the land of Celine and Open Source?

In Matt Asay's blog recently, he writes about how he is surprised that the Green Party of Canada actually lists Open Source as a key party principle in their Looking Forward mission statement.

What I find quite funny from Matt, is this statement -
Personally, I find it a bit ironic to see open source on a liberal party's platform. Conservative politics tends to be about smaller, local government solutions, even Libertarian in nature. Open source is the same, favoring tight customization/systems integrator or customer-tailored solutions. Liberal politics? Big government solutions strike me as akin to proprietary software.

Really? How does that statement jibe with what has happened the last 2 terms of US President Bush? He has easily created the largest government, in terms of programs and budget spending since any administration in the history of the USandA. Libertarian? That is a word that could never be used with Bush and his government. Why are American conservative voters under the illusion that they are living under a smaller government? Is the ideology of voting conservative, and calling oneself a conservative so blind to the facts in front of them? What's wrong with voting for a candidate or party (the better system i should point out ;-) that best represents what you really want in government, and not blindly voting like a lemming for what you "should" be voting for based on a label?

I don't consider Canada as being extremely liberal at all - we are a tolerant society, which is a big difference. In many ways, Canadians are very conservative with the one difference being we don't have the religious extremism that seems to permeate life, and politics in the USandA. Religious fervour and politics do not mix well here.

Are we perfect? Far from it. One of my biggest gripes with the land of snow and maple syrup:

  • Monopolistic culture. We have a small set of large companies that have enjoyed protectionist policies from every government - liberal or conservative. Examples are no DirecTV - the cable and phone companies control all media. Little to no competition in the cell phone market is also a large problem(that is changing).
I find the Green's parties stance on Open Source - the mere fact that this is mentioned in a political policy paper, very encouraging. Open Source has gone mainstream, it's here to stay. Is it the right model for all software? Of course not. There is a lot of closed, expensive software that is excellent. There is even more closed and pricey junk though. In general, for most home computing, and a lot of office or work computing, open source has a product, or various products which do the job as good, or better then the commercial alternatives. In many mission critical deployments found at the largest of companies in the world, you will find open source doing a nice job, quietly in the corner with no big hoopla.

Am I voting Green? Doubtful. They have many other policy positions which I don't agree with.

Lastly, the truly offensive comment from Matt would be to mention Celine Dion as some sort of Canadian hallmark. Now that's a low blow!


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