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muzzling scientists

While it takes time for a new prime minister to translate campaign rhetoric into effective policies, there are at least five quick-wins that Justin Trudeau can achieve on his very first day in office. All five can be implemented in a few minutes through simple orders-in-council at the cabinet table or by instructing new ministers in their mandate letters. Implementing the full range of changes promised in this last election campaign will take a long time, probably many years. Quick-wins will be important for Trudeau to show Canadians that his Liberal government can bring about the breadth and depth of change for which he was given a majority.
The Alberta battleground riding of Edmonton-Mill Woods became one of only two ridings in the city and one of only four ridings in the province to go Liberal. For the first time in a decade, Edmonton-Mill Woods is not a Conservative domain. This is only one example of a larger trend across Canada.
With news of several governmental libraries being closed, and their contents being destroyed without first being digitized for archiving, many Canadians, especially in the scientific community, are wondering what these ominous acts could say about the Harper administration. The word 'Orwellian' comes to mind.
It's sad to see so much of our media and governance in such a sorry state that we can't even expect rational discussion of critical issues such as climate change and energy policy. The science is clear that it is real and that we are a major contributor, mainly through burning fossil fuels and cutting down forests.
By choosing to shift towards industry-driven applied research at the expense of scientist-driven basic research, the Conservatives continue to undermine scientific progress - and these policies will adversely impact all of us, including the very industry they purport to be servicing.
On April 25, 2013, renowned scientist Dr. David Suzuki attended the WFCU Centre to empower the crowd with his Wake Up Canada call. It's a campaign organized by the Canadian Youth Climate Coalition to support a day of action, encouraging kids to advocate for their environmental future through the very media that overlooked them this time around.
The Harper government’s iron grip on communications has been acutely felt in federal agencies and departments that engage
Editor's note: The following piece was published in the CJFE’s 2013 Review of Free Expression in Canada. AS AN OTTAWA-BASED
The often antagonistic relationship between the governing Conservatives and Canada’s scientific community turned acrimonious