03.08.2012 09:00 AM

About John Fryer

Norman Spector has known him for years, so too have many others who have a high regard for him. The suggestion that anyone would call a Member of the Order of Canada a “liar,” as the Campaign Research cabal have done, strikes me as inviting a lawsuit.

Here, from a regular commenter, is some further info about how John came to be invited to the Manning Centre vote-suprression discussion:

Actually, the Manning Centre promoted the campaign training school thing to their mailing list. One of our Green Party colleagues on the GPC Federal Council was a former Conservative-Reformer from Alberta, he received the promotional email, and forwarded it to a number of people (myself included) who were trying to professionalise the Green Party national campaign.

I blogged abouit it, and publicised it to the Green Party in general. John Fryer was Federal Council member for BC, and had just been made campaign Manager of Elizabeth May’s SGI Campaign in the pre-writ period. He was obviously preparing for the task, and enrolled himself in the Campaign School. You see, some of us wanted to transform the GPC voters list and conact database into a winning machine like CIMS, and start building a useful voter intention and issues based DB.

…the Manning Centre did not invite anybody in particular. I guess they figured if John had found out about it, he must be ‘true blue’…If you know John, then that is really funny. His entire life has been about Labour and Politics. While I do not know John Fryer very well, he has struck me as meticuloulsy honest and canny. If he said something happened, then it is true. If he merely suspected then he would have kept his mouth shut.

That is my opinion anyway, but at least it is formed with some pêrsonal knowledge about the person involved.


  1. Warren says:

    That’s true. But proving that Prof. Fryer has a substantial positive reputation – he’s worked with Liberal, Conservative and NDP governments – will be impossible to offset.

    • Mulletaur says:

      That will be for the criminal investigation to determine, Pumpkin, not you.

    • Philippe says:

      Problem is Gord, nobody believes anyone associated with your government anymore. Your governments’ repeated lies have predisposed us not to believe you by default. You either earn that trust back (which I seriously doubt will happen as you won’t change) or live with the fact that we’ve lost confidence in your truth-telling abilities based on past lies.

  2. Geoffrey Laxton says:

    Meanwhile, the Globe and Mail online features not one article about robocons today..

    The National Post seems to be the leader in running robocons through the ringer!
    Beyond robocalls: Voting irregularities marred Toronto-area vote in federal election, report says

    The Toronto Star seems to have gotten cynical:
    Hébert: Robocalls: Conservative support rock solid despite vote controversy

  3. pomojen says:

    Don’t forget Conrad Black and Brian Bullroney.

  4. que sera sera says:

    Ever diligent Gord, prudently testing the waters & drawing lines in the sand – articulating how low he can possibly go before escalating the personal risk factor.

    I suspect that is also taught at the Manning Center for Hypocrisy.

    • Ted B says:

      Another straw man argument, Gord?

      Who is using the courts for the latter?

      Seems to me it is only the Conservatives who have been in court: both as defendents in elections charges and in SLAPP lawsuits attempting to silence opposition (by Harper, Levant, now Campaign Research).

      • Ted B says:

        “Using the courts for the latter is an abuse of legal system more egregious than any of the alleged unethical practices.”

        That’s a straw man right there, Gord, unless someone is actually using the courts to do that.

        Is anyone using the courts to go after unethical behaviour, Gord?

      • que sera sera says:

        Odd how “let the public be the judge of unethical conduct” doesn’t appear to be an option in the ongoing Conservative persecution of Canadian citizen Adam Carroll……speaking of conflating ethical & criminal behaviors.

        Is it unethical to suck & blow at the same time, Gord?

  5. Patrick Deberg says:


    David Suzuki is not a liar. He is a gifted individual that is full of passion about the natural world. He is trying to bring to our attention what the world would look like if industry removed all the stops and had their way with the environment. Only a fruitcake or insurance salesman would think he is a danger to society. Steve Fonyo ran across Canada. He was a troubled individual but he paid what was owed. You have done nothing I have heard of. Alan Eagleson is a conservative so that is self explanatory.

    • Ted H says:

      David Suzuki is a well respected Canadian. I can’t think of any single one of the Conservative MP’s currently in Ottawa who could be regarded as “respected” by Canadians. Grudging acceptance of the fact that they managed to wangle themselves into government yes, but respect, certainly not.

    • Attack! says:

      wish granted

    • Ted B says:

      Example of his flat out lies, please.

      • Ted B says:

        I think you should grab a dictionary, Gord, and look up the meaning of “liar”. Being a hypocrite is not the same as being a liar, Gord. Some, like our PM, strive to excel at both, but they are not the same thing.

        Over 99% of climate scientists are convinced by the research and data that climate change and global warming are real. About 93-95% of climate scientists are convinced by the research and data that climate change is caused by human activity.

        People like Suzuki and Gore irk me when they latch onto a scientific issue. Their celebrity brings instant and widespread attention to whatever issue they focus on which is often critical, but they are not experts and get much wrong (and don’t live their own lives in angel white perfection) and so give as much ammunition to opponents who want to stick their heads in the sand as they give energy to the movement.

        And I take from your response that you actually have no example of Suzuki lying, despite your claim.

        Don’t be afraid of the fact-based world, Gord. Come join us sometime. Reality is its own reward.

      • smelter rat says:

        Of course the insurance industry would like us all to believe that global climate change is fiction. They know what’s coming, and they don’t want to have to pay out when the shit hits the fan.

      • Ted B says:

        99% is not bogus. And I’m excluding all of the non-climate scientists like Gore and Suzuki in that.

        Survey after survey of professionals in the field show consistently the same thing.

        You are right that even 1% doesn’t mean it’s a closed argument. Theoretically. Far more conservatives than that still believe in witches and creationism, so you will never get 100%.

        And, theoretically, new data could emerge which would change the scientific consensus.

        But the reality is that there really is in essence no one who studies and works in climate sciences for a living who disagrees.

        And so at the very very least, that means Suzuki isn’t lying when he says he agrees with them and believes them. Surely, even you can see the illiogic of claiming otherwise.

      • ottawacon says:


        If you actually look at what the insurance industry thinks, you will find that it scares the heck out of them – even assigning scenario probabilities, when the 3 basics are not real/slow change/catastrophic global change, it does not take a very big probability for the last one to drive prudent risk management.

    • que sera sera says:

      “Suzuki is a profiteer living off of scare tactics and flat out lies. He may be the greatest threat to the interests of Canadians who is himself a Canadian. His reputation is in decline – one day he will be seen to by most canadians as the charlatan that he is.”

      More and more people are saying that about Harper.

  6. Tdotlib says:

    Gord just likes to take breaks for all the hard work he’s doing selling insurance.

    I’m sure his Jubilee Medal is already in the mail.

    • Robin says:

      Convincing widows to buy term life or other insurance products they don’t need isn’t actually hard work, it’s parasitic.

      • Ted B says:

        Just because someone “from the other side” undertakes some activity or other, doesn’t mean that that activity is bad or wrong. It’s like saying all TV pundits are know-nothing morons and idiots who live in a fact-free world because Ezra Levant is a know-nothing moron and idiot who lives in a fact-free world. Ezra and Gord may be know-nothing morons and idiots who live in a fact-free world, but that doesn’t mean all TV pundits or life insurance salesmen/brokers are.

    • Jan says:

      I’m sure he’d get the Real Women nomination.

  7. sj says:

    Only somewhat related to the topic, I feel must share my David Suzuki story. One summer when I was working two jobs, one of which was waiting tables in a very high end hotel, Suzuki came in at lunch and was seated in my section. He asked to order off the breakfast menu. After walking back to the central hotel kitchen a good distance from the cafe to check if it was possible. I said we could do it. Then he ordered breakfast, but not actually something that was on the breakfast menu. I managed to convince the kitchen to make it anyway.

    But my treks to the kitchen meant I was neglecting my other tables and they got grumpy and left without tipping on some big orders.

    Suzuki munches down his breakie and leaves without tipping either. So whenever I see him telling us how to live a better life, I remember that he was staying in a very expensive hotel room but didn’t tip. That and he ordered white toast.

  8. Unintelligentia says:

    He’s a jumped-up fly geneticist.

  9. Doug Smith says:

    Looks like Fryer has completely backtracked after being warned by Campaign Research. Interesting.


    • bluegreenblogger says:

      Huh.. No he did not completely backtrack. Had you read his original letter you would see that he simply re-stated himself. Why would you pretend otherwise. He did not accuse anybody of illegal tactics in his letter to the editor, and he stated in his letter that the discussion was back and forth in a question and answer session. So the so called backtracking was nothing but a statement that he did not say the things that he did not say.

    • Philip says:

      Really going for broke, aren’t you Doug? Maybe the Campaign Research cabal could put their money where their mouth is and actually file the lawsuit. Or they could simply whinge on and on about it.

  10. Doug Smith says:

    Maybe someone should ask Fryer who said it if not CR reps? It sounds to be like a backtrack that’s meant to look like a non-backtrack, written by a lawyer.

    • bluegreenblogger says:

      I can only repeat if you want to comment on a letter and an apology, then you should read the letter and apology first. I am not a lawyer, but I know how to read English. I will paraphrase for you in nice simple words. In the original letter to the editor John Fryer said that after being trained on voter identification, there was a Q&A session where participants discussed ways of suppressing the opponents vote including impersonating the opposition and being rude and nasty. The apology letter penned by Fryer aplogises to the clients of CR if they are made uncomfortable by it, and states that he did not say in his letter that CR or the event organisers had anything to do with it. Got it now? Nice and simple, no? He did not accuse CR in the first place, and then wrote a letter pointing that out.

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