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Saturday, January 03, 2009

Western Standard’s “Liberty 100” Top 75 for 2008

To recognize the work of Canadians who have advanced economic and personal liberty in 2008, the Western Standard has produced “Liberty 100,” a list of the top 100 friends of liberty in Canada.

You can find the Top 10 from the “Liberty 100” here. Ezra Levant was our #1 pick for his work in defence of freedom of speech and expression.

The Top 25 from the “Liberty 100” can be found here. It’s a diverse collection of people, and, while not all of them are libertarians, they have all helped to resist the growth of government in some way.

The Top 50 from the “Liberty 100” found here looks a lot like the Top 10 and the Top 25. It’s a list of advocates, think-tankers, journalists, partisans – the usual suspects. However, it might surprise some to see civil libertarian David Eby on the list, and drug policy reformers like Marc Emery, Dennis Young and Krista Zoobkoff -- but there are many good conservative reasons to oppose the war on drugs including public health, concerns with child sexual exploitation, the misallocation of policing resources and the growing abuse of asset forfeiture laws.

With that in mind, readers should not be surprise to see Bruce Alexander with the Canadian Foundation for Drug Policy on the Top 75 list in the #55 spot.

Liberal MP Keith Martin made the list for his opposition to Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act, and so did blogger Kathy Shaidle for the same reason.

Here’s the “Liberty 100” Top 75 (51-75) for 2008:

51. Kevin Gaudet
Canadian Taxpayers Federation

Kevin Gaudet is the Ontario director of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation.

52. Maureen Bader
Canadian Taxpayers Federation

Maureen Bader is the B.C. Director of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation.

53. Colin Craig
Canadian Taxpayers Federation

Colin Craig is the Manitoba director of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation.

54. Will Wilkinson
Cato Institute

Will Wilkinson is a research fellow with the Cato Institute working on a wide range of issues from the moral dimensions of Social Security reform to the policy implications of the psychology of happiness.

55. Bruce Alexander
Canadian Foundation for Drug Policy

Bruce Alexander is a founding member of the Canadian Foundation for Drug Policy.

56. Robert Jago
A dime a dozen political blog

Robert Jago is a Vancouver born and raised "American Indian" who blogs at the Western Standard and on his own "Dime a dozen political blog."

57. Lindy Vopnfjord
Major Maker

Lindy Vopnfjord is an acclaimed singer-songwriter and lead singer of Major Maker. He is also a libertarian who takes time out of his busy schedule to perform every year at the Liberty Summer Seminar.

58. Jacob Levy
McGill University

Jacob Levy is associate professor of political science at McGill University.

59. Janet Ajzenstat
McMaster University

Dr. Janet Ajzenstat is the author of The Canadian Founding: John Locke and Parliament (2007) and The Once and Future Canadian Democracy: An Essay in Political Thought (2003) in which she argues that Canada’s founders were proponents of the classical liberal ideals of philosopher John Locke.

60. Andre Arthur
Member of Parliament 

André Arthur is an independent, libertarian-minded Member of Parliament for Portneuf--Jacques--Cartier.

61. Keith Martin
Member of Parliament

Keith Martin is a Liberal Member of Parliament who distinguished himself in 2008 with his opposition to Section 13 of the CHRA.

62. George Dance
Ontario Libertarian Party

George Dance is a director with the Ontario Libertarian Party and a columnist for Nolan Chart.

63. Randy Hillier
Ontario PC MPP 

Randy Hillier is an Ontario PC MPP and a property rights advocate.

64. Paul Geddes
Libertarian Party

Paul Geddes is a director and candidate for the Libertarian Party.

65. Kathy Shaidle
Five feet of fury blog

Kathy Shaidle is a free speech blogger and author of "The Tyranny of Nice."

66. Moin Yahya
University of Alberta

Dr. Moin Yahya is an assistant professor of law at the University of Alberta and a director with the Canadian Constitution Foundation. Yahya also blogs for the Western Standard.

67. Glenn Fox
University of Guelph

Glenn Fox is a free market agricultural and natural resource economist and professor of Agricultural Economics at the University of Guelph.

68. Pierre Desrochers
University of Toronto

Pierre Desrochers is an associate professor of geography at the University of Toronto.

69. Troy Lanigan 
Canadian Taxpayers Federation

Troy Lanigan is the national communications director of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation.

70. Paul Hinman 
Wildrose Alliance Politics

Paul Hinman is leader of the free market-oriented Wildrose Alliance party in Alberta.

71. Barbara Branden

Barbara Branden is the Winnipeg-born author of “The Passion of Ayn Rand.”

72. Jason Clemens
Fraser Institute

Jason Clemens is a senior fellow with the Fraser Institute and director of research and strategic development at the San Francisco-based Pacific Research Institute.

73. Mary Lou Gutscher

Mary Lou Gutscher is a past president of the Freedom Party of Ontario and has been active with the International Society for Individual Liberty.

74. Peter Cowley
Fraser Institute

Peter Cowley is the director of School Performance Studies at the Fraser Institute.

75. Michael Wagner

Dr. Michael Wagner is a home schooler and author of "Standing on Guard for Thee," a history of the Canadian social conservative movement.

Congratulations to the Top 75 of the “Liberty 100.” Stay tuned for the final 25.

Posted by Matthew Johnston

Posted by westernstandard on January 3, 2009 | Permalink


20 of the "Top 75 of the “Liberty 100" are either with the Fraser Institute or the Canadian Taxpayers Federation. Are you filling up your "Top 100" list with names you got from each outfits telephone directory?

49. Scott Hennig
Canadian Taxpayers Federation

50. Lee Harding
Canadian Taxpayers Federation

51. Kevin Gaudet
Canadian Taxpayers Federation

52. Maureen Bader
Canadian Taxpayers Federation

53. Colin Craig
Canadian Taxpayers Federation

69. Troy Lanigan
Canadian Taxpayers Federation

2. Michael Walker
Fraser Institute

4. Mark Mullins
Fraser Institute

32. Nadeem Esmail
Fraser Institute

33. Fred McMahon
Fraser Institute

34. Niels Veldhuis
Fraser Institute

35. Gerry Angevine
Fraser Institute

36. Lisa-Diane Fortier
Fraser Institute

37. Diane Katz
Fraser Institute

38. Brett Skinner
Fraser Institute

39. Michael Thomas
Fraser Institute

41. Raeann English
Fraser Institute

42. Dean Pelkey
Fraser Institute

72. Jason Clemens
Fraser Institute

74. Peter Cowley
Fraser Institute

Posted by: The Stig | 2009-01-03 8:49:31 PM

Is there not a single person on this list that actually works for a living ?? Why not just say "everyone at the Fraser institute and the Canadian taxpayers federation".

Posted by: peterj | 2009-01-03 10:48:24 PM

Well, everyone at the CTF and Fraser Institute deserves to be recognized.

Posted by: Matthew Johnston | 2009-01-04 12:59:08 AM

Now, for a sneak preview of some of the rest of the list, which has been leaked by an annonymous insider....

76. Fred Lewis
Canadian Taxpayers Federation

Fred Lewis works in the mail room. If you sent an envelope to the CTF, Fred probably opened it. If you sent a package to the CTF, Fred probably walked it to the right office.

77. Billy Jones
Fraser Institute

Billy Jones is the 10-year-old son of a Fraser Institute staffer. Billy has a lemonade stand in the summer and refuses to file an income tax form because, as he says, "taxes are gay".

78. Matthew Johnson
Western Standard

Matthew Johnson is not only the only WS person yet to be named on the list, but he is responsible for creating this list. For putting together such a good list, Matthew believes he has contributed to liberty, and thus should be honoured.

79. Mr. Whiskers

Mr. Whiskers is 10-year-old Billy Jones' cat. Billy says that Mr. Whiskers is untrainable and never listens to any authority figure. Mr. Whiskers also is fierce about marking his property and defending it from intrusions of other cats, using his claws for self-defence when he needs to.

80. Randy "Light Fingers" Wilson.
Kingston Penitentiary

Randy is doing time for a variety of offences, mostly the attempt to "liberate" cattle from their "captors". Says Randy, "the cows speak to me. They tell me they want to be free and I cannot resist helping them."

... more to come ....

Posted by: Fact Check | 2009-01-04 6:22:03 AM

I will not be deterred by the haters until everyone who toils for liberty is recognized, including the irrepressible Mr. Whiskers.

Posted by: Matthew Johnston | 2009-01-04 7:47:39 AM

How come there aren't more social conservatives on this list?


Posted by: Deborah Gyapong | 2009-01-04 11:44:18 AM

I will not be deterred by the haters :

Where did you come up with that one? These are probably all very worthy nominees, including the ones from Fact Check. All I am questioning is the VERY narrow selection base you chose.

Posted by: peterj | 2009-01-04 1:35:31 PM

Mr. Whiskers?

What do you mean by "narrow," Peter? I tried to cast a wide net.

Posted by: Matthew Johnston | 2009-01-04 1:47:52 PM

Deborah Gyapong: "How come there aren't more social conservatives on this list?"

It looks to me like a Libertarian list rather than a Conservative list.

Posted by: passerby | 2009-01-04 1:53:26 PM

I agree with Deborah, not one social conservative that I can see-just Libertarians and fis-cons. Life's about more than tax codes and budgets. Not one pro-life or pro-family entry? I'd suggest Brian Rushfeldt or Tristan Emmanuel!

Posted by: Lissa | 2009-01-04 5:43:16 PM

Where are the Fournier's of FreeDominion.ca in this list? They walk the talk.

Posted by: Stilltellingitlikeitis | 2009-01-04 6:55:29 PM

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