12 February 2017

How LAC Implemented Trump's Agenda

In Canada we're accustomed to seeing news reports showing Canada ranking a bit behind Scandinavian but ahead of most G7 countries on measures of social development.
Nicka Smith, a genealogist and photographer,
wrote a blog post Why Genealogists Should Care About Trump’s Agenda pointing out that during the election campaign the now president proposed closure of two critical departments in the federal government, the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the National Endowment for Humanities (NEH).  It would cut funds for the operation of the National Digital Newspaper Program, and  Chronicling America, which offers over 11 million pages digitized and searchable online.
That would send the US back to where Canada is today, no national program for newspaper digitization. There is a patchwork of newspaper digitization: some excellent free local initiatives, such as for Victoria's British Colonist; some newspapers, like the Ottawa Journal, on pay sites; and some digitized as images only with no search capability.
Is Library and Archives Canada, the Canadian federal department that has lead responsibility in preserving and making available Canada's documentary heritage, proud to have implemented Donald Trump's agenda years before he came on the political scene?


Patti said...

Seriously? This is the crap you choose to post? Keep your politics to yourself. A genealogy blog is NO PLACE for it.

JDR said...

Patti: Please read the description of what's on this blog. My blog. You are under no obligation to visit.

Anonymous said...

This is exactly the RIGHT place to post information about the implications of governmental budgeting and cost-cutting initiatives on the availability of resources we genealogists use every day.

I don't want to see cutting edge programs like "Chronicling America" go away. If we lose access to our nation's history as seen through the eyes of the people who actually lived it, what will be eliminated next? Public libraries (that's what's happening in Scotland)? The Census records? The military service records of generations of our veterans going back to the Revolutionary War?

This is not party politics. I don't care who is making the proposals. I only care about the impact of the proposals on the national resources that belong to all of us -- to we, the people of the United States of America, our children and grandchildren, and the generations of our descendants yet unborn, who will want to know "Who am I?" "Where do I come from?" and "Where am I going?"

A few years ago, our Canadian cousins had to fight like you what to stop their government from sealing the census records forever. It was sites like this one that alerted them to the danger. To John and all the others who stand on guard against the loss of our heritage: Good job! Thanks, and please keep up the good work.

Celia Lewis said...

Interesting details, John. I agree that LAC needs to make a decision about maintaining our newspapers - often invaluable for historical, social, legal reasons, let alone for us genealogists. So far, by doing nothing, they seem to have made the decision to NOT maintain copies, which is rather sad!! Down in the States, I value the work done by a few individuals, such as Tom Tryniski (Fulton Postcards=Newspapers in NY). And similarly, BMD extracts done by David Johnson from New Brunswick newspapers. So valuable!

Gail B said...

I agree we need as much data, facts as possible, in order to proceed reasonably with any or our governments. The last Canadian government dismissed scientists, the long form census sociologists rely on to inform Stats Canada. Data, facts, graphs, all chart societies progress in one way of another. Not just academics, but historians and yes, genealogists need accurate, sourced information in order to do our work.

I agree with anonymour and Celia Lewis. Please continue your informed and informative information-sending, John.


Anonymous said...

Thank you for posting it John, and regrets re Patti's posting. It is one in a long list of fears re Trump's presidency. I have noticed during my ancestral research the inequality in monies spent on preserving and digitalizing historical information between US and Canada. In the US it has often been up to the individual state but has generally been more than what the LAC has managed.

Anonymous said...

Well done John! Cheers, BT