Friday, February 02, 2007

Myth Busting

People who work for the media like to think of themselves as hard-bitten cynics who "tell it like it is."

Yet, it seems to me much of the media is more into myth-making than in reporting cold hard facts.

Here are some of the more prominent media myths of late:

Myth 1. Liberal leader Stephane Dion is an ardent environmentalist.
Why is this so? Because Dion calls himself an environmentalist, because he named his dog Kyoto and because he sported green scarves at the Liberal leadership convention. That's enough to win over the media.

Myth 2. Climate Change is the Number One issue for Canadians
Yeah, I know the polls tell us Canadians care about the environment. But the "environment" can mean anything from having clean hiking trails to litter free beaches. And I'm sorry Canadians don't really think global warming should take priority over poor old grandma who has to wait eight months to get her hip replaced.

Myth 3. If your last name is Trudeau you are part of a natural ruling dynasty.
All the media fawning over Justin Trudeau is bad enough but putting that photo of Alexandre Trudeau's baby on the front page of the Globe and Mail, come on give me a break. What are we living in a monarchy?

Myth 4. Belinda Stronach has a legitimate shot at one day becoming Prime Minister
Here's what Belinda is: a spoiled rich kid with skads of money to hire the best spin doctors and publicists. Here's what she isn't: a serious political actor with any sense of vision or ideas.

Myth 5. The media is unbiased.
We all know the media tilts to the Left. But lately it seems to have become openly become the cheering section for the Dion Liberals. The Globe and Mail has especially evolved into a Liberal Party newsletter.

Mind you, reality has never been all that important in politics, but it would nice if once and awhile the media would look beyond the razzle, dazzle.

6 comments:

Miles Lunn said...

Here is my rebuttal

Myth #1 - Dion is a strong environmentalists, however he is also a realist too and will do what is realistically possible to improve the environment, but won't go the extreme of harming the economy as some fear.

Myth #2 - The Environment is the number one issue in terms of being ahead of all other issues although still less than half rate it as a number one issue. In addition the Conservatives lousy performance on the file is probably the main reason it ranks so high since people's priorities tend to be wherever the government is lacking in strength.

Myth #3 - For whatever reason many Canadians still love Trudeau even though many probably disagree with many of his policies. Since he pulled Canada to the left and many Canadians take pride in being more liberal compared to the US, it would only be natural they like him. His son Justin Trudeau is a complete flake, but is no different than America's love affair with the Kennedy family.

Myth #4 - Belinda Stronach could potentially become prime-minister some day. You don't need a strong vision to be PM, you just have to be less scary than your opponents and that means pretty much anyone running under the Liberal banner can win under normal conditions. If she stayed a Conservative, though you would probably right as Canadians are far more uncomfortable with the Conservatives than Liberals.

Mythg #5 - The Media is not left wing, but a mixture. The Toronto Star and CBC tilt to the left, while the Globe and Mail and CTV are pretty centrist considering they attack both parties equally and in the case of the Globe and Mail seem to always endorse the eventual winner. The National Post and Sun Media however have a right wing bias. The left wing bias argument is a folly used by the right to explain their lack of success in appealing to the public when in reality it is because their ideas don't reasonate with Canadians not because of the media. Interestingly enough the left claims the media has a right wing bias, which is also used to explain their failure at reasonating amongst the general public.

Gerry Nicholls said...

Here's my re-rebuttal:

Myth 1: You can't reduce emissions without harming the economy. Can't have it both ways. Mark Holland is already talking about gutting Alberta's energy sector.

Myth 2: No matter what the Tories do on the environment it won't be enough to satisfy the Left.

Myth 3. I agree.

Myth 4. Sorry Miles, I wouldn't trust Belinda to run a school council.

Myth . 5 I agree conservatives use media bias as an excuse for their poor communication skills, but come on even you must admit the G&M has become an extension of the Liberal Party's PR department.

Anonymous said...

Look no further as Miles offers proof of what Gerry suggests.

Here's my rebuttal to Liberal axis of excuses:

Myth 1 - Dion did nothing but sign his name to an accord he likely didn't even read. Naming a pet Kyoto isn't proof of anything. Perhaps Harper should buy his own pooch and call it "majority"?

Myth 2 - The environment appears to be no. one to the left-leaning media whiners and folks who have their sites set on becoming filthy rich if the citizens buy this crap.

Myth 3 - Only natural to like Trudeau? Take that out west and try to fly it Miles. The only true Trudeau succeed in moving a country to an passionate frenzy like a rock star. We've not seen that since. Not now, and like not ever from anyone, whether "son of" or not.

Myth 4 - "You don't need a strong vision to be PM". Exactly why Dion will NEVER be PM. "Anyone under the Liberal banner can win under normal conditions" - What are you smoking man? Do you mean "normal conditions" to be Liberals as Canada's natural governing party?
Belinda's proving to be a joke even among Liberals. Hey but she's your problem now Miles.

Myth 5 - "The media is not left wing" Hahahahahahahahahaha. I cancelled my subscription to the Globe last month. I have to agree with Gerry on this. It's become the head cheerleader for Dion and the Libranos.

You lost the election Miles, suck it up and get used to having a "do-er" rather than a "ditherer" or a "Dion" in power.

Miles Lunn said...

You can't reduce emissions without harming the economy. Can't have it both ways. Mark Holland is already talking about gutting Alberta's energy sector.

If done gradually enough, yes you can. Ever heard of switching to greener technologies such as driving hybrids. Or how about using public transit instead of driving to work. We cannot meet our Kyoto targets without harming the economy, but we can reduce GHGs without harming our economy. In addition Mark Holland did not call for shutting down the oil sands, he just said no further expansion without improving technologies which is actually something Peter Lougheed, Ed Stelmach, and Jim Dinning have all called for as well.

No matter what the Tories do on the environment it won't be enough to satisfy the Left.

That may be true, but they should at least be able to satisfy the centre and the centre-right who they haven't so far. They will never get the Left's votes, but they do need the centre-right to just form government and they need the centre if they wish to form a majority.

Sorry Miles, I wouldn't trust Belinda to run a school council.

You may not trust her, but 30% of Canadians would vote Liberal even if their leader was a monkey. Considering they only need another 5% to win a minority and another 10% to win a majority, it is conceivable she could become PM.

I agree conservatives use media bias as an excuse for their poor communication skills, but come on even you must admit the G&M has become an extension of the Liberal Party's PR department.

The Globe and Mail endorsed the Tories last election. In fact since 1984, they have endorsed the winning party in every election. If anything they seem to be the one closest to wherever the population is. Besides John Ibbitson has criticized the Liberals far more than the Tories and Jeffrey Simpson is equally harsh on both parties. He has slammed the Tories on the environment, but on issues such as supply management in agriculture, he calls for it to be dismantled, which no party is willing to do.

Dion did nothing but sign his name to an accord he likely didn't even read. Naming a pet Kyoto isn't proof of anything. Perhaps Harper should buy his own pooch and call it "majority

Dion only became environment minister in July 2004 so the effects of his policies are still be to be seen. But they did actually create a green plan, which was unable to be implemented since the government fell before then. If anything I would blame Jean Chretien for the failure on the environment more than Paul Martin.

The environment appears to be no. one to the left-leaning media whiners and folks who have their sites set on becoming filthy rich if the citizens buy this crap.

Corruption was number #2 a year ago after health care and in the early 90s national unity and the deficit were near the top but not anymore. As I said earlier, whatever area the current government is weakest in tends to be near the top of priorities no matter who is in power. And I don't buy this argument that you cannot be a right winger and an environmentalist. The British Conservatives under David Cameron are trying to out green the Labour Party and Arnold Schwartznegger who is a Republican is one of the greenest governors and even Preston Manning emphasized that the Tories need to focus more on the environment and include green tories in their coalition. You can use the market to help clean up the environment too.

Only natural to like Trudeau? Take that out west and try to fly it Miles. The only true Trudeau succeed in moving a country to an passionate frenzy like a rock star. We've not seen that since. Not now, and like not ever from anyone, whether "son of" or not.

In Ontario and Atlantic Canada, regrettably many people still like him. And not all of the West hates him. Alberta hates him, but British Columbia is more like Ontario politcally than Alberta.

You don't need a strong vision to be PM". Exactly why Dion will NEVER be PM. "Anyone under the Liberal banner can win under normal conditions" - What are you smoking man? Do you mean "normal conditions" to be Liberals as Canada's natural governing party?
Belinda's proving to be a joke even among Liberals. Hey but she's your problem now Miles.


For starters Dion has more of a vision than Harper and secondly almost every poll shows Dion either tied or ahead of Harper so you better believe he could become PM. I don't know where you live but in my former city of Vancouver and my current city of Toronto, people despise Harper and cannot wait to return the Liberals to office. They are the natural governing party since most Canadians are centrist or centre-left. Sorry to burst your bubble, but a minority of Canadians are right wingers and amongst those on the right, most are centre-right not far right. As long as no centrist alternative exists, the Liberals will win by default. Only when another centrist or centre-right alternative exists will the Liberals lose being the natural governing party. In fact Alberta is the only province where Harper is still well ahead. Even BC, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba show him in trouble.

The media is not left wing" Hahahahahahahahahaha. I cancelled my subscription to the Globe last month. I have to agree with Gerry on this. It's become the head

The Globe and Mail by Canadian standards is not left wing. Sure it is not as far right as Bush or Harper, but guess what the vast majority of Canadians aren't either. Funny how this works. When your views are so out of touch with mainstream values, what do you expect. Heck even in the United States which is the most conservative country in the democratic world, Bush's approval ratings are in the low 30s so even Americans outside the Deep South are finding him too right wing.

You lost the election Miles, suck it up and get used to having a "do-er" rather than a "ditherer" or a "Dion" in power.

Yes we lost the last election and yes we think we can win the next one. Beside Harper is good at retail politics. In fact far fewer bills have received royal assent under his rule than Martin. And quit blaming the opposition parties for holding them up. Canadians weren't comfortable giving Harper a majority so if he cannot compromise thats his problem. As I said earlier and will repeat again, Canada is not a right wing country and right wing ideas will not win you elections except when people get so tired of the Liberals they want to throw them in the penalty box. And your time in power will always be short unless you move to the centre.

Anonymous said...

"..30% of Canadians would vote Liberal if their leader was a monkey"

Please give us the source of this beauty miles?

Your rhetoric is very scary Miles.
I would worry greatly if Canada did actually have a government that fit your mold? Oh, wait...we DID have one. That party lost the last election and given how fast Dion's sinking the party, I'm betting the Liberals(monkeys or not) will not see a PM for a long while.

Keep producing those greenhouse gases Miles!

Miles Lunn said...

Anonymous - Since 1867, the Liberals have only once gotten less than 30% and that was when the Progressive Conservatives who were more centrist than the current Conservatives existed. Perhaps you live outside the GTA since I would say it is probably closer to 50% would vote Liberal even if the leader was a monkey in the GTA. And lets remember the GTA is 15% of Canada's population so you cannot win by writing is off. We have the power to block you party from forming government and won't hesistate to do so.

Dion is not falling in the polls, so believe what you want, but all signs suggest the opposite. It is not a guarantee he will win, but I think there is a better than even chance he will beat Harper in the next election.