...having debated them on Usenet for years in the past, it is nice to see some smarmy Liberals brought down. Down!
On with the story,
"A blogger's revelations could bring down Canada's governmentFOR the past week, an unassuming call-centre manager in Minnesota has become a key player in Canadian politics, whipping up a storm that could end in a snap general election. On an internet blog-site dubbed "Captain's Quarters
," Ed Morrissey has been posting the explosive details of supposedly secret testimony to a judicial commission in Montreal that is investigating a huge political corruption scandal centred on the ruling Liberal Party.Most of the government-appointed commission's hearings have taken place in public. But Judge John Gomery, its chairman, imposed a publication ban on the testimony of Jean Brault, former head of Groupaction, an advertising agency, as he is to stand trial on fraud charges in June.Sitting on the American side of the Canadian border and thus able to ignore the ban, Captain Ed, as he is known to his friends, has blithely been publishing all the juicy details that the Canadian press has been unable to touch. After the story of his blogging exploits broke in Canada on Monday, the normal traffic on his website increased tenfold as delighted Canadians rushed to log on.
Denouncing the revelations as "very serious", Peter MacKay, deputy leader of the main opposition Conservative Party, has hinted at the possibility of a vote of no confidence leading to the fall of Paul Martin's minority Liberal government and a snap general election—less than a year after the last one.But how accurate are Captain Ed's blog-site accounts? His informant, whom he describes as "a friend...in a position to have the information", is thought likely to be a Conservative political operator eager to besmirch Mr Martin and his government with biased reports of the hearings. However, Captain Ed is far from the only source reporting on the closed-door proceedings; he is simply the only one publishing the details. Observers from the Bloc Québécois, New Democrats and Conservatives, as well as journalists covering the inquiry, can also hear what is being said and pass word around. Almost every Canadian now seems to know at least the gist of Mr Brault's testimony. [There are five hundred news stories in the Canadian press about a network of corruption dealing in millions of dollars, with more being written.]
Following the separatists' failure to remove Quebec from Canada in a 1995 referendum, the then Liberal prime minister, Jean Chrétien, set up a government "sponsorship programme" to raise the federal profile and promote national unity in Quebec. Five advertising firms, including Groupaction, with links to the Liberals were allegedly guaranteed a monopoly on government-sponsorship advertising at sporting and cultural events in the province and, as a result, are said to have made huge fortunes from contracts worth around C$250m ($200m).Having denied that he had any part in the award of the contracts, Mr Chrétien is now seeking legal ways to close down the inquiry. This could deal a final blow to Mr Martin, his successor and long-time rival, allowing the Conservatives to claim that his Liberal Party is seeking to conceal all manner of misdeeds. A beleaguered Mr Martin has spent many ugly hours in parliament vowing that he wants all the facts to emerge and any wrongdoers punished....."
(The EconomistApril 9, 2005 U.S. EditionSection: The Americas
HEADLINE: Shivering Mr Martin's timbers; Canada's corruption scandal
HIGHLIGHT: A blogger's revelations could bring down Canada's government)
Many commentators have begun noting that the Liberal Party seemed to have become so arrogant that they believed they could do anything.
One of the things I debated against liberal Canadians and on the side of the conservatives a while back was the Canadian "Ministry of Culture"* blocking Fox News from being received in Canada. Yet they have various things on their Canadian public service type television, including Al-Jahzeera, a broadcast with Islamist tendencies. Note the themes of this story of corruption. It's partly about control of the media. Canadians actually do not have free speech in the same way that Americans do, apparently thanks to some stronger proto-fascist tendencies in modern "liberalism" in the region.
*If that name sounds rather proto-fascist, it probably is, as is corruption in the media.