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Oy, Canada: The Levant Inquisition

OK, it should be flamingly obvious that Ezra Levant's hearing before the Canadian Human Rights Commission for having the audacity to exercise his right to free speech and free press to publish the infamous Mohammed Cartoons are going to be a high point in the struggle for freedom against Islamofascism and the nanny state. Mr. Levant is posting videos of the hearing on his YouTube channel, and we here at Wizbang think that the events shown there are so damned important, we're going to post the embedded YouTube videos here.

We also encourage anyone with the ability to do so to download and save the videos, as YouTube has a remarkable history of removing videos that show Islam in a bad way (also known as "speaking truth to psychos").

As of the initial writing, Mr. Levant has posted six excerpts. His opening statement is below, and the remainder of the videos will be added to the extended section of this posting as they become available.

Opening Statement:

Update: Part Seven added.

What Was Your Intent?

The Real Violence In Edmonton

I Don't Answer To The State

Entitled To My Opinion?

Attributes Of Free Speech

How Does The Commission Make Decisions?

Closing Arguments


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Comments (32)

Can't wait for installment ... (Below threshold)
RB:

Can't wait for installment #7, and beyond. Someone should duct-tape McCain and Feingold to a chair and force them to view this "hearing."

The Noxious Fruits of Hate ... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

The Noxious Fruits of Hate Speech laws

"Empowering the State to proscribe and punish speech is not only the most dangerous step a society can take -- though it is that -- it's also the most senseless. It never achieves its intended effect of suppressing or eliminating a particular view. If anything, it has the opposite effect, by driving it underground, thus preventing debate and exposure. Worse, it converts its advocates into martyrs -- as one sees from the hero-worship now surrounding people like Levant and Steyn, who now become self-glorifying symbols of individual liberty rather than what they are: hateful purveyors of a bitter, destructive, authoritarian ideology."

[ . . . ]

http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/2008/01/13/hate_speech_laws/index.html

Dang Adrian, I just read th... (Below threshold)

Dang Adrian, I just read that article. Why doesn't Greenwald just admit he is on the terrorists side? How can anyone be against those who expose islamic extremism?

Anyone who gives this less ... (Below threshold)
Mitchell:

Anyone who gives this less than 5 stars is an idiot. It is one of the most important stories of the year. We lose these freedoms, we lose them all. It's not just a Canadian liberal's wet dream--this inquisition and censorship, it's in the heart of most of academia, and leftist politicians in the U.S.

Adrian: "Empowering the Sta... (Below threshold)
Drago:

Adrian: "Empowering the State to proscribe and punish speech is not only the most dangerous step a society can take -- though it is that -- it's also the most senseless."

Ha ha ha ha ha.

Too funny.

Adrian is simply playing "lefty Good Cop" per standard Liberal Operating Procedure.

You just know that deep down, Adrian, like all lefties, is four-square behind this prosecution.

However, since the left has not quite consolidated total control over dissemination of the media in Canada, they have to have some members pretend to be "upset" at this over-reach of government in squelching free speech.

The contradictions of Liberalism inexorably lead to leftism and the empowerment of the Central Authority at the expense of Individual liberties. We see this with the establishment of the same sorts of "Commissions" in the EU and Britain. We have already seen efforts to make it illegal for Christians to publicly espouse their beliefs.

We see it (and have seen it for 20 years) on American campuses with the enactment of "speech codes" etc pushed forward by Liberal academics administrators (of course, it's always been for the greater "public" good).

Whereever the left gains a foothold, the oppression of the individual and the right to free speech inevitably follows.

Simply visit DemocraticUnderground and read the paeans to Castro and Hugo.

The evidence is clear.

Abundant.

And irrefutable.

So go ahead Adrian, try and switch the topic from the obvious: the undeniable attempt by the left in Canada to oppress and suppress the Free Speech rights of non-lefties.

You have to, since facing the facts is apparently too much for you.

"You just know that deep do... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

"You just know that deep down, Adrian, like all lefties, is four-square behind this prosecution."

So you are trying to tell me what I THINK -- "deep down" to use your words.

That's rich.


But isn't that what the fol... (Below threshold)

But isn't that what the folks on the left do, Adrian? If you (IE the vast ignorant unwashed) aren't explicitly FOR something the left likes, you're not simply indifferent or uncaring, you're assumed to be automatically violently opposed to it.

Re gay marriage - I'm indifferent, therefore I'm homophobic.

Re abortion - I'm somewhat against it, want it to stay legal though - therefore I'm a 'right to lifer' who is automatically shoved over into the far right, wanting to see wimmin barefoot and preggers.

Re racism - I believe that all should be judged by their actions instead of by their skin color. Therefore, I'm racist because I'm not automatically willing to give massive preferences to those who have more melanin - regardless of how they act.

Re sexism - I was agast when Nancy Hopkins damn near fainted when the President of Harvard suggested there might be innate differences between men and women. There are differences, only an idiot would refuse to acknowledge them, and therefore I'm a sexist for thinking there MIGHT be some differences between men and women.

Re free speech - only the left can determine what speech should be free, apparently. The Canadian example is a prime example of what happens when limitations on free speech are codifed into law. It's not difficult to see that the legal system is indeed a double-edged sword, and what may seem like a good idea at the time (to avoid 'offending' anyone) can come back to cut your throat later.

Shall I continue? Agenda politics on the left have turned them into almost laughable caricatures instead of people seeking to find and promote truth. The sad part is - like most paranoid organizations - the various subgroupings think EVERYONE ELSE is out to get them and any criticism of any part of an agenda is met with extreme and active hostility.

Whereas I think most folks would just wish they'd stop trying to run everyone's lives according to how THEY believe.

You have to admit that some... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

You have to admit that someone telling me what I am thinking "deep down" in this context is funny -- especially when they are arguing AGAINST (as is the Glenn Greenwald essay) trying to prosecute people for what they are thinking.

It's just funny.

Deep down you think so too.

It seems your trackback isn... (Below threshold)

It seems your trackback isn't working, but I linked you here for all three of your Levant posts (so far).

Here's a YouTube playlist o... (Below threshold)

Here's a YouTube playlist of all these videos - and I'll be adding the new ones as they come in - for anyone who wants to embed it into their blog.

http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=1C0BA528800C4AE5

Earlier Drago: "You just kn... (Below threshold)
Drago:

Earlier Drago: "You just know that deep down, Adrian, like all lefties, is four-square behind this prosecution."

Adrian: "You have to admit that someone telling me what I am thinking "deep down" in this context is funny -- especially when they are arguing AGAINST (as is the Glenn Greenwald essay) trying to prosecute people for what they are thinking."

hmmmm, Adrian, do you know what a non sequitor is?

I suggest you look it up.

Otherwise, please explain how my recounting the blatant, obvious, numeroous examples of lefties (ALWAYS the left) attempting to ENFORCE speech codes and enact "hate crime" legislation, and how these actions are supported by lefties (ALWAYS the left), is equivalent somehow to my being supportive of the notion of PROSECUTING individuals for what they think.

Of course, you can't.

More obfuscation.

Again, for Adrian's benefit (since he seems to need alot of remedial help): It is the left, and only the left, that does these things in the West.

Further, these actions taken by leftists are supported by leftists.

Further, these lefties have nothing but praise for other lefties (like Hugo and Castro) who create lefty totalitarian "paradises".

Again, lefties. No one else.

So what does Adrian link to? Why, a piece by Glenn Greenwald (of all the idiots in the world) whose biggest concern seems to be the mischaracterized (by Glenn...and other leftists!!) comments by Newt Gingrich.

Thus, Adrian, by his very action here at this blog, proves my point.

Lefties pull this "thought-crime" crap.

Other lefties support it.

However, in some places (where the left does not hold a monopoly on information) some other (though much fewer) lefties "complain" about this "thought-crime" crap. But the truth comes out in the examples of where "this type of thing leads" by HYPOTHESIZING what the MISCHARACTERIZED remarks of Newt Gingrich (and other horrible right-wingers) would mean to everyone instead of focusing on the REAL-WORLD, happening RIGHT NOW, easily observable ANYWHERE examples of left wing thought control.

Well played Adrian. You can pick up your Soros-funded cookie now.

I apologize if I embarrasse... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

I apologize if I embarrassed you.

Drago:Please tone ... (Below threshold)

Drago:

Please tone it down a notch or three. You're generating a lot of heat, not much light.

One or two concrete examples are worth a dozen general accusations.

Adrian:

Did Greenwald write that, or was it one of his numerous sock puppets?

OK, cheap shot aside (but in his case, it's ALWAYS relevant), it's amazing the lengths he'll go to to avoid just out-and-out saying "this is despicable, even when it's done against someone I don't like."

J.

No, I think Adrian is since... (Below threshold)
LiveFreeOrDie Author Profile Page:

No, I think Adrian is sincere, and so is Greenwald. I believe they are allies on this matter.

I think the left has a core misunderstanding of the importance of economic liberty. I think the Iraq war was the right thing to do.

In the name of G*d, I don't understand why the left thinks it was a good idea to let huge corporations deduct health care for sixy years, but not small business or individuals, all the while complaining about corporate hegemony.

I have no idea why they complain about transnationals, but fail to see that a teachers union is a transnational to the citizens of a small town trying to run their own school system.

But when it comes to speech there are plenty on the right and left who would restrict it, but there are more - including people we completely disagree with - who think political speech restrictions are A REALLY BAD IDEA.

I believe Adrian on this issue. I believe Greenwald on this issue.

I am happy to have them as allies regarding this issue.

And if I'm wrong, well, that's what amendment #2 was for.

Oh, and I love Gingrich, but he has been tending toward high power solutions lately.

I'm glad that Greenwald is ... (Below threshold)

I'm glad that Greenwald is coming out against laws that punish speech.

I'm sorry that he can't just say they're wrong.

But if he persuades people they're stupid, well that's a win.

I'm sorry that he's so invested in the "right" being an "authoritarian" ideology that he can't see that it's about individual liberty. Something we *ought* to agree on.

And I'm sorry that he can't see that Levant is right to utterly refuse to try to make nice, that he has a right to do exactly what he is accused of doing. That the question of his *intentions* is irrelevant.

I nominate this post for th... (Below threshold)

I nominate this post for the Wizbang! Most Orwellian Incident of the Year

OK, so that's not an official Wizbang! Category. But it should be.

I just orgasmed after watch... (Below threshold)
Pat:

I just orgasmed after watching every video.

Levant is a true mensch, th... (Below threshold)
iurockhead:

Levant is a true mensch, that guy has some very large stones. I'm gratified and exhilerated to see him, without reservation or niceties, put the HRC in their collective place. More videos!

He is right of course, but ... (Below threshold)
Liberal Nitemare:

He is right of course, but there's no way the HRC will let him off the hook.

The HRC simply cant tolerate the challenge to its authority and still be effective.

In the end, he will be found guilty and punished with whatever club they have at thier disposal in order to preserve their status.

I sure wish Theo van Gogh c... (Below threshold)

I sure wish Theo van Gogh could have watched these videos. But he can't because he's dead. Killed by a coward islamofacist bastard that thought not a moment about free speech.

Mr. Levant just roused me o... (Below threshold)
Bungalowlife:

Mr. Levant just roused me off my hefty hiney to make a donation at www.ezralevant.com. He is fighting the good fight. Let's show him our support.

He will be duly punished fo... (Below threshold)
jpm100:

He will be duly punished for making these videos public.

I expect future inquisitions will be closed and probably sealed for several months after the commission is done with its findings.

I would rock if the government here had the balls to offer him asylum.

If anyone has a transcript ... (Below threshold)
mikem Author Profile Page:

If anyone has a transcript link, please post it for those of us who do not have speakers. The volume is too low for the quasi-speaker in the computer itself.

This is where liberals have... (Below threshold)
hermie:

This is where liberals have gained their power; through an unelected and unaccountable bureaucracy.

This is a warning to those of us in the US. Unless people like Levant and Steyn are given massive suppport, these HRCs will be established here by those on the Left who will seen its effectiveness.

Jay Tea: "Please tone it do... (Below threshold)
Drago:

Jay Tea: "Please tone it down a notch or three. You're generating a lot of heat, not much light."

Gee, you're right.

I apologize.

Next time the issue of unelected left-wing bureaucrats engaging in Orewellian Star-Chamber proceedings designed to stifle fundamental rights of non-lefties, I'll be sure to offer up some "light" and not "heat" by linking to Glenn Greenwald articles and taking gratuitious swipes at Newt Gingrich and Mark Steyn.

Thanks Jay, for your "even" and "reasoned" response to my "out of line" comments to Adrian's "on topic" post.

No one should believe these... (Below threshold)
jpm100:

No one should believe these bureaucrats are functioning without the elected government's permission.

Rule in Canada is quite absolute for whatever elected body is in charge. This commission exists directly whim of Alberta and/or the Federal Government.

However, the drivers are special interest groups and not typically the elected government. The elected government essentially turns over the reigns, in large part, to these groups.

Drago, you're wrong. Jay T... (Below threshold)

Drago, you're wrong. Jay Tea is right.

Adrian posted something relevant, if referencing the evil GG, and you went all personal sound and fury on him.

It might have made you feel good but too much self-pleasuring in public is unseemly.

Drago, here's an example of... (Below threshold)

Drago, here's an example of an uneven, unbalanced response:

Drago, your spewing is giving those of us on the correct side of the issue a bad rep. Go take your meds and come back when you're not frothing and spraying spittle all over the place.

Oh, and you might learn a smidgen or two about how to win arguments. Screaming names at your opponent just makes you look like an asshole. And we have enough assholes around here already (looking at some of the resident trolls); we don't need any more.

Cite a few examples of the egregiousness of the other side if you want to make your point. Throwing around random accusations at the first person who quotes someone you don't like (although there's certainly enough reason to dislike Greenwald) just makes you look bad and casts aspersions on those of us on the same side.

Count yourself lucky I didn't delete or disemvowel your comments.

So clean up your act, dipshit, or I'll ban your ass.

There. Gratuitous profanity, unnecessary insults, and a resort to a threat of abuse of authority, up to and including the ultimate sanction. Did I miss anything?

(For the record, the block-quoted section was purely for demonstrative purposes, and should not be taken as a valid statement -- merely an exercise in showing Drago the kind of action that would have merited his snide response. His previous comments will stand unaltered, and he is in no danger of being banned for anything he has said or done thus far.)

J.

I read somewhere that every... (Below threshold)

I read somewhere that everyone one who has ever been hauled before the Canadian HRC has been found "guilty". Always. No exceptions.

Kind of gives you a warm feeling, doesn't it?

The Albert HRC is nothing m... (Below threshold)
Piso Mojado:

The Albert HRC is nothing more than a Nazi Kangeroo Court. I'm surprised that the canucks put up with this crap.

Interesting that many on th... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Interesting that many on the right who are getting upset about this (rightly, I might add) are the same types who consistently decry the ACLU (STACLU, LGF, etc.) for just about everything. Of course the ACLU would be the first group to defend Levant were this happening here.

From Canada's Charter of Rights and Freedoms:

2. Everyone has the following fundamental freedoms:

(a) freedom of conscience and religion;
(b) freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communication;
(c) freedom of peaceful assembly; and
(d) freedom of association.

.......

The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms guarantees the rights and freedoms set out in it subject only to such reasonable limits prescribed by law as can be demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society.

Isn't having real freedom of speech guaranteed in the Constitution, and people eager to defend it, wonderful?

The ACLU gets badly on peop... (Below threshold)

The ACLU gets badly on people's nerves for perceived attacks on religion, or at least perceived attacks on Christianity. It *feels* like they're out to get us. The perception isn't that they argue that everyone is free to do their own thing, but that everyone is free from having to be aware of other people doing their own thing. Freedom from, rather than freedom of.

Freedom *from* isn't freedom at all, of course, but suppression.

I'm not insisting this is a fair expression of what they actually do.

I will say that I once heard an HLDA lawyer (Christian homeschooling legal defense) express the opinion that when you wanted a judge for a homeschooling rights case you wanted a former ACLU lawyer.

When it comes to the Rights guaranteed in our Constitution, it's not that different from the Canadian charter, only that it takes more than justifying the infringement. In the US the government has to prove, first, that their goals are necessary and properly the responsibility of the State and, second, that there is no other way to achieve them.

To violate religious freedoms for religiously based homeschoolers (which in the 1980's got parents sent to jail) for example, the State had to prove that it had a legitimate cause to guarantee education (I disagree, and I don't know what courts decided on that half of it) AND that they could do it no other way *except* to infringe religious freedoms. The fact that other ways are more difficult than requiring children to attend an approved classroom school is irrelevant.

It doesn't have to be *reasonable*.

It seems to me that Levant is probably doing what he's doing because if he, for one moment, acts like the actions and demands of the HRC are *reasonable* then he's ceded the entire question.




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