Tuesday, December 06, 2022

Today's News: What we learned

This weekend there was a fascinating article in the Globe and Mail summarizing what was learned from the Emergencies Act testimony at the POEC. Here are some revelations of note: 

Convoy leaders egged on the protestors but did not risk their own trucks:
...only through the inquiry did the public learn that while the leaders encouraged others to put their trucks – and therefore their livelihoods – on the line, most of the convoy leaders did not. Mr. Barber removed his truck, ‘Big Red,’ from the “red zone” after the second weekend. Mr. King left his motorhome in a “secure location” and hitched a ride downtown. Ms. Belton left her big rig at home, as did Mr. Dichter.
Stephanie Carvin, an associate professor at Carleton University and a former federal intelligence analyst, said the convoy leaders have shown – at the protests and in the inquiry – that “they see reality entirely differently.”
“They’re not delusional,” she said, but added, “I’m not sure anything would have convinced them that they were causing harm.”
Ottawa police failed:
...In an emergency situation, a police services board and a police chief are the only ones that can ask the OPP to take over when a police force is not providing “adequate and effective” policing, Prof. Kempa said. Mr. Sloly’s senior commanders believed he thought that other police services coming to Ottawa to help craft an enforcement plan illustrated a plot against him, the inquiry has heard.
Police stood by as protesters formed supply lines of fuel-filled jerry cans and indiscriminately set off fireworks near condos and office buildings. Yet Mr. Sloly testified that the chaos never met the threshold where he should have relinquished command. And then-Ottawa police board chair Diane Deans testified that she couldn’t recall if the board ever considered making a request to the OPP.
The chaos should have triggered an automatic threshold for the OPP to take control, but no such mechanism exists, Prof. Kempa said.
The Ontario government failed:
...the Emergencies Act assumes all parties do their jobs, as expected, not that the Ottawa police would be “dysfunctional” or that Mr. Ford would decide “he didn’t want to get involved and kick it up to the federal government.”
“It assumed that the Ontario government would be working and solving this and it wasn’t. So what do you do?” she said.
And Canadian intelligence agencies weren't as helpful as they could have been:
...The inquiry has heard that the protests in Ottawa and elsewhere did not rise to the level of a national-security threat, under the CSIS Act. Yet CSIS director David Vigneault testified that he recommended the act’s invocation – after receiving a legal opinion from the Justice Department that the Emergencies Act could take a broader interpretation than the CSIS Act.
On Feb. 14, about an hour before the act’s invocation was announced, Mr. Trudeau received a memo from Canada’s top public servant recommending the act’s use. A detailed threat assessment was meant to follow “under separate cover,” but it did not. Jody Thomas, national security and intelligence adviser, had sought that threat assessment earlier that day but she testified that it “fell through the cracks and we were overtaken by events.”
I'm not sure what the POEC will make of all this, except perhaps to conclude that Mulroney and Beatty were maybe indulging in a bit of wishful thinking back in 1987 when they thought the process of declaring a state of emergency would be polite, orderly, and unencumbered by bureaucratic incompetence at several levels.

Finally, from the department of "It's about time!"
Our health care system is in serious trouble due to the combination of Covid, flu and RSV, and its the children that are taking the hit now. Its a worldwide issue:

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

So let me get this straight... The majority of Canadians agree that Trudeau was right to invoke the EA to kick an unruly bunch of anti-vaxxers out of Ottawa. Almost half of Canadians have a bad impression of these anti-vaxxers. Yet they succeeded in totally eliminating public health measures against Covid, even in Ontario where Ford has a majority and isn't looking at an election for another four years. As the healthcare system nears collapse due to rising case numbers, mask up and jab up folks, we're on our own because our leaders don't GAF about public health.