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Interest Groups

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Interest Groups: 15.3.2013

Globalization occurring at rapid speeds is having vast affects on the Canadian political system. The strong emergence and growing influence of interest groups, gained through institutionalization and immense monetary funding have proven to become a direct threat to political parties in the modern age. This essay will primarily discuss, “Pressure Groups: Talking Chameleons” written by Paul Pross. Following, the analysis of the article, “Wilderness Politics in BC: The Business Dominated State and the Containment of Environmentalism” written by Jeremy Wilson. And finally, discuss and evaluate the vital contents of both articles in relation to other academic sources.

Paul Pross identifies that modern governments in Canada have problems communicating with the public sector. Public debate was originally controlled by the government, however in the early 1970’s policymaking became more of a public process. Governments could no longer insist on withholding valuable information, and the public insisted on increased transparency. Electronic media has proven to be a large contributor in the sense that it has created an environment encouraging public participation and the notion of making groups less dependent on bureaucracies. This resulting in a diffusion of power, granting more influence to the public sector. Prior to the emergence of these interest groups, political parties were the main vehicle enabling citizens to channel their concerns mainly by elections and enabling communication to and from the government. Political parties alone would not suffice to account for the entire populations aggregated demands and thus governments continue to further support pressure groups to battle the constant problem of communication. Interest groups simply emerged as individuals acting together and attempting to influence public policy in the direction...