Blue Notes

Welcome to the PQSSR

The USSR was a confederation of Socialist Republics. They attempted to make socialist principles a reality. Soviet socialism was concerned with government controlling the economy, specifically the means of production. This is the cornerstone of Marxist philosophy.

But in Quebec the same perspective is mainly applied to language and culture; and, since the current government ran its campaign last summer, to extend that control into the area of identity.

This is not really that surprising. Once the State has intervened so deeply into the private lives of its citizens to control the language they use it is a small step to then attempt to impose official values and beliefs that make up identity.

The Soviets saw themselves as creating a new socialist human being, one who would become the manifestation of socialist ideals, one who would give up all pretenses of bourgeois individualism and become molded into the perfect image of the State.

And to do that it was first necessary to create an environment from which the new human would emerge. And as with all totalitarian projects like this the first casualty was individual freedom.

Liberal democracies have always considered this to be a basic right. And that makes perfect sense. As each person makes his or her individual choices in life that is how they grow and define themselves. To take away freedom of choice is to take away life.

But in the Soviet Union the idea of individual rights was always seen as a bourgeois illusion, and a definite threat to the collectivity. The same view holds here in Quebec. If the government were to allow the population to choose their own language and identity they might not make the right choice, the State approved choice, so that choice must be taken away.

The perspective of the Parti Quebecois has always been socialist. So it makes sense that their view would be that the only way to create a completely Quebecois society would be to create an environment from which only Quebec-identified people could emerge.

How successful this endeavor will be only time will tell. In the Soviet Union they eventually had to build a wall to keep people in. They even shot them when they tried to leave. But as long as Quebec is still in Canada we still have that option.

And for those who stick it out, there is the comforting knowledge that even the power of the Soviet State could not kill the desire for freedom. Eventually it collapsed under its own weight.

 

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