×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Misleading Robocalls Went To Voters ID'd As Non-Tories

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the set-phasers-to-annoy dept.

Canada 148

silentbrad writes "An investigation by CBC News has turned up voters all over Canada who say the reason they got robocalls sending them to fictitious polling stations was that they'd revealed they would not vote Conservative. Although the Conservative Party has denied any involvement in the calls, these new details suggest that the misleading calls relied on data gathered by, and carefully guarded by, the Conservative Party. Known as 'CIMS,' the database assigns a 'smiley' face to supporters, and a 'sad' face to non-Conservatives. Liberal and NDP politicians say it would make no sense to call randomly, since many of the voters misled would be Conservatives."

cancel ×
This is a preview of your comment

No Comment Title Entered

Anonymous Coward 1 minute ago

No Comment Entered

148 comments

omg (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39387987)

Phonecalls?

A list who voted what??

How?

well, obviously (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39387989)

The Conservative party is the party representing the interests of powerful people who wish their interests to be represented in law (*). It is in the interests such people to have such a party in power. It is a logical consequence that they will use any means possible to get this party into power.

Owen Jones said of the granddaddy English Conservative Party, quoting a speaker at his college: "What you have to realise about the Conservative party is that it is a coalition of privileged interests. Its main purpose is to defend that privilege. And the way it wins elections is by giving just enough to just enough other people."

(*) Contrast e.g. philosophical libertarians who in principle (at least) will not want the government to give them special favours.

Re:well, obviously (2)

Pinky's Brain (1158667) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388223)

(**) Other than the privilege of land ownership of course. (If for a moment we assume that with libertarians you mean Rothbard style libertarians and not Geolibertarians.)

Re:well, obviously (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39388473)

Georgism must apply for libertarianism to have any sort of consistency or longevity. Not only is any "first conqueror/user becomes first owner" arbitrary, but otherwise any entity consolidating ownership of natural resources becomes the de facto government.

Re:well, obviously (1)

Pinky's Brain (1158667) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388749)

Oh I agree, but the libertarian movement as a whole is overrun with Rothbard type loonies ... I never quite understand why sane people want to identify with them, the name is tainted.

Every large party is beholden to power and money (0, Troll)

OeLeWaPpErKe (412765) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388955)

And so is the liberal party ... Hell even communism has plenty of rich supporters (In my experience rich capitalists are much more likely to be communist than poor ones, like 1% versus 0.01%).

It would be hard for any present-day political movement to be different, really. This would probably have existed where sovereign states had manageable numbers and large participation, and very limited immigration or mobility. Like in ancient Athens where everybody who possibly could was at least 50% a politician. But I'm sure you see that a political party in a country of tens of millions of people needs powerful intrests, even to just announce it's existence to a significant fraction of the population. Add to that that most people, libertarian or liberal or conservative have zero knowledge of the actual ideas their party supposedly defends (supposedly because the liberals are about as liberal as conservatives are conservative), even just what they entail. When it comes to the history and probable effects of a political theory, heh. Good luck finding anyone who even knows.

It's actually worse than that : people will literally defend lies over documented history, an obvious case of this would be the fact that it is democrats/progressives that historically first were pro-slavery then spawned the ku-klux clan, and then became pro-segregation (an evolution that grudgingly and extremely slowly happened under extreme republican pressure. Al Gore started his career defending segregation), and that democrats have always been the party of the rich, not the poor. Although similar misconceptions exist of the republican party (e.g. anyone claiming they represent the intrests of the church urgenly needs to read a history book).

The tiny parties, like communists or (one of the many kinds of) anarchists, and to a much lesser degree the libertarians. At least they know what their party actually tries to accomplish. Good luck finding a democrat or republican voter that knows the meat of the party's position, even on well-known topics, beyond the soundbites on the news. Smaller parties have better informed members. That also seems to me the primary reason for their very limited numbers.

I for one fear what will happen when politicians realize the obvious : that facebook/google ads is a bigger political influence than any string of debates ever will be. Sadly the first person to really realize that is Silvio Berlusconi. Read up on him, cause he will be the inspiration for a large number of future American presidents.

Your point ?

Re:Every large party is beholden to power and mone (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39389249)

I guess the point could be restated by contrasting with what the Conservative party is/was not.

Old Labour was in no way the party of the rich elite. Old Labour brought about Legal Aid, the National Health Service, needs-based allowances and a massive programme of nationalisation of industry. The country had the unique position of suffering vicious wounds of war without having been occupied or made an invalid. The people believed that a society comprises the sum of inputs of all its members, and that a society so cooperating will be successful - so it should look after all its members. It was in much more debt than today, but considered that the answer was more investment to rebuild infrastructure which would pay off in the long term. It worked.

A propaganda campaign since the '70s has turned the country stupid again, and we've been slowly getting more Conservative since. Blair, as dictator-enabler Thatcher noted, was Thatcherite. What will we see in the future? Will there be a push to classical libertarianism? Will we return to social democracy? All I can say for now is we're well on the journey of the state being the enforcement arm of various mafia corporations who are slowly becoming the majority receiver of HM Treasury funds.

well, "olds" maybe (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39390483)

This story has been floating around the Canadian press for weeks - maybe months now. Slashdot - "olds" for kiddies who don't keep up on the real world.

Democracy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39387991)

Hurrah for democracy!

Morbo says... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39387993)

It was a coincidence and nothing more!

some U.S. scandals recently as well (3, Interesting)

Trepidity (597) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388003)

Listing the wrong date seems to be a favorite tactic of misleading American robocalls. There was some legislation [projectvote.org] recently introduced to specifically tackle it, but it's probably illegal under existing laws as well. The main game seems to be whether, as here, political parties can feed the data to "third party" callers without it getting traced back to them.

Kettle, black, etc (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39388007)

None of the parties are really getting away looking too great lately. The NDP has basically had to admit one of their politicians leaked damaging personal information about Toews, the Liberals are .. well the liberals, but their last leader didn't do them any favours with his here again, back to america tomorrow antics.

For just once I wish these guys could stop slinging mud and do something productive, but this is politics we're talking about.

Re:Kettle, black, etc (4, Informative)

TheCycoONE (913189) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388189)

You're confusing accusations with facts. It was a Liberal staff member that leaked the information about Toews, not an NDP politician as the Conservatives initially claimed (without evidence).

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/story/2012/02/27/pol-liberals-vikileaks.html [www.cbc.ca]

Re:Kettle, black, etc (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39388651)

You mean "leaked" the publicly available divorce information about Toews porking his babysiter?
All information on divorce dockets is freely available on the internet. Suck it.

Re:Kettle, black, etc (2)

jpmorgan (517966) | more than 2 years ago | (#39391209)

No it's not. It's a paper file stored at the courthouse which you have to sign out to view. That's how we know who was responsible: the record of who has viewed your divorce file is also "public" information.

These kinds of divorce records are 'public' in the sense that anybody can look them up, which is public in the same sense that your personal whereabouts are public, since somebody can always follow you around, or the government could track your car's license plate. If your car's location is public, but police require a warrant to use a GPS tracker, why should details of somebody's personal life be considered public knowledge, just because the records are publicly available?

The line between public and private has always been grey. This didn't use to be a huge issue... if the cops wanted to know where you are, they'd have to physically follow you around. And 30 years ago, if you dug out Vic Toews' divorce file, you wouldn't be able to spread his dirty laundry far and wide. The availability of modern technology that lets you track thousands, or disseminate details of somebody's private life to the world, means we now have to be a lot more thoughtful about what we do.

So yes, the information is publicly available. But there's a difference between 'legal' and 'right,' and the attitude of 'fuck Vic Toews' simply contributes to the ugly, slanderous nature of modern politics and modern society in general. So suck it yourself: you're part of what's wrong with this country.

Re:Kettle, black, etc (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39390139)

Odd, cause the NDP were fessing up to it according to the National Post. But anyways, point being none of the parties are looking that great lately, and while they -can- sit and point fingers, I really wish they'd do something more productive. I know, I can be so niave sometimes.

Re:Kettle, black, etc (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39390465)

Odd, cause the NDP were fessing up to it according to the National Post.

Lies. Damned lies. You're caught lying and your answer is to lie more. Stephen Harper, is that you?

Re:Kettle, black, etc (4, Insightful)

Eric S. Smith (162) | more than 2 years ago | (#39391249)

Odd, cause the NDP were fessing up to it according to the National Post.

Rae was NDP back when he was premier of Ontario, but he's federal Liberal leader now.

...none of the parties are looking that great lately...

I certainly hope you're not trying to put the Vickileaks Twitter prank, a protest against the provisions of Bill C-30, in the same category as scumbag election tampering. One hurt the feelings of a cabinet minister who'd just called everyone who didn't support his stupid bill child molesters; the other was an attempt to stop people from voting.

I really wish they'd do something more productive.

The Conservative agenda proceeds apace, with an austerity budget — hey, everyone's doing it, great excuse to gut the public sector — out in a week or so.

Re:Kettle, black, etc (4, Insightful)

Maow (620678) | more than 2 years ago | (#39391193)

the Liberals are .. well the liberals, but their last leader didn't do them any favours with his here again, back to america tomorrow antics.

Fucking liar. Ignatieff accepted a position at U of Toronto [utoronto.ca].

Why do conbots like free trade and the ability of the most talented to be able to accept the highest paid, most prestigious positions anywhere in the world... except when it's to their political advantage to smear someone for doing exactly that? (Note, I'm not a big fan of Ignatieff, but compared to what we've got, he's several orders of magnitude better.)

For just once I wish these guys could stop slinging mud and do something productive, but this is politics we're talking about.

For just once I wish a conbot would knock it off with the false equivalencies about how murderers and speeders are the same because they both broke a law. (Conbots being the murderers in this analogy, in case you're too intellectually challenged to understand it.)

Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (0)

F69631 (2421974) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388011)

Maybe the conservative party is behind this, maybe not... but does it really matter?

Let's go with the assumption that someone high up in the party organization is to blame. How many people knew about this tactic being employed? Three? Five? Seven? How many people are employed by the party? Three hundred? Five hundred? Seven hundred? How many people voted for them? Twenty million? (I really have no idea, actually. But the point is, we're talking about many, many orders of magnitude in difference here)

So, if we find out that a handful of corrupted people employed a dirty tactic, what should follow? Sure, let's convict those guys but after that... Should everyone stop voting for the party they felt to represent them the best, because of a couple of bad apples? As disgusting as this tactic was, I have hard time seeing how "Yes" would be a reasonable response. If the answer is "No", we end up saying "It doesn't matter whether the conservative party is responsible or not".

Maybe we get some public discourse about what kind of data you should be allowed to keep in a database but... meh.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (4, Insightful)

realityimpaired (1668397) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388043)

The problem is they got a thin majority, and that some of the ridings they won were won by fewer than 1000 votes. Many of those ridings, there are reports of this kind of robocall happening. There is every possibility that they wouldn't have won, or at least wouldn't have won a majority, if this kind of disenfranchisement wasn't happening.

More than that, it's illegal to represent yourself falsely as an official working for Elections Canada. It's also electoral fraud. Strictly speaking, under the law, they can have their charter as an official party revoked over this, meaning that if this goes all the way, we don't currently have a legal government, and our last election was invalid. Particularly interesting considering that Canada is one of the few countries that always gets asked to send observers to foreign countries to make sure the election is done properly.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

alphatel (1450715) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388087)

It's all kosher as long as we say it's kosher

The Kosher Guy

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

pinfall (2430412) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388197)

Really, find a victim. No one was injured and voting is pointless anyway. At least that's what I would tell my attorney to say.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (5, Insightful)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388419)

How about anyone subsequently imprisoned under the omnibus crime bill?

Seniors?

Veterans who've had their benefits cut?

"Find a victim" of the Harper government is easy. Getting the Harper government to admit that the people are being victimized to pay for "anti crime" legislation and the screwed up F-35 delivery schedule is another thing.

CANADA is the victim. All of it.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39389341)

mod that post up eh!

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39389663)

The problem is they got a thin majority, and that some of the ridings they won were won by fewer than 1000 votes.

I'm actually rather concerned that the vote was close enough to enable a few dirty tricks to steal the election. What are Canadians smoking?

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 2 years ago | (#39391301)

I don't think there were that many close races. Guelph, which seemed to be sort of an epicenter of ill deeds, was still won handily by a Liberal. To unseat the Tories would mean having to vacate the results of eleven or twelve seats (depending on where the Speaker came from). I think I'd heard there might be four or five ridings where there was trouble reported and where there sufficiently tight races to lead to questions about the result, which still gives the Tories a majority. So I don't think, per se, the majority is illegitimate.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

Eric S. Smith (162) | more than 2 years ago | (#39391331)

What are Canadians smoking?

Incumbency, plus the major opposition party sabotaging itself with infighting in the last two elections ("Wahh, I don't want to win if he's the leader.").

That said, we will kick a party out based on a corruption scandal â" if we can find a replacement. As much as I'd enjoy an NDP/Green coalition, what's really going to happen, eventually, is that the Liberals will recover with an electable leader and sell the concept of the Conservatives as arrogant and corrupt. I think Rae could do it absent punditry spending the whole campaign declaring him unelectable, but that's like saying that an empty balloon would float if it had helium in it.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (4, Insightful)

SigmundFloyd (994648) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388045)

So, if we find out that a handful of corrupted people employed a
dirty tactic, what should follow? Sure, let's convict those guys but after
that... Should everyone stop voting for the party they felt to represent them
the best, because of a couple of bad apples?

"A couple of bad apples"? Are you serious? You might want to study some recent history. It's always the conservatives spying on people and generally pulling dirty tricks. They're the scum of this world.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (0)

peragrin (659227) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388089)

Nope all sides spy and pull dirty tricks.

Conservatives are stupid enough to get caught.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (4, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388095)

By definition, liberals spy on government and conservatives spy on people, so really, your argument falls flat on its face.

All sides spy and pull dirty tricks, Conservatives are evil enough to do it to people; liberals do it to corporations, which conservatives would like us to believe are people.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (0)

NicknameAvailable (2581237) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388117)

By definition, liberals spy on government and conservatives spy on people, so really, your argument falls flat on its face.

If we are allowed to bring strawman party specific definitions I think I'd win. For instance: Liberals are responsible for all ill in the world, by definition. Conservatives don't believe the government should be large enough to spy on people, Liberals _feel_ otherwise (a symptom of having a broken cortex or few in their head).

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388299)

If we are allowed to bring strawman party specific definitions

You just failed the "allowed to post a rebuttal" test: Political ideologies (conservative, liberal) are not parties. You may try again after you check yourself before you wreck yourself. I suggest a dictionary, asshole.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

newbie_fantod (514871) | more than 2 years ago | (#39389815)

Political ideologies (conservative, liberal) are not parties

UM...
http://www.liberal.ca/ [liberal.ca] (The Liberal Party of Canada)
http://www.conservative.ca/ [conservative.ca] (The Conservative Party of Canada)

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 2 years ago | (#39390017)

Well, egg on half of face. But that's not how I meant it, and calling yourself the liberal or conservative party is bullshit anyway, because parties regularly take inconsistent stances. Liberal and conservative are words which have specific meanings.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

NicknameAvailable (2581237) | more than 2 years ago | (#39391977)

Yes, they are words that have specific meanings, and that was the basis of my comment. For instance to say "By definition, liberals spy on government and conservatives spy on people, so really, your argument falls flat on its face" is not only incorrect, it flies in the face of conservative ideologies. You cannot have a government _capable_ of spying on people if you have a conservative government, the whole fucking ideology is based around limited (ie: CONSERVATIVE) government.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

NicknameAvailable (2581237) | more than 2 years ago | (#39391947)

If we are allowed to bring strawman party specific definitions

You just failed the "allowed to post a rebuttal" test: Political ideologies (conservative, liberal) are not parties. You may try again after you check yourself before you wreck yourself. I suggest a dictionary, asshole.

Typical Liberal, spewing pop culture and failing all around.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

sjames (1099) | more than 2 years ago | (#39391015)

I don't know about the Conservatives in Canada, But I know the American variety *claims* to be for small and ineffectual government but somehow the government manages to grow even bigger and become more intrusive under the conservatives' watch AND it provides less benefit to the people (so I guess they at least get the ineffectual part domestically). Under liberals it still grows bigger and more intrusive but it at least makes some effort to provide benefits (however poorly).

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (5, Interesting)

Secret Rabbit (914973) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388187)

Nope, they pull *far* more than any one else; others don't even come close. Just check out the number of votes of no confidence that they pulled when Martin had a minority; they didn't even try to make it work. At that point the Cons pushed for a coalition government, then when the Cons get a minority and the other parties go for a coalition Harper cries about it not be democratic, etc taking advantage of the electorates ignorance of how our system of government works. Not to mention during that minority they attached a no confidence rider to bills so they'd pass. He promised he wouldn't do it during the following election, but then that next time he gets in, what's one of the first things he does? That's right, the same bloody no confidence rider BS.

I could say the same thing about their Economic "action plan." According to the PBO it was their policies that got Canada into the situation it's in (made it worse that is) and their plan to get out of it was to do more of the same type of policies!?!?!?

And now with their majority, what do they do? They don't listen to every study done with regards to mandatory minimum sentences (they don't work), nor anything even approaching Science (hey, why use logic when yah got ideology). Thus, C-10 passes. Similarly, for C-11 with regards to digital locks and no doubt once the fire dies down with C-30 (the spying bill). As in, after C-30 passes, they'll, by regulation (add/delete by reg is already in the bill), add in information that'll be available without a warrant.

I could go on. (It's funny what a memory can do when used, eh.)

Harper is a two faced asshole that does nothing but dirty political gamesmanship. He's a disgrace. Same goes for Vic Toews and Dean Del Mastro and...

Now, I'm not saying that the other parties are squeaky clean. But, in comparison, Harper et al look as though they have been rolling in the mud while the other parties might have scuffs on their shoes (Liberals likely worse than the NDP).

Seriously, this election fraud shouldn't be a surprise to anyone. But, what would be nice is if the Cons would see at least some repercussions for their actions.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

Nemyst (1383049) | more than 2 years ago | (#39389079)

Harper isn't a two faced asshole. He's quite content with showing to the world that he's an asshole, thing is some people actually like it. You don't even need to dig to find out what he's doing, he doesn't bother covering up anything anymore. He's got his majority.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

microbox (704317) | more than 2 years ago | (#39389415)

I agree with that. On average, people are attracted to the powerful before they are attracted to the just. Harper is powerful and unjust.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (2)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | more than 2 years ago | (#39390345)

Harper isn't a two faced asshole.

Mod +insightful.
Harper appears to lack a human face entirely. In its stead there appears to be an asshole (of goatse proportions) uncontrollably spasming his vile ordure on the people of Canada.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

tomhath (637240) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388195)

No doubt supporters of the Conservatives were involved, but nobody has been caught. All this report shows is that someone knew which voters to call on election day, I get "opinion poll" calls all the time, so identifying those voters wouldn't require access to a secret smiley-face database. But mentioning it in the same article makes for a juicy story,

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

dryeo (100693) | more than 2 years ago | (#39390827)

It doesn't matter who did it. If enough people didn't vote in some ridings due to the Robocalls then those elections are null and void and there needs to be bye-elections in those ridings.
If there are enough of those ridings that the bye-elections could remove the Conservatives majority then Royal Assent should be withheld on all bills until after the bye-elections.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 2 years ago | (#39391313)

The extent of the calls suggests otherwise, that CIMS was used. It's beyond belief to imagine that independently several Tory campaigns compiled lists of voters sufficiently accurate to be able to make misleading calls directed at non-Tory voters, all being done at the same time.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

sjames (1099) | more than 2 years ago | (#39390891)

Stupidity is a good enough reason to vote someone out.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39388047)

WTF? Do you apply this to every crime? Assuming the content of your message was supposed to support the subject, saying that it's irrelevant who was responsible.

"Okay, if we could catch the axe shop-lifter/axe murderer we could prosecute them but how many people in their neighbourhood aren't implicated? Surely we're not going to burn down the whole neighborhood! So what does it matter who actually did it at all??? Let's just sweep the whole thing under the carpet and let them get on with it."

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39388211)

It will be so cute when you learn to read. I'm already thinking about buying you some of the "Choose Your Own Adventure" books for your birthday next year.

Why so many excuses? (4, Insightful)

arcite (661011) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388053)

We have a system of law and order. The law was broken and HOPEFULLY the investigation will find out who was involved in this plot to steal the election. The Conservatives only won around 35% of the popular vote, it was a TIGHT election. A few thousand votes swinging either way in close ridings would have been enough to radically change the outcome.

"Should everyone stop voting for the party they felt to represent them the best, because of a couple of bad apples?

Canada is not the USA, we have more than two parties. We have dozens of parties! Are you so ideologically blind as to vote for one party, even if you know they are corrupt and do not represent your best interests as a tax paying citizen? Really? Are you that cynical? Because if so, that is incredibly sad. We deserve the best government money can buy. If there is corruption, it should be routed out. If a party is rotten, it's leader should resign. If the Prime Minister can no longer guarantee he/she has the trust of the citizenry, a confidence vote should be called. We have many options in our democracy, we do not have to accept corruption, lies, deception.

Re:Why so many excuses? (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39388091)

Personally I'd prefer the best government money can't buy.

Re:Why so many excuses? (1)

erikkemperman (252014) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388151)

Well said... Altough I think I get what you meant, the turn of phrase

We deserve the best government money can buy.

sort of undermines your point.

Re:Why so many excuses? (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388177)

You have the best government money can buy. It's not your money that buys it, but rest assured, just like any other whores out there, they don't do it for free.

Re:Why so many excuses? (1)

Eric S. Smith (162) | more than 2 years ago | (#39390889)

We have dozens of parties!

Orientation note for foreigners: it's really more like three or four.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39388071)

Should everyone stop voting for the party they felt to represent them the best, because of a couple of bad apples?

I'm not sure what sort of a "should" that is. Certainly people are entitled to stop voting for a party on the grounds that it's culture is one that has allowed criminals to gain influence within it. Beats deciding on whether you like their faces or even if they seem charming in interviews let alone tribal loyalties. What sort of factors do you think the average voter takes into account in deciding which part "best represents" them?

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

Sique (173459) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388107)

Normally it goes like this: In every election district, where this happened, the candidate most likely to profit from it gets disqualified, and the runner-up is declared winner. Any honest candidate falling victim to it can then thank for the support by unwanted robocalls.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (4, Insightful)

strack (1051390) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388115)

considering that a database of personally identifiable voter intent was kept at all, it would appear a atmosphere of disrespect for the electoral process already existed in that party, and provided fertile ground for electoral fraud. so yes. it does matter. and as for the numbers, how about when bush won florida in 2000 by 200 votes? its not the total amount of people who voted that matters. its about how much you can influence the often razor thin margins in certain districts, especially in close elections.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39388275)

I would assume that as all parties call and campaign they would keep a list of supporters and those who are non supporters. I would be surprised of that were not the case. I would like to see a detailed analysis that shows the statistical correlation between riding differential projections and robocall reports. Also, they should be able to track the account used and get more complete data. Let us see the complete evidence and then make a decision based on the evidence rather than based on statements like " Bruce then Googled the caller's number and found out it was the Conservative campaign office. Still, she wanted to be sure." All of us here at slashdot should know how easily the caller id number can be spoofed and we should be aware that the number on the caller id in no way authenticate the call as actually coming from a particular place.

Lets find out who is responsible and deal with the situation as the evidence suggests and not based solely on the accusations that are flying around that seem to be speculation based on small tidbits of fact.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (2)

Shavano (2541114) | more than 2 years ago | (#39389519)

There's nothing wrong with knowing who your friends are and which they aren't or at least who you don't know are likely to vote for you. The only wrong is attempting to interfere with their right to vote. The penalty for that should be severe prison sentences.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (4, Insightful)

khallow (566160) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388215)

Maybe the conservative party is behind this, maybe not... but does it really matter?

Yes. Aside from being very illegal and possibly throwing a number of elections, it's a blow to the reputation of that party. if they're leaking confidential information to a sleazy robocaller, then what else could they leak? Credit cards? It might also have legal consequence for the party even if "a few bad apples" did it.

And yes, such a display of criminality and incompetence would affect my voting decisions.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39389209)

if they're leaking confidential information to a sleazy robocaller

Not just confidential information but private information that is illegal for anybody else to have. If you're a corporation (or non-profit, etc), there's a set of privacy laws that covers you. If you're the government, there's another set of privacy laws that covers you.

There are no privacy laws that apply to political parties in Canada. They can collect anything they can get their hands on and do whatever they want with it.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 2 years ago | (#39391353)

Exactly. Political parties have built a blank cheque into the privacy legislation both at the Federal level and in pretty much every Province as well. There's been no big shit-storms from the Opposition parties either, because they benefit from it. This is all the politicians, regardless of affiliation or ideology, getting together and deciding to allowing themselves to compile databases with probably the most sensitive and important information one can gather on a voter; who their preference is. Frankly, what is the point of a private voting cubicle, if every party out there is completely free to determine who you're likely to vote for (or at least against). It violates at the most fundamental level the right to a person to vote with confidence that his choice is completely private, and yet the only issue anyone seems to have is that apparently the wrong people got a hold of the list, and not the fact that a political party is even allowed to compile such a list.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (3, Insightful)

Hatta (162192) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388267)

Should everyone stop voting for the party they felt to represent them the best, because of a couple of bad apples?

If you are represented best by a bunch of criminal thugs, then feel free to continue voting for them. Your apologetics are every bit as disgusting as their tactics.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

Scrameustache (459504) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388847)

does it really matter?

Does it really matter if they stole the election? Does it really matter if the government is run not by democracy, but by fraud?

Should everyone stop voting for the party they felt to represent them the best, because of a couple of bad apples? As disgusting as this tactic was, I have hard time seeing how "Yes" would be a reasonable response.

If you feel that the party of the anti-democratic, election-stealing, frauds and liars is the party that represents you...

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

Phrogman (80473) | more than 2 years ago | (#39389155)

Yes it matters. I am cynical and assume all politicians are criminals who simply haven't been caught yet. There have been a few exceptions that I think honestly wanted to bring changes and meant what they said, but the rest I think are lying through their teeth to get power and influence.
However, whether or not that is true, if we want a system that works, we need to hold politicians up to a higher standard than their voters. If they break the law then they need to be held accountable. Too much goes on these days because no on is so held.
Do I think the Conservative leadership (including Harper) knew about the robocalls. You bet I do, Harper runs the Conservative party very strictly. I don't think much happens without his knowledge and approval. Do I think he will suffer from it - nah, the bulk of Canadians who voted for him are too stupid to see what he is doing to the country.
I dont think the Liberals are any better. I do think the NDP are less likely to do this kind of shit and less likely to try to force things down the throat of the Canadian public, but that doesn't mean they can run the country any better either.
I want Trudeau back. I didn't agree with him much of the time, but I trusted him to do what he said and not to lie to the public. I can't say that for many politicians since.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (2)

sjames (1099) | more than 2 years ago | (#39390873)

Next step is to see if the people above them knew or should have known about the corruption. Either way, they should be on notice that they MUST vigilantly police this sort of thing in the future.

Of course, if the party keeps attracting a disproportionate number of bad apples, it might be worth a good apple's time to think about how well represented they really are.

Perhaps it's worth considering if the party's philosophy is creating a framework where corruption can thrive. I know *I* wouldn't want to help corruption thrive without a very careful re-think. Of course, the consequences of stopping at nothing to stamp out corruption can be even worse, so that has to be considered as well.

Re:Who is responsible? Irrelevant... (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 2 years ago | (#39391275)

You're right on one level. It's unlikely that that many people knew about this. You don't want it widely known, even among the campaign ranks, because someone with a conscience might just say "fuck it" and call Elections Canada. And you certainly don't let the highest echelons, particularly the leader, because if there ever could be a line drawn between the act of fraud and the leader, it would likely lead to catastrophic damage to the party, both legally and electorally.

That being said, the political parties have asked for this. By exempting themselves from do-not-call lists and privacy rules, by allowing such lists to be compiled in the first place (and it sure isn't just the Tories, all the major parties do it, in Canada, the States, Britain and probably everywhere else), the law of eventualities tells you that someone somewhere at some point is going to decide that it's a nuclear option and they're going to see some tight races (and there were some very tight races, particularly in Ontario) and are going to decide to use it.

The fact of the matter is that the compiling of these lists should be strictly controlled. The law should require that voters be able to request their names be removed entire, that every access be logged and stored and those logs be made available to Elections Canada upon request, and that falsifications of such logs be a serious offense even in and of itself. These lists should carry such substantial legal burdens that parties may simple reconsider the entire notion of compiling them, but if they do, then at least the electorate can be confident that any future abuses can be more easily traced. And if the party itself is not taking good care of its voter list, then the party can be fined as well.

As well, political parties should put themselves under the same do-not-call regimens that any other marketing organization (this goes for charities as well, there should be no exemptions at all, and the same fines for anyone). This would be a demonstration of good faith on their part. It won't prevent such a stunt happening again, but at least the very act of robocalling someone who had put themselves on a do-not-call list could lead to sanctions, and voters would have a way of at least partially protecting themselves in the future.

Let's talk about responsibility (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39388039)

Prior to elections in Canada you receive a document from the government telling you where you will vote and contact information should you have questions or issues. You are instructed to keep it in a safe place and even bring it with you to the polling station. That said, this list of voters is pure gold. Nigerian or other scammers would probably pony up some serious coin for hundreds (thousands?) of names of people void of common sense and who will believe anything a phone caller tells them. Our local NDP member of parliment has been doing much hand wringing over the fact that these poor people where so deceived and someone's gunna' pay... blah, blah, blah. But I see no wringing of hands of how folks seem to have abandoned the notion of being self reliant, responsible, skeptical or just admitting they got duped because they are chumps. You've got your tempest and your teapot. Nothing to see here.

Re:Let's talk about responsibility (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39388109)

Prior to elections in Canada you receive a document from the government telling you where you will vote and contact information should you have questions or issues. You are instructed to keep it in a safe place and even bring it with you to the polling station. That said, this list of voters is pure gold. Nigerian or other scammers would probably pony up some serious coin for hundreds (thousands?) of names of people void of common sense and who will believe anything a phone caller tells them. Our local NDP member of parliment has been doing much hand wringing over the fact that these poor people where so deceived and someone's gunna' pay... blah, blah, blah. But I see no wringing of hands of how folks seem to have abandoned the notion of being self reliant, responsible, skeptical or just admitting they got duped because they are chumps. You've got your tempest and your teapot. Nothing to see here.

Ofcourse there is nothing wrong with defrauding voters... how would conservatives ever get elected if honesty was a requirement?

When will people learn (4, Insightful)

moderators_are_w*nke (571920) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388081)

Don't tell them who you're going to vote for. They have no right to know.

Re:When will people learn (4, Interesting)

FireFury03 (653718) | more than 2 years ago | (#39389005)

Don't tell them who you're going to vote for. They have no right to know.

There are good reasons to tell them that you're not voting for them (and explain why): If they are able to understand the reasons why people aren't voting for them, they can change their policies to reflect what the public want. If no one ever explains that they aren't voting for them (and why) then the party is left losing the election and having to guess what people want for the next time around, by which time what people want may have changed.

Certainly, there are good reasons to _allow_ people to keep their votes secret, but there are also good reasons for people to opt to waive that right to secrecy.

Re:When will people learn (0)

am 2k (217885) | more than 2 years ago | (#39389929)

There are good reasons to tell them that you're not voting for them (and explain why): If they are able to understand the reasons why people aren't voting for them, they can change their policies to reflect what the public want.

If you still think that people change their views based on outside feedback, you probably aren't old enough to be allowed to vote yet.

Re:When will people learn (1)

Imrik (148191) | more than 2 years ago | (#39390355)

People will occasionally change their minds about things they don't care much about based on outside feedback. It's possible that the points you disagree on are things which aren't all that important to them.

Re:When will people learn (1)

FireFury03 (653718) | more than 2 years ago | (#39391703)

If you still think that people change their views based on outside feedback, you probably aren't old enough to be allowed to vote yet.

I change my views based on outside feedback. Not directly because I want to change my view to please people, but because feedback lets me see the subject from a different perspective which allows me to realise when my view doesn't mesh well with reality.

If you're the sort of person who never changes their view based on new information, I guess you're some kind of religious nut?

Re:When will people learn (1)

am 2k (217885) | more than 2 years ago | (#39391735)

I change my views based on outside feedback. Not directly because I want to change my view to please people, but because feedback lets me see the subject from a different perspective which allows me to realise when my view doesn't mesh well with reality.

If you're the sort of person who never changes their view based on new information, I guess you're some kind of religious nut?

Maybe I'm just bitter. Everybody has certain principles, based probably on upbringing. Those only change very very slowly (over decades).

Changing the perspective is something else, since you're only providing new information to enhance someone's world model, not trying to change what someone believes. For example, you'll never get modern conservatives to not feed as much money as possible into the military, no matter what you tell them.

It makes no sense at all (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39388127)

I can't believe that the Cons could possibly think they'd get away with such a plan. I could believe that the Libs would find it useful to give up a few votes in order to make the Cons look like cheats. That seems a hell of a lot more plausible to me. FWIW, I'm not Canadian, and I'm strongly independent in any case.

Re:It makes no sense at all (4, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388229)

Considering how much they got away with so far, it's only logical that they push the envelope further. The general voter apathy makes it even possible, if not likely, that they will still get away with it. What will happen? A committee will get formed that, after lengthy discussion, comes to the conclusion that no direct involvement of a party can be established, maybe a scapegoat or two gets sacrificed (read: someone who wanted to leave politics for a better paying career in the private sector anyway), then it gets closed. Voters are stupid enough to forget about it 'til the next time anyway.

Re:It makes no sense at all (4, Insightful)

Sponge Bath (413667) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388625)

The general voter apathy makes it even possible...

Yes. Election fraud is a direct attack on democracy. Voters who doesn't care enough to be vigilant against scams like this are accomplices to the crime.

Re:It makes no sense at all (1)

Eric S. Smith (162) | more than 2 years ago | (#39391135)

A committee will get formed that, after lengthy discussion...

It's worth noting that Elections Canada is investigating, and they have burned the Conservatives before (on the so called "in-and-out" campaign spending limit violations). This won't go away entirely based on a committee of politicians meeting in camera and deciding that everything's dandy.

Re:It makes no sense at all (4, Informative)

eddy the lip (20794) | more than 2 years ago | (#39390535)

During their last term, the Conservatives:

- were convicted of campaign finance fraud (the in-and-out scandal), using accounting tricks to funnel more money than allowed into critical campaigns,

- suspended parliament to kill an inquiry into the treatment of Afghan detainees,

- were found in contempt of parliament for refusing to disclose the cost of several big ticket items (including law & order programs, corporate tax cuts and purchasing fighters.) This is the first time a British style parliament anywhere has been found in contempt.

Then we had an election, and voted them back in, this time with a majority. So, yeah, they figure than pretty much get away with it.

Re:It makes no sense at all (2)

jpmorgan (517966) | more than 2 years ago | (#39391351)

During their last term, the Conservatives:

- were convicted of campaign finance fraud (the in-and-out scandal), using accounting tricks to funnel more money than allowed into critical campaigns,

Which the NDP - the official opposition - also engaged in. After the Conservatives were convicted, the NDP settled and repaid.

- suspended parliament to kill an inquiry into the treatment of Afghan detainees,

Which happened under the previous Liberal administration.

- were found in contempt of parliament for refusing to disclose the cost of several big ticket items (including law & order programs, corporate tax cuts and purchasing fighters.) This is the first time a British style parliament anywhere has been found in contempt.

Which is about as relevant to Canadian politics as Bill Clinton's impeachment was to American politics: the other parties got together and voted the Conservatives in contempt. Regardless of the merits, most Canadians view it as political maneuvering.

Then we had an election, and voted them back in, this time with a majority. So, yeah, they figure than pretty much get away with it.

Well the lastest polls show that: 1. they haven't lost any public support since the election, and 2. they have a 60% approval rating outside of Quebec (and a 35% approval rating in Quebec).

So you're right, they pretty much can. The Liberals, NDP and Bloc have been trying to stick scandals to the Conservatives, and paint them as extremists for years. We've been told that the Conservatives would make abortion illegal, they'd get rid of gay marriage. There was the infamous attack ad which claimed the CPC, if elected, would have soldiers on the streets! The "Secret Agenda" it was called. Once the Conservatives were in power, the "Secret Agenda" would be out, and they'd destroy the country.

But the thing about scandals and mud is... if you can't make it stick, it tends to backfire and damage the accuser's credibility, not the accused. The CPC been in power for over half a decade now, and abortion isn't illegal, gay marriage isn't illegal, the economy is doing reasonably well and hey look, there aren't any soldiers deployed onto the streets. So far, the secret agenda appears to be mostly deficit reduction and following through on their campaign promises (like the omnibus crime bill).

Hell, even since the last election it's been a constant hail of 'C-11 = SOPA, C-11 = SOPA,' when it turns out to be nothing of the sort.

So right now, there's no proof of any wrongdoing by anybody in the CPC at all. There's an investigation underway, and I'll wait to see what Elections Canada and the RCMP discover. The CPC's loudest critics are accusing them of stealing the election, but I stopped listening to what the CPC's loudest critics have to say a long time ago. Ever heard the tale of the boy who cried wolf?

Many people don't understand (5, Insightful)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388601)

Many people don't understand how serious this issue is, including many of my fellow Canucks, friends, and family.

Several of the ridings which the Harper "government" won were very closely contested and were victimized by these robocalls directing people to non-existent polling stations. Whether they were smart enough to realize it was fraud, checked it out with Elections Canada, or were actually duped by the calls is irrelevant.

It was illegal for anyone to try to interfere with the vote in this fashion. The fact that there was interference invalidates the results in the affected ridings.

That means that there are more ridings that need to be re-elected than the Harpercrites had "won" to achieve their "majority." The quotes are because the only people who believe they have a legitimate majority any more are die-hard Conservatives who refuse to accept their party was involved despite the increasing evidence that not only were they responsible, but the how of the crime is being dismantled as well by investigators.

This is a serious, serious threat to the very foundation of democracy in Canada.

If the Harper "government" is allowed to continue in power after this kind of blatant vote interference, Canada will have allowed itself to be taken over by an organization using tactics no more ethical than that of any totalitarian regime or banana republic. This is as bad as or worse than the "votes" in the Ukraine and Russia, which are perpetually questioned by the entire world.

Yet sickeningly enough, it's our own Canadian observers who are requested to go and monitor elections in countries like Ukraine and Russia and to report on them.

The Elections Canada investigation is moving along as quickly as it can. While I wish it were moving faster, my one fervent hope is that they start tagging ridings as invalid and pulling the "elected officials" from power in those ridings, regardless of who is behind the calls.

That's the key point: I don't care who is behind the calls. The identity of the person, persons, organizations, companies, foreign interests, or political parties who were behind the calls does not really matter to me all that much. What matters is that the election results in those ridings are invalid and the seat-holders can not be allowed to remain in power without a re-election in those ridings. Not if Canada is to be able to continue to claim to be a "democratic" country instead of one where electoral fraud and interference are shrugged off as being "normal."

Re:Many people don't understand (5, Interesting)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388679)

By the way, the reason I have absolute confidence that the robocalls happened is I received one.

Roughly two weeks after rudely informing the Conservative party pollster that I was deeply offended that they would even ask who I'm going to vote for (because it's an invasion of my right to a secret vote), and thereby would definitely NOT be voting Conservative, I received a robocall directing me to a supposed polling station west of the General Hospital here in Regina.

I did check into it, and did vote successfully. But that's because I was skeptical about my polling station changing two days before the election, not because someone didn't try to trick me into missing out on my chance to vote against these vote-frauding neanderthal jackboots.

I have many reasons for hating the Harpercrites, a list of issues built up over a decade. I'm actually glad they stuck their neck in the noose with the robocalls, regardless of whether it was a few party underlings or a "big plan" by the higher ups. Because the end result is the same: The Canadian Reform Alliance Party (the true roots of the Harpercrite Conservatives) may be dissolved as a party entirely, or subjected to fines so heavy that they can't afford to continue operations.

And in my books, that would be terrific for Canada. Because the Harpercrites have a long-standing tradition of fighting against the very Charter of Rights and Constitution which define the obligations of a sound a legally-moral Canadian government to the people of this country. And I do not like seeing any politician of any stripe violating those ethics, regardless of how "moral" their stance may be.

From my perspective, the history of violating the Charter should itself be sufficient justification for removing these "people" from power.

Re:Many people don't understand (1)

Solandri (704621) | more than 2 years ago | (#39390263)

informing the Conservative party pollster that I was deeply offended that they would even ask who I'm going to vote for (because it's an invasion of my right to a secret vote), and thereby would definitely NOT be voting Conservative

So you said you were offended at being asked how you were going to vote, and told him anyway? You let your emotion and righteous indignation override your sensibility, and gave him exactly the info he wanted when he called you.

The iocane powder routine from The Princess Bride only works when there's plausible deniability. You have to refuse to confirm or deny. The U.S. Navy has this policy regarding nuclear weapons carried aboard its ships - they will neither confirm nor deny if a ship carries such weapons. If they only refused to confirm which ships carried nuclear weapons, you could ask them about a bunch of ships. No nukes, no nukes, no nukes, no comment, no nukes. i.e. Same thing as a confirmation.

And with so many calls, has there been any attempt to cross-reference them with phone logs to try to figure out where the calls originated from?

Re:Many people don't understand (1)

Uberbah (647458) | more than 2 years ago | (#39390395)

So you said you were offended at being asked how you were going to vote, and told him anyway? You let your emotion and righteous indignation override your sensibility, and gave him exactly the info he wanted when he called you.

NYFB either.

Re:Many people don't understand (1)

Eric S. Smith (162) | more than 2 years ago | (#39390839)

And with so many calls, has there been any attempt to cross-reference them with phone logs to try to figure out where the calls originated from?

Oh, yes. The most hilarious detail is a burner phone registered to "Pierre Poutine, Separatist Street, Joliette Quebec." It's one of our best/worst political scandals in a generation.

Re:Many people don't understand (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 2 years ago | (#39391373)

Yup. I think if it goes much further, it will likely go over the top of the Sponsorship Scandal that ultimately destroyed the Liberals.

Stupid fucking Conservatives, they were actually gaining some momentum. They probably would still have had a majority in the last election (if somewhat slimmer), but now they're getting buried in this, and that nasty piece of work Del Mastro is making it worse every times he opens his mouth.

Re:Many people don't understand (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39391059)

There's more than two parties in Canada, so saying "I'm not voting for this one" does not equal saying "I'm voting for this other one." the way it would in the States.

Re:Many people don't understand (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39391849)

For the love of Pete man I hope you reported this to Elections Canada.

Dump Harper... (1)

eerok (1033124) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388609)

...and repeal all laws passed by the Republican, er, PC party since they came to power, and forbid them from acting in any capacity in Canadian government for the next 20 years as punishment for their gross malfeasance and betrayal of trust.

This will never happen, but one can dream.

Canada had a silent coup (4, Interesting)

Maow (620678) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388755)

Contact the Governor General [mailto] and demand he dissolves Parliament and call new elections.

These Conservatives (party of "Law & Order") have committed several counts of election fraud (In & Out and much more [sixthestate.net]).

Fascinating how they love to claim something along the lines of, "Libruls got a speeding ticket, we committed election fraud, everyone's the same". Like speeders & murderers are somehow equivalent in their law breaking.

Result of what is happening (1)

hotdot (607599) | more than 2 years ago | (#39388821)

We kind of saw it comming in Quebec, and it was one of the main reason we (and I) sacrificed the Bloc Quebecois in favour of the NPD, so we could actually have a strong government that represent the overall values of the canadian people. The result of these tactics is that separatism is now seen no more as an economic perspective than a difference in belonging. Separatist parties have seen a recent raise in interest here province-wise. As recently reported on television (Radio-Canada), it was said by journalist, that at one point in canada elections where re-done eleven times. It will be interesting to see what kind of argument Harper's party come up to put aside the law. Remember that in every other sphere of life, if you get caught cheating there are consequences. If the values put forward by this party are that they are above the law, then I guess we should do the same, remember caporal Lortie (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denis_Lortie) It can happen again !

The noose tightens on the Cons (2)

Maow (620678) | more than 2 years ago | (#39389001)

"A former chief of staff to Prime Minister Stephen Harper says last year’s election day robo-calls are of a scale he’s never seen before and warrant a “huge investigation.”

Globe & Mail [theglobeandmail.com] article about former chief of staff to Harper calling for investigation.

Don't forget, write the Governor General [mailto] and demand Parliament be dissolved until new election has been held.

FREE TO MAIL THE GOV GENERAL! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39390219)

It is FREE to send physical mail to the Governor General (and MPs!). Who knows how they weight paper vs. email, but a Canadian postmark makes it way more likely you're a citizen.

http://www.gg.ca/document.aspx?id=325 [www.gg.ca] for the address etc.

Re:The noose tightens on the Cons (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 2 years ago | (#39391391)

Yes the Governor General could, but he won't, not unless he were to be presented with a sufficiently compelling case that the calls in fact caused a completely invalid result. To invoke the Reserve Powers prematurely would only serve to bring his office and his personal judgment into question. The power to dissolve Parliament without the advice of the Prime Minister or without a vote of no confidence is there for the most extreme of circumstances, and as bad as this is, it's nowhere near that point yet, and frankly, I have my doubts it is severe enough for that to happen. Beyond that, if it is that severe, Elections Canada has the power to vacate the results in those ridings, the Tory MPs in those ridings would lose their seats, the Tories would lose their majority and I think it pretty likely that Parliament itself would solve the problem by bringing down the Government at the earliest opportunity.

National Research Council killed off (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39390163)

Building on their anti-science agenda, the Harper administration has decided to 'repurpose' the National Research Council to serve the whims of private industry in what amounts to a state sponsored capitalism scheme. NRC had been a very long standing institution in Canada dedicated to research in the pure sciences and engineering.

How do this forward thinking decision come about? The Canadian government decided to investigate why the research stimulus money given to private industry was not showing a good return. They received comments from business owners claiming that the process was too complex, lacked leadership, failed to correctly identify promising companies, etc. From that feedback, they somehow discerned that the solution must be to make NRC the lapdog of private industry. The minister of science and technology envisions "a one-stop, 1-800, 'I have a solution for your business problem' " shop. What I'd like to know is how the fuck this in any way address the original problem of businesses squandering their stimulus money?

The kicker is this - the minister claims to be following the advice of some guy who owns a business software company. How the hell is this person qualified to dictate science and engineering research policy for the country of Canada? Clearly he isn't, but when he says something that happens to align with the ideology of the current government, that's all the justification needed apparently.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/story/2012/03/06/technology-goodyear-national-research-council.html [www.cbc.ca]

Treason (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39390421)

Actively subverting a democratic process should be considered treason. It is in essence, an attempt to destroy a government, and should be treated as such. Those found guilty of such activities should be shot or jailed for life.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...