On November 2nd the essence of forty years of philosophical determinism will be on trial in elections held in the United States. Born out of the intense events and cultural tides of the sixties, a progressively overwhelming liberalist agenda has consumed the consensus of every day life in the Americas. This philosophy of reduction of individual responsibility, overarching governmental regulations on life activity , policing the “correctness” of personal opinion and thought, and collectivist “balancing” of the individual’s desire for personal advancement has expressed itself in the governments we currently have and will be judging with our vote. It has expressed itself on issues as “profound” as the temperature of the earth and man’s ability to effect and ultimately control it. It has expressed itself on issues as “small” as the lack of each individual human’s ability to take personal account of his or her own actions without constant maintenance from an outside governmental guidance. It is defined by the phrase “It takes a village” . It has led to the sense by many Americans that their life is no longer their own to determine, and that government, rather than the individual, has become the expression of life experience from cradle to grave.
Whatever. Enter Rob Ford.
Who is Rob Ford you ask? Rob Ford is the newly elected mayor of the city of Toronto, Canada, elected overwhelmingly on October 25, 2010 by the citizens of Toronto completely tired of the above paragraph’s consensus. He is the antithesis of the liberal agenda that has placed Toronto in the status of “legendary” city for all like minded to gaze upon in awe and wonder, a city full of bike paths on streets, mandated political correctness, coffee shops, drug parks, film festivals, extended city worker benefits, immigrant cultural dominance, and a dense fee and tax structure to pay for it all. Rob Ford is the proverbial “bull in the china shop” , a 41 year old overweight, inarticulate, in your face Toronto councilman who for years railed against the direction of the city government’s desire to become a “world” city, the perks of governmental officials, the wasteful “services” provided to all comers, the “improvement projects” without end to the taxpayer. He based his election drive on defeating a governmental philosophy that worried more about solar panels on cars than garbage and snow removal for citizens. His slogan “Get Off the Gravy Train” featured a well dressed pig driving a train, and is the best selling t-shirt in town. He could care less about being in government as a vocation, like being a doctor or a teacher, or a plumber. He sees his job as putting the citizen taxpayer first, restoring governmental fundamentals, reducing waste, and eliminating unnecessary taxes – and that’s it. He is, in short, the nightmare of nightmares to Toronto’s liberal elite, and his tenure as mayor is going to be nothing short of fingernails on a chalkboard for them.
The larger question to ask revolves around as to whether 2010 is a brief blip of voter angst or the initiation of the fracture of the bond between the voter and the government that led to the process of progressive establishment of liberalist philosophy over the last 40 years. In the United States this has expressed itself in the “tea party”, first derided as racists and country bumpkins, and now feared as a real threat to the presumed “intellectual” dominance of the current elite progressive agenda. The reality is that Canada has no “tea party” conceptualization. It has a liberal stream of consciousness, a strong abiding sense of the importance of “village”, and has been much more comfortable with socialist governmental structures than the United States traditionally has been. Mr Rob Ford shows, however, that there is a limit in democracies to the tolerance of the voter for substituting idealism for competence, correctness for common sense, and redistribution for individual endeavor. November 2nd looks to be only our own expression of what is coming to be a world wide phenomena.