 Billion. (source www.dwatch.ca/camp/actcoprsystem.html ), and with no conditions for paying it back.  In fact the banks continue to gouge us on top of that.  So there are surface reasons for doing this, mitigate against housing bubble, but also, that's come off the backs of everyday Canadians-- that's the 'social contract', pensions, health care at risk, etc.  "Social public good"

It is still timely to address these issues, as the federal Bank Act and Insurance Companies Act are under review with proposed changes coming up for 2012.  Likewise, the Canadian Business Corporations Act is also undergoing review. (Ibid) Guess who's not invited to participate?  These things have impacts on all of us.

 

What are the ideas for step "a"-- this is a process in and of itself. :)  What we are attempting here. . .

Right now, I see things at a 'brain-storming stage" and I'm curious about ways of connect some of the themes? 

Just add a quote: "If you have build castles in the air, your work need not be lost, that is where they should be.  Now put the foundations under them" ~ Henry David Thoreau.

No-one said it'd be easy ;)

But starting from principles and getting the economists and others to work stuff out to support principles.  As it stands, it's operated in a crisis mode, business as usual for the politicians, being influenced by powerful big corporate interests.  It will take a lot of active people power to re-shift the agenda back to people and environment and advoacy for healthy democractic practices. 

Anyway, I'm not a 'super-brain", I'm just bringing these things up for discussion.  I've been interested in the work of Democracy Watch (can't remember how I discovered them, might have had to do with "Contempt of Parliament" way back, concerns about undemocratic secrecy in government, abuse of powers, confusion about all the political double-talk-- 'kept in the dark and fed chit" ;)  ), but they have some interesting pragmatic resolutions which could help improve things, restore some health to our Democracy.  They seem to be getting at some of the core of the problems behind corruption in our government, undemocratically weighted Corporate Influence displacing ruling in accordance to the public good.  $ for faulty F-35s (corporate contract), while ripping off widows and disabled/aging Veterans (public good).  As they say, "The System is the Scandal".  DW is headed by Duff Conacher, some consitututional law background, etc.  I've also appreciated Maude Barlow's zeal, as a smart lady, in the know, from www.councilforcanadians.ca.  And there's probably many others who would make interesting speakers, who would have some light to shed on the issues, who've spent more time looking in greater depth at issues and resolutions.

I hope the debate remains vibrant and healthy and remains a revitalizing learning process.

 

 

49.5% voter turn out in Ontario... and you want global democracy...?
 
Instead of holding hands and hoping for world peace, let's focus on real issues that effect Canada and the U.S.
 
'Over the last 10 years, the percentage of Americans who took at least one prescription drug in the past month increased from 44% to 48%. The use of two or more drugs increased from 25% to 31%. The use of five or more drugs increased from 6% to 11%.'1
 
'A new White House study found a 400 percent jump in prescription drug abuse between 1998 and 2008. Experts blame a lack of monitoring programs as well as Americans' increasing unwillingness to bear even small pains.'2
 
'The US pharmaceutical industry is the most profitable of all businesses in the US.' 8
 
'North America is the largest regional cocaine market, with close to 40% of the global cocaine-using population. In 2008, it appears that 196 mt of pure cocaine were required to satisfy North American demand.' 3
 
'The world’s second largest flow of cocaine is directed towards Europe, and this flow has been growing rapidly. The largest national cocaine market within Europe is the United Kingdom, followed by Spain, Italy, Germany and France.' 3
 
'The world’s largest heroin market is West Europe, and about half of this market is contained in just three countries: the United Kingdom, Italy and France.' 3
 
Traditionally, different regions have had problems with different ATS. ‘Ecstasy’ has been associated with the dance club scene, initially located primarily in the Anglophone countries, but later expanding throughout Europe, the Americas, the Oceania region and many parts of East and South-East Asia. Methamphetamine has been problematic in East Asia and South-East Asia over the last decade, as well as in North America and Oceania. Amphetamine was found primarily in Europe...' 3
 
'There are two ways that drug trafficking can pose a threat to political stability. The first involves countries where insurgents and illegal armed groups draw funds from taxing, or even managing, drug production and trafficking. The second concerns countries that do not face such
a situation, but where the drug traffickers become powerful enough to take on the state through violent confrontation or high-level corruption.' 3
 
'The number of gang-related murders in Canada is on the rise, with last year's total accounting for roughly one in five of the homicides reported to police, according to a Statistics Canada report.' 4
 
'Texas law enforcement officials say several Mexican drug cartels are luring youngsters as young as 11 to work in their smuggling operations.' 5
 
'Wachovia Bank reached a $160 million settlement with the Justice Department over allegations that a failure in bank controls enabled drug traffickers to launder drug money by transferring money from Mexican currency-exchange houses to the bank. Prosecutors said the bank processed $420 billion...' 6
 
'Western Union Financial Services and the state of Arizona announced a settlement Thursday in which the company will pay $94 million to resolve a series of lawsuits over whether the money-transfer network was doing enough to combat money laundering by Mexican drug cartels and human smugglers.' 7
 
 
The problem is obvious. It's our culture. We celebrate failure, promote self destruction and accept abuse. 
 
Can call all you want,
but there's no one home,
and you're not gonna reach my telephone!
Out in the club,
and I'm sippin' that bub,
and you're not gonna reach my telephone!
 
- Lady Gaga 2010 #1 Billboard 100
 
Hey... my team on the scene full of green full of bling
Got cream in they jeans, tippin' on g-strings
...
I'm into shrums that wanna lick lick dome
Lindsay Lohan, Paris Hilton, Christina Aguilera might swallow my children
 
- Flo-Rida 2008 #1 Billboard 100
 
Best Quote of Jersey Shore Season 2, Episode 8:
 
Uncle Nino Quote: I went to the doctor he told me you gotta stop drinking, stop doing drugs & stop havin' sex, ya know what I did? I switched f*ckin' doctors!
 
I think some people who are "waking up" are doing quite the opposite. They are taking advantage of an opportunity to continue the same negative behaviour. Everyone is just coming to accept the "illusion" you built around yourself, and rejecting the "illusion" our culture built. The problems of the top are a reflection of the individual collective. If you buy and use drugs, for example, drug money and organized crime will infiltrate the institutions you depend on. I think the result of this is obvious.
 
'The rate of increase of depression among children is an astounding 23% p.a.'
 
This is a drug culture. The US and Canada are most likely the biggest drug consumers in the world. We make massive amounts of money in dealing and selling drugs on the streets. Banks are making massive amounts of money in cleaning money. Politicians are making massive amounts of money from corrupt politicians. Entertainment is selling drug culture as being acceptable. Private jails make money, healthcare rejects drug users as a personal or psychological issue.
 
"Conveniently ignored in all of the press coverage since the tragic events of Sept. 11 is the fact that on May 17 Secretary of State Colin Powell announced a gift of $43 million to the Taliban as a purported reward for its eradication of Afghanistan's opium crop this February. That, in effect, made the U.S. the Taliban's largest financial benefactor according to syndicated columnist Robert Scheer writing in The Los Angeles times on May 22. But -- as we described in FTW's March 2001 issue -- the Taliban's destruction of that crop was apparently the single most important act of economic warfare against U.S. economic interests that the Taliban had ever committed. So why the gift?" 9
 
 
 
Now. Put down the cigarette, put down the weed, put away the meds and really wake up. 
 
 
 

DIY

Grow your own, brew your own, do not impose on anyone and take care of your body! Problem solved.

The Human Condition

mowatsparty.ca,

Do you really consider the human desire for inebriation to be the underlying problem here? It seems to me that you're ignoring a few simple facts...

We an underlying and inevitable desire to experience the full spectrum of consciousness. This can also be seen in children and the animal kingdom if you look close enough. Ever wonder why children spin around in circles? Play the "choking game"? Hold their breath underwater? How about those lemurs that have an affinity for psychedelic sap? It seems that across-the-board, there's a definite natural desire for intoxication.

I'm here to argue that rather than the intoxicants being the real issue, the problem at-hand is actually the way our society educates the individual. We should be taught modesty, respect for ourselves, respect for others and to know the difference between mind-expansion and hedonism.

Your approach is... dangerous, to say the least. Many other nations and creeds have target "drug users" as "social parasites". All this does is breed hate and divide.

The Human Condition

Sorry, "We have an underlying and inevitable desire..."

"Your approach is... dangerous, to say the least. Many other nations and creeds have targeted "drug users" as "social parasites". All this does is breed hate and divide. You're beginning to sound a bit like Chairman Mao!"

Certainly.

"Do you really consider the human desire for inebriation to be the underlying problem here?"

Yes.

It directly correlates with bad politics, bad policies and money. Especially money. It also has deep, historic ties with war; see Iran-Contra. See the US troops defending poppy fields. It's a very significant and important issue for western society. Where is Oliver North today? Oh, that's him hosting pro-war television on Fox News.

I also believe our dependence on drugs is increasing. Perscription drugs are becoming more available and easier to obtain. A large portion of our population is "spaced out".

"For the first time ever, in 2006, global spending on prescription drugs topped $643 billion, even as growth slowed somewhat in Europe and North America. The United States accounts for almost half of the global pharmaceutical market, with $289 billion in annual sales followed by the EU and Japan." - Wiki

So North America is nearly half the legal drug market, and 40% of the cocain market?

"Despite this, '..the pharmaceutical industry is — and has been for years — the most profitable of all businesses in the U.S. In the annual Fortune 500 survey, the pharmaceutical industry topped the list of the most profitable industries, with a return of 17% on revenue.'" - Wiki

"The pharmaceutical and health products industry has spent more than $800 million in federal lobbying and campaign donations at the federal and state levels in the past seven years, a Center for Public Integrity investigation has found. Its lobbying operation, on which it reports spending more than $675 million, is the biggest in the nation. No other industry has spent more money to sway public policy in that period. Its combined political outlays on lobbying and campaign contributions is topped only by the insurance industry." - http://projects.publicintegrity.org/rx/report.aspx?aid=723

"I'm here to argue that rather than the intoxicants being the real issue, the problem at-hand is actually the way our society educates the individual. We should be taught modesty, respect for ourselves, respect for others and to know the difference between mind-expansion and hedonism."

What difference does it make when the Fincial system is holding money back? Creating profitable jobs selling drugs on the street, when no work is available? 

"As it stands, the U.S. trade deficit is close to $300 billion. Without the "dirty money" the U.S. economy external accounts would be totally unsustainable, living standards would plummet, the dollar would weaken, the available investment and loan capital would shrink and Washington would not be able to sustain its global empire."

Read. http://www.rense.com/general28/money.htm

You will see how much the banks gain from "dirty money".

What difference does it make, when your education system is fully backed by Big Pharma, who is going to push for an education in "using drugs safely"?

Drugs don't expand your mind. They may put you in a form of "overdrive", but you are getting high off the tissue of your own body. 

"Cocaine is a strong central nervous system stimulant that increases levels of dopamine, a brain chemical (or neurotransmitter) associated with pleasure and movement, in the brain’s reward circuit. Certain brain cells, or neurons, use dopamine to communicate. Normally, dopamine is released by a neuron in response to a pleasurable signal (e.g., the smell of good food), and then recycled back into the cell that released it, thus shutting off the signal between neurons. Cocaine acts by preventing the dopamine from being recycled, causing excessive amounts of the neurotransmitter to build up, amplifying the message to and response of the receiving neuron, and ultimately disrupting normal communication. It is this excess of dopamine that is responsible for cocaine’s euphoric effects. With repeated use, cocaine can cause long-term changes in the brain’s reward system and in other brain systems as well, which may eventually lead to addiction. "

http://www.nida.nih.gov/infofacts/cocaine.html

"Your approach is... dangerous, to say the least. "

What approach? I gave you facts. Do you know that China is biggest producer of Tobacco? Every time you light up a smoke, and say "Buy Local", your using the most addictive drug known to man, and purchasing it from the economy we blame for taking our jobs? Win.

Drug USERS are not the issue here. Health Care should be covering these problems, but they do not. We generate to much revenue off suffering. In all places, the Government, business, banking, healthcare, prisons, and individual dealers.

Drugs have a certain amount of addiction. "Nine out of 10 US dollar bills 'have traces of cocaine'. "

"More than four out of five of 37 bank notes from Canada and Brazil bore cocaine traces."

-http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/science-news/6037405/Nine-out-of-10-US-dollar-bills-have-traces-of-cocaine.html

 

Wake up man. The illusion has nothing to do with 2012, conspiracies, wars, oil, or money. The illusion is how many drugs we are exposed to, and take, regularily. "Almost Half of Americans Take At Least One Prescription Drug. "

http://usgovinfo.about.com/od/healthcare/a/usmedicated.htm

Corporate Lobbyist Threats to the Common Good

I can take a theme from what mowhatsparty.ca's discussion on the power of 'big pharma', particularly when it comes to lobbying governments (as in stat, of $8 million spent annually in federal lobbying and campaing contributions)-- I take this is an example from the States? 

Nonetheless, Corporate Lobbying in general can be one of the factors which undermine the health of our democracy.  In big pharma, lobbying efforts can result in governments enacting laws which for example can limit competition for 'alternative therapies' (it's not actually supporting even "free dependent on private corporation funding, which can trickle-down to affect quality of health care of market capitalism").  They can strip funding from hospitals and universities to make them more health care recipients.  It creates conditions of 'conflict of interest' vs. what is truly for the 'public good'. 

In big oil, they can lobby for the dismantling of environmental regulation (e.g. oil sands, and how those tailponds are allowed to leak as they do, posioning the water table, posioning wildlife, agriculture, people's well-water, posioning adjacent communities, e.g. First Nations); defund environmental watchdog agencies.  They can make superficial regulations (to appease concerned citizens and communities), laws, but not have enforceable and strong enough penalties to deter breaking of the law.  They can also make it hard for green-initiative business start-ups, possibilities of banks colluding on this?

There's countless examples of this sort of corruption.  Stateside (and here to a degree), war is profitable for some (not for the taxpayer, nor for those who returned broken, injured, loss of income for their families): so its big corps, OIL/Gas/Energy, private security companies; construction contracts (e.g. Haliburton, KBR); and for the banks. This sort of influence needs to be removed, transparent, need strong watchdog on it and enforcement of penalties which are strong enough to serve as a real deterent.

It was interesting to see Bill C-300, The Corporate Responsibility Act (one that Amnesty International also advocated) get shot down in parliament, obvious corporate lobbyist influence on how our MPs and parties vote.  For this to work on world economy, need agreements with governments abroad, equalizes competition, but not at the expense of citizen lives, etc (e.g. murdered farmers, who protested against pipelines in South America, by Canadian and other Energy/Oil partners).

Stats from Democracy Watch (a coalition of over 70 Citizen activist groups who've been working together on these problems, in existence since 1996-7):  "Canada's largest 1000 corporations spend more than $25 Billion annually on their lobbying and advertising efforts, including on about 10,000 full-time lobbyists".  Now there's only about only 500 citizen group lobbyists, $50 million annually (Source: www.dwatch.ca/camp/actcorpystem.html ).  Also, there are Union lobbyists as well (I'm not anti-union in principle re: fight for keeping wages up to levels of inflation, liveable wages, important work on workplace safety, etc.).  Somehow there needs to be a way to all work together for the common good, and that includes here as well as globally.  I see resolutions in strengthening laws and enforcement to protect environment and it's place as well, on the global level, by agreement (should equal things out, but there are challenges as capitalism is collapsing, which will take some re-think on how we do trade, and how we see value).  I support Democracy, but there are persistent threats to the health of it here and it's not been working as it's suppose to.  There are ways to advocate for concrete changes, which can prevent abuse of people, environment, the public good.  I've been a small-time environmental activist, a social activist (direct with poverty), human rights activist, and at the occasional anti-war protest (but while respecting fair treatment of our Veterans and the general concept of the 'social contract' (and it's pacening erosion).  I've smudged, prayed, meditated. ;)  I suffer disabilties presently, which limit my mobility. 

Democracy Watch

Rather than listen to me blather on, I would suggest others check out the points in the Democracy Watch campaign as I feel it's time and relevant to Occupy movements here and abroad.

Being that OWS triggered this movement (and credit to AdBusters ;) ). 

Key Areas of Study and with Concrete Resolutions (what to ask of government), include addressing:

Bank Accountability Reform

Corporate Responsibility

 

 

Other campaigns (3 million people have participated, gives rise to their democratic claims, democratically based, debate, agreement on teh problems and ways to fix them)Ethics and Honesty in Government

Closing the loopholes in the federal Accountability Act, re: lobbyists

 

Introduce clear legistlation, with clear standards of enforcement; arms-length watchdog agencies; whistle-blower protection-- to protect corruption which is damaging to the health of our democracy.  Democracy is not broken, it's the corruption within the system that's the problem.

Yes, people are manipulated to vote in certain ways, identity-politics, some having a lot of $ to manipulate well (influencing media, create divisive issues, vs. attending to the real threats facing Canadian stability).  Ad mominem attacks weigh more than critical reasoning.  Many average citizens are not paying attention to what's been happening, some only read headline news, don't dig into the issues, lack critical judgement.  They only feel things in the immediate, in cases where they are sick from industrial pollutants, or facing homelessness directly (even though many are only steps away from it).  Most people are just trying to survive the day-to-day, jobs, rent or mortgage payment, food, soccer for the kids. .. they don't see the larger context, what G20 are discussing for our futures (potential slavery for the 99%, to 'remain globally competitve).  Fear strikes and everyone trying to guard their own tiny scraps of the bigger pie and the worst can come out of others, not realizing the interdependence and we're in this together.

 

Toronto Manifesto

In Toronto, we are currently writing a manifesto, starting with the most basic building blocks. We are trying to collect as many opinions of the occupiers as possible, to ensure that it is not our voice being stated, but rather those of the masses. Here is the most basic level of agreement that I have found so far through internet scans:

- The government is responsible for the protection of its citizens and the environment.
- The government has a duty to remain sovereign (free from the influence of interest groups and external bodies)
- Upon the corruption of that duty or that sovereignty, it is the responsibility of the people to demand that it be re-instated

- The private industry is responsible for those affected by their actions (stakeholders - including nature).
- Upon corruption of that responsibility, it is the duty of the government to step in and enforce responsibility.

- It is the duty of the government to ensure the support of economically-disadvantaged populations and to offer them basic services, in order to ensure that basic human needs are met.

We are going to keep trying to measure opinions to expand on this. If anyone wants to help, e-mail macman108@hotmail.com

Just my two cents...

If I had to add items, I'd like to hear/see addressed here in Canada, a few would be things like:

Federal Transparency/Accountability
- citizens and the press should have a right to access non-security classified information, no redaction, no months of waiting for an answers nor should anyone be able to "decide" the information could be inflammatory and block the information;
- is there even such a thing as a full accounting of how the Feds spend our tax dollars every year, because I sort of doubt it but that would certainly keep people honest;

Restructure the Levels of Government
- leave powers to the Federal government that really cover all Canadians in all provinces and territories broadly, but cede other powers back to the provinces and cities where citizens actually have a chance of bringing up problems and getting them solved

Limit Federal Government Powers
- I think we need to encourage research and development in Canada, and we need to better shield government departments from possible ideological conflicts with the government that happens to be in power. They shouldn't be able to muzzle scientists, researchers or medical professions. If they want to argue their facts, do so in an appropriate forum;

Too Big To Fail Has Failed
- seems like companies and financial institutions around the world have shown that the pursuit of profit has trumped the benefit of individuals and citizens, so maybe it is time to either increase corporate taxes by a fair clip or maybe somehow tie the profit of businesses to all employees across the business. When the CEO makes 300% what his mail room employee does, something's wrong. I think it's time we decide what kind country we want for ourselves. One where people chase profit to everyone's detriment or one where we try to balance profit against well being for all.

Banks
- should fall entirely under government control and should no longer use fractional reserve banking