On April 30, the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario (CPSO) announced a controversial new policy many Ontario doctors had been fearing.
CPSO ordered Ontario’s doctors not to make any statement that might be considered anti-vaccine, anti-masking, anti-distancing, or anti-lockdown. It forbids them to promote “unsupported, unproven” treatments for COVID-19. The CPSO doesn’t say which treatments, or by whom they are to be judged as unsupported or unproven.
Doctors are further forbidden from making comments that might encourage people to act contrary to government health orders.
Finally, there’s a naked threat: say the wrong thing and you’ll face “disciplinary action.” This translates into, ‘We’ll suspend your licence, cut off your income, and impoverish you.’
This is a horrifying statement from both a medical and a legal perspective.
A courageous group of doctors, calling themselves Canadian Physicians for Science and Truth, quickly pushed back with an online declaration. As I write this, 512 doctors and 13,288 concerned citizens have already signed it.
They make these three major objections. First, the CPSO is commanding them to abandon the scientific method, which requires vigorous, open debate in order to test existing theories and improve upon or replace them with more accurate ones. That’s how science advances.
Second, the CPSO is commanding doctors to breach their pledge to patients to seek out and apply evidence-based medicine in their care and treatment. Instead of a full range of current and emerging evidence from multiple sources, doctors are restricted to applying stagnant information from only one source: the government.
Third, doctors are being ordered to violate their patients’ right to be fully informed before receiving medical treatment. This implies doctors will also have to violate their own duty to obtain fully informed consent, putting themselves at risk of eventual lawsuits. Full information about masks, social distancing and vaccinations is not something you can impart to a patient in a five-minute office visit. Half the world has spent the past 15 months seeking out information about these subjects and there’s still plenty of room for debate.
It’s therefore easy to see why many doctors are outraged by the new CPSO policy. But as a lawyer, I can see two other problems.
First, the dictates of the CPSO violates the Ontario Human Rights Code. Sec. 6 of the code says: “Every person has a right to equal treatment with respect to membership in any trade union, trade or occupational association or self-governing profession without discrimination because of race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed, sex …” [emphasis added].
The CPSO’s threat is a clear statement of its intention to discriminate on the basis of creed. Although some people interpret “creed” as religion, it actually has a broader meaning. If ever anything qualified as a creed, a doctor’s Hippocratic oath would. It requires doctors to use their own judgment for the benefit of their patients and to “abstain from whatever is deleterious.” Doctors also pledge to “give no deadly medicine to anyone if asked.”
Any doctor who has extensively researched the scientific literature on mandatory mask-wearing, social distancing, and lockdowns will know there is an increasing body of evidence that all of these practices can do more harm than good. More than 4,200 vaccination-related deaths have been recorded in a US database, called Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS), where adverse events are widely under-reported. The number in Europe is more than 10,000. Doctors can’t “un-see” this information. It forms an important part of the cost/benefit analysis in determining whether or not COVID-19 vaccines are appropriate for their patients.
The CPSO, by threatening the licenses of doctors who speak up about these issues, is forbidding them to exercise their creed and discriminating against those who do, contrary to the Human Rights Code.
Doctors also have rights under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms: Sec, 2 protects the rights to freedom of conscience, belief, opinion and expression, while Sec, 7 protects the rights to liberty and security of the person. The CPSO statement – with its implicit threat to cut off doctors’ incomes – violates these rights. As the body exclusively empowered by the state to govern doctors’ conduct, there’s no question the CPSO is an agent of the state and is therefore governed by the Charter.
Other professionals in the health care industry – chiropractors and naturopathic doctors – have told me privately they too are being bullied into silence and forced to comply with inadvisable practices, such as masking. And now British Columbia has gotten into the game, too. Its College of Physicians and Surgeons issued a May 6 statement containing similar threats.
Eventually, this issue will come before the courts – possibly when a doctor disobeys the CPSO and is facing disciplinary action, or when doctors proactively hire lawyers to sue the CPSO for violating their rights. I look forward to the time when someone stands up.
Karen Selick is a Columnist for the Western Standard
SLOBODIAN: Manitoba response to Freedom Convoy has politicians cowering
“Truckers rolling down the highways — determined heroes in thousands of rigs, trucks, and cars — have unleashed a righteous beast in Canadians fed up with bullies messing with their freedoms and livelihoods and treating the unvaccinated as second-class lepers.”
Federal politicians and bureaucrats will probably be hiding in their closets or under their desks, frozen in fear, when the massive Freedom Convoy arrives in Ottawa.
And they should hide in shame until they get it straight — that they were elected to carry out the will of the people; that it’s long past time to start listening.
Maybe a crescendo of blaring horns in the capital will improve their hearing.
They’ve created a big COVID-19 mess, underestimated the Canadians they’ve tormented and tried to crush, pulled cheap stunts, and delivered fancy, empty condescending lectures.
Few are listening to them anymore. Truckers have taken the wheel and won the trust and respect and hearts and minds of countless Canadians who oppose vaccine mandates and freedom of speech being trampled on.
Elected pooh-bahs who’ve lost any esteem they may have had just don’t know what to do about that.
Truckers rolling down the highways — determined heroes in thousands of rigs, trucks, and cars — have unleashed a righteous beast in Canadians fed up with bullies messing with their freedoms and livelihoods and treating the unvaccinated as second-class lepers.
That’s why hundreds of freezing supporters braved -30C temperatures to greet the convoy when it blared into Brandon, Man., population 60,000, around noon Tuesday.
A driver going the other way told the Western Standard the convoy was 100 km long.
It was a magnificent, electric scene that has, and will continue to repeat itself along highways, roads and overpasses in towns and cities across Canada until convoys coming from several directions converge on the capital January 29.
The cheering Brandon supporters didn’t come empty-handed. They brought more than 1,000 bagged lunches — sandwiches, homemade cookies, muffins, puffed wheat cakes — prepared in kitchens throughout the province.
Someone even very thoughtfully hauled in porta-potties.
These regular Canadians don’t have much use for most politicians (Of course, Carlton MP Pierre Poilievre is an exception).
But Canadians love, love, love the truckers!
“People have been dropping food and drinks off all morning,” said Virden’s Ingrid Wilkinson, who organized the bagged lunches served at several stations.
“I’m doing it for all the harm that’s been caused. I personally know many people who have been greatly harmed. I’m doing this for our parents who had to live through Nazi occupation. Thankfully, they’re not in this world now. I do it for the kids, their future,” said Wilkinson.
“This is not sustainable. It’s a big lie.”
The Virden group had $825 left over from money raised to buy food to donate it to the trucker’s GoFundMe which stands at $4.6 million and counting. This amazing feat was accomplished in just 10 days.
About 193 km away in Headingley, more food and support awaited the convoy where Hutterite communities prepared for the arrival of the “dear” truckers.
“We are setting up kitchens n gonna feed you all. We are with you, and we fully support this massive convoy for freedom,” tweeted Paul Kleinsasser. “May God protect you on your journey, keep on going, we are praying for you. God bless.”
The convoy was expected to arrive in Winnipeg a few hours later.
The truckers oppose the cross-border vaccine mandates that severely impact their livelihoods.
The truckers also oppose vaccine mandates inflicted on everyone else — nurses, police, military, worshipers, children, students — everyone.
Canadians embrace and are emboldened by their courage and stamina.
So yes, they are well fed, dearly loved, and, it appears, to be shunned by most politicians.
However, Conservative MPs Andrew Scheer and Warrant Steinley did show up to greet the convoy in Regina Monday night.
Conservative Deputy Leader Candice Bergen blasted the Liberal government and threw her support behind truckers.
“I support peaceful demonstrations against these mandates, and our truckers from Portage-Lisgar and from across Canada,” the Portage-Lisgar MP tweeted Tuesday.
Bergen said Trudeau “dealt our crumbling supply chain another blow” when he implemented mandates making 26,000 truckers unable to transport of goods across the Canada-U.S. border “which will only drive inflation higher than it’s been in over 30 years.
“Conservatives have been opposed to federal mandated vaccines since Trudeau introduced them: and we oppose the mandatory vaccine on Canadian truckers.”
Bergen noted that truckers bring much-needed supplies to Canada and “worked tirelessly over the pandemic” to keep supplies moving.
“Hamstringing this essential industry is nothing more than a political move to further divide Canadians.”
As for the main event in Ottawa, count on People’s Party of Canada Leader Maxime Bernier to be there.
But hell will freeze over before Prime Minister Justin Trudeau finds the courage or respect to greet the convoy that speaks for a huge segment of the country.
Opposition Leader Erin O’Toole repeatedly dodged questions Monday about whether he supports the truckers offering a wishy-washy non-committal word salad. So no, he’ll be absent. Lord help the Conservative party while he’s at the helm.
Let these two ‘leaders’ hide in the closet from the big rigs, blaring horns, and burly truckers headed their way.
Time has passed for them to speak. Nobody cares about what they have to say anymore.
The people have spoken.
It’s time for the politicians and unelected bureaucrats to listen.
And with every blaring horn, the message gets stronger and clearer: Enough!
Slobodian is the Senior Manitoba Columnist for the Western Standard
SELICK: Ontario’s health minister should get a second opinion
“In normal times, doctors frequently disagree with one another. That’s why patients often do seek out second opinions. “
Ontario Health Minister Christine Elliott is apparently unfamiliar with the concept of getting a second opinion from a different doctor when the first doctor’s advice doesn’t seem to be producing the desired results.
In a widely publicized speech she made on January 19, Elliott said: “I want to respond to some extremely concerning reports that some doctors are spreading misinformation about vaccines. At a time when it’s never been more important for Ontarians to have confidence in the safety and effectiveness of vaccines, this [dissenting advice] is unacceptable. I will be sending a letter to the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario (CPSO) urging them to do everything that is possible to put an end to this behaviour. They should consider all options in doing so, including reviewing the licenses of physicians found to be spreading misinformation.”
It is certainly true that some Ontario doctors have departed from the “must-vaccinate” narrative of the majority and the CPSO. However, it is not a mere handful that are creating such stress for the health minister. Forty MDs were already under investigation by the CPSO before Ms. Elliott expressed her wish for an even broader witch hunt.
There are many other dissenters that the CPSO has not yet targeted. For instance, a group calling itself Canadian Physicians for Science and Truth posted a declaration on May 9, 2021 responding to the CPSO’s April 30th threat to impose disciplinary action on any physician who questions or debates COVID-19 orthodoxy. The declaration has garnered 718 signatures from healthcare professionals (many of whom have shown their credentials as “MD”), as well as 20,171 signatures from ordinary citizens. Those signing the declaration accuse the CPSO of ordering physicians to depart from the scientific method by shying away from debate on scientific subjects.
Another group, the Canadian Covid Care Alliance, is more protective of the identities of its members but indicates that it is an “alliance of over 500 independent Canadian doctors, scientists, and health care providers…committed to providing quality, balanced, evidence-based information to the Canadian public about COVID-19 so that hospitalizations can be reduced, lives saved, and our country safely restored to normal as quickly as possible.”
Health Minister Elliott must surely share those goals, so why has she moved so pre-emptively and harshly to demonize a contingent of her fellow travelers? She herself is not a doctor or scientist, and not independently qualified to determine which group of doctors really does have an accurate view of the facts.
Rational people – when faced with a choice between two opposing scientific opinions – examine both of them closely and give due consideration to the viewpoints of all the people more highly credentialed than themselves. They don’t behave like Ms. Elliott did – pretending to know that one group is wrong while the other has a monopoly on truth.
In normal times, doctors frequently disagree with one another. That’s why patients often do seek out second opinions. Sometimes the second doctor, or even the third or fourth, has a more satisfactory answer than the first did.
Ms. Elliott must surely realize by now that the experts she has been relying on for the past two years have not served the people of Ontario well. It’s high time she abandoned her arrogant attitude towards those who are offering a different opinion and started listening to them instead of threatening them with the loss of their livelihoods.
Karen Selick is a columnist for the Western Standard
WAGNER: The benefits of a federal Western independence party
“As long as Albertans continue to vote Conservative federally, Justin Trudeau knows that he has nothing to worry about.”
For Alberta to become independent, there must be a provincial referendum on independence that receives a clear majority vote. For the referendum to take place, there must be a party in power willing to hold one. That requires the election of a provincial political party that favours asking Albertans whether they want to remain in Canada or choose a path towards self-determination and prosperity. The need for a provincial independence party is clear and easy to understand.
But some people ask: what about a federal Western independence party? What would be the point of that? It could neither mandate the necessary referendum nor pass federal legislation benefiting the West. Such a party therefore seems pointless, they suggest.
However, there are some clear benefits to a federal political party that should be considered.
For one thing, a federal Western independence party gives pro-independence voters an option besides the pro-federalist parties currently on offer. Patriotic Alberta voters who reject the Central Canadian parties would at least have someone they can conscientiously support. They could “vote their values,” so to speak, and send a message to Ottawa that voting for other parties doesn’t accomplish.
Right now, many independence-minded Albertans support Maxime Bernier’s People’s Party. The People’s Party has a unique and beneficial message that is attractive to conservative-minded Westerners, so that’s understandable. Bernier’s opposition to the Paris Climate Accord would mean that a Peoples’ Party federal government would eliminate the kinds of policies that prevent Western freedom and prosperity.
That is excellent, of course. However, because the People’s Party doesn’t restrict its focus to Western interests, it can’t represent the West in the same way that an exclusively Western party could. This is not to disparage the People’s Party, but simply to note that as a pan-Canadian party it must represent the interests of every region in the country, not just the West.
Having a federal independence party – such as the Maverick Party – does more than simply provide an option for Western regionalist voters. If it were to win a substantial number of votes (whether in a by-election or general election), that would alert Central Canadians to the increasing anger towards Ottawa in the West.
As long as Albertans continue to vote Conservative federally, Justin Trudeau knows he has nothing to worry about. Conservative MPs from Alberta undoubtedly sympathize with the plight of the West, but their options to help are severely constrained by the need to appeal to voters in places like Toronto, Ottawa, and Montreal. The Conservative Party wants more than anything to achieve power, and the path to power runs through Central Canada. Thus, the interests of Alberta will always be a very low priority for the Conservative Party.
In contrast, were one or more Western independence MPs to be elected, Trudeau would see the West was not just going to lie down and let him run us over. He might finally understand that his anti-oil industry policies would be met by stiff resistance and that he was in for a real fight.
Most importantly of all, though, is that the election of one or more Maverick Party MPs would provide a significant morale boost for the entire Western independence movement. There would be lots of excitement that would lead to increased support, even at the provincial level.
There’s something about an electoral victory that generates credibility, even if power is not attained by the victor. That is, even though Maverick MPs would not form government or exercise power, the fact that they received voter support would provide credibility for the independence movement as a whole. In this kind of situation, quality leaders would likely emerge who could take the movement forward.
Some people point out that there have been Bloc Québécois MPs in Ottawa for years and they have done little for Quebec. Therefore, Maverick MPs from Alberta would be just as pointless.
However, everyone expects Quebec to send separatist MPs to Ottawa. They’ve been doing that for decades. Alberta sending independence-minded MPs to Ottawa would be entirely different. The election of Maverick MPs would constitute a political earthquake that would rock the nation. It would be the Canadian news story of the decade, and it would generate new interest and energy in the Western independence movement.
In short, a federal political party could potentially play a meaningful role in the move towards Alberta independence. A federal party is not as essential as a provincial party for the independence movement to succeed, but the potential benefits it could provide should not be overlooked.
Michael Wagner is a columnist for the Western Standard
Truckers: ‘We are not separatists or terrorists’
China changes Fight Club ending to cops busting anarchists
SLOBODIAN: Manitoba response to Freedom Convoy has politicians cowering
Dr. Bonnie Henry ordered to stand trial
The Western Standard Is Back
Trudeau calls the unvaccinated racist and misogynistic extremists
- Truckers: ‘We are not separatists or terrorists’
- China changes Fight Club ending to cops busting anarchists
- SLOBODIAN: Manitoba response to Freedom Convoy has politicians cowering
- Fortune Minerals to purchase JFSL facility for $5.5 million to build cobalt refinery
- SELICK: Ontario’s health minister should get a second opinion
- Truckers: ‘We are not separatists or terrorists’ on
- SLOBODIAN: Manitoba response to Freedom Convoy has politicians cowering on
- SELICK: Ontario’s health minister should get a second opinion on
- WAGNER: The benefits of a federal Western independence party on
- Truck convoy organizer says GoFundMe cash not frozen on
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