The Toronto Star had a meltdown, and their public editor was trying to spin this revelation very, very hard:
The notion that the office of the prime minister of Canada — or any other politician or public official — could simply “lineup all kinds of people to write op-eds” and expect them to be automatically published in newspapers like the Toronto Star, is both disturbing and laughable.
It cynically suggests that our journalism is a passive process of publishing to appease powerful special interests.
Because it is.
The Toronto Star used its own newspaper to lobby the government for money. That comes with strings attached. They knew the kind of slimeball the prime minister was — and all this time lavished praise on his majesty without ever telling readers who he really was. They hang around him, and they hear the rumblings in the belly of the beast. Why didn’t the Star let people know what pressure Wilson-Raybould was under beforehand? Why did it take the former justice minister to drop that bombshell now?
Because the Star was too busy navel-gazing and throwing diva fits instead of doing their jobs. They will only go after a politician if he isn’t kissing up to them. Telford wouldn’t have been so confident unless she had it in the bag. The entire scheme hinged on having a positive and sunny image so people didn’t know what was going on — and a government allowing a corrupt corporation to write the law and slip it in an omnibus bill qualifies.
But then comes this knee-slapper:
Journalistic standards demand that journalists weigh any information offered for publication in any section of the Star with a strong measure of skepticism, the imperative for verification of facts and consideration of the public interest.
With no empirical standards? Do not make me laugh, but this is the funniest part of this ass-covering piece of dreck:
On the opinion pages, the Star makes strong efforts to disclose any relevant information about its outside contributors to indicate to readers any special interests involved. All those who submit op-eds to the Star for publication consideration receive a detailed email that makes clear, “If you have an involvement in or connection with an issue that is not apparent from your credentials or the content of the article, you must disclose that to the Star.”
Did you tell people how you got a six figure contract with the feds? No? I rest my case.
The revelation probably went over more heads than not, but it is a serious question — and problem that needs to be exposed. Of course journalism here refuses to change — they figure kissing up to a corrupt regime ready to give out other people’s money will save them instead…