NDP MP Gets It Right On Harper VS the Press
Mr. Charlie Angus (Timmins—James Bay, NDP): Mr. Speaker, while the PMO has declared war on the Ottawa media, some people are saying it is a spat and others are saying it is just the intransigence of a man who cannot dare to be second guessed.
I would suggest that the Prime Minister is following through on a carefully planned out strategy, because this is about deciding who gets to ask the questions of Canada's most powerful man. It is about taking the press's power here and putting it under the thumb of the PMO's spinmeisters.
We only have to look south of the border to see the absolute failure if the media acquiesced on such rights. When hard questions needed to be asked about the Bush agenda in Iraq, the U.S. media went along for the ride. Its failure to stand up to the Republican game plan made it complicit in a lie that was used to trigger an illegal war that has led to wholesale human rights abuses.
It is not good enough to simply get the clip or the photo op. To maintain a functioning democracy, we need to ensure that the press hold politicians to account, and politicians, for their part, have to be willing to stand up to the questioning without giving intimidation or contempt for the nation's media.
Bravo Mr. Angus!!!