Report On 2023 Diefenbaker Lecture


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On the cold November 9, 2023 evening in Ottawa, First Freedoms Foundation and Augustine College hosted the 2023 Diefenbaker Lecture. The event had some 80 registrants who were thoroughly engaged in Professor Pardy’s presentation. A presentation that challenged the current alignment of the legislature, executive and judiciary. With the legislature’s delegation of power to the administrative state, meaning the bureaucracy, and the courts’ consistent deference on how the bureaucracy implements the law, we are, says Pardy, left in a situation where we are increasingly run by the administrators. These administrators are the “experts,” the ones with the special knowledge that is known by no one but them.

This leads to our society being ruled by powerful officials who make the rules as they go. Rules are fluid. The problem in this system is that those who make the rules as they go are not subject to those rules. The apt saying that power corrupts is now applicable to the managerial state that has officials with power to make decisions affecting citizens with little responsibility for those decisions. We are no longer under the rule of law but rule by law!

The answer, according to Pardy, is to reimagine our government so that there is a Constitution of Consent: citizens are subject to no laws prescribing their conduct except those to which they have consented.

Please note the views expressed by the individual(s) in this video are their own, and do not necessarily reflect the views or principles of the First Freedoms Foundation.

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