I want those in politics to do all they can to educate themselves. It starts, I’m sure, with a steep learning curve about the workings of government and how to be effective within it.
Then there must be ongoing learning about the issues. A good representative of the people will expose themselves to information and arguments from all sides of an issue.
I see members of the NDP and Liberal parties at films, speakers and public information sessions all the time. I have yet to see a Yukon Party politician at these events. My conclusion, therefore, is that they may only want to hear information that supports their own biased agendas.
I want those in politics to be good at listening – to everyone. Listening means that 8,000 signatures on a petition against fracking in the Yukon, for instance, is a loud and clear message to be acknowledged.
Listening means taking the time to understand and adapt strategies to the Umbrella Final Agreement, rather than trying to sneak around it. Listening means taking into account the questions and concerns of the opposition, rather than talking around them or blowing them off.
I don’t see Yukon Party politicians displaying evidence of listening. My conclusion, therefore, is that they’re not very interested in democracy in action.
I want those in politics to be forward-thinking. And I mean further ahead than the next election. (We’ve seen lots of behaviour lately from the federal and territorial conservatives that is clearly meant to sway voters in the short term.)
Anyone with eyes in their head and a thoughtful brain in their skull can see that the fossil fuel era is coming to an end. Deposits are dwindling. The cost of tapping harder-to-reach resources makes it barely worth the effort, financially. The increased number and intensity of weather-related disasters around the world make it clear we need to make the switch to clean energy immediately.
I don’t see Yukon Party politicians getting excited by the possibility that our sparsely populated territory could be a leader in Canada, and beyond, in clean energy production. Quite the contrary. I see them licking their chops at the possibility of bringing a methane-spewing, water-wasting, toxin-injecting, health-damaging industry to the Yukon.
My conclusion? Time to throw them out. Time to vote in honest, respectful people who educate themselves, listen, and think ahead to solutions that will benefit all Yukoners and the amazing environment we live in.