On Friday, the eagerly anticipated freedom convoy report was released. The five-volume, 2,000-page Freedom Convoy Report contains a number of alarming revelations that amply demonstrate the liberal administration’s poor governance. You will be astounded by certain revelations, and they may even create a dangerous precedent for future demonstrations.
The “Report of the Public Inquiry into the 2022 Public Order Emergency” handed down by Justice Paul Rouleau last week concluded with the “Freedom Convoy Report.” An investigation was launched into how the government handled the anti-vaccine mandate convoy demonstrations in Ottawa, Windsor, Ontario, Coutts, and Alberta by using the Emergencies Act.
Rouleau provided extensive details on everything from the origins of the convoy movement to the disruptive and occasionally hazardous character of the demonstrations after six weeks of public testimony and with unparalleled access to cabinet records.
The justifications given for emergency act
The government’s ineffective response to the convoy was a major factor in the commission’s decision to endorse the use of emergency measures. Over time, there was a loss of control over the situation due to confusion on who was in charge of what between the various levels of government and their respective police agencies.
However, it would be dreadful to establish incompetence as a justification for emergency powers.
Liberals froze finances unlawfully
The Freedom Convoy Report also revealed that the liberal administration had been seizing demonstrators’ bank accounts without obtaining court orders and had backed further hikes in social media surveillance. What a great approach to stop a protest—make everyone cashless and helpless until they leave.
What’s more alarming is that innocent civilians who weren’t even participating in the protest also suffered as a result.
Due to joint accounts, the Freedom Convoy Report stated that even those who weren’t a part of the convoy faced bank confiscation; Rouleau called this “unjust” but “inevitable.” He added that some people were unable to pay for child support or buy medicine.
SOCIAL MEDIA CAN GET YOU ARRESTED
The commission’s findings also recommended social media surveillance in addition to bank freezes. Rouleau discovered that banks heavily depended on the RCMP’s lists of people suspected of being involved in convoys, which were compiled via social media surveillance. It is absurd to put somebody on a suspects list and take government action against them based solely on social media.
The commission’s recommendation to enhance social media surveillance fuelled the fire. Isn’t it unsettling that the panel would advocate for even greater social media surveillance after dismissing government overreach in relation to asset freezes? Rouleau continued by advising that various levels of government keep investigating how to regulate online information.
Apart from this, the media was attacked for its aggressive commentary and for failing to acknowledge the majority of demonstrators’ lawful exercise of democratic rights, misrepresenting what actually occurred.
ROULEAU’S FEDERAL BIAS REPORT
Unexpectedly, Paul Rouleau claims that the emergency measure, which drew harsh condemnation for violating fundamental rights, was “justified.” According to him government met ‘very high’ threshold to invoke Emergencies Act.
Rouleau somehow concluded that the Trudeau government’s complete abuse of power to end the protest was reasonable. Despite the Canadian Security and Intelligence Service (CSIS) informing the Trudeau cabinet that the convoy did not meet the legal definition of a national security threat sufficient to invoke the extreme powers of the Emergencies Act. He claimed that a proclamation was sufficient justification based on the government’s own assessment of a security threat. He denied the notion made by some experts and convoy attorneys in their presentations before Rouleau that cabinet was required to follow the stringent definition of a national security danger under the CSIS Act.
“In my view, there was credible and compelling information supporting a reasonable belief that the definition of a threat to the security of Canada was met, CSIS and the cabinet serve different purposes,” Rouleau said in his report.
He denied a notion made by some experts and convoy attorneys in their presentations before Rouleau that cabinet was required to follow the stringent definition of a national security danger under the CSIS Act.
Also Read: Canada’s troubling Trifecta: The Threat of Donations, Disinformation, and Student Activism
However, he said that the prohibition, when combined with a freeze on some other assets, “had at least some impact on the footprint of the protests prior to police enforcement action” and “had a considerable impact in motivating demonstrators to leave unlawful gatherings.”
He added that the Emergencies Act also permitted RCMP officers and other out-of-jurisdiction police to enforce local and provincial bylaws in Ottawa and elsewhere.
Overall, Rouleau appeared to be doing everything he could to justify the Trudeau government’s incompetence
Basically, Rouleau authorised the present and following governments to invent justifications as they went along.
Speaking to reporters after the Freedom Convoy Report was tabled, the prime minister said he was pleased the inquiry concluded the threshold to invoke the act had been met.
Well, he must be happy.
Justin Trudeau and his administration saw the Public Order Emergency Commission report as exactly the whitewash he wanted. On the surface, it appears to be a report written by a judge who was nominated by Liberals to lead an inquiry that supports Liberal government policies.
It wouldn’t be wrong to conclude that the “save Trudeau” centric report still left a lot of truth and facts untouched.
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