This would be funny if it wasn’t so ridiculous. China is trying to take the high ground when it comes to respecting the rights of its citizens. Trudeau is also being mocked for freezing the accounts of his political opponents, while he pretends to be an advocate for democracy. After all, Trudeau is well known for his love of China’s basic dictatorship.
Okay, there’s more to the article than just that.
As for an update on the so-called national emergency:
There’s something pretty screwy about this: one human rights abuser mocking another. Nevertheless, China has (rightly) called out the hypocrisy of the Trudeau Government pretending to care about freedom abroad, while squashing dissent locally. Surely, most people will remember this clip from November 2013.
In fact, this is a pretty common pattern of politicians in Canada and elsewhere: condemn human rights abuses in other countries, while turning a blind eye to it within their own borders. Talking about Ukraine serves as a great way to divert attention from problems in Canada.
As for the freezing of bank accounts, this was the subject of a hearing. Watching the entire hearing for more context and information.
There was an entertaining piece at 15:38:30, when the $10.5 million settlement to Omar Khadr was brought up. His human rights mattered, although apparently not those of actual Canadians.
At 16:37:30, there was a reference (from a Liberal MP) to a Globe & Mail article stating that donors were not impacted, and the RCMP denied providing a list of names. However, the RCMP does admit that it provided financial institutions with a list of suspected influencers, vehicles and drivers.
The MP brings up Chrystia Freeland’s declaration giving the police more authority to track finances. Also, the financial reporting requirements of crowdfunding sources is designed to be permanent. There is a lot of hair splitting: while the Government itself may not be collecting data, it’s making it easier (and requiring) banks to do it. It’s also much simpler for the RCMP to obtain financial information.
There was a Parliamentary hearing on the issues of suspending insurance, and freezing bank accounts. However, it seems to be pretty subjective as to what would be considering supporting, or how much discretion banks or insurance companies would have.
It’s also unclear how long this will continue in the future.
For all the talk about the protections of the Canadian Charter, it’s a pretty useless document. Section 1 allows for almost unlimited suspensions of rights, as long as it’s declared to be for a public good. Think about it: the Emergencies Act is held in check by the Charter, but Charter rights can be suspended in the name of an emergency. Sounds like circular logic.
While the hearings try to play this down (freezing bank accounts and insurance), it does raise a precedent where the Government could simply ban large gatherings under the pretense that they were unlawful and a threat to society. Declaring people “designated persons” is would be a way to do it. In short, these “limited” measures could be applied more broadly than originally claimed.
An interesting side note: the Canadian Parliament is also holding hearings on gun control, street gangs, and the spread of illicit firearms. A cynic may wonder if there will be an attempt to link Ottawa protesters to gun smuggling over this.
Ottawa has also been holding hearings since February 10th on the topic of crowdfunding, and financing extremism. Far from just declaring a national emergency, this has been in the works for several days, at least. Transcripts and video are available.
At the time of writing: the legislation to invoke a national emergency has passed the House of Commons (with the NDP supporting the Liberals), and is moving to the Senate.
(7) Wayback Machine
(14) Emergencies Act Protesting Regulations