Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Who'da thought this could get so ugly

Apparently not the Harper reformers. Given that it's tough to get over one-half the eligible voters out for an election because they're just plain not interested or engaged enough, relegating something like a census form to the round file on the deck probably looked like nothing more than weekly desk clearing.

The head of Statistics Canada says he's "reflecting" on his future at the agency, the latest twist in the crisis over the government's decision to scrub the mandatory long-form census.

Once again, it makes one wonder what type of "economist" Harper is supposed to be. Economists live and die by statistics. It's the bread of the bread & butter combo. Without accurate statistics economists are hard-pressed to produce reliable forecasts of anything and most economists I've met want more statistics - not less.

The truth is, the Harper decision to scrap the compulsory long form is more than telling as to how he intends to govern in the future. The Conservatives may not want to know what the make up of social, ethnic and economic groups are in this country, but they're quite happy to pry deeply and grossly abuse their secret authority to track your financial behaviour. Go read what Dan Gardner has to say about it. Then take a flip over to Scott's for more.

It's becoming more and more obvious that this whole thing is ideologically driven with a view to scrapping anything they don't like and to drive minority groups as far out to the margins as they can. In Harper's democracy, if you are not squarely in his camp, you are an enemy and every effort will be made to neutralize you.

Finally, click on over to Cathie's where she picked up a fantastic summation offered by a commenter at Warren Kinsella's site.

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