Is Canadian media a sugarbaby? You betcha. This time, it's Postmedia.

Postmedia got five and a half million dollars from the federal Canadian regime a few months before an election.

Canada is a corrupt banana republic where anything goes, including having a sugarbaby media. Torstar did something very similiar a few months back. Postmedia is the only other game in town (aside from the Globe and Mail) and both quietly get big pay checks from the federal government.

This country could not survive if some level of government didn’t foot the bill. That creates more than just dependency — but incompetence. No wonder the press hates Doug Ford — he ain’t giving the sugarbabies any dough, and they are throwing temper tantrums.

Ontario is out of control with their dependence on the government to keep the people going. This makes us very vulnerable to any outside force deciding on a little economic terrorism: stop trade, wreck the credit rating, and then call in the debts. What we have are people who overestimate their own cunning, intelligence, abilities, and mastery because we have poor people think they are middle class, middle class people thinking they are wealthy, and a disturbing percentage of top 1% earners who would be out of a job if they lost their superfluous public sector position.

No wonder the press marches lockstep with the federal regime…

We don't need politics. We need empathy, respect, and compassion. You know, the things that count.

I

His ignorance was as remarkable as his knowledge. Of contemporary literature, philosophy and politics he appeared to know next to nothing. Upon my quoting Thomas Carlyle, he inquired in the naïvest way who he might be and what he had done. My surprise reached a climax, however, when I found incidentally that he was ignorant of the Copernican Theory and of the composition of the Solar System. That any civilized human being in this nineteenth century should not be aware that the earth travelled round the sun appeared to me to be such an extraordinary fact that I could hardly realize it.

“You appear to be astonished,” he said, smiling at my expression of surprise. “Now that I do know it I shall do my best to forget it.”

“To forget it!”

“You see,” he explained, “I consider that a man’s brain originally is like a little empty attic, and you have to stock it with such furniture as you choose. A fool takes in all the lumber of every sort that he comes across, so that the knowledge which might be useful to him gets crowded out, or at best is jumbled up with a lot of other things, so that he has a difficulty in laying his hands upon it. Now the skilful workman is very careful indeed as to what he takes into his brain-attic. He will have nothing but the tools which may help him in doing his work, but of these he has a large assortment, and all in the most perfect order. It is a mistake to think that that little room has elastic walls and can distend to any extent. Depend upon it there comes a time when for every addition of knowledge you forget something that you knew before. It is of the highest importance, therefore, not to have useless facts elbowing out the useful ones.”

“But the Solar System!” I protested.

“What the deuce is it to me?” he interrupted impatiently: “you say that we go round the sun. If we went round the moon it would not make a pennyworth of difference to me or to my work.”

—Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson in A Study in Scarlet.

II

I am not pretentious, but I am not stupid. I know details, and get nuances and catch on to Shibboleths. I don’t shop in Manhattan, but Secaucus, New Jersey where there are those fabulous outlet malls, for instance. I have ever since I was a teenager. I prefer the complexities of Bénédictine over most other liqueurs. Armani for the wife, Versace for the mistress, but Moschino for Alexandra.

I am not some yokel. If I don’t know something, don’t assume I wanted to know it. I heard it, determined it to not be all that, and promptly forgot it.

Such as whatever script someone spews at me. Brag all you want. In one ear, out the other.

What interests me is human motivation and strategies. Who are you as a person matters, not some bullshit story you are telling me to impress me or make me jealous.

Because I am not obsessed with keeping up with the Joneses, people think that I am going to be impressed and feel inadequate. Don’t be silly. What Alexandra wants, she gets, one way or another.

And Alexandra gets what she wants and needs all by herself.

I am choosy and I am fussy.

I love to learn. I just signed up for this Oxford short course. I love to write books, and that’s what I am doing.

I don’t have to take the course, but I like to expand certain areas of my mind, and bring them up to code.

I have three more pieces of unfinished business. Right before January, it was a dozen. None were minor.

After those are taken care of, it is the next level upwards and forwards.

But I never forget my roots.

I don’t look down on people who didn’t have the same opportunities. I respect and admire them greatly, and not in some precious, condescending way. People survived wars, slavery, incest, abuse, terrorism, illness, poverty, and victimization. They didn’t “bring it on” themselves. I am genuinely outraged that my country treats First Nations people like they were disposable, for instance, while we have grifters who live it up on the taxpayer dime.

The US Democrats act like the Catholic church — they talk a good talk about liberties, preach to tell you that you are inferior and need them to guide you, use Doomsday scenarios with their environmental policy, and yet keep begging for donations as they ride around in limos.

And like the church they emulate, they are the ones who get caught doing really infuriating things that prove they are hypocrites, making the New York Post very giddy.

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What is with this whole blackface thing, anyway? I mean, it happened in my junior high during class, and even then as a tween in the 1980s, I thought it was downright racist.

I can believe in forgiveness as a general concept, but it isn’t my place to forgive. I’m a white Canadian. I take my cue from the people who were wronged.

I remember The New York Times having this priggish Op-Ed piece when Megyn Kelly said kids did it in her time, and the opinionist got all snooty, claiming it wasn’t happening in his time and he was a couple of years older than Kelly.

Bullshit.

It happens now, but as we know, it happened then, too. I smell pants roasting.

So here is one group of people who branded themselves as a morally superior party having a cemetery of skeletons jumping out of their closets proving that it really doesn’t matter who you vote for — they aren’t authentic. The labels of these political sects is just a front for conniver who wants to wear a paper crown and will tell you whatever you want to hear.

III

Canada has the same problem right now. The federal Liberals are equally troublesome. While Postmedia owns both the Toronto Sun and the National Post, getting to play both sides of things, I found this National Post column interesting:

The other jab in this combination of punches is their regular mentions of Justin Trudeau’s “family fortune” — a phrase the prime minister himself used inadvisedly in a press conference.

“That amount ($5,000) is peanuts for a prime minister who inherited a great family fortune,” said Conservative Rosemarie Falk, by way of example.

…But there is good reason why the Conservatives are adopting such deceptive tactics: they are working.

What deception? That the Prime Minister has no empathy or ability to adjust his perspective? His policies are not for the poor. They aren’t good for the Middle Class. They cater exclusively to limousine liberals: people with money who do not want to be inconvenienced economically nor personally.

And then Trudeau opens his mouth and proves it, as the Toronto Sun gleefully pointed out:

“We see proof that the conservatives simply don’t understand that low income families don’t benefit from tax breaks because they don’t pay taxes,” said Justin Trudeau.

It is Trudeau who doesn’t even know the basic reality of his own poor. Poor people do have to pay income tax even if they make less than $12,000 a year.

They also pay HST on goods and services. There is no tax exemption when you buy basics.

The left-leaning press kept their mouths shut on this one, as usual, hoping not to draw attention and censoring unflattering nincompoopity from the Jive Turkey because they know if the Tories win, there is no goodie fund for them.

What you have is a prime minister completely incapable of genuine compassion and empathy:

“While we continue to stay focused on Canadians, Conservatives continue to stay focused on how I grew up,” Trudeau shot back.

Yes, because you never grew up. The Grits focus on themselves, no one else. When you keep the poorest at arm’s length, you have no idea who they are, what they need, or how they came to be poor.

Method Research would go a long way to understanding what needs to be done.

For one, I would force any candidate running for prime minister to be forced to live for two years among the poorest of his or her nation with no help. All funds would be cut off, and they would be monitored.

You are going to live in a shitty little shack. You are going to have to get a joe job. You are going to have to pay the bills with whatever you earn.

Two years.

No limos. No colorful culturally-appropriate costumes. No designer clothing or children’s socks.

And, for giggles, you’d be sent up to the remote location where everything is more expensive.

Then you would be grow up, put on your big boy pants, and have a fresh perspective.

It would be good if everyone was healthy, happy, and prosperous.

This isn’t reality.

And ignoring it isn’t actually working for the Left. People aren’t blind or numb to their own whispering problems.

With Trudeau, it is shallow gestures and empathy phrases with no core to it, He apologizes for other people’s actions of the past, thinking that means something.

Not if those injustices are still alive and well in the present and you don’t see them.

Anyone with drama training can shed a few crocodile tears. So can people clocked for speeding and bawl to the nice police officer not to give them a ticket.

Kids in toy stores can do it, too.

That doesn’t prove you have empathy, respect, or compassion.

I am still haunted by my grandmother’s agonizing death. She chose to live because she didn’t want to be away from her family. To her, she did not want to abandon us and sacrificed everything to look out for us. She worried about how much sleep I got and agonized about my derailed career. She gave me pep talks and advice as she lay dying.

I looked after her 24/7. I had been so focussed on her that I abandoned myself in the bargain. My mother did the same.

And then my mother was diagnosed with cancer and then I was, too a few short weeks later.

We looked after each other. I had to trudge in the snow to walk a long way to the hospital to see my mother after her surgery three weeks after have surgery to remove my left ovary.

They gutted me. My stomach muscle was split in two. I was oozing and in absolute agony. I didn’t take the morphine I was given. I didn’t even pick it up because I could not be under any influence because I had to drive and look after my mother.

And I can barely walk, but I make the trip twice a day to the hospital where my mother lost a lot of blood and had a hard time keeping awake because of it. I had to look after her as I am terrified that my cancer has spread.

But I march to the hospital every day like a soldier. I would go to Fortinos to buy my mother something with flavour to eat as I also would bring her coffee, and try to cheer her up, and I can barely sit in the hospital chair, still in shock that asymptomatic me had motherfucking ovarian cancer.

And then she comes home, and a few weeks later, she has to have another surgery because she had something so rare that the doctor who had to operate never seen it before.

It is a never-ending siege of trauma.

And I know there are people who not only had it as bad, they have it even worse.

They have children with incurable degenerative conditions.

I have a bracelet a student made for me in jewelry summer camp that I taught one year. She was the sweetest, cutest, kindest little girl who took the class so she could make things to raise money for the fatal disease she has.

But she gave me a present because even though she is ill, she wants me to know that she likes me.

And it moves me. If I had the power, I would make her problems disappear.

But I don’t, and it bothers me.

I have known people who are going through extraordinary lengths for their terminally ill children, fighting a brawl with the heavens to extract every extra second at the expense of everything.

And we have a deluded prime minister who has his panties in a knot because his rivals have his number and keep dialling it.

We have never had a prime minister — on the left or right, who put children first.

And no, photo ops of you reading to them doesn’t count. Fuck you.

Neither is giving people money per child — it encourages the wrong kind of people to keep having them for the free money. I used to sit in the solarium and watch outside my old house on Main Street East in Hamilton and see Stroller Row.

We have children in battered women’s shelters. We have children who are sex slaves being passed around and videotaped.

The Grits give money to newspapers who fucked up their own worthless profession — but completely ignore children’s services.

This is vile and disgusting.

I like my art. I like my surrealist paintings, my books, my theremin, my Kintsugi, my Alexander Katsulin pottery, Turkish coffee, and antique furniture.

I like Sherlock Holmes, Han Hoogerbrugge, the Hives, and the Blue Beetle.

I am self-indulgent and eccentric, and if you don’t like it, go fuck yourself.

You aren’t paying my bills. You don’t care that I had cancer. Go to hell. I don’t have respect for your negging.

Because it is all meaningless if you don’t have a moral compass.

And politics isn’t the place you’ll ever find it.

Neither is this neo-Victorian façade. It’s not genuine.

A kinder world comes from empathy and compassion.

That requires vulnerability and connect, not cheap acting stunts and empty words…

Here comes the new boss, same as the old boss...

Paul Godfrey is sort of out of Postmedia. No longer CEO, but still not out out.

Like the brass of Sears Canada, he gets a lofty pay check even though the newspapers under his watch having been doing all so good.

And neither are properties not under the Postmedia banner, such as Billboard and the Hollywood Reporter.

So the new boss is coming, same as the old boss…

Postmedia all but giving up on news; thinks everything is in weed.

It is an interesting turn of events.

Postmedia is cutting back the frequency of four newspapers, including the Kingston Whig-Standard to one day less a week.

They are also removing newspapers they used to send to schools that kids never ready anyway because of cannabis ads, as if people buy weed based on a newspaper ad.

But they are investing in a pot pub instead of a regular news outlet.

It all signals a permanent shift away from journalism. A cannabis publication is a specialty magalogue — an advertorial-based form of advertising that is not different than one dedicated to booze, gambling, or stogies.

Come to think of it, there isn’t a huge demand of those publications, either. Cigar Aficionado, that had its heyday in the 1990s, is probably the best known one. Even nudie rags, such as Playboy and Penthouse don’t have the numbers they used to, either, in print or online.

Hell, groupie rag Star magazine only lasted five issues in 1973. You’d think something dedicated to hedonism and vice would be a sure thing, yet rarely they are. People love and live to do it; they don’t necessarily want to get cerebral about it.

But it is a sign that journalism is no longer a thing, and the overlords are beginning to concede it quietly as they fade away in a smoke cloud…

Starting over in a Post-Journalism World, Part Six.

Self-entitled paranoia. That's the mindset that destroyed journalism, and the signs of the collective mental meltdown are everywhere.

It is no wonder. Postmedia is threatening a lock-out of at its papers because brass want to cut benefits of the skeletal staff that remain at their papers.

But GateHouse is shutting down more papers because there simply is no audience who wants their product.

The Canadian Journalism Foundation, the side gig for broke journalists, are spewing paranoid propaganda talks because they are too dense to get it.

How hopelessly stupid is the CJF? Just read the description for the babble-fest:

CJF J-TALKS
Journalism matters.

Journalists and media organizations around the world are under siege from misinformation fed by social media and an antagonistic U.S. president. How should journalism and democracy respond to this dual challenge? How can journalists ensure truth overrides false information? How should they respond to public attacks and historic levels of mistrust? At the same time, many media are seeking sustainable business models and some are asking: can blockchain technology provide security for the future of journalism?

Under siege. Misinformation. The president is against them! How should they respond to "public attacks" against them?

What is the future of the dead profession of journalism?

The narrative is loaded and rig to protect their fragile egos.

If people are tuning out and calling you out for your garbage, then it is time you actually stop pretending you are without fault, and start looking why you alienated your audience base.

It is not them.

It is you.

They remind me of an abusive spouse who thrashes the other, and then becomes enraged the their mate flees, and then tells the court about the beatings, the terror, and the insults, but the abuser then claims innocence, playing the wronged victim who is being smeared -- and if the other person just came back, gave up their free will, and just took their licks, the world would be great once more.

It is a true sickness to the point of being psychopathic.

And it is time for that sickness to end.

This isn't an actual profession, it is a cult of the dead.

And the world is about life, about the births of new life and ideas.

It is also about rebirth, renewal, and rejuvenation.

It is not about paranoid control freaks upset that the world wised up and dumped them.

But the world still needs to be informed with truth, honesty, humility, bravery, love, and kindness.

Not this garbage. The world deserves better than another pathetic and propagandistic j-talk...

Postmedia shuts down more newspapers...and no, it is not just a broken business model that did it in.

More papers are being closed, and that should surprise no one. Canadian journalism has destroyed itself years ago, but now that the piper has come to collect, newspapers are being taken into the grave.

Journalists and editors are still in absolute denial, blaming a broken business model, which is not an adequate explanation. The entire journalism model is broken beyond repair.

The level of unprofessionalism was always atrocious, but Canadian journalists got away with it for years because they were the only game in town. The Internet broke down those confining gates, and journalists never bothered to keep up with the times. They have always been sloppy, incestuous, deferential to authority, and used sophistry and even propaganda when it suited their purposes.

The National Post is Postmedia's crown jewel, and yet the smaller properties are crumbling all around it -- for a reason.

The Post's dubious shenanigans have subtly helped pull down an entire profession's credibility. They cover events in a blatantly slanted manner...and then one of their writers/lawyers takes two of the "newsmakers" associated with the story as clients.

Once upon a time that would have been a scandal and a textbook case in journalism ethics, but a destroyed profession doesn't muster much ire.

And then there is this "column" by the Post's Barbara Kay -- a wallowing, but by-the-numbers crisis management piece meant not to inform, but to sell shamed mediocre author Steven Galloway.

When I wrote Don't Believe It!, I discussed how the Canadian arm of the PR firm Hill & Knowlton had proffered crisis management advice -- and one of the feints was the use of proxies: having other credible friends, allies, and acquaintances to act as your mouthpiece without seeming to be your proxy.

This column is a classic proxy rehab feint -- it has every element of crisis communications in it, making it a serious conflict of interest that Kay has no business writing -- and the Post had no business printing.

But the Kay family has a peculiar obsession with Galloway. While Barbara Kay supposedly disclosed one association in her article, it is not exactly complete. Her son Jonathon Kay has also subjectively shilled for Galloway's innocence in public -- and I had been there at one very bad J-talk at Facebook's Toronto offices where the topic was about journalism and truth. Of course, there was no actual discussion of it, just an obsession with Chartbeat -- but out of the blue, son Kay went on an irrelevant tangent about poor, little Galloway -- he too, was pushing forth proxy image rehabilitation -- and he wasn't disclosing why this was so important to him.

When there is more to the story -- the right thing for the Post to do was not to publish something very questionable -- but it got worse for another reason -- and a highly deceptive one.

The Galloway Affair was a pre-#MeToo incident -- and the article's headline and content implies this was a #MeToo thing -- and this was a shady implication as a column could possibly get.

Why?

Because it was a very different social atmosphere at the time of Galloway's ouster from UBC.

#MeToo is an American phenomenon, not a Canadian one. The Galloway Affair was not inspired by #MeToo. It was not part of a movement. It wasn't a bandwagon knee-jerk incident. It was not inspired by the success of #MeToo as that movement did not exist and it was not common for women to come forward at the time. Even in the final report, Galloway did not come off as a wronged innocent; so he is not some poor little boy.

He is a professional communicator. He makes his living as a communicator. He was in charge of teaching university students the art of communicating. He cannot make any claim of not being able to communicate clearly to anyone.

He had a free and easy pass with the Canadian Media Establishment and Elite -- many who wrote an open letter defending the little boy.

Just as the Kays are doing for him now.

To link the Galloway Affair with #MeToo is deceptive: he wasn't part of #MeToo. Kesha was also a pre-#MeToo case -- and she was flayed alive by other women. Jian Ghomeshi was also pre-#MeToo, and his accusers were disbelieved because they had things to do with him after he smacked them around -- as if this wasn't typical behaviour. Women are murdered by their husbands who abused them -- so we know it's a thing.

So Galloway wasn't a #MeToo witch who was hunted. His case was no where near it.

He behaved unprofessionally, and he had all sorts of Establishment cheerleaders running to defend him. For Kay to misuse newspaper space to babble and shield him is astounding.

Memo to Barbara Kay: If Mr. Galloway has something to say, let him write a book about it himself. You aren't his mommy -- and neither is your son. Both of you are way too emotionally involved to babble in professional settings about it.

But for the Post to enable such non-journalistic image repairing is unconscionable.

However, this is par for the course in Canadian journalism: always running to defend little friends with big titles who do very sketchy things and get caught, as real issues get ignored.

It is no wonder that Postmedia is deep in debt and hard up for readers. It is not just a bad business model.

It is a rotten journalism model, too...

Re-branding failure: Propping up the Metro brand.

The free newspaper Metro is failing, and now that failure is being re-branded with the Torstar name. Metro is under Torstar's Free Daily News Group Inc. banner. This is a mere re-naming. There is "expanding", only consolidating, and using Torstar's name to try to reverse the chain's sagging fortunes. Metro is to Torstar as Versus is to Versace -- a diffusion line -- a cheaper brand to the original.

These cluster of papers are the subject of investigation by the Competition Bureau with Torstar's deal with Postmedia, with a couple of these titles shut down after the deal.

The sunny spinning of rot is meant to smooth over these rough inconveniences. It is the same newspaper with the same dismal fortunes; the only difference is this is a last desperate push, but it won't change what is happening or where these papers are inevitably headed...

Is there hope for journalism? Not a chance. There is too much rot. Why the world needs a fresh start.

There is a Pollyanna mindset in those whose destroyed journalism. Some way, somehow, they think the mess will clean up itself. It's a mindset from those who grew up sheltered with parents who often have clout as their offspring seek attention and have their sunny dispositions shaped by weed. Journalism is not a profession where being mellow is an asset. You have cutthroats and grifters who know how to manipulate optics -- and even data to paint an inaccurate picture of what is really happening. Of course, not everyone in the business came from privilege, but enough to see what happens when you have not faced consequences in the eye, let alone stared death in the face.

It is not as if things may look bad, but something will save the day. It's unfixable in its current form.

Both Torstar and Postmedia are the subjects of a Competition Bureau probe, but so what? They did what they said they'd do -- close down newspapers. The end.

It is not as if these were thriving newspapers. They were closed because they weren't. They went past the point of no return.

But you still have reporters believing they can somehow trick people into saving them with ridiculous optimistic campaigns, such as  Journalism Matters.

Always begging for money, of course.

Even if reporters pretend to be pessimistic as they "question" those assertions, they will pin the blame on factors unrelated to the heart of their problems, such as newsrooms being too white and male, before trying to find a saviour, such as "data journalism."

Nah.

The critical problem isn't that journalism is "white" and "male." It doesn't matter what the packaging happens to be -- the same mindset is prevalent in the entire profession. No one has made a single fundamental change.

And data journalism? As if companies can't fudge data or authorities cannot get it wrong -- or keep information back? As if there aren't flawed measurements? You never heard that figures can't lie, but liars can figure?

Really? Really?

Because journalism's collapse is global in scale.

It isn't just a thing that happened in just North America, the self-proclaimed centre of the universe, where ex-reporters of the Denver Post are sobbing a little too late. Other races and cultures made the same mess of things, too.

We have people from every other country questioning the way journalism is doing its job, such as this sharp column from Pakistan's Daily Times.

But you have CNN's Chris Cillizza in La La Land, with "analysis" that is nothing more than childish conjecture about Donald Trump being some sort of real life "reality show" (memo to Cillizza, do you actually comprehend that all major newsmakers could say the same thing as their lives were always under the media microscope?), as if journalism could have any virtuous airs about them.

At least former CNN Soledad O'Brien called out Cillizza for his devoid analysis,  rightfully pointing out that it is that kind of worthless junk that turned millions of people away from traditional journalism, though Cillizza was too thick to get it.

So is there hope for a dead profession?

No.

But journalism can be replaced with an alternative that has far more than hope -- but the power to transform and engage the world again...

 

The Competition Bureau pays a little visit to Postmedia and Torstar...

This visit is not a common occurrence. As in, unprecedented. The massive newspaper swap late last year raised eyebrows, but usually, despite the high media concentration going on in Canada for decades, the Bureau usually doesn't pay attention (Toronto Star has finally made a mention of it, but both the Star and the National Post relied on the Canadian Press article here). competition-bureau

But this time, they searched the offices and had a nice little chat with the two groups.

Yes, they had search warrants.

First Newsweek gets raided in the US. Now two of the largest newspaper chains in Canada are paid a visit for different reasons...

But once upon a time, when outlets got searched and served warrants, it was because they were uncovering government corruption, and they were being searched to see who were their sources; so those leaks could get plugged.

Now, it is happening for vastly different reasons...