Watch Out For The Politics

For perspective, I live in Montréal, Québec, Canada. I moved here over a year ago. After living here for a year I became a resident of Québec. What does that mean? Noticeably my taxes went up by $1645.00 a year. It is paid once a month. It is deducted from my monthly pension. This place has a lot to offer me. Living in downtown Montréal may not be everybody’s idea of peaceful living. After over sixteen months of living here, I remain! If anything I have buried my Québec roots deeper.

Politics in Canada is usually quite entertaining. It doesn’t have the drama and players that the American version has, but it attracts attention.

Pot is now legal in Canada. When the federal government legalized it last summer, the legal age was established at 18 years of age across Canada. In most provinces the age is 19. the same age as consumption of alcohol and cigarettes. In Alberta the age for all the good stuff is still 18. That’s what Québec’s age requirement was up until yesterday. Yesterday in Québec the age was raised to 21. The provincial party in power right now is the CAQ. They raised the age from 18 to 21 yesterday to make the point that pot is not safe for still developing brains of young people. So now I am speculating that these people will buy from the “dark side” once again, because they have no choice. They have been legislated out of a system that was put in place for safety and to deprive criminals of drug trade profits. The drinking age is still 18 here even though in most provinces it is 19.

With regards to pot the Québec government has done some things right. I like that retail pot is the domain of the provincial government. I say that in a place where there are liberal wine and beer purchase laws. Here, liquor is sold in provincial liquor stores. Canada is already an inconsistent patchwork of laws when it comes to cigarettes and booze. It looks like the confusion will continue.

This was a knee-jerk reaction that never got the time for thought that should have occurred. I realize that “populist” political parties seem to be in vogue right now. Quite often the leaders of these type of parties claim that their majority at the ballot box gives them the right to legislate as they see fit. This Québec government is only too quick to use the “notwithstanding clause” of the Canadian Constitution to avoid discussion or to rush legislation through.

This type of governance, however popular with the majority as the government claims, is fraught with potholes.

My concept is that democracy was not intended for the protection of the majority; it was intended for the protection of the minority from the majority. Foisting democracy upon us on the basis of who has the most similar opinions is poor governance.

This is the same group of people who quickly used the “notwithstanding clause” to legislate against the wearing of religious items in public service jobs. Justifying legislation on bogus “polls” is foolhardy at best. A majority does not imply or suggest correct behaviour. The rushed, subverted legislation of the CAQ serves to make a reversal of the law more arduous and expensive.

That’s enough about who can legally smoke pot in Québec.

More notes on life. I went east way east to Rue Langelier; to the Wal-Mart there. I like going to that area because I used to go there when I lived at métro station Frontenac. Another strong draw for me is that most of the people in this area speak French only. It is good practice for me. Well, … it is practice for me! It was a good decision to go early. On the way out little traffic, no delays. On the way back in, a little more congestion and a line was developing in the left turn onto Papineau to go to the South Shore. None of that nonsense for me. And I was back by 1100 am. I bought a basic kettle and a pot for $37.00 for both items. No more boiling water in the frying pan. And now I have a real pot to boil things in. I had wanted to buy these items for many months now. I am happy. I especially will enjoy more tea. Having one pot adds a lot of flexibility to cooking. I could have mashed potatoes!

It did stop snowing yesterday afternoon. For the last few hours the snow had been very light. I still had to clean the car off this morning. It is mild again and the snow has stopped. The signs are up to move cars off the streets they will start clearing first. Du Parc is always done a couple of days before our street. Our street is only three blocks long.

Looking back on these past few days I am grateful for the holidays. I enjoyed my time no matter what I did. I did have fish and chips one evening after walking up to Mont-Royal. At Restaurant Fameux. It was good fish.

As my schedule dictates I have been writing. Today will be my fifth day in a row writing at least 2,000 words per day. There is plenty of room for improvement because I write a good volume every day. I will be able to build stories on that volume. It is almost 61,000 words /month. I am busy. That is not an excuse to weasel out of the 2,000 per day. No matter what that word count must be met. This is not playtime. This is writing. This is everything. There is plenty to do. It is becoming a busy job. That is what I want. To get really good at school and my writing career. At this early stage of my schedule it is extremely important that I hit that 60,833 word per month quota. The doing is proof that it can be done. Writing is starting to feel normal, usual. And that is the point.

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