Remember the "Scud Stud"? Cutie-pie journalist Arthur Kent, who earned that somewhat two-edged nickname while reporting on the first Gulf War — and who left NBC in a fight over entertainment versus news — is a Canadian. And boy, is he mad.
Why? Because although it's not getting noticed much outside the True North, what with all the other awful stories dominating the headlines these days, Prime Minister Stephen Harper has shut down Parliament.
Now, prorogation, as it's called, is definitely within the power of the PMO. All he has to do is make a formal request of the Governor General, and it's usually a done deal. It's just that the reason for the latest one is a little suspicious. We cats thought it was because Harper wanted to use the recess to appoint a bunch of fellow Tories to the Senate, which may still be true — but apparently he also wished to bury a legislative inquiry into prisoner abuse in Afghanistan. How undemocratic. How Rovian.
Which is where the Scud Stud comes in. He's blasted Harper on his website, writing: "There has been an unwritten fatwa maintained by the Prime Minister's Office against discussion of any and all controversial aspects of [Canada's role in Afghanistan]." He is particularly offended since Canadian soldiers have been dying in the Afghan war since 2001. If democratic institutions can be so easily shuttered, what are those soldiers fighting for?
Well, around 200,000 "regular" Canadians would like an answer to that, too. Through an anti-prorogation group on Facebook, they're planning nationwide protests next Saturday. A la prochaine.