Baird said it's Canada's latest foray into the field of "direct diplomacy," a strategy to bypass repressive regimes and reach out directly to people in countries that do not allow free debate.
Why does this sound familiar? Oh riiight:
"We'll go over the heads of the members of Parliament; go over the heads, frankly, of the Governor General; go right to the Canadian people."
I guess it's a good thing Baird's consistent, but it strikes me as concerning that he wants to treat Canada's elected Parliament and the government of Iran.
The connective tissue seems to be that Baird wants to talk directly to people without peer critique of his message.
There are governments out there who block people's access to information, monitor them excessively and penalize them if they speak against the prevailing ideology.
Then there are governments who simply stop the collection and analysis of information, but still monitor people excessively and penalize them for speaking against the prevailing ideology by firing, defunding or simple intimidation.
It strikes me that all around, we have too much talking to and talking at going on; instead of actual communication, messaging and spin are the order of the day.
That has to change. It's going to change. It's changing already.
Do you hear the people sing? (in a unified chorus, no less)
I just hope that the John Bairds of the world are listening.