Thursday, January 24, 2013

State Funded Propaganda?

Various arguments floating around SunTV and its attempt to secure mandatory carriage.   There is the obvious hypocrisy, given past statements about said mandatory carriage.  As well, there are philosophical arguments about corporate welfare, the need to move away from the traditional TV fee model, not reinforce it here.  What is mostly missing from the discussion is the single biggest issue to my mind, the fact SunTV is a "arm" of a political party, it is unabashed in its political leanings, which makes the idea of forcing its views on everyone completely offensive and patently obscene.

The Canadian right wing has adopted the American mantra of the "left wing media", like most buzzwords an imported affair, a simple copy and paste mentality.  SunTV is a response to this perception, its very zenith assumes we need a counter to the heavy bias currently present.  However, when one peruses the "targets", we find an entirely different presentation than SunTV, at every turn a sense of balance.  The hated CBC Newsworld loves their Tom Flanagan's. Kevin O'Leary's, their signature commentator Rex Murphy is anti-climate change, taken in totality you can credibly point to all sides given voice, on almost every issue.  As a matter of fact, both CBC and CTV bend over backwards to provide balance with their panels and commentary, to the point of passive media, a development not necessarily evolutionary if one subscribes to facts taking prominence over diplomatic nicety.  In other words, one can credibly counter the bias claims from the right wing, in reality these accusations don't equate to real world expressions, if taken in totality.

SunTV doesn't attempt to find balance, it is bold and unapologetic in its leanings.  This stance is fine, advocacy is acceptable and necessary.  However, when we move from expression of a political view to the idea that all taxpayers should support a particular bias, actually fund what amounts to propaganda, the CRTC has no choice but to reject such an affront.  The SunTV lineup is a nightly buffet of conservatism, there is no grey are, apart from token examples, the network is conservative and nobody disputes this fact.  If there is consensus on this point, then the idea of mandatory carriage is fundamentally ridiculous.   While there is a certain ambiguity about other news networks, SunTV is defined, it is a vehicle, its modus operandi is to promote the right wing ideals.  This assertion isn't made up or contrived, it is simply regurgitation of what original proponents argued to justify the network's presence, their own words betray the calculations and inherent bias.

As I write, right wingers are being urged to contact the CRTC and push for mandatory carriage for SunTV.  Should the CRTC actually grant SunTV this status, it would represent a complete bastardization of their mandate, it would equate to the lowest moment in its existence.  At the CORE, the CRTC would be validating the idea that the state sponsors narrow ideological expressions, it funds self interested propaganda.  SunTV isn't like the other news networks, to make the connection relies on a lazy superficiality under the "news" banner, any depth at all reveals an entirely different animal.  This "decision" by the CRTC should be an easy one, should it decide to force SunTV on all of us, it would lose any sense of neutrality and its credibility will be in question. 


Unknown said...

But what about Warren Kinsella? He's in a punk band! (I joke I joke).

Tof KW said...

Mr Kinsella is the token liberal at SunNews, employed there simply so Kory Teneycke can insist to the CRTC that his blight upon Canadian journalism is "balanced".

...but you already knew that, I'm sure.

Anonymous said...

I believe in free speech and would die to defend if need be. But in this case it’s not free speech it’s hate speech, it’s hurtful and it’s derogatory. Everyone should be allowed to say whatever they want in a free, open and democratic society. But if what you say causes hurt and harm it should be banned. You can’t yell “fire” in a crowed movie theatre cause it would cause panic and harm to someone. But Sun News is far beyond the elements of free speech. They commit liable, they are racists, they are blasphemies, they are biased and they are hurtful to visible minorities. They should be banned!

Jerry Prager said...

Sun media - and all right wing media - were on the verge of bankruptcy during the prorogue crisis of 2008-2009, until the PMO started pouring millions of dollars into their corporate coffers through the Action Plan Adscam, now they want more access to the trough.