No, we're not talking about King Stephen Harper. That Stephen already has pretty much all the powers reserved to feudal royalty. We're talking about King Stephen…Colbert. In a new campaign, the national non-profit Democracy Watch is looking to get Canadians excited about the prospect of a new monarch for the Great White North.
I think electing Stephen Colbert as the new King of Canada is a great idea, but apparently they're not exactly serious about it. Their new campaign, put together by the socially conscious ad agency Public Inc. is meant to raise awareness about our unelected head of state, and how it keeps screwing with our democracy.
Launching such a campaign in this political climate is, I feel, pretty brazen. After all, we have Canada's self-proclaimed national rag the Globe and Mail salivating like a bunch of pedophiles about the birth of the royal brat. And not since the 19th century have we had a PM so crazy about Canada's status as a vassal state of a dead empire.
You may be asking "why in the hell should anyone care?" I take your point. It isn't as if her royal highness the Queen has all that much to do with our daily lives, apart from plastering her face all over our currency and diverting the media’s attention away from matters of actual importance every time she has another bloody jubilee.
But according to Tyler Sommers, coordinator at Democracy Watch, we need someone with a little more chutzpah lounging about Rideau Hall. And the only way to inject such chutzpah would be to have the Governor General elected.
Considering the prorogation foofaraw from a couple of years ago, I think Mr. Sommers may be on to something. If we had a GG with some guts, Harper would have had to face the music and deal with his minority situation. Twice. Instead, he played games with arcane parliamentary rules until he was able to get his precious majority. But when you're an unelected appointee without any kind of democratic mandate, it's kind of hard to play chicken with the guy who’s signing your paycheque.
So I commend Democracy Watch and Public Inc. for getting us thinking about why in the hell we're stuck with a feudal basis for the government's power. But, frankly, it wouldn't be the worst thing in the world if Stephen Colbert was actually King. Way more fun than that sour-faced stinker from across the pond.
Andreas Krebs is publisher of Riotwire.ca, where this article was originally published.
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