Friday, June 27, 2014
Stephen Harper and the Destruction of the CBC
Gawd. I can only imagine Stephen Harper's state of mind. I bet he's so alarmingly aroused that they've had to bring in Jason Kenney with a bucket of ice water to sponge him down.
Or have John Baird fan him furiously.
Because on Wednesday he gave the order to begin dismantling medicare. Yesterday he celebrated the triumph of hate over human rights.
And last night he got to dine on the remains of the CBC.
The CBC plans to cut up to 20 per cent of its staff by 2020, including a sharp reduction over the next year as it transitions to a leaner, mobile-first strategy aimed at keeping costs under control.
Which as you know he has been dreaming of doing from the moment he came to power...
And no doubt after the dinner was over, he gave the head waiter, CBC President Hubert Lacroix, a generous tip for services rendered.
The CBC’s enemies are not only circling their prey from the outside, including the Conservative government with its unrelenting budget cuts. Its enemies are also working from within. The CBC has a compliant board of directors overwhelmingly stacked with Conservative party donors and a president, also conservative, who appears ready to implement any budget cut in virtual silence.
Let us not be fooled. In the dead of night across this country, cut by cut, in small towns and large cities, in newsrooms and documentary edit suites, Canada’s public broadcaster is being destroyed.
For whether Lacroix sought the role or not, he has turned out to be Lord Harper's velvet gloved executioner.
For only an executioner could make eliminating the jobs of so many employees sound like a positive move...
And Lacroix seems to have forgotten two very important things:
One, the Con regime is not the CBC shareholder.
“Lacroix should resign. He is helping Stephen Harper drive CBC into the ground. Today he told CBC’s employees that the government is the shareholder. That’s false: all Canadian are shareholders,” said Friends spokesperson Ian Morrison.
He is helping Harper make the CBC smaller and weaker.
And two, the CBC is not a business, it's a service.
The CBC’s strategic plan to shift priorities from broadcast to digital services and outsource virtually all but news and current affairs programming is, on the whole, a sensible strategy – from a purely business perspective.
The thing is, however, that the public broadcaster is not a business in any conventional sense. It exists not to make money or to satisfy financial goals, but to fill a public need – one that is not being served by private media outlets. The CBC is a public good, like the school system, like medicare, like our universities and colleges, our public museums and galleries.
So while it's good to strengthen its internet presence, it makes no sense to reduce its TV presence. Not when more Canadians are watching TV, an average of 28 hours a week up from 23 hours in the last survey. And that number is sure to grow as the population ages.
And all Lacroix's five year plan would do is fragment its mandate.
Most people who study digital online media recognize that one of its impacts is to atomize audiences. Where traditional broadcasting creates a kind of congregation, a community of interest, the fragmented, specialized nature of Internet content tends to encourage individuals to focus on their own established interests. There is certainly a place for this, but it runs counter to the community-building remit of public broadcasting.
But then of course that exactly what Stephen Harper wants. For he hates anything Canadian that would bring us together, like the CBC, the Charter of Rights, and medicare.
He would rather unite us through the celebration of war.
On Harper TV, or his Palpatine Propaganda Channel...
While showing the CBC no mercy.
At Thursday’s town hall, Mr. Lacroix told dispirited employees that the corporation’s executives went to Shelley Glover, the Minister of Canadian Heritage, and asked for a line of credit and one-time money to help with severance costs, but were turned down.
Ms. Glover said in a statement that the CBC “is responsible for its own operations” and should adapt to the changing landscape “within its existing budget,” which includes a billion-dollar federal subsidy.
Even though public broadcasting in this country receives so much less support than it does in other countries.
At present, the CBC receives an annual parliamentary appropriation of about $1.34-billion. This puts Canada third from the bottom of the list of OECD nations’ support for their PSBs.
He would slash and burn and burn it beyond recognition...
And the good news?
This is still the best way to save the CBC and Canada.
“This is a plan to do less with less and Harper’s cuts are to blame. CBC is popular with Canadians who will remember the government’s record of hostility to CBC at election time,” said Morrison.
For we can use his treatment of the CBC, to help portray him as an enemy of OUR Canada.
A man who would seek to privatize medicare like the Republicans. A political pervert who would attack the Supreme Court like a depraved tea bagger. A stooge who would sell us out to foreign interests, and flood this country with foreign workers.
And when we put it all together, in the most vicious attack ads this country has ever seen, it will help to destroy him.
For he may have his vision of the CBC, but I have my vision of him and his filthy regime...
Yup. Now more than ever, stand up for our Canada.
Before he destroys everything good and decent about this country.
Show your support for the CBC and its brutalized employees.
And defeat that monstrous leader...
Please click here to recommend this post at Progressive Bloggers.