Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Bureaucrats and Media: Getting the Truth Out

I've never been in the civil service, so maybe this is well understood there, but it seems to me that the story of Sun News and the staged citizenship swearing event highlights the ability for muzzled bureaucrats to get the real story out when the government blames them for its poor behaviour or performance.  As long as a few media organizations are willing to spend the time making Access to Information Act requests, the bureaucrats just have to make sure they've emailed one another the real details of the events in question, and let the media do the rest.  I hope these employees are protected from retribution, when this sort of thing happens. 

In a government that has taken to muzzling scientists, bureaucrats, diplomats and in some cases even its own cabinet ministers, the Access to Information act provides a vital outlet for information the government doesn't want out. 

In that vein, I would look out for the goverment amending (gutting) the act.  I'm sure they could concoct some kind of cost-cutting justification for doing so, and get their loyalists all enraged about the biased liberal media engaging in costly witch-hunts.

You heard it here first. 

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