Tommy Douglas was voted to be the Greatest Canadian ever a couple of years ago. Tommy Douglas was the man who brought single payer health care to Canada along with a lot of other great accomplishments.
This speech by Tommy Douglas in 1944 is relevant to everything that is happening worldwide right now: the protests in the midwest, the freedom movements in North Africa, the Middle East and China. Wikileaks, Anonymous, the PIIGS etc. (Ireland is one of those I's). I think everyone should review this classic speech now. It will be true 1000 years from now. The speech is timeless.
It seems to me that the internet and social media is currently bringing about a worldwide revolution to reduce the inequities of the status quo. I think Julian Assange will probably win the Nobel Peace Prize in a few years. Through Wikileaks he has inspired people to speak out and tell the truth. Though wikileaks passively requested information and provided a mechanism to tell the world, Anonymous is actively seeking information. The combination of the two is freedom of information.
That leads to "I'm mad as hell, and I'm not going to take it anymore!" in the public at large.
Oh the unintended consequences of trying to build a communication network that could survive a nuclear war.
Makes me smile.
update: transcript of the Mouseland speech as per request in the comments
This is the story of a place called Mouseland. Mouseland was a place where all the little mice lived and played, were born and died. And they lived much the same as you and I do.
They even had a parliament. And every four years they had an election. Used to walk to the polls and cast their ballots. Some of them even got a ride to the polls. And got a ride for the next four years afterwards, too. Just like you and me. And every time on election day all the little mice used to go to the ballot box and they used to elect a government.
A government made up of big, fat, black cats.
Now if you think it strange that mice should elect a government of cats, look at the history of Canada for the last 90 years and maybe you'll see they weren't any stupider then us.
Now I'm not saying anything against the cats. They conducted their government with dignity. They passed good laws - that is, laws that were good for cats. But the laws that were good for cats weren't very good for mice. One of the laws said that mouse holes had to be big enough so a cat could get his paw in. Another law said that mice could only run at certain speeds - so a cat could get his breakfast without too much effort.
All the laws were good laws. For cats. But, oh, they were hard on mice. And life was getting harder and harder. And when the mice couldn't put up with it any more, they decided that something had to be done. So they went en masse to the polls. They voted the black cats out. They put in white cats.
Now the white cats had put up a terrific campaign. They said, "All Mouseland needs is more vision." They said, "The trouble with Mouseland is the round mouse holes. If you put us in we'll make square mouse holes." And they did. And the square mouse holes were twice as big as the round ones, and now a cat could get both paws in.
And life was tougher then ever.
And when they couldn't take that anymore, they voted the white cats out and black ones in again. Then they went back to white cats. Then to black cats. They even tried half black and half white cats. And they called that a coalition. They even got one government made up of cats with spots on them: They were cats that tried to make a noise like a mouse but ate like a cat.
You see, my friends, the trouble wasn't with the colour of the cat. The trouble was that they were cats. And because they were cats, they naturally looked after cats instead of mice.
Presently there came along one little mouse who had an idea. My friends, watch out for the little fellow with an idea. And he said to the other mice, "Look fellows, why do we keep electing a government made up of cats? Why don't we elect a government made up of mice?" "Oh," they said, "he’s a Bolshevik. Lock him up!"
So they put him in jail.
But I want to remind you: That you can lock up a mouse or a man but you can't lock up an idea.
- Tommy Douglas, 1944