I support the Liberal seat distribution plan, if only because it is the only presentation that doesn't increase the number of MP's, an occupation which is increasingly useless, redundant and downright unnecessary.
If you're a Conservative MP, you're not allowed to speak freely, debate ideas or act in any fashion without approval from the strongman. If you're an Opposition MP, your questions are feed to you from the halls, you react with sound and fury, but you are essentially powerless, relegated to constituency work, rather than truly participating in democracy. Oh, of course, all that great work in Committee, which is essentially a pat on the head scenario, because majority rules, and those rules don't originate in those rooms.
What we really have in Canada, is a Prime Minister who more resembles a totalitarian dictator. The Prime Minister, and his team of unelected hacks, pick the Cabinet, who are really just extensions of PMO policy choices. Government MP's are feed their talking points, told their direction, should they divert in anyway they face sanction. In reality, these people just occupy seats, their true powerbase is so miniscule it doesn't deserve serious consideration. How Canada approaches the world, how Canada deals with the economy, the environment, social issues, etc, all of it resides with a small cadre of people, of which only one is a byproduct of democracy. The sad part, that is the reality for MP's elected from the government side, slap a "Opposition" label on an MP and futility takes on new meaning.
Yes, there are exceptions, a private member's bill here and there, but again there is still vote direction from the top, in many cases the true inspiration. MP's toe the party line, a line determined outside of democratic manifestations, and should they go "solo", they will be ostracized, this or that "taken away", rendered even more useless for showing any sense of independance.
Of course, MP's have more individual power in a minority, but not really, in that all decisions and emphasis is still a top down affair. With that now cemented reality in mind, any proposal which doesn't ADD more empty vessels is the preferred option. There is a certain irony today, as I read the Conservatives look to "push" through their seat distribution Bill. "Push", as in minds have been made up, the PMO has decided, so stand up Conbot MP's, get this thing passed, as for you Opposition MP's, it doesn't matter. More succinctly, a Bill to add "fairer" representation in Parliament is about to steamroll over Parliament, think about it.
The title is harsh, of COURSE MP's do many important things, particularly in their ridings, where they actually can assist people. However, when it comes to Ottawa, their supposed main emphasis, an MP in the sense of democratic representative is a intellectual farce of the highest order. Save the cash, save further dilution of already marginal influence, the Liberal plan addresses regional inequalities without the spectre of more paper tigers populating Ottawa. And, of course, the Liberal plan will receive no proper airing or debate, and isn't that the point really...