The biggest accomplishment of Justin Trudeau is that he managed to make Canada a focus of intense international media attention, but not for respectable reasons. Canada’s freedoms are being severely compromised, and it is drowning economically as well. The latest out of Canada: Elon Musk tweeted that Trudeau is “trying to crush free speech“ in Canada.
Trudeau is trying to crush free speech in Canada. Shameful. https://t.co/oHFFvyBGxu
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 1, 2023
The proverbial ship has sailed. It has been a long, tough process for patriotic Canadians as they watch Trudeau strip away their freedoms. Musk was responding to a new law in Canada, Bill C-18, that requires social media and streaming services with revenues over $10 million to register with the government, starting in November 2023. Subscription television services which are available online, as well as Facebook, X, Netflix, and Disney, are also included, as are radio stations that livestream online, and podcast services. Individual podcasters need not worry, unless, of course, they make over $10 million in revenue.
The wing of the Canadian government overseeing Bill C-18 is the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC). Details of the requirements can be found here.
Trudeau is beyond “trying to crush free speech” in Canada, as Musk observed. He has already largely succeeded, and has trampled not only the freedom of speech. Other examples of Trudeau’s infringement of the freedom of Canadians include:
- his treatment of the truckers during the peaceful convoy protests; his Cabinet discussion about “crushing the Freedom Convoy with tanks“; and his freezing of the bank accounts of those who supported the trucker protest (and not just corporate accounts, either). Trudeau’s COVID overreach even prompted the Ohio State House to pass a resolution urging that Canada be added to the watch list of countries that restrict religious freedom. Trudeau made Amazon’s bestseller list, in a children’s book called How the Prime Minster Stole Freedom. Yet he got away with it all.
- his gun ban.
- his historic dealings with China.
- his appointment of an “Islamophobia” czar.
Bill C-18 did not suddenly appear in a kind of jump scare. The impetus for it was building over time, and its basis was actually formed under Canada’s anti-Islamophobia Motion, M-103, which “progressives” did everything they could to present as a benign motion which didn’t carry any legal ramifications. Everyone already knew that it wasn’t legislation, but few were willing to address its impact in laying the groundwork for a future bill, which we now see in Bill C-18.
In February, Trudeau’s own appointed Senator David Richards described the prime minister’s sweeping censorship Bill C-11, a precursor to Bill C-18, as “Stalinesque.” Richards called it “an Orwellian attempt to force individuals to comply with government messaging.” Richards’ description may have seemed exaggerated to those who were unaware of Trudeau’s activities, but it was spot-on.
Bill C-18 followed. It was also known as the Online Streaming Act. It was an updated version of Bill C-11, which it incorporated, with an addition: it requires digital giants such as Google and Meta to pay compensation to Canadian news sites to share any of the news content that appeared on their platforms. University of Ottawa Professor Michael Geist characterized it accurately: “Bill C-18 is a shakedown with requirements to pay for nothing more than listing Canadian media organizations with hyperlinks in a search index, social media post, or possibly even a tweet.”
The response from Google, Facebook and Instagram to Bill C-18, when they were asked to compensate Canadian news outlets, elicited a meltdown from Trudeau. Did he really expect social media giants to comply with his shakedown? Meta said it would shut out news in the country, meaning that all Facebook and Instagram users in Canada would be blocked from accessing news on these platforms. Google stated:
We have now informed the Government that when the law takes effect, we unfortunately will have to remove links to Canadian news from our Search, News and Discover products in Canada, and that C-18 will also make it untenable for us to continue offering our Google News Showcase product in Canada.
When Canada’s wildfires broke out and news was fundamental to access, everyone knew exactly whom to blame: Trudeau. But he wouldn’t accept responsibility. Instead, he blamed Meta and Google for supposedly “putting corporate profits ahead of people’s safety.”
Vicky Eatrides, Chairperson and Chief Executive Officer of the CRTC, stated:
We are developing a modern broadcasting framework that can adapt to changing circumstances. To do that, we need broad engagement and robust public records. We appreciate the significant participation during this first phase and look forward to hearing a diversity of perspectives at our contributions proceeding in November.
The government further explains:
A new bargaining regime to govern the making available of news content
The operators of dominant digital news intermediaries to which the Act applies would be subject to a new duty to bargain with eligible news businesses, which may bargain individually or as a group. This duty to bargain would arise when an eligible news business initiates bargaining with a digital news intermediary organization subject to the Act. The bargaining process could involve up to three sequential steps: bargaining sessions; mediation sessions; and final offer arbitration.
Final offer arbitration
When digital news intermediaries and news businesses do not reach agreements about making news content available through bargaining or mediation sessions, outstanding monetary disputes may proceed to a final offer arbitration process if at least one of the parties wishes to initiate arbitration. Under this process, an independent panel of arbitrators would select a final offer made by one of the parties.
This gibberish not only establishes powers of the CRTC online to set up an annoyingly inconvenient system in which potential users must now compete in a bargaining process, but it leaves a lot of questions about the players who will be comprising these “mediation sessions” and this “arbitration” on the government side. And beware whenever a government uses terms such as “independent panel,” because they are never “independent”; they end up being staffed with government cronies who are paid by taxpayers to advance the interests of the regime. And as for the sections of Bill C-18 guaranteeing the “freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression,” not even the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms has stopped Trudeau from his encroachments upon Canadian freedoms.
The world is increasingly coming to know what Canadians have been enduring ever since Trudeau came to power in 2015. In a telling gesture, Trudeau shut down the Office of Religious Freedom almost immediately after taking office. Three years later, his government made a change to the Canada Summer Jobs program that required organizations to tick a box affirming that they supported abortion in order to qualify for government funding. The former head of the Office of Religious Freedom, Andrew Bennett, pointed out Trudeau’s “totalitarian tendency,” and he has been proven right.
It was inevitable that Bill C-18 would now require registration with the Canadian government. The CRTC, which has been regulating Canada’s airwaves since 1976, is the reason why Canadian productions are so limited in content. Some would even say they’re boring. There is little room for full creativity. Now the CRTC has expanded online in its attempt to tighten its grip and stymie free expression, after the fashion of China and Iran.
M-103 was passed in 2018. It was cleverly presented as only a motion — not a law — but it was part of the groundwork for something more nefarious: a broad assault upon the freedom of expression. After extensive committee hearings, the Minister of Heritage, who was Melanie Joly at the time, published a document entitled “TAKING ACTION AGAINST SYSTEMIC RACISM AND RELIGIOUS DISCRIMINATION INCLUDING ISLAMOPHOBIA.” It stated:
The Government acknowledges that in order to fully understand the issues and challenges confronting Canada’s increasingly diverse population, comprehensive and high quality data is required to better monitor and target policies to eliminate discrimination and inequalities.
Those policies favored the red-green axis and were grounded in wokeism. They eventually resulted in the appointment of an “Islamophobia Czar“; Trudeau’s absurd designation of the patriotic Freedom Convoy as “racist” (and his subsequent crackdown on them); and the passing of Bill C-11, which promised “greater support for Black, Indigenous and racialized people’s content and viewpoints,” as determined by the woke Trudeau government. A group aligned with Trudeau, the Racial Equity Media Collective, called for a “mandatory collection of race-based data by broadcasters…” Then came a government-funded school booklet that warned the country’s children against the Conservative Party, the freedom of speech and even Donald Trump. The booklet was entitled Confronting and Preventing Hate in Canadian Schools; it was created by the far-left “anti-hate” network led by Bernie Farber, a member of the Trudeau government’s “’expert’ advisory group on online ‘safety.’” Some highlights of this 53-page propaganda booklet:
- Freedom of expression is presented as a cover for “hate.”
- Trump’s border wall to stop illegals is likewise presented as “hate.”
- Mainstream Conservative parties are singled out, and are presented as being “infiltrated” by bigots, “groypers,” and “white nationalists.” The pamphlet actually states: “While the majority of Groypers are white, there are a growing number of youth of colour involved in the movement, as they engage in antisemitism, anti- feminism/misogyny, anti-2SLGBTQIA+, Islamophobia, and anti-Black racism.”
- It condemns a “specific Canadian flavour” of the “worldview” that is “seen on many college campuses, often under the banner of “Canada First.”
- In a chapter on “hate promoting symbols,” the booklet names the Red Ensign flag as offensive, even though it was used as Canada’s national symbol until 1965.
- It condemns concerns about terrorism and crime as “anti-immigrant.”
- It references Trump as a “problematic politician” and condemns his border wall as “racist.”
- It warns about students who may inquire “why there aren’t any straight pride parades, or a white history month during class discussion.”
- Without context, anti-police sentiment is taught; the pamphlet claims that “Black residents are 20 times more likely to be shot by Toronto police than white counterparts.”
- The booklet ironically utilizes intersectional tropes and stereotypes “people of colour,” stating that “shared beliefs in misogyny, anti-2SLGBTQIA+, Islamophobia, and anti-Blackness will often attract and unite people of colour to hate groups.”
- It heavily promotes the Marxist, anti-nuclear family Black Lives Matter movement.
The Canadian government’s mission was clear by that point, and that mission is now broadening via Bill C-18. Trudeau has severely impaired and is now working to marginalize the freedom of speech. Trudeau, with whom Canadians are stuck until the 2025 elections, is well on his way to crushing that freedom. The leader of Canada’s official opposition Conservative Party tweeted:
We warned that Justin Trudeau’s online censorship law was coming to censor what people can see and say online.
Liberals denied it. Now, it is exactly what they’re doing.
Conservatives will repeal Trudeau’s censorship, and restore freedom of expression online for all.…
— Pierre Poilievre (@PierrePoilievre) October 2, 2023
As Trudeau tries to extend his egoism and oft-noted totalitarian tendencies beyond the borders of Canada itself, he may be in for a tougher ride than he anticipated. The ongoing controversy with India isn’t about to disappear, especially in light of the fact that India has just ordered Canada to remove 41 diplomats from its Delhi embassy. The Hindustan Times just published a story entitled Elon Musk’s Big Attack On Trudeau Amid India Tensions; ‘Canada Govt Crushing. Now Trudeau must contend with Facebook as well as Musk’s X. Add in the brouhaha over Canadian MP’s giving standing ovation to a prominent Nazi during a Zelensky visit to Ottawa, and the accompanying calls for accountability.