John Dupuis of York University, writes at Confessions of a Science Librarian. Beginning in May of 2013 and updating several times since, he has been tracking the ways in which the current Canadian government has been attacking science and scientists.
That particular post, The Canadian War on Science: A long, unexaggerated, devastating chronological indictment has been accessed over 50,000 times and deserves many more views. He is planning an update in the near future so keep an eye on his site.
To begin 2014, he takes a look at Science Policy Advocacy that has been happening in Canada over the past 12 months.
- Allan Gregg’s 2012 article 1984 in 2012 – The Assault on Reason sets the stage.
- Rick Mercer for telling the government to stop muzzling scientists. (And other rants too)
- Democracy Watch for telling the government to stop muzzling scientists. And documenting it too.
- The Information Commissioner for investigating the government muzzling scientists.
- Margrit Eichler and Scientists for the Right to Know for their event-based advocacy includingthis debate and this panel discussion.
- The unmuzzledscience: Musings of A Canadian government scientist from behind the muzzleblog
- The Canadian Science Writers’ Association’s Let Canada’s Scientists Speak campaign
- The Canadian Association of University Teachers Get Science Right! campaign and events.
- The SavePEARL campaign.
- Katie Gibbs and Evidence for Democracy‘s Science Uncensored campaign and Stand Up for Science and Death of Evidence rallies.
- Kennedy Stewart of the Federal NDP for parliamentary motions on public science, un-muzzling scientists and creating a science adviser.
- Diane Orihel and Save ELA for advocating for the Experimental Lakes Area in 2012 and 2013.
- David Schindler advocating for the ELA on CBC’s As it Happens.
- The Canadian Science Policy Conference for creating a place to talk.
- Stephen Bede Scharper for writing in the Toronto Star about government policies and the environment, like here and here.
- The amazing work of journalists such as Mike DeSouza and Margaret Munro, chasing down every leak, story and detail. Even Paul Wells.
- David Suzuki for the Science Matters column, among many other things.
- ROM Contemporary Culture and Carbon 14: Climate is Culture for The Trial of David Suzuki.
- Sarah Boon for organizing the iPolitics series on Canadian science policy with a group of amazing contributors.
- Huffington Post Canada with their extended Stifling Science series.
- Coverage at Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, Rabble.ca and elsewhere.
- Elizabeth May goes to Warsaw climate summit conference as delegate for Afghanistan to draw attention to Canada’s climate record. (More info here and here)
- Even the Guardian (and here) and the New York Times notice what’s going on here. Natureand Science too. The Economist doesn’t think Canada is cool anymore either and neither doesForeign Policy who use the term “rogue petrostate.”
- Chris Turner‘s The War on Science: Muzzled Scientists and Wilful Blindness in Stephen Harper’s Canada book and accompanying extensive list of book tour events.
- The Agenda on TVO for their debate Silencing Scientists.
- The Terry Project on Silencing the Scientists
- The Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada for surveying government scientistsabout being muzzled — and finding a lot of fear and silencing.
- The Tri-Agencies for their Draft Open Access Policy.
- Stephen Strauss for a nice year-end summary.
- The CBC’s Fifth Estate is kicking off 2014 with a story on silencing scientists.
Any individual following these issues may agree with the government on certain policies, and that’s fair. However, as the list grows longer and the damage goes deeper, it becomes more obvious this is a long term plan for a government with a strong dislike for research.
If indeed the term war is appropriate, it is a more of a siege where science is being starved to death.