In 1939 “South of the Border” was a very popular western song sung by Gene Autry. It was about a chance meeting of two young people in Mexico. To Canadians south of the border means the U.S.A. Land of the Hot Dog, Baseball, and that even more popular game “Who has the biggest Gun”? Well who am I to say they are all nuts. I mean 340 million of them can’t be wrong now can they? Well can they? The United States of America is also the land that has perhaps the strangest political system ever. Now every four years they hold a Presidential election (Circus) where anybody can run if they can get on the ballot but the truth is the individual whose has the most money behind he or she buys the Presidency. Which is true of just about any democratic system. The difference with the U.S. is the amount of money spent is obscene. Now just like up here if you want to vote you have to register and get on the voters list. Here again though there is a difference. In Canada the enumerators come around and register you personally and they don’t ask what your party preference is. Now in the U.S. it seems you have to go out and register and do so as one of three choices, Democrat, Republican, or Independent. Like it is any ones business what your political preference is. Another difference is we do not vote for the individual but for the party and the party which gets the most seats in the Commons forms the Government. The party chooses who will be their leader and he/she becomes the Prime Minister. In our system the Commons is not the government it is above the government which consists of the P.M. and his cabinet chosen from elected members of the Commons and is subject to and accountable to the Commons. Under the Parliamentary system the Commons is supreme as it is the elected representative of the PEOPLE. Even up here though of late we seem to be having trouble convincing a bunch of western closet Republicans (Conservatives) this is so. There is of course one really big difference in our systems, we are a Constitutional Monarchy. Yep, we got a Queen who is the Head of State represented in Canada by the Governor-General who has the power to advise and consent only. The G.G is also appointed by the P.M every 5 years. The system works pretty good for us but it has its’ faults,. Like the Senate (Old Boys Club) and 1st past the post voting instead of proportional representation. Politics have been around since we first fell out of the trees and walked upright. It is as so many have said an necessary evil and perhaps one day in the future a better system will be devised. I doubt it but then one can always dream can’t one.SOUTH OF THE BORDER