The entire Canadian mindset is far too deferential to and dependent on power to be useful.
And that’s a great quality for a publicist, not a journalist.
If you have an army of people who are always telling you how wonderful things are and always trying to spin bad things to seem like they are good, you become a joke.
Journalism is about telling people what isn’t working. It is not to be a cheerleader or a hand-holder. It is not to appeal to authority. It is not about being everybody’s buddy.
That’s what the problem with communist “news”: it was always so positive. People saw their own problems, and then had a good laugh watching the news.
Journalism is about getting truth of reality. It is about giving facts and not just asking questions but questioning every assumption, and the timing of their release. It is about questioning authorities, not mindlessly relaying what they decree to the little people.
You have to make people feel uncomfortable. You have to pop balloons, rain on everyone’s parade, and otherwise be a spoiler. You are not there to be liked, or play your cards right so you get an invite to everyone’s birthday party.
It is the questioning of assumptions that Canadian media always had a hard time doing. Watching and reading the Canadian news was always a difficult exercise because no questions were ever answered and most stories come off as advertorials.
It is the reason there are so few laws and regulations that have any teeth: no one is actually held accountable.
Let take each of those random stories and see how useless they are:
- The Globe and Mail are fawning over someone who has a tiny show on CNN — they are not questioning what nonsense the speaker is spewing and that the facts, truth, and reality are not aligning with his hypothesis. They are merely relaying what he said as if that was truth — and there are way too many flaws with the hypothesis. It should have been an article exposing the weaknesses, not agreeing with them.
- The second article is a temper tantrum — blaming the government’s “indifference” for destroying journalism. Excuse me? Journalists were completely blameless in their own demise? They all have to be kept with a benefactor supporting their dysfunction? Journalists are supposed to keep government accountable, not expect them to issue their pay checks. If journalists were doing their jobs right, then they wouldn’t be in their current mess. Stop being a bunch of passive self-entitled boors and admit you are responsible for your collapse. The government owes journalism nothing, but reporters have been kissing up and giving the government such a free pass over the decades, that they somehow think they ought to be rewarded for their free publicist services. It is utterly disgusting and shameful.
- Here is an article about government welfaring of Toronto theatre and how the now disgraced Soulpepper is being under scrutiny after its been exposed as a workplace with sexual harassment problems…but the Star cannot help themselves but add in a separate section “And now the good news…“, that reads like a press release for the government. It cannot report on just the troubles in theatre, why it needs government funding at all, whether sexual harassment is a problem in other theatres, there has to be a sunny spin, as if it is writing for sheltered children with reality issues.
It is the compulsion to appeal to authority and not push to find truth that made the profession unreliable. It isn’t helpful. The press cheerfully crows about housing prices going up, up, up, without actually, say, getting a bunch of reporters going undercover to see what is happening.
The houses are often in very rough shape with structures collapsing and decades old. Many houses have multiple tenants, meaning people cannot actually afford it. The percentage of Ontarians with minimum wage jobs is staggering, and utility prices are prohibitive for many…
So why are obscene housing prices a reason to celebrate?
They should be questioned, investigated, and analyzed.
But journalists don’t question things, making their product useless.
The why and the how are the most important questions, and yet it’s always sunny spinning we get from the press.
People have budgets and they have to decide what to buy and what to pass — and when you have a useless product, people will take a pass.
And in this case, it’s journalism.