Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Media groans

Far be it from me to pick on the media. You know, being a member of the media and all. It's really so easy though, and there's a few examples today in my morning reading that were particularly annoying:

Take the editorial
(subscribers only) in today's Globe, my morning hard copy read of choice (I avoid the local Toronto papers, lest I be reminded of where I live). On a piece about Stephane Dion's dream team appointments yesterday, the editors criticize Dion for only including Central Canadians on his dream team, and just one woman, Martha-Hall Findlay, another Central Canadian (I think they mean Ontarioin…Ontarioite?).

A few things. First of all, while they mention Iggy, Rae, Gerard and Martha, they very conveniently forget to mention the guy co-writing the platform with Rae. Perhaps because it doesn't support their thesis. That would be Scott Brison. Last I checked he was from Nova Scotia.

Also, this is just the first round of announcements, and you'll notice it involved only candidates from the leadership race. That's the pool he was working from for this announcement, and it was a pool that included just one woman and a bunch of people from Ontario. Shadow cabinet should be announced in the New Year; that's when we should be scrutinizing the choices for balance along regional, gender and ethnic lines.

I will grant one point to the Globe's editors though. The fact the list of leadership candidates lacked such diversity is troubling, and signals there is work to be done. And I'm confident it will be.

Then there's Don
Martin's fawning column in today's National comPost. He owes me $3.50 for Rolaids. He concedes Harper is no Al Gore on the environment (no merde Don) but claims Harper has found religion on climate change (apparently since last week when he talked about "so-called global warming). Muldoon must have given him a really good scolding.

But, here' a particularly ridiculous passage from Martin:

First move, thaw relations with the frozen-out media in Ottawa.

Four unprecedented moves -- his first Ottawa news conference in half a year, an appearance at the press gallery kids' Christmas party, a series of year-end print interviews and a media bash at 24 Sussex -- suggest his permafrost heart for all things journalism is melting faster than the polar ice cap.

Unprecedented? You're kidding me, right Don? Holding a news conference is unprecedented? Stopping by a kids Christmas party is unprecedented? A media Christmas party is unprecedented? The PM giving year-end media interviews is unprecedented? You mean, it doesn't happen EVERY YEAR?

Let me put it slightly into context for you Don. While these things are standard practice for every other PM, they ARE unprecedented for Steve-o. Because it is him that is responsible for the temperature of his relationship with the media. It was his Mr. Freeze routine.

You want us to give him credit for not being as much of a jerk anymore, because now he's gearing up for an election and has to make nice? That's like calling someone a hero for calling the fire department when THEY started the fire in the first place.

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