- Stephen Marche discusses the Cons' ongoing efforts to make Canada a more closed and ignorant country:
Mr. Harper’s campaign for re-election has so far been utterly consistent with the personality trait that has defined his tenure as prime minister: his peculiar hatred for sharing information.- Jeremy Nuttall writes that the experience of reporting on the Harper Cons' actions bears a striking resemblance to the life of state-controlled media in China. And the Vancouver Sun interviews Gus Van Harten about Harper's efforts to hand power to Chinese businesses at the expense of Canadian citizens and governments.
Americans have traditionally looked to Canada as a liberal haven, with gun control, universal health care and good public education.
But the nine and half years of Mr. Harper’s tenure have seen the slow-motion erosion of that reputation for open, responsible government. His stance has been a know-nothing conservatism, applied broadly and effectively. He has consistently limited the capacity of the public to understand what its government is doing, cloaking himself and his Conservative Party in an entitled secrecy, and the country in ignorance.
His active promotion of ignorance extends into the functions of government itself. Most shockingly, he ended the mandatory long-form census, a decision protested by nearly 500 organizations in Canada, including the Canadian Medical Association, the Canadian Chamber of Commerce and the Canadian Catholic Council of Bishops. In the age of information, he has stripped Canada of its capacity to gather information about itself. The Harper years have seen a subtle darkening of Canadian life.
The darkness has resulted, organically, in one of the most scandal-plagued administrations in Canadian history.
- Brian Milner and Jeff Lewis are the latest writers to compare Norway's success in preserving its resource wealth to Alberta's minimal reserves.
- Glen McGregor reports that the Cons' Unfair Elections Act - which of course was rammed through Parliament with insufficient review because of the urgency of putting rules in place for this fall's election - was designed to ensure that voters can't trace the source of robocalls until after this fall's election.
- The CP reports that the Cons are looking to resurrect the concept of participating in Star Wars missile defence based on their own efforts to scare the Canadian public. And Amanda Connolly points out just another example of a Con MP - in this case John Williamson - callously using a dead Canadian soldier as a political prop.
- Finally, Robyn Benson examines the status of women in Canada, while highlighting the need to elect a government which isn't out to undermine it.