|Green Island Letters
First in the Deeper Truths series
As goes Democracy, so goes Journalism ... as goes Journalism, so goes Democracy- an open letter to Susan Delacourt, re her column How big data and thinking small could help save journalism Feb 5, 2016
- and due to a somewhat flood of similar articles at this particular time, CC's to:
Dear Ms Delacourt, et al en passant, this seems 'deeper truth' enough to share around a bit
I write in regard to the above column(s), in which you variously worry about 'the state of journalism' in Canada, which has, as you note, been the topic of much hand-wringing soul-searching on the part of many who call themselves 'journalists' the last few years, as fewer and fewer Canadians listen to or read (or believe) what you want to tell them, and more and more of the established print media are closing their doors or reducing their 'product' in response to (they say) lowered revenues etc, which further reduces their readership due to even less decent content, and on it goes, around and around, in a kind of death spiral.
There's a kind of tragi-comic irony going on here you or most other self-styled Canadian 'journalists' probably haven't yet caught on to, which would be: 'Journalism' is dying in Canada (and all English speaking countries of course, but I'll confine this short note to Canada and the Canadian media) - because it has shot itself in the head, probably, at least for those wishing to call themselves 'journalists' and not 'management', unwittingly. Good adjective, unwittingly, in this situation, with a couple of layers of meaning. Self-destruction not without guilt, perhaps, but probably without intention.
The key insight most of you seem to be missing is this: A robust journalism thrives in a robust democracy. Democracy and Journalism are kind of like Truth and Beauty - find one, you find the other. And the converse is equally true - when one is corrupted, it is impossible for the other to thrive. Or to put it another somewhat more relevant way, kill a democracy, and (real) journalism is no longer needed. Or wanted. 'Democracy' in Canada, full of such hope and promise in the 1960s and 70s, is, in the 2000s, after 30 years of a very well planned and sophisticated insidious 'degrade and destroy' attack from within, a dead thing walking, an empty shell, which is of course closely related to the fact that a central enabler of the destruction of our once almost great democracy has been the morphing of a once great journalism in the country back in the 1960s and 70s into a 21st century very Orwellian Ministry of Truth, many voices speaking from many heads pretending to offer 'diversity', but with one controlling brain, a brain dedicated to dumbing down, to propaganda, to gossip, to gatekeeping, to replacing 'news for engaged, intelligent citizens' with spectacle and mush for dumbed down, very much not engaged hivemind drones who think gossip and spectacle are 'news', and propaganda is reality. A media not only not 'looking out for' the Canadians they claim to serve, but actively participating in the destruction of their once-almost-great democracy.
The very worst kind of Judas-ism, selling out your fellow citizens for a few pieces of silver, a few cushy overseas trips, being allowed to call yourselves 'journalists' as you push mush and spectacle and propaganda as 'news' and relegate any real 'journalism' to the internet, and label those who try to practice real journalism 'conspiracy theorists' and other derogatory terms.
You and yours have a lot to answer for, Ms Delacourt, the death of a once great journalistic tradition and the very related death of democracy in Canada being only the proximate crimes, but with many terrible things arising from that basic betrayal being done to our people and country from the media they trusted to keep them informed.
You might compare your current presence in Canada to cancer - there comes a point when the cancer becomes so successful it kills its host. And the once great journalism of Canada has been taken over by a kind of cancer, or even worse a self-administered cancer, and is now and has been for some time the secretariat for those involved with the killing of what was once on the verge of being a great world class democracy here in Canada - and now that they have more or less succeeded, you're not needed anymore.
That's the 'tragi-comic irony' I mentioned earlier - bet you weren't told that as you moved your loyalty during the last couple of decades from 'we the people' to 'they the new corporatocracy', that when 'they' succeeded in 'degrading and destroying' the threatening Democracy, your services would no longer be needed. Those of you who accepted your new role as purveyors of mush and spectacle and propaganda might stay on, and to continue the charade you can even pretend you are 'journalists' as the equally traitorous politicians are calling themselves 'parliamentarians' trying to create a reason for respect where none exists, a label they degrade by applying it to themselves as you degrade the label 'journalist', but seriously, folks, don't go looking places we don't want looked at. And we don't, sir, we don't.
If your immediate reaction to this 'deeper truth' is some kind of honest protest that 'we do so have a robust journalism here!!' - well, let me be charitable, and suggest you have been so deep in the forest for so long, you are unable to see the bigger picture of what has been happening, what is happening now. Or the 'frog in boiling water' analogy would also be applicable - the turning from a great journalistic tradition back in the 60s to the current state propaganda media has been insidious and only slowly changed our once great media into the Pravda-like propaganda it has become over many years, and those in the midst of it may not realise what has happened. Or may not have wished to.
But denial is not really an option right now, Ms Delacourt, as we move ever closer to the pretend-democracy corporatist 'new world order' you have helped put in place, as you see the 'journalist' title you once proudly bore become a sad joke, as people calling themselves 'journalists' spread mush and spectacle as if it were 'news', openly engage in at times quite risible propaganda, truly of the coldwar Soviet style of obviously ludicrous nonsense ('Russian aggression'!!), and actively gatekeep information of vital importance to the people still trying to think for themselves in our country. I think most of the 'new' people calling themselves 'journalists' actually have no idea of what the profession is all about, they seem to be operating at the level of children playing pretend games in a sandbox, they seem to believe their opinions are 'news', or teenage gossip (Ford, Duffy, Ghomeshi, etc etc) is 'news!!', asking crying ladies how they felt when they saw their baby die in front of them is 'news', and so on - a completely unprofessional generation with apparently no idea at all of real journalism. And it seems those of you who are 'senior' are accepting this sh** as well, as none of you seem to push back, none of you seem interested in challenging power with hard questions as you spread the propaganda about 'terrorism', 'evil monsters we have to bomb!!', as you participate in the gossipfests and refuse to examine issues of real concern in anywhere near the depth the gossip gets - consider the breathless reporting of the Ford gossipfest, the Duffy trial, the Ghomeshi trial, all relatively minor things, with the coverage of seriously important things such as the 'new improved' so-called 'trade' deals such as the TPP or CETA or the TTIP/ISDS - I've heard more about Ghomeshi any day in the last week than I've heard about these major proposed 'trade' deals (that aren't really 'trade' deals at all but 'reducing the power of Democracy' things you in the media are helping to sell) in - well, than I've ever heard, quite frankly, from your corporate media (CBC, Star, GM, NP, etc) about these far, far, FAR more important things in the last year or more, including the 78-day long pretend-election campaign which found an endless list of trivia and non-'issues' to talk about without going anywhere near these truly important things (of course, any true journalist would be noting another central fact - vote for whom you will, you're still getting governed of, by and for Bay St money ...) - and that, Ms Delacourt, is pushing spectacle to cover up news of importance.
You need to face the fact Ms Delacourt - to actual thinking people out here - there are a few of us left who still do what we have to do to understand what is happening in our country and world, regardless of your sadly successful efforts the last few years to dumb down and indoctrinate everyone - the Canadian media, along with all of the western English media, has become a joke, a dangerous and tragic joke, but a joke, with no credibility at all in things of importance, with gossip and spectacle and mush and propaganda leading the way at all times - which is at the center of why people are not reading the so-called 'mainstream' corporate media any more, and turning to the internet, where all voices are allowed to speak, and the intelligent citizen decides for him or herself who or what to believe, rather than you people gatekeeping voices whose thoughts and insights you don't want them thinking about. (believe me, Ms Delacourt, the Cdn mainstream media looks very, very sad when compared with the intelligent adults talking to other intelligent adults in a truthful adult way about issues rather than gossip available in many places now on the internet, such as RT ...)
I won't bother writing any more, as I strongly suspect you know the things I say here are true, but it is your job, as an aware and willing part of the corporate state propaganda ministry, to keep Canadians from understanding them, and I will say, should this be the case, that you and yours have been doing a very good job of lying to Canadians and leading them to places we should not be going. But should you have any honest concern about these things, should you actually be a frog lulled into accepting an evil situation so slowly over time you really did not see it happening, or have been keeping some terrible suspicions you must have felt from time to time locked away in dark locked rooms with curtains across the front, so deep in the forest unable to see it for the trees, then for some elucidation of what is happening, rather than repeating it all here, I would direct you to a letter I wrote a couple of years ago to the CBC , concerning much the same thing, their assertion they were doing 'great journalism!!' when in fact they have been, as has the entire Canadian media, engaged in a massive fraud, a fraud about 'terrorism', a fraud about 'debt' and 'austerity', a fraud about 'trade' treaties, a fraud, most deeply hurtful, about the very profession of 'journalism' we all rely on in these modern times to keep us informed of important things - there is absolutely no doubt that the CBC, as an organisation, and thus all of their senior staff, the Judases Canadians trust so deeply, is completely complicit in the evils I speak of. The things I write of are completely beyond defence or refutation, and the fact that many Canadians understand this - the more intelligent and engaged Canadians who actually care about what is going on in their country and world, not the younger ones addicted to the mush and gossip and trivia on the hivemindphones they are all plugged into 24/7 all the better to control your thoughts grandma - is the one thing that gives me hope still.
For evil, the kind of evil we see now trying to take over Canada and much of the western world through lies and violence and deception, all greatly enabled by a completely traitorous media, has raised its head many times in the past, and eventually, every time, the greater mass of good and innocent folk eventually drive it back.
As we will this time.
Democracy - and real journalism - will return to Canada. Some day. And not on little tiny wheels, but with the great roaring voice of Truth and Beauty which will always prevail, in the end.