Friday, March 06, 2015

Fighting Fear With Even More Fear

Fear is a weapon.  It's a weapon of choice of modern terrorists.  Not for nothing are they named "terrorists."  They seek to use fear to manipulate a result.  It's a despicable, heinous thing to do - deserving of nothing but our contempt.

Fear is also a weapon of choice of the Harper government.  They too regularly inflict fear on the Canadian people to manipulate a result they could not hope to achieve by legitimate, democratic means.  It's a despicable, heinous thing to do and those who attack the Canadian people with fear and those who support their efforts are deserving of nothing but our contempt.

TorStar columnist, Ed Keenan, tears a strip off the Harper government for fearmongering to sell Bill C-51:

“Jihadi terrorists have declared war on Canada,” a Conservative party fundraising email sent out this week reads. “They hate us for our values. They hate us because we love freedom and tolerance.”

On occasion, the Conservative government headed by Prime Minister Stephen Harper has shown an inclination to take on the role of the press — by producing and distributing its own approved news items to print and broadcast media through the PR agency News Canada Ltd., for example. It now appears it has decided to do the work of satirists, too. How else to explain the transparent layers of irony running through the Conservatives’ public communications, the ham-fisted illustrations of doublespeak that so effectively lay bare the cynical, hollow heart and totalitarian inclinations of their new legislation?

...“They hate us because we love freedom and tolerance.”

See, the devastating self-skewering element of this line is that it is nominally intended to serve as the justification for a proposed law, Bill C-51, that will restrict freedom. And it is offered at a time when members of the government are using the bill as a means ofwhipping up intolerance against Muslims to score cheap political points. Here we have a piece of legislation that would, among other things, curtail freedom of speech fairly broadly on matters related to terrorism and give an espionage agency domestic policing powers that allow it, in secret, to be specifically exempted from honouring the Charter of Rights.

An extra-constitutional secret police and surveillance agency, and criminal penalties for expressions of dissent. If “we love freedom and tolerance” isn’t the perfect punchline to explain that, what is?

Apologists for Justin Trudeau (who must, by now, be nearing exhaustion) contend the Liberals are supporting C-51 lest Harper turn it into an excuse to call a snap election.  Really? And they want us to believe Team Trudeau is fit to govern our country?  Cue the ghost of Michael Ignatieff.  

No, sorry JT, you don't get a pass for backing up Harper on this one.  The assault on our democratic freedoms, especially our right to dissent, embodied in C-51, is your assault as much as Harpers on this one.

Meanwhile, in this morning's Times Colonist, Star Phoenix columnist Paul Hanley slams Canada's Petro-Police, the RCMP:

The RCMP’s recently disclosed Critical Infrastructure Intelligence Assessment of Criminal Threats to the Canadian Petroleum Industry might be dismissed as a joke if its implications weren’t so disturbing.

Given the sweeping nature of proposed anti-terrorism legislation, what does this assessment reveal of attitudes about the environmental movement inside government?

The RCMP assessment lists several incidents of criminal activity directed at the petroleum industry. Fair enough. We all likely agree those involved in actual crimes, such as bombings and threats of violence, should be prosecuted.

But the police force then launches into a pro-petroleum polemic that tars the “broadly based anti-petroleum opposition” — hundreds of thousands, if not millions of Canadians — with the same brush as it does a handful of violent criminals.

The RCMP’s assumption that it’s somehow “anti-Canadian” to oppose the expansion of fossil-fuel infrastructure is simply wrong. It is also wrong that Canada’s police force should indulge in an ideologically based critique of a legitimate social movement. Its job is to enforce laws, not take ideological positions.

Beyond that, the report is rubbish. Its assessment of risk is not based on an investigation of actual threats but on comments from dubious media and industry sources. If this is what passes as “intelligence,” it makes one question the RCMP’s capacity to judge any threat.

The RCMP makes much of a report from an academic source about the nefarious use of social media by environmental groups to “dominate” the Internet and “recruit impressionable students” to “help save the planet.” How shocking!

How stupid can this thing get? Well, the RCMP goes on to cite a paper from a university student who made the startling discovery that Twitter is being used to mobilize people. That finding leads to this revelation: “Environmentalists are no longer confined to simply waving banners and yelling through megaphones: They have gone online.”

We actually pay people to churn out this nonsense?

It's pretty obvious that Paulson's Petro-Cops are desperate for some pretext, seemingly anything no matter how contrived, to support their sick ideological bent against Canadians concerned about the devastation of our and the world's environment.  They've taken sides and it has precious little or nothing to do with law and order.

The Royal Conservative Mounted Petro-Police.  Isn't it time to just get rid of them?


the salamander said...

.. selling us on fear .. One is left wondering if his fearful shameful time in the closet has led Harper to lash out and try to share his pain & shame.. via fear. And That its really a defensive campaign on his part to pretend he is strong and fearless.. and we should be the weak and fearful. Truly an attempt at some sort of reverse mormon suflex backflip? Reminds me of Jason Kenney lecturing us regarding families.. as if living with his mommy gives him insight on parenting.

It really is time to campaign.. as ordinary folk or indy bloggers etc.. not on what Canadians 'want' .. from their politicians.. but on what they do not want or accept. Maybe that's the essence of attack ads, but for sure Canadians do not want no coast guard. Canadians do not want corrupt or secretive politicians. Nor do we want wolves poisoned... the list becomes almost endless. We do not want coverups. Or bribery. Elction Fraud or pollution of our waters. Don't accept only exporting raw logs to China. We don't want to be spied on and lied to. We don't trust political polls. Or attacks upon our courts by Peter MacKay. Spending tax payer money on partisan ads or non existant programs really pisses us off. Cheating our Military vets too.

Maybe if we shouted this kind of stuff a bit louder and longer.. more Canadians would twig to the fact that we are axtually describing our current public servants who like to call themselves The Harper Government.. and that what they have been doing with our trust, our money is fraudulent, crazy, partisan, toxic.. and we will not abide...

The Mound of Sound said...

You'll like this, Sal. I've noticed ads recently from Advertising Standards Canada. They claim to be keeping advertisers honest and, on their web page, invite complaints.

I left a message asking if they might look into the Harper government's taxpayer-funded ads about non-existent employment programmes. I'm still waiting for a reply.

Anonymous said...

"Why of course the people don't want war. Why should some poor slob ona farm want to risk his life in a war when the best he can get out of it is to come back to his farm in one piece?Naturally the common people
don't want war neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to
drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist
dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country."
by: Hermann Goering