Alright boys and girls, it’s now time to put on our Conservative Party of Canada thinking caps to discover why that party scrapped the compulsory census.
At first blush, it looked like the Conservative Party might wish to extend privacy in weird ways. But that is such an odd position for the governing party to take – wanting less info about its citizens. Now we know it’s not true, that last year alone the Conservative government coerced the telecom providers to hand over info 1.2 million times.
That’s a large fraction of the country. Based on a projection of a projection of a projection of the last real census data, Canada has over 30 million people. That telecom data might be more invasive and thorough than the long form census information ever was. I think the Conservatives passed up info provided by the census because they see things they like better in this telecom data and other spy sources.
With your Conservative Party thinking cap, digest all the advantages to Stephen Harper and his cronies. The first advantage is all this information is classified unlike with Stats Canada which had to release its numbers and stats to the whole country. The governing party gets the full effect of the stats with exclusivity and the unspoken advantages that brings.
Sure that’s an advantage, but the Conservatives might not remain in power that long.
Well firstly the stats themselves might help bias an election. Secondly we can use a Dr. Phil quote on the electorate: the best predictor of future behaviour is relevant past behaviour. Of the four major parties, the Conservatives, the Liberals, the NDP and the Greens, only the Conservatives and Liberals have ever formed a government. Presuming those telecom stats remain for government eyes only, odds are only the Conservatives and Liberals will ever see them.
Finally, the ruling party can leak relevant info to friends and corporations. Have you ever wondered how the Conservatives managed to out fundraise all the other parties for a long time now? Maybe its a tit for tat operation. Help me fundraise and maybe I’ll keep you in the telecom data loop.
Now taking my Conservative Party thinking cap off, I’m not at all sure this is what the Conservatives are actually doing. But look at the advantages of this telecom spy data. It sure makes sense out of the odd decision to make the census less valuable.