Friday, January 15, 2010

When Canada Was a Democracy we Were Able to Ask Questions

What happened to us? I mean seriously, what happened to us?

I came of age in the 1960's and we questioned everything. This questioning gave rise to the civil rights movement and a new approach to looking at the world.

But we've now gone back to the 1950's, where we believe everything our government tells us, even when much of it is absolutely ridiculous; and allow them to make decisions for us, simply because we're obviously too lazy to make them for ourselves.

Even the seemingly progressive thinking George Stroumboulopoulos, is framing his questions to George Galloway in the video above, with the usual rhetoric. In my day Stroumboulopoulos would have been considered a stooge, yet he's now one of the more enlightened in the media.

Now don't get me wrong. I like George. He's certainly a breath of fresh air compared to people like Rex Murphy, but he's got to do better than this.

When Jason Kenney banned George Galloway from visiting Canada, he claimed it was because he sent aid to Palestine, and they are in his estimation terrorists. Yet Kenney spoke at a rally of the Mujahedeen Khalq. When it was pointed out to him that they were on Canada's Terrorist list, he shrugged it off, claiming not to know.

I think he banned Galloway because he spoke out against the war and our involvement in it. This is a government that does not allow dissent. You're with them or against them. If you question the war, you're a 'Taliban dupe'. If you question Israeli aggression, you're anti-Semitic.

Journalist and former CBC personality Lesley Hughes learned this the hard way.

In April 2002, after hearing of the deaths of 4 Canadian soldiers, as a result of so-called 'friendly fire', she sat at her computer and wrote a column encouraging Canadians to seek the truth about our involvement in Afghanistan.

At the time, her column reflected the feelings of many Canadians. We were angry and grief stricken and started looking for answers. Yet six years after this piece was written, born again Reformer Peter Kent, pounced on it; trying to paint Hughes as not only anti-Semitic, but a nut for listening to experts, who had many questions about this so-called 'war on terror'.

Because of Kent's actions and his close ties to the entertainment industry, formally known as the Canadian media, (He was an executive at CanWest Global) the press went nuts. Hughes had been running as a Liberal in the 2008 election, but because of Kent's insanity, she not only was removed from the race, but lost her career in the process.

And all because she wanted us to seek the truth. Oh, the horror!

The irony of course is that, Kent's brother, Arthur, is very outspoken on Afghanistan. In fact, he repeatedly warned this government that they were propping up the corrupt Karzai regime, when it had no legitimacy in that country. He also warned our ambassador about the drug trade, and Karzai's involvement in it; and helped with a video 'Freedom From War'. Is he a 'Taliban dupe'? Hardly.

We are pouring billions and billions of dollars into this war. Money that we don't have, but have to borrow. And we are losing too many of our soldiers. When are we going to start asking questions?

We have got to start to RETHINK AFGHANISTAN!


  1. Kenny didn't ban Galloway.

  2. But Kenney could have allowed him in. Instead he huffed and puffed about Galloway supporting terrorists. That's why Kenney is now being sued.

    When does anyone get to say who we listen to? George Galloway is not a threat and if anything he just drew more people to him.

    Everyone knows that Jason Kenney was behind this.

  3. More voices on Kenney, Galloway

    Jason Kenney bans British MP George Galloway from Canada

    British MP George Galloway is suing Jason Kenney

    British MP George Galloway starts libel suit against Jason Kenney

    'Infandous*' George Galloway banned from Canada on grounds of national security

    Read more:

  4. Thanks for posting my comment. Let's see if you're really interested in the truth. Here's another voice....

    You say, "But Kenney could have allowed him in. Instead he huffed and puffed about Galloway supporting terrorists. That's why Kenney is now being sued."

    So you're OK with elected politicians sidestepping Canadian law and over ruling civil servants? Here's what really happened.
    Hamas is identified as a terrorists organization and included on a list of groups banned from entering our country. This ban extends to those who support them. This was all implemented long before Harper and Kenney arrived on the scene. Look it up.
    Galloway's people asked officials in the Canadian Consulate in London if they thought there would be a problem with Galloway entering Canada for his speaking tour. Those officials did their research and came back saying that according to established Canadian law, yes there would likely be a problem because of our ban on groups identified as terrorists and anyone who supports them. Galloway openly and very vocally supports Hamas. But he was told that this was a preliminary reponse and Galloway was invited to escalate the request or even just show up at the border and see how the immigration officer in the booth dealt with him. Galloway did neither. Nor did he or has he ever before ask any other country for pre-clearance. I can't wait to hear his answer about why he chose to ask Canada and no other country on this speaking tour for pre-clearance.
    So then he went nuts about it. Fans in Canada petitioned Kenney and then a judge to make an exception to the terrorist immigration rules and neither Kenney nor the judge saw any good reason to do that. Galloway got huge press out of it and packed houses at all of his speaking engagements in the US. Some of those events were broadcast and recorded so the whole world, including Canadians who wanted to could hear Mr. Galloway.

    "When does anyone get to say who we listen to?"

    No one does and no one did. Canadian law was enforced. That's all. There was no freedom of speach issue.

    "George Galloway is not a threat and if anything he just drew more people to him."

    Bingo! Mission accomplished. No one ever accused Galloway of being dumb.

  5. I publish all comments unless they contain profanity, because I love a good debate. You've done your homework.

    Hamas was on our terrorist list when Galloway was allowed into the country to be on George Stroumboulopoulos's show.

    When Jason Kenney spoke at a rally of the Mujahedeen Khalq they were on our terrorist list.

    So his problem is not who is on a list but who his on his list.

    My point is that Canadians are pretty smart people. We don't need to be treated like children. George Galloway is an elected member of the British Parlament. Just because his views are controversial is no reason to keep him out of the country.

    He makes some valid points about this so-called "war on terror". In 2005 Stephen Harper suggested that when a government tries to squash dissent it has lost it's moral authority to govern.

    I think he's right.

  6. I'm completely supportive of free speech. Even the wacko's at Fox News get to voice their opinions.
    Yes Galloway has come to this country before without a problem. Yes Hamas was on the terrorist list then as well. They’ve been on the list for a long time. Long before the current government came into power. Kenny didn’t stop him from coming into Canada either. He (and a judge who was also asked to rule on the issue) just didn’t see any good reason to make an exception for him by putting aside the rules for him. A subtle distinction but a very important one. Galloway asked for an opinion about getting in before he came, a Canadian official told him what our laws say so he didn’t come. That’s essentially what happened. But what if that official had said, "no George, come on over, there's no reason in the world that you'd have any trouble entering the country"? What would have happened if he had received a thumbs up and then arrived only to be turned away or worse? Sure, Kenney could have green lighted his entry but why should he? We consider Hamas and their supporters to be persona non-gratia here. What makes Galloway special? Who else would you think should be allowed special dispensation to enter the country? And again, why did Galloway take that course of action to ask first? He never has before or since. He hasn't asked anywhere else. The US is on a much higher freakout level than Canada about terrorism and he didn't ask them. He just showed up and wasn't stopped. And if he's such a highly principled and fearless advocate for human rights, why didn't he come anyway and take his chances? Wouldn’t George Galloway being incarcerated in a Canadian immigration holding cell for a few hours and then deported been a huge publicity coup for Galloway?
    Even Galloway’s old enemy Christopher Hitchens supported Galloway at first on freedom of speech grounds. But then when he found out the truth, Hitchens backed off and reversed his call.
    People are missing the point on this situation. This whole controversy isn't a freedom of speech issue. Galloway's making it look that way but it isn't. I believe the whole situation is one big publicity stunt. In this electronic age, no country except the most totalitarian ones like China can restrict free speech. Is the Canadian government or Jason Kenney stopping us from discussing this issue? No. Did they stop Galloway from broadcasting his speaking events to every corner of Canada? No. Everyone with a computer, from Tuktoyaktuk to Kingsville could have watched and listened. Like you say, he was handed a tremendous gift in the amount of free publicity over this situation. One purely of his own creation. I bet a lot more people heard him speak because of it. What would have been maybe a few hundred in a hall in Toronto became thousands via the internet. I think many people are being incredibly naive about this. Especially the ones who are being sucked into donating for his defense fund for his upcoming court date. I'll give you odds that he never proves that he was treated unfairly in a court of law. His case is full of holes. If he's really smart, he'll find a way to make this court date go away. Few people are even aware of it anyway and they’re all rabid fans that will find a way to spin a decision not to pursue the case to their agenda.

    So if you know the facts you know that no one banned Galloway from entering Canada. Through his associations he banned himself. Egypt on the other hand has banned him for life. Officially. Where's the moral outrage about that? An Arab country shows him the door but his supporters and the left wing in Canada are silent?! And what about the Egyptian soldier who was killed during the skirmish when Galloway's caravan tried to enter Gaza through Egypt? Cue the crickets.
    Anyway, I’m just repeating myself at this point. I don’t know that there’s much more to say about it. Thanks for the use of the soapbox.