In Against Reform, John Pepall offers a stringent critique of proposed reforms to Canada's political institutions. Examining electoral reform, an elected or provincially appointed Senate and reduced terms for Senators, fixed election dates, recall, initiative, and parliamentary reform, including 'free votes' and parliamentary confirmation of appointments, Pepall contends that these reforms are ill-conceived and would be harmful. At the root of Pepall's critique is an argument that, in Canada today, too many voters are quick to blame institutions rather than their own conflicting interests and understandings when they do not receive what they want out of government. While considering influential factors such as academic and media bias, political fashion, and the American example, Pepall's unique and highly readable assessment takes aim at the practical and theoretical understandings of reform across party lines.
John Pepall is a writer and political commentator based in Toronto.
Foreword Acknowledgments 1 Introduction 2 If It Ain't Broke, Fix It: Fixed Election Dates 3 Out of Proportion: Proportional Representation 4 Fun with Figures 5 The People Speak? 6 How to Vote: Some Simple Ways 7 Ontario's Quiet Referendum: Electoral Reform in Ontario 8 Parliamentary Reform 9 Cross-Purposes: Parliamentary Confirmation of Appointments 10 Perpetual Elections: Recall 11 Do It Yourself: Initiative 12 The Senate 13 Let It Be Notes Index