Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Bernard Lord and the Times & Transcript: Screwing New Brunswickers Together

A little play on "Getting Results Together". Though I like "Screwing you since 1999" as a subtitle a little more.

In any event, I quote today's FRONT PAGE (thankfully below the fold) article from the Times & Transcript (emphasis added by yours truly):

Times & Transcript News - As published on page A1 on September 12, 2006

Lord to Graham: Stop insulting all of us
Times & Transcript Staff

If Shawn Graham wants to be premier perhaps he should stop insulting the people who he wants to govern, according to Conservative Leader Bernard Lord.

During a wide-ranging editorial board meeting with the Times & Transcript yesterday, Lord picked apart the Liberals' proposal on the economy and social programs. Lord recoils each time he hears his main rival insult New Brunswickers' economic spirit or education test results.

"This thing about running down the province, I'm offended as a citizen but I'm also offended as well as the premier," Lord said. "I find it offensive to all the people in New Brunswick who have worked hard in recent years to move the province forward. Attack me but don't attack everybody in New Brunswick."

The Liberals are putting forward their Charter for Change platform as their electoral agenda. The document lays out a roadmap for reaching their so-called three-Es of energy, education and economic development.

Lord often quips on the campaign trail that the fourth-E is "expensive" and he doesn't believe voters want to change in that direction.

"I understand they want to use the buzzword of change but the only change that I see that is significant in what they are proposing is they won't cut taxes and they will add more bureaucracy," Lord said. "And if that is the change the people of New Brunswick want, then sure, vote Liberal and you will get that change."

Graham's vow to restore the province's "can-do attitude" when it comes to economic development has clearly rankled Lord. When Conservatives claimed power in 1999 the unemployment rate was above 10 per cent and now it is not only below that mark but it has hit a 30-year low.

Seven years ago addressing employment problems meant developing a strategy to end prolonged joblessness. Now Lord said the economy has transformed so significantly the primary dilemma is finding qualified workers.


"Think of the shift in the last 10 years. It's an incredible shift. We have moved from chronic high unemployment to more and more people concerned they won't have the work force they need in three to four years," Lord said. "That is why I'm convinced that the unemployment rate will go down."

Tying into his plan for reduced long-term unemployment, Lord is reemphasizing trades training in school and college. As well, he wants to work more strategically with people on social assistance to retrain them earlier. Creating an atmosphere where young people have opportunities to stay home and work will end the outward migration of the province's young minds, Lord said.

"So the young people that want to stay in New Brunswick will have jobs if we continue on the right track, they will have jobs," Lord said. "Now if we instead decide as a province that we are going to invest in more bureaucracy, add more layers of bureaucracy, not cut taxes, I'm not sure that the same future is as rosy."
Riiiiiight.... This is journalism? I think if I checked out Liberal Reality Check or ... According to Shawn on the Tory website, we would find more balance.

Let me tackle these points one by one:

If Shawn Graham wants to be premier perhaps he should stop insulting the people who he wants to govern

They were apparently paraphrasing Lord. They should have either used a direct quote or, as it was a paraphrase, used more balance language. Perhaps "Bernard Lord finds it ironic that, in his opinion, Shawn Graham is insulting the same people he wants to lead".

Lord recoils each time he hears his main rival insult New Brunswickers' economic spirit or education test results.

How do they know this? Do they follow the Premier home at night and watch him as he watches the evening news? Or did they spend their editorial board meeting playing tapes of Graham's speeches? Moreover, they don't even bother to attach "according to" this time when they say "each time he hears (Graham) insults New Brunswickers".

Graham's vow to restore the province's "can-do attitude" when it comes to economic development has clearly rankled Lord. When Conservatives claimed power in 1999 the unemployment rate was above 10 per cent and now it is not only below that mark but it has hit a 30-year low.

Seven years ago addressing employment problems meant developing a strategy to end prolonged joblessness. Now Lord said the economy has transformed so significantly the primary dilemma is finding qualified workers.


Uhhh... what strategy did Bernard Lord develop seven years ago? I must have missed it. I am sure our lowering unemployment is a result of Bernard Lord's miracles and is wholly independent of record low national unemployment rates?

Tying into his plan for reduced long-term unemployment, Lord is reemphasizing trades training in school and college.

Ok, of course! I knew that Bernard Lord had something in mind when he ignored a report of his own government calling for more community college seats and the time he blasted Shawn Graham for promising more seats.


Give me a break...

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

"Screwing you since 1999" is a realistic heading for Lord's seven nightmare years. The man lies all the time and now he has a partner for quite while, T & T - Bernie's newsletter. Who reads the rag anyway? I stopped reading it months ago.

Jim Andrews said...

No doubt the the T&T is backing Lord and Co. Most of their coverage reads from the Tory web site.

To be fair, a lot of coverage in the Telegraph has been slanted red. They have covered every possible angle on the Orimulon deal. Numerous Anti Lord articles have shown up over the course of the campaign. My silly theory is that the Irvings love having fun with elections. They always have different papers approaching the campaign from varying political view points. Nice to sit on top of the masses pulling levers whenever you want. All hail the Irvings.

Oh yeah - Let's not forget Robert Jone's two part epic mini series on Insurance. The longest special interest piece in the history on CBC NB. That was not exactly flattering for the Lord Gov't.

The point I am trying to make is that there are media bias in every campaign. Some papers will support the Tories other the liberals. Ditto with radio and TV.

That is why I love the Blog world. It is the great equalizer and has proven to have a big impact on mainstream news. In the last Federal election bloggers broke several important stories that were later picked up by the mainstream media. In this provincial election the number of diverse and well informed blogs has been fantastic. The news and discussion on points of interest to all NBers has helped me to believe that people actual care about the political process (sometimes I wonder). More and more people are looking to this medium as a another source of news and or discussion on topics of interest. I see this medium growing a lot and look forward to it! Keep up the good work.

Note to mainstream news outlets - Your relevance in the blog world is diminishing. Stop being a mouthpiece for political party press relealese and start reporting the news. Over and out.

Anonymous said...

I'm a little more pessimistic on that score. Few of the blogs I've seen really cover the election. I have no idea what any of the candidates are doing for example.

Most of the blogs have dealt with predictions and complaints about mainstream media. I haven't seen any issue on the blogs that I haven't seen in the papers. There has been no investigative work done at all that I've seen.

For the unemployment rate, just check out David Campbell's blog for those stats. The only reason the unemployment rate is going down is that workers are leaving the province in droves. That's hardly a plus, but even that basic fact is rarely mentioned.

Not to belittle the bloggers, its time consuming work to be sure.

nbpolitico said...

anon at 8:21...

I did do a little bit of research for my post on unemployment and I have done a tremendous amount of research on the predictions to which you refer.

However, at the end of the day, I and other bloggers are not the media. I do not think it is my role to take over investigative journalism. Though a blogger could do research until he or she was blue in the face, unlike traditional journalists, we do not have access to the politicians and academics to get comments and feedback on our analyses before publishing.

That, in my view, would be a disservice.

During the federal election I remember an instance of a blogger causing a massive outrage based on a complete misinterpretation of information.