Stephen Harper kept a lot of things under wraps. Now what he covered up is being uncovered. This week we learned that the Communications Security Establishment has been delving into the private lives of Canadians -- which is specifically forbidden by law. Michael Harris writes:
The real bottom line? It’s not a failure to communicate. It is a grotesque example of overreach by people permitted to operate in almost total secrecy. CSE is only supposed to monitor foreign communications for information of intelligence interest to the federal government. So under what authority had it been collecting the communications of Canadians to the tune of millions of downloads a day? We can thank Edward Snowden for even being able to ask that question.
So Canada’s privacy laws were being egregiously broken, Stephen Harper knew it — and yet never released the report documenting the illegality.
Cindy Blackstock knows what it's like to have the spooks looking over her shoulder:
No story exemplifies that better than that of Cindy Blackstock, the Canadian-born Gitxan and First Nations child welfare advocate. Despite warrantless government surveillance involving 189 federal officials “stalking” her, and more than $5 million in federal legal fees spent to derail the social worker’s case in front of the Human Rights Tribunal, this amazing citizen persevered.
This week the Human Rights Tribunal ruled the First Nations child welfare system was discriminatory:
The Conservatives tried to turn her activism into a crime, while talking about an historic reconciliation with native peoples out of the other side of their mouths. The only thing ‘historic’ was the size of the lie.
Mr. Harper told us that the long form census invaded our privacy. He was devious and dishonest. You can bet that there will be more examples to follow.