We think bigger issue is a PM who will only take 4 questions after nearly a month of 0 questions.
I have to admit, Harper isn't bad in the rare interviews he's done, and he's pretty quick on his feet for the most part. These admissions make it all the more difficult to understand just why Harper seems so terribly afraid of the media and the notion of accountability. I note, Ignatieff is taking uncensored questions daily, and no blood has been shed, if anything it has helped his image.
It is a statement of fact, to say that Harper hasn't taken one unscripted question since he became Prime Minister. There have been online "town halls" and other propaganda events, but everything is screened, just like Harper's press conferences, where people are chosen. Today, another example of a controlling PMO, and a Prime Minister that really looks the paranoid COWARD. All this debate about the long form census, and Canadians STILL don't know what the leader of the country thinks, his rationale, his position articulated. What a complete joke.
Yesterday, Harper "allowed" the media into the Conservative caucus meeting. To say the speech was a thin farce is actually kind, the fact it got any coverage at all maybe more telling. Here's the rub- rather than lament the "bigger issue" of unaccountability, why not show a degree of fortitude and REFUSE to cover propaganda events. The scarcity of access to Harper has had a warped reaction, the media then falls over themselves for the slightest scrap. That speech yesterday deserved ZERO coverage, and journalists should have told the PMO, give us some meat or there is no obligation to cover. Where does it say the media MUST attend propaganda events and give it a voice? If people are really upset about only taking a few questions, travelling around the country and getting nothing but photo ops, why not REFUSE, thanks but no thanks.
In reviewing this week, it would seem the PMO got exactly what they wanted, and once again a certain manipulation has taken place. Journalists are obviously aware of the policy, but their voluntary COMPLIANCE belies any line in the sand or principled resistance. I agree with David, and I would recommend the next time the press gallery is summoned, they demand a more accountable exchange or they take a pass. Wouldn't that be an interesting development, and long overdue. Tired of the leash, stop wagging your tail :)