Another day, another editorial by uber left wing-nut Linda McQuaig over on i-politics .McQuuaig regurgitates the talking points of the left, that the evil despicable Stephen Harper is trying to stop independant thought, this time by forcing Canada Revenue Agency, an arms reach branch of the government no less, to audit the Canadian Center For Policy Alternatives. In McQuaig's socialist-addled mind, CRA auditing a think-tank she agrees with must be something nefarious by that Harper dude. Forget the fact CRA audits are routine procedure for think tanks. And forget the fact CCPA was audited twice before under the previous governments of Mulroney and Chretien (McQuaig did). Oh, she makes a flippant remark about how those were "routine audits" and this one has lasted 11 months, never mentioning the first audit under Mulroney lasted in parts of 1989 and 1990.
And ignore the fact McQuaig dredges up the Fraser Institute as if it gives her argument validity, imaginary though it may be. She cries that the Fraser Institute gets media coverage for it's yearly Tax Freedom day, proving that shows ties between the institute and Harper, while never mentioning the fact the CCAP gets the exact same coverage for it's yearly Alternative Federal Budget, which by the way is simply talking points of the NDP. So now let's take a look at something McQuaig never mentions, nor do any of those accusing the government of using CRA as muscle against organizations that disagree with it's policy.
I'm talking about this NEWS STORY FROM 1999. It deals with CRA auditing the Fraser Institute, the latest audit of several the right-wing institute was subjected too. In fact, you can pretty much just change the names Fraser Institute and CCAP in McQuaig's editorial and it's the same story. Something very telling in that 1999 story is this excerpt: "Revenue Canada’s 14-page set of written guidelines for think tanks notes that the Income Tax Act does not contain a definition of “charitable” or “charity”. The guidelines state that the courts have recognized four broad categories of charitable activities: relieving poverty, advancing education, advancing religion, and providing certain other benefits to the community, such as hospitals, public parks, or homes for the elderly.
Notice that part I underlined about "relieving poverty". That's important. Most on the left have complained Oxfam was warned it's goal can't be to end poverty, it must be to relieve poverty. That's right. The courts ruled this almost a decade before Stephen Harper became PM. Yet those on the left, including politicians and media have tried to intimate this is another example of Harper's heavy hand.
In regards to McQuaig's editorial, she completely overlooks the fact CRA stated that this audit was partially a result of the previous audits done under Mulroney and Chretien goverments. She is also oblivious to the fact the Fraser Institutes main focus is on taxes, business and the economy, while CCAP pushes changes to government policy, again with a left-wing bend, while criticising the current Conservative government. And that my friends, is the key to the CRA audit. Read this quote from the 1999 article, and tell me how it relates to the Canadian Center For Policy Alternatives.
"Revenue Canada’s written guidelines for think tanks state that “political activities must remain ancillary and incidental and cannot rise to the level of an objective”. According to the guidelines, registered-charity status may be prevented if “the organization’s efforts to influence politicians, bureaucrats, media and public on political matters are a constant, integral and inseparable aspect of its mission”.
This, in a nutshell is why I blog. The McQuaig's, Wynne's, Trudeau's, who all try to get partisan sound bites to draw votes from those who pay little attention to politics. If ignorance is bliss, McQuaig has enough bliss for every person in Canada.
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