Soft landings

Another change in BC Premier Christy Clark’s office, Andrew MacLeod, The Tyee, May 2, 2012

The Premier’s office is now Scott free, which conveniently fixes a CBC problem. They had refused to resolve the conflict issue after their own Ombudsman Kirk Lapointe sided with the online community and found that CBC’s provincial political reporter being married to a press secretary in the Premier’s office was problematic.

After my own complaints, I was told to expect the issue to be resolved shortly but not to expect any admission of error from the brass at the broadcaster. Now, Rebecca Scott is out of the Premier’s office and is just another member of the press gallery’s extended family, spouses and children, employed by government through political appointment. Gosh, maintaining a Liberal friendly media costs the public dearly.

That’s two demotions for the Scott-Smart family in recent days. Stephen Smart had been referred to as CBC’s Legislative Bureau Chief but the label has been discredited when applied to bureaus of one person. The Columbia Journalism Review had this to say recently,

“The use of the word bureau to describe a single correspondent… is meant to trick audiences into believing the news organization funds a sprawling newsroom in that location.”

I’m not surprised that rather few citizens defend CBC when they are targeted for budget cuts. The corporation has twisted the principles of journalism and public broadcasting so thoroughly that their main constituency of support is able to gather in a small Toronto restaurant.

Categories: CBC, Journalism

9 replies »

  1. ” maintaining a Liberal friendly media costs the public dearly.” You have to wonder how long the public will put up with this crap. Every change costs money and let's not forget when they leave or get booted ( Olson on your side & $67,000. ).
    I just can't understand why the public is not outraged at this egotistical woman who will spend like crazy just to keep herself in the big chair while children go hungry in this Province. It's sickening and unless the public gets together to say enough is enough… our tax dollars keep going down the drain.

    Guy in Victoria


  2. I suppose those of us who comment in forums like this are saying stop. It's the 30% of the citizenry that still tolerates Premier Photo-Op that needs to waken. Why are these people not paying attention?


  3. Why are they not paying attention? Perhaps because they get all their news from TV at 6 or 10 o'clock. Obviously television can't replace a good newspaper, and not can any of the major BC dailies. But the newspapers are still better than TV.

    Case in point..Jonathan Fowlie of the Sun quoted John Van Dongen's very astute question of Shirley Bond on his blog today..Essentially, regarding the forgiveness of the Basi-Virk 6 million, under what authority could DM level deciders make this decision. The Sun, we think is a very biased outlet. But good stuff filters through even there.

    Of course, Adrian Dix stating formally the NDP's opposition to the Enbridge pipeline yesterday was thought, quite oddly, less important to the MSM than Rob Niedermayers. Let's see..which carries more weight…that of a celebrity or a soon-to-be Premier? Tough one.

    Merv Adey


  4. “Why are these people not paying attention?”

    Selective focus, different priorities, too busy with life/work. Walking around with ear buds blaring.

    For those who never listen to radio and get their filtered info from newspapers or TV, they probably aren't aware that the Liberals are doing shady stuff and going down in flames. I'm sure that some don't even know that Christy is the premier… or that Victoria is the provincial capital (on Vancouver Island… not “Victoria Island”.)

    Some just don't have a clue! When I was door-knocking for the NDP in the Chwk-Hope byelection, one guy said, “I don't want the Liberals. They bought those subs from the Brits. I saw that on TV last night….”

    Christy's got enough trouble on her plate. She doesn't need the sub fiasco, LOL!


  5. You make a good point. Certainly The Sun presents worthwhile material and Fowlie is usually worth reading. But, on balance, the publication supports the interests of a small segment of our population and is destructive for the rest of us. Read Fazil Mihlar and his fake elite at Ian Reid's site. I second the accusation that The Sun acts often as propagandist for the 1%.



  6. Oops, I meant Scott Niedermayer, not Rob. Great respect to both of them, but my point stands re the media coverage of the NDP announcement.
    Merv Adey


  7. We are still waiting, for the most important change in “Christy's office…the premier herself! Great question from Dix, in the ledge though. Makes you wonder, at what level, the decisions are made, when “political expediency”,(read cover our collective butts,) is a definte necessity.

    I am quite sure that an order in council, can reverse this “payout” and inform card carrying members, of the BC Liberals, that they will be on the hook, for this return of taxpayer dollars, that was “obviously”, “hush money”. You do not pay off convicted felons, in this country or any other, unless you are truly a “third world” regime.

    I would hope that when the enquiries and trials, are underway that the “DM level deciders” get their opportunity to explain, the “decision process”. That will be quite entertaining.


  8. Norm, the question van Dongen asked in the Legislature yesterday is one I’ve been asking of the Auditor General and the Attorney General for well over a year, while copying most in the media, and bloggers like yourself. I specifically asked the Auditor General to look into it under section 13 of the Auditor General Act.

    The answer I received from the Attorney General was that the indemnification clauses imposing liability on Basi and Virk were removed BEFORE the findings of guilt in court. That meant that when they pled guilty there was no debt to be forgiven, so no authority was required.

    There are a hundred other questions about how that deal was cooked, and who had authority. I maintain that the deal Loukidelis and Whitmarsh made amounts to a $6 million contract to exchange the lawyers’ fees for the guilty pleas, and they certainly did not have authority for that. Also, the Crown attachment to the Basi real estate required Treasury Board approval in order to be forgiven according to the Financial Administration Act. They did not get that approval


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