CBC: Now we’re getting somewhere

OTTAWA — Canada’s national broadcaster found itself under fire from several fronts Tuesday, as it was forced to defend its economic value and societal relevance while the country’s access-to-information watchdog suggested the broadcaster may be automatically denying information requests.

At a parliamentary committee, CBC president and CEO Hubert Lacroix faced attacks from some MPs who slammed the broadcaster, questioning its objectivity, its appeal to the country’s diverse population and its worthiness of taxpayers’ dollars. (Source)

That’s what I’m talkin’ about. Let’s get some accountability.

Meanwhile, at another hearing, Information Commissioner Suzanne Legault said the CBC should be required to show the harm in making documents public rather than giving the corporation a blanket exemption from releasing records that concern journalism, programming or creative activities.

I really like the sound of that. Given the influence that the Information Commissioner wields, I doubt the CBC will escape her wrath.

Lacroix said the Crown corporation runs almost solely on Canadian content and that each dollar invested in the organization creates $3.70 in value to the country’s economy.

Baloney. Each dollar could generate even more than $3.70 if it was used for more productive issues.

While the Tories promised that the CBC would be handed “maintain or increase” financial support, the broadcaster is now bracing for severe budget cuts of at least $100-million — or about 10% — of its annual allotment of about $1.1-billion.

$100 million less in the coffers of the CBC really makes my day.

 [Tory MP John Williamson] pointed to CBC’s evening news show, The National, as an example. While Global and CTV have recorded audiences of more than one million people, CBC’s viewership has decreased to only half a million, Williamson said.

“Your approach to news tends to be one-sided and viewers are tuning out because they’re looking for a good debate and they’re not getting it. CBC is, in fact, becoming a caricature of itself. There was a time I think it was better able to hold governments accountable by providing both sides of the debate,” he said.

Now we’re getting to the heart of the matter. I honestly didn’t know that Canadians were so tuned out of the CBC. I thought The National was the big news event of the evening. I guess not. Just one more reason why we don’t need the CBC. I’m sure Don Cherry can find a home on a private network, should anybody think he deserves a job.

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