Smoked Meat Mission Redux
I am going to keep this post brief, cause I'm off to Montreal today and I need to get ready to roll. Hopefully in the next few days I'll have some big news about this site for you based on my trip, but in the meantime, let's rant. The Star sinks to Citizen levels A few weeks ago I posted about the Ottawa Citizen returning to their Spin, Counterspin, Truth analysis pieces that featured prominently in their election coverage last fall. There's another one today, with Jack Aubry deconstrucitng the role of the NDP and Senate in keeping the minority government afloat. Sadly, the Toronto Star fell victim to the same trend, with The Spin, The Claim and The Verdict by Tonda MacCharles and Sean Gordon. Let me explain something here. This is the media's job. This shouldn't be a special feature. What the Citizen and Star are doing is essentially admitting that the bulk of their news coverage is spun. By providing context on one issue, they are underlining the lack of context that plagues the majority of their pages. The problem is that because of the pressure to get the scoop and be the first one on every story, mainstream dailies frequently publish stories with one source giving one side of a story. These stories are followed up the next day with the other side's response and eventually the reader gets lost in a sea of rhetoric. And papers are forced to invent Spin, Counterspin, Truth-style analysis. A better solution would be to deconstruct party talking points and provide context in every story. When did the idea of balanced reportage become a novelty? The Post shows its true colours I don't have time to go over all of these one-by-one, but the Post has some real gems in their comment sections today, including a Post reporter arguing that newspapers are still a legitimate medium despite plummeting circulation numbers (no self-interest there); a military historian arguing for new energy policies, not because our reliance on oil is killing the planet but because oil revenues are going to "the enemy" (undefined, of course) and countries that haven't had to work for their wealth and therefore don't respect democracy; and an editorial on how teens can't make decisions for themselves and it's good that the state is there to tell them how to behave (based on both the Florida teen's attempts to have an abortion and the Jehovah's Witness who doesn't want a blood transfusion). Phew, that's some good neo-con'ing.