CBC fights the culture war

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What’s this? A CBC story about huge guns, a baby, and Santa?

From Scottsdale Arizona? What is the relevance?

Oh, those Americans and their guns. “Is it appropriate?”, CBC asks.

Well, no. But, for a different reason. The long-gun registry vote is in the news as the Conservatives uphold a long-standing promise to their base to eliminate the registration of legal rifles and shotguns. Amendments were voted upon this week and the final vote is upcoming. What better time for the CBC to remind Canadians what’s at stake?

Every gun featured in the Christmas card photo is prohibited in Canada.

Yesterday, the NDP had to walk back an attack ad on the Conservatives that featured a gun that is restricted in Canada and is thus would have to be registered anyway despite the scrapping of the long-gun registry.

This isn’t the first time the CBC has played politics in the long-gun registry debate. On the eve of Candice Hoeppner’s Private Member’s Bill defeat, the CBC ran this conspiracy theory disguised as an investigative report into links between the Conservative government, it’s activists and the Gun-lovin’ American NRA. CBC provided a 10 year old clue that the NRA once produced a commercial that aired in the US and was available to Canadians! Also, they helped fun a pamphlet for a Canadian long-gun advocate, also 10 years ago.

We consider Americans and their huge military-grade machine-guns.

We also consider the Canadian debate about the registration of long-guns.

If one were against the dismantling of the long-gun registry, one would be irresponsible to suggest that Americans are not only trying to influence the debate but it would also be irresponsible to create a scarecrow argument against guns which are already illegal in Canada. How much of this debate is honest? And what element of dishonesty is being driven by the CBC?

  • Gabby in QC

    “… that was an opinion piece …”
    Wasn’t Susan Murray’s an opinion piece too? You like that one fine. And aren’t your posts opinion pieces too?  If well argued, an opinion piece can be as credible as a multiplication table.

    “… think of the argument you’re trying to make here – that journalists AREN’T professional, can’t be relied upon to do a proper job, don’t have to be ethical… ”
    You really must desist in trying to put words in my mouth.
    In the first place, there’s a difference between acting in a professional manner — a taxi driver can act in a professional manner — and being the member of an accredited profession, like the ones listed here:
    http://www.cicic.ca/672/accredited-professional-programs-in-canada.canada

    Secondly, I guess you missed the part where I wrote “Some [i.e. journalists] practice their craft very honourably, others not so much.” Geez, I hate to have to quote myself!

    I’ll have to look into RTNDA … but “state broadcaster” reminds me of TASS (Telegraph Agency of the Soviet Union) and Pravda. No, I’m not saying the CBC is like them, but I prefer variety rather than sole sourcing. 

  • Anonymous

    See, the thing is, life would be so much simpler if people, be they
    journalists, pundits, simple commenters on blogs, or politicians —
    people who pretend & protest they’re non-partisan / not ideological
    – if they were to admit up front that they are indeed partisan and
    ideological.

    You’re arguing that journalists can’t do a fair and balanced job because of their leanings, are you not? I’m arguing the counter – that most journalists at the major broadcasters can  be professional about the job of reporting. I would argue further that the biggest source of bias is the head office, which is why an arms-length broadcaster is furthest removed from coercion by government or corporate interests.

    Britain Ireland, Germany, Netherlands, Sweden, Austria, Italy, Japan… have state-funded broadcasters. The US does not. Guess which country’s news viewers have the deepest distrust of their news media?

  • Anonymous

    See, the thing is, life would be so much simpler if people, be they
    journalists, pundits, simple commenters on blogs, or politicians —
    people who pretend & protest they’re non-partisan / not ideological
    – if they were to admit up front that they are indeed partisan and
    ideological.

    You’re arguing that journalists can’t do a fair and balanced job because of their leanings, are you not? I’m arguing the counter – that most journalists at the major broadcasters can  be professional about the job of reporting. I would argue further that the biggest source of bias is the head office, which is why an arms-length broadcaster is furthest removed from coercion by government or corporate interests.

    Britain Ireland, Germany, Netherlands, Sweden, Austria, Italy, Japan… have state-funded broadcasters. The US does not. Guess which country’s news viewers have the deepest distrust of their news media?

  • Gabby in QC

    I already conceded the point that the Polytechnique murders were co-opted by the feminist movement. If all the victims had been males, we might not be holding candlelight vigils, but there would probably have been the same demands to tighten up firearms controls. 

    The commemorations have become part of our culture. We — a general we — seemingly feel more connected to someone we’ve never met than to someone who lives next door. Why, I don’t know. Look at the outpouring of emotion over the deaths of some celebrities, with attendant flowers, poems, tears, etc. 

    Not to belittle such a visible manifestation of grief … but isn’t the Highway of Heroes a somewhat similar outward expression of grief over the death of a stranger? 

    Anyway, I think I’ve said about all I have to say on this topic … thanks for your input.

  • DougM

    Well put – I agree with the co-opting point – it bothers me because it degrades their memory.    The outpouring over celebrities also bothers me – in part.    Lady Diana had done some pretty remarkable things and used her status to gain results – I have no problem with people grieving her – her life and accomplishments were public.  Jack Layton or Michael Jackson?  Gimme a break.   Highway of Hero’s is a different one for me and I’d have to give it some thought.  One one hand, those guys (and Capt Goddard) died giving their life for the Country and our beliefs and values – so yes.  On the other hand, I was in the military for almost 36 years and so I’m very close to that – it would be difficult to separate the emotion from losing a brother in arms enough to make an objective opinion.

  • Gabby in QC

    For Kenn2 — my reply here, because I don’t like ever-skinnier responses.

    “You’re arguing that journalists can’t do a fair and balanced job because of their leanings, are you not?”
    No, I’m not. It’s not their leanings it’s the fact they don’t admit to having ANY leanings at all. I’m arguing that many media personalities do not admit to having a particular political point of view and that even though they deny having that POV, it comes through to the audience, whether they — the media — want to admit it or not. And that particular political POV is primarily anti-conservative. Some of them excel at what they do — it’s just that what they do lacks objectivity. 

    When I first started commenting on blogs, I dug up some studies showing that the majority of journalists lean left. I would need to dig for that info once again.

    See, especially now with the advent of blogging and social media, the lines between strict reporting of the day’s or week’s events and editorializing  i.e. the media personalities’ reaction to and opinion on events — those lines have been blurred.

    The real reporter should be using the 5 Ws, with neutral or denotative language. Just the bare facts.
    The ersatz reporter appeals to emotions, sometimes uses ridicule, and connotative language, so that some reports actually come across as editorials. 

    To compound the problem, some accusations on either side of the political spectrum confuse the role of the reporter with that of the op-ed writer, the editorialist, the pundit, the polemicist, etc. all of whom are paid to give their opinions.

  • Anonymous

    I think we’re talking past each other. One more brief try…

    It’s not their leanings it’s the fact they don’t admit to having
    ANY leanings at all. I’m arguing that many media personalities do not
    admit to having a particular political point of view and that even
    though they deny having that POV, it comes through to the audience,
    whether they — the media — want to admit it or not. And that
    particular political POV is primarily anti-conservative. Some of them
    excel at what they do — it’s just that what they do lacks objectivity.

    Let’s step back and examine some context. Consider the following:
    - the majority of journalists have at least some post-secondary education and it’s usually in journalism or other (… wait for it…) “liberal arts”. Joke aside, you know what I mean – humanities, history, poli-sci, languages.
    - the majority of university-educated people, especially in the liberal arts, poll as being center or a little to the left of mainstream opinion. Make of that what you will, but it’s generally accepted as fact.

    If we accept your argument as presented, in this context…. it’s game over, you have won. Any given journalist is likely to be left of center; the whole media is pinko, storm the barricades, off with their heads. Balanced media is impossible.

    If you’re still with me…
    - most journalists, especially the senior ones at the larger outlets, are professionals. maybe not to the letter of the law, but certainly in the sense that they know how to do their job objectively and ethically, that there are commonly held principles and practices.

    It’s my contention that the majority of experienced reporters, at CBC or elsewhere, are competent journalists, whose professionalism overcomes their own personal opinions. We can waste 3 lifetimes calling out little things like these stupid gun-nut Christmas cards, but there is really no incontrovertible evidence that CBC News is, generally speaking, incompetent or significantly and unfairly biased.

    You may think so (and others have been persuaded to think so), but it ain’t so. If you lean right, a centrist will look lefty.

    Last comment (to anyone). Please give examples of an unbiased journalist or show or publication.  Who represents the ideal? Bonus marks for explaining how their lack of bias is evident.

    I’m done. LizJ, how bout a pithy comment to close the thread out?

  • Shorter Kenn2

    Keep funding what I want to hear!

  • DougM

    If you actually had a handle on how to read TV ratings or market share

    Pass on what I missed and I’ll let the folks at UBC know they’re deficient, the guy at the front of the class was the marketing guy for Starbucks and Irish spring campaigns – where did you get our maketing education?

    you all haven’t yet been able to manufacture significant opposition to the CBC.

    Lol – well there’s a lot more of it out there than just on this board,  strange you should get so breathless over it then…

    after your  recent “Marie Antoinette” stance on Toronto’s issues.  Subsidizing YOUR friends and causes is just fine, apparently

    You told us that; a. there was no fat in Toronto,  B. Toronto desperately needs more libraries than NY, and every other publicly paid service yet acknowledged Toronto was in a deficit to the tune of $770M.  It has the largest municipal tax base in the country – when every other city in the country needs money, they raise taxes – that’s what you lefties always like to do.  A bit different when its you paying, what?.   I don’t care how you do it, but just don’t look outside city limits for the money.  As to subsidies, hell yeah.  Lets cut them to the oil industry and see what happens at gas at $6 a liter.  And while we’re at it, we’d expect those cars coming out of Oshawa,  Toronto and Windor to be sold tous out here at half price too.  After all, what’s good for the goose…. 

  • Anonymous

    ooo, my bad. Have your UBC friend pop by and back up your argument, because you haven’t.

    a)  close enough.
    b) ok, I’ll give you libraries. now, what about public transit, regional transit for the millions who commute to Toronto, the support of the many immigrants who flock to Toronto, social assistance and housing which was downloaded onto Toronto, the cost of the botched “megacity” amalgamation which was dumped on Toronto, no plebiscite or anything. And so on.

    Thing is, enough taxes are being raised, it’s just that they leave the city for Ottawa and Queen’s Park, and never return. To the tune of many billions a year. Of the industrialized nations, Canada provides the least federal support of urban infrastructure.

    Lets cut them to the oil industry and see what happens at gas at $6 a liter.

    This is when I knew you’re completely out to lunch. Canada’s oil industry subsidies don’t much influence our at-the pump price … not when we can and do still buy OPEC oil at market price.

    Oil is probably the most in-demand resource in the world, oil companies are making copious profits even in a worldwide recession… and you think the companies need subsidies? Socialism for corporate profit, free-market discipline for Toronto?

    It is simply insane that in a free market, you have to subsidize a company to find and sell the world’s most demanded product, that we happen to have alot of. Of course I realize that realpolitik kicks in , and there’s the unspoken necessity of supplying the US with oil at OPEC prices, even though our cost to produce is higher than OPEC’s. Not quite what we’d hoped for with NAFTA…

    In case you didn’t know, the average car price is damn near cost, anyway. Any lower and the auto makers would be subsidizing you. Nice rhetorical flourish, tho.

  • Anonymous

    (omg – it’s mini-me!)

    Actually, it’s more to do with stop destroying things.

  • Gabby in QC

    Sorry, I don’t do “pithy” — which explains my moniker.

    I was going to let you have the last word, but something discussed yesterday & today on the radio changed my mind.First of all …• In your reply, you wrongly assume that I question journalists’ education and/or their competence. Like in any walk of life, there are some who excel and some who suck, to use the vernacular, independent of their political leaning, their education, their training, or their experience. What I question and will continue to question is journalists’ and the entire media industry’s objectivity. That lack of objectivity leads to a concurrent lack of accuracy. Allow me to cite just two very recent and perhaps trivial examples, but indicative of the prevailing mind-set among some media.1. A Quebec Service Canada bureaucrat (Marc Simoneau) sent out a memo telling staff that no Christmas decorations be put up in public areas in the Service Canada Montreal headquarters, and that decorations should be limited to “private” work areas, away from the public’s eyes.Yesterday, two (anglo) local talk shows expressed their outrage, their blame directed partly at the bureaucrat but mostly at the government. Of course, opposition MPs got in on the act, thundering their disapproval during Friday’s QP, Minister Finley becoming their target. Read Denis Coderre’s and Alex Boulerice’s “questions” here: http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?Language=E&Mode=1&Parl=41&Ses=1&DocId=5300715This morning, on Rad-Can, the blame was directed squarely at the PM, as if that directive had come down directly from him.So, from the bureaucrat’s desk, to Minister Finley’s. to the PM’s desk went the silly memo.Not only is it ridiculous to suggest that Stephen Harper (shame on that anti-Christmas Grinch!) sent out that directive, but how do those making those assumptions reconcile that with their usual contention that he’s an ultra-religious Evangelical?2. The second example involves humorists and the role of political satire (part of the media at large). The example is from Radio-Canada, involving a discussion among the appropriately-named moderator Joël Le Bigot, comedian/actor/journalist/professor/and radio & TV host Marc Laurendeau, and La Presse political cartoonist Serge Chapleau, creator of the satirical TV show on current affairs Et Dieu créa Laflaque. I have no quarrel with humorists deflating politicians’ egos and pointing out what they think are societal ills. But the gist of that trio’s discussion — Chapleau’s was more nuanced — was that the torrent of scorn pelting politicians wasn’t sustained enough to bring about change. Of course, never mind that the change they seek is not necessarily what the rest of the population wants or needs and never mind the kind of character assassination their derision causes.Perhaps the media should keep this in mind:“In things a moderation keep; Kings [and the media] ought to shear, not skin, their sheep.” Robert Herrick

  • Gabby in QC

    Oh, for pete’s sake!

    Paragraphs are important! Let me use them!!!

  • Anonymous

    (you know, you can edit your post to adjust spacings etc, right?)

    I appreciate your anecdotes, but…

    1) Talk radio isn’t journalism. It’s usually just populism, and geared to provoke. And it’s practiced almost exclusively by private broadcasters. So, nothing to do with journalism,  the CBC or the attacks on it.

    2) Satirists have no duty other than to stay on the good side of libel and obscenity laws. Oh, and to make us laugh. Occasionally, they draw our attention to a genuine problem. Again, nothing to do with journalism.

    Same for that interview show. It has no other purpose than to engage the listener’s interest, and the personalities are expected to do so. You already knew how the interviewer slants. Sharp opinions and controversy are staples of the format. Still not journalism…

    I fear you haven’t really advanced your argument. But I clearly get that you feel that most of the media isn’t making any effort to reach YOU and your interests. Well, the world always fawns over the young, but there is programming out there for the mature, thinking mind… one just has to dig a little harder. You’ll find more thoughtful and positive programming on the alternative non commercial networks like PBS, TVO (Ontario) … and CBC, especially Radio One.

  • Anonymous

    (you know, you can edit your post to adjust spacings etc, right?)

    I appreciate your anecdotes, but…

    1) Talk radio isn’t journalism. It’s usually just populism, and geared to provoke. And it’s practiced almost exclusively by private broadcasters. So, nothing to do with journalism,  the CBC or the attacks on it.

    2) Satirists have no duty other than to stay on the good side of libel and obscenity laws. Oh, and to make us laugh. Occasionally, they draw our attention to a genuine problem. Again, nothing to do with journalism.

    Same for that interview show. It has no other purpose than to engage the listener’s interest, and the personalities are expected to do so. You already knew how the interviewer slants. Sharp opinions and controversy are staples of the format. Still not journalism…

    I fear you haven’t really advanced your argument. But I clearly get that you feel that most of the media isn’t making any effort to reach YOU and your interests. Well, the world always fawns over the young, but there is programming out there for the mature, thinking mind… one just has to dig a little harder. You’ll find more thoughtful and positive programming on the alternative non commercial networks like PBS, TVO (Ontario) … and CBC, especially Radio One.

  • Gabby in QC

    “you know, you can edit your post to adjust spacings etc, right?“
    No, actually I can’t. That function is apparently available only to those who sign up with Disqus. I usually compose my comments off-line, then copy & paste them here. Sometimes they come out like I’ve written them, with paragraphs & all, other times not, despite the fact I do the same thing. To paraphrase the Bard (with abject apologies to him): 
    “The fault, dear Brutus, is not in my formatting, But in the layout, to which I’m but an underling.”

    I’ll address the rest of your reply later.

  • Gabby in QC

    Better late than never …

    1. “Talk radio isn’t journalism …”
    I never said it was. I appreciate your efforts to “educate” me, but being a remonstrant pupil, may I remind you that I alluded to “the media at large”? Not “at large” as in “The prisoner escaped, he’s at large” but as in “as a whole” or “in a general way.” Maybe you would have understood if I’d used the term “mass media”?

    And the rest of your #1 lesson? The CBC’s Power & Politics, the At Issue panel, Cross Country CheckUp are three examples of “talk” shows, although not all three allow for immediate audience participation/reaction, except on their websites. Have you never heard of CPAC’s This Week and Goldhawk?

    2. “Same for that interview show. It has no other purpose than to engage the listener’s interest, and the personalities are expected to do so. You already knew how the interviewer slants. Sharp opinions and controversy are staples of the format. Still not journalism…”
    Gee, such harsh criticism of Power & Politics, CTV’s Question Period and Power Politics! I haven’t seen enough episodes of Global’s The West Block to be able to include it in the group.

    “I clearly get that you feel that most of the media isn’t making any effort to reach YOU and your interests.”
    Finally! An admission that the conservative POV is not reflected in many media outlets, be they public or private. That’s my and many conservatives’ beef with CBC, isn’t it? We pay for it through our taxes but we don’t see ourselves reflected as a part of Canada, except in a negative way, despite the CBC’s stated mission:
    http://www.cbc.radio-canada.ca/speeches/19990421.shtml 
    “At that time, the government wanted to create a place where Canadians from all regions and all walks of life could tell their stories to each other; a place where all Canadians could also discover the world. In a word, a mirror of who and what we are, and a window on the world. …
    We must offer Canadians something different—something they can identify with. …”

    And  http://www.cbc.radio-canada.ca/docs/policies/journalistic/xml/policies.asp 
    “To reflect diversity
    We are committed to reflecting accurately the range of experiences and points of view of all citizens. All Canadians, of whatever origins, perspectives and beliefs, should feel that our news and current affairs coverage is relevant to them and lives up to our Values. …”

    Anyway, whether left or right wing, we all view events through our own prism/world view. As I’ve said before, it would be far simpler if everyone, including the media, admitted to having one.

    And now, I’m done with this topic. 

  • Anonymous

    Well, I tried. We’re still talking past each other.

    Finally! An admission that the conservative POV is not reflected in many
    media outlets, be they public or private. That’s my and many
    conservatives’ beef with CBC, isn’t it?

    You and others have NEVER answered what “reflecting the conservative POV” would look like. What would make you happy??

    (For myself, I only want truth and objectivity from my national broadcaster… if I wanted my own POV, I’d check a mirror)

    CBC’s Power & Politics, the At Issue panel, Cross Country CheckUp…   – Hey, those aren’t anything like the talk radio example you posted.

    Power & Politics, CTV’s Question Period.

    .. and these too are NOTHING like the interview show you just complained about. Your argument is squirmier than a bored 3-year-old.

    In the past couple of weeks I’ve listened to several respectful and extended conversations with: David Wilkinson (former US ambassador to Canada), Peter Kent, David Frum, Chuck Stroll… all on CBC Radio.  Not what I’d expect from a broadcaster with a Liberal , anti-US bias.

    Nobody here or elsewhere has yet successfully demonstrated that CBC’s journalism (aka reporting and presenting the news) is anything other than professional, objective, truthful. Pointing to a few opinion pieces you disliked then claiming that “all CBC is biased” is nothing more than  parroting a demonstrably false claim.

  • DougM

    ooo, my bad. Have your UBC friend pop by and back up your argument, because you haven’t.

    First, there’s a difference between being bad and obtuse – I don’t see you as bad.  Second, he was not my “friend”, he was the Prof and while I undertstand you see him as incompetant becuase he didn’t come from the “Center of the Universe”, his experience and success is worlds above yours – so I’ll take his definition before I take the one that…Uhh…you never gave.

    As for Toronto’s problems – reduce librairies by half – Leverage businesses like Calgary did to pay for a central building for the addicts, homeless etc.  If the Mega city isn’t working – vote it out – has the nanny state robbed you of free will?  As for the downloading – welcome to Paul Martin’s economics, though he wasn’t entirely wrong – if you want a service you have to pay for it.

    As far as transit etc goes, welcome to reality – ever since the “Last Spike” was driven (look it up) and maps were readily available most have known we live in a country about 5000kn across – I cringe everytime I hear half-wits comparing us to coutnries you can ride across on a bike in a day.  Toronto faces the same problem in that regard that Vancouver and every other city does.  Solutions (for all cities) will not come via the Tooth Fairy (Feds) but will have to be dealt with my the municipal government hired to do so.  If you want the Feds to do it- get rid of municpal Governments.

  • DougM

    http://www.friends.ca/news-item/8845
    For years, CBC was the go-to source for TV news in Canada, and “The
    National” was the uncontested ratings leader. But it has slipped
    dramatically over the past 15-to-20 years as its commercial rivals carve
    into its share.
    This fall, CTV’s “CTV National News” at 11 p.m. had an average audience of 1.2 million, up 37% from last fall.
    Even Global, a perennial also-ran in the news sweepstakes, has assumed a
    much stronger position. Its “Global National” had an average aud of
    979,000 this fall, up 23%, beating “The National’s” average aud of
    477,000, which is down more than 20% on last fall.

    Note that unlike yourself, I actually went to a source friendly to the CBC to get this – so you very clearly haven’t a clue of what you’re talking about  -  maybe you should have finished your education before you grew such a large ego. And that, my friend is “market share”

  • Anonymous

    If the Mega city isn’t working – vote it out – has the nanny state robbed you of free will?

    No, gerrymandering did. With the addition of the suburbs, there’s now a stalemate between the city core and the “i’m ok jack” suburbs.

  • Anonymous

    That my friend is incomplete information. It’s just one time slot,  makes no mention of absolute share (which would show how everyone’s slice has been eroded by all the cable options), and focuses just on changes from 2008 to 2009.

    I can’t yet link to a pie chart showing a true picture of share, averaged out, with the incursion of cable, PVRs and the internet.

    And good numbers are increasingly hard to come by. But you knew all this already, o tv market guru.

  • Gabby in QC

    « “CBC’s Power & Politics, the At Issue panel, Cross Country CheckUp… “  - Hey, those aren’t anything like the talk radio example you posted.
    “Power & Politics, CTV’s Question Period.”
    .. and these too are NOTHING like the interview show you just complained about. »
    How do you know? Which talk radio program was it? Which interview show? You know only one side of the equation, so you can’t really say with such certainty they’re “NOTHING like” the examples I gave. 

    “Your argument is squirmier than a bored 3-year-old.”
    And as usual, you revert to dismissive condescension.
    But on this we agree, we’re definitely done.

  • Anonymous

    never mind “how I know” … was I right or not?

  • Gabby in QC

    On Power & Politics today, one segment focused on the Conservatives’ survey in Irwin Cotler’s riding, asking constituents whom they would vote for in the event Mr. Cotler resigns. During QP, Peter Van Loan termed it a freedom of speech issue.

    During the P & P show, Solomon pointed out to Bob Rae the Conservatives’ defence of such a survey: there’s often speculation about politicians’ future, usually widely covered by the media. Rae vehemently said NO, that never happens.

    Well, either Mr. Rae doesn’t read many reports/columns or else he’s got some of the Pinocchio syndrome he accuses others of having.

    I tried posting these reminders about some such speculation at Susan Delacourt’s blog, but was unsuccessful. 

    (I provide no links to avoid funny formatting) ”Liberals want Peter MacKay to come clean on exit plansJANE TABERGlobe and Mail UpdatePosted on Friday, November 12, 2010 8:50AM ESTWill he stay or will he go? Continually cut out of the action by his own Prime Minister, the Defence Minister has been dogged by speculation this week that he is ready to jump ship for a prestigious Bay Street law firm. …”John Ibbitson and Chantal Hebert wrote similar stories around the same time.”At pivotal moment for military, MacKay is grilled about his futureJOHN IBBITSONOTTAWA— From Thursday’s Globe and MailPublished Wednesday, Nov. 10, 2010 10:18PM EST… And yet his Defence Minister, Peter MacKay, spent part of Wednesday evening fending off questions as to whether he has had talks with a Bay Street law firm to quit the government early in the new year. …””Hébert: MacKay the latest to quack in lame duck cabinetPublished On Fri Nov 12 2010Even before he had to fend off rumours of an imminent departure from federal politics on Wednesday, Peter MacKay already had some key attributes of a lame duck minister. …”Then there was this …”Fact Check: Debunking rumour Harper ineligible to runPhilip Mascoll, Special to CTV.caDate: Thursday Apr. 21, 2011 7:17 AM ETPrime Minister Stephen Harper is eligible to be a candidate in the May 2 election and to seek the country’s top political office again, despite the vote of no confidence and finding of contempt against his government by the House of Commons, despite rumours circulating to the contrary. …”And this from theobserver.ca”Judge rumours swirl, but Toews says he’ll seek re-electionPosted 3 years agoA senior federal cabinet minister says he plans to run in the next election and denies he’s being pushed off Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s team. …”So, contrary to Bob Rae’s assertions to the contrary, the gossip & rumour mill are active on all fronts.

    Having said that, here’s what I posted on Dec. 2 on the Irwin Cotler riding issue.
    The Conservatives have four years of governing ahead of them, so they should lay off the rumour mill and innuendo. Leave those tactics to the opposition and concentrate on governing. However, the opposition and their buddies in the press gallery often spread all sorts of rumours about the Conservatives. BUT just because THEY sink to that level it doesn’t mean the Conservatives should sink to that same scummy level.

  • Gabby in QC

    Well, I see I wasn’t able to avoid the funny formatting …

  • Gabby in QC

    “never mind “how I know” … was I right or not?”
    No, you aren’t. 
    Heh. I never figured you for someone seeking Oprah-esque validation.

  • Anonymous

    You described the shows pretty clearly.  Since you haven’t now named them, I guess I’ll die … unvalidated.  Or not.

  • Gabby in QC

    “I guess I’ll die …”
    Melodramatic, no?

  • Anonymous

    It’s called “push-polling”, where the survey isn’t intended to measure opinion, it’s intended to create opinion – in this case creating the impression that Cotler intends to resign.

    Yes it’s considered a dirty trick.

  • DougM

    In case you didn’t know, the average car price is damn near cost, anyway.

    Yuppers – that’s why they manage to sell them for 20-30% less just 100 miles south of you – and pay the Government back 7 Billion (that’s with a B) within 20 months of being “bankrupt”.     Razor thin margins those.

  • DougM

    In case you didn’t know, the average car price is damn near cost, anyway.

    Yuppers – that’s why they manage to sell them for 20-30% less just 100 miles south of you – and pay the Government back 7 Billion (that’s with a B) within 20 months of being “bankrupt”.     Razor thin margins those.

  • DougM

    But you knew all this already, o tv market guru

    YOu won’t find numbers – pie chart, gant chart or any other to prove something which only exists in your mind.   And Market share is a commonly used and understood term, frequently utilized in the press – one hardly has to be a “Guru” to understand it – so its not that I’m that brilliant – its that you’re that dense.

  • DougM

    But you knew all this already, o tv market guru

    YOu won’t find numbers – pie chart, gant chart or any other to prove something which only exists in your mind.   And Market share is a commonly used and understood term, frequently utilized in the press – one hardly has to be a “Guru” to understand it – so its not that I’m that brilliant – its that you’re that dense.

  • Anonymous

    We’re splitting hairs on terminology.

    If your point is that considering just over-the-air TV broadcasters, the CBC has lost share of that viewership over the last 20 years, well, sure. OK. Global grew alot during that period and CTV brought their ‘A’ game finally, stealing Lloyd Robertson along the way.

    My point is that over the same 20 years, the viewers’ options exploded – cable, Internet, PVRs – and the audience for over-the-air TV has gone down, so you’re crowing about increased ‘share’ of a shrinking market. The private broadcasters still lost viewers over that 20 year period.

    And anyway – so what? Pop-tarts outsell broccoli. Should broccoli leave the market?

    The campaign to kill the CBC is a small-minded, ideological jihad, and all this after-the-fact flailing around for justification cannot hide that fact.

  • DougM

    So you contend that the overall market is imploding, the CBC share is decreasing and yet you still want to spend 1.16 billion on it?  And you think the reasonable ones are “Jihadists?  And they say dinosuars died becuase they coulldn’t adapt.

  • Anonymous

    /So you contend that the overall market is imploding, the CBC share is decreasing and yet you still want to spend 1.16 billion on it? And you think the reasonable ones are “Jihadists? And they say dinosuars died becuase they coulldn’t adapt. /

    I initially took you for a thinking person, but your responses in this thread have me wondering.

    Do you genuinely think that by showing that for ONE time slot, CBC TV lost some share in 2009, you have provided a water-tight case for the dissolution of the entire CBC?

    Fuck the forum, this is between us. You are putting your honourable service to Canada, and the supposed integrity behind that, to support an utterly partisan, mean-spirited and commercially-fomented jihad against an organization that has served Canada well.

    Even now, with CTV and Global providing a high standard of news reporting, the CBC still kicks their ass for original research and for pursuing difficult stories.Remove the CBC, and the Canadian commercial networks would drop back to 10 minutes of nightly news mostly ripped from CNN.

    And nowhere do you acknowledge that the CBC is alot more than the TV
    news you may disagree with. Assuming you’ve done anything more than just
    go along with the mob.

    Dr Suzuki’s “Nature of Things” tonight just spotlighted some new
    research showing how autism may have a relationship to bacteria in the
    gut, and the research following this lead. You won’t get that story from
    CTV or Global, til it shows up as a story from Reuters or AP or another
    foreign source. And the SUN News outfit are monkeys playing with their
    own feces.

    Criticize – yes. Destroy – no. What exactly DO you like about Canada?
    Right now, we’re becoming Nebraska, with better health care.

  • Gabby in QC

    Is there more evidence needed to prove that a threaded format, with an ever-smaller space for replies, is cumbersome & at times even useless? Just scroll down to see a discussion between DougM & Kenn2 disappear, ending up in a column of single letters!

    Stephen, when I first discovered your blog, sometime in 2005 (?), comments were listed chronologically and all anyone responding to a commenter had to do was cite the commenter’s name & time of comment. That format worked very well. I’m afraid the current one does not.

    Yeah, I know, everyone’s a critic …

  • Liz J

    Yeah, I find this to be a zany format and totally irksome to try to follow comments.

    When the bandwidth has gone to a thread of single letters it’s time to forget about those comments. Guess it’s one way of getting rid of trolls who keep on trying to get the last word though.

  • Liz J

    Yeah, I find this to be a zany format and totally irksome to try to follow comments.

    When the bandwidth has gone to a thread of single letters it’s time to forget about those comments. Guess it’s one way of getting rid of trolls who keep on trying to get the last word though.

  • Anonymous

    Oh, the hypocrisy….

    For the record, my ‘single-letter’ response to Doug shouldn’t have published, because I’d deliberately put a moderation f-bomb in it so it shouldn’t have appeared… but it did.

    There is a way for someone to easily read a comment that’s gone skinny… but since most don’t like my posts, I won’t waste your time with it.

  • Anonymous

    Oh, the hypocrisy….

    For the record, my ‘single-letter’ response to Doug shouldn’t have published, because I’d deliberately put a moderation f-bomb in it so it shouldn’t have appeared… but it did.

    There is a way for someone to easily read a comment that’s gone skinny… but since most don’t like my posts, I won’t waste your time with it.

  • Gabby in QC

    An addendum to the comment I left here a week ago about the controversy involving Irwin Cotler’s riding. Some of his constituents reportedly received calls from a firm called Campaign Research. During those calls, when asked why they were calling, the callers apparently suggested Mr. Cotler might be resigning. Mr. Cotler raised this as a point of privilege, saying that rumour impeded his work as an MP.

    In his ruling, the House Speaker termed that kind of tactic “reprehensible” — a word that Evan Solomon savoured so much that he repeated it during today’s Power & Politics at least 6 times. Having wagged their fingers and shown their stern disapproval of such “reprehensible” tactics, the “power panel” went on to discuss former PM Jean Chretien’s latest sortie, a fund-raising letter for the Liberal party. In it, Mr. Chretien once again raises the spectre of all the bogeymen against Stephen Harper: he’s going remove a woman’s right to choose, rescind gay marriage, and even reinstal capital punishment.

    During the “power panel” free-for-all, when the panelists drown out the sole conservative, Joan Crockatt quite rightly pointed out the double standard applied to the Liberals and the Conservatives. The rumours about Mr. Cotler? “reprehensible”. The rumours about PM Harper? Merely Chretien being Chretien.

    As I pointed out in my previous comment, I wish such tactics were not used. When the Conservative party uses such tactics, I cringe, because I think my party is lowering itself to the opposition’s level. But the sad reality is that rumours are often used to undermine the reputation of politicians, parties, and governments. Defence Minister Mackay was rumoured to be headed to a Bay St. law firm, Public Security Minister Toews was rumoured to be headed to a judgeship. Those rumours were aired by reputable journalists, citing anonymous sources. Neither Minister whined that he could not perform his work because of those rumours. Now Jean Chretien is once again reviving the “secret agenda” mantra — but that was excused as merely firing up the base by the other panelists.

    Joan Crockatt has it right: there is definitely a double standard at work, which is why I believe the Conservatives must always cling to the straight and narrow. To quote a favourite Chretien-ism: “When you throw mud, you lose ground.”

  • http://twitter.com/sailsmart sailsmart

    Who cares about that quibble when the real problem is what’s behind ridding us of the registry?  Which would mean easier access and normalization of a horridly toxic tool for crime and evil.  I also put out there that by allowing access to guns, open borders, we shall soon see higher crime rates in poorer areas of Toronto where gun crime is already endemic.  All the more reason for Harper’s jails, right?  So far two major crimes have been committed, resulting in death of young people.  Take the guns off the streets.  No one needs to be hunting as a sport.