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WITH HARPERíS MUZZLE ON HIS MPíS THERE IS LITTLE FREE SPEECH

Putting muzzles on our elected members of parliament and at the same time stifling the press and our right to know makes me angry and scares the hell out of me.

The Globe & Mail reported the details of a recently sent email to bureaucrats outlining the governments rigid communication strategy. "PMO (Prime Ministerís Office) will have final approval for all communication products - even notes to or letters to the Editors."

Bureaucrats were told to reduce the amount of ministerial and public events that take away from the governmentís priorities outlined during the election campaign. The PMO must approve ALL ministerial events. What happened to Harperís promise of an open, transparent, accountable government?

In fact the members of parliament/military brass will not be allowed to express their opinions. If one dares to trespass party line dictum then you could be embarrassed/ punished.

Prime Minister Harperís philosophy is to run a very central based control agenda with a total of eight members at the hub in the PMOís office. The rest of us are mere spokes in the wheels of government.

One of my favorite librarians, Liz, was very kind to email me the quotes of Garth Turner, who was an elected Conservative member of parliament representing the riding of Halton, Ontario.

You may remember that Garth suggested in his blog that MP David Emerson should resign his seat and run in a byelection in Vancouver. David, a former columnist, has realized that his career options with the Conservative caucus were seriously limited. He had very unhappy meeting with Stephen Harper and was told that his comments were deemed not helpful.

He expects to be assigned an office in a renovated washroom somewhere in a forgotten corner of a vermin- infested dank basement.

I would have liked to have been a fly-on-the wall when Harper called in Belinda Stronach to lay down the law. The daughter of Frank Stronach founder and president of the billion dollar Magna International was not going to cow tow to Harper. She crossed the floor in the House of Commons to be a part of Paul Martinís Liberal party.

Reminds me of the story of a constituent while walking down Richmond Row who passed over an open manhole. Strange, there were voices emanating from the sewer. The civil servants in their four piece suits were up to their chins in excrement. Please donít make waves they moaned or their will be consequences.

We should all have grave reservations regarding the new dictatorial protocol that restricts the media/members of parliaments right to access of information from the PMOís office All enquiries now have to be submitted in writing before pertinent information will be disclosed.

There are two tenants that I hold dear: freedom of speech for all including our elected members of parliament and a free pressís right to better inform their readers of matters of concern.

The freedom to ask a question by the members of parliament in the House of Commons by Conservative member is muzzled by Harper and select members of his PMO, Please take a moment to send an mail to your member of parliament to voice your concerns.

Len Lesser

Len Lesser posts a report every week

You can email Len at lenlesser@hotmail.com