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Northern Reflections: Buying Votes

This week, Stephen Harper launched his Office for the Promotion of Religious Freedom. Tasha Kheiriddin is puzzled:

Of all the Conservatives’ initiatives to date, the most bewildering is its newly created Office for the Promotion of Religious Freedom. The Tories are deploying five million dollars of taxpayers’ money — ostensibly to promote not a particular religion, but the freedom to practice religion in general. Not in Canada, mind you, but around the world, in places from Turkey to Tibet.

But the office is more than puzzling. It’s strikes at the very heart of Canadian democracy. Kheriddin writes:

True, most

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Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and the Theocon Menace

It would be hard to imagine a more disturbing sight. Stephen Harper surrounded by a posse of religious leaders.Looking and sounding like a smarmy televangelist, while claiming it wasn't a partisan event. Despite all the Con signs like the one in the picture.And appointing as the ambassador for the sinister Office of Religious Freedom, the Dean of a Christian College whose curriculum would drag us back to the Dark Ages. Read more »

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper’s Scary Religious Crisis

Holy Moly. It looks as if Stephen Harper is having a full blown religious crisis. The new polls have come down from the mountain, and they really suck. New polling numbers from EKOS show the Conservative party’s popularity has dropped ten points overall since the 2011 spring election.And to make matters worse his search for a Messiah to save him is turning out to be a nightmare.

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BigCityLib Strikes Back: Gruending On John Baird’s Office of Religious Freedom

In fact, the plan is modeled on the Office of International Religious Freedom which was created by the Clinton administration in the United States in 1998. A common criticism is that the American office was focused almost entirely on the persecution of Christians abroad, and that it was used to create space for American evangelical Christians to proselytize in other countries. Madeline Albright, then the secretary of state, was opposed saying that the office in focusing only on religious persecution created a “hierarchy of human rights” — privileging persecution based upon religion over other that of race or gender, for

Dead Wild Roses: The DWR Sunday Religious Disservice – The Canadian Office of Religious Stupidity.

Hey I need some help eroding the church/state separation. Lets ask the experts!

I’m not really sure what is so shit-hot about the attitudes and conventions of the Dark Ages, but Harper and his government have decided to fecklessly dive into the land of pants-on-head stupid and establish a official government bureau of “Religious Freedom”. Let’s be clear, not something useful like an office sponsoring freedom FROM religion, so sorry Rishma of Pakistan, you still get be sentenced to death for allegedly burning pages from a magic book. Because, obviously we need MORE religion in the world

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Dead Wild Roses: The DWR Relgious Disservice: The Office of Religious Freedom? – Captain, set the “stupid” to Full!

We believe in spending your money on departments whose focus is the encouragement of illusion over reality. That is all.

Where to begin with such a malodorous concept? Starting with irony is always good, so… for instance how about the blinding irony of the Conservatives dedication to ‘austerity and smaller government’? How this equates with creating nebulous departments with equally nebulous goals defies rational comprehension.

“It was a Conservative campaign promise meant to promote religious freedom worldwide.

The promise, the Tories said, was to give a Canadian foreign policy focus to oppressed religious minorities in places such as

. . . → Read More: Dead Wild Roses: The DWR Relgious Disservice: The Office of Religious Freedom? – Captain, set the “stupid” to Full!