Pierre Cloutier: A Provisional New Constitution for Quebec

Design, Politics
Pierre Cloutier
Pierre Cloutier

Circulating in French among Quebec activists.

[1] A modern state, in my conception of things, must protect its citizens against its own abuses and against the abuses of the mercantile order.

[2] The only way to do this is to identify specific and concrete rights that will enable people living in our area for a decent life “constitutionalising” those rights in a higher law to other laws with a formula easy access to the courts to ensure compliance.

[3] As for the abuses of the state, the Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms fulfills this role and it’s a breeze to include it in a constitutional law. A simple reference line enough.

[4] For protection against abuses of economic liberalism – the market makes the law – the challenge is to clearly define the rights that must be protected in a concrete way that this protection is an immediate and tangible impact on the lives everyday citizens from birth to death. And we must find a formula for flexible enough does not scare investors with loads too heavy to meet. It is a delicate exercise. This is not to multiply the rights but to go to the basics by providing minimal protection while leaving the other hand the creativity and the entrepreneurial spirit to speak freely without too much barriers.

[5] So I ask the following questions in our short time on this planet, what are the most important rights for which we would like to have protection from our national state, and, from our birth to our death? What is essential to ensure basic protection through minimal pursuit of happiness here and now on this earth? Among these essential rights, as part of a free, democratic and “civilized”, I remember:

– The right to the protection of children (already in the Quebec Charter of Rights and Freedoms);
– The right to free health care;
– The right to free education;
– The right to work and employment;
– The right to housing;
– The right to social security;
– The right to a healthy environment;
– The right to old age security;
– The right to die with dignity.

[6] The right to work and the right to a healthy environment can pose a serious problem for economic liberalism. The state can ensure full employment? Can you read that right so as to make it an achievable goal? What extent should we give citizens use the environment? These are food for thought.

[7] At present – even within the Canadian constitution – it is possible to entrench these rights and make a program that could lead to national independence by incorporating it as part of a temporary law “provincial” by the defense and illustration of the “generosity” of the Social Democratic independence project. Concrete rights enshrined in constitutional law are better than all the programs of political parties resulting in simple laws can be changed by a simple majority by the National Assembly. What distinguishes a constitutional law of a simple law is its difficulty in amending it. We have an example of the complexity of the amending formula provided for in the Canadian Constitution by the Constitutional Act of 1982. A simple law binds a government. A constitutional law binds the State. The state is above governments. In constitutional law, it is the state that is committed to protecting its citizens permanently and that all governments Resulting respect these rights and protections and facilitate compliance. It is also enabling the State in a given area to frame the abuse of market forces.

[8] that this should be defended this thesis within the Research Institute of the future work on the independence promised by the new leader of the Parti Québécois.

[9] In other words, to “sell” our project of independence, we must stick as closely as possible to the “real” experienced by the citizens of Quebec and offer them the generous protection of our national state in a concrete and tangible way against shareholders abuse of that State and governments who are from and against market abuses or economic liberalism. And only a constitutional law can do relatively permanently. We can start with a temporary law to the independence, exercise that could then lead to the creation of a citizens constituent to draft a permanent constitution. The example will be given.

[10] In other words, we must understand that a constitution or a constitutional law of nature is not only a formal law to govern the management of the State, but also and especially for granting basic rights to citizens to help them in their concrete and daily life. For example, freedom of expression is important. but what use is it if it is, as a child victim of tyrannical parents, we are sick, we are not educated, we’re starving and unemployed, we have not roof over the head, that is handicapped by age and we must die in suffering?

[11] I am just saying that we must incorporate all this in our national independence project. This is the best way to make the defense and illustration of the country, This is a state project. This is a national project and not just a government project. And you do not need a 100 page program to do that. Thirty articles in a well-crafted constitutional law may suffice.

Pierre Cloutier