My name is Russell Korus, and on January 23, I'm going
to ask for your vote. I am running as a member of the Green Party in Ajax-Pickering. As a husband and a father, I care deeply about the quality of life that we are
passing on to future generations, and I believe very strongly in the bonds of family and community, having benefited profoundly
from those bonds myself while growing up. Why should you vote for
me? Because I am a different kind of politician, and I think most people are ready for a different kind of politics. I am not a career politician, and I have little interest in engaging in politics as
it has come to be known in present day Canada. The steady stream of bad news from the government, for
years on end, has deeply embedded feelings of cynicism, disillusionment and distrust within the general public. A profound
sense of apathy regarding the entire political process has never seemed more deeply ingrained within our society. For the
last few decades, the Liberals, Conservatives and NDP have taken turns leading, but fundamentally, all that is wrong with
politics never changes, and in fact only seems to get worse and worse. Politics is no longer synonymous with democracy, strong
moral leadership, or anything even remotely resembling 'in the best interests of the people'. Instead, the concept of government
in this country is now defined by scandal, corruption, abuse of power, and fiscal irresponsibility bordering on the absurd.
The discovery of yet another government official acting for the benefit of special interests at best, or outright illegally
at worst, has become an almost daily occurrence. The result of this degradation
of democracy is that we end up with a society that suffers. Although Canada is still the greatest country in the
world in which to live, that is simply not good enough. We should strive to be better.
We are taxed at some of the highest levels in the world, and yet we have a health care system in shambles, social services
are woefully inadequate, violent crime has dangerously elevated, our environment is being systematically corrupted, and overwhelmingly,
elected officials utterly fail to serve in the best interests of the very people that elected them.
When I first came upon the Green Party, and I read the Party's stance on the issues that mattered to me I was initially stunned at how obvious these concepts seemed. It was amazing. As I was reading,
I just remember thinking the whole time, 'well of course, it's just common sense, no one can argue with these concepts.' Obviously
accountability, transparency, and elimination of special interests should be fundamental to government. Every politician in
this country will agree with that. And yet, accountability, transparency and elimination of special interests is the exact
polar opposite of what our government has come to mean. I previously ran in the last federal election, and the experience was truly enlightening. So many people offered positive
encouragement and endorsement of what the Green Party stands for. As I've said many times, I challenge ANYONE to read through
the Green Party platform and say that it is not more logical than what we see in government today. Amazingly enough, the objection that I hear most often is that the Green Party is simply idealistic, and that good
government is in fact impossible. I must say, when you see just how deeply ingrained the cynicism is regarding politics and
government within our collective thoughts, it really is striking.
Think about it; a political movement emerges stating
that, within government, you CAN have accountability, so that elected representatives are answerable for the decisions and
the promises that they make. You CAN have transparency, so that the decision-making process is accessible to the public, as
well as financial records and expense reports. And you CAN fundamentally act in the best interests of your entire constituency,
by absolutely refusing to accommodate corporate special interests. And the biggest objection to this is, "It seems great,
but it'll never work. The powers that be will never let it happen. I think we'll just stick with the financially irresponsible,
special interest pandering, morally corrupt system that we have now."
Thankfully, hundreds of thousands of Canadians recognized that it is the voters that are, in fact, the
powers that be, and the only way to ever get a government that you really want is to vote for what you believe in. We garnered
4.3% of the vote, or almost 600,000 votes. Exceptionally encouraging when you consider that in 1988, the Reform Party won
2.1% of the vote or 276,535 votes and no seats. The following election in 1993 the Reform Party won 52 seats.
This is the election that we finally break through. Be a part of history. Vote Green...pass it on.
"Whatever you do will seem insignificant, but it is very important to do it." - Gandhi
"The world will not
evolve past its current state of crisis by using the same thinking that created the situation."- Einstein