Jesse Velay-Vitow: “Canada, stop nannying your people”

We can watch our own health, and even if we can’t, we can face the consequences

For many people, university is a freeing experience. You might be living on your own, or living your life with a greater degree of freedom than you had in high school. You’re staying out late, drinking on Wednesdays, and skipping classes because of the previous two things. Yes, your parents may not have as much control of your life as they once had, but the government’s control is still as strong as it ever was.

Governments across the world regulate pretty much every part of your life, and our federal and provincial governments here in Canada are no exception. These parts often include activities where you’re the only potential victim, from how much exercise you have to get in high school to how hot your milk has to be cooked before you can drink it.

These kinds of regulations might be in place to keep you healthy, but shouldn’t people have the ability to make their own decisions about their bodies? If not, why doesn’t the government ban smoking, or drinking, or risky sexual practises entirely?

Because it can’t, and it knows this. Too many people smoke and drink for an outright ban to work. Just look at the absolute failure that alcohol prohibition was in every country where it’s been tried. From 1920 to 1933, the US attempted to control its citizens’ use of alcohol, leading to increases in two areas: criminal activity associated with the production and sale of liquor, and mortality rates linked to alcohol.

 

If you take away people’s freedoms too quickly, they start to notice and do everything they can to get around the barriers — often to detrimental effect. No, the more effective path is to just make it as inconvenient as possible to partake in these acts until the people decide of their own volition to stop. So laws such as plain packaging and the Smoke-Free Ontario Act are designed to nag you into compliance.

Health Canada goes as far as patrolling garage sales to ensure that “electronics are packaged with instructions for safe use.” If you think this a good idea, I’d like you to find all the instruction manuals for the electronics in your house. Manuals that you probably threw away immediately, particularly in cases where they’re easily available online.

 

I agree that things like smoking are pretty bad for your health. I’m just not willing to forcibly browbeat people into quitting. We’ve already seen attempts to extend this logic into areas as mundane as soda pop regulation outside Canada: New York City tried to limit the maximum size of a soda to 16oz.

Sure, sugary drinks cause obesity. So does chocolate, and lack of exercise. The sun causes cancer. Sex can cause STDs. Walking can cause falling, driving can cause crashing, and eating can cause choking.

Being an adult means taking on the responsibility of weighing life’s risks and rewards when making a decision. If you want to live an ascetic lifestyle, without drugs, or fatty foods or sunlight, that’s your prerogative. But don’t advocate forcing that on the entire country. It should not be the government’s responsibility to protect adults from the consequences of their own choices.

BC Libertarians Gear Up For 2017

Writing this on Christmas Eve as I am, it’s interesting to notice the calculated timing behind a recent explosion of activity from “Today’s BC Liberals”. As if perfectly stepping to a script, the BC Liberals have become a suddenly active and interventionist force in the province. With the recent slew of announcements including tax hikes and other cost increases also came the expected bounty of “free stuff” to placate voters. To my way of thinking these gifts arrive just in time for the holidays, and vote buying has never looked so sickeningly obvious.
Most alarming among the various new fees and tax hikes are the misguided Foreign Buyers Tax, the absolutely ridiculous “First Time Home Buyers” fund… and the incredible announcement that ICBC Premiums could increase as much as 42%. Property tax hikes in Vancouver which will (somehow) combat the fentanyl crisis and MSP slated for another tick upwards.
This is the modus operandi of the Liberal movement in Canada, isn’t it? “Spend as much as possible before someone stops us!” That certainly seems like the angle from the federal government, as they stack tens of billions in debt on the backs of our children. This of course comes alongside a federal dictate that forces the provinces to adopt a carbon tax scheme by 2018, reaching a mandated $50 per tonne by 2022. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says revenue generated by pricing carbon is designed to stay within each province, but this doesn’t change the fact that in the end consumers will foot the bill, at the till.
Merry Christmas, Sincerely… Socialism.
Yes. As we get ready to spend time with family and look forward to a new year, 2017 promises to be one of the best for Libertarians the world over. In countries all across the globe, people are waking up to the reality of authoritarian government, and the left-right paradigm is being slowly but surely discarded. The British Columbia Libertarian Party in particular has undergone a complete revamp over 2016, and I am proud to say we are well on our way towards an incredibly successful election season in May 2017.
Our new Leader Clayton Welwood and the executives of the Party have been working hard behind the scenes developing a full-scale campaign across the province. We have candidates from many ridings lined up at the door, waiting to be reviewed and approved by the board. It’s inspiring to see so many people stepping up to represent Libertarian ideas in BC, especially now that the Liberals have kicked into full gift-giving mode. We’ve been developing our new platform, policies, statement of principles, and other important documents, and all of these efforts come together on our brand new website.

Make no mistake – Libertarians are not going anywhere but up. Our ideas stand on firm principles, our platform is sensible and welcomes a broad range of voters to our Party. Liberty has never looked as good as it does heading into 2017. Watch our blog for steady updates as we announce candidates, platform planks and more starting this January.

 – Kyle McCormack
Board Member

BCLP Leader Clayton Welwood Addresses Housing Issues

Clayton Welwood highlights many of the problems with the new BC Liberal plan to stimulate demand in the housing market with interest-free loans for first-time home buyers.

Libertarians have a very different view of the housing problems in British Columbia; aggressive municipal zoning and provincial regulation of land allocation are strangling the SUPPLY of new homes and that in turn drives up the cost of housing.

https://youtu.be/zZ_qLCICn3s

“Libertarians are Firefighters,” Tim Moen speaks in Vancouver

Tim Moen, leader of the Libertarian Party of Canada, made an appearance on October 8th in Vancouver, British Columbia to speak to the BCLP about our role in the future of politics. During his 30 minute key note speech Moen drew an inspiring analogy between libertarians and firefighters, highlighting the destruction of property by mindless forces as a common opponent.