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The Political Process in Canada

The Political Process in Canada: Essays in Honour of R. MacGregor Dawson

EDITED BY J. H. Aitchison
Series: Heritage
Copyright Date: 1963
Pages: 193
  • Book Info
    The Political Process in Canada
    Book Description:

    The influence of the late R. MacGregor Dawson on political thought in Canada is still with us and will, indeed, be with us for a long time to come.

    eISBN: 978-1-4426-1508-3
    Subjects: Political Science

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
    (pp. v-viii)
  3. Table of Contents
    (pp. ix-x)
    (pp. xi-2)
  5. The Press and the Patronage: An Exploratory Operation
    (pp. 3-16)

    “At that time, in the history of the world,” Principal G. M. Grant wrote of the first decades of the nineteenth century, “it was almost impossible to be an editor without being a politician also.”¹ Grant was writing of Joseph Howe of Nova Scotia, but in terms of both time and persons his generalization has a far wider application. Some editors tarried so short a time before they abandoned the field for politics that their days among the scribes are almost forgotten: Alexander Mackenzie with theLambton Shield, David Mills with theLondon Advertiser, W. S. Fielding with the Halifax...

  6. The Ballot in the British North American Colonies
    (pp. 17-35)

    A haligonian, scanning the pages of theAcadian Recorderof July 25, 1857, would, among the advertisements for puncheons of molasses from the West Indies, wine from Madeira, and tea from Hindoostan, have noted with wry amusement the following:

    Elections sometimes attended with disastrous circumstances, a blow results in a cut or wound received from an opponent, and is proportionally severe and serious as the depth and length are deep and wide; for the purpose of healing those wounds and all others, such as scalds, cuts, sores, has Redding’s Russia Salve been prepared. It is sold at 25 cents a...

  7. The Democratic Process at Work in Canadian General Elections
    (pp. 36-63)

    Even in countries with homogeneous populations the existence of consensus, or sufficient agreement on fundamentals to permit democratic institutions to operate smoothly, cannot be taken for granted; in the diversity that is Canada the likelihood of consensus would appear more remote. In any particular election multifarious groups, disagreeing markedly in their ideas of what is significant, are asked to register their opinions at the polls. Does the over-all result reflect anything more than the wishes of that combination of groups which happens to be numerically the strongest? If not, any reasonable balance between conflict and consensus would seem to be...

  8. Group Interests in Canadian Politics
    (pp. 64-78)
    S. D. CLARK

    The growing interest in the study of the voting behaviour of the Canadian people reflects an increasing maturity in the science of politics in Canada. By means of such study we are on the way to knowing a good deal more than we now know about the kind of forces in our society that determine people’s political preferences and attachments. In particular, it may be expected that from the study of voting behaviour will come a much greater recognition of the part played in Canadian political life by such group interests as nationality, religion, and social class.

    The student of...

  9. Early Socialism in Canada
    (pp. 79-98)

    So little is yet known about the history of early socialism in Canada that it is not safe to give its origins a specific date.¹ To do so would also require positing a definition of socialism which was acceptable to those concerned, and if the history of Canadian socialism proves anything, it demonstrates that there has never been any consensus on the essential principles of the belief.

    From its infancy to the present, socialism in this country has been interpreted by its followers in various fashions, ranging from broad ethical generalizations such as “socialism is a way of life; it...

  10. The Political Ideas of J. W. Dafoe
    (pp. 99-117)

    In over sixty years as a journalist and editor, forty-three of them spent as editor of theWinnipeg Free Press, J. W. Dafoe produced something like fifteen million words of copy—the equivalent of fifty very substantial books. As editor of theFree Pressfrom 1901 until his death in 1944 he enjoyed a remarkable freedom from control and supervision and for the last twenty-odd years of this period he had complete and unrestrained editorial independence. He “became” the paper and its editorial page was the vehicle for his almost daily sermons on Canadian or world affairs. There was no...

  11. The Paradox of Power in the Saskatchewan C.C.F., 1944-1961
    (pp. 118-135)

    The C.C.F. during the Douglas regime in Saskatchewan achieved an unique juxtaposition of two opposing principles: the operation of party democracy when in power and adherence to the traditions of parliamentary government. Party democracy as proclaimed by the C.C.F. demanded rank and file control of the party leadership; parliamentary responsible government required that same party leadership, as the government, to be responsible to the legislature.

    Such conflict is inevitable when any party which upholds the principles of internal party democracy comes to power. To the extent that the party emphasizes its democratic nature, the sharpness of the conflict and the...

  12. The Evolution of Territorial Government in Canada
    (pp. 136-152)

    Macgregor dawson opens his bookThe Government of Canada¹ with a short survey of the development of “Representative and Responsible Government” in the British colonies in America, particularly in those that later joined to form the present Canada. He deals briefly with the growth of government in each province. It would not have contributed to the work he was embarking upon to have taken a side glance at those vast, thinly settled areas that were not in 1867 and are not now within provincial limits. Dawson was interested in the way that the problems, first of representative institutions, and later...

  13. Interprovincial Co-operation in Canada
    (pp. 153-170)

    “There are two main areas in which there is room for inter-governmental co-operation in a federation,” writes Professor K. C. Wheare. “There is the area of relations between the general and the regional governments, where, through the effect of the division of powers, co-operation is needed to ensure that co-ordinated and complete administration of the divided fields is attained. Then there is the area of inter-regional relations, the relation of state and state, or province and province.” With respect to the latter in Canada he states that “it has been the practice… to hold inter-provincial conferences from time to time”...

  14. Legislative Power to Implement Treaty Obligations in Canada
    (pp. 171-181)

    Principally during the decades from 1920 to 1940, Canada achieved complete independence as an international juristic person. This came about by a legal process of conventional constitutional development which has been well described and documented by the late R. MacGregor Dawson.¹ But not long after Canada had thus taken her separate place in the community of nations, it became quite clear that this was a shrinking world where international obligations were growing rapidly and must continue to grow and multiply. The position now is, quite simply, that there must be a great flowering of international law with its attendant obligations,...

  15. Political Retrospect
    (pp. 182-193)

    The approach of the Confederation centennial in 1967 has brought to public attention the fact that Canada possesses one of the world’s oldest and most stable systems of government. There are, of course, numerous conclusions that are likely to be drawn from the possession of a relatively old and well-established constitution. The most obvious one, no doubt, is that the time has come to give up the pretence that Canada is a new, young, and immature country, both as an unreal domestic myth and as a false and improper image to be offered other peoples. On the face of it,...