June 21, 2006

politics

Posted in Uncategorized at 9:01 am by changisme

I wonder what the definition of politics is. I was in UBC talking to this library staff person I knew. She asked me where I’ve been last term and I told her I was working in Statistics Canada. Right then right there, she went on to an enraged speech on discrimination and politics when she worked for Stats Can. She was working in the BC department and was producing publications for the softwood industry, but she was classified under "interviewer" catagory, which meant that even though she worked full time, she had no benefits and was only paid half as much as another man who did exactly the same job but was considered permanent. I don’t know if she was angry about the fact that they discriminated against women or against interviewers.
 
Anyways, she sounds rather angry, but proud at the same time. I’ve always known her as very nice and helpful, and this shook me a little bit. The discrimination she discribed happened 20 years ago, so I don’t know if it has changed. She concluded that it’s all politics, I wonder what that really means. Does it mean battle for rights? Does it mean each person/entity tries to benefit themselves in all negotiations? People say this and that is very political even not in a governmental context. I don’t exactly grasp the meaning of the word anymore. I used to think that politics just means the struggling relationships among groups of people. The motives seemed to me are all different, money, power or sheer desire to do the right thing. More and more from what people say, I feel that the motive doesn’t really matter in politics, it’s more the ends that justify the means. I guess I can always change my mind later.
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