Friends caring for friends

Bill Good mounted a defence of Christy Clark today following release of David Basi’s accusations that Premier Christy Clark was very much involved in the corrupt sale of BC Rail and was leaking confidential information to fixers involved in the deal.

Good was joined by Keith Baldrey who wondered even “if it is a story.”

They argue that no smoking gun has emerged to prove the Liberal government guilty of corruption and they say that Basi cannot be trusted. They didn’t discuss who is preventing examination of the entire body of evidence or who negotiated and paid to end the court process that should have provided definitive answers.

Listeners should be asking if these media members are trustworthy.

Of course not. They’ve taken a side in British Columbia’s political wars. For example, the BC Chamber of Commerce is a highly partisan organization. Directors and their companies have donated about $1 million to BC Liberals and Chambers have received millions from taxpayers in return.

The BC Chamber calls itself “the most influential business association in BC – the provincial leader in public policy…” One of the ways it gains influence is through the relationships it fosters with members of the media.

Good and Baldrey, along with Vaughn Palmer, appeared May 25 at the Annual General Meeting of the BC Chamber of Commerce. This has been a regular gig for the trio and their Dull Edge from the Ledge. The cost of attending this year’s 2-hour bun toss at the Chamber’s AGM in Penticton was $60 a person. The Chamber has not been the only customer of the Good/Palmer/Baldrey roadshow during the past few years.

Is it a conflict of interest for media members to accept appearance fees from industries and partisan groups who have a direct interest in their reporting and commentary? Is it at least an apparent conflict?

CKNW and Corus Radio claim they observe codes of the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council. One of those codes says this:

Clause 6 – Full, Fair and Proper Presentation

It is recognized that the full, fair and proper presentation of news, opinion, comment and editorial is the prime and fundamental responsibility of each broadcaster. This principle shall apply to all radio and television programming, whether it relates to news, public affairs, magazine, talk, call-in, interview or other broadcasting formats in which news, opinion, comment or editorial may be expressed by broadcaster employees, their invited guests or callers.

Electronic journalists will govern themselves on and off the job in such a way as to avoid conflict of interest, real or apparent.

In media, standards of conduct and transparency are more boasted about than actually observed. Additionally, if one person is in conflict, there is a quiet expectation that colleagues will not report the conflict.

It’s an unprincipled situation that undermines credibility of the entire mainstream media.

19 replies »

  1. Two arguments could be advanced that Good, Baldrey, and Palmer are safely off the hook regarding Article Six. First, they’ve been surrendering any claim to journalism for some time now. Second, they are acting in complete concert with their interests by supporting those who support their friends in government; so there is no conflict.


  2. Good points Lew….I was going to add Article Six to my official complaint (already lodged with the CBSC and the CRTC) stating our BC radio and television stations need to be restricted from using the term “News” to describe the segments that come on every hour or so….but, as you explained… they do not qualify in the first place. These hourly segments are more aptly placed under the heading of entertainment…. or info-mercials for the Liberal party. Any media outlet that contributes funds to only one political party and not all parties equally should not be able to use the term “News”…..any person who is monetarily rewarded in any way by the people and industries they are “reporting” on cannot be allowed to use the term “journalist” in their job description…there needs to be another designation developed. Even that job description would require full disclosure of compensation received…. whether by way of cheque or investment opportunities.


  3. Dead Dog'98 cannot be regarded as a news radio station, rather it is the propaganda arm of the BC Liberal Party and the three amigos, who pretend to be journalists are nothing more than Goebbelesque propaganda artists, who repeat the lies of the party line so often that they appear to be true to all who listen.

    Dead Dog'98 is bereft of moral and ethical operation and a lack of unpartizan news and opinion has many previous listeners turn off the station or radio altogether resulting in a nose dive in ratings.

    Adiós Dead Dog, even the return of Rafe mair can't save you; Adiós the three amigos, Fox radio and Rush Limbaugh await your journalistic ethos.


  4. Thanks Norm another great post and on the money comments here as always.

    $60, only $60 dollars? I would happily pay 10 times as much (that would be $600 for those liberals too far budget challenged to figure out the math) to toss buns at “the Dean, the Don and the Foghorn”. Would I get a tax receipt? No matter.

    These three news “crumbs” (maybe once upon a time) good reputations are long lost and their current shame sadly and totally self inflicted. They will soon end their careers with the dishonour and bane of most BCers.

    More and more people are finally awakening to the the ongoing and absolute corruption of this government and their hand maidens.


  5. $60 to attend the BC Chamber AGM? It's gone down. Only a few years ago my Chamber paid nearly $200 for me to attend. Guess it's getting harder and harder to “suck in” those pesky Chamber members, eh? Gotta make it more appealing so they actually show up.


  6. Good, Palmer, Baldry, have become what nineteenth century novelist Ivan Turgenev called Fyodor Dostoyevsky one of his competitors;

    ” a pimple on the face of literature.”

    For the 3 amigos mentioned previously just pluralize one noun and change the other to journalism.


  7. I agree thoroughly with your last line, but am surprised by Turgenev's comment re:Dostoyevsky. I can only assume the heat of competition and the moment to be the explanation, because I consider both of them to be giants along with their third amigo Tolstoy.


  8. I remember reading about the journalist, I.F. Stone and his publication, “The I. F. Stone Weekly.” In the article about Mr. Stone, he stated that he never interviewed politicians because they always try to manipulate the truth to suit their purposes. Instead he wrote about them by examining what they said and what they did.
    Whenever I see a reporter saying he/she spoke to a politician, I always take it with a grain of salt. Baldrey (and other reporters called for a story) should realize that they are being used to spin a story. They are not necessarily getting the truth from the horse's mouth.
    Many news outlets would not publish I. F. Stone's work because they were connected to the politicians so he started his own publication, the “I F Stone Weekly.” It was fairly popular, highly respected and he was sort of a pre-internet blogger.
    Can you believe I learned about this in one of my grade 12 courses many years ago? His work was part of the course.


  9. Thanks Anonymous. Izzy Stone! We can only dream to see a tenth of his integrity represented by any of the slouches slithering around our “DAILY BUGLE”. What jurisdiction did you live in that allowed Stone to be taught? Next thing you're gonna tell us they referenced “Das Kapital” in economics12. Cheers.


  10. Agreed. Interesting to note that now, more than one hundred years after that crude dismissal, Dostoyevsky is the much more highly regarded and influential writer than Turgenev. Tolstoy slipped my mind; good one.

    For Baldry, Palmer, Good the word “projection” comes to mind in which people superimpose their fantasies and delusions on realities they don't or refuse to see clearly.


  11. I don't believe he is smart enough to think on his own. I see Baldry as more of a follower, a “go along” guy who would rather be included than lead.

    I see Palmer as having more of the leadership qualities we are looking for including the image as a former long ball hitter in journalism….but he put it on the shelf and no longer uses it.


  12. Going too fast these days; just came back to add that Good never really had any skills for this kind of job but has been hitching a ride on the coattails of his father’s name and image for his entire career. He used to cover for it very well but now doesn’t care much any longer….. He also appears to not like women too much as the way he treats them on his show is abominable at times.


  13. When I used to pick up the Sun (which was rarely) I always read Baldry first thing. Now I never read him as I never read the Sun! It and the Province were great papers years ago but now they are outhouse material!


  14. Of course its a “story”…the idiocy of these reporters trying to deny the major political story of the past decade, is pure partisan BC Liberal support on their part. What a complete and utter crock! Surley these people are not in the business of “reporting” the political news…maybe the Enquirer news, but not whats happening in the real world.


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