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Friday, September 12, 2008 

TVO Confirms That 'May' Quote / Audio Is Intact

Jill Javet, TVO's director of corporate relations, made this statement on the matter this morning:

"TVO confirms that the audio of the clip in question is intact. As such, TVO is not and will not be pursuing legal action of any kind on this matter."

"John Bennett of the Greens insisted that Taylor doctored the audio tape (Taylor denied this) and informed at least one blogger that both the Greens and TVO were considering legal action if the video remained posted on his site."

So the audio is "intact" but out of context.
There's a big lesson for the Greens from all this fuss: Threats can really hurt a party's image. A polite, non-threatening e-mail would have been much better.
Another lesson for the Greens: John Bennett is an ass. Might wanna find another communications honcho.

It's remarkable that the Greens did not go through a solicitor to utter their legal threats.

That's dumb. Making legal threats is not a game for amateurs.

As an example, I suspect that pretending to speak for TVO could get Bennett into trouble.

I think this warrants a re-post of the youtube clip.

And now for Buckdog's well-deserved 15 minutes of fame.

Which I gladly would have done without!

I think you're missing a crucial point in the TVO article you posted. One that should make you consider how you're reporting the information. If you're reporting it with a spin or with full honesty.

The TVO article mentions that they don't believe she thought "Canadians are stupid" given the CONTEXT of the conversation.

One thing that is being lost in the blogosphere's sensationalism toward this story is the context. What you have got was 15 minutes of fame for creating something out of nothing... of course, credits also go to Taylor.

Now we will see if Bennett was in fact reacting alone on this or if he consulted May. I get the impression that he simply reacted without consulting May given his poorly structured sentences and typos of his emails.

But let's be responsible "citizen" journalists. Context was lost in this whole mess all to create controversy. Fox News is excellent at doing that.

Yes leftdog, the same article makes it clear she said "they" and not "I" as you and Stephen Taylor keep trying to sell.

Good luck with that.

Whatever ....

"To some listeners, May's comment is made a bit more ambiguous by another comment she makes right afterward: "... and I fundamentally agree with that assessment...".

Thanks for applying your own context there .... same thing you are accusing me of ....

FWIW, despite our heated disagreement about whether May should be in the debate or not, I am behind YOU 100% ins this frivolous lawsuit nonsense.

I am definitely not a Green party person. I anted her in the debate because I believe in fairness and freedom of information - nothing should be suppressed by the "backroom boys".

And you should not be threatened for the exact same reason.

Dissent is healthy and political dissent is a cornerstone of freedom.

We can disagree, but that doesn't mean I don't like or support you. Try taking the partisan blinders off for a few minutes...

Leftdog wrote a post that can arguably been seen as taken out of context. But the Greens screwed this one up, no doubt it, and they're the only ones to blame for trying to suppress a citizen journalist's posting.

Canadians might be stupid, but I know most of them a lot smarter than those Greens here, defending the oppressive measures taken by their leaders.

There's only one thing left to do for ALL greens; apologize to Buckdog.

TVOntario is a wonderful station and the program "The Agenda" with Steve Paikin is a must-see.

Paikin, I understand, will be moderating the English leaders' debate.

Notice it's Paikin--not Coren.

Who cares if May said they? She clearly said they and also said "and I fundamentally agree with that assessment" so she stated she thinks Canadian political leaders think Canadians are stupid and she agrees with that assessment. That is what is recorded.

This whole thing is Elizabeth May's own fault for speaking too fast and not using proper diction so as to make sure her message is not misconstrued: she says : "they think Canadians are stupid", not "I think". Listen to the clip, it's ridiculously obvious. Why would a political leader say "I think Canadians are stupid" ? Even if taken out of context this statement is political suicide and if that is indeed what she said, she is deserving of being wiped from the political map.

And TVO has a nice clip of May uttering "I think Canadians are stupid".

I posted their clip of May saying it on my blog because you don't need to be a lip reader, she clearly says, "I think Canadians are stupid"

I am happy for you, dog. TVO coming out and confirming the authenticity of the audio will be instrumental in making May's Green house fall down like the house of cards it is.

The threats you received were baseless and without merit. It was, in fact, extremely dirty business on the part of the Greens.

It only confirms my decision with respect to this election: I'd be absolutely fine with PM Harper or PM Layton, but Dion and May are absolutely out of the question.

Uhm Maw? She clearly says "they" not "I"...even the TVO announcement that leftdog links to says that.

Mike really needs to have a look at this page. She CLEARLY says I think Canadians are stupid. The threat made to sue makes John Bennett not only an oppressive Green party hack, but also turns him into a suspected liar.

There's only one really stupid Canadian here, and that's John Bennett; I'm sure we all learned that much in the last few days.

Some Canadians ARE stupid. How many?
Could be more than 50%. Would be interesting to poll Canadians to see if a majority agreed with the statement that 'a majority of Canadians are stupid'. If a majority of us do, then May would find herself in tune with the majority. It would also be interesting if the breakdown of the numbers would show that the regions where the stupidity opinion polled highest were the regions where the greens support was highest. Stupid no? The whole controversy is stupid, eh. Ask Danny Williams who would probably agree that a plurality of Canadians are stupid for planning to vote conservative.

"She CLEARLY says I think Canadians are stupid."

not according to this slowed audio clip. she said "they".

"she says 'and I fundamentally agree with that assessment' meaning she agrees that Canadians are stupid."

or she agrees that there is little political will for a carbon tax, as she had elaborated.


Anyone who has read the Tyee article on this knows that John Bennett has been lying though his teeth about this.

John Bennett:"They took what she said, cut it up, then put it back together." [...]

Green spokesman Bennett insisted the tape was spliced, and threatened legal action.

Yeah, that's what happened, wasn't it? All fakery but no mention of any I/they controversy at that point.

Another day another lie.

John Bennett today: "In the TVO clip, Elizabeth May clearly says they think Canadians are stupid"

I see, suddenly we all "clearly" hear that she said "they" instead of I?

Bullshit. I think John Bennett is nothing more than a serial liar. And that suits the Green party all fine, even when he's not even very good at it. Loser.

"I see, suddenly we all 'clearly' hear that she said 'they' instead of I?"

i don't know about "suddenly" and "we", but i didn't wiegh in until after i'd heard noni's clip, wherein may clearly says "they".


eesh! "weigh in...."


I've heard the same audio, and I'm still convinced she says "I", BUT

many are convinced she says "they", and I do admit it is hard to hear.

Whatever the truth is, it would have been more expedient for the Green Party if spokesperson John Bennett would have argued that "what" was said was incorrect, instead of insisting that the tape must have been doctored.

Hey Buckdog, I just became aware of your blog through this "stupid" controversy and I have to say I like your style! You're bookmarked in my blogs folder now and you'll be a regular stop.

Thanks for not backing down in the face of intimidation and general assholery.


Thanks Lyle ... my pleasure! (My daily number of readers has been up a bit lately!) ;)

"BUT many are convinced she says 'they'"

perhaps it's because those many realize that for may to blurt out such a non sequitir really makes no sense.

"and I do admit it is hard to hear."

yet earlier, you insisted "she CLEARLY says I think...." just sayin'.


"or she agrees that there is little political will for a carbon tax, as she had elaborated."

She states she agrees with that assessment which the only thing she was talking about prior was if politicians thought Canadians were stupid. I'm sorry but thats what is said, she does not say I fully agree with the assessment that there is a lack of political will for a carbon tax. No matter what, with communication like that I wonder if May messes up in the debate would the Green Party threaten to sue any reporter who dares mention it?

"She states she agrees with that assessment which the only thing she was talking about prior was if politicians thought Canadians were stupid."

no, prior to "stupid", she said pols were afraid to say "tax", as the question she was answering was "why is there little political will for carbon tax?" she agrees that there is little political will, and the reason she gives is fear of the word "tax"; fear because they underestimate canadians' ability to grasp notions....

....and to some extent, i'm inclined to agree with that assessment.



"she does not say I fully agree with the assessment that there is a lack of political will for a carbon tax."

no, not directly. can't always rely on linearity in a discussion, especially from the impassioned. gotta interpolate sometimes.

"i think canadians are stupid" could only be a tourrettesian non sequitur. while "they think, and i agree" is a possible explanation, it hardly serves her position to say so, as the logical conclussion to "there's no will because they're afraid to say tax because they think canadians are too stupid to get it" would have to be (and here's where the interpolation enters) that may, having the political will, as prefaced by the querier, must also have the faith in canadians that "they" lack. through further interpolation, "an assessment i agree with" would be may's after-the-fact amendment to her "fear" comment; again, she must agree to the premise if she is to attempt to explain "why".

the key factor in my interpoolations is may's desire to sell carbon tax to canadians; if the lack of will is ultimately the result of a fear that the word "tax" won't wash with "stupid" canadians, then may's own will in the matter must mean that she believes a carbon tax can be sold to canadians, owing to her faith in their not-so-stupidness.

it's the only logical(!) explanation....


geez, i'm dumb. said "interpolate" where i meant "extrapolate"....


it's the only logical(!) explanation....

I agree, that IS the most logical explanation, and she might have well meant to have said that, but I still have a hard time hearing when listening to the audio.

Here's some general advice for May and HER debate: SLOW DOWN! Slow down and pick your arguments carefully.

We don't need to know all and everything that's going around in that little brain of hers, we just want to hear if she has properly analyzed and has solid solutions for the main problems Canadians currently face.

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