Yesterday, the federal election was just five months away, to the day. Surprise, surprise! Faux and mini scandals implicating the Conservative Government in Ottawa are starting to become a daily mainstream media occurrence.
No surprise there. As I wrote recently in another post, the Public Service Alliance of Canada, (PSAC), the union that serves many federal bureaucrats, said it was going to spend $5 million dollars to campaign against their Conservative employer.
Well, meet the federal scientists in the photo above left, along with PSAC and other public sector unions, in their attempt at making the Conservatives seem like controllers.
How? By “muzzling” the federal scientists from being able to say whatever they like, whenever they like!
The reality is that apart from working in a university setting where you have autonomy, no scientist speaks out without approval from his or her employer or major funder.
In fact, even if in a university setting, if your research is in some way related to your employer or your funder, you wouldn’t report the findings and/or conclusions without first getting permission to do so. As the saying goes, been there and done that. Unless, of course, you are willing to risk either your tenure or being approved for more funding.
Yet, as the column on the CBC’s website says: “Public-sector unions have organized rallies in a number of locations across the Ottawa area on Tuesday to protest the alleged muzzling of public scientists.”
Continuing on that topic, there is this piece in the Ottawa Citizen that blames the low turnout of federal scientists at the “muzzling” protests on a “climate of fear.”
Talk about desperation. Read the whole Citizen article and it will become very clear who the controllers really are.
A faux scandal if I ever heard one.
Which brings us to today’s “mini” scandal courtesy of Josh Wingrove of Bloomberg News. Mary Dawson, the Ethics Commissioner, is talking about a $594.00 (Cdn) expense for tickets to attend three gala dinners as a horror. She says: “I’m rather delighted with the horror with which the Bonner Report has been met, because at least people have noticed.”
Horror? Pardon me? Over $594.00? Compared to what the media is not reporting on Ontario Liberal scandals involving billions of dollars?
An aide (Michael Bonner) to then Environment Minister Jason Kenney, apparently, used the tickets to attend the galas, saying it was part of his job. Yet, even though neither the Aerospace Industry Association, Vale Canada Limited or the Forest Products Association of Canada (who donated the tickets) were ever found at fault, Bonner had to pay for the tickets himself and then leave Kenney’s office in October (2014). Which means, this “scandal” is old news.
Interestingly, the same Bloomberg column mentions that the complainant is able to remain anonymous because he or she claims to be a whistleblower. I mean, isn’t it relevant that Bonner’s former fiancée has ties to the Liberal Party of Canada and is suspected of being that complainant?
Apparently not. As Wingrove writes: “She [Dawson] didn’t reveal the complainant’s name partly because a complaint was also made to another watchdog who doesn’t reveal complainants. While she acknowledged ‘personal overlays’ in this case, Dawson said motive or background is irrelevant.”
Unfortunately, given that both the liberal media and both public and private sector unions (including Unifor) are starting to spend huge amounts of money trying desperately to undermine Canadian democracy and the Conservative Record of achievement, Canadians can expect more of these faux and mini anti-Conservative scandals leading up the vote on October 19th, 2015.
My advice? As I have said before, voters should ignore them. However, the CPC and the Conservative Government should also refute each and every exaggeration in a loud and clear voice!