Module 1 Post 2 – Money, politics and ethics TREMBLAY

What would happen if you didn’t need any money to run for political office? While politics and capital have an uneasy relationship, they are absolutely but unofficially connected. For example ask yourself: How easy it would be to run a political campaign without large sums of capital to finance all the expenses for media, space, paraphernalia, nevermind the time involved.  The ethical problems related to the finances involved in political participation, especially at the very top levels, where much more money is involved and needed for “success”, are huge but often ignored in the name of moving forward and progress. However that capital can come with an expectation or price that is in direct contrast with the interests of the constituents who elect the person to office.

So what happens when the people are told that a system is designed to work for them, but instead is subverted instead to work against their interests? Couldn’t that be considered the same sort of exploitive tactic that was sold to trusting indigenous cultures during colonization? Unfortunately, when the people speak out against this sort of injustice, they are not portrayed much better than the groups in the past who have spoken out against capital exploitation:

Recently Stephen Harper confirmed his pro-business approach to Canadian politics (again) when he attended  a trade mission rather than take the time to address some concerns of the youngest and fastest growing demographic in Canada.

A second example of this type of capitally motivated subversion is how technology is supposed to make things cheaper and easier, but we have allowed a system  to develop which allows for huge amounts of public money to be spent on political advertisements and media. Marshall McLuhan famously said “The medium IS the message”, but if this is the case then we are willingly submitting ourselves for exploitation and considering the power and reach of modern media, the consequences could be dire:

These attack ads were run while simultaneously to the conservative party’s working towards shutting down the CBC, canada’s only publically (non corporate) owned media outlet.

The final video and article that I chose is an interview that the guardian did with David Simon the writer of the wire who talks about the war on drugs, its roots in capitally influenced public policy and how it has in fact created a situation where the constituents, in most cases the weakest members of said society, are not just mis-represented but instead exploited by the system that deigns to protect them.

June 20, 2013   No Comments

Module 1 Post 1 – Constitutional problem and challenge TREMBLAY

My focus is on how capital encourages the exploitation of cultural and technological inequities. Where once it was colonial power unafraid to exploit the trust and technological inferiority of indigenous peoples communities, the role of has now been supplemented by corporate power  unafraid to navigate the convoluted and linguistically impenetrable waters of judicial process. Worse yet, it often operates under the guise benefactor and philanthropist.

If the goal throughout the weblog process is to integrate and implement the modules directed learning  in the topic focusing phase and the initial question of the first module asks if technology is culturally neutral, my first question is: What is obfuscating our view? Put more simply, what technology exists today that most cannot understand, yet plays a huge role in how our world functions, thus allowing us to be exploited in a similar way to first nations?

The first, and most obvious answer to me was the document that was originally used to protect us from possible exploitation: The Canadian Constitution. Here is a link on how constitutional challenges work:

Iceland is the first example of a country that realized their constitution was being used against them and acted accordingly after the financial crisis of 2008:

Most political laws need updating in order to maintain relevance and combat exploitation. The constitution is no exception and for those that argue it’s a sacred document, you only need to look as far as the recent battles in the United States surrounding the second amendment. Iceland realized this and as such constructed it through crowdsourcing, (the most democratically available methodology).

YouTube Preview Image

Questions about internet availability in Iceland can be answered here:

June 20, 2013   No Comments

Connection to Research – Tremblay

I have been considering my topic for quite some time for my research focus and I keep coming back to Winston Churchill’s quote: “Those who do not learn from history, are doomed to repeat it”.

My struggle and interest within the field of education technology has always been focused on relevance and the absolute need for it when considering educational policy and spending. Out of my current understanding of the historic and colonial systematic exploitation of Canadian First Nation’s people, my question is: “How has the contemporary Globalization economic movement, with its focus on worldwide neo-liberal capitalism and the privitization/exploitation therein, compare and contrast to the conquest and exploitation of the Aboriginal people’s residing in the Americas, and more specifically Canadian First Nations.” Research materials with regards to both subjects should be plentiful as Canadians first nations exploitation (residential schools, resource claims, treaty issues, marginalization effects etc.) are still being dealt with today, (or not dealt with in the case of the Harper Government), and the documentation of the worldwide privatization of public resources is a contemporary concern, very often focusing on Aboriginal treaties/resource and land claims.

Any input or suggestions from my classmates will be valued.

June 20, 2013   No Comments