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May 02, 2005

Publication ban

Austin Bay has some stupid things to say about Canada by way of the Gomery Commission. Here is one example.

If you don't know about Canada's crooked politicians, you're not alone. Democracy and free speech are breaking out in Beirut, but they're both taking a beating in Ontario. The Canadian government has a press clamp on an investigation into the ruling Liberal Party's "Adscam" kickback scheme. A "judicial publication ban" is the term. It may soon rank with the Watergate rhetoric like "modified limited hang-out."

It is called a judicial publication ban because it is a judicial publication ban. Despite the hyperventilating rhetoric that has been typical of the subject, it is not a "press clamp" imposed by the government. Many people believe this ban is inadvisable or that such bans are inadvisable per se. Fine. Then we should change the law. Such opinions do not change the fact that the ban was imposed in order to defend the rights of a number of people to a fair trial, a right of no consequence to the purposes of Austin Bay's rhetoric. If those trials are thrown out on the grounds their defendants cannot not now be tried fairly I imagine Austin Bay and his fellow travellers will see that as another example of the long reach of the Liberal party.

While the rights of those defendants have been trampled I have yet to see anyone in Canada charged with violations of the court order despite the fact many folks appear to have broken the law in their rush to point fingers at the Liberal government. If that is free speech taking a beating in Ontario (Bay does not seem to have noticed the proceedings are also taking place in Quebec) then I am quite sanguine at the prospect.

Posted by Ghost of a flea at May 2, 2005 08:01 AM

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