Why We Should Ban Lobbying
Canada is a democracy like many other nations in the world. In Canada’s democracy people elect candidates who represent their ridings in the House of Commons as MPs. They’re the ones who debate and pass legislation. Most MPs are part of parties. If one party has the most seats then they can select the prime minister, the leader of Canada. There are many parts of the process in which legislature is passed and one of them, is lobbying.
The federal Lobbying Act defines lobbying as any paid communication with a public officer about: federal policy (including amending, developing or making legislation, resolutions, regulations or programs); federal grants or other financial contributions and benefits; federal contracts; or setting up a meeting between a client and a public office holder. This more or less means, giving parties money so that they do stuff for you. Does this seem fare? It is not fair, and it is not democratic. That is because lobbying is more or less, bribery. With lobbying, the man with the money is the man with the power. The people with the money often do not have interests that coincide with the majority of the population. For example, the car lobby. The car lobby successfully managed to block bill C-30, a bill which would put tighter restrictions on the auto industry and replaced it with bill S-3 which was a lesser version of the original. Things like this are seen all to often and can have dire consequences, such as pipelines, low taxes for the rich, and deregulation of harmful industries. These things lead to a worse quality of life and health risks for both wildlife and humans.
The worst part is that this is destructive of the democratic process because if not put to check or gotten rid of then the lobbies and the owners of the industries could create an oligarch around the person that they support, and supports them. This could lead to the party in power becoming much more powerful than it would’ve been and then the country could become a one party state. There are real consequences of this.
If we don’t do something about lobbying within Canada, it will slowly corrupt our government until our government will be something like that of Russia, an oligarchy. Industry will control everything and will run rampant without any regulations or taxes. The average Canadian would be worse off, living in worse conditions than without having had lobbying in the first place.