By Justin Mueller Sasson
Who doesn’t know what Fox News is? If you don’t, it wouldn’t surprise me that in the next couple of months you would be answering otherwise. Well for those who already know what Fox News is and does this article may seem more pertinent to you. Our Minority Government conservative leader Mr. Harper is strongly trying to insert a “Fox News North” into our cable package; therefore, making the channel visible to practically everyone in Canada.
Well why is this an issue? Because Stephen Harper will poison the true notion of democratic politics, but even worse this channel will favor the electoral outcome to the conservatives. This channel will brainwash and make people fearful of whatever Harper and his Tories want us to believe; hence, his policies and actions will focus on resolving issues which are either over-exemplified, biased, or simply untrue, all that via “Fox News North.” Is this the Canada we want? Do we want the conservative government to remain in power for long lapses of time—like Bushes reign in the United-States? Regardless of Harper’s idea, it’s his method of getting it done which is even more worrisome.
Here are a few important facts which will help you better understand the complexity of the situation: 1- Last year, as revealed by the Canadian Press, Prime Minister Stephen Harper lunched in New-York with Roger Ailes who is actually the president of Fox News, and Rupert Murdoch, the man who owns it. Kory Teneycke, Mr. Harper’s former spokesman, was also present at the unannounced event. 2- Later, Mr Teneycke—Harper’s former adviser—became the point man for Quebecor’s media giant Pierre Karl Péladeau in his effort to create a right-wing television network modelled very similarly to the United-States’ Fox News.
It is said to be, and the evidence can’t deny, that the new network is a high priority for Stephen Harper, for whom controlling the message has always been of great importance. 3- Harper’s attempt to create his dream network as been sidetracked by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), but more particularly one man, Konrad von Finckenstein who is currently CRTC’s chair. 4- The CRTC is an independent public authority in charge of regulating and supervising Canadian broadcasting and telecommunications.
Mr. Finckenstein rejected Harper’s plan which he deems contrary to CRTC policies and is now facing the harsh reality of loosing his position. 5- Replacing the CRTC’s chair and vice-chair would pretty well seal the deal for Mr. Harper and Mr. Péladeau. Mr. Teneycke has said all along that the new station would be up and running by the start of 2011 with a Category 1 license, meaning cable companies would be required to offer it as part of a package.
Of course Fox news & Co. and can set up a channel, but as long as it’s done in a legal manner. But, it should not happen as it’s happening now. The government is direct meddling into affairs which should be arms length and not “fists” length—do what they say or I fire you. It is a part of Harper’s I make the rules around here—threatening the loss of peoples’ positions if they do not comply or abide according to Harper’s wishes. What kind of a democracy is this?
Mr. Harper’s attempt to push American-style hate media and propaganda onto our airwaves scares me to the core. I don’t think anybody would like to see Canada resemble the Bush-lead U.S.A. One reason Bush got re-elected for a second term can strongly be related to the fact Fox News promotes so much hate and paranoia to the American people that they viewed Bush as a savior who can
make things right. Harper’s plan to create a “Fox News North” to mimic all the kind of hate-filled propaganda which has poisoned U.S politics will simply do the same to us. It will bitter the society and make them less liberal and more fearsome of domestic and foreign threats to homeland security. As a result, Harper’s policies and ideas will relate more to the peoples’ state-of-mind.
Canada has been under a liberal stronghold for many years; however, Harper is trying to exponentially eradicate the “liberal way of life” and transform Canada into a fearful and hateful nation, only wanting to fight back and incarcerate.
Personally, I do not see Canada go in that direction, but with what I am hearing from Parliament Hill, we may not be very far from becoming one of those nations if Harper gets his way.
Finally, Observers of Mr. Harper have long noted that he doesn’t take kindly to commissions or agencies or anyone else who tends to get in his way or wishes. Hence, the big question naturally arises: Do the CRTC board members actually think they can get in the way of Mr. Harper’s wishes on Fox News North? And, do they really believe they have some type of independent power? Finally, what is/are Harper’s next move(s) to achieve his goals?