Those are the three most important issues for Canadians, in that order, according to a poll released yesterday. The status-quo parties are still treating them as three separate issues, but we know better. You can’t have a healthy economy without a healthy environment, and you can’t have healthy Canadians on a sick planet.
“The economy is a wholly owned subsidiary of the environment.” – Herman Daly, Former Senior Economist, World Bank
That’s good news for the Green Party, because we’re the only ones who can speak with credibility on all three of those issues, and how they relate to each other.
“The emergence of StÃ©phane Dion as the ecological conscience of the Liberal leadership campaign and the advent of Elizabeth May as leader of the Green Party, are blowing away the NDP’s chances of portraying itself as the champion of the environment.” Chantal HÃ©bert, The Toronto Star, Sept. 13, 2006.
Our current economy is designed to use up our resources as quickly as possible. As long as we believe that “economic growth” can continue as it has for only the past millisecond of our existence, we will fail. We need to transform our economy.
Our environment is in trouble. A full two-thirds of the systems that support life on this planet are in decline. As long as environmental policies are focused exclusively on “spending money” on the environment and regulating against misaligned economic indicators, they will fail. We need to transform our outlook.
Our health system is sick. From childhood asthma in the young to a cancer epidemic in the increasingly young, costs of all kinds are rising. As long as we think we can fix our heath care system by increasing its funding in perpetuity, as we get sicker and sicker, we will fail. We need to transform the way we think about health.
Canadians are smart people, and have their priorities right. Now we’ve just got to vote like it.