From the time I have taken an active interest in politics, I have always wondered what influences a person to have conservative values. None of it has ever made any sense to me.
The whole idea of “me” over “we” just doesn’t occur to me. We are either all in this together or we aren’t. Having empathy and doing something about the injustice we see is the key to humanity and our collective futures.
So I decided to look at a series of conservative values and developed what looks to be their manifesto. So what goes into that set of values and beliefs? What would a conservative pledge each day? Here goes.
The “I am a conservative” pledge:
- I believe in the sanctity of life beginning at conception.
- I support the death penalty.
- Free trade is the model that will enrich and empower the masses. Military strength is the cornerstone of world peace.
- Order, tradition and governance are the foundations for civil society. I detest big government and the red tape that strangles initiative.
- I am a patriot. I love my country. There is no greater honour than to sacrifice one’s life for their country. Taxes are too high. For those taxes that can’t be eliminated, I will do all in my power to avoid. If you force more taxes on me, I will leave the country.
- I believe we must save the future for our children and our children’s children. Education should not be a right provided by the state. For those unable to pay, a post-secondary degree is a waste of precious resources.
- I believe we should be tough on crime. Access to a gun is my right. White collar crime is not on my radar.
- I believe that people with mental health issues should not be cared for; that we need more prisons and triple or quadruple bunking is efficient, not inhumane.
- I think transparency, accountability and responsibility are my guiding principles. Political appointees, corporate executives and corporations, law societies, churches should have no duty to report their financial business to taxpayers but Unions, on the other hand, should.
- I think government should be run like a business. The smaller the government the better it is.
- I love freedom of choice. I do not support a women’s right to choose. I would end free collective bargaining.
- There should be no free rides and no free lunches but workers should be able to get the representation from their union without having to pay for it.
- I think governments should be forced to review programs and expenditures. Consultants should do statistical analysis on program viability. There is no need for scientific data on climate change or demographic trends. It’s all about common sense.
- I know that business needs a positive revenue stream to be creative, meet the needs of its shareholders, customers and create jobs. I also believe government needs to lower taxes on corporations, get out of providing services and have fewer workers.
- I think austerity will put us on track for a vibrant future. Prosperity for corporate job creators is the pathway to recovery.
- I know people need jobs. More part time workers are needed to give employers more flexibility. We need to lower the cost of labour.
That’s why I am a conservative!
Confused? So am I. Here’s what I know. The conservative ideology is best summed up by U.S. billionaire Charles Koch when he said, “I want my fair share…and that’s all of it”. At least he’s honest!
But that is not what most Ontarians stand for and these certainly are not the values of OPSEU. We will continue to work together to promote the values that have built Ontario. Values like working together for the good of all and ensuring everyone has access to prosperity without stealing it from others.
Eduardo (Eddy) Almeida
First Vice-President/Treasurer, OPSEU