Canadian Democracy

Essay by Ca$hViLLeHigh School, 12th gradeA-, April 2006

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This paper will assess the condition, strengths and weaknesses of Canadian democracy in many different respects. It will evaluate how free and fair the electoral process is, if governments operate according to democratic principles, the extent to which minority rights are recognized and protected, and the ability of people to influence and control government. Furthermore, this paper will conclude by discussing if Canada is becoming more or less democratic and suggest what can be done differently to improve Canadian democracy.

Democracy, rule by the common people, has been and continues to be defined and interpreted in various ways. Over time, with the generation of new ideas, society's expectations and standards of democracy change. For this reason, there is no shared consensus in defining the democratic ideal. Although core principles of democracy are complex and multifaceted in nature, some form of it is desirable worldwide (Catt Helena p. 5). Moreover, there are three popular models of democracy; direct, deliberative and representative.

Each believe in rule by the people, rule of law, probity, and equality but differ in there conceptions of society, political beliefs, decision-making processes and the extent to which civic involvement should influence public policies in office (White G 2006).

Canadian democracy is representative; the people elect and delegate extensive powers to a few individuals to govern the countries affairs. Despite popular opinion, these officials act according to their conscience by making decisions they feel are just and desirable to serve the common good. Moreover, through access to information laws and the reports of auditor generals, representative democracies always have a mechanism for accountability and transparency (White G). Recently however, a fraction of the population has developed a growing discontent with representative democracy claiming it concentrates too much power in the hands of the Prime Minister. The PM does...