Remember when Stephen Harper was trying to mitigate what everyone was starting worry about during the election campaign? Remember when he suggested that a Conservative government would be kept in check by a Liberal civil service, Liberal courts and a Liberal senate?
Well, check this out.
Stockwell Day, The Minister of Public Safety in Harper's government, has brought in Scott Newark as his senior policy advisor. From the Public Eye Online, a couple of enlightening quotes from Newark:
"Anything effective in law enforcement will inevitably be forbidden under the charter" of Rights and Freedoms.and
"As we always say, the charter helps only murderers, pedophiles and judges."
"What we have now in Canada is a supposedly enlightened despotism - rule by people who think they know so much better than everybody else" - referring to the country's judges.What Newark fails to acknowledge is that the Charter of Rights and Freedoms protects a thousand times more innocent people than it does anybody else, against illegal search and seizure, restricted mobility and discriminatory application of the law. Newark finds having to actually prove a case against an alleged offender inconvenient. He also fails to acknowledge that law enforcement DOES have extraordinary powers and provided peace officers exercise those powers with due restraint, nobody has any problem with that. His view of judges is interesting if not very revealing. Judges don't make law - they apply it. He views a judge's decision as "rule", when in fact dominion originates with Parliament.
Never mind the possibility of Harper using the Notwithstanding Clause, if Newark had his way there would be no Charter and no rights. Just police and a population required to obey every arbitrary decision made by those police.
With Newark in position we can expect all forms of activity, currently prohibited under the Charter, to suddenly start appearing. If you think the Bush domestic wiretapping issue is bad, wait until this guy is given a free reign.
And remember, this is a dangerous man advising a complete idiot. You don't have to look too far south to see what that's led to.
(Hat tip to Dana)
(For our American readers: The Ministry of Public Safety is very similar in structure and form to the US Dept. of Homeland Security.)