stephen harper and the conservatives ran on a platform of bringing accountability to the government after the liberal government fell into a mass of corruption, something that is not altogether surprising when a government is in power for so long. the liberals had become arrogant, privy to their own greed, and indifferent because of the lack of any percieved threat from a disjointed, and let's face it, pathetic political right.

but now the conservatives are in power, with everybody's favorite robot, stephen harper in charge. harper could give al gore a run for his artificial intelligence. i swear, they were probably made from the same company. except the conservative model was probably outsourced.

earlier in the year, they started having secret
cabinet meetings and barred reporters from the floor where cabinet meetings are held, saying that essentially, it was nobody's business when cabinet met. now, harper's government has banned reporters from the military base in trenton, ontario, to cover the tuesday evening arrival of the remains of four soldiers who died in a weekend bombing. defence minister gordon o'connor says the return of the remains is a "private and solemn" event to be shared only by the military and relatives of the soldiers.
"there is a time to mourn," he said in a statement monday, "and we want to respect the privacy needs of the grieving families."

apparently, the conservative government is incredibly caring for the feelings of the soldiers' families. more so than any other government ever elected to parliament. i'm calling b.s. on this issue, because taking photos of the returning bodies is nothing new. it's just called journalism. it is becoming increasingly apparent that this government is not interested in being transparent, chosing instead to rip off bush administration strategies. i should say that i understand what they are doing in relation to the whole afghanistan issue, and I understand why they believe it is necessary. the bush administration did the exact same thing, saying that it would erode support from the troops. (actually, support for troops is always strong; it's support for the war they're concerned about). however, i believe that this will not serve the public any good.
war should never be censored. when dealing with war, it is important that people see the images, see the horror. that way they not only understand the gravity of what our men and women overseas are fighting and dying for, but they will also understand the nature of war, and that deciding to go to war is not a decision to be made lightly. the justifications for war have to be legit and worth dying for. the government is starting to look like it has something to hide.
in the end, it should be the families deciding whether they want reporters at the ceremonies. richard leger's son marc was killed in afghanistan four years ago. he says, "i know, in 2002, it was a great thing for us to have the media there... we wanted to show all canadians what the cost of their liberty is." he went on to tell cbc newsworld that people are saying thanks to him for the life of his son. "as a parent," he said, "that's hard to hear, but knowing what's the reason behind it helps us to move on."
stephen harper wants an accountable government. well, it's hard to keep a government accountable if they're unwilling to be open about things.