During the election campaign the Liberals in BC launched Harpocracy.ca, which documented and kept a running tally of Conservative candidates that had been muzzled: skipping all candidates meetings, refusing to talk to the media, and so on. By election day, well over 100 muzzlings had been recorded.
Well, if the Muzzle Watch was still on patrol, the counter would be spinning and giving off smoke: it looks the the Conservatives found the muzzle thing worked so well, they're trying it out on their own members:.
It's less than two weeks before the Conservative Party's policy convention in Winnipeg, and according to Canwest attendees haven't even been told yet what policy the powers that be will allow them to discuss:
But some party members say it's an attempt to muzzle grassroots supporters who might espouse views that could embarrass the Harper government.Are you a Conservative that wants to spend three days in balmy Winnipeg (Go Moose!) parroting party-approved talking points and providing background imagery for television coverage of The Leader's keynote? It will only cost you $850 – tax recieptable, of course. Just mind the donation limit. Recommend this Post on Progressive Bloggers
"They want to control the message. They don't want people talking about things that aren't scripted," said party member Connie Fournier, co-founder of the popular conservative blog, freedominion.com.
"This convention is a farce, because it'll be totally controlled from the top," said Charles Conn, a former Reform party candidate who resigned from the Mississauga-East-Cooksville, Ont., riding association earlier this year after, in his view, the party overrode the usual nomination process to appoint a hand-picked candidate. Although still a card-carrying party member, he doesn't plan to attend the convention.