Now that Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has authorized the Canadian government’s use of the Emergencies Act, giving the government much broader powers to deal with anti-vaccine mandate protests in his country, it might be useful to recall that in 2013, asked what country he most admired besides Canada, he selected communist China, even while admitting they had a “basic dictatorship.”
When Trudeau was asked during a “Ladies’ Night” Liberal fundraiser what country he most admired besides Canada, he answered, “There’s a level of admiration I actually have for China. Their basic dictatorship is actually allowing them to turn their economy around on a dime and say, ‘We need to go green, we want to start investing in solar.’”
Then Trudeau mocked Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper, continuing, “There is a flexibility that I know Stephen Harper must dream about of having a dictatorship that he can do everything he wanted that I find quite interesting.”
When they tell you who they are, believe them. pic.twitter.com/BuoNv874iZ
— Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) February 15, 2022
The Toronto Sun noted in February 2021 how once Trudeau came to power in 2015, his government fawned over China:
Whether it was Small Business Minister Mary Ng happily tweeting about eating PEI-made ice cream in Beijing in July, 2019, or Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan shocking many participants at a Halifax security conference four months later by declaring China was not our “adversary”— it was always the same.
No matter how much China provoked Canada — accusing us of being white supremacists in the Meng affair and threatening the safety of Canadians in Hong Kong if they supported pro-democracy demonstrators — the Trudeau government love for China continued.
The BBC explained about Trudeau’s authorization of the Emergencies Act, “The law will grant Mr. Trudeau’s government extraordinary powers for 30 days — including the power to prohibit public assembly, travel and the use of specific property.”
On Tuesday, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association condemned Trudeau invoking the Emergencies Act in a statement which read:
The federal government has not met the threshold necessary to invoke the Emergencies Act. This law creates a high and clear standard for good reason: the Act allows government to bypass ordinary democratic processes. This standard has not been met.
The Emergencies Act can only be invoked, according to its own terms, when a situation “seriously endangers the lives, health or safety of Canadians and is of such proportions or nature as to exceed the capacity or authority of a province to deal with it,” or “seriously threatens the ability of the Government of Canada to preserve the sovereignty, security and territorial integrity of Canada” and when the situation “cannot be effectively dealt with under any other law of Canada.”
The Emergencies Act is there to address these kinds of extreme threats to Canada, not to protect the economy.
Governments regularly deal with difficult situations, and do so using powers granted to them by democratically elected representatives. Emergency legislation should not be normalized. It threatens our democracy and our civil liberties.
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