The all candidates “discussion” on poverty

29 May

Given that there is an election going on i got an email in my official emailabout an all candidaites discussion on poverty
hosted by a group of people concerned about poverty. I forwarded it to a comrade who replied to the host as oppose to me
saying lets go distribute justice for injured workers, of course that was not our only aim, but i do get a laugh thinking
about the hosts reaction. So when i get an email Ill pick up at this address im like for what? to which he replied your
the one who sent me an email, finally i run through my head and figure out what he was talking about.

The event like many others was hosted at a womans shelter, but of course none of the woman were there and the people in attendance
were the usual people, but given were it was hosted it could be stated that the candidates did consult etc etc. Of course the table
where we sat was health given our interest in the discussion etc etc and Doug Rankin was there as well we were joined by anti poverty
people concerned about what is going on in our community. Like every so called consultation this was a discussion not a debate, in other
the room for asserting ones view is narrow and we are all suppose to get along and love each other and give each other hugs and such
ignoring the impact that the desisions made have a life and death impact on our community.

Someone handed me a RSM flyer calling for a boycott of the election and asked if that was my organization cause someone was tearing them down
I said no, and of course the next question was does my organization agree or disgree with voting, as if that was the only question on the table
and politics is simply do you vote or not vote as opposed to the everyday issues that affect us. I gave a political answer then said that although
I am not RSM I understand there position and frankly given the way politics are presented I totally understand why people shympathise with that
position.

The discussion at my table was actually pretty good and possibly one of the only reasons i attended, that we are actually allowed to discuss politics
during election time, although given the cartel like politics being promoted by the big partys this too is changing.The discussion of the problems we
are facing is important, the issue of course is to take it beyound simply informing the candidates of our views and then moving on, but rather how can
one move beyond that and organize the class.

The NDP candidate joined our table and whatever I think of party system she seem genuine and interested in our what we were saying, though she kept on
hunting for “the book” which someone said was the bible that contained all the answers. Still she talked from her experiance and tried to understand
what we are saying and gave imput. My question was very julianish in the sense that it has many issues entangled and it was pointed out that my one question
was actually six questions.

The Liberal candidate came next and hung out for two minutes before break when I went and as my friend likes to refer to my so called smoozzing,”greets everyone
shakes hands and kisses babies”(I can assure you i do not kiss babies). The representative of the conservative Wettlaugher saw me and pretty much ran away.
(me and Wayne have what you call history…lol)

The event ended with the candidates speaking and then a fifteen minute informal period of smoozing. This event like so many others thrown at election time
showed the problem with the system, that once every little bit you are allowed to be consulted, give your views and simply be ignored, and despite whatever views
people have on the importance of this election it is clear that once this election is over there will be few if any “consultative” events and we will be put back
to sleep once again and told to forget politics and leave it for our betters. This shows the need of going beyond electoral politics in the sense of continueing
these discussions among our peers and finding solutions our betters care nothing for. Whatever way one votes the ballot is simply not enough in the sense that
it creates the conditions to legitimize there rule as in if you do not agree with what isnt go on why dont you wait however many years and then vote for someone
else who will ignore you again and if a majority of the liberals are relected,as it is looking like it might they will hold this above our heads as a divine mandate
from god ignoring the fact that most people are sick of all the political parties. The solution is not simply just voting this way or that way but rather looking outside
this system that offers us nothing and creating alternatives based on our material conditions. Until we take up this task of strenthening our political organizations and doing
this we will always be held hostages to these theives who no matter how well intentioned they are, will continue this charade.

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