How Evidence Died

Democracy depends on informed opinion. Informed opinion relies on understanding all the evidence, not just that which supports a political objective or ideology. Science provides much of the best evidence, without regard to political agendas or ideology.

The only scientific evidence the Mr. Harper wants the public to know about is that which supports his political objectives and ideology. That’s not science, that’s propaganda.

The Harper government has embarked on a systematic program to impede and divert the flow of scientific information to Canadians through two major strategies. The first involves the gutting of programs and institutions whose principal mandate is the collection of scientific evidence. Examples of this include:

  • Cutting the mandatory long-form national census.
  • Major budget reductions to research programs at Environment Canada, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Library and Archives Canada, the National Research Council Canada, Statistics Canada, and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada.
  • Decisions to close major natural and social science research institutions such as the world-renowned Experimental Lakes Area, the National Council of Welfare and the First Nations Statistical Institute.
  • Closing of The Polar Environment Atmospheric Research Laboratory (PEARL) in Eureka, Nunavut

Mr. Harper’s second strategy is perhaps less overt, but even more insidious: to impede the bringing forward of scientific evidence into the public debate. Examples:

  • Not renewing the The National Science Advisor in 2008.
  • Dozens of instances of censoring of, impeded access to, and coercion of government scientists, a practice which Minister of Environment Peter Kent has justified as merely in keeping with “established practice”.
  • Shutting down the National Round Table on Environment and Economy (NRTEE), an arm’s length advisory body providing independent advice on environmental protection and economic development, because the government didn’t like its advice.

DoE In the News

A categorized list of media articles is now available.

1984 in 2012 – The Assault on Reason

Notes for Remarks to Carleton University – September 5, 2012
By Allan R. Gregg

Background Articles

Budget Omnibus Bill C-38 criticism
Canadian Environmental Assessment Act changes in C-38
ELA - Experimental Lakes Area closure
Fisheries Act gutted
Health-Refugees
PEARL - Polar Environment Atmospheric Research Lab closure
Science-Evidence-Access to Information-General
Stats Canada - Long Form Census
En français
  • 13 juin 2012 -
Other Articles