Interventions in the House of Commons
 
 
 
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View Matthew Dubé Profile
NDP (QC)
View Matthew Dubé Profile
2018-05-28 17:35 [p.19765]
Mr. Speaker, there is no doubt that when it comes to the rapidly evolving information infrastructure in this country and throughout the world, these are the issues that come up. It was quite timely during our study that these things were in the news, such as Cambridge Analytica and all these types of things.
I will acknowledge that on the one hand, they bring to light the fact that we need to be prepared to deal with interventions from foreign state actors and parties operating in bad faith, and even companies, and do these kinds of updates and ask more of the private sector, as my colleague said. The other side of that coin, and another part of what this legislation deals with, is this. Those who know Alan Moore's graphic novel from the 1980s, Watchmen, will remember the question the book poses, which is “Who watches the watchmen?” That is the question we have before us.
Ultimately, CSE will say its duty is to protect Canadians and protect our information structure. No one is calling that into question, but at the end of the day, it is not a blank cheque to operate with impunity and without accountability. While the government may say that its new review mechanisms provide that accountability, it just is not enough when we look at these concepts in law that are not clear and when we look at these concepts brought before committee, before us as parliamentarians, and that were never part of the public consultations undertaken by both the government and our committee. We tried to make amendments to fix this. None of these amendments would have undermined CSE's ability to do its work. They would have protected Canadians' rights and freedoms, and that is the opportunity the government missed.
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