Tightening the grip: muzzling of scientists ramps up

On Thursday, February 28th, 2013 in Island Tides

I had originally intended to write this column about my trip to Washington, DC on February 7-8, when I met with United States Senators and Congresspersons about climate and the Keystone XL pipeline. In brief, the trip was very successful in making links with strong proponents of climate action. Things are moving. The US General Accountability Office had decided that as a threat to federal government finances, climate change is now classed ‘high risk’.

I had planned a media availability session at the unfortunate time of Friday afternoon at 4pm, as it was the only time when I wasn’t busy in meetings. By complete fluke, Minister of Foreign Affairs, John Baird, came to Washington, DC the same day and held a joint press conference with US Secretary of State John Kerry at 2pm. Thanks to Minister Baird, my press conference was perfectly timed and a ton of media showed up. In the Twitter world, this could all be explained with #synchronicity.

And further to my last column, President Barack Obama did indeed make climate action a significant part of his State of the Union address. While the Globe and Mail described this as a ‘surprise’, readers of Island Tides were likely not surprised.

Though there is much to share about events in Washington, new developments in the repression of Canadian science are more urgent. ‘Chilling’ is the word that has been used in media reports, and ‘chilling’ it is.

Back in October 2011, I wrote in Island Tides about the muzzling of DFO scientists. The scientist in question, Dr Kristi Miller, had achieved levels of scientific respect as her work on viruses linked to salmon aquaculture operations had been published in the internationally prestigious journal Science. When Science attempted to arrange media interviews with Dr Miller, the Privy Council Office ordered her to refuse.

It seems that the public outcry over that event, and others including ozone scientists at Environment Canada, led the Prime Minister’s Office to decide the contractual arrangements with scientists were too lax. As of February 1 this year, new rules were put in place requiring all scientists working on projects in conjunction with DFO in the Central and Arctic Region to treat all information as proprietary to DFO, and—worse—await departmental approval before submitting research to any scientific journals.

The story was broken by veteran journalist Michael Harris, in the online journal iPolitics. Harris has been one of the few journalists willing to dig into the pervasive repression, slashing of science and rejection of evidence based decision-making in Harper’s Ottawa.

The reaction from DFO was swift. It posted this attack on its website:

‘The iPolitics story by Michael Harris published on February 7th, 2013 is untrue. There have been no changes to the Department’s publication policy.’

Harris recounts that he was stunned. He had verified the change with several scientists, external to DFO. He called Dr Jeff Hutchings at Dalhousie University who re-confirmed the changes. Then Harris received support from an unexpected source—an anonymous DFO scientist posted the email from Michelle Wheatley, the Central and Arctic science director, sent out to detail the new publication policy.

The anonymous scientist wrote, ‘Here is the e-mail I got from my division manager on January 29, 2013: ‘Subject: New Publication Review Committee (PRC) Procedures for C&A Science …’. The email was reproduced in full, and began, ‘This message is regarding the new Publication Review Committee procedures for C&A Science…’

The email noted that the new policy was to take effect on February 1, 2013.

The anonymous scientist concluded: ‘You decide who’s being untruthful.’

A few days after DFO tried to deny that there were any changes, the Vancouver Sun broke the story of a US scientist, doing collaborative work with DFO, who is refusing to sign the new conditions. Calling it a ‘potential muzzle,’ Dr Andreas Muenchow, of the University of Delaware told the Sun, ‘I’m not signing it.’ Muenchow has been working on a project with DFO scientists in the Eastern Arctic since 2003.

In 2003, when the collaborative research project began, there were quite different rules about sharing data: ‘Data and any other project-related information shall be freely available to all Parties to this Agreement and may be used, disseminated or published, at any time.’

Within days of February 1st’s new publication policy, on February 7, came another DFO email to scientists: now they must obtain prior consent before applying for research grants.

You can see where this is going. It is not enough to muzzle scientists like Dr Miller when their research is published. The tightening of control over science must be established far earlier in the process. Stop the research from being submitted to journals. Stop the scientists from collaborating with others. Stop scientists from applying for research grants. Stop science from happening at all.

The elimination of whole branches of scientific work within the federal government, the slashing of governmental funds for science, and now a departmental veto on applying for research grants or submitting results to peer reviewed journals fits in the larger systemic dismantling of any aspect of governmental activities that could throw doubt on the wisdom of pressing for rapid expansion of fossil fuel exploitation.

‘Chilling’ is one word, but it does not seem adequate to this development. This is the 21st Century equivalent of the Dark Ages. This is book burning and superstition run rampant. This is the administration of a steady, slow drip of poison to a weakening democracy.

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  • martin golder

    Thank you Thank you Thank you Elizabeth. You are now the ONLY voice in Ottawa that is not muzzled. The NDP and the Liberals have both seen that Harpers policy of muzzling his MPs as well as his (The Harper Government’s) scientists is helping him so I get the sense that the NDP and the Liberals will follow this policy of centralized info and control unless we can kick start a revolution. Thanks again.

    • Seeking Truth

      since the 1985 Mulroney gov’ts, the Libs have been behaving very Cons. Someone called them Tory 2′s. If the Goldman Sachs ‘graduates’ have got to the NDP too, who knows? If even municipalities can’t get along, how can world banks govern successfully? … by riot squads, as we saw at the Fake-Lake fiasco.

      • http://twitter.com/etenebrislux Michael Marsh

        I agree whole heartedly. The banks took over the BoC back in the mid-60′s and have not let go.
        The BoC was created to improve Canadian living conditions and it was used initially in 1937 to create our current social safety net. That has now been stolen from us simply because the BoC was major lending competition.

        Feds/Provinces/municipalities now borrow from banks, when initially they borrowed from the BoC at very low rates. Now Banks take our money from BoC and lend it back to us at higher rates. No wonder were going broke. Fraud at the highest levels.

        Thing is the Bank Act is still in force and unchanged. So why isn’t some province/municipality taking the BoC to court to take the power away from the banks and give it back to the people where it belongs?

  • Frank Totino

    Elizabeth, you are right. We have a fascist, repressive First World cadre of controlling, selfish and mean men (mostly) representing the Canadian people. Somehow, through un-challenged and archaic electoral processes, we have chosen this. They say democracy brings the government that the people deserve. In this case, if that is true, then what have we done as a nation to deserve this group of paranoid, ignorant fools? What can be done? I know…vote Green or NDP or something besides Conservative. Maybe the left should unite?
    But beyond that? Is there nothing parliament can do to challenge these decrees from above? Where is contractual law in this case? Where are the scientists who will speak up anyway? Where are the law suits?

    I mean it is great that you get a good press conference in Washington, but to what end? Canadian mining companies are raping the headwaters of the Amazon! http://www.salon.com/2013/02/10/to_get_the_gold_they_will_have_to_kill_every_one_of_us/
    My grandfathers and uncles didn’t fight fascism in Europe and elsewhere, only to get this gang in Ottawa. Do we have to fight it here now?

    • Seeking Truth

      SH vowed ‘to CHANGE CANADA FOREVER’, & he’s going about it systematically & very quickly. How can he do that? … well, not sure, BUT after seeing the Knowledge Network program in the ‘How the West Went Bust’ series “Goldman Sachs, The Bank That Runs The World” where they describe GS’ education system of young bright mathematicians, then places them in bank positions all around the world to manipulate state’s financials, I would believe it! Italy, Greece, etc, etc. The GS international head office is in London. Our Mark Carney is a GS graduate, & he served our Lib. & Con. governments’ Mins of Finance!!! And now is going to the Bank of England in LONDON!!! If you missed that program, google up Mark Carney/Goldman Sachs (business world) – that shows the GS’ graduates in countries ALL OVER THE WORLD! … go figure … the agenda is globalization (tyranny of the world bankers).

    • BCcantBeBought

      Although I agree with most of what you have written, the part about ‘mean (men) mostly…’ is inappropriate. Call it what you want, call it sexism, reverse sexism, etc. Whether it’s a man or a woman, or an elephant in striped pyjamas, it’s the ‘deed’ that is done, not the sex of the person doing it. Just a thought for future posts as it made me feel you could ‘lose’ some potential readers of the post (such as myself, but I re read it three times and I GET your point). Thanks.

      • http://www.facebook.com/fmtotino Frank Totino

        Thanks for the note on writing and posting. You are right. Without a reference or citation it is kind of like flaming. I was trying to connect the history of the thing (including the Ecuador story) to the paternalism of Conquest in the empirical way and the current banking situation, which is the same. My guess is that there are few women CEO’s in this game, other than the Premiers of the provinces involved that is.

      • Forward Thinker

        I cannot agree more. I am tired of people practicing sexist attitudes while arguing the moral high ground. I am not a fan of Ms. May, although I voted for her to get rid of Lunn. I find her to be a little one sided in her evaluations of issues.

    • Cassandra Robillard

      A response to the question, “where are the scientists”: I recommend checking out Death of Evidence, and group started by Canadian scientists and science students. http://www.deathofevidence.ca/

  • http://www.facebook.com/rsmulder Roy Mulder

    I was at the Dr. Kristi Miller testimony. To see the level the government went to in regards to silencing her was staggering. This was before the new “silence” legislation came into effect.
    Sometimes I feel like I am living in a 3rd world nation rather than a 1st world nation when I see our government running roughshod over “open” democracy.

    • Seeking Truth

      ‘hear no science, see no science, do no science’ (truth) I’ve also been following the disgusting pharma-phish issues & Alexandra Morton’s courageous opposition … also, look at the deceitful & insulting way they’re sneaking the closure of the safe & successful Kitsilano Coast Guard SAR at this moment – on the busiest port in Canada.. not to forget the systematic scouring out of Canada’s valuable institutions through those deceitful Omnibus bills, & those sneaky pro-ROGUES. … we could go on & on & on …

      • WayneF

        And the three monkeys: Baird, Kent, Oliver…
        who WAS that guy calling the Tar Sands green? Buffoons.

        • Seeking Truth

          ..sly, not buffoons! …”If you tell a lie big enough & keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic &/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, & thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.” ..Joseph Goebbels

    • Seeking Truth

      read the new Alexandra Morton message (salmonaresacred) “Salmon Confidential” – a revealing video!

  • bernard

    please remember that mr harper’s governing style is of the old world, and that old world standard is currently fighting like mad because there is so much evidence to the contrary and such a strong wind blowing for change and justice…mr. harper’s days are numbered…believe and pray and work…and so it will be…

    • Seeing Truth

      I believe it’s rather “GO GO GLOBALIZATION!!!, Goldman Sachs style.

    • cruz_ctrl

      yeah! believe! pray! that will get the job done…

      “such a strong wind blowing for change and justice”

      really? wish it would blow through North America…

  • Rose Wooldridge

    Since this research was paid for with tax dollars, the results of ALL of it belong to the citizens and must, ethically, be published and made available.

  • mdouble

    What a damning indictment of the government. This is however something which is not being said in your article, which should be stated most loudly. Government works on behalf of the people who pay the bill for all research. In that regard we in fact have the right to know the results of research, good bad or indifferent. We also have the right to hear what the scientists have to say, especially if it has a direct bearing on the lives of the population or the future of the country. Put bluntly we are paying for services which we aren’t getting, which in a sense is nothing less than fraud.

    • Seeking Truth

      too, too true … as we are exposed on a daily basis to the outrageous scandals & other senseless behaviours by all levels of governments, we have to wonder who & what is behind it all.

      • http://www.facebook.com/peaceoutdood Third Eye

        I wonder about that too. What dark force is behind the enslavement of humanity? I don’t think it’s human either, I just don’t see how people can wish such harm unto others :( I believe in the good of man. There’s a theory that there are reptillian entities that exist on a different wavelength and operate through “human” hosts. Apparently this creatures control the world through positions of power such as Queen Elizabeth and George Bush. It’s pretty out there but I like to keep an open mind.

        • Dan White

          You really have to wonder who the dark forces are behind all of this? Two words, central banks. Every nation that has one is beholden to them who is in turn beholden to the world bank who is beholden to the federal reserve who bank rolls the CIA. They just killed Chavez for his oil and they’ve undermined Harper since he took over office to get our oil. This is how the world works. Nothing matters but oil, but what really matters is power and control and the banks have both.

          • marie

            They undermine Harper ?? He has been been right at home in bed with big bank all along !

          • Seeking Truth

            of course! (see my reply to Frank Totino, below) … if you research Goldman Sachs-Mark Carney, you will see he is one of their star graduates – when in Tokyo was instrumental in the fall of the Russian oligarchy banks, & has been advisor to both our Liberal & Conservative Finance Departments BEFORE becoming Governor of OUR Bank of Canada. & now will be Gov. of the Bank of England in London, where coincidently the head office of Goldman Sachs International Banking resides! Goldman Sachs The Bank That Runs The World!!!! Globalization, anybody – divide (countries) & conquer!

  • http://www.facebook.com/susan.best2 Susan Best

    Mr. Harper dictates who can speak and who cannot! At same time ,spending tons of money with Action Plan ads!

    • Seeking Truth

      as does Premier Clarke, they’re a real pair of leaders

  • http://www.facebook.com/susan.best2 Susan Best

    Time to boycott tv stations and radio stations that air corporate conservative ads!

    • http://www.facebook.com/gretchen.schwarz.5 Gretchen Schwarz

      Unfortunately it’s nearly impossible to watch any tv station not airing the (paid-for-by-taxpayers) pro-government ads. I had my tv on “mute” and the only printed words were: “Environmental Protection” and “Responsible Resource Management”. The basic theme was “the government is working for Canadians and every decision made by the government has led to success (of an unspecified type)”. I remember back in the 1950′s and 60′s hearing about Communist countries whose governments brainwashed their citizens. This is what is happening to us.

      • http://twitter.com/etenebrislux Michael Marsh

        Yes your right. Those Harper action adds are nothing more than psycological warfare tools pointed at the tax payer.

    • Joe Parchelo

      This is a great idea. If I see any more , I will change the channel, noting which one it was, and then notify them that I am boycotting them for this reason.

  • http://twitter.com/sailsmart sailsmart

    Surely scientists must subvert directions from a government that represses data from becoming known. Conditions will only worsen and advocates of change cannot act without facts behind them. Uploaded letters anonymously helps to spread the evidence, outside embarrassment puts shame where it belongs.

    • Seeking Truth

      Alexandra Morton (salmon are sacred) has been doing this for years – supporting Dr. Miller, digging out supporting science, independent testing salmon for denied viruses, both wild, pharmed & retail, posting maps & info on most migration routes past caged pharms & well away from them, leading protests, attending the Cohen Commission … you name it – she’s done it!

  • Michael Tims

    Yes indeed Elizabeth – “book burning and superstition run rampant”. Meanwhile, Harper and his minions actually lie as they claim their actions are based on science and not ideology. What a load! Their ideology is to undermine science, responsible democratic governance and truth telling, while they support a raw capitalism and corporate dominion, colonialism and environmental devastation. In choosing this ideology they ignore the other ideology of a capitalism that can be firmly yoked to sustainability, democracy and real responsibility. Dark lords indeed!!!

  • Don Squire

    It seems that the sooner Steven Harper is stopped the sooner Canada can get back to being Canada.

  • http://www.facebook.com/wmroger.mcleish Wm Roger McLeish

    The more I hear about Harper’s destructive and controlling policies to silence science in favor of monopolistic capitalists who don’t give a damn about our environment, the more obvious comes the need to remove him and the Conservatives from power. Together with the US Republicans and the banking mafia’s they are in a position to destroy democracy as we know it.

    • Bob_Hearns

      ‘Democracy as we know it’ has already been destroyed. The elite, both political and financial, are spitting in our faces as they do what they please.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dennis.davey.12 Dennis Davey

    This man is the most dangerous person ever to come to power in Canada” OUR” values and democracy are being slowly eroded by an unethical dictator who demonstrates nothing but contempt for democratic govt. It is imperative this clear and present danger be removed from power next election. The N.D.P., Liberals and Greens MUST come together and run one canditate in each riding to avoid splitting the vote. It would be disasterous for” OUR” Canada if Harper retains power in 2015.

    • http://www.facebook.com/wayne.j.froese Wayne Froese

      Council of Canadians has it right, pursuing the Harper majority fraud by any means possible NOW. Harper machine is undoubtedly prepared for 2015; as Huff Post put it, his Cons happily break the law to gain and hold power. The 2011 Election was a fraud – follow the thread: same percentage of the popular vote as the prev. Minority gov’t; dozens of swing ridings won over, many by the barest of margins; the precedent of illegal campaign overspending (proven in court); and the ROBOCALLS. Fraud is the ONLY thing that makes sense of what resulted.

      Harper’s biggest new weapon: stupid opponents. Whistling past the graveyard with delusions of daddy’s-coat-tails Justin regaining a majority. I wretch whenever I see MSM clucking and cooing and singing his praises. What ALL opposition should be doing is single-mindedly setting about to evict Harper. Kinda’ like Joyce Murray and Elizabeth here (thank you) are trying to impress upon the respective parties, with COOPERATION. But what do the candidates do? Purposely distort and misrepresent what that actually means, in order to shoot it down and in vain seek their own futile causes.

      As much as I disdain Harper (not my prime minister), his opponents appear to be his equal. Short-sighted, self-serving, none of them made of the right stuff. Joyce and Elizabeth are our last, best hope: listen to them.

      • Seeking Truth

        … believes what others have speculated that the Liberal behaviour has proven that they are merely TORY 2, so refuse to join up with the other parties in opposition to defeat TORY 1. What hubris! (my whole family background has been Liberal; the ONLY party I ever joined was the PCs until P McKay betrayed David Orchards support. I wholly support environmentalism, as our environment is THE MILLENNIAL SURVIVOR, & IT GIVES LIFE TO ALL BEINGS.)

    • jimmyjames

      Absolutely! We can not permit a splitting of the progressive vote into two camps and give this republican jerk a chance to further damage what was once a great coutnry for all to enjoy. Just as in the US, the gap between the rich and poor is growing faster than ever under Tea Party Steve. Come on NDP/Liberal/Greens. Work it out and combine our efforts and remove this repressive, lying, hypocrit. PLEASE! Perhaps Ms. May can lead this charge?

  • Elfrida

    Thank you Elizabeth for doing all this research and keeping us informed. It is frightening how Harper is slowly deleting openess, controling research, privatizing for individuals profits. i live part time in USA and to me he is a Republican in all his actions – fight for the rich and let the poor fight for themselves!,

  • Doug Ronson

    Well put Frank and everyone else! Elizabeth what can we do? We all know it’s wrong, so it boils down to what legal actions can be taken by us, the people. And what can our scientists do? They have a unique position within our democracy, working for us, not Steve, and thereby have an obligation to report to the people. They do not work for a private company. Is there not a legal way, under the Charter for example, for it to be revealed that this government’s policy is prohibiting this obligation thereby thwarting knowledge and freedom of speech? I’m reaching here, but there has to be a way to undo or begin to undo what SH has done now and not the next election.
    Let me know if I can help.

    • Fred Brailey

      Doug is on the “right track” (sic). We are sick and tired of SH’s dictatorial leadership. SH+it is BIG trouble for Canada. Just don’t say it out loud!

  • Rosalinde Schulze

    OMG….there he goes again spinning his Action Plan at the expense of the Scientific community. And the scary thing is that Conservative ads are more expensive than the Kits Coast Guard Station was to run for one year. And it would appear we can presently do no nothing about it except make sure that everyone knows what the Cons are doing to our Canada. Thank you Elizabeth for your info.

    • Seeking Truth

      well, the eminently courageous insider whistle-blower (much muzzled & life-threatened), Shelley Ann Clark, insists that the 1985 FTA was a done-deal handing over Canada to be the 51-54 State of USA. Apparently her boss, the 3rd negotiator & official shredder Germain Denis, was given a US medal!!!! When clearing out files after the so-called negotiations, she came across an Implementation Agenda – a year by year subtle changing our country until after 30 years, NOTHING COULD BE DONE ABOUT IT!!!. 2015 WILL BE THAT YEAR & the Cons. Gov. is changing our country as fast as it can! Before that happens, our citizens MUST see the complete & unadulterated Free Trade Agreement. Apparently, all those in the know (politicians, lawyers, journalists) are so intimidated that they remain silent & refuse to do anything about it..

  • goldieponie

    We are on Orwell’s ‘ANIMAL FARM’. Time to get rid of the piggie and their cronies.

    • http://twitter.com/owl700 Rose B.

      Worse yet, we are in Orwell’s 1984. Scary and dangerous

  • http://www.facebook.com/gayle.cross.37 Gayle Cross

    Canadians need to constantly hear about the actions Harper is taking to ruin this country. They need to hear it day after day. They need to be reminded about each and every decision and how it impacts us as citizens and they especially need to hear this when election time comes around. There seems no other way to end the environmental, intellectual, and democratic impact of the Harper reign but to vote him out. Let’s get together on this Canada!

  • rcreeker

    Huzzah. It might help to publish the actual emails from Michelle Wheatley and the DFO. I keep encountering critics of our protests against these sorts of government activity that we are not being specific and “evidentiary” in our critiques.

  • Nain

    If one thinks carefully about the governments around the world which have muzzled and eventually “disappeared” the intellectual elite, the scientists and educators in their countries, this controlling and small minded Canadian government is becoming more and more scary. This is especially true and we no longer have a free and unbiased fouth estate. At times, the almost daily examples of the erosion of Canadian democracy must be making our WWII vets cringe and weep for renewed loss. And my dad would roll over in his grave, realizing so many people refuse to take the necessary steps to be informed waiting instead for someone to tell them what to do and think. We are squandering the gifts his generation won for us. We need to wake up and act before it is all of us who are muzzled, too. Chilling may just be too mild a word.

  • Nathan

    As a someone one on the left of the political spectrum I have no difficulty in understanding how those with a similar political bent can be outraged by this. What I can’t understand is how those on the right aren’t similarly appalled?

    Where is the respect for the citizenry by those elected to do it’s bidding? Not only is this an affront to anything that even resembles responsible public policy (or freedom and democracy for that matter) it is a middle finger to the taxpayer (a group of people I thought the conservatives said they were keen on). We paid for this research! It is not for Ottawa to decide which parts of the research we paid for are made available to us through scientific publication. It’s ours; if it is fit for peer reviewed publication then get out of the way and let it be published so I can receive the knowledge my tax dollars funded.

    If you are politically conservative and ok with this then there is no nicer way to put it: you are a giant hypocrite.

    • http://www.facebook.com/gretchen.schwarz.5 Gretchen Schwarz

      Here is what I have heard from the pro-Conservative camp: “I trust Harper. He must have good reasons for doing this.” and “All politicians are dishonest, unethical and immoral. At least Harper feels the same way as I do about abortion and gays.” and “He may not be perfect, but we have no other choices.” Hope that helps!

      • Nathan

        It is this aspect of the modern conservative mind set that irks me the most: utterly failing to hold those they elect to any kind of standard whilst continuously, relentlessly claiming the moral high ground. The utter lack of self awareness is just stunning to behold. They campaign on being better then hide behind ‘well everyone does it’ when they are caught (repeatedly) behaving as bad or worse.

      • Concerned Citizen

        That’s pretty much bang on. They are bible thumping creationist, OK I don’t know that for sure – but it fits the mold.
        They also like to give Harper a whole lot of credit for steering us through the tough times, that’s a laugh.

        The mind of this govt is like that of those that vote for them — CLOSED.

    • Tom Supra

      Read ‘The Armageddon Factor’ by Marci McDonald. Enlightening – oh and Marci told me herself how even Canadian media, including CBC ignored it when it came out.

  • Karin

    There is only one solution to this trend that will make future politicians think twice: Impeachment and turf Stephen Harper out of the country for treason.

  • quaredunt

    Getting at the heart of the problem, Elizabeth!
    What do you make of Mulcair’s very recent statements in Washington regarding climate change?

  • Brenda Skinner

    Thank you for continuing to do what you do so well, Elizabeth. Never give up.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000689638502 Ron Wilton

    Conventional wisdom is indeed “evidence based decision making”, but in harperland the dictum is “decision based evidence making”.

  • http://twitter.com/s_elves Steve Elves

    Absolutely appalling and disgusting. The Harper government is not only repressive, it is obviously paranoid. Thanks for bringing this to our attention, Ms. May.
    I urge everyone to share this message as far and wide as they can.

  • Fred Brailey

    Elizabeth: Thanks so much for your vigorous defense of our democratic ideals. While Ottawa would claim the high ground, its policies undermine democracy here and abroad. It is an unfortunate fact that Canada follows the direction of the Whitehouse and the Pentagon, not to mention the CIA and a dozen other “intelligence” agencies.

  • Audrey and Richard Copeland

    Thank you writing. We are paying attention. All the best.

  • ChristianJustice

    Elizabeth May, you have no idea how much I wish you were running for Liberal Leadership. You are a true Canadian leader and this reality is so desturbing, all I can hope is that it will spell doom for this corrupt (both morally and legislatively) government.

  • Ron Krupovich

    Science is an ongoing search for truth. Government exists to serve all citizens and the political parties we elect have an ethical duty to govern for us all.

    If science is politicized, it ceases to be science and is transformed into political spin designed to serve the interests of the privileged few at the expense of the rest of Canadians–and indeed (since science is a human, not a national, practice) all world citizens.

    I am increasingly concerned about a governing party that continues to overstep its authorities. A governing party has the right to formulate policies–but it does not have the right to suppress the truth, to manipulate Canadians, or to politicize the Public Service (whose purpose, after all, is to provide “objective” advice to whatever party happens to be elected to govern).

    As Canadians, we have a right to access information from our government–especially since it exists to serve us and its operations are funded from our tax dollars. Why are the Tories hiding information from us and why are they so afraid of the truth? Why are they nervous about using the best information available to make the best policy decisions?

    Ron Krupovich
    Carleton Place, Ontario

    • http://www.facebook.com/MoodyJane Jane Sproull Thomson

      Brilliant, Ron; wish I could put it so well.

      • Ron Krupovich


  • TerriRobson

    A group of citizens and Scientists in the U.S. have come together and are encouraging citizens to bring Science back to the Whitehouse, maybe we could start something like that here. http://www.ucsusa.org
    It is a good site full of info and reports on various industries, and the fight to bring fact based Science back to the table.

  • annev54

    Can you please also examine the real science (rather than the faith-based belief) regarding industrial turbines and carbon dioxide etc.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Robert-Anthony/100001392675864 Robert Anthony

    The “left” has to unite to rid our Canada of Conservative regime. They’ve already done too much damage.

  • fjwhite

    Has the time come for Canadians to finally take action and follow the lead of the courageous activist who toppled Iceland’s government almost single-handedly (http://snipurl.com/26lj7zl ) or of the Swiss who used their provision for direct democracy combined with a referendum to win tough controls on multi-million dollar payouts to senior executives (http://snipurl.com/26jomwl )?

    Or perhaps things aren’t yet bad enough for the majority of us here to be motivated enough to join a topple Harper movement?

    • http://twitter.com/owl700 Rose B.

      I was just about to say this very thing. I was wondering if there is anything in Canadian law that could be used to topple this dictator.

  • http://twitter.com/derykhouston deryk houston artist

    The only answer is for the left to unite and stop the splitting of votes.

    But I must say I am dismayed. Both the Green Party and the NDP supported using fighter jets to solve the conflict in Libya. To me this was a staggering lack of judgment by these two groups and a major mistake. If the left can’t be clear about such basic and core values, then I can;t trust them with my vote. I am not going to vote for anyone until I get a clear message that using fighter jets and brute force to solve world conflicts is not the way to go.

    They must unite and get the basic and core values right. I want to vote for the left.

    (I am aware that the Green Party of Canada has since changed it’s mind about Libya…. but only because they claim they didn;t know that that action was going to be about regime change. This seems odd to me because Harper came out of a very early meeting and made it very clear that this was going to be about regime change. )

    Even though “Regime change” is against international law because it would mean total chaos around the world if countries went about regime change without declaring war.

    • http://twitter.com/ericwaltongpc Eric Walton

      Deryk houstan artist – the GPC never “changed its mind” and in fact Elizabeth May was the only MP to vote against the extension of the mission. (she was not yet elected an MP when the first vote was taken). Please go back and look at the green party press releases around the Libyan intervention and you will see that we did not support an escalation of the NATO military intervention/regime change operation because we felt the African Union Peace Plan diplomatic track should have at the minimum
      been given a chance to succeed -or fail – given the very real risks of internal and external destabilization.
      Events both in Libya and the region -especialy in Mali-has proven that our analysis was well grounded and the story is far from over.
      Furthermore we were concerned that the misapplication of the Responsibilty To Protect doctrine would burn bridges with Russia and China – see Syria.

  • Mike Bray

    The root of our problems is not having written rules limiting the powers of the prime minister. Australia, N.Z. and Britain have written rules, we do not. As long as a pm can use all available tools to control his caucus, he can do just about whatever he wants. The award winning book Democratizing the Constitution has some excellent solutions. Please get a copy and help restore responsible government.

  • Shala

    Dear Elizabeth, I think you are marvellous and the kind of woman I wish could rally all women in Canada to vote all men right out of office. In this day and age, I believe there are women well-educated and capable of running a country, after all, women have run households for centuries. Women would pay attention to the human misery that will be caused if we don’t slow down the depletion of our planet. How would one go about convincing women that they could do it?

    • Catherine

      Excellent idea! Let’s reverse roles: women in power, men at home!


      Do you really think ALL women???
      May I remind you of Christy Clark?
      We should stay away from generalizations on this subject and be more objective.

  • wendy

    Elizabeth, dear Elizabeth, what a different Canada we would have if you were Prime Minister! Thank you for all you bravely do.

  • Chris

    Elizabeth, thank you again. The NDP are proving a big disappointment on issues like this–I guess they are going for the “centrist” vote? But this huge battle has to be fought in the open–it extends to Big Pharma’s tightening grip on “health” care too–on which Alan Cassels is fighting a great fight. But this stuff is not getting through to the general public via the big media–how is this going to be broken, as it needs to be broken? But keep fighting!

  • http://twitter.com/etenebrislux Michael Marsh

    Great article Elizabeth. Don’t loose heart, we are all listening

  • Jr

    I think it’s time the people held their own “round-table” discussions, and decide once and for all what action to take. Waiting on Comrade Harper’s term to end is tantamount to contributing to the actions he takes. We need to do something, and soon. Waiting until 2015 will find us in agreements we can’t undo or stop until the “promised” time-frames he gave them are done. (31 years on the FIPPA deal http://www.vancouverobserver.com/politics/canada-china-fippa-agreement-unconstitutional-treaty-law-expert-says) for JUST ONE example of his destructive actions against the people-owned resources and chumminess with people who are looking to exploit Canada and her resources without giving Canadians ANYTHING in return.. except huge tailing-ponds, fractured lands and spoiled water-ways.

    There must be a legal team somewhere that can find laws and regulations that can be used against Harper? I mean seriously, he’s proven himself to be an enemy of the people and has literally set himself up as the despot ruler of Canada.

    Is there no impeachment or non-confidence vote that can be brought against him to stall any more of the destructive plans he hasn’t yet implemented, but obviously will as all we are doing (seemingly) is writing on blogs expressing our frustration and to his paid staff who NEVER answer back… 22 emails with only cursory responses and not a single answer to any of my questions (regarding Kits Base, Enbrigde/Keystone, science muzzling and repealing laws that were setup to protect our resources).
    So, we need action from our communities and soon. We need more people to shout their frustration and disgust at Comrade Harper, and get that loser out of our government before we don’t have a country to call ours.

    • Jr
    • http://twitter.com/etenebrislux Michael Marsh

      The only way he can be removed from office is through the Governor General (GG). But there are some problems.

      Firstly, the GG was appointed by S Harper and Mr. Johnston (the GG) has some alleged connections to the Mulroney AirBus scandle which some say netted him the job. This may suggest that his decisions may sway in favour of his benifactor.

      Second is the method of the request for use of the Royal prerogative. (that is the power of the crown)http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Royal_Prerogative. It cannot be by email or protesting on the streets, it must be in writing and must be in a specific formate. It must also come from the majority of the populace.

      So if you can find 10 million people or so to sign a request to remove S Harper from office he is out. If not he is there till 2015 and given the riding manipulation going on today, he could be emperor for life.

      As it is, with David Johnston in place nothing will happen, unless, David Johnston grows a concience, in which case he could remove him tomorrow. That though is highly unlikely.

      The powers of the Governor General. http://www.cpsa-acsp.ca/papers-2009/Donovan.pdf

      • Jr

        Thanks for that Michael

  • John Bunge

    Lawrence Martin’s book “Harperland” documents the stealthy increase in the restricting of information available to the public, and the misinformation similarly distributed by the CPC. If we don’t act, we’ll get what they think is good for us. Come on the rest of us!!

  • Micah Taylor Thornbury, On

    It would be a good idea if all of the people who are disgusted with the Harper Conservatives would write to their MPs and tell them what they think. Write a concise
    calm statement defending the right of free speech and in defence of our scientists, use that statement to get everybody you can think of to sign it as a petition.
    Perhaps you could consider adding “I will not vote for any candidate or party that uses attack ads.” Talking to each other doesn’t do much good.

  • Jr

    I made a commment but it appeared far below, which the body of basically says the same thing you did (without the attack ads part, which is also a good point).
    The problem with writing them is they just ignore it.. sending you a cursory “we got your letter” (automated I believe as the structure is the same in all) but never “responding” to the questions asked.
    Maybe if we all did it at the same time?

  • Terry Robinson

    It’s time for scientists (Canadian and otherwise) to take more drastic measures – refuse to be silenced. It’s a perfect opportunity for civil disobedience.

  • Jerome Krause

    The political control of the work of scientists must stop. No free society should accept this constraint on thought and idea exchange.
    Jerome Krause Ottawa

  • Kathryn-Jane Hazel

    Okay, so we’re all agreed – we don’t like this. So what do we do? The federal election is more than three years away. The Canadian public seems largely indifferent to the threat this creates to our democracy. How do we change those attitudes?

  • Lise Chevrette

    The only thing we can do to change the current trend is to mobilize NOW; let’s organize and prepare for the 2015 elections NOW. It is not enough to be justifyably indignant about the Harper Government; we have to prepare far in advance for the onslought of negative ads, american republican style campain they will undoubtedly stage in the years to come to control the message and fool the population again. Let’s be ready for the fight of our life, for democracy, and for freedom including the freedom to research, share and publish. I knew Harper was dangerous, but I never thought we would get to this point; I am utterly disgusted!

  • KootenayCoyote

    & as with those other admirable Fascists the Nazis, real science (other than exploitation & military technology) is replaced by pseudo-science, especially regarding climate; & social issues such as economics, poverty & rehabilitation.

  • Geoff Craven

    Thanks for this Elizabeth. Please let us know what the concerned people of Canada can legally do about this. I am angry and appalled at the lengths to which the ‘conservatives’ will go to manipulate the truth and to deny facts.

  • toby dent

    Scientists need to stand together against this corporate government’s repression and regression. I am ashamed of these unethical hooligans and know they will not succeed. When real trouble in the fossil fuel industry arises which is happening as we speak…they will lose their jobs: the sooner the better. Government for profit, power and secrecy is no government at all. Broadcast this news to the public, and call Harper to account. These actions are truly dangerous to science and to the people of Canada. Thank you Elizabeth May for all your fine work!

  • Concerned Canadian

    It’s what we can expect from this administration. It’s totlly apauling. I don’t vote for them and I want to know how I can do more to stop this.

  • Marcia

    Elizabeth, this is an important issue to address, but Kristi Miller may not be the best example to support your point, as she’s been speaking quite freely to media this week about her new project on the health of BC salmon.

    • http://www.facebook.com/star.morris.35 Star Morris

      True! Kristi Miller is now ‘allowed’ to speak … however this may be a ‘red herring’. As Elizabeth points out, there are many ways in which science can be manipulated and/or the science ‘truth’ suppressed.

      The Cohen Commission inquiry is a good example. At the inquiry, there was
      significant disagreement – based on the CFIA lab’s inability to confirm other
      (including Dr. Miller) labs’ positive findings for ISAv – as to whether the
      virus was present in BC wild salmon. The equipment and software used by the
      CFIA lab has been shown to be less sensitive (Cohen Report – Vol 1, pg

      So the question is … ‘even though Dr Miller is publicly speaking, if her
      findings show the presence of disease and an association with farmed salmon,
      WILL her findings be recognized by the CFIA and ACTED ON?’

      If they haven’t already, hopefully, the CFIA will take steps to address this.
      As the government body of authority, the CFIA’s response and actions are

      “SALMON CONFIDENTIAL” … Excellent documentary – share widely!

      I am in conversation with my MP on this and invite others to DO likewise!

  • Lin Grist

    Of course I am enraged that that the federal government is taking our money and muzzling the very people who will provide us with the information that we – the public pay for and need to make good and education decisions on any number of issues. . The muzzling of voices that may or may not agree with you is a a very slippery slope.
    I am tired of being enraged by the lack of transparency and due and democratic process of the current federal administration. What can we do as individual Canadian citizens to get our voices heard?

  • Reece dolezsar

    How does this current government sleep at night. This is just awful, we need more science, promotion of scientists and freely shared science data. I just don’t understand how the current government is able to do the things it does. Elizabeth May you are a goddess in my eyes.

  • Simon Lindley

    What upsets me as much as the gagging of science is the apathetic nature of our general population. A vast majority of Canadians don’t seem to care as their democratic rights and access to information are taken away from them. This is as evil as the rise of fascism in the 1930′s and it is happening in the same manner. When people seek blame for their woes, when they have less and less resources available to them (due to the rampant engine of wasteful, unmitigated consumerism), they follow the extreme that is rarely grounded in fact or science, but escapism. Harper’s rise feeds off of fear, finger-pointing, enemy-creating and idealistic preaching, much like Hitler and other oppressive fascist regimes have done in the past.

    • Jon Lutjen

      No one cares because they are well trained!

  • Jon Lutjen

    So should we listen to our leaders to promote fossil fuels to pay off our debt? Brought to you by the same politicians that told us we were better off not paying the debt off in the early 80′s, and look were we are at now. I don’t believe for a second that selling off our valuable resources with ever pay for our debt because fossil fuels only bring us 10% GDP. Anyone do the math? How many trillions have to be made to pay off billions of debt at 10% GDP return? I don’t think there is enough resources to pay off the debt like our politicians are telling us. To them debt is a profiting way of life for the well off in this country and globally and putting us further into debt then we are now only make them richer. We are in this debt because we listened to our greedy well off politicians bought off by corporate swine’s to tell us we were better to carry the debt. And here we are being led down the same road of disappear again, but this time the debt will be in the trillions not billions mark my words. We need to create jobs with better GDP and we will pay off our debt. We should not make way for these greedy corporate swine’s to put us further into debt because they are the ones with Swiss bank accounts and pay zero tax to Canada. We have a chance to change the 50 year trend of these heartless greedy swine’s, they have put us into this mess because they profit from our debt and they will always be well off because there are other countries to destroy in this world. We need to conserve what we have left to be well off for the future because if we have nothing we will not be well off……….Mark My Words……..=O)

    So should we listen to our leaders to promote fossil fuels to pay off our debt? Brought to you by the same politicians that told us we were better off not paying the debt off in the early 80′s, and look were we are at now. I don’t believe for a second that selling off our valuable resources with ever pay for our debt because fossil fuels only bring us 10% GDP. Anyone do the math? How many trillions have to be made to pay off billions of debt at 10% GDP return? I don’t think there is enough resources to pay off the debt like our politicians are telling us. To them debt is a profiting way of life for the well off in this country and globally and putting us further into debt then we are now only make them richer. We are in this debt because we listened to our greedy well off politicians bought off by corporate swine’s to tell us we were better to carry the debt. And here we are being led down the same road of disappear again, but this time the debt will be in the trillions not billions mark my words. We need to create jobs with better GDP and we will pay off our debt. We should not make way for these greedy corporate swine’s to put us further into debt because they are the ones with Swiss bank accounts and pay zero tax to Canada. We have a chance to change the 50 year trend of these heartless greedy swine’s, they have put us into this mess because they profit from our debt and they will always be well off because there are other countries to destroy in this world. We need to conserve what we have left to be well off for the future because if we have nothing we will not be well off……….Mark My Words……..=O)

  • http://twitter.com/mihaychuk James Mihaychuk

    Worth reading: Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Articles 19 & 27. http://www.un.org/en/documents/udhr/

    • http://twitter.com/mihaychuk James Mihaychuk

      19. Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.

    • http://twitter.com/mihaychuk James Mihaychuk

      27. 1) Everyone has the right freely to participate in the cultural life of the community, to enjoy the arts and to share in scientific advancement and its benefits.
      (2) Everyone has the right to the protection of the moral and material interests resulting from any scientific, literary or artistic production of which he is the author.

  • Tom Supra

    Elizabeth, as horrible as this is, Canadians seem to ignoring these messages (much to my dismay) – I think we need to hear ‘why’ the cons are doing this. It can’t just be to fast-track tar sands development – it must be something more palatable to the average citizen. Personally, I think it is more about the religious/secular debate. The simpliatic “God will take care of the earth” argument. Media always ignores these perspectives imho.

  • maindrains

    What makes this worse is the contrast between the Harperites and the Obamamammas! I believe it was in the state of the union address or shortly thereafter.. at least.. recently that Obama, ststing that the public paid for the science and so have every right to access its findings made it compulsory that all publicly funded research was to be made immediately available to everyone who wanted it. What a difference. We are indeed going back to some kind of dark age

  • Anti

    Politics around the world now is being carried out by a few morally bankrupt psychopaths with a mentality of the bringing back the Spanish Inquisition in all things they do not like or pushes their agenda forward in crippling free and honest thinking, these people mainly the Bankster inbred Families who for generations have planned world domination for their own needs, they need to be iradicated, no other word for it, they are soulless empty husks of humanity…. I shudder at what is being done in the name of ‘LAW’ these days..

  • Concerned_Samaritan

    What can I do about this, other than obviously voting the current regime out?

  • Dr. Rosemary Gray-Snelgrove

    Thank you for this clear message. As citizens we have to make known to politicians our reactions. This is appalling.

  • SK

    I smell the PM behind this suppression of inconvenient truth. Sounds just like the Bush White House and their suppression of scientific evidence that was contrary to their politics. Science generates ideas based on evidence, tests theories by experiment and generally advances truth in our society. The trouble with the truth is that it interferes with dogma and we have a federal government now, dominated by one man, that believes in dogma not fair, practical policies – the dogma of business and the magic of the “marketplace” no matter what the cost to human rights or the environment we ALL depend on to survive on this planet. Harper will be admired by his colleagues in the Mont Pelerin Society and the Bilderberg group but these elite organizations care little for the future of ordinary people. They are too obsessed by the flawed ideas of Friedrich Hayek and Milton Friedman and libertarian economic theories of “free trade.”

  • Liz

    Folly in the extreme to blind the country’s eyes so we cannot see where we are going. I wish I knew more about what to DO about this.

  • Tom Prior

    Hello Green MP: JAN.28 2013 myself and 35 or so West Kootenay folk bussed to Kelowna for Northern Gateway Pipeline hearing. I had registered two years earlier to speak. Three short paragraph into my speech, they cut off my mic. I had been pointing out that Bill C38 and other parts of the omnibus budget could potentially as happened midnight Jan.1 1994 the day NAFTA was signed, causing Mayan and other indian/Mexican to protect what was left of their indian land rights. A civil war started by the poorest bravest people of north america, continues today as a”low level conflict”. I think it is perhaps a bit naive to think rampant corporate fascism twisted around christian democracy will fade away nicely. Let keep our fingers crossed that the courage demonstrated by a few poor Mexican indians will not be lost on Canadians. The longer we wait the deeper the fascist hole gets folks. Its happened before.

  • 12phil34

    Part of the problem is that there are few if any Conservatives with scientific/technical backgrounds. Bunch of poli science majors, small business types, hicks and holy rollers. Sad remnants of a once rational Progressive Conservative party.

  • DNA

    As a graduate student training to be an ecologist I am horrified by this latest chapter in the Haper agenda. Stopping scientists from publishing is censorship on for the whole scientific community. Further censoring grant applications, is nothing short of a crippling blow to free scientific inquiry and free speech.

  • http://www.facebook.com/gilbert.james.33 Gilbert James

    The “Harper Government” poisons everything it touches, absolutely everything, no exceptions.

    What can we do? They are hell-bent. They don’t listen.

    I am a Canadian citizen and I fear our government now.

    P.S. and what the heck is up with Stephen Harper and Barrack Obama having the exact same talking points in regard to Hugo Chavez’s passing? Very odd.

  • ghanderman

    canada sold its soul to china years ago. china is the top offending nation in the world for environmental irresponsibilities (and thats just being polite). actually frank totino, yes, you do get the government you deserve. people have the capacity to educate themselves and be engaged at unprecedented levels thanks to information access…yet the vast majority prefer to engage in hedonistic self-serving divisive activities that end up hurting everyone (since we are all living in an infinitely inter-connected ecosystem). to anyone who was paying attention to the chinese trade talks back in the 80s and 90s this was all a foreseeable trajectory. in china it is illegal, read: illegal, for any media outlet to speak on the environment without first being vetted through the govt. what does that tell you?

  • l. Bennett

    This is just the start and I myself would like to see a political party in this country telling the truth. Yes we are being taken over by the NEW WORLD ORDER and Steven is their puppet. I want a politician that will stand up to this and make it public knowledge so it can be stopped before it is too late. These policies are all coming from the Builderberg meetings. The politicians and elite (banksters) meeting in secret to make policies against the world. Wake up Canada, look at alternative new sources please the regular media is owned by them, you are not getting the real goods. And no I am not a extremest or conspiracy nut, get your head out of the sand.

  • angele

    I agree with Frank, ‘we’ the people need to get more people involved or awake to the real facts, so that ‘we’ the people are served by honest politicians.. The system must change and the change comes from within… and that process starts before the age of five, being raised by parents who take the time to answer questions intelligently and have school systems that encourage ‘free’ thought. I am so grateful to live in Canada and not Tibet where the people are imprisoned because China wants the land. Harper and Campbell have sold Canada to the highest bidder, all in the name of giving us Canadians a life of ease. The Revolution starts within people, and the internet is now the web of life, may you figure out who is speaking the truth.

  • Georges

    I have been following A. Morton’s report on this topic and as a sports fisherman I am really alarmed. It appears that no matter what science proves day after day and year after year, the puppets leading our country bow unceremoniously to the big corporations’ demands (in the interest of the country, of course!). Whether it is the fishing industry or the oil industry (and many others I’m sure,) governmental policies usually reflect what “the Big Boys” want – make money- regardless of the long term consequences. Back to fishing now and another example of big interest interference (commercial industry). Has anyone seen the latest regulations on halibut fishing for the recreational sector? It is mind boggling! DFO now expects a fisherman to release a halibut that is more than roughly 60 lbs. Have they really tried to do this safely for both fish and fisher with a 100 lb. halibut? Scary. Furthermore, and in my opinion, if I understand it right, even more insulting is the option offered. One can buy a halibut quota from a commercial fisherman that will allow you to keep bigger fish! Even though the recreational fishing industry is far more lucrative for the local economy than the commercial one, the power of the Big Boys still remain. And now the big question remains- what can we all do to stop this nonsense?

  • Louise Peacock

    Wow! This is indeed very chilling. How about we start a petition on the Care site in this regard? The government needs to see that we, the people, will not stand by idly and put up with this sort of repression. 1984 lives.

  • Ellen Polley

    Good grief! The witch hunts have begun! What next? I hope Canadians have had enough! It’s time for the Conservatives to go.

  • Ron Mackenzie

    Right on, Elizabeth! Thank goodness we have you as a watch person! I would never have known (not that I’m surprised) about this. When a government is afraid of sharing information it is usually because they have something shameful to hide — certainly true in this case.

  • http://www.facebook.com/katiemgibbs Katie Gibbs

    I’m part of a group of scientists that recently launched a campaign on the muzzling issue. Please check it out: http://www.scienceuncensored.ca.

  • David J Parker

    George Orwell was out by about 30 years it seems. Newspeak and absolute political control are now the norm. War is Peace and Tar Sands is Ecologically Beneficial. The problem is too many people actually believe this stuff or are too scared to speak out. This is how Hitler started and people didn’t think it was too serious then either.

  • bill schneider

    This is absolutely astounding. “1984″ keeps getting closer and closer.

  • http://www.facebook.com/star.morris.35 Star Morris

    Kristi Miller is now ‘allowed’ to speak … however this may be a ‘red herring’. As Elizabeth points out, there are many ways in which science can be manipulated and/or the science ‘truth’ suppressed.

    The Cohen Commission inquiry is a good example. At the inquiry, there was
    significant disagreement – based on the CFIA lab’s inability to confirm other
    (including Dr. Miller) labs’ positive findings for ISAv – as to whether the
    virus was present in BC wild salmon. The equipment and software used by the
    CFIA lab has been shown to be less sensitive (Cohen Report – Vol 1, pg

    So the question is … ‘even though Dr Miller is publicly speaking, if her
    findings show the presence of disease and an association with farmed salmon,
    WILL her findings be recognized by the CFIA and ACTED ON?’

    If they haven’t already, hopefully, the CFIA will take steps to address this.
    As the government body of authority, the CFIA’s response and actions are

    “SALMON CONFIDENTIAL” … Excellent documentary – share widely!

    I am in conversation with my MP on this and invite others to DO likewise!

  • lizzsicle

    Everyone join in our Harper protest!!! April 6th 2013 and bring all your friends!

  • Merlin


    The most damaging misrepresentation has been his false assertion that the Foundation is involved in research and development of nuclear weapons. This lie is compounded by Mr. Keshe’s country of origin being Iran. No wonder the Belgium government had been denying his requests for permits to build a manufacturing facility. Many potential employees were left un-hired, and the technology has been tied up as a result.

    This all came to a head last June when Mr. Keshe was traveling to Mexico and was held by the Canadian government for 11 days when he passed through their airport on his way, and was then sent back to Belgium. While wrongfully incarcerated in Canada, he was treated in a manner that resembled some dark tyrannical government with arbitrary rule; ransacking his belongings, copying his proprietary files, stealing his property, abusing his person. Keshe describes this abhorrent treatment for several pages.

  • Boubley

    I once supported Stephen Harper–no longer he is gutting democracy. He’s gotta go next election!!

  • Dennis

    Bank on Canada google Bill Abrams Bank of Canada. We can do this as was done after the second world war, to get out of this recession without disturbing the economy. A new sector of the economy can be created that provides the stage for the transition to prosperity and the healing of our environmental disasters created in the industrial age.

  • Joe Wallach

    This action is of muzzling government scientists is not new, nor is it unique to any political party. I can attest to that PERSONALLY!

  • Doug Marr

    CHILLING !!!

  • Mike

    I hope to soon have a job so that I can help us get rid of him. I’ve been offered funding for a phd, so perhaps it won’t be so long before I can.

    • Mike

      help us, help you, all the same thing of course :-) thank’s for keeping us in the loop, hoping for the best in spite of everything.


    It is absolutely our own fault for this development to have happened, because we condoned these actions by not holding those responsible’s feet to the fire.

    We ALL need to protest and demand an end to the dismantling of our democracies and scientist muzzling activities.

    Demand a meeting with your (useless) MP and make him useful by insisting (s)he take your message to the House for debate and straighten the spine to stand up for improving our collective world.

  • Anon

    Just wait! Ottawa is going to clamp down on all forms of e-mail communication;I smell it coming!

  • phil

    Time to step aside Harper, i’m sure there is a room for you in one of your new prisons

  • Rosemary Mason

    I couldn’t agree more.

  • Dan Carpenter

    http://www.peoplestrust1776.org October 2012 all corporate governments were foreclosed upon under UCC-Universal Comercial Code by which all countries operate. the governments are struggling their last breathe to hold onto the past. it is now a people’s free will world. All necessary data is available on that website. People now are free to follow the puppeteers or speak the truth.

  • Agarnier

    This government gag on scientists is more similar to Hitler’s mindless campagne before the 2nd World War than the Middle Ages. Harper’s stupidity is equiled only by the striking similar mind set, or lack there off, afflicting the US Republican Party. I assume that they would be similar as their programs are both entirely funded by the same oil conglomerates who want to steal our tax dollars for personal profit. Where is the petition to sign to return transparency to Canada’s leadership in environmental sciences? I wager such a petition will garner the signature of millions of irate voters, including mine.

  • Wayne Clark

    Da Fuhrer Harper is a control freak and an narcissistic dictator, that about says it all.

  • Eileen Mackenzie

    Thanks for showing this truly frightening aspect of dictator Harper. where will it all end?

  • Elizabeth Rogers

    This is not only terrifying for scientific work done re climate change, fisheries and fossil fuels, but, as a person with LYME, looking to get better testing, better research and a better educated medical system, this, is also, terrifying in terms of the extent the government will go to muzzle those who are desperately seeking help. This is not just a “green” issue folks….this is a “democratic” issue!

  • T. Johannsen

    I am absolutely appalled at what the Harper Government is doing. Why not a better media coverage – you are doing all the heavy lifting here. Why not a stronger voice from the science community as a whole? No spokesman or association?
    T. Johannsen

  • Murray Lumley

    Right on Elizabeth! Voices like yours may give scientists the courage to speak out – as some have already done. We need government policy based on scientific evidence, not on dogma as we are getting from the Harper right wing Christian conservatives (I am a Christian but not the kind described in Marcy McDonald’s book – ‘The Armageddon Factor’ of 2010)

  • Lee Thompson

    This is outrageous. This Harper Government disgusts me. The Canadian people need to wake the hell up and realize this guy is a tyrant who is deep in the pockets of the greedy Corporations that are apologetically ruining this planet!

  • Aaron Schneider

    Thanks for this posting Elizabeth, how Orwellian canada has become under Harper.
    All the best,

  • Arnold Baker

    This absolutely incredible. How long does Canada have to put up with this government? Do the Conservative MPs not have the guts to stop these travesties?

  • David Wilson

    35,000 in Washington on February 17, 35 in Edmonton was all I heard about in Canada, rule of thumb would be 3,500, you want to blame Harper, fine, he certainly deserves it, but only because he is the epitome, the quintessence, of the INCREDIBLY smug and complacent population of this country. sorry to say it

  • Pissed-off-Canadian

    What’s your top environmental concern? Put it to the outgoing federal commissioner of the environment today at 12:05.- (Maritime noon)
    Here is a prize of a burocrat…only after some oil field worker gave us the problems with “frackin” he finally did have a few words to say about the matter. He obviously does not really want to speak out since he is probably covering his butt in order to get another 6-figure job with an oil company or another government job. I think we have a bunch of wimps in this country who are only looking after their own interest , the hell with everyone else.
    Very few will actually speak out

  • Franklin Taylor

    harper is all about spin. he can not say a truthful thing. he even lies about his marriage. Google, “Laureen Harper gay?” and see what comes up. Supposedly the state of their marriage has been published in foreign newspapers but not in Canada.
    This past weekend the Globe had an article about their 20 years of marriage…I wonder if the taxpayer paid for this propaganda. From what I have heard, newspapers will print favourable stories for a price. On April 6th supposedly protests will be held across the country asking harper to resign because he is not listening to the people.
    This muzzling of scientists is a crime in a democracy. Citizens can now do civilian arrests….the first one we should get is harper and his cronies for treason.

  • http://www.facebook.com/hj.wilcox Heather Wilcox

    No science = no truth = no democracy

  • KC

    For Goodness Sake what next? Burn them as witches?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Klaus-bud-Oracle-kaczor/100002528110438 Klaus-bud Oracle-kaczor

    It is sad that only a few Canadians seem to care about these things. This lax attitude could be the result of a general downgrading of the value of scientific information over time by the Harper Dictatorship

  • hamish wilson

    People may not have seen this excellent and relevant cartoon from the Toronto Star.

  • http://www.facebook.com/adolling Adrian Dolling

    A mild counterpoint…

    I not sure Canadians en masse would agree that all government science should be in the public domain.

    There is some (e.g. going on in National Defence) that is of strategic security importance. And this publicly funded work indeed belongs to all of us, yet most of us would agree that at least some of it should remain secret (to Canada, but also from most Canadians). I don’t happen to agree with funding much “defence research” – but cite this example as a counterpoint to the arguments below that infer publication is a necessity if the funding was public.

    I suspect there may also be some strategic reasons within DFO for limited concerns about publication of inside knowledge – as within other departments or organisations (e.g. Bank of Canada). Just as with corporate insider trading rules, there are international competitive reasons for a level of government control over publication.

    I don’t believe any of this applies to Dr Kristi Miller – but I am not privvy to her research.

    Interested to learn what others think.

  • Sheera mad as hell!

    This is KING HARPER acting with impunity…vote him out…impeachment comes to mind! Clark was impeached for putting up gas prices .5 cents and we let this creep get away with environmental destruction. He believes he has some kind of divine right and we have to bow down…:( Thank you Elizabeth for taking him on, you have great courage. Fight the good fight. I will vote for you. In West Vancouver they always vote for the Conservatives…I always vote GREEN! TRUE BLUE!

  • Ben

    I am not surprised that our current government would muzzle truth.

  • Alain Charbonneau

    The reason why we have a Harper regime is simple mathematics. We split the vote and Harper wins. I have a question for you Ms.May, why do you sit in your corner all by yourself when you could be part of the official opposition? You can answer me privately if you wish: vendmamaisonalain@yahoo.ca

  • XKR

    Unfortunately research takes money, money most research scientists do not have. The one that cuts the check makes the rules and the world is changing fast. Soon almost all scientific research, and the results that count, will be owned and privy to few. Don’t believe me, just look at some of the garbage that makes it to peer reviewed journals.

  • Lin

    It shocks me that it’s taken this long for Harper to be seen for who he is (or thinks he is). But how to change it? There needs to be radical changes in government instead of just replacing one bad one with another. I agree with Dennis who earlier posted that the other parties should join forces instead of splitting the vote. I think the NDP and Green Party should get together and run as NDP/Green. At least give us a chance of winning. Too many Canadians have become immune to politics because it’s the same B.S. over and over and over. Get together now so there’s time to plan an intelligent campaign. And promise something you can actually DO. I’ve worked in newspapers most of my life and the fax machine runs continually with government releases of lie and lie after lie. Some of them are unbelievable and I have to wonder “Who believes this crap?” But obviously lots of people do. I personally think we should have referendums and let the people decide on these issues. These morons from the top right down through the MLAs are the ’1984′ of George Orwell.

  • “we have the right to know”

    I am very dismayed at the government’s actions in reducing the scope and effectiveness of the research and monitoring that has in the past been conducted on behalf of the Canadian public by federally-employed scientists. As strongly as I feel about it, however, it is my sense that nothing is gained by making dramatic comparisons to book burning. Let us use the language we would like to hear from others – honest description of the issue and reasoned arguments. Let us speak in reasonable terms to those whose levels of knowledge and interest are capable of being increased, let us try to persuade them to support a reversal of the government’s closure of programs and of the excessive limitations it has imposed on the remaining scientists’ freedom of speech.

  • LanMan

    Any scientist (indeed any academic) worth their salt would never sign an agreement to limit the scope of their research or seek prior agreement before publishing the results of their research. More to the point, any government worthy of the democracy in which we (presumably still) live would never demand this of their employees. Apparently our current government is so fearful that “inconvenient truths” might be identified that they consider message control and the gaining of political advantage to be more important than the truth itself.

    I personally still have faith that such paranoia and the resulting suppression of any ideas that conflict with the views of the governing party will ultimately prove to be their undoing. But we are still many months away from the next election – during which these people seem determined to continue to do damage to our Canadian democratic institutions and values.

    Thank God that the Green Party has a presence in the House of Commons and before the national press to blow the whistle when necessary and hold Mr. Harper and his minions to account.

  • Albert Einstein

    Perhaps the U.S. will accept Canadian scientists as refugees.

  • http://www.facebook.com/rocky.racoon.334 Rocky Racoon

    This is FASCISM plain and simple, no if’s or’s but’s about it. It is part of a scientist job to publish their work as the earlier conditions acknowledge. This needs to go to the Supreme Court it is harrassment and it is the Canadian Taxpayer whom their scientists work for and whom they serve not the Conservative government and their agenda. Publishing their findings is in the public interest and they have a right to this knowledge. The government is supposed to govern not RULE. AGain Fascism Harassment take them to court. What are they going to stop the court from publishing their finding next if they don’t like the outcome?

  • Brad

    Rose you have the first comment and you are absolutely right. Anything that is funded with government money hence our tax dollars should be open to the Canadian public for review. I am getting sick and tired of this Harper government systematically tearing this country to pieces and our freedom along with it. We need new government and new election rules so the party that actually gets the most votes is in office. Also we need a way for the Canadian people to remove a party from power if it is not working in the best interest of the people no matter where they are in their term. That would really make sure they stop the funny business if they knew they could get fired anytime. I know that if I were to do serious things the company I contract to didn’t want I would lose my contract period.

  • Charles Justice

    Somebody has obviously thought this through pretty clearly to come to the point of designing and executing a plan to stop scientists from uncovering inconvenient truths. I wonder who that somebody was? Three guesses.

  • C Williams

    George Orwell was a prophet. Harper runs the Ministry of Truth, and every pronouncement from the PMO is doublespeak.

  • Leslie Hill

    Is book burning next?

  • Becky

    It truely is frightening. Canadians need to become more vocal and fight this censorship.
    These policies are reminisent of those of facist Germany!

  • Al Whitney

    I think what we are seeing here and in the US is more and more growing evidence of the sad fact that our political leaders are working for the interests of multi national corporations, especially the ones that want all of us to keep on using fossil fuels even to the point of the destruction of our planet. These kinds of people are only interested in getting as rich as they can while they are alive and the rest of us be damned. I hope and pray there is an afterlife.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jackie-Leginus-Bruce/656486005 Jackie Leginus Bruce

    I pay for this research and this government with my tax dollars I am entitled to all information on the state of our environment and our planet, how dare the scientists be silenced by Harper or any politician I have the right to know.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mike.hunter.9889 Mike Hunter

    Not to diminsh the seriousness of this book burning, don’t forget that science often muzzles science – remember Nancy Olivieri(sp)? Corporate and Government R&D funds come with an inherent chill, even in universities, where government (and that didn;t start with this government) continues to push for applied research at the expense of pure research. Canada needs a new R&D ethic for sure.

  • jimmyscratch


  • jimmyjames

    When conservatives want their ideology to trump facts, science, and reality in general, they distort the facts as with Climate Change, suppress the gathering of facts, as in the long form census, or suppress scientists as they do here, or simply lie as they also did in this case.

    In order to push this right wing neo-con agenda, they need to hide the facts, as the reality of these policies is the opposite of what they claim. Austerity for all but the super-wealthy is the plan. Drive down wages, reduce any social safety net, and join the third world in a race to the bottom so the 1% can further increase their share of the wealth beyond the obscene levels to which it has already risen.

    When the US is talking about the danger of Climate Change, working to try to restrict ownership of guns to protect citizens, and our government is moving in the opposite direction, you know we are out of touch. That’s the problem you encounter when facts, and science are discounted in favor of a failed ideology.

  • Concerned Canadian MD

    This repressive legislation is expected in dictatorships and previous communist countries. This should not be tolerated by the Canadian people.

    What is even worse are the lies that come out of the Harper government.

    These directives are not legislated and should be debated in parliament with a demand for legislation to protect our science.

  • John W. Foster

    Repression of intellectual inquiry, and worse lying about it. 2015 is too late,can’t we find a way to give this gang the heave-ho sooner.?

  • Brighteyes

    How did my beloved Canada fall under the heel of this dictator?

  • Terron Dodd

    Harper and his government are the agents of those who are concerned with MONEY NOW to the extremely rich, with no concern about people in general, their own grandchildren, or whether Earth will even continue to be habitable after them. This is INSANITY as should be obvious to any sane person! They wish to lock this in through the system of “free trade” treaties to make their terrible laws unrepealable by the next government. What can be done? Such politicians should be in jail!

    These people have violated their oath of office, I think, and I don’t see why treaties negotiated by them should be held valid, for one thing.

    Terron Dodd

  • Wesley M. Stevens

    Thanks for the report on the Reform/Alliance muzzling scientific grant applications and reports and government denials that it is a change of policy.

    But the Reform/Alliance muzzling of 2011 voting is getting lost. It was plain fraud. A few Liberal Robocalls and maybe one NDP Robocall have been reported, but not the systematic Robocalls in evidence from PC offices themselves. Has Elections Canada
    been muzzled too?

    – Wesley Stevens, Winnipeg

  • Chuck Tall

    They find it difficult – those to whom truth is an inconvenience.

  • Barbara Drury

    What can we do as concerned Canadians?

  • CACL Royce hamer

    Why leave a message with the censorship on this site and others if you tell an inconvenient truth it will not get published. No matter who is running the blog, May, Harper, same old same old, say what you want but say what we want..or go silent.

  • Syalutsa

    In the face of the ongoing, shocking series of underhanded, anti-democratic moves by the current party in power and their lack of connection or commitment to anything “conservative” or principled, it has become essential for all the opposition parties to band together to run single candidates in key ridings, in order to eliminate the majority position that allows our current party in power in Ottawa to do these things.

  • John Capon

    I am adding one more line to what I just read……

    This is Fascism.

    Call it what it is, please. And put your name on it.

    Come on folks, get out the big sticks.

  • Margaret Brock

    Its absolutely unbelievable, is there any petition being prepared for us to sign and demand a reverse of this insane legislation. Why don’t all the opposition parties just stonewall Mr. Harper to say they will not put up with this? And how about some discussion of taxpayer funds being used for this new Dept. of Religion, its strange that funds can always be found for this type of hyperbole and yet so many good programs are not being funded. Can’t understand why all the opposition parties don’t have more to say about all the crackpot ideas this government has.

  • marie

    Democracy and scientific findings, all highly at risk under the Harper Conservative govt. Scary.

  • Cynthia Bragg

    This 1984 repression is beyond chilling. It is autocratic and repressive in the extreme. When will they start throwing people in prison for researching and telling the truth? Bu what do we do? Outright revolution seems unlikely as too many people believe in the government’s action plan. Harper is covering up the total destruction of the Peace Athabasca delta and all the cancer aboriginal people in the area are getting from living near the tarsands. The people of BC will be the next to suffer. How do we stop this Elizabeth? Thank you for your work and your updates.

  • whimbrell

    Shameful. The government has long attacked the arts and now the scientific community too. Sounds like dictatorship to me.

  • Izabela

    I am amazed about the consistent reduction of our civil liberties and transformation of one of the best democracies in the world to the dictatorship administered by the government that holds the majority that was elected by 39.65% of the Canadian voters. I am a proud Canadian, but I am also an immigrant who came from Poland, the country who was under the communist dictatorship. The actions that are being taken by the Harper government with respect to environment, immigration, science, and many other policies reminds me every time of the system that I lived in under in Poland. How much damage can Harper government do before the next election? Will we be able to reverse these policies by then? Can we assume that Canadians will vote for the new government that will restore the democracy? Do we have enough time before it is too late?

  • Marian Gain

    Elizabeth and fellow citizens, What are your thoughts about the International Tribunal into Crimes of Church and State declaring that Canada is dissolved, and that the Queen of England, the Pope, and Stephen Harper are guilty of crimes against humanity?

  • Elizabeth Miles

    I feel that it is both tragic and ironic that people in other nations are laying their lives on the line to fight for democracy in their countries, while we in Canada are allowing our precious democracy to be whittled away with scarcely a murmer of protest.

  • Disgusted

    Shocking, despicable behaviour of the governing Conservatives convinces Canadians we no longer live in a democracy; they are heading down the path of Nazi repression. What are they waiting for? Heil Harper? Our taxes pay for research;we have every right to the results.

  • Clare Attwell

    Thank you Elizabeth for so articulately spelling out the details of this latest affront to democracy. It is nothing short of shocking – I am sure that many Conservative voters would not be impressed if they realized that Canada was flagrantly behaving like a third world country. What is wrong with our media, that this is not more worthy of news headlines? Oh yeah, the media is mostly owned and controlled by the Thompson group – friends of the Conservatives . . .

    Comments by other readers, suggest outrage that we are paying the bills for a farce – so lets hound the conservative constituency offices for accountability. They have to be made to feel very uncomfortable for this betrayal of democracy.

  • loves Canada

    Do we get the government we deserve? Think of it. Before the last election Harper was in contempt of parliament. Did no one notice? Giving us no national plan, he promoted fear and used our tax money to attack and ridicule the opposition. How insane for Canadian voters to give him a majority government.!

    On the other hand, Stephan Dion had a plan for a sustainable economy and a sustainable environment. But his English wasn’t good and he was easy to ridicule (bully). He refused to stoop to attack adds, expecting that his dignity and integrity would be recognized and appreciated by Canadians. How wrong he was.

    Our news media at all levels went along with Harper and they still do. Why is none of what Elizabeth has told us in the daily news as it should be? Is it too boring compared to murders, and car crashes? Or are the media muzzled also?

    Thanks to these things we now have a totalitarian government which behaves much like the old Soviet government which muzzled its scientists and repressed information and truth. I wish there was a quick fix before everything I love about Canada is destroyed. If there is a way, please let us know what it is and use it now!

  • Marian Gain

    Elizabeth, I truly respect the work that you do. Let’s get real; Canada is not administered by a democracy. A constitutional lawyer I know calls it an elected autocracy. I’m more inclined to call it Fascism. And it seems that one’s comments are screened, and disallowed even here. So yes, it’s all chilling.

    • craigcantin

      Hi Marian.

      I’m not sure what you mean. Comments are posted live and are not held in a queue. Each one is read at some point, to be sure, but out of over 6,000 comments and counting, only two have ever been disallowed.

      If you are having trouble finding a comment on a particular thread, try sorting by date or click on “Load more comments” towards the bottom of the screen.

      - Craig

      • Marian Gain

        Craig, You’re right. Please accept my apologies. I’m accustomed to other sites where posts show up in sequence. On this blog, they appear to be shuffled. Why?

  • Joy Toronto

    It is getting worse. I’ve been away, but why don’t we hear about this in Ontario? Are the journalists that scared of nasty Harper and his cronies?

  • Nipper

    And this is supposed to be a “glorious and free” Canada??

  • Gwen McDonald

    Canadian scientists will not tolerate this autocratic control for long. Either Harper goes, or the brain drain of our scientists will begin. In the interin, let’s hope our scientists thumb their noses at Harper, publish their data in the most prestigious journals they can, present at as many international meetings as possible, and ignore his attempts at control. Then the legal challenges can begin. Harper won’t win.

    Gwen McDonald, Salt Spring Island

  • gord runtz

    Elizabeth, just a big THANK YOU! for continuing to “stand on guard” for the Canada we know & love. You are truly the Queen of Parliament Hill !!!

  • andy stout

    This is what happens when you elect a Christian (fundamentalist) to public office.

    -Andy Stout,


  • Pat McDermott

    WE have to get rid of this government and its politics of repression and intimidation. Absolutely disgusting, let’s not let them get away with this.

  • Maggie

    And how does(n’t) this fit into the Government’s Open Data policy???

  • A. Morrell

    It really shows how the present government is putting multi national corporations interests first in the name of big corporate profits, not Canadian interests. Canadians should wake up and sommunicate to the PMO and DFO in no uncertain terms how we feel about this. It is absolutely unacceptable.

  • Mavis Finnamore

    I used to think of my country and its government with pride. Now I am incensed at their treatment of scientists, that I paid for with my taxes, and enraged that they think they can get away with it. And yes it has spurred me to look for ways to get rid of this very anti democratic government.

  • binker

    This government get more and more out of step with the real world and its needs and behaviour. I would have never believed that a government of a democracy could be so afraid of its citizens. did no one ever hear “the truth has made you free”? this is not my Canada.

  • Fran Manary

    Canada’s Environmental Agency’s budget has been reduced by more than 40% for 2012 -2013 after a 7% cut the previous year.

    How can the government propose better environmental assessments, as last years throne speech promised, while it is reducing its staff by one third?

    With the environmental laws buried in the omnibus bill C-38 it inhibits critical examination.

    Reputable scientists are forbidden to discuss their findings.

    Obfuscation is definitely at play here!

  • Gary Wells

    I guess this repression is being done on the premise that “Ignorance is bliss”. I have also noticed a certain lack of rigor on the part of the CBC when it reports on the doings of the “H

  • Gary Wells

    “Harper Government.” I think they’re more than a little nervous.

  • Patrick

    As an ordinary citizen,I find this mode of Government frightening.I never thought the words “Federal Budget” would invoke in me a fear of what’s coming next as far as environmental protection is concerned.There are reports of thousands of dead pigs floating in the river that supplies the drinking water for Shang-Hai in China.The Chineses government says the water is safe to drink.Is Harper taking environment lessons from his most favoured potential Oil customer?Get off your knees Mr.Prime Minister.Canada is not a multi-national corporation ripe for the raping of it’s natural resources!

  • Linda

    The only way to stop Harper is to insist on cooperation between the other parties. Harper has rigged the system in the Conservative’s favour. Yes, thank you Elizabeth for your tenacity and persistence!!

  • Steve D

    Is there any way to make this more publicly digestible ( sound byty!). It seems the only thing that gets heard is the Harper dictatorships words that “this is untrue.”


  • Martin

    Thank you for this valuable information. Mr Harper must think Orwell’s 1984 is a blueprint for the ideal society. I don’t agree.

  • http://www.facebook.com/ausadian.sol Ausadian Sol

    If we had any doubt that Harper was a fascist…here’s the proof!

  • http://twitter.com/chrisw_ottawa Christopher Wilson

    Dear Elizabeth, You might want to consider what happens when followers no longer want to follow. This appears to be increasingly the case among public servants who feel torn between their obligation of loyalty to the government and their loyalty to the public interest. Government scientists have already protested this muzzling (who has ever heard of government scientists protesting anything before??). What happens when our leaders no longer have the trust of the public service? Do we go back to politically appointed public servants instead of merit based, non-partisan, professional public service? Do we expect that the public service can determine the public interest and operate as a fourth pillar of government? The leadership model seems to be unraveling?

  • Clint LaForge

    Every time I read or listen to the news recently, I am hearing about another story how this federal government is gutting the oversight of its’ policies concerning environmental issues. Just this morning on CBC, Annamaria Tremonti was interviewing the watchdog guy who, under the office of Auditor General, was explaining how the Harper gov’t is removing funding and dismantling the monitoring of water quality in Ontario lakes, which has been ongoing for many years, and has been a boon to governments worldwide. Rather than even privatizing this source of crucial information, the government is dismantling buildings where the work is being done, in an obvious effort to eliminate any conclusive environmental numbers which would not be in the interest of government’s agenda of fast tracking resource extraction and industry.

    Many areas of science are being muzzled and closed. The government is also discrediting Parks Canada aka the Sable Island “takeover” as a Harper government initiative and photo-op to enhance their own image, at the expense of the hard working people at Parks Canada. Cheap.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=558863051 Wendy Hoy

    I do think that we must fight to preserve freedom of speech for all peoples by continually supporting our press corps, and not allowing corporations like Bell media to take over our mass media and muzzle our journalists.
    Scientists must be free to speak with a free media and their messages come to Canadians published unedited and widely distributed. This is the basis of a democracy, the freedom of speech. That scientists should be targetted is a clear message that health risks are imminent, and the ones who make the money by hiding that fact are steering our government.

  • http://www.facebook.com/andrewcharlesjackson Andrew Charles Jackson

    Harper wants us all silenced and brainwashed into believing that the tarsands and natural gas are more important to Canada than climate change is to the planet. History will not be on his side irrespective of key pipeline decisions. He will forever be known in the annals of history as the world’s worst climate criminal.

  • Cory C.

    Horrifying. Elizabeth, why are we not seeing this story and others in mainstream media at all? Are CBC, CTV, Global all truly muzzled by govt as well? This is the kind of information that could swing support of the masses away from the Harper led govt if the general public were hearing it. Must be some avenue to get exposure…
    Please keep up your efforts for us!

    If I might make a small suggestion…when you write these articles I think it would be helpful to write a succinct abstract at the top to allow people to quickly read the main points …not everyone may have time to read the full version and may be prone in their busy lives to just skip completely if the articles appear long. Just a thought…

  • valerie kennedy

    This material needs to go out to every institute of higher learning, and to every teachers association. Hard to believe, but it does follow what has been happening over the time since this government got a ‘majority’.

  • Eric Denison

    We are dealing with a number of Reform/Conservative MPs who do not understand the issue of climate change and are fearful in their ignorance. They would appear to feel that scientists producing work that they do not understand are somehow being subversive. This anti-democratic, anti-science attitude is an embarrassment internationally and is jepordizing research at home which is integral to moving our country forward in this 21st century.

  • B747433

    PRC = Publication Review Committee
    PRC = Peoples Republic of China
    … interesting confluence of acronyms and methods

  • caged in a “democracy”

    Nothing could be sadder than this truth: after all the stonewalling, bull-headed decision-making by a small cadre of inner circle shadow figures, and their denial of every awful truth revealed, I am surprised at absolutely nothing this government tries any longer. Sigh.

  • Let freedom reign

    All government censoring must stop. It’s like telling the electorate, we are not capable of making our own choices , so big government has to do it for us, yah right.

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