Saturday, March 30, 2013

Sometimes A Cheque Is Just A Cheque...

...And Sometimes It Is A Whole Lot More.

It turns out that after a year of investigations that cost millions and led to hundreds and hundreds of audits, only one charitable organization has been singled out by the Harper government for spending too much money on 'political activities'.

Kate Webb, who's been doing some fine work lately, has the story in Metro News:

...Environmental charities were widely reported to be the primary target of ramped up compliance measures after Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver said environmental and other “radical groups” were trying to undermine the national economy by blocking pipeline and other fossil fuel projects.

But Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) spokesman Philippe Brideau said after roughly 880 audits in the last year, the only charity whose status was revoked for exceeding limits on political activity was Physicians for Global Survival, a group dedicated to the promotion of nuclear disarmament.

A CRA audit found the organization was using 26 per cent of its resources for political activities, including a letter-writing campaign urging Prime Minister Stephen Harper, party leaders and MPs to support an international treaty banning nuclear weapons.

Several high-profile B.C.-based charities, including the David Suzuki Foundation andForestEthics, told Metro the CRA’s attention actually inspired them to become more politically active, because they realized they were not spending anywhere near the 10 per cent threshold...


A whole lot of folks on the Twittmachine have, quite rightly, been raising a ruckus about all the organizations that were unfairly smeared BEFORE the Harper government set up this witchhunty-type citizen repression machinery.

But I want to talk briefly about the group that was 'caught'.

Which is the 'Physicians for Global Survival'.

Because it is a group whose manifesto I very much agree with:

"Because of our concern for global health, we are committed to the abolition of nuclear weapons, the prevention of war, the promotion of nonviolent means of conflict resolution and social justice in a sustainable world."


With a mission statement like that I'd be upset if I was a contributor and found out that they were spending anything less than 26% of their revenue attempting to sway politicians and policy makers.

Which, tax receipt be damned, is why I just became a contributor.




West End Bob said...

Good on Physicians for Global Survival!

They sound like an excellent organization . . . .

Hugh said...

Good grief. Just after cutting out of the group addressing drought.

What an embarrassment.

Ed Seedhouse said...

Global health? Prevention of war?

Obviously these folks are communists.

Imagine them having the nerve to try to influence our government as if they were, um, citizens or something.


Gary E said...

I wonder if the Physicians For Global Survival was the only one of the 880 organizations that had a active letter writing campaign bombarding Herr Harper.

Norm Farrell said...

Richard Nixon tried to fire David C. Alexander because the Internal Revenue Service commissioner would not use the tax agency for political purposes.

After only 10 weeks at his job, the commissioner shut down the IRS branch that had been investigating critics of Nixon.

No similar Canadian hero at C.R.A.