This topic is a real struggle for me. It’s basically about truth, lies, propaganda and the resulting confusion, mistrust and apathy that inevitably follows. But, at a different level it is also about function, energy allocation, focus and life. It’s personal! Put bluntly: it turns out we need truth to operate properly and lies makes us operate like idiots!
My examples below are not particularly good ones but they are recent, current, ongoing.
Let’s first look at how our media’s current dysfunction recently affected Trudeau and, ultimately, us. He was just given a good dressing down by some European parliament MPs who accused him of first being a China-lover, then a democracy hater and finally a bully because of his actions regarding the Freedom convoy that occupied Ottawa. I am, as you know, 100% displeased with Trudeau as a leader but everything they said about him was wrong. Totally fabricated. Two idiots in Europe have miscast Trudeau to the European Union. Two idiots have miscast Canada and the people in it.
How do we explain away two well-placed, educated, informed and elected MPs being so ignorant, so wrong and so misled?
Blame it on the media, I guess.
Now let’s look at Ukraine and Russia, for a second. I read, see, hear every day how valiantly the Ukrainian forces are defending their country and, frankly, I believe most of it. I hear of Russian soldiers deserting, surrendering, condemning their leaders. I kinda believe much of that, too. I see wrecked Russian tanks, fallen fighter jets and helicopters and even a good-sized ship or two that has been sunk. Ukraine is punching way above their weight. I am sure of that….. well, pretty sure…..
And yet…..Russia plods along. The heroic messages and stories do not quite jibe with the fall of Mariupol and the loss of the two eastern states. There has to be a lot more going on. But what is it? Most of the real story goes unreported, I think.
Blame that on the media, too, I guess.
And the media have been reporting the fall and destruction of Trump’s evil empire for a long time. For four years it was ‘wait ’til the next election and then he’s gonna get his.’ And then Biden won. And then the Attorneys General, the FBI, the special counsels and the media ramped it up. And yet, Manafort, Stone, Bannon and, most of all, Trump, family and friends still just carry on. Put another way, Capitol rioters who only violated the law of trespass and vandalism are already in jail and doing their time. Trump has been crooked since the day he was born. But he’s free. How is that possible? Is he going down? Or not?
Oh, hell, blame that on the media, too, I guess. To my mind, if Trump doesn’t suffer significantly, there is something significantly wrong in this world.
“Dave! What’s your point?”
The media can’t be trusted? The media do not do a good job? The media is just propaganda? Maybe the media cannot do a good job?
I really do not know the answer. I guess the media (whatever it REALLY is) has been that way for a long time and it is only the rapid inclusion and infusion of social media that has cast this different light on our primary information source. We were not confused when we had only one main media stream. Now we have many and the result is just confusion. Maybe we have been lied to or at least misled all of our lives?
Confusion? Mistrust? Apathy?
My Hong Kong friends constantly tell me a different story of Hong Kong than the one our media presents. They are happy. Western media says otherwise. My friends who go to Mexico every winter consistently tell me different stories about Mexico, too. I have friends in the Philippines, Germany, Britain and the United States. They all tell me different points of view from that which is reported.
Confusion? Mistrust? Apathy?
Bottom line: I have never read an accurate story about anything I was closely involved with either. Never. Not once. The reporter always got it wrong. That was usually quite alright for me because I was almost always the sympathetic subject (delinquents, Skid Row, refugees) and they told a story that made me look better than I was by a huge dollop of exaggeration. But they got it wrong. People reading it without the background were misled. Those reading it with the right perspective, were either lied to, misled or knew it was wrong but they were also okay with it (sympathy floats all boats in Skid Row).
Maybe the truth is too elusive and all we can hope for is to get close…….
“And sure enough, there it was,
not the sought-after needle, but,
to my agreeable astonishment,
the haystack in the field by the lane.”
― Robert Kroetsch,
PBS and Frontline are about the only News Media I watch with an open view.
CBC and Global “News” are so disgustedly biased I rarely watch either one any more.
Judging by their plummeting viewership ratings…. I’m not the only one that feels that way.
Thee sooner the Canadian taxpayer stops funding the CBC …the better.
Only the predominantly Quebecois employees will wail in anguish.
The Economist is pretty good.
The New York Times is a bit Left but they have good stories and reporters.
I agree with your list of reasonable outlets but I would add the Guardian because of my slightly more lefty tendencies. I also agree that the CBC needs either a major overhaul or complete elimination. The CBC is mind-numbing drivel save for a few shows (i.e. As It Happens). I have no problem with Francophones, gays, immigrants, the Indigenous or the ‘other’ minority sections of our diversified society but I get a bit tired of NOTHING BUT those issues. When I was younger, I worked a year at the CBC (I was 25 or something) and everyone I worked with was gay, Quebecois or a militant feminist). That seemed odd then. It seems odd now. A somewhat normal community dispersion pattern is what we libtards want. I don’t want every category statistically represented proportionally (affirmative action) because that suggests it was only skin colour that got ’em hired rather than competence at their job. Nor do I want an all-white, all-male work group for obvious reasons (air quality for one). I suppose I could handle an all-female group (all colours) but I would HAVE to be the boss. Aww, c’mon…I should be the boss somewhere and where better than with an all-female staff? I am sure Sal would allow it.
OK, it would be a short career.
The CBC’s shrill anti white , anti male, anti hetero schtick is wearing thin.
Time for a complete purging of the ranks and save the taxpayers 1.5 billion dollars a year for a channel no one is watching.
They can all go to the private sector and re-apply at Global.
Global tv has become an echo chamber for pro black, pro first nations, pro gay, pro female, …essentially anything that doesnt have the slightest hint of masculinity, Caucasian heritage, English as a first language, Christianity ( I am not religious just sick and tired of hearing about the poor , misunderstood Muslim suicide bombers) or colonialism.
Both channels are wallowing in self denial and self delusion if they think they can denigrate or ignore 40 – 50% of the population of Canada and make a profit..
And their dismal ratings prove I’m right.
Time for them to climb down off that politically correct high horse and just report….News.
Unbiased, untainted, objective…..news.
I dont care.
I ignore the shrill blame sessions that stand for the 6pm “news” and switch to Reuters or some other agency that still allows testicles in the reporting pool.
I do not like the CBC. But, on a scale, they are in the minus low teens and Trump and Putin are minus 100. Trudeau is in the negative 40’s range with consistent forays close to 60. Jason Kenney is stuck at -60 and manages to bump up against 65. And so it goes….my general and growing hatred of what we have become has scale, perspective, balance.
Now, to be fair, I live in paradise with an angel. I mean, I have it so good that EVERYTHING is lower on the scale. The Pope barely ranks on the positive scale if Sal and the pups are plus 100. I’ll give him a generous +5. Rock and Roll rank higher. Steak and chips ranks higher. Good scotch? Well, you get my point.
The Oscars are now being teased about being ‘old’ and out of fashion, out of the times, no longer hip. And newspapers are struggling to remain ‘au current’. Our institutions are just plain old and hoary. Time to let a few go. I’d start with the CBC and immediately add the Grey Cup. Then HUGE political reform! Then I’d do a total revamp of the Education system and the Health Care system. Ooohhhh…and they thought Putin was a megalomaniac!
Putin in the “past tense”?
Do you know something we don’t?
Nyet, comrade. No knowledge of anything. I swear on the grave you now have to dig!
But what is the alternative? Even Youtube, where everyone with a smartphone is a “reporter” is full of fake news and video’s. You would think that first hand information “on the ground” would be a reflection of truth! Just look at the headlines the reporters are inventing. Everything is allowed these days, as long as it draws the attention of the mass
Well, like I said, “Maybe the truth is too elusive and all we can hope for is to get close…….” Being properly, fully and honestly informed is probably impossible and getting close to the haystack is about as close to the needle of truth we will ever get. I found it truly amazing that some fact-checkers took news & You-Tube posts that were reportedly from boots-on-the-ground and found that some of it was faked!
As for your ranking vis a vis the pope? My readers get extra points every time they they show up. How could they NOT? People who come back and interact are very valuable in my life as an opinionated egoist. And the pope rarely calls or writes at all!.
And where are your devoted readers on this scale? I really do hope we are on the + side of your scale (below the scotch probably, but I do hope for a better ranking then the pope)