by David Piney.As Minister of Justice under Pearson, Trudeau was well aware that management's first priority, inevitably, becomes the convenience of management: even at public expense.Thus his career effort was to to enshrine a code of remedial principles into Canada's administrative structure: the public's great Charter of Rights. His conclusions were insightful and far reaching, based on the supremacy of God (the real-life moral dimension of creation, and its cause and effect developmental laws), and as well, the fundamental human need for freedom. A formula in fact meant to evolve a decent, principled people with an intrinsic concern for the well-being of one another.
Trudeau's views of the state and citizen participation were shaped by his real-life knowledge that management raw expediency (authoritarianism) is lurking just around the corner.
He was constantly aware that, "there nowhere exists a power which does not seek to increase itself, it's a universal law. The state is an indispensable instrument, but it is also a threatening force, which must be held at bay, lest it oppress the individual. Participation by everyone in the control and guidance of the state is therefore a moral imperative as well as a practical necessity; politics -- as the act of preserving and expanding freedom -- becomes the most important of human activities. "
Trudeau cites Plato's dictum that "the price people pay for not concerning themselves with politics is to be governed by people worse than themselves" and he adds; "A state in which people take no interest in political matters is doomed to slavery. Moreover, a truly enlightened self-interest must combine with morality, to require that each person participate in the governance of the state with an eye to more than their own welfare. A society of egoists quickly becomes a society of slaves. For each man taken individually, is quite incapable of shaking an established government. Such governments are not in the least weakened when a dissatisfied citizen no longer agrees to obey the authorities, for they will simply put him in jail".
"To remain free, citizens must seek their well being in a social order which is just to the largest number, for only large numbers have the power to make and destroy governments."
"Thus men can live free and at peace only if their society is just."
God bless the legacy of one of Canada's greatest leaders, the author of its fledgling Just Society: Pierre Elliot Trudeau.