Till the middle part of the last decade, the Canadian punditariat was dominated by professional columnists who were socially, ideologically, and sometimes professionally, beholden to the academics, politicians, and old-school activists (from Jewish groups, in particular) who’d championed the human-rights industry since its inception in the 1960s.
But in the latter years of Liberal governance, a vigorous network of right-wing bloggers, led by Ezra Levant, began publicizing the worst abuses of human-rights mandarins, including the aforementioned Dean Steacy.
In absolute numbers, the readership of their blogs was small at first. But their existence had the critical function of building up a sense of civil society among anti-speech-code activists, who gradually pulled the mainstream media along with them.
In this sense, Mr. Levant deserves to be recognized as one of the most influential activists in modern Canadian history. (…)
[B]ureaucrats know that any censorious verdict they deliver instantly will be pounced upon by Mr. Levant and his blogging allies (including some at this newspaper), and thereby become a lightning rod for legislative reform.