The first step is to identify the problem
Let the good of the people be the chief law.  Cicero
By David Pryke
By virtue of being human, we all have an equal claim to social consideration in a civilised world: justice and fairness, the right to clean water, the right to food and shelter, the right to life itself. And because we, as humans, exercise so much power on our planet, we have a moral and ethical responsibility to respect the naturally balanced existence of those other living creatures that are so crucial -- not just to our own lives, but also to the lives of our children and grandchildren.

It seems, almost, that we have abandoned this responsibility, that we are making a conscious effort to ensure our own demise. At the very least, we are sitting back and allowing others amongst our species to do it for us.

It is difficult to draw attention to or discuss only those problems that affect Canadians, or to think of them as exclusive, when we are a part of the global changes taking place. We must, however, get our own house in order; we must re-establish ourselves as a nation separate from that on the other side of our southern border.

Canada is on the edge, being prepared like lemmings for the free fall. So much has been and is being taken from us that we are getting to the point where we have less and less to lose. We are being shunted into decline, relegated to the scrap heap of humanity.

The exaltation of inequality has been done and is continuing through unemployment, underemployment, debt and bankruptcy. It is a disenfranchisement of the right to live in Canada as Canadians and to share that which is Canadian amongst ourselves and with others, as we see fit. We are being cast aside as so much waste in a technological era that should have been, and still could be, the best that mankind has ever seen.

It has been decided that not everybody can participate; not everyone can survive.

Our political system has been overtaken and corrupted to a point of dictatorship. Our vote, that purports to enable us to live in a democratic society, has been eroded to the point of paradox. It does, however, still exist. It may yet prove to be the strongest weapon in the arsenal of the people against the barrage of psychological and economic warfare that is being waged against us -- the working people, the backbone, the very substance of this country of ours. It doesn't matter whether we consider ourselves middle class or working poor, whether we are loggers, doctors, truck drivers, office workers, teachers, farmers, small business operators or retired people, we all feel battered, harassed and disillusioned by what has happened to each one of us in this war that has been a sinister part of our lives these past years.

The erosion of our way of living that has taken place is the cumulative effect of a number of processes. Paramount amongst these processes is competition. It has been said that the ultimate in competition is war.

Warfare exists in many other forms than the general association of guns and killing. We should consider these very seriously in the context of the times in which we live.

Any way we look at warfare, it is destructive. At this moment, many subtle forms of war are being waged against the people of Canada -- indeed, against the people of the world. The weapons of choice are psychological and economical, both cynical and sinister.

Psychology and economics are inexact, contrived sciences that have been co-opted to manipulate, with military precision, for the purpose of control. But then, all warfare is conducted for this purpose. All forms of warfare generate fear, and fear is uppermost in the armoury of those who, at this moment, are directing and controlling the assault on the world.

Who are these people? And, indeed, they are people -- just like you and me. They all have legs and arms, heads and bodies, and they all perform the same bodily functions as you and me. We need not be afraid to challenge them.

The difference lies in the fact that they have garnered more money, more control, more weaponry and thus more power. They have the power of life and death at will, and they are exercising that will in many parts of the world. They are the financially elite, the large corporate entities, the transnational corporations and their associated dictatorships that exist around the globe. The Bilderbergers, members of the Trilateral Commission (a name that sounds so official), are all a part of the largest accumulaion of money, wealth and power that the world has ever seen.

Globalisation is a term that has bombarded us for so long, we have accepted it as if it is some benevolent power, beyond the imagination and understanding of mere mortals.

All this has come about because of a practice that has almost disappeared from our own and world communities: co-operation. Like the suckers we are, we have believed all this time that competition is everything in our society. The top five or so per cent of our population has been planning our suppression through co-operation; and we, the other 95 per cent, have ben manipulated into co-operating with them by competing with each other -- tearing each other apart. We have become divided. We have become the victims, nationally and globally, of that age-old strategy -- divide and conquer. It seems that we have ignored the traditional maxim: "United we stand; divided we fall."

We have lost touch with honesty and trust. We have lost the ability to communicate with each other. We are afraid to talk to each other about our individual problems and circumstances,, even within families. We carry the shame that should not be ours -- of poverty, unemployment, loss of careers, loss of homes and fear for our children's futures. We watch with suppressed feelings, the people lining up at food banks, reassuring ourselves that will never be us.

We feel alone in a world where access to the abundance that exists is for those that can afford it. We live in a country where the media, owned by corporate and wealthy interests, only publishes limited or inconsequential news, propaganda and biased editorials. We live in a country seduced by the business tycoons of Bay Street, the chartered banks, the Business Council for National Interests (BCNI), the C.D. Howe and Fraser institutes and the political establishment. We live in a country where too many of our politicians have become so transparent in their corruption that it goes beyond the border of absolute contempt for the people of Canada. Integrity and truth are standards these people have long forgotten.

We tell ourselves what we have been told so many times: the world has always been like that, there's nothing we can do for change.

There is much that can be done for change -- if first we have the will, the determination to take ourselves out of the economic anarchy that exists and navigate a course that brings renewal. We can help the world. We need to show the world it can be done. But first we need to do it for ourselves.

We must not be afraid.

We, the people, need to re-group within our own minds, to re-group within our communities and to re-group within our nation. We need to recognise and heal the divisions that have caused, and still are causing, the suffering and confusion that surround us.

Canada has never, in recent history, had so many people at the bottom of the barrel; and a whole lot more will follow if the greedies have their way.

We must, at last, all become Canadians -- Aboriginal peoples, French-speaking peoples, English-speaking peoples, black people, white people, oriental people, people from the west, people from the east, people from the north. Such a distinctive grouping of cultures! Such a variety of skills and talents! Such a richness of language and expression! We are positively unique.

Unfortunately, in our midst we have another group -- a group of traitors who would sell it all for self aggrandisement and money. And they have the impudence to call themselves Canadians.

We must take them to task. We must not be afraid.
David Pryke writes from Qualicum Beach, BC