As you may recall, last summer a member of the War Resisters Support Campaign filed an Access to Information request, seeking to learn why a page about Canada welcoming Vietnam-era war resisters was removed from the CIC website.
He had to jump through many hoops, but eventually he received thousands of pages, most of them heavily redacted, that showed us how closely the government watches our campaign. And among those pages were emails containing links to this blog! We could clearly see that some CIC staffer was receiving the wmtc feed and reporting on Campaign activities. Even if you remember this, you might want to go back and read that old post: "internal documents show harper govt obsessed with war resisters". After all, I am the "principle blogger" for the "war deserts".
That was last summer. Fast-forward to a very recent wmtc post, in which I announced that we received a date to write our citizenship exam. I said:
This says our test is based on the old citizenship guide, but they may be using a form letter that was never updated. An earlier letter I received said our test will be based on the new guide.
Hm, what to do... Study both? "Before I write the test, could you please tell me if the test is based on the neoconservative wishful-thinking version of Canada, or the progressive wishful-thinking version?"
That post is dated April 26. On Friday, May 7, Allan had a voice mail waiting for him at work. It was the someone from the CIC, clarifying that we should study the new citizenship guide! What the...??
I assumed they first had tried to call us at home, but we've changed that phone number, and we must have listed Allan's work phone as the alternate contact. He's only there on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, so we didn't get the message until Friday.
But how did they know I had a question? They could only have learned that here, on wmtc.
The caller left a number, and we spoke this morning. She acknowledged that the letter contains old, incorrect information, "because we haven't updated it in the computer yet". (So what are you waiting for?)
I asked her how she knew about my question, since I hadn't contacted the CIC. She said someone forwarded her an email that had been forwarded "about 10 times" through the Ministry until it found its way to her desk. That email contained a link to "someplace where you were asking people which book you should use, and various people had answered your question, people were talking back and forth".
I asked if she could forward that email to me, but she said she is not allowed.
Wow! Not only is someone at CIC still reading this blog - and not just the war resisters posts - but he or she is so involved that she's attempting to help me, while still remaining anonymous. In a way it shows how thorough she is, and in some sense, impartial. But from another angle, it is downright creepy!