Right in the centre - Revisiting the four Ps


By Ken Waddell

Neepawa Banner & Press

Principles, policy, politics and polling are four mainstays of democracy and they should be in this listed order.

Today, they are often reversed. Instead of establishing principles first, followed by policy then politics and some polling, the last becomes first. Today’s governments and political party polices are often driven by polling, not principles. Principles be damned, who needs principles when you can pay for a poll and often actually pay for the results you long to have?

For centuries, principles have been somewhat based on the Ten Commandments. Not surprising, actually, as three of the world’s most followed religions, namely Judaism, Islam and Christianity, all claim to use the Ten Commandments as basic tenets.

The problem with having the four Ps reversed is that principles should form a firm foundation and policy should follow. Once principles and policy are articulated, the politics and maybe polling help with the implementation. If you start with polling and then lather on some politics, the policies or direction will change from year to year. If polling is the driving force, then policies may even vary from day to day.

If Canadians want a remarkable lesson in establishing principles, they might want to watch two web-based presentations, linked below, on Canada’s development of the Charter of Rights. The first one is pretty boring for the first 10 minutes, but I can guarantee that both links will give a person a much better idea of what the Charter means and how it should be applied.



The big news over the past two weeks has been about the trucker convoys. As I have said many times, check things out for yourself. The following list is not mine, nor do I necessarily agree with all the statements, but they are thought provoking.

This Convoy is not just for the truckers’ mandates.

It’s for the family members banned from visiting family in nursing homes.

It’s for the censorship on all social media platforms.

It’s for all the people afraid to speak in fear of being called conspiracy theorists.

It’s for the people who didn’t want to give up their freedom of choice!  

It’s for the people who don’t want to give up their right to bear arms.

It’s for the people who don’t want to be in debt for the next 100 years.

It’s for the people who only want answers to the many questions that haven’t been answered.

It’s for the people afraid to hug their family and visit friends.

It’s for the people who want their lives back.

For the hairdressers to cut hair.

For the restaurants to serve food.

For the bars to play music.

For the students to learn.

For the kids to be free.

For people who want to work but are forced to not.

This is for the people.

This is for the silenced, honest and hardworking citizens.

This is for the thousands of surgeries cancelled.

This is for the people that died waiting for their surgery.

This is for the people who died alone in the hospital without being able to hold the hands of their loved ones.

This is for the exhausted nurses.

This is for the doctors that are going unheard.

This is for all the front line workers, delivery trucks, grocery store clerks, Public Service Workers (PSWs) who are constantly working overtime, etc.

This is for all of us.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this column are the writer’s personal views and are not to be taken as being the view of the Banner & Press staff.