I have been inspired.
Being from a Quebec background, I naturally speak French. However I have lived out west for some 40 years now and although my roots are strong, I am now firmly a Westerner.
I’ve been introduced to the “Projet Liberté-Nation”, a concept developed over 5 years by Quebec Lawyer, Mr. Guy Bertrand. In this concept, he carefully lays out his plan for the Quebec of the future, the Quebec of 2030 and beyond.
Now before you completely zone out because it’s a post about Quebec, let me give you some points to consider. First, the Independence movement in Quebec has been ongoing and evolving for some 50 years. They have a wealth of experience and have learned much. We would do well to keep our friends close. Second, we have a common goal, independence. What benefits them will also benefit us.
Mr. Bertrand proposes independence, yes, but his approach is what is refreshing and inspiring. As it stands now, both federally and provincially, power is a top-down affair with the regions being told from above what they can and cannot do.
Usually, the carrot on a string method is used to motivate; either play ball or you don’t get the carrot. We in the West have been following the carrot for about 100 years now, perhaps it’s time we reviewed this?
There has been much speculation about how an independent West would be like. Albertans are solidly leading the charge, followed by Saskatchewan and Manitoba. British Columbia is lagging behind for many reasons, with Vancouver / Victoria being the main areas of resistance to independence. But why does a future independent West have to be based on a provincial model? How is the status quo working out?
For an independence to be successful, Mr. Bertrand states, it must be reborn. Hence his calling for the “République fédérale du Québec”. What? A FEDERAL republic?
Consider if you will, a Federal Republic of Western Canada. Since we would all share the same hopes and dreams of our new country, gone would be the old monikers of how the provinces are named now. Instead, a new country would be delineated and named by region. For example, The Caribou, Peace River, Okanagan, Foothills, Fraser Valley, etc. Each region would be self-governing and would have representatives in a centrally located capital. There are precedents that can be used as examples such as Switzerland’s 26 Cantons (regions).
In this way, since authority to govern flows from below, the government must follow the will of the people, all of the people.
I would submit that the idea has merit, particularly the concept that if we are to form a new country based on our values and hopes for the future, the old system must come down so we can start on a level playing field.
I’m charged up about this and will endeavor to translate and interpret Mr. Bertrand’s ideas for the future. Granted, not all of them will apply but the basic concepts are sound. Watch for more on this in future posts.
In the meantime, think about this, discuss it and let the concept occupy you, dear reader, until next time.