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5 ways not to be accountable and transparent: Harper's way

1. After proroguing Parliament in September to avoid facing Opposition questions over this pesky Senate scandal that won’t go away, Stephen Harper skipped town immediately after the government's Speech from the Throne on Wednesday.

2. Imagine if you just ignored a law? There’s usually a consequence for that. Well, in Ottawa, the Harper government is making a habit of snubbing the country’s access to information law, one of the backbones of a transparent government.

3. The good news is the Conservative government created a new budgetary watchdog position when it came the power. The bad news? The Conservatives have been undermining the Parliamentary Budget Officer ever since. This battle could end up back in court, but until then, the PBO has settled on getting information the old-fashioned way—filing Access to Information requests.

4. If there was ever a story that showcases Harper’s disdain for transparent and open government, it’s the ongoing Senate scandal. Harper’s story keeps on changing. His initial declaration that his office was cooperating fully with the Mike Duffy investigation into the Nigel Wright cheque is now in question. And Wright’s binder full of Duffy details has surfaced, after initially being withheld from investigators.

5. Spying doesn’t seem too transparent, does it? From domestic to international, the Conservatives are taking subterfuge seriously. 

Photo: zeeweez. Used under a Creative Commons BY 2.0 licence.