Thursday, November 10, 2005

A reprieve

In the U.S., the proposal to open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling has been pulled from a House spending-reduction bill. This move came after a group of Republicans said they would vote against the bill unless the proposal was removed.

Of course, there could still be other moves to have the drilling go ahead, but we can hope that I was wrong.

The more I read about American politics, the more I admire their system. As far as I can see, Canadian elected representatives have far less power to act independently of their party leadership. Basically, Canadian citizens get one chance in four years to influence the overall policy direction. After that, you can try talking to your MP, but unless you've got the time and resources for direct lobbying of the leaders, you're not likely to make much difference. And of course, if you live west of the Great Lakes, it's painfully obvious as you watch election results come in, that your one chance in four years doesn't amount to much.

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