Saturday, 29 August 2015

The Media is the Message

On the marathon road to October 19th, it seems that the important issues of the upcoming federal elections are not being discussed in depth. The public keeps being bombarded with reports of the Duffy trial. While it is important to know what really happened with the $90,000 from Nigel Wright, more importantly we should be looking at the real issues that matter to ordinary Canadians. I may sound as an apologist for the Conservatives, but we should look at electoral consequences.
First and foremost since the media likes to report on the presumed Duffy scandal, lets us put this in its proper context. The media ignores the fact that this saga stems from the fact that un-elected senators abused their powers and used taxpayers’ money as their own. Senators of all political stripes participated in this abuse. Duffy’s case is in the spotlight because the former PMO Chief used his own money to pay for Duffy’s transgressions. Ignored is that Duffy is charged with 31 counts of possible fraud. Should the public be concerned about what the Prime Minister knew or should have known? Of course they should. Did the PM handle the situation appropriately? Maybe not, however in my view the real problem lies with the behavior of Senators not the PM.
What we should be looking at are more important issues of security and the state of the economy. Some would argue that the Conservative under Harper have tried to control the security issue with more draconian and autocratic legislation. Critics are right to a certain point, especially where oversight of agencies is concerned. I for one believe that any activities of law enforcement agencies should be undertaken by civilians and not politicians. Remember that if we are not secured there will be no need for social safety nets because we may not be alive given the increasing terrorist threats.
As for the economy, the media has completely ignored how to report the recent global downturn in context to the Canadian economy. At first they reported a recession, which technically is not happening. If it did it would be a mild one. The real reasons for a downturn are the global collapse of oil prices, the real Chinese recession and the sluggish American economy. Do we report on the surplus? What is not being said is that Canadian manufacturing is improving partly because of a lower dollar.
However the media is not analyzing the other parties’ platforms. All their promises are based on additional spending. The NDP wants to have more post office union workers in an industry that is fast disappearing due to technology. He also proposes a child care policy similar to that of Quebec – a policy that is costing more than what was projected. While the Trudeau Liberals keep telling us that he wants to spend to make the middle class better, and will cut income-splitting, the media fails to say that the Canadian middle class has done better than the neighbors in the South. Trudeau now wants to mirror the failed policies of McGuinty’s Ontario which has led the province to have debt levels twice as large as California.
There is no doubt that Harper made some mistakes regarding the Senate scandal. I believe that he may have known of the $90,000 to Duffy, but how important is that to Canadians? What is the real issue is that Senators of all stripes have abused taxpayers’ money.. As the courts adjourn until November, Mr.  Harper should say:” Mea culpa, Mea maxima culpa, I made a mistake to believe Duffy, Brazeau and Wallin were conservatives. I should have known that there is no such thing but Liberals in the media. 

The mainstream media does not and will not support Harper ever. He does not fit into their Liberal mold. The media will portray all the negatives, which he may have a few, but rarely tell the story that Canada was better off under the Conservatives after the great recession, and we are still better off despite the assault on the Oil Sands led by the left in this country and around the world. Most leftist promises will have to be supported by revenues from commodities that they despise.
The latest message is that Mulcair is more conservative than we believe. In other words he is not a socialist and his policies are more   acceptable. This is how the media will shape the elections. As for the ‘control freak ‘moniker, do we want a leader who is not in control? Pierre Trudeau was a control freak but he was a Liberal therefore acceptable.
In a world of #uninformed, #vacuous and # entitled , with today’s technology the news, and surveys can be manipulated and pundits helped by the media will do it .Report the negatives and ignore the positives.
“ The medium is the message”, is no truer today that when McLuhan said it.