As a collective, carte blanche opinion-maker columnists and editorial writers will sooner scoff with a smug smirk at the notion that a publication’s true appreciation, or notable lack thereof, for its readers’ opinions (almost entirely via letters to the editor) on the worrisome state of the environment and especially the government allowing its gradual destruction—rather than its appreciation for naught but its readers’ subscriptions to its publication—is fairly accurately reflected by the quantity of page space, or (again) notable lack thereof, reserved for the said readers’ perspectives on all relevant, timely topics. Furthermore, news-media professionals don’t refer to themselves as “opinion makers” for nothing …
If 24 Hours—not to mention its overly-plentiful fellow birds-of-a-feather Quebecor-owned metro-daily publications out there—were to be refreshingly honest regarding their heavily lopsided reporting, they’d openly admit to essentially running press releases from corporate entities, as well as those from some other potent political interests, pretty much as they are received, with the rare exception in which equal-space opposition perspective may be offered. The metro-dailies need to acknowledge that they’ve created or are intentionally in the process of creating an alternate journalistic practice that does not reflect true democratic principles and ethics. Apparently what it essentially comes down to is: ‘manufactured majority-electorate consent’ for the ruling party and especially its head, in exchange for annual corporate welfare (subsidy) payment cheques, often enough in the billions, to the vast-majority-shareholder ownership of those said mainstream news-media—all happily signed by the said ruling party and/or its head, and all under the BS guise of creating a notable number of permanent fulltime livable-wage jobs in Canada, and all information deemed unfit to print (but of course that’s all just coincidental, yet very objective, decision-making by both sides of the interest spectrum, isn’t it). For example, the annual collection of hundreds of millions of taxpayers’ money by corporate-news-media-ownership giant Quebecor, which is Canada’s largest newspaper chain, placed it in a major conflict of interest, for it was and still is fully supporting via positive coverage—and, much more insidious, a great lack of critical print—the government and especially the prime ministers’ office (PMO); and while the latter are granting the corporate welfare cheques, it’s on behalf of all Canadians, including those who go to school and work undernourished. But most infuriating for so many people of like mind as me, those cheques are given with little or zero accountability as to how many, if any, part- or fulltime Canada-based jobs are actually created as a result of all that public dole …
To be clear, had not the news-media such significant influence over the electorate in democratic societies—with much consideration, of course, given to the actual degree of ‘democratic’ governance—I wouldn’t be nearly as concerned as I currently am. The fact is, the large majority of working people feel that they have not the requisite time to become sufficiently accurately informed about all that’s at stake with election outcomes; thus they (even if just briefly and subconsciously) allow their minds to become malleable enough to allow/trust the mainstream new-media to honestly, accurately inform them as to the best choice or, contrarily, the wrong choice—all of which may be done implicitly, if not outright insidiously.
In a nutshell, Harper and party—although to the best of their power-in-numbers parliamentary ability are stalling progressive motions on major social issues such as the right to die and safe-injection sites—have their collective back scratched with private-interest-news-media’s positive coverage and/or lack of negative coverage. The above, of course, fails to mention the usual widely-read weekend-edition official editorial endorsement supporting the lowest corporate income tax rate and most generous corporate welfare payments in the developed world—all of which much favours the news-media-chain majority shareholders. And so the wheel keeps turning very well-greased.
Frank Sterle Jr