Dr. Dawg

The Pantsafire Chronicles: Peter Kent

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Time to welcome our Environment Minister to our flaming breeches pantheon. “We are not muzzling scientists,” quotha.

Untrue, and he knew it:

Kent’s office stopped David Tarasick, an Environment Canada researcher, from talking to journalists about a report on last year’s unprecedented Arctic ozone hole, show documents obtained by Postmedia News under the Access to Information Act.

The documents also say Kent’s office and the Privy Council Office, which reports to the prime minister, decide when and if Environment Canada scientists are allowed to brief the media about anything from wildlife to water quality.

Kent is, of course, only following in his predecessor’s footsteps, and dutifully listening to His Master’s Voice. From the beginning of his reign, Harper has been slapping gags on scientists faster than a Dom in a playspace. Even a novelist was forbidden by then-Environment Minister Rona Ambrose to talk about his new book at a National Press Club luncheon. Scientist Scott Dallimore was not permitted to discuss his findings about a 13,000-year-old flood—which would have pleased Minister of Science and Technology Gary Goodyear, a creationist who thinks the earth is only 6,000 years old anyway.

Until Kent stumbled onto the scene, the Harper regime had no difficulty letting its muzzling efforts be known—indeed, publicity of that nature puts a damper on any other scientists who might be tempted to talk to reporters about the curvature of the earth, or the heliocentric model.

Kent apparently missed the memo, however, and blatantly lied to the House of Commons. A safe prediction: in this post-responsible government era, he won’t resign. And John Baird will field all of the Opposition questions.

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This page contains a single entry by Dr. Dawg published on December 1, 2012 10:12 AM.

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