Monday, December 19, 2011

2011 in Photos

The left wing media bias rears its ugly head.



Michael Ignatieff proves he's not an elitist.

Stephen Haper in 2006: "Meeting celebrities was the other guy's schtick". Since then, he's been rather "hot and cold" on that subject, one could say.

Cabinet Meeting at 24 Sussex.

How could anyone have know she would interupt the speech? It's not like she had pictures of herself and Michael Ignatieff on her Facebook wall...

The biggest threat to democracy - 14 year old girls.

Merv TweedRod Bruinooge, one of those Tim Hortons Tories, stumps for votes during a hotly contested speaker's election.







Sadly, there were no pictures of Justin Trudeau and Rob Ford dancing together.



Ed Stelmach and his wife share a lighter moment at his resignation press conference.

22 Comments:

  • The very existence of that Sun Cover is testament to the fact that our democracy is broken. There is no reasonable chance of having a democracy in a context in which the primary media sources are this biased. And there is no system of control of such nonsense on the horizon. Could you imagine if the Toronto Star had run a front page photo of Harper dressed as Hitler the day after the election? People would have gone crazy! But the Sun can de facto call McGuinty Satan and it is all ok.

    By Blogger kirbycairo, at 10:28 AM  

  • At least Iggy didn't eat the hot dog with a knife and fork! :)

    .. and the Star is every bit as biased as the Sun is.

    By Anonymous Michael F, at 11:21 AM  

  • Kirbycairo: I agree that cover is horrible, but the Sun is a private newspaper and they can do what they want.

    Democracy requires free and independent reporting, but it doesn't need to be unbiased.

    Michael F: You're right that the star is just as bad (worse!), but they're private, too.

    By Blogger Robert Vollman, at 1:43 PM  

  • "You're right that the star is just as bad (worse!"

    Robert pretty much everything you post here is 100 percent wrong. With this whopper your streak continues. The Sun chain of newspapers are just plain awful. They are in fact so bad that no other (mainstream) media source in Canada comes even close.

    By Anonymous MPAVictoria, at 2:33 PM  

  • the picture of the guy in starbucks is not Merv Tweed.

    By Anonymous Don M, at 2:38 PM  

  • I said 6 things:
    - The SUN cover is horrible
    - The SUN is private
    - Democracy requires free and independent reporting
    - Reporting doesn't need to be unbiased
    - The Star is just as biased as the Sun
    - The Star is private

    Since you say that "pretty much everything I post here is 100% wrong", that means that you think:

    - The SUN cover is just fine
    - The SUN is public
    - Democracy doesn't require free nor independent reporting
    - Reporting needs to be unbiased
    - The Star is not as biased as the Sun
    - The Star is public

    Is that what you really think MPAVictoria??? You really think this 2nd list is more accurate than the 1st?

    No - chances are you exagerrating because you disagree with an occasional opinion of mine.

    By Blogger Robert Vollman, at 3:28 PM  

  • Satan - evil, but totally mythical, character.
    Hitler - notorious, genocidal historical character.

    I'd say being compared to a real life genocidal maniac trumps being compared to a mythical, albeit seriously evil, being any day.

    At any rate, Godwin's Law would have kicked in, thus making the Star the automatic loser of the point it was trying to make.

    By Anonymous Jim R, at 3:53 PM  

  • Robert you can't even be correct regarding your own posts. You didn't say "The Star is just as biased as the Sun" you said it was worse. I stand by my statement. You are the Bill Kristol of this blog and I wish more people would call you out on it.

    By Anonymous MPAVictoria, at 3:57 PM  

  • I get called out plenty, but generally by people who make their point without exagerrating and without comparing me to people you dislike.

    Though I appreciate your unintended flattery, it's actually not as hard to correct my mistakes or disagree with my opinions as you seem to think.

    By Blogger Robert Vollman, at 4:31 PM  

  • Aside from choice in decor & side-of-the-fence, the Sun and the Star are exactly the same: total hogwashed bias claiming to be news.

    I disagree with Robert on one major point:
    ---- Reporting doesn't need to be unbiased

    I feel it should be, and I don't accept that private ownership provides a licence to lie & misrepresent. We give the press special legal rights & privileges and we have a right to expect some strain of honesty in return. Bias is inherent to humans but we should not accept it from a free press too blindly - they take it as encouragement.

    Not to get personal but MPAVictoria doesn't even accept that PM candidates in 2012 need to be bilingual in Fr and Eng to be taken seriously. Robert's not such a bad guy.

    By Anonymous Jacques Beau Verte, at 4:43 PM  

  • I would have to say that the Sun is worse than the Star for a variety of political and non-political reasons.

    The Star is definitely not favourable to the Conservative Party, but it did endorse Harper in 2008 and often takes a contrarian point of view and is not automatically a Liberal supporting paper. They have been highly critical of McGuinty's government and were highly critical of Chretien's and Martin's. You will also, eventually somewhere in the article, get to the other point of view, with the Sun articles tend to give only the preferred take.

    The Sun clearly is automatically supportive of the Conservative Party and conservatives. Sun News is worse: it was organized by Harper operatives, with Harper's active participation, while they were in government and is currently quite full of former Harper Party staffers with a clear partisan mandate.

    The Star every day gives op-ed pieces to the full spectrum of opinion. The Sun papers, other than Kinsella, who isn't conservative? And there isn't a single non-arch conservative-on-their-sleeves show host on Sun News.

    As for just plain old non-political stuff, both are sensationalist-driven but only the Sun has a pin up photo and puts up crazy and insultingly dumb front page photos/covers like the one above. To say nothing of the 4/5 of every page dedicated to ads over content. To say nothing of the emptiness of the paper as far as coverage of anything. It's like one of those free subway dailies for depth, only with an outrageous and partisan side.

    I can't stand the actual writing of either paper - it is so anodine and poorly written - but I would pick up the Star if I wanted to find out about something.

    By Blogger Ted Betts, at 6:14 PM  

  • Should say Rod Bruinooge instead of Tweed :)

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:44 PM  

  • Both have a bias but the Sun is definitely aimed at a more extreme demographic and it shows in its more vitriolic tone. The Star is a more bland inoffensive mainstream left of centre publication. The real hardcore lefties read "alternative" stuff like Rabble and Straight Goods. The Sun appeals to the types who think the Consevatives arent conservative enough and thats frightening.

    By Blogger KC, at 2:41 AM  

  • @Vollman - It is not simply a matter of private organizations or how biased this or that media source is. The issue is when you take the media outlets as a group, if they essentially ALL support one political viewpoint, then democracy becomes problematic. In other words it is overall bias which is a problem not individual bias.

    The second point is that by hyping the media organizations as "Private" and therefore free to say what they want - that would make sense in a context of an actual "free" market of media but none such market exists. Rather we have the CRTC and other organizations which legislate not only what the media can say or do but the very existence of media organizations through licensing. The market is an illusion and the CRTC's treatment of Al Jezera demonstrates. s

    By Blogger kirbycairo, at 7:39 AM  

  • Thanks for the corrections on Tweed. I'll obviously fail miserably if I ever appear as a contestant on "know your CPC backbenchers".

    By Blogger calgarygrit, at 9:54 AM  

  • Ideologically, the Sun and Star may be equally polar, but I do think the Star scores a bit higher on the journalistic standards scales. Maybe not a lot higher, but a bit higher.

    By Blogger calgarygrit, at 9:55 AM  

  • The Star or the Sun? Do we prefer pig shit or cow shit?


    Read the The National Post if you want good writing and good journalism. The Globe and Mail used to be even better, but since it's going broke, it can't afford to be a quality paper any longer.

    But of course what should tick us all off is the CBC, which has no right to bias - but is absurdly leftist.

    - Brian from Toronto

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:11 AM  

  • No way that the Star endorsed Harper in 2008 -- it endorsed "Anyone but Harper" that year. Last time it endorsed the Tories was Bob Stanfield in 1974, as they supported wage/price controls. (Which shows, I suppose, that they weren't in the unions' pockets, because the unions opposed that.)

    But I'll say this about the paper: they have a great sports section. Anyone who grew up in Toronto knows that the Star was the paper to get, for that.

    And isn't that what really matters from day to day? We can find our political news elsewhere.

    By Blogger Ben (The Tiger on Politics), at 11:07 AM  

  • Thanks to everyone who proved how easy it is to disagree with me without exagerration or insults.

    JBV: I never said private media should be allowed to lie. We have laws against that.

    Ted: Agree with all your non-political reasons why the Sun is worse, but the Sun goes after the Conservatives more often (for reasons explained by KC).

    KC: Agree with you on the vitriol (good point) but when you use the word "frightening" to describe conservatives you have no word left to describe extremists (fundamentalists, hate groups, anarchists, etc).

    Kirbycairo: All of them supporting one political viewpoint wouldn't happen when you have free and independent reporting, because eventually the market would demand another (that's why all these right-wing news sources have popped up). And the market would also demand an unbiased news source, if one didn't exist.

    Brian: I agree with you on the CBC.

    Ben: Yes, you have your facts straight, it had been 30 years since the Star has endorsed the Conservatives. 2008 it endorsed the Liberals, and in a very staunchly anti-Conservative fashion:

    http://www.thestar.com/FederalElection/article/515895

    By Blogger Robert Vollman, at 11:58 AM  

  • "know your CPC backbenchers"

    I'll take Peter Goldring for the block!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 12:00 PM  

  • Robert - I'm not frightened of conservatives or Conservatives. I'm frightened of extremist conservativism--like those who think due process is just a form of 'thug hugging'. like that espoused by the Sun. Ye know. The type who watch Sun News.

    By Blogger KC, at 1:42 PM  

  • Robert:

    The only thing I'm aware of the Sun going after Conservatives for is over the CBC, and that is clearly for competitive reasons.

    The Sun was a complete booster of Ford and Hudak in a way the Star never promoted any Liberal.

    I guess I would say that the Star hates conservatives possibly as much as the Sun hates liberals. But the Star dislikes Liberals in government far more than the Sun dislikes Conservatives in government.

    Liberal journalists generally in Canada have a more anti-government bent regardless of who is in government. And that goes for the Star.

    By Blogger Ted Betts, at 9:09 PM  

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