Stephen Rees's blog

Thoughts about the relationships between transport and the urban area it serves

Canadian scientists blast ‘suppression of research’ by Tories

with one comment

Margaret Munro, Canwest News Service

This looks like a good follow on to the recent piece about how a provincial MLA treats government scientists.

VANCOUVER – Prominent Canadian scientists are calling on the country’s political leaders to end what they describe as the “politicization” and “mistreatment” of science.

A letter, released Thursday and signed by 85 researchers, points to “blatant” examples where the Harper government has undermined, suppressed and distorted science for political reasons. The list includes the “muzzling” of Environment Canada scientists, the firing of the head of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission and misrepresentation of studies done on Insite, a Vancouver-based facility that allows drug users to inject heroin and cocaine under medical supervision.

“While science is not the only factor to be considered in political decision-making, ignoring and subverting science and scientific processes is unacceptable,” the scientists write.

Politicians who make decisions by falsifying or denying scientific evidence do not deserve to be re-elected. What Mr Harper and his Tories have been doing is taking us down the wrong path, in order to staisfy his clientele. He is not serving the best interests of the electorate or the country as a whole. He is pandering to the special interests who he relies on for support. Many more Canadians voted aginst him than for him. Yet he does nothing to earn their trust or confidence. On the contrary, if he is re-elected with (God help us) a majority, then we know he will continue to ensure that this small minority will placated. The oil companies will get tax breaks – despite their massive profits. The destruction of our enviroment will continue apace. And more people will die on the streets of the Downtown Eastside as victims of the idealogical “war on drugs” which is short on both compassion and effectiveness.

We simply cannot afford more of Mr Harper, any more than we can afford another term for the Republicans in the White House.

Written by Stephen Rees

October 9, 2008 at 10:12 pm

Posted in politics

One Response

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  1. All very good reasons to try to get Harper out of power. How? There’s only one way in this election which happens to have another fractured centre-left: by voting strategically, despite what Grant the Ranter says.

    If anyone thinks Layton is full of principle and free of partisanship, then they haven’t been paying attention to his actions over the last two elections. Many blame him for dividing the majority, thus clearing the way for Harper in the last one.

    It’s sad, because the NDP otherwise have a pretty good platform (with some admitted discomfort with their cap & trade policy) and could in a rare spirit of co-operation influence the next government greatly, or even occupy several cabinet seats in a coalition government. THAT would be acting on principle for the good of the country.

    For those who cannot get over their attitude that Dion is The Second Most Evil Person, then you may as well vote Conservative, because that’s what you’ll get in this one. It’s plain math, which is blind to principle.

    And it’s also ignorant of the fact the NDP / CCF has never in its 80+ year federal history had sufficient backing to form a federal government, and never will, given the split in the electorate. But forming a powerful alliance with Liberals HAS resulted in great things like making public healthcare possible. Why can’t it work to affect legislation on the most important issue in history, climate change?

    I make the above recommendation not for convenience, but from reading the policy platforms of the three centre or left partys and by listening to their comments. If a party wants me to vote for them soley on principles, then they have to present them first, and have evidence they’ve lived up to them. I’m still waiting.

    Prepare thyself for a Grant Rant. [Poor boy. His Caps Lock and Exclamation keys must be worn to the nub by now.]


    October 10, 2008 at 2:29 pm

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