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Simple answers to Complex Questions and Complex Answers to Simple Questions. In real life, I'm a Greater-Toronto (Canada) Realtor with RE/MAX Hallmark Realty Ltd, Brokerage. I first joined RE/MAX in 1983 and was first Registered to Trade in Real Estate in Ontario in 1974. Formerly known as "Two-Finger Ramblings of a Forensic Acuitant turned Community Synthesizer"

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Monday, December 01, 2008

Canada's NOT following the BNA/Constitution

First published on Mocassins on Nov 27/2006 and moved due to timeliness.
"What Executive Decision will be made, next time, since the GovGen has now agreed to prorogue the House?".
"Whose advising Her?" - anyone other than the prime beneficiaries of the 'recommendation'?


The Executive Order of Government - lost, forgotten or never learned.

Just one aspect of the "Preparing for 55 Seconds of Power "
Campaign in the London North Centre By-election

Dear Editors, Authors and Monarchist League Members,

The powers of the Canadian Executive Order of government - the Monarch, the Governor General and His/Her Privy Council (ss.9-16) -- of our 1867 system of checks-and-balances were usurped by the Rt Hon Wm Lyon Mackenzie King starting in 1940.

Since then, things have never been the same in Parliament or Canada, because the lost, forgotten or never-learned written provisions of our BNA/Constitution Acts are simply NOT being followed.

This benign neglect of the text (or, the very-human, purposeful pushing-of-the-envelope of power) culminates with today's 37% Minority in the Commons Prime Minister's Office being able to control and direct the Military, the Civil Service, the Governor General's Privy Council and (with a little stick-handling) the Senate and the Commons.

'Twas never meant to be, but it happened so long ago, that gradually, over time, our current, not-following the Constitution, de facto system has replaced the de jure provisions of the text.

Why?

Civics isn't taught (how could it be when the observable facts don't match the text), any talk about the Constitution gets rolled-back-eye reaction and knee-jerk assumption that it somehow is restricted to discussion about Quebec plus no present-day expert, player or pundit has any personal experience with any other system.

Does no one actually bother to READ the Constitution? Are all the experts, players and pundits just regurgitating what someone else wrote, or an understanding expressed by the authority-of-the-previous-day? or is there a tacit agreement, not to open this particular, foundational can of worms? - sort of a present-day Emperor's New Clothes conspiracy of rear-end covering.

How did it happen?

Under cover of the war effort Mackenzie King exacted his revenge for the refusal of Lord Byng to grant his request for a dissolution of Parliament in 1926. King merged the Office of Principal Secretary with the Office of Clerk of the Privy Council ( s.11 -advisors to the s.10 Governor General) by simultaneously appointing Arnold Danford Patrick Heeney to both posts with Order in Council (PC 1940-1121) thus ensuring that only Mackenzie King's people would be advising the GG.

N.B.King's revenge was complete when he succeed in lobbying for a Canadian to be appointed Governor General (on the PM's recommendation), since surely no mere Canadian would be so un-flattered by the Vice Regal appointment that they'd want to exercise the Executive powers of the Office as well.

Because of the war, unifying the Privy Council & the Prime Minister's Office likely seemed a good idea - consolidation of planning etc etc. But in peacetime, the concentration of power created with this Machiavellian manoeuvre was the reason behind the complaints that Diefenbaker and opposition MP's had with the over the heads of the Commons actions of C.D. Howe et al in the Pipeline Plan and in the implementation of other grand designs of the post-war re-construction.

In the 50's, parliamentarians, pundits and the general public would have remember how it used to be from their own life experience, but now, no one actually remembers first-hand - fortunately we do have the written text of the BNA/Constitution as a benchmark.

In addition, we have the historic progression of responsible government flowing from the Proclamation of 1763, the Quebec Act, the Constitutional Act of 1791, the Act of Union 1840 and the Charlottetown & Quebec versions of resolutions that formed the basis ( i.e. changes were made in London) for the BNA 1867 that was proclaimed by the Imperial government.

If you read the text of 1867, the Legislative Order with it's two chambers were designed to be inferior to the Executive - policies and programs could initiate from either, and being approved by both, were to be submitted for approval of the Executive.

The provinces too (now viewed as asymmetrically-independent, quasi-states), were designed to be inferior to the Executive - there is no distribution of Executive Powers. In addition, all provincial Bills may be Disallowed by the general government's Governor in Council ( s.13), or reserved by the Lt Governor for Executive scrutiny (s.90) or outright not assented to by the GG's appointee, the Lt Governor (s.65).

The Governor General is supposed to be the Top Dog, the Big Kahuna and to be involved in all Bills and Acts hence the imperative tradition of the Speech from the Throne.

The Vice Regal with(s.13) and/or without(s.12) an independent group of advisors (He/She could select or consult with any prior P.C. member or appoint new outsiders) vetted the proposals and was empowered either to approve the measure, withhold Assent or reserve the Bill for consideration by the Monarch-in-Council in the UK ( ss.55 & 57). Further any and every Bill could be Disallowed by the Imperial government within two years(s.56).

Notwithstanding a few amendments in 1931's Statute of Westminster, the 1947 Letters Patent of the Governor General and 1982 partial-patriation exercise (with the almost impossible to utilize Amending Formulae, entrenching a condition-bracketed Charter of Rights that we previously fully enjoyed et al), nothing has changed.

The Executive is separate and superior to the Legislative. Intentionally!

Further, notwithstanding the present-day conventional-wisdom, the Senate is superior to the Lower House, it's representatives of the propertied-class who will likely be paying the freight members face (then)stringent property ownership & net-worth qualifications/ disqualifications (sadly eroded by inflation -it's the only number in Canada not seasonally-adjusted) and a special oath (the Fifth Schedule).

The Senate stands as a "bulwark against the clamour and caprices of the mob" ( Sir James Lougheed), "to protect the regional interests and also a power of resistance to oppose the democratic element" ( G.E Cartier) and "It is the duty of the nobles to oppose the fickleness of the multitude"(Cicero -carved in oak frieze of Senate Speaker's chambers).

The Fathers of Confederation, in concert with the Imperial government knew from world-wide experience that without some superior Office or institutions to double-check (in Canada's case quadruple-checking) the actions of the Democratic Element in the Lower House (i.e. the Leaders of the party-members making the 'best ' promises to spend more on me and somehow tax someone else), short-term-motivated chaos would reign, the interests of those needing to be re-elected would be paramount, the Treasury would be depleted or over-drawn, the lunatics would be running the asylum (and its accounting department) - in short, the present situation.

What can be done?

Simply, read the Constitution for yourself (I've started on a Plain-language version to make it easier) and if you agree with my reading, demand that it's provisions be followed, yes you, yes demand. Introduction, Part 1-1867, Part 2-1982

Separate the Privy Council (reversing an Order in Council is easy) from the Cabinet and let the Prime Minister and a few of his/her top Ministers be ex officio members of the Privy Council instead of occupying every chair on every committee.

Seasonally-adjust the $4,000 Senatorial property & net-worth qualifications with no grand-fathering/mothering and watch that place snap to life with new blood (if provinces want to pre-elect their choices, why not) NB $4,000 is somewhere between $240,000 and $320,000 so it's not an impossibly high standard, but would shake out the folks who should never have been appointed)

Governor General will be too powerful to be appointed, you say? No problem, just start the restoration of the government structure to the as-written format with the Privy Council and the Senate, then work on establishing a process to elect the next Governor General. (Perhaps every other general election, with the term actually stating one year after the return of the writs allowing a break-in, transition period)

The House of Commons, well it can go back to being the assembly of everybody and every voice. Relieved of the pressure of being the source of authority for the PMO/PCO juggernaut, the MP's can debate, propose, oppose, discuss ... BE a democratically selected assembly of popular representatives instead of trained puppets, whipped into shape by the party bosses.

The Re-Confederation of Canada, in its own image, starts today, with you.

Rce
November 15, 2006


Robert Ede, on the Ballot in the London North Centre By-election on November 27, 2006, is running on an 11 point platform of fundamental awareness and education of Voters in preparation for them exercising their 55 seconds of power (casting their ballot) Point # 5 relates to the article above. His full platform is on robertede.blogspot.com.



-- Robert Ede
Independent Candidate,
London North Centre By-election - Nov 27/06.
25 Dersingham CresThornhill ONL3T 4P5
Direct 416-819-7333
London 519-282-8303
robertede.blogspot.com
stephenleacock.blogspot.com
There is no shame is turning back, when you discover you're on the wrong path. -------------------------------------------------------------------

More on this topic

Senate Reform Starts starts with the Governor General
see robertede.blogspot.com/2006/09/senate-reform-starts-with-governor.html

The Root of the Problem with Government in Canada.
see stephenleacock.blogspot.com/2005/12/root-of-problem-with-government-in.html

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