31 March 2006

How 'bout a Whole Gulag?

Funny story over at the blog that calls itself a newspaper - the Globe and Mail: Seems that Conservative MP Colin Myers took advantage of the boss taking his duct tape with him to Mexico to say "boy, would the public get accurate and true information if a few reporters were hauled away to jail!" Perhaps said partly in jest - the command of hyperbole being an asset to get the attention of the newsmedia - the backbencher's comments reveal a profoundly disturbing - and consistent - attitude that seems to be emerging in patterns of behaviour from the new government with respect to overarching and total control.

While those in political power must have a vision, the reality of contemporary life is that the blind imposition of that power is no longer appropriate - indeed if it was every appropriate - in a world that is increasingly enabled for mass participation. More voices can be heard, and should be heard - not fewer. More aspects of stories can emerge, and should emerge. If a substantial number of those willing to participate in the ongoing conversation that defines contemporary democracy observe things that those in power would call "twisted" or "fabricated" then what we need are even more people having a close look.

What we don't need is those in power deciding what should be discussed among the public, especially if it is critical of those in power. There are plenty of places in the world where that is, sadly, the only option.
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