Memo to the National Post: #MeToo was a positive development in the workplace. But thinking there are instant solutions is childish.

There is a column in the Financial Post that walks lockstep with the Post’s narrative that #MeToo is a bad thing.

#MeToo opened up a crypt of horrors: it exposed that even female CEOs faced abuse from their male colleagues in the workplace.

It was a movement that is flawed, but long overdue.


Because women endured, and it didn’t make it go away. They broke glass ceilings, but it didn’t go away. They filed complaints with HR, it didn’t go away. They sued in court, it didn’t go away.

So, for the first time, women decided to air this problem and then they decided they, too just weren’t going to go away.

That is not a minor victory. That is a major key breakthrough victory of a major battle in the war against workplace terrorism.

But it wasn’t the end of the war, and the columnist — who is a workplace lawyer who is usually more sensible — treats the next battle as proof that #MeToo was a bad thing for the workplace.

No, women couldn’t get to this stage unless they won a key battle of exposing the serious problem out in public, the place where the workplace terrorists were revealed to be as such, and didn’t have lawyers who could make the problem go away or, have the boor in question pay anyone off.

Now, it is a new battle, which is part of that victory.

A war is fought in battles. You do not fight once, and then everything works out perfectly as everyone Learns A Valuable Lesson and stops being a predator.

So now there is a new battle, and this is one that women can win — and win far easier than the one before it.

First, it is illegal to discriminate against gender in the workplace — so if a corporation doesn’t mentor its female employees and doesn’t groom and promote them to be CEOs, there are resources to penalize their illegal and oppressive behavior. They cannot use fear as an excuse for withholding what an employee has earned.

We can expose these companies, and demand that they make public the percentage and proportion of women who get trained, groomed, and promoted — if it is anything less than 50%, we can take them to court, and as women are the driving force in the economy, they can boycott those businesses.

We can demand that women be trained and mentored effectively — so the excuse that men are too afraid is hogwash.

What you have is a passive aggressive retaliation tactic to prevent women from giving them what they have earned — with interest.

And unlike #MeToo, this battle is easier to win.

So if the executives and board of directors are too male and too white, I have recourse of not doing business with them — and making my reasons for my boycott public.

Women have and can buy stocks for the specific purpose of demanding that executive bonuses be directly tied in to the number of women (minorities, what have you) that are mentored and promoted.

So far from this being a bad thing, it is a great thing to happen to workforces. We can hold HR accountable for methods of dealing with workplace terrorism. We can strategically spend our money to favour those whose power structure reflects the real world.

You don’t retreat after you won a battle — you move forward ready to win the next one.

And if there is a setback, you regroup, learn from your mistakes, and fight again and again until you win.

You do not earn a major victory and then surrender to the forces you humbled. That is patently ridiculous, and there is no time for being afraid when there is a legitimate chance of turning bad workplaces into good ones that progress and thrive…

Dealing with reality, Part Two: Does gun control actually work? No. We ought to try our hand at violence control instead.

It is hard to believe than people under 30 use the Internet. I am pretty sure they hold fake god phones and stare at the screen looking at absolutely nothing at all.

You are going to have little Marches for Lies because if those kids actually were informed human beings, they wouldn’t be marching or asking for gun control.

They would be calling their representatives demanding violence control.

I am now sure that we have an illiterate generation.

You want gun control?

All right, riddle me this: France has very strict and complicated gun control laws, and this morning we have dead people there because a terrorist used a gun to take a life and take hostages.

France has serious problems with illegal guns. 

Your mental health records are checked…so people bypass that little inconvenience by getting illegal ones.

CNN has a deceptive article stating how gun ownership has been halved in France, but that’s only the legal ones.

Not the illegal ones.

And when you have a terrorist attack over there, killers use other things to mow down people.

No violence control, no solution to homicide.

Canada also has strict gun control laws, and they are getting stricter as we speak…

And yet shootings in this country are very common here.

And it has been violent here for a very long time.

When I was in j-school, I decided for one of my assignments, I would do a piece on gun control because there was heavy lobbying at the time for it.

So I did my research, and had many police officers tell me this wasn’t going to do a thing because the weapons used for killing were mostly illegal ones smuggled in from China — another country that has very strict gun control laws, but is also the world’s leading supplier of illegal firearms.

So the only thing that was going to happen was law-abiding citizens were going to have to pay money and go through more hurdles, while the criminal element were facing no changes to their routine.

And this was over twenty years ago.

Nothing has changed, and yet you have people squawking the same knee-jerk reactions as their parents did at the same age.

No change.

Once upon a time, you could forgive people for making the same mistakes as their ancestors because you didn’t have access to data.

Now it is a different story.

The Internet took away every one of those excuses of not knowing things from different times — or different places.

You have a generation who are incapable of learning from the past, discovering new facts to solve problems, and creating innovative new ways to progressing.

If you truly want change, you must do and think differently.

And marching to the same old tune is not going to prevent the violent from preying on you.

You have a culture of violence. The songs you dance to are violent. The movies you watch are violent. The games and sports you play are violent.

Only when a society decides to tackle the violence problem, will anything begin to truly change.

And there will be more violence because you have too many violent people that are not even deterred by the thought of a life sentence or death in order to take down as many people as they can, all while the sheep are marching because confronting the true problem is too hard and scary to ponder…

Dealing with reality: Your narratives, sophistry, and sanctioned insanity are your games. And no one is obliged to play them.

There is no such thing as “sacred space” or “safe space.” That is not just a hypothetical construct, or even fantasy based in a patriarchal structure, but it is a xenophobic lie that propagandists love to invoke to create an Us versus Them dynamic.

It is also more than drawing a line in the sand and building a wall around a group. The Left may make fun of Donald Trump, for wanting to build a wall, but theirs is an intangible one.

So when I hear a group get upset that someone violated a “safe space” or “sacred space” by reporting on what the group has whispered among themselves, I merely shake my head, wondering if that same group realize what danger they place themselves with that sort of thinking.

Safe space or sacred space is basically prey advertising to predators where the chicken coop is, and it makes the predator’s job easy.

When I was attending j-school, there was a problem with the behaviour of some of male classmates, and one of the female students decided to hold a meeting at her place with the other young women. I declined going. I knew what was going to happen: someone was going to designate herself a spy for the guys, and report back everything, violating the “safe space.” I had nothing to add because if I did, I would report it to who was in charge (which I did, but nothing was done about it), and tell it to the face of the person who was hassling me (which I did as well).

The meeting was just expressing the obvious to the wrong people, and would accomplish nothing, except shatter trust and give an advantage to the group who was being abusive.

And that is precisely what happened. Someone tattled, and nothing came out of it except a lot of hurt feelings.

It is the reason why #MeToo, despite its flaw, has the right idea of making the problems public. You are out in the open, not holed up in a cage, and when you have a “safe” or “sacred” space, that is precisely what you are doing — creating a cage to house the designated prey.

When you are out in the open, you learn to stand up for yourself and be honest. You learn to hone your strength and instincts. You depend on no one but yourself.

When you isolate yourself, you become passive. You do not learn to assess people, but make an unwarranted assumption that people allowed into the Prey Club have your back, and that’s rubbish. You are close enough to have that knife stuck in your back. You never learn how to navigate out in the open where there are far more opportunities than in that artificial and restrictive cage.

Grouping based on victimhood is akin to a chicken coop — everyone gets focussed on being prey, and not learning to spot danger. You are vulnerable to the foxes and weasels, and when you get targeted, you have no way of pushing back — you do not know how to deal with different people, or even getting to see the variation of thoughts, beliefs, and strategies.

The Left are doing what the Right has been doing with Fox News — it designates a group as “victims”, herds them into a cage, and then repeatedly tells them how to be paranoid, afraid, and self-pitying. That cannot solve a single problem.

And it doesn’t.

Because in order to create that misnamed “safe space”, you have to build invisible walls that are not aligned with truth or reality. You have to use false narratives to lure people in — a sink or swim fallacy that if you don’t band together, you all are going to be devoured.

Then you have to shut down dissent or debate inside this enclave by using sophistry — twisting arguments to justify cowering in a cage, rather than go out in the open, and be honest and truthful. I am a human being. I do not want to be confined or constricted. These rigs are destructive, and I am not going to tolerate them.

That shows strength, not weakness, but the Chicken Coop will tell you otherwise.

And when we have that coop, we have to justify an unnatural action: sticking together on some contrived pretence; so to enforce the bond, you bring in sanctioned insanity as you punish anyone who wants to be free out in the open, and sees no reason to be cooped up.

It serves another purpose: to keep the designated prey away from the labelled predators so it becomes easier to build them up as monsters.

When you are out in the open, you personalize yourself to others — and you learn to stand up to bullies, who cannot go running into their own rabbit holes: they have to deal with you.

They have to get to know you just as you have to get to know them.

You air your grievances, negotiate, and come up with a solution that benefits you both without trampling over the other.

That is how progress is made. Not running away, but running toward.

Fox News created the coop for people on the Right who didn’t reach their dreams or goals. Other news channels saw their success, and then used the same partisan formula to try to herd people on the Left who also didn’t reach monster success.

Neither side can possibly win because you have two groups who see themselves as victims, citing the cage as proof of it.

No, you ran into that cage for shelter and protection without asking if the price was worth it.

It wasn’t.

What you have are two groups following the same made-up rules, and then having breakdowns that not everyone is gullible enough to follow those rules.

You cannot stick the whole world in a cage. The people on the outside are far stronger and capable because they got feedback from their defeats and rewards for the persistence. They didn’t give up, and their worlds expanded.

Safe space is not a place — it is a state of mind, and when your state of mind is that the world is a playground and not a battlefield, you don’t need cover to progress and grow…


The Anti-Facebook propaganda campaign keeps on going: Self-interest is not news, Globe and Mail kiddies.

Serial plagiarist Margaret Went is walking lockstep with the anti-Facebook diatribes.

Dou Saunders is marching to the same tune, too.

For all those people whose privacy was invaded by the press, and those invaded by the government, these cases do not count.

Edward Snowdon’s warnings about government meddling have been for nothing. Nothing has changed, but the government is not the news media’s competition. Facebook is.

Should anyone delete their Facebook account? Are you taking quizzes, and revealing your innermost thoughts?

Or are you taking pictures of your restaurant meals so that your siblings can be jealous of you?

Propaganda brings both fear and paranoia, creating helpless and outraged victims.

And there is no reason for that fear. Why would anyone delete Facebook when you can make demands of the company instead?

The problem is people always expect They to fix things and clean up messes, and there is no such group. People are disconnected, and then others take advantage. You have a powerful tool — you do not give it up because you didn’t make demands — you can have conditions and then you have a product that suits your needs more.

Journalists would love nothing more than people to relinquish their power and their freedoms and come crawling back to them. Their sins are far worse than Facebook’s, and they have a vested interest in misrepresenting the reality of the situation.

I am not buying the snake oil they are selling — I use Facebook just like any other tool — a saw can be handy, but you don’t misuse it to trim your nails.

Besides, your personal information is not all that valuable — so don’t get worked up over nothing, especially if you don’t get engaged in your world…

Memo to Raymonde Saint-Germain: Of course a Canadian Senator wants the government’s hands in journalism: You can’t move a puppet your way without the strings attached. Dealing with vested political interests in the Age of Propaganda.

Senator Raymonde Saint-Germain’s brazen lobbying in Huffington Post Canada is one for the books. She is a government official, but never elected to this position. Not even a fraction of the people decided she was competent for the job. She has absolutely zero qualifications in regards to be being an editor, publisher, journalist, or media owner.


And yet she sashays right into a media outlet (more than one, making this a lobbying effort) to get the government’s strings attached to a source of information.

That is a bad thing. No democratic and civilized nation would allow such a gross conflict of interest. Governments must be watched over, not be the ones who use taxpayer money to build a pipeline into a vehicle that can expose their mistakes, lapses, conflicts, and sins.

Senators have no business in the business of journalism.

Senators are not qualified to do so. We saw what happened when senators from the realm of journalism were put in power.

Mike Duffy and Pamela Wallin did a very bad job of things.

The two realms do not mix for a reason.

But Canadian governments live to meddle and make decrees, even when everything is falling apart thanks to that self-serving meddling.

Journalism broke because it is too dysfunctional. It had no discipline. It had no humility. It had no empiricism. It had nothing that would propel it to evolve and progress.

And now the federal government should take advantage by enabling the very things that destroyed journalism, and replace it with what?

What the government decides is right?

Journalists should be the ones who strike fear in politicians, not come running like trained lapdogs looking for a handout.

Once that line is crossed, then we do not have journalism, but propaganda.

And we don’t have journalism any more, but propaganda.

Because it is an Age of Propaganda.

We need facts in order to make demands and challenge governments, not nod like dummies thinking we’re lucky that we’re being exploited and bossed around with the money we worked hard to earn.

I would rather be making enough money to pay for things myself, and not rely on someone else to take a fraction of my earnings to dole it out as they tell me what to do and threaten my well-being if I object.

And that those in the media industry are begging for enslavement shows how far away from truth and reality they have come.

Shame on you, Senator for taking advantage of a void so horrifically and arrogantly.

We need alternatives to journalism, not a regime-sponsored unreasonable facsimile of an extinct profession.

I would rather use my money to create that alternative, and not have the government snatch that money away from me to fund incompetent blowhards who will use it to promote the agenda of their sugar daddy as they lie to me how much more helpful they are to me than what I can be to myself…

When the gullible enter the dead profession: J-school students will amass student debt, graduate unemployed and unemployable.

Journalism required critical thinkers and innovators.

Instead, it got rote narcissists with a bad case of hubris.

The tradition continues. I have chronicled the works of j-school students here, showing their numbness to reality and truth.

I went to j-school. I graduated with owing a penny. I got myself jobs in the profession, but as I have mentioned before, I was not in love with the profession at the time. Journalism was going to be what I studied by working as a journalist.

But I remember worrying at the time about my job prospects when I was in j-school, even though at the time I had a newspaper column at a big city daily, because even then, there were big job losses going on in Canadian journalism back in 1995-6.

Some of my classmates said that was nothing to worry about because that meant those outlets would merely hire our generation to fill those holes because we’d be cheaper.

It didn’t exactly work out that way, however. There was no turn around.

Journalists are still hoping, and find comfort that there are people applying to j-school (read: partisan stenographers) now because of the fabled “Trump Bump” and brouhaha over “fake news.”

I have met many j-school grads over the years — most who never got a job in the profession. The ones who did had to leave because they either lost their job, or were fired because the company couldn’t afford to keep even the cheap labour.

J-schools have made no core change to rejuvenate the profession at all. Journalism became outright propaganda waging war on people and groups they do not like.

That is not journalism. You have people who are meddlers telling other people they are thinking wrong.

People now have social media, and despite the campaign to weaken it, the current scandal is being overblown.As I have said before, people mostly use social media as a form of amateur public relations, and a lot of assumptions about people are unwarranted. More women voted for Trump than Clinton in the last election. A lot of people who are the most strident online often do the very opposite of what they pretend to believe. People with an image of happiness take their own lives, people who cheat on their spouses talk glowingly about their marriage, and people who break the law go an attack others so people wouldn’t suspect them.

But you don’t need journalism anymore. You need to get rid of all of the rot from the ground up, and start fresh without the baggage and the confines.

It is no hope that you still have the oblivious and the gullible going into the profession, but as the University of Wisconsin’s recent move hints, humanities and social sciences are not delivering, and administration is not going to revamp these programs, but shut them down.

Oxford University is no longer accepting candidates for a Doctor of Letters in the English department, either. Communications education — fiction or nonfiction — is in a freewill, and we are not seeing the kinds of innovative minds coming in to change anything. They are following the same structural scripts. They are already making the same logical mistakes that sunk the ship they wish to sail in.

This isn’t going to save journalism.

We need something else that reflects the world we live in right now — not the one that never existed fifty years ago.

Once upon a time, universities were the innovators who created new professions in those Ivory Towers. Now, they play it safe, following trends and not creating them.

I know because I have been knocking on doors trying to do something about it.

Those going willingly into a dead profession have misperceptions of reality — because if they truly wanted to combat “fake news” — they would first see all the fake news that profession was responsible for spreading. They would bypass j-schools and go into disciplines that would give them the necessary tools to combat it.

They won’t be helpful because it is the same kind of people who went into the profession before — to tell the world what to think instead of giving the world the facts they need to form their own plans that are tailer-made for their own life requirements.

What you have is a group of young minds who bought a narrative — there is no sense of realism, critical thinking, vigilance, or skepticism, and that helps no one in the short term or long term.

And that is a very troubling sign for the times…

Social Media hate continues: Sexism in the news, good, but bad on Twitter.

Twitter may have been the place where #MeToo gained traction, and journalism was the place where many workplace terrorists abused women, but Amnesty International has decreed that Twitter is bad for women.

Where was Amnesty when women were abused in newsrooms, denied promotions or serious beats? Where were they when they were portrayed as brainless and helpless vixens who were dishonest or just plain crazy?

Nowhere to be found, naturally.

Women around the world have been abused and ignored by the press. Amnesty was no help.

But unlike traditional media outlets, Twitter is not a one-way form of it: it is two-way, and it gives women the power to fight back, organize, and circumvent abuse, which is far more than what women before social media ever had.

This report re-victimizes women, and slants a narrative to make it sound as if women cannot turn the tables (they did with #MeToo), and fight fire with any element they chose. Life is not going to be easy, and you will always have boors, but let’s not gloss over the advantages of social media.

It requires work, as does everything else. This is the one case where Amnesty would have been far better off to show how women can overcome the obstacles to break barriers with a very powerful tool, instead of relying on a rote patriarchal narrative.

I am not one of those people who cares for Twitter (it takes work and focus, and I prefer to invest both in this element rather than the tweet), I see that people such as Rose McGowan did just fine by it; so it is possible.

It is a wasted resource on many levels, and very few people can make it work — one even used it to become president of a country — but discouraging women from participating and sticking it out when the going gets tough isn’t helpful. Strategy would help.

I said this was the year where social media was going to get pummelled — and I was right…