POLITICS IN CANADA AND JOURNALISM
This edition is about the media and politics both supposedly serving Canada today. Each subject appears to be in a sad state of affairs. Federal and provincial politicians seek election trying to convince voters about being there for constituents where in reality they are all almost without exception in the House of Commons and the Legislature to represent the party and assure its political direction. When it comes to a choice on any subject the party dictates to members will always win. There are 303 federally elected members soon to expand in numbers, and it isn’t any stretch of the imagination to know the political party comes first in every instance. Power is essential. The only bright spot on the horizon is that there is little likelihood of any party winning another majority and thus passing legislation without proper discussion or debate. The practice of loading an omnibus bill with party wants to avoid having to sell the craftily included ideas to opposition party “elected” members should come to an end.
The media is a partner to the latest brand of political control of voters. In the past politicians as powerful as the President of the United States were challenged and virtually destroyed by the investigative prowess and media revelations. Today that brand of journalism is rare, even non-existent as it appears most journalists and political analysts have strong party affiliation with a dedication to the party of choice. Therefore an embedded journalist or media analyst with strong party affiliations does not tend to look for situations that benefit anyone but the party leaders and staff. In the new journalism situations that might not conform to ethical or even legal guidelines finds party hacks assigned to media coverage defending rather than debating or even discussing every situation? There are probably good reasons for the new criteria including the opportunity to receive an appointment to a high paying senate job or even political party director. Those kinds of changes to the world of investigative journalism remove a great deal of voter’s ability to judge the best representation at election time.
Today’s Canadian political leaders are completely dependent on non elected advisors with flawless party affiliation and loyalty to mould the direction of legislation. The current Canadian Prime Minister seems reluctant to speak directly to the people of Canada feeling more secure with communicating to the party faithful. There aren’t any media covered public meetings with the country’s provincial premiers or the few non-partisan journalists that still exist. Canadians discover more about the country’s political direction from news releases to foreign media than political activity covered by local pundits. The pendulum has swung as far towards government control as seems possible. Can it be long before that kind of journalism begins to right itself and the party power comes under media attack?