Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Law, Terrorism, Civil Liberties and Stephen Harper

Unless you've been living under a rock recently, you'll know that MPs voted to allow two unused clauses of Canada's post-9/11 "anti-terrorism" laws to lapse.

Now, we have to start asking the question: Why does Stephen Harper insist that Canadians must "give up" civil liberties such as due process when detained?

"The Liberals chose internal caucus politics over the national security of Canadians," he said Tuesday.

No, actually I'd say Dion and the rest of the opposition MPs made a very principled stand in favour of Canadian civil rights and liberties.

Law enforcement and intelligence in Canada have had 5 full years to demonstrate that such laws are useful tools. They haven't used them, and arguably, do not need them at this time. I don't like the idea of leaving a little turd lying around in law that can be used to lock someone away arbitrarily because the government doesn't like who they're talking to.

Harper is trying to play this as a political smear - something he started last week when he slimed MP Bains in the House of Commons, and had Minister Nitwit post this bit of partisan crap on the "Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness" department website.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It seems like Harper is trying to use Bush's "9/11-fear-terror" card in advance of the election. I don't think it will have the same effect that it did in the US. In fact, it didn't even have much effect in the last US elections.

This "we must be terrified of terrorism" schtick is so stale.

The last major act of terrorism in Canada was over 20 years ago, and 9/11, as shocking as it was, wasn't targeted at Canada or Canadians. We just aren't stewing in any climate of fear and paranoia like the Americans were several years ago.

It's bad enough that Harper is trying to use techniques from the Bush/Rove playbook on fearmongering, but it is even more pathetic that he is trying to use tactics that are several years past their "best before" date. Maybe next he'll try to rouse us all about Japanese fifth columnists on the west coast.