Banned on the Hill (and in Europe!)
by Franke James
Is fear of the “Dirty Oil” label behind Canada’s tarring of artist’s European show?
To see this story as a video click here…
Three questions that need to be asked:
- What about the truth? Has the Canadian government’s commitment to its policies superseded its commitment to the truth?
- What about the government’s duty to protect its citizens? Is it right for the Canadian Government to do everything it can to protect its economic interests, even if it means harming the well-being, or destroying opportunities, for some of its citizens? And if so, who decides which citizens or groups are disposable?
- What about free speech? Do these actions by the government — deliberate efforts to silence dissenting opinions about its policies — put the Canadian right to Freedom of Speech at risk?
Read the highlights or download the entire ATI release of 165 pages of documents.
Banned on the Hill Posters
Here is the artwork for the six “Dear Prime Minister” posters:
Thanks to everyone who helped bring this message to the streets of Ottawa through LoudSauce.
Victory! Banned on the Hill Opening in Ottawa
Banned on the Hill © 2011 Franke James
Photographs, illustrations and writing by Franke James, MFA;
Executive Summary ATI: Summary of key pages in the Access To Information documents.
[Full] Access To Information Document: DFAIT Internal Communications regarding Franke James
Internal Government Documents related to the cancellation of Franke’s European Tour. Released on October 31, 2011. Contains 165 pages plus cover letter. Download PDF
LoudSauce: a new way to fund media space for ideas that matter.
Dear Prime Minister: Why are you making us choose between the economy and the environment?
CARE2 PETITION: Please sign the petition for free speech for Canadian artists. Thanks to Cathryn Wellner for spearheading this!
Sign the Care2 petition
“BANNED ON THE HILL” BACKGROUND RESEARCH AND RELEVANT NEWS:
Environment Minister Peter Kent says oil sands opponents “treacherous” Reuters
“The right-of-center Conservative government was taken aback last week when the U.S. administration delayed approval of TransCanada Corp’s proposed Keystone XL pipeline… Much to Kent’s anger, two members of Parliament from the opposition New Democrats went to Washington this week to argue the pipeline should not go ahead until Canada has come up with a better plan to combat climate change.”
Diplomats should promote fossil fuels in response to criticism Financial Post
“Facing challenges about Canada’s environmental record from the foreign business community, Canadian diplomats were urged to continue touting fossil fuels in messages crafted by the Alberta government to “temper negative coverage” of the oil and gas industry, says a newly released internal government report.”
Harper Government Guts Environment Programmes
Canada’s Stephen Harper government is spending more than 60 billion dollars on new military jets and warships while slashing more than 200 million dollars in funding for research and monitoring of the environment. IPS, Stephen Leahy
Scientist surfaces to praise ozone monitoring amidst federal review
Until now, the Conservative government, facing criticism about its decision to review resources in the monitoring network, has prevented [David] Tarasick from speaking publicly about the research. Mike De Souza, Postmedia
Canada’s crude politics on oil sands
Stephen Harper’s government, allied with big oil, is lobbying Europe not to regulate tar sands oil, but the pushback has begun. Martin Lukacs, The Guardian
New documents reveal Canada’s secret ‘Oil Sands Team’ in Europe; Geoff Dembicki, The Tyee
Documents Reveal Canada’s Secret ‘Oil Sands Team’ in Europe; Emma Pullman, DeSmogBlog
VOICES-VOIX SITE: The facts: Silencing Canadian voices.
Unfortunately, in recent years, successive governments have not respected these democratic principles. Instead, Canadian organizations and individuals who disagree with the government have been attacked, muzzled, censored, marginalized, and bullied. Institutions for knowledge and research that shed critical light on the government’s actions have been abolished, sabotaged, undermined, and weakened. Voices-Voix
Fear and loathing in Ottawa Linda Diebel, Toronto Star
“I should be able to speak my mind on political issues, but I’ve found members of the Conservative party seem to be more sensitive to criticism than other parties,” she says. “They make it very personal.” Heather MacIvor, University of Windsor
Psst… Harper Wins CAJ secrecy award
“Harper’s white-knuckled death grip on public information makes this the easiest decision the cabal of judges has ever rendered,” said CAJ President Mary Agnes Welch. “He’s gone beyond merely gagging cabinet ministers and professional civil servants, stalling access to information requests and blackballing reporters who ask tough questions. He has built a pervasive government apparatus whose sole purpose is to strangle the flow of public information.” Canadian Assoc of Journalists
One Department/One Voice: Environment Canada’s shift in 2007 to “one department, one voice” which restricts access to scientists by the media. (See report below which states that the protocol has resulted in an 80% drop in Climate Change science coverage in the media.)
Troubling Evidence: The Harper Government’s Approach to Climate Science Research in Canada
This report documents a troubling catalogue of actions by the present federal government that undermine Canadian climate science research and its practitioners… Environment Canada has adopted a new media relations policy that makes it much more difficult for journalists to have direct access to government scientists. Climate Action Network
Harper’s Humiliating Muzzle on Scientists: Canada is becoming a global joke as our world-class experts are prohibited from speaking. The scandal is growing at Environment Canada of how Canadian climate researchers are being “muzzled” by draconian policies of Prime Minister Stephen Harper. The Tyee
Critics label Harper’s growing ‘black list’ a threat to democracy; Mark Kennedy, Postmedia
Stephen Harper’s Hitlist
Power, process and the assault on democracy; By Murray Dobbin, Council of Canadians
Banned on the Hill © 2011 Franke James
All photos and illustrations by Franke James except as noted: istockphoto © photo of Bird in “Do-Not-Call-List”, © modified heads in “Common Concerns”; Getty Images © cockroach; Icon photos of funders are © each individual funder.
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