Saturday, February 12, 2011

Who Is Behind The Amir Attaran/Errol Mendes FOI Requests?

Probably not the government. I have to disagree with the Dawg and Imp and the professors themselves on this one. More likely one of the eager volunteer witch-hunters Dawg makes note of. FOI laws have evolved and been liberalised in recent years, in Canada and a number of other countries. One result has been that activists on the Right--primarily--have found in these laws a useful means of harassing political opponents. The prime example is the use of UK FOI laws by climate change denialist Steve McIntyre and his acolytes at Climate Audit to, basically, launch a DOS attack on the scientists at CRU in East Anglia.

But it doesn't take a government actor to launch one of these crusades. Any fool can do it. I suspect that in this case it is some fool that has.


KNB said...

You're right of course, it doesn't take a government to do this, but I can't rule it out.

This is a group who targets their perceived enemies, specifically those who have success in disrupting their narrative.

Additionally, they are known to play within the rules, while pushing those boundaries. Given what was asked for, this kind fits neatly in that box.

You could argue it was someone not savvy enough to know what info could be asked for, but it doesn't feel like that to me.

I guess we wait to see what develops.

CanadianSense said...

My guess in Sun News Brian Lilley who has been taking on the lefties including the CBC.

I have NO proof of course, just guessing like everyone else.

WILLY said...

I agree the PMO does not have to get their hands dirty by these harassment techniques, they only have to pick the targets with their double-speak pronouncements.

ridenrain said...

No wonder folks don’t turn to the media for news any more. There`s no shred of proof behind this but the headline screams political smear job.

Orwell's Bastard said...

Thing is, it takes a lot of energy and commitment and resources to do something this comprehensive. How many Volunteer Attack Monkeys (TM) have that much time and money on their hands?

thebanana said...

Good question, OB. Perhaps ridenhard and Cdn-nonsense could answer it?

ridenrain said...

The CBC keeps getting hundreds of FOI requests too. Those must be from the PMO also, eh?
As long as your friendly media hacks can write a juicy headline that backs your party line, it’s good journalism.

ajlm said...


It is not a lone wolf. It is from one who is part of a pack of soon to be launched McCarthyists who will turn their attention to everybody who in anyway criticises the Reform/Alliance (not real Conservatives) regime.