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Monday, June 22, 2009

Jennifer Lynch may have a file on you

As revealed in The National Post, Jennifer Lynch, head of the CHRC, has been keeping a massive file on bloggers who criticize the Commission.

Who knows what's in that file? Lynch is quoted as saying she has "1,200" entries. Maybe I'm in there. Maybe you are, too, especially if you blog or comment under your real name.

Taking a suggestion from Jay Currie and Blazing Cat Fur, perhaps it's time to find out what's contained in the file Lynch keeps on her most impudent critics. Five bucks and this form will start you on your way to an Access to Information request.

I'm not going to argue with Dawg, who claims it is standard practice for government agencies to keep tabs on their media critics. Maybe it is. But the CHRC is a particularly contemptible branch of the government; burying it under a mountain of paperwork seems the least we can do.

Besides, Lynch and her merry band of censors could use a distraction. From what I hear, the trouncing they're getting from people like Erza has them all feeling a little under the weather. With few friends left, a flurry of information requests might make those at the CHRC feel wanted again.

And it's nice to feel wanted, isn't it?

UPDATE:

Jay also suggests that Lynch's file may violate the Privacy Act.

UPDATE2:

Thinking about it, there's something slightly more disconcerting about the CHRC keeping files on its critics than, say, someone at the Food and Drug Administration in the United States. In Lynch's case, the same people keeping the files will be the ones investigating hate speech complaints. Compare that to an equivalent case with the FDA: when a prominent anti-drug law libertarian denounces the FDA's classification of marijuana as a Section 1 drug, perhaps the FDA makes a note in a file. But big deal. It's not the FDA that investigates and prosecutes people for drug offenses, and so at least an illusion of impartiality can be maintained.

Not so with the CHRC. The very people keeping tabs on their critics will be assessing and investigating complaints made, possibly complaints about those very critics. I wouldn't want to bet that I'd get fair consideration under those circumstances. Would you?

Posted by Terrence Watson on June 22, 2009 in Freedom of expression | Permalink

Comments

Perhaps she thinks she is in N. Korea, China or Cuba, for in those countries it is common practice. As for Dawg's claim, it is rubbish as usual. It most certainly is NOT common practice for federal bureaucrats to establish and maintain secret files on citizens who criticise them. There seems to be no limit to which he and his fellow travellers will stoop to defend state tyranny, especially when it pertains to the HRCs.

Posted by: Alain | 2009-06-22 7:41:45 PM


Shall she be called J. Edgar Lynch? Or the CHRC "The Stasi"? Stick that in your file, Easterner! Free Alberta!

Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2009-06-22 7:54:06 PM


Zeb,

Ha, I think Jay is comparing the CHRC to the Stasi. J. Edgar Lynch is pretty good, though -- may have to steal it at some point!

Posted by: Terrence Watson | 2009-06-22 7:56:28 PM


I've got five bucks and a desire to check this out.

I will file a request tomorrow.

Posted by: P.M. Jaworski | 2009-06-22 7:56:42 PM


Jaws,

Awesome. I bet Lynch's entry on you runs something like this:

"Lynch: Jaws looks something like a hippy, which is why I thought he would support me and my quest to destroy all hate on the Internets. But he turned out to be a libertarian and broke my heart. The bastard."

Heh, someone should start a game about this... guess what your entry in Comrade Lynch's file looks like!

Posted by: Terrence Watson | 2009-06-22 8:00:10 PM


I would play your game, Terrence, but you seem to have beat me to the punch.

I actually doubt there's anything about me in there. However, I'm pretty sure that whoever is on that list would really like to see it. I hope I can get it and publish it. I might have to file a bunch of these (it's worth doing, just to figure out how these Access to Information files work).

Posted by: P.M. Jaworski | 2009-06-22 8:05:31 PM


"Terrence Watson has written long screeds condemning our practices, often citing J.S. Mill (who isn't an authority on anything cuz there was lots of racism when he lived.) He can be killed using silver bullets; or, failing that, a sharp rock."

Or:

"Matthew J. runs something called 'the Shotgun', which we at the CHRC think may be a biker gang. The evil Ezra Levant used to run with the Shotgun gang, terrorizing lawyers and their young sycophants with silly cartoons. We hates them all, yes we do! Ssss! *gollum, gollum*"

Posted by: Terrence Watson | 2009-06-22 8:06:06 PM


Unless she can make a case that the CHRC is an identifiable group as defined under the human rights legislation, all that list will be useful for is to prove how unpopular she and her commission are. I say let her hoard such things. Ultimately it may push her over the edge into full-blown paranoid delusions and result in her removal.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2009-06-22 8:35:16 PM


Any aspect of government that has to hide its actions is automatically contemptible.

Posted by: The original JC | 2009-06-22 8:52:22 PM


Everyone should see the 2007 German film "The Lives of Others" to see what the Stasi was all about. Marvelous film.

Posted by: Zebulon Pike | 2009-06-22 8:54:51 PM


"Any aspect of government that has to hide its actions is automatically contemptible."

I totally agree, JC.

(I just wanted to publicly nod my head in agreement.)

Posted by: P.M. Jaworski | 2009-06-22 9:09:43 PM


jenny Lynch- a huge so what?
she can run her office her way and i will run mine my way..
She might be busy picking drapes for the Museum of Human Rights VIP meeting rooms and won;'t likely get around to making many Inquisition files on a bunch of blogger retards

even if she does track her critics , so what ? she is free to do this.as long as she dies her job of protecting human rights from.. non humans or whatever animal is attacking them.
Comtemptable // comschmemptable, big deal ..


Posted by: 419 | 2009-06-22 9:19:30 PM


I think Ms. Lynch is that rare combination of beauty,brains and charisma. JL.I love you,and those wonderful people that you work with,may all the gods smile upon you.........(:-)

Posted by: wallyj | 2009-06-22 10:04:22 PM


Wallyj,
I'm glad I'm not the only one who finds her attractive, if a little creepy somehow. She's intelligent, clearly, which is always a nice trait. I mean, other than the ethical shortcomings, desire for ocial engineering and apparent ideological bigotry... somehow beautiful.

What? Why are you looking at me like that?

Posted by: Timothy | 2009-06-22 10:10:36 PM


Timothy,

Maybe if she was carrying a riding crop...

Oh dear, I've said too much.

Posted by: Terrence Watson | 2009-06-22 10:18:08 PM


It would fit, though, wouldn't it? Riding crop, fake Nazi uniform...

Hmm!

Posted by: Terrence Watson | 2009-06-22 10:20:28 PM


Hey, is that blonde cutie wearing braces in her official pic

http://a123.g.akamai.net/f/123/12465/1d/www.nationalpost.com/news/1720605.bin?size=404x272

Riding crop, braces, blonde, QC...hot or not, you decide.

Posted by: Super-Dooper-Whooper-Secret-Guy | 2009-06-23 12:21:45 AM


Well, all kidding aside 1200 files is a lot of files.

Now most major departments in the NCR use "Press Clipping" service(s) thus will be interesting to find out what "search terms"/parameters they requested.

Might even be more interesting as to what firm they use, it's employees and how much they paid. Suspect it is on their "Website" as to list of Contracts Awarded.

Hope they are getting "Value for Money" but then they don't have a Performance and Accountability Unit doe they :)

Hello Joe McCarthy and Roy Kohn - come back - "All is Forgiven".

Posted by: The LS from Sk | 2009-06-23 6:25:21 AM


(I just wanted to publicly nod my head in agreement.)

Posted by: P.M. Jaworski | 2009-06-22 9:09:43 PM

Thanks Peter. Looking forward to meeting you again one of these days.

Posted by: The original JC | 2009-06-23 10:40:23 PM


Over at Blazing Cat Fur they've started a T-shirt slogan contest and it is hilarious.
You know its almost over when they're laughing at you Jen.

Posted by: The original JC | 2009-06-23 10:41:52 PM


The (Orwellian)"Surveillance Act" goes before Parliament this Fall. It will allow the "authorities" to put citizens under random internet and other forms of surveillance. Random, my ass! They'll be targeting those who disagree with Stalinist policy such as the Thought Police. Write your MP (for all its worth anymore)and let them know this is an abomination in a "free" country.

Posted by: The original JC | 2009-07-19 8:13:36 AM


Yes:
Bill C-47, from the Conservative Party's "Minister of Public Safety" (no I didn't make this title up, see the .gc.ca website) Peter Van Loan . Orweilien is the exact phrase to describe this gang.

http://www.facebook.com/note.php?note_id=123640593351&comments=#/group.php?gid=102498139003&ref=nf

Posted by: V. M. Smith | 2009-07-19 9:25:09 AM



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