Updated: Apr 14
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and your political background?
AK: Good day, Readers. My name is Andrew Kuess. I've been a part of several Canadian and international activist movements for over a decade, most notably and for the longest has been Cannabis activism. At the age of 27, about 5 years ago in 2014; I had the chance to run for Member of Provincial parliament along with many other Canadian cannabis activists. I ran in the riding of Etobicoke center where I was born and raised - and earned 240 votes for the Freedom Party. This was a doubling the freedom parties support from the previous 2010 vote, and I had the chance to participate in a political debate alongside the green, ndp, conservative and liberal candidates. After this learning experience, I had a brief waltz with the Pirate Party in 2015, promoting a campaign to modernize them as the "Cosmic Pirate Party" and advocate space policies leading up to the last election, while advocating that Harper should "walk the plank" via memes to promote getting him out of office. After the 2015 election and the disbanding of the Pirate Party, our growing community of space pirates decided to take a bold new step and create a new party with a new name and a new comprehensive platform to make all others obsolete. We would call ourselves, The STAR party of Canada.
How have your experienced with cannabis activism and political parties shaped your outlook on Canadian politics?
AK: I began pursuing grassroots activist involvement when I was 17. You can see me in the photo above wearing a Pirate Hat at Dundas Square on 4/20 a few years ago... I started an online group called Canadians for Cannabis on facebook in 2005ish and I sought to network activists across Canada. That group grew to over 3000 members, and wanting to help more somehow with my digital skills (being a programmer/digital artist); I made some catchy ads and banners for the global marijuana march a couple years, and I helped gather and share info on cases, and medical uses, and gathered information on all of Canada's varied activist groups to help them build a tighter network. The premise was simple enough: Canadian? Want pot laws to change? Join us and lets figure it out together. My group was later shut down by facebook and all the members were removed from the group and it was "archived" against our wishes. Since then, the group was restarted twice, once by myself and once by a second group of fans of the original that were also mad at the loss of our networked community. That offshoot has grown even larger than the original and they re-invited me as an admin to continue our efforts. I have also been involved in the arcology, seasteading and resource based economy movements that aim to develop self sustainable cities and future economies for almost a decade; as well managing a group called the Toronto Arcology Coop Project which seeks to organize a local community for that same purpose. Since 2014, I have been an outspoken voice promoting public space colonization, which led to my more recent political efforts. Cannabis activism sparked my interest in politics, and activists within the cannabis community helped me to run for office. Seeing many of my fellow patriots be trampled by our Orwellian Neo-Liberal Government, gave me a shocking awareness of how our government truly operates. I became a Cannabis activist many years ago because i believed the laws were leading to the unjust criminalization of Canadians. As a medical user my rights were likely infringed upon, and when the government is poised to lose, charges are simply withdrawn or stayed after the government exhausts the citizenry's financial ability to fight, ironically just as in the Norman case. I don't wonder if any of the cannabis cases had political interference, I wonder how many did.
Cannabis activism has given me a view that our govt is an abusive and oppressive archaic institution in need of drastic reform for the 21st century. The honest public are in my opinion fighting an uphill battle for a better future; and our selection of current leaders and duopoly parties are often only meeting the needs of the 1%, passing bills, for bills passed. Billionaires are even arguably plotting on humanities future in space, aiming to becoming trillionaires within decades when we as a Civilization, should be planning to develop Starfleet and UBI funded by space development and automation replacing the workforce.
What does STAR stand for? AK: The STAR acronym represents our core party interests.
We are the
S.pace colonization T.echnological development A.dvancing Civilization, and R.estoring the Environment ...Party
To what extent do you think we can use genres like science fiction for inspiration?
AK: I think there is definitely room to use some forms of science fiction to inspire political debate about future policy, particularly in regards to issues like AI (Terminator), orbital space colonies (Elysium), Exopolitics (Star Trek, Star Wars), and off world mining (Avatar). Right now, our big thinkers pushing space are big businessmen - leading for a dollar. We need leaders that will lead space civilization forward for the progress of all civilization, not just a handful of rich men trying to wow the world to enrich themselves and create Cosmic Fiefdoms and repeat the mistakes some of our sci-fi has so keenly pointed out. (Jupiter Ascending) To inspire that kind of thought, why not have politicians cause a stir on the global scene by showing up in Startrek uniforms rather than suits, , and talking about Canada building Colonies on Mars and Star fleet over a 20 year period, or as the Master Chief (Halo) discussing the need for a Space force with Superhuman capabilities to fight aliens, while also discussing the citizen applications and the laws that might be needed in the use of these emerging technologies might be both entertaining and relevant... I hope to use a variety political oriented cosplay antics, to raise awareness and spark debate about our future in space, and I hope others will join me in this effort. Sci-fi can most definitely inspire the future, so why can't we use the best of it as a sort of road map in some cases, to better understand and plan for our course ahead? To me, this just seems.. logical.
Are there any politicians or figures who inspire you personally and why? AK: I look for inspiration in many different people from visionaries like Alexander the Great, and Hailee Selassie, to intellectuals like Buckminster Fuller, and Nikola Tesla. I look for musical inspiration from reggae artists like Bob Marley, & Chronixx, to metal musicians like Serge Tankian and John Davis. Politically, JFK and the somewhat more modernly Donald Trump; due to the fact he's not a career politician, and against utterly stacked odds, won the most powerful political office in the world and is making some quite bold changes in the world and reasserting the strength of Western Civilization and looking out for his people AND building a space force... Since 2015 I was actively promoting "Space Piracy" being a "thing" ... (as the Cosmic Pirate Party) ... Ironically, Ted Cruz is going on about Space Pirates in the news, and the world laughs...
I also find inspiration in a man named Lord Buckethead, a political satirist from the UK, and his comical American parallel Vermin Supreme. These men mock the government with nonsensical platforms in costume, and often gain a considerable share of votes demonstrating discontent with the system, but what would happen if an army of cos-player's did the same with bold but achievable ideas? It might just work, now that younger voters now outnumber boomers..
What are some of your plans for space colonization? AK: I would aim to establish a course heading for Canada that would ensure Canadian Colonists land on the Moon and Mars in the mid-late 2020s. China, the US and Europe all have ambitious space colonization plans set for the next two decades and I would seek to involve Canada in these pursuits. Asteroid or Lunar mining to build up the space industry would be a good first project to pursue after building a launch site. If SpaceX is building BFR's, can Canada not fund the mass production of several for Canadian colonists? I'd like to chat with Elon about how a nation could bolster and reinforce his efforts to colonize Mars, rather than be wowed by his plans.
Should a space program be facilitated by the private or public sector? AK: I believe a combination is necessary, because I do not think private industry should be solely leading colonization efforts as much as I believe they should be heavily participating in public colonization efforts. Mining companies worldwide have issues even to this day, on Earth in how they deal with indigenous populations and unfortunately corporations have a history of violating workers rights in ways that have needed government intervention to correct. If we don't Mars to become a third world space colony run by trillionaires with no accountability, governing bodies will need to be involved in planning and establishing colonies and corporations should be working & competing to fulfill national goals. If SpaceX can crowd fund enough money to pay for 1 rocket to Mars; Canada or the US can use the military budget to buy 10 of them, to send 10x as many colonists as a private budget could afford for the purpose of ensuring human rights and ensuring there is some sort of national oversight and enhanced support.
Do we need to start considering things like Reagan’s idea of “star wars” or Trump’s idea of a “space force” (i.e. the idea that we need to be prepared for conflict against each other (and possibly extra terrestrials) in the cosmos)? AK: I think that any space colonization efforts should certainly have a military component to it for the sole purpose of ensuring the survivability of colonies. Realistically, i think the most likely scenarios we'll likely encounter anytime soon are asteroids or threats from other humans (ie. space pirates), long before we encounter genocidal otherworldly civilizations - but I definitely don't think we should neuter our deep space ships when we build them. If we were to build a generational ship or Ark type vessel over the next several decades, it should be fully armed and capable of defending itself and equipped to educate and train successive generations of citizens in defense.
A relatively new sci-fi japanese anime cartoon called Knights of Sidonia somewhat explores this concept of generational ships and long distance space travel. Due to the fact that the navy has the most experience building large, armored vessels that transport cargo across vast distances securely; and once we are technologically capable of building in orbit using 3d printing, I believe our armed forces will take great interest in any sort of shipyard, that is constructed. I would pursue aim to pursue an allied orbital shipyard development program, within 20 years for the purpose of developing an Ark-type ship over the next 100 years by supporting NASA's 100 year Starship program and Icarus Interstellar.
What are your priorities when it comes to technological development? A: I think over the next 2-4 terms were going to see huge technological advances in the realm of post-humanism or trans-humanism breaktroughts that will enhance human capabilities beyond our current comprehension with new emergent technology and brain machine interfaces. I also foresee the adoption of many new medical technologies that will transform the medical landscape; from things like extension of human life to nanotechnology that could become almost symbiotic with humanity, and workplace automation as major issues that should be discussed and debated by the next government, while being pursued cautiously. Personal flying transportation & AI-driven vehicles; are other development that need be addressed as well. I would like to see our space and robotics sectors expand massively, as well as ensuring Canada resurrects our once unparalleled Aerospace program. We can do a lot if we *want* to.
Canadian Avro-Y VTOL Aircraft (Now Extinct)
What are your thoughts on the advancement of AI and automation?
A: If used properly, it will transform society like the industrial age did to a world that will be as unfamiliar to us as the car was in the age of horse and buggies. If we don't take risks about automated weapons seriously, were rapidly heading towards a Terminator scenario. Both need to be talking points of Canada's next government and next election. Otherwise... If you are reading this.. you might become the resistance. . .
Given that the A stands for "Advancement of civilization", by which standards do you want to advance civilization according to? A: Human rights and 21st century rights. Around the world we are seeing a lot of different social issues unfold in different ways and recently crackdowns on free speech, and political views particularly on social media. We would seek to put a stop to human slavery worldwide in places like Libya and Africa, build 3d printed homes for the homeless, and build automated vertical farms that would mass produce food to help end food shortages and solve world hunger. We would also fight for digital rights to free speech, transhumanism rights, and aim to ensure a portion of asteroid mining funds a type of universal income to put an end to income inequality and political inequality.
Can you elaborate on your ideal for Canada as a potential superpower? A: We should absorb the crumbling UK like we once did Newfoundland after they finish up with their Brexit issue. Doing so would make Canada a nuclear space power, and bring the commonwealth together under Canadian leadership. We'll offer Australia and NZ status as new provinces and invite other commonwealth nations to join Super Canada, such as Jamaica. The reason is as follow; we need to really start planning to compete against Europe and China and we will be a lot stronger and better off, if our allies joined Canada as new remote provinces to form a powerful new block. CANZUK already explored a border-less travel concept between Can-UK-Australia and New Zealand, so this is just taking it one step further. If we become an Empire again, the US might not like it so much, but if we become a republic, might they join? creating the most powerful government in the history of civilization. Globalism be damned, unless its done the Canadian way. The world needs more Canada; Super Canada will deliver.
Obviously we could vote on a new name, or remain Canada but the idea's simple enough.
What is your position on environmentalism? What kind of policies would you suggest? A: Seed bombing new forests, restoring coral reefs, and fighting nuclear pollution are starting points. We have a very comprehensive program planned which encourages the public help us be aware of environmental issues and solutions and able to participate accordingly. We are in a fight for the future of the environment and nations need to step up and take definitive action to fix it, rather than just pay a carbon tax. I would have our military build Mechas that will protect the environment and endangered species with armed force. It angers me to see things like Orangutans trying to fight Bulldozers to defend their forests. My government would build a series of Ape-Theme Gundams, that will patrol protected zones and literally smash these machines if they are illegally logging, or fight poachers with high tech military robotics. Corporate polluters and poachers will be pursued by our government. We will pursue the people destroying Earth politically and financially, and when needed - use force to protect the environment and endangered species. I will use drones and Gundams to fight poaching and to shut down illegal logging/environmentally destructive operations. I will organize a Green Army.
Can you elaborate on the concept of arcology for the audience a little bit?
NOAH, New Orleans Arcology Concept A: Arcology, is a field of creating architectural design principles for very densely populated, ecologically low-impact human habitats.
The term was coined in 1969 by architect Paolo Soleri, who believed that a completed arcology would provide space for a variety of residential, commercial, and agricultural facilities while minimizing individual human environmental impact. These structures have been largely hypothetical, as no arcology, even one envisioned by Soleri himself, has yet been built.
It's essentially a super condo complex that is self sustainable habitat. If you would imagine what a city on Mars would be like, that would essentially need to be an Arcology that is self sustainable. My goal would be to develop a models of these cities, in Canada that would could replicate on other worlds and also serve as a training city for colonists preparing for Martian colonization.
Essentially we'd aim to develop a futuristic self sustainable Canadian city where the world citizens travel to first, to train and prepare for the colonization of Mars, before we send them to its sister colonies on Mars or the Moon that operate in the same manner. The first Arcology in Canada, would be developed as a proto-space colony and space academy, using a hybrid of capitalism & resource based economics model, that would be supported by the Canadian government until the Colony was self sustainable and linked to the other off world Arcologies.
Here at Free Bird, one thing we’ve been discussing, a la Starship troopers, is the idea of having national conscription into a militia, as opposed to police, to encourage self-policing and to encourage citizens to have some “skin in the game”, any thoughts on this idea? A: Service Guarantees Citizenship! Lol! To be completely honest and forward, part of my immigration reform plan is to encourage a brain gain by encouraging people who want to work in space, colonize space, or join the Canadian space force are prioritized over other immigrants. If they want to fight for us, welcome aboard Eh!
What is the STAR party’s position on Globalism? Pro or anti? Globalist pushing Europe should try getting rid of the borders in the far east before continuing to push its narrative on people that broke away from Europe... Go ahead and work on Israel/Palestine or India/Pakistan or China/Russia border... Rome was Europe's empire. It had its glory days, its done now. If were going to pursue Globalism, lets do it the Canadian way by building Super Canada and adopting states as provinces so they rise to our standards and were not lowering the bar for political correctness. I'd rather a Canadian or North American Empire conquer the world, than the world conquer Canada via UN globalist agreements. Canada's future matters, Globalism is a European ideology and it's not the way forward.
Following from this, what about mass-immigration? A: If they want to help build our space program, join our space force, or be colonists for Canada's space outpost... Awesome. If they are skilled workers, welcome aboard! If they are refugees, lets help them rebuild their own nations and establish new colonial cities to house and protect them on their own lands. Let's bring the Canadian standard of living to them, rather than them needing to come here.
As it stands, I am not pleased with our immigration policy and believe the liberals are basically mass recruiting migrant voters since Canadians are pretty sick of their bullshit. You don't bring in record numbers of new people, to overrule the people you represent when they disagree with your misguided policy. This seems to be a play taken from the American democrats playbook, including liberals promoting open borders. Are they trying to swamp non-liberal riding's with new voters to rig an election? Seems like it to me...
Is the STAR party concerned with the risk of radical terrorism at all? What are your plans for this? A: Absorbing the UK, Australia and NZ would make Canada a nuclear space and naval power and would enhance our collective military capabilities tremendously. This would transform Canada into a much stronger partner for the US in the war on terror, building on the Special relationship the US and UK already share with a Cosmic Canadian Twist.
In an age of war between ideologies of clashing societies; let us seek to build a future for Canada that will inspire a greater future vision for all humanity, whilst also defending that pursuit vigorously - unto Mars and beyond.
What should people do to support your party, if interested? A: Firstly, join our facebook page... and invite your friends to check us out! We're still a new party, but we've already gathered well over 1000 supporters nationwide. https://www.facebook.com/StarPartyCanada/
Second, We only require 250 electors (signing supporters) to register for the upcoming election, as well as a Chief elector and an Auditor for party finances. The link below is a printable form which can be mailed to our party HQ. After collecting 250+ forms, we will be able to register for upcoming elections as the worlds first official space party. https://www.facebook.com/1563699230569902/posts/2304899803116504/
Last of all, if you are interested in further volunteering, canvassing, donating to the party, or running as an MP - please reach out to us on social media as soon as possible.
Many thanks to Freebird Media, for the opportunity to speak about our party - Keep flying free!
All the best, - Andrew Kuess STAR CAPTAIN DREAD STAR PARTY OF CANADA