Tuesday, April 07, 2009

CBC Television: Where they save the bathwater and throw out the baby

I just discovered that CBC television is going to cancel CBC News: Sunday. Damnit! It’s the best public affairs show on the network. Evan Soloman and Carole MacNeil are superb interviewers and broadcasters. They bring freshness and excitement to the big questions that face the country and the world. I look forward to Sunday mornings to watch their documentaries and interviews that re-cast issues, broaden them and make you think.

What am I going to do now on Sunday mornings, watch John King and his deadly State of the Union with its magic interactive bored?

I suppose I can wait until Thursday nights to watch the At Issue Panel. Where else can you see Hoovernomics so cogently presented to a 21st century audience?


My Cat Knows Better said...

The link below might be of interest.

I agree with your assessment of the Sunday morning show. It is the only piece of intelligent programming on an the list of dismal Sunday morning offerings.


CQ said...

I felt the same, except about CTV's recently cancelled Good Morning Canada for Saturday mornings.
Good News only without all the usual bloodshed stuff.

Anonymous said...

It's a great time for neocons. GM is being forced into bankruptcy protection -- meaning hard-won workers' benefits will be slashed and the auto unions weakened while financial institutions get trillion dollar no-questions-asked bailouts. Did I forget to mention the 5th horseman of the Apocalypse, the IMF, dashing from one afflicted country to another ripping off their public property in return for bailout money? And the neocons get to watch the CBC slide into redundancy.
Who said hard times breed radical solutions?

janfromthebruce said...

And MSM in Canada con't presenting only two political choices "to save/not save us" as Liberal or Conservative, where there is no difference - ultimately - in their economic political status - neoliberalism vs. neoliberalism.
And liberals for all their "air blowing" are on side.

Anonymous said...

Evan Soloman and Carole MacNeil were the epitome of controlled media bland.
Actually the entire CBC has proven to be good little water carriers for the government agenda, (regardless of which side of the neoliberal coin is in power).
Invest in a good computer with a good sized screen and powerful video card.
Donate your T.V. to charity.
All mainstream T.V. media is controlled propaganda whoring.

Good riddance to "Carol and Evan" a couple of conformist blowhards who will not be missed.

Anonymous said...

I recommend listening to The Sunday Edition on CBC Radio 1. Michael Enright is the best host on CBC right now.

Luke42 said...

I am in my mid 60s and for most of my life it was inconceivable to watch the news (or for that matter - a long time ago - just about any other program - except on CBC.

Alas, this is a long time ago because of the way the CBC went "down the drain".

In response to the budget cuts started by the Mulroney government and stepped up by Paul Martin as Finance Minister the CBC seemed to do anything but cut salaries or positions at the top.

Other than the news, sports and some comedy they almost have had nothing but reruns showing us in the July heat Rick Mercer doing a Christmas special. (If this is an exaggeration it is only slightly so.)

Once upon a time the CBC had a somewhat "progressive" bias in their political analysis. Now CTV seems to be far to the left of the CBC. Take the Middle East coverage of the CBC for instance: Have you ever seen a member of Peace Now, Gush Shalom or B'tselem, not to mention Palestinians interviewed in a fair manner (if at all) on CBC "News" (CBC Propaganda would be more appropriate imo)?

I haven't.

Or take the war on Iraq and its dreadful consequences. Did you ever hear them mention the Lancet (statistical) study concerning the number of dead?

I haven't.

They consistently quoted Iraq Body Count as if it had any accuracy.

Iraq Body Count itself makes it quite clear that their method leads to an understatement of casualties because there have to be two independent media reports for a body to be counted. A moron would know that in the chaos and mayhem of sectarian warfare and terrorism many dead are not reported at all. (Not to mention the disappeared.)

The last time I phoned the CBC in Vancouver I had a long argument with a (I think) producer and she insisted that in the name of accuracy (PLEASE!!!) the CBC needs two independent sources. This was over a year ago, perhaps two, and made me finally give up watching CBC barring the odd exception and hockey.

It's truly sad especially considering why the CBC was created to begin with. It was to counter the overwhelming impact of our "friends" to the south. (If you don't like the quotes around friends, think softwood lumber and the ongoing rip-off.)

Now the right wingers - i.e. both major parties - have won.

The CBC will continue to exist as some skeleton still consuming vast amounts of public money for next to no value at all except those "star employees" who get rock star salaries not to mention the huge number of presidents and vice-presidents and what have you.

When I still watched CBC I liked Solomon's and McNeill's show even if I didn't always agree with them. They are competent professionals who got the axe for financial reasons (I suppose). Neil MacDonald - a superb reporter - was transferred out of the Middle East apparently because he was too honest imo. (His reporting of the Oka Crisis was outstanding!)

I trust that most top managers from the President down are still mostly therre collecting huge salaries for not delivering any value.

Sorry about the long rant but this has been eating me up inside for years.

valereej said...

I, too, shall miss Carol and Evan on the Sunday News. But, I certainly will not be substituting The State of the Union with John King. There are much better programs on Sunday.

Fareed Zacharia has an excellent show in which he discusses topical questions with a panel of experts, or interviews someone prominent in the public eye. He doesn't get the usual mindless pundits that are so ubiquitous on CNN. He actually gets rational thinkers from academia as well as scientists and other experts Fareed's interviews are peppered with rational and challenging questions for his guest. He's on twice at 1pm and 5pm. Definitely worth a viewing.

BBC All Day News on Sunday often has debates. The Doha Debate pops up once a month. Similarly the World Debate. And the newest Debate is also a once a month affair. The subject of debate can be found on the BBC news site.