Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The Conservative Plot Against The Summer Silly Season

I think that I've uncovered a plot by Canada's Tories to undo the summer silly season and make sure we're all angry, unhappy and sleep deprived by the time the next session of Parliament rolls around.

How else can you explain the billion dollar boondoggle that was the bill for a single weekend's security for the G8 and G20 summits, the still continuing census controversy, and who could forget the rising number of unreported crimes as an excuse to spend $10-$13 billion on fancy new prisons? You didn't think the Tories were going to quit there did you?

Starting with the Ombudsperson for Canadian veterans, Col. Pat Stogran, a retired infantry officer, and the Conservative government's decision not to appoint him to a second term -- which in itself isn't the problem. As he noted himself at the news conference yesterday, that's their prerogative. The problem is he was critical of the government's handling of veterans affairs, revealing yesterday that he was "impeded by a bureaucracy that was deliberately obstructive and deceptive," and so he is summarily turfed.

Even more damningly, he says he only realized the enormity of the battle he was fighting after a recent conversation with a civil servant who watches over the government’s purse. “I was told … that it is in the government’s best interests to have soldiers killed overseas rather than wounded because the liability is shorter term,” Stogran said. I'm not even sure what to say about that. If true, that's possibly the most disgusting thing I've heard in a year's worth of stone-walling, demagoguery and fear mongering on every issue possible.


All criticism or disagreements with the Tories lead to dismissal: Marc Garneau told reporters in Ottawa on Tuesday that Stogran joins a long list of arm's-length advocates — including former military police complaints commissioner Peter Tinsley and ex-RCMP watchdog Paul Kennedy — who were "sacked because they are telling the government the truth, instead of parroting."

Sadly there's more evidence of the Conservatives' desire to suppress all dissent. Yesterday the head of the Canadian firearms program, RCMP Chief Superintendent Marty Cheliak, and a supporter of the long-gun registry was bounced from his post and sent off for French-language training. Needless to say his support of the long-gun registry is in direct opposition to the Tories stand on the issue. People are noticing that this is part of a continuing pattern on the part of the ideologically driven Tories. Hopefully that includes Canada's voting public.

The furor over the Tamil migrants that showed up in B.C. last Friday has our PM talking about changing laws to give authorities greater powers to curb human smuggling, instead of say... enforcing the laws that are already on the books! Why not simply take it on a case by case basis? The new cases represent only two per cent of the 30,000 refugee applications Canada receives annually, so why all the fear-mongering? Oh, right, they're the Tories and that's what they are predisposed to do.