Trudeau hasn't even been sworn in and already the scandals are piling up. One of the National Post's resident human rights activists, Kelly McParland, notes that so far he hasn't cancelled a pending arms deal with Saudi Arabia. Mind you that's never bothered McParland before. Indeed, in his own personal endorsement of the Conservative Party, he inexplicably forgot to mention that the Harper government brokered the deal. But I'm sure he was very busy and simply forgot. In no way should readers come away with the impression that McParland only decided to write about this issue after Trudeau formed the government.
Meanwhile, over at the Globe & Mail, the editorial board is deeply concerned that Justin the Unready might follow through on his campaign promise to cancel our air mission in Iraq and Syria. (Matt Gurney doesn't like it either.) And Jack Mintz's advice is that Trudeau will be all right as long as he sticks to Harper's economic and trade policies.
A cynic might observe a yawning disconnect between the media's conservatism and not just the will of the people but the election platform of the new government. But no matter. The message from the media is: real change, as long as there's no change. Over at CBC, that well-known outpost of renegade leftism, Neil Macdonald actually penned an ode to Sarah Palin in the form of a pre-emptive condemnation of any "hopey-changey stuff." (CBC had the good sense to remove the Palinism but you can still see a reference to it on their Facebook page.) Wait, did I say CBC was far left? I actually meant they are apparently somewhere well to the right of the Conservative Party.
For what it's worth, and recognizing that he has very little choice in the matter, I hope Trudeau doesn't spend too much time trying to impress the corporate media, because there really is no point. I say that because of the recent endorsement scandals at the National Post, where editor Andrew Coyne was prohibited from writing a column endorsing anyone but the Conservatives, and at the Globe & Mail, which explicitly said that they were endorsing the Conservative Party even though in their judgement the party was not fit to govern under its present leadership.
Now, I realize that the op-ed page is a sort of paper shield behind which pundits claim that journalistic objectivity no longer applies. However, I do wonder sometimes whether the editors of the major papers feel any qualms at all about how cheaply they have surrendered their integrity and any pretence of nonpartisanship in favour of casting judgements that were obviously set in stone regardless of how the campaign went and how fit or unfit any particular party might be to form a government.
The Conservative Party spent years fundraising on the principle that the "media party" was against them. Now we have a situation where said party really is against the government. I don't mind too much when the media critiques the government -- that's it's job. But I will have a hard time forgetting, every time the Globe & Mail editorial board criticizes the Trudeau government, that just a few short days ago this supposed outpost of liberty was calling for the election of a party proposing snitch lines to rat on our neighbours, and special clothing regulations to protect us from the horror of our fellow citizens wearing religious garb we dislike. Not to mention what is now a very lengthy laundry list of things that said editorial board itself, over the past four years, labelled assaults on civil rights, democracy, science, and the rule of law.
That was the Globe editors' choice, and I intend to do my very small part to make sure they wear it. Next election perhaps they should just print an editorial that says "we are endorsing the Conservative Party because we always do and we don't care what anybody's platform says." That would be more honest and it would save paper.
I'm Sixth Estate, and we'll talk again tomorrow.