Sunday, October 3, 2010

Liberals Angry Over Access To Information

Liberal MP Shiban Coady has sent a letter to the Information Commissioner to complain that somebody in the government has impeded the free flow of outgoing information requested through the Access to Information Act. Is she angry at the CBC for refusing to release information from requests regarding their cost expenditures? No, that isn't what's got her hot under the collar, she is angry at a Minister's aide who has already resigned for admitting to blocking requests. The aide's boss already asked for an investigation, Shoban just wants to expand the investigation to include the Prime Minister; as if Harper the controlling dictator directly controls every single machination of government or has time to respond to individual public requests for general information.

I support government transparency and believe that we the people have a right to know what's going on (except in matters of national security or military documents which could compromise the safety of our soldiers in the field). The government minister requested the investigation in which he too will be investigated. When I see the Liberals jumping in with both feet, I just wonder where was all that passionate conviction when the CBC refused to answer requests for how they spend tax payer's money. Fortunately a judge has ruled that the CBC must respond to the requests, so we will see if they do so honestly, without interference...and if they don't, I will be anxiously awaiting the wrath of Shiban...


  1. Evan Solomon discussed ATI requests on Friday (?) on Power & Politics with MPs, the Information Commissioner, and the power panel. To their credit, Don Newman in particular, said that all governments, regardless of political stripe, dislike to disclose information.

    Apparently there's a huge backlog, and it takes much longer than the 30 days the law allows for complying with the law on ATI requests.

    What I'd like to know is this: how does the number of ATI requests for the years since the Conservatives have been in power compare with the number of requests filed with the previous Liberal government? Is it possible that the backlog has been caused by an increased number of requests?

    The power panel complained about the current government's practice of disclosing the names of reporters who had made ATI requests, a practice since stopped, I suppose because news organizations complained. I wonder ... is that an example of cognitive dissonance? I mean, the media complains about the government's lack of cooperation in complying with ATI requests, which they claim proves lack of transparency, yet they complain if the name of the reporter filing the request is disclosed!?! Does transparency apply only to politicians? The media hides behind anonymous sources, and they're loath to have their names attached to ATI requests. Why?
    -- Gabby in QC

  2. Liberals don't want CBC to have to reveal documents with their names on it. Imagine the info on Chretien and Trudeau!

    Liberals are so sucky lately, I can't even get excited about an election against will be a massacre.

  3. I hope The Iceman doesn't mind ... just a personal note for Hunter ... I've been unable to log in with my Google account to comment at your blog.
    --Gabby in QC