Financial elites have waged a decades-long campaign of self-interest against Canadians. They won; we lost.
The most important front has been action to control mass media and reduce the influence of progressive voices heard by the general public.
Writing with Robert Hiltz, award-winning journalist Bruce Livesay labelled the country’s largest newspaper chain, a “propaganda outlet for conservative parties and right-wing ideologues.”
Postmedia is controlled by unidentified investors fronted by Canso Investment Counsel Ltd. and Chatham Asset Management, a New Jersey hedge fund that serves high net worth individuals.
These shadowy lenders charge interest at rates more than 2.5x bank prime rate. As as a result, with asset stripping complete, external subsidies are a necessity to maintain a company being abandoned by customers and advertisers.
Ottawa’s LibCons decided that government should rescue Postmedia with part of a media bailout scheme costing taxpayers $600 million in the first tranche.
Of course, it is not only Postmedia that will extract dollars from taxpayers’ pockets. So will owners of the Globe and Mail. The Woodbridge Company is a private holding of Canada’s wealthiest family, the Thomsons, net worth over $30 billion.
Prem Watsa, Torstar’s billionaire investor, will be made wealthier by taxpayer subsidies to Toronto Star, Black Press, StarMetro, Sing Tao and more than 100 community newspapers and online offerings.
Quebec’s billionaire Péladeau family, publishers of Le Journal de Montréal, will also welcome millions of taxpayer dollars to their empire. And, the billionaire Desmarais family will be pleased about public subsidies for Le Devoir and La Presse.
Uber-wealthy media owners in BC, like Glacier’s Sam Grippo and David Black and David Radler are not likely to turn down taxpayer contributions that will assist them in their real estate empires and other investments.
Media ownership was once a profitable venture on its own. Today, the main benefit is management of public dialogue and political actions that result in massive corporate welfare. This is achieved by appointing media managers who are loyal to investor’s purposes, not those of ordinary citizens.