Added: May 4, 2008 Category: News & Politics
© Lloyd MacIlquham, all rights reserved, 4 Mayl, 2008,
Lloyd MacIlquham, B.Sc., M.Sc., J.D.
Nanaimo, Vancouver Island
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Previously (episode 18) Batman and Robin were discussing the Harper regressive, conservative right wing ideology of "Obscure and Obstruct" in the curtailment of access to information and its impact on our civil and human rights;
and, the suggestion that Stephane Dion pick up the torch of ‘freedom of information’.
However, shocking information has just reached them regarding new, extreme measures implemented by Harper and the Conservatives to further curtain transparency in government and the free flow of information.
Meanwhile back in the Bat Cave . . .
Robin: Holy Revelations, this is beyond comprehension, Batman.
Batman: What’s that, Robin, don’t tell me Harper and the Conservatives have taken more steps to limit our rights and freedoms.
That’s right, Batman - lucky guess. I can hardly believe what I am reading.
Batman: Educated guess. Read on MacDuff, ... err, Robin.
Robin: It appears Harper and his Conservative Government have “kill access to information database” (CBC, 2 May ‘08).
Batman: You mean the “Coordination of Access to Information Requests System", ( CAIRS ), the data base containing almost all the access to information requests that have been submitted over the years and which is freely accessible to all, including researchers, media and the general public. Surely you can't be serious.
I am serious, Batman, . . . and don't call me Shirley.
Batman: What possible excuse can they give, Robin, for killing something that is so useful to so many people and is a basic tool to keep the government transparent and accountable.
Robin: Apparently it wasn't valued by government departments and the "valuable resources currently being used to maintain CAIRS would be better used in the collection and analysis of improved statistical reporting," (CBC article, above).
Batman: Certainly, Robin, maintaining the access to information database cannot be that costly, especially considering its usefulness and importance to an open and free democracy. If anything they should be putting it "on-line". To quote Mr. Justice LaForest of the Supreme Court of Canada (in the Dagg decision)
"The overarching purpose of access to information legislation--is to facilitate democracy. . . . It helps to ensure first, that citizens have the information required to participate meaningfully in the democratic process, and secondly, that politicians and bureaucrats remain accountable to the citizenry."
Holy Regressive, Conservative Right Wing Ideology of "Obscure and Obstruct", Batman. What's really going on.
Batman: Who knows what is lurking in the hearts of Harper and the Conservatives, Robin. We should all ask ourselves: “is this the type of government we want for this great nation of ours”;
Holy Enlightenment, Batman, didn’t Harper and the Con. Party run on clarity and transparency in the last election
Batman: That’s my recollection too, Robin, and Harper and the Con. Party’s style of government is becoming much more transparent and their Hidden Agenda much clearer.
What about Stephane Dion and the Liberal Party. Certainly they will champion the cause of freedom and democracy.
Batman: Based on his past actions we cannot simply assume he will pick up the banner and “fight the good fight” for our futures and for our children.
How so, Batman.
Batman: Apparently Dion is too pre-occupied with being elected. However, in delaying he may find himself in a hole too deep to dig himself out of. The strange thing is, that at the end of the day he may very well be elected despite himself. Since, how else can we extricate ourselves.
How so, Batman.
Batman: Harper and the Con. Party have a small minority and very small percentage of people voted for them in the last election. Presumably the voting was spread out amongst the four major parties because the Canadian voters didn’t mind giving Harper a chance and
see what they could do. With this and the many other actions that Harper has taken to dismantle our way of life, the Canadian people may see much clearer what Harper is all about and decide we cannot afford to remain so polarized in our voting. To so do, the Liberal Party is the only real choice.
Robin: But what about Layton
and the NDP. Surely Layton could recommend to the NDP supporters that they lend the Liberals their vote in the up-coming election. After all, he is a strong proponent of such policies ... or, at least he used to be. Wasn’t he the one who said “friends, Liberals, country persons, lend me your vote”
Batman: Something like that, Robin, although perhaps not quite so articulate. Evidently Layton is too pre-occupied with his dream of power thru supplanting the Liberal Party to join together in a common cause for the good of all of Canada. And of course, in so doing, may very well be the basis of another Harper victory.
Holy Ironies, Batman. But, Dion does not seem to be considered a strong leader.
Batman: Good leadership, Robin, in a modern, democratic, economically developed society is not one person imposing his/her will on all the rest. Good leadership refers to the whole and not one part.
The Liberal Party has many fine members, something in which the Con. Party evidently is seriously lacking. This is referred to in hockey as “Depth”. In fact, apparently, the Conservative Party’s Lack of depth is so bad that once in power Harper immediately put muzzles on all his Ministers which have remained to this day.
Many consider this to be a shrewd, if not somewhat Machiavellian, political move.
This, of course, may be another reason for restricting the free flow of information regarding the Harper and the Con. government.
Robin: Great Ineptitude, Batman, you mean in addition to Harper and the Con. Party trying to keep
their extreme Right Wing Hidden Agenda, hidden they are trying to cover up their lack of talent.
Batman: It appears things are becoming much clearer for you too, Robin.
Robin: But, it may very well be too late to undo the damage done. What can we do, Batman.
I don’t know. Perhaps we will have no choice but to look elsewhere for a Champion. What I do know is that we've got to get our Canada back, Robin, before it's too late.
© Lloyd MacIlquham, all rights reserved, 4 May, 2008-05-04