June 27, 2011

NDP stands their ground

CANADA - Canada Post will be going back to work tomorrow and its about freaking time.

But we must admit mixed feelings on the matter. #1. We support the right of workers to strike. #2. However some of us are waiting for money in the mail. The mail is often one of the economic cogs. Stop it and the whole economy slows down. (Be thankful some of you, it means you aren't getting bills during the strike.)

Who do we thank for sending the Canada Post workers back to work? The Conservative government did that one. Not sure if should cheer or boo them.

And who do we thank for slowing down the process a wee bit? The NDP, led by Jack Layton, who used a political filibuster to debate the reasoning behind forcing Canada Post workers back to work.

A political filibuster is democracy in action. Actual democratic debate on the topic. It doesn't matter that it was a foregone conclusion that Harper's majority government would win the debate, its the idea that democracy is at least being done. Real debate in an effort to the message across that unions still matter, even when they annoy the bejesus out of us.

The 58 hours long debate made Stephen Harper and his cronies dead tired too. Its the longest filibuster debate about union rights in Canadian history.

And there is no winners or losers in such a debate. Just really tired MPs forced to listen to the other side speak eloquently on the rights of workers.

And yet in the end the point was made.

The majority Conservatives have made it clear what they think of unionized workers in this country. Every unionized worker in Canada will have sat up and taken notice. The Conservatives have left no doubt that they will use legislative muscle to force workers back to work, sometimes with pay cuts.

The NDP could have just rolled over on this issue. But instead they stood their ground and stood up for workers rights in Canada. Without those rights the people working such jobs would be de facto slaves and easily replaced.

And really for what cause are we demolishing the rights of workers? So people can get their mail? Mostly bills and junk mail?

To some extent it would be nice if we scrapped Canada Post entirely. No more bills by mail. No more junk mail. If someone really wants to send something important they can use email or a courier (which should have their prices regulated).

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