There’s been a few stories in the media about how this Facebook group, Canadians Against Proroguing of Parliament, which was created last week has been very popular, reaching 20 000 members as of this Toronto Star story on it, 25 000 as of this CBC story, and sitting at currently just over 26000 as I type this blogpost.
A media blogger over at the Globe and Mail, Dan Cook, decided he was going to make fun of all this, and made a snarky title to the effect that this shows only 0.0006% of Canadians are mad about the prorogue.
First off, I’m no expert at math myself, but I believe he’s off by two orders of magnitude; its actually 0.06%, he’s off by 10,000% (we’ll ignore its gone up by 6000 members since he posted this). If I’m wrong on my math calculation, please correct me 😉
Secondly, and less snarkily, a group like this that can get 26000 outraged Canadians to sign up in less then a week shows it’s more then just Liberal/NDP party members and activist bloggers joining; there’s some real anger out there at this prorogue, and I think it’s a shame that Dan wants to put it down. His argument might be that he’s not going after them, but going after the Toronto Star for considering this front page news. He might have a point there, but considering how most media folks assumes regular folks are very apathetic about Parliament in general and this prorogue in particular, I’m not surprised a number like this caught their attention.
Anything that can encourage Canadians to be more politically involved and help hold this Conservative government and Harper accountable is a good thing. Harper may have unknowingly triggered that with his self-serving move to muzzle the Afghanistan detainee hearings. People can tell when a government is trying to cover something up,and people also can tell when there’s no good reason for Parliament not to be in session.
UPDATE: I should mention this same group (as referred to in the news media articles) are planning anti-prorogue protest rallies. It will be interesting to see how many people they can get to come out and turn their good numbers online into actual on-the-street activism.
UPDATE 2 @ 11:53 am : The group is now up over 30 000. I wonder whether Dan will update his blogpost as well to reflect that “new math”.
UPDATE 3 @ 1:24 pm: As alerted by a commenter, It appears Dan Cook did notice the little stink raised on his math (or the online editors did) and changed his math without comment or notice of editing. Very sneaky, Dan. Although, I again will snarkily mention he’s basing that percentage on the old 20 000 number; the group’s now at 33 722 members as of this update.
UPDATE 4 @ 1:35 pm: Poor Backseat Blogger, he doesn’t like it all these folks are raising a stink about Harper’s prorogue of Parliament. Last I looked, we’re still living in a democracy BBS – Harper has only shut down Parliament, he hasn’t shut down the media or people’s right of expression. If you don’t like it, tough.