Monthly Archives: October 2010

Great Moments in Canadian Literature

Since we’ve been talking about Christie Blatchford’s new book, Helpless (the story of Caledonia), we’re reminded of another of our most favouritest treasures in Canadian literature, to wit:

Something of an inside Canadian joke, but if you’re an active Canadian conservative, the smiles are all yours… Enjoy!

And while we’re on about Mark Steyn, catch him in London (ont) Monday night:


Helpless, by Christie Blatchford

Bringing stories closer to home, this new book by Christie is a must read for all Canadians, not just those of Ontario; potentially the most important piece of Canadian reportage for the next decade.

I picked up my copies (one for me, one to distribute) yesterday and in the words of one SDA commenter:

Just had it delivered from a pre-order. I don’t know if I can take reading it, I’d hate to end every day angry for a while.

Published by Doubleday Canada, and available at all major booksellers, and online, just Google “Helpless Blatchford”.

The Toronto Sun’s Peter Worthington:

“A lot of us have watched goings-on at Caledonia since 2006 when protestors from the nearby Six Nations reserve began blocking development and behaving in a manner that if others had done it, they’d be arrested.

I avoided comment on events there, because I wasn’t sure of the relationship between lawlessness and aboriginal rights. I was uneasy about confusing one with the other. That’s my excuse.

Since reading Helpless by Christie Blatchford, a new book detailing the controversy, I don’t have that excuse any more.”

Christie Blatchford, being interviewed by Michael Coren about her book and the stories it details:


Liberalism, defined

“The Dunning–Kruger effect is a cognitive bias in which an unskilled person makes poor decisions and reaches erroneous conclusions, but their incompetence denies them the metacognitive ability to realize their mistakes.[1] The unskilled therefore suffer from illusory superiority, rating their own ability as above average, much higher than it actually is, while the highly skilled underrate their abilities, suffering from illusory inferiority. This leads to the situation in which less competent people rate their own ability higher than more competent people. It also explains why actual competence may weaken self-confidence: because competent individuals falsely assume that others have an equivalent understanding. “Thus, the miscalibration of the incompetent stems from an error about the self, whereas the miscalibration of the highly competent stems from an error about others.[2]”

SDA Editorial: Headline: Derisive Slur Used in Headlines

Headline: Derisive Slur Used in Headlines Go to the link and participate in the discussion…

When the CBC, or CTV, or any network – whether it’s CNN, MSNBC, ABC, or any other – is the subject of either a newspaper news story or opinion column, the headline will inevitably describe the network by it’s name, not by a euphemistic slur; you’ll never see the headline “The LPC Promotional Network Thwarts Access to Information Requests,” for example, in a story about the CBC. Yet for some reason newspaper headlines commonly refer to Sun TV News as “Fox News North.” Try it: if you Google “Fox News North,” you’ll get more than twice as many results as by Googling the actual name, “Sun TV News.”

The phrase “Fox News North” is typically put in quote marks, of course, to indicate that the headline writer is using a euphemism, a slur, or, in most instances, both. Scott Feschuk’s piece at, for example, is titled “The secret script for ‘Fox News North‘”; another Macleans article has the headline “Can ‘Fox News North‘ win its next battle?” The Canadian Press published a report titled “‘Fox News North‘ set to launch in Toronto.” The The Financial Post published “‘Fox News of the North‘ to launch in Canada”.

On and on it goes. Reuters: “‘Fox News North‘ channel set to launch in Canada.” The Globe and Mail: “Margaret Atwood takes on ‘Fox News North.'” Toronto Life: “Fox News North accepts defeat.”

Sometimes the intended slur is used absent the quotes, which, in proper grammatical usage, indicates that it’s the actual name of the proposed network. Heather Mallick’s article in The Star was titled “Fox News North is a rancid idea”; in the National Post, Tasha Kheiriddin’s piece – and she’s a supporter of Sun TV News’ application – was titled “Fox News North a welcome addition to Canadian media jungle”; Norman Spector’s story in The Globe And Mail was headlined “The real deal behind Fox News North.”

When a headline uses the correct name, Sun TV News, the phrase “Fox News North” inevitably finds its way into the text. This G&M column by John Doyle, titled “I Guess Sun TV News only works if shoved down our throats,” goes on to say “The really interesting thing all this shows about the proposed Fox News North is that…” This news story in The Star, headlined “Former Harper spokesman leaves Sun TV News”, then refers to “Quebecor’s bid to launch a new cable news network that critics have dubbed ‘Fox News North.'”

Critics have dubbed…”

That’s the whole point, isn’t it? It’s a slur, intended as a scare-tactic, used by critics who want to stop the channel from being approved by the CRTC. So why do so many “news” organizations – particularly those who support the application – use the term in their headlines? Why aren’t dismissive slurs used in the headlines of stories about other networks?

Free advice to outlets who support the application to the CRTC: Stop using the detractors’ sneering description of the proposed network in your headlines. Use its real, actual name instead – Sun TV News.

What a concept. Posted by EBD at October 6, 2010 7:49 PM

From the comments:

“Heather Mallick’s article in The Star was titled “Fox News North is a rancid idea”; in the National Post”

Should be simplified to “Heather Mallick is a rancid idea”

That’s better . . .
Posted by: Fred at October 6, 2010 8:12 PM

All the examples you show are PRECISELY why we need SunTV to be much like Fox News.

Just as they relentless attack Sarah Palin, George Bush, Ann Coulter, and others on the right, what they attack most is what they fear most. Currently that is the content, style, liveliness, originality and ultimately the huge commercial SUCCESS of a “Fox News North” … they are all puckered so tightly they could sh!t through the eye of a needle!
Posted by: Davers6 at October 6, 2010 8:17 PM

I am just a retired rural white guy. In Ontario.

The only news channel I watch is Fox. Perhaps 5-6 hours a day. when I’m working in the garage, that is what is on. The only Canadian news I watch is CFTO at 6 just in case McGuinty has stepped in it again. He seems to do that regularly.

The rest of the time I get my information from Bourque, Drudge, SDA, Insta, Rantburg.

So I’m not sure I care if Sun TV works or not. I am more concerned that BellTv seems to think that I should get MSNBC on HD.

Back to fighting the stinking giant fans….
Posted by: john at October 6, 2010 8:59 PM

Being called “Fox news North” is better than being called Communist Broadcasting Corp.
Posted by: Pissedoff at October 6, 2010 9:08 PM

No, … it’s not a compliment. Supporters of the station might think so, but that doesn’t make the right-wing, American, Christian” meme inherent in the slur a selling point in Canada.

The problem with *the media* – particularly the news media – constantly using “Fox News North” in lieu of using the proposed network’s actual name is that, first of all, the term “Fox News North” is used as *a slur* to scare people who *aren’t* conservatives, and to make them mad, and to help organize those oppose the application. Secondly, and most importantly, *IT’S NOT THE NAME OF THE NETWORK.*

Suppose someone came up with a catchy derisive slur for the CBC: do you think news organizations would ever constantly, casually use the euphemistic slur in *headlines* to straightforward news stories about the CBC?
Posted by: EBD at October 6, 2010 9:31 PM

Al Reuters: “News channel set to launch in Canada apparently ready to label those who commit terrorist acts terrorists. Arab stringers express concern.”

CBS Canada: “Fox News North unlikely to meet ‘Fake but Accurate’ gold standard. Claims “accurate” is sufficient.”

Macleans: “Can ‘Fox News North’ win its inevitable battles with Canada’s HRCs? A roundtable discussion by Macleans editors on this topic, while touching on the lack of self-awareness so prevalent in Canadian media today.”

New York Times North: “Profitable Media Outlets a Rancid Idea”. Maureen Dowd North says conservatives are “icky” and “probably have cooties…and not the treatable kind I described in my last column!”
Posted by: Matt Hillier at October 6, 2010 9:35 PM

EBD makes valid points regarding Canadian MSM using “Fox North” as a slur as opposed to the correct “SUN TV News.”

I have previously used the “FOX North” moniker my self.

Putting the issue in the derogatory and uncomplimentary light used by Canadian MSM is well worth pointing out to SDA readers across this Globe, the malicious attitude which corporate MSM and their lickspittle leftist journalists hold toward conservatism and its adherents.
Posted by: Joe Molnar at October 6, 2010 11:16 PM

We vote with our money. OUR money. NOT the money the government confiscates for running the CBC. We actually choose to PAY for Fox News.
Canada could use a cable channel where we could get coverage that actually comes close to the truth. We have been manipulated for years by the liberal media in both countries. Fox News Channel is the ONLY channel that gives anybody ANYTHING close to what is really going on instead of the fantasies indulged in 24/7 by all other channels on both sides of the border. It might even be that we could get down to the realities of the parlimentary abuses we allow and kick out the bloc. THAT is what all these libs are afraid of. They might actually lose their monoply on trashy social comment that offends decent folk so much.
IF Canadians had a decent cable channel to watch we not only would be willing to pay for it but would delight in watching the left get skewered regularly. What we need now is a Bill O’Reilly or Rush Limbaugh or Laura Ingraham NORTH. When Sun TV goes on the air we will hear and see much more of the likes of Ezra Levant, perhaps Mark Steyn.
Could we hope for Kathy Shaidle and others?
This , when thought about in a positive way, is so much exciting than watching the liberal media pee all over themselves trying to make sure Sun TV never exists at all.

Posted by: Snowbunnie at October 6, 2010 11:17 PM

Ironically, MSM’s claim that Sun News TV would be biased if it goes to air while, as EBD points out, incorporating its critics’ slur into their reports while omitting those used against themselves, only serves to further cement their own bias — tangible, documented, in-your-face bias witnessed on a daily basis, unlike the kind they allege from a network that hasn’t even gone to air yet. How many times are they going to shoot themselves in the foot before they realize they can’t control the message anymore?

Bit OT but what I loved watching today was various CTV reporters either interviewing BELL president Kevin Crull, filing reports on him or having discussions about the man who will be taking over operations at CTV. As predicted, it was a suck-up job.

The funny thing is that everyone remembers reporters from CTV banding together with their colleagues at both CBC and Global, along with the many affiliates of each, to denounce the cable and satellite providers (including BELL, of course) and their position on the fee-for-carriage issue a year ago. CTV reporters were especially harsh in their reporting, with the issue of such principle importance not only to them but to the entire CTV team, who ran ads during commercial breaks, appealing to the public to put whatever pressure they could on gov’t to see that BELL did get its evil ways.

So what of all these CTV reporters now? What’s their stated position on the fee-for-carriage issue? And what will it be when that issue come up for debate again? We’re all interested. Can we expect to see them file reports that attack BELL’s position on the matter? After all, it wasn’t just about saving their jobs, right? It was the PRINCIPLE of the matter. Will they file reports telling us how unfair BELL is being? Or will they tell us how WRONG the CBC and Global now are on the issue? What happened to the whole brothers-in-arms thing anyway?

Fact is, they will look us all through the lens and, with straight faces, with no twitching, with no degree of discomfort whatsoever, do a complete 180 on the matter.

Give these people credit for acting. To pull off such a thing requires great skill and discipline… or just lacking any moral compass.
Posted by: Media Flayer 2.0 at October 7, 2010 1:10 AM

Not long ago QR news in Calgary was ranting the whole morning about some aspect of Sun TV’s status, and every newscast called them Fox news north, by 11 I had had enough and phoned the news director and asked him if he hated money, his reply was “why no”. I asked him why he would disparage an organization like Fox News with their little CBC inspired gutter snipes, when Fox makes boat loads of money, would he not like more money and why dump on success, did he hate success. That was the last time I heard that slant on Sun TV on QR. We can make a difference, and we had better start. before the Mallicks and other assorted angry faces in the current Canadian Media start ordering those little red buttons the British lefties like to use on innocent school children that don’t believe in gaia.
Posted by: bartinsky at October 7, 2010 1:15 AM

“Ironically, MSM’s claim that Sun News TV would be biased if it goes to air while….incorporating its critics’ slur into their reports while omitting those used against themselves, only serves to further cement their own bias — tangible, documented, in-your-face bias witnessed on a daily basis, unlike the kind they allege from a network that hasn’t even gone to air yet.”

It cements their own bias in terms of long-term legacy, but they’re not really thinking about that now. For the CBC, and the Star, etc., there is, in the short term, a certain calculated efficacy in mounting a fear-mongering disinformation campaign against Sun TV News; their long-term credibility is the least of their concerns at the moment.

They have been clearly displaying just how desperate they are to control the message, and, more to the point, who’s allowed to be the messenger, but even so, the fact that a – clearly specious – name-calling slur drummed up by Sun TV’s opponents has in effect become the descriptor – the *name* – of the proposed network in the bulk of “news” reports – especially headlines – is vile, inexcusable, and unacceptable.

Again – and I don’t mean to repeat myself ad nauseum – can you imagine a euphemistic smear job description of CBC news – “Lib Crony Network”, for example – being used more often in news/opinion coverage than the actual name “The CBC”?
Posted by: EBD at October 7, 2010 1:49 AM

There’s a lot of politics involved, the Liberal Left fear losing their power to bend and twist facts to manipulate opinion. With Sun TV News on the scene they feel threatened, they will be challenged and certainly will lose viewership.

When it comes to fact or fiction, tabloid or reality, we will have a choice, that’s what they’re all in knots about.
Posted by: Liz J at October 7, 2010 7:07 AM