Saturday, April 24, 2010

Monarchy in Canada

Democracy can only work if a public is informed, engaged & active in the democratic process. Constitutional monarchy can only work if a monarch is resident in and seen to be a part of the national daily life. When the Fathers of Confederation created Canada's unique version of constitutional monarchy, most Canadians felt a part of the greater British Empire and therefore recognized the legitimacy of a British monarch. That is not true today because of immigration from around the world and because of the efforts of successive Prime Ministers to remove the monarch from the Canadian consciousness. They have been successful by playing two cards, legitimacy based entirely on being elected & appeals to nationalism. Dependance on the ballot, as the only for of legimacy, leaves us open to what I would call 'tyranny of the majority'. We have a senate that is supposed to represent regions equally & a monarch who is supposed to represent ALL of us with equal regard. Legitimacy is based on the consent of the people, regardless of the form of selection. Voting, particularly first past the post, or 50% + one does not, in itself represent the will of the people, only that small number who voted for the elected members. I agree that in a modern Canada the British sovereign has become very foreign and has little involvement in Canadian daily life.

Canada's constitution is a reflection of the British North America Act of 1867. That document was negotiated by prominent Canadians for Canadians and was presented whole and approved whole by the British parliament to create our nation. It was written to include checks and balances on power to the various branches of government. The sovereign has executive power but must work through the House of Commons & Senate to exercise that power. The judiciary is supposed to interpret & enforce the laws of the land, independent of the government of the day. Anti-monarchy activism has been successful in the name of democracy & nationalism. The erosion of the legitimacy of the crown & the crown's representative, the Governor-General, has created a vacuum in executive authority. That has certainly been the intention of successive Prime Ministers! How can judges, senators & Governors be seen to act independently if they are dependant on the good graces of the Prime Minister's Office, who appointed them? This office is completely unelected, unconstitutionally sanctioned and operates with one purpose, to keep their boss, the Prime Minister, in power! This concentration of power in the PMO is DEFINITELY, NOT in the interest of Canadian democracy!

I believe that we need our own, resident royal family. It would make sense for that monarch to be a branch of our current sovereign's house. After all they inherited the authority of every sovereign house that has been associated with this land since before Europeans arrived. Even the First Nations and French Canadians have expressed loyalty to this same royal family at various times in our nation's history.

There is plenty of precedent for this evolution. For instance, Brazil gained it's independence and 80 years of economic & social progress when they took the heir to the Portuguese throne as their own Emperor in the early 19th century.

Of course Canadians would have to be more aware of the system we have and why it was designed that way. They would have to at least be aware that we currently ARE a constitutional monarchy & who the Queen of Canada is!

I recommend that Canadians, in defense of our heritage & our democracy lobby for the appointment of HRH Prince Andrew to the post of Governor-General of Canada. He's someone with an international reputation, experience and contacts that can help Canadian diplomacy & industry as well as a true representative of the Queen! After our royal heritage is reflected in our daily life for 5 years... Let's see then if Canadians want to reform or get rid of the monarchial system we have. We need someone who will defend the constitution from Prime Ministers who try to close parliament instead of facing criticism!

What if, when the current sovereign passes away, the new monarch was selected through a partially elective process. What if the only requirement to run for the office was to be a descendant of Canada's first Queen, Queen Victoria and be a resident of Canada? To keep the candidates above the frey, they could be required to have a group advocate on their behalf, in the election, rather than running actively themselves? The post would be for life unless resignation is requested. If the post becomes vacant then the same process could be followed or some other succession law could be enacted, with the consent of Canadians, after we have our own resident family.

This way Canada could get it's own monarch and that person or family would have the legitimacy of election as well as ancestral heritage.


  1. Bring an archaic political system into our Country, to financially support with only 35 million people? What a ridiculous notion that displays too much time on one's hands. Monarchs are phasing out but we should decide to create one here? Why not fund Canadians that are paying taxes with secured pensions, social safety net and quality of life instead?!

  2. What we have today is an archaic political system and constitutional deadlock. It would not cost any more than our current system and I'd argue that it would benefit us more than the statis quo. We would have a fully functioning Head of State of our own. This person could encourage tourism, and open doors for international deplomacy & trade. I'm sure we'd be better.

  3. This is a truly stupid article, written by someone with little understanding of the democratic process or current affairs.

    Yes, Canadian democracy is a farce, given that we have a senate that is appointed for life contingent upon showing up a couple of times a year, and which has to date, only ever turned down one bill, only to have it forced through by the G.G. and Queen (G.S.T.).

    In response to this ridiculous proposition, I propose something equally ridiculous, that we replace both the senate and the Governor General with an assembly of ground hogs that decide the country's fate based on the majority that either see or do not see their shadows.

  4. Our Governor general here in Canada it is a farce the party in power give gift to militant and they don't care if that person has a sense of military or diplomacy. I could be name and would take it I probably know more about other Country than any of those want a be.

  5. Well there are a few deposed monarchs out of work in the world, perhaps we should solicit their CV's and see what they have to offer. For example, how about ex King Faud II of Egypt. That would give us a connection with the Middle East, and having been in exile in France for many years, he probably speaks French too. There's my suggestion. Long live King Faud, King of Canada.

  6. Canadian Senators are appointed until age 75, not for life.

  7. I think that a person, who rudely and personally attacks the writer of one theory of governance, in the name of democracy, is behaving hypocritically!