VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – The Prime Minister seems to have taken disregard for expert opinion to a whole new level. From climate change on one end of the spectrum to the long gun registry on the other, at least Stephen Harper is an equal opportunity ‘ignorer.’
Michael Byers is an expert himself. A UBC political science professor, he holds a Canadian Research Chair and he’s a six-time author. Byers may just be the perfect person for Harper not to listen to.
Whether it’s supervised injection sites, prison sentences, or the gun registry, why does the Prime Minister not want to hear the advice of experts? It’s simple; he doesn’t like to change his mind. “I think it’s partly stubbornness. But the second factor, I think, is the Prime Minister is in a continual election campaign. He only has a minority government so he’s thinking very short term. He’s not thinking about policy, he’s thinking about the polls and how he might fare in an election,” Byers says.
He believes Harper feels the need to be seen as strong, focused and on an unswerving course. Byers points out Harper has actually never been briefed by government scientists — ever — on the issue of climate change.
With any issue, Byers says the Prime Minister should at least be informed so he can make a decision based on all the information.