Friday 11 January 2019

Canada's liberal fascism

Justin Trudeau's brand of liberalism is a real curate's egg.

On the one hand, he has introduced ultra-nanny state policies like plain packaging, on the other hand he has legalised cannabis.

On the one hand, he has introduced compelled speech laws, on the other hand he has, er, legalised cannabis.

But this is next-level stuff...

Police in Canada can now demand breath samples in bars, at home

It may sound unbelievable, but Canada’s revised laws on impaired driving could see police demand breath samples from people in bars, restaurants, or even at home. And if you say no, you could be arrested, face a criminal record, ordered to pay a fine, and subjected to a driving suspension.

You could be in violation of the impaired driving laws even two hours after you’ve been driving. Now, the onus is on drivers to prove they weren’t impaired when they were on the road.

Canadians are now guilty unless they can prove their innocence, thereby overturning the most basic principle of justice. And that is not the only step towards the police state in this law...

Under the new law, police officers no longer need to have a “reasonable suspicion” the driver had consumed alcohol. Now, an officer can demand a sample from drivers for any reason at any time.

When I saw the headline, I hoped - and kind of assumed - that the facts were being exaggerated and that the law wasn't as bad as it seemed. So let's see what lawyers reckon...

“It’s ridiculous, it’s basically criminalizing you having a drink at your kitchen table,” Paul Doroshenko, a Vancouver criminal defence lawyer who specializes in impaired driving cases, told Global News.

Oh dear.

“The public has completely missed this one,” said Joseph Neuberger, a Toronto criminal defence lawyer. .. In an instance where someone was drinking in a public place, Doroshenko said it would be hard for someone to prove they weren’t impaired when they were driving earlier.

“If [the police] come and find you at the restaurant they can take you out of the restaurant despite the fact you’ve been drinking at the restaurant, maybe you weren’t going to drive away,” he said, arguing the rules are excessive.

“It is profoundly stupid, so most people assume it can’t be. But that’s what the law is now, you will see it happen — I guarantee it.”

Oh dear, oh dear.

“It’s a serious erosion of civil liberties,” said Toronto criminal defence lawyer Michael Engel, whose practice focuses almost exclusively on impaired driving cases.

Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear.

“We’re in a brave new world now,” said Engel.  

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