Monday, September 8, 2008

Voters believe in democracy; the networks don't

The self-styled "Broadcasting Consortium" has decided that the Green Party can't participate in the leaders' debates on Oct. 1 and 2. This is completely stupid.

The Green Party should be included in the debates despite the decision of the six networks to exclude them. Elizabeth May is running nearly a full slate of candidates as are the other parties and they have held at least 5% popular support in the polls since the last election -- the minimum needed to get public financing on a quarterly basis. More importantly they have a Member of Parliament in their stable.

The excuse that the Conservatives, Bloc and the NDP have said they'll refuse to participate if the Green are in, citing the Liberal-Green entente not to run candidates in one riding each -- namely the party leaders' -- is just a cop-out. More voices means more democracy and greater voter participation. If the voters in Central Nova and Laurier Sainte Marie think they're being manipulated they'll vote accordingly. But don't you dare tell me that people in the other 306 districts don't have a right to at least hear what May has to say.

This is dictatorship of the broadcasters. And the airwaves belong to the people. If the networks don't back down, then the CRTC should cancel their licenses and give them to groups that actually respect the fact that the airwaves are ours -- not that of bureaucrats and big business.

Vote for this post at Progressive Bloggers.


penlan said...

It might be because I did heard someone in the Cons, can't remember who, say that if she was included in the debates Harper wouldn't show up. And he has stated publicly that he doesn't want her there.

So the media gang bow to Harper.

Chrystal Ocean said...

Correction to your post's title:

Voters think they have a democracy; clearly, they don't

penlan said...

OK, 3 leaders said they would not participate in the debates - Conservatives, Bloc, NDP.

There's an article at CBC about it.

BlastFurnace said...

Penlan: The fact Harper refused to dignify May's existence is not a surprise. I would have expected more class from the NDP and the Bloc. This announcement is just a gift to both the Liberal and Green Parties. My preference is, of course, for a Liberal majority but if it has to be a Lib minority I'd rather partner with the Greens than the NDP.

Chrystal: Point taken -- the title I wrote was the first thing I could come up with. :-)

Ted Betts said...


Anonymous said...

Bouchard was let in after he swiched from PC to Bloc. Why the double standard?

susansmith said...

Only two party leaders have stated they would not debate.
1. Harper stated that he would not be in the debate if May was in it; and

2. Dion stated that he would not be in the debate if Harper was not in it.

Please correct your information, as neither Latyon or the Bloc leader stated that they would not participate.

Anonymous said...

Here is the link to submit complaints to the CRTC:

Who knows if it will help, but a few hundred thousand complaints may be a start....

Anonymous said...

I was really hoping May would be in the debates.

It would serve to further divide up the left vote and allow the Conservatives to come up the middle... and perhaps win.

BlastFurnace said...

Including the Greens might actually work to the benefit of the other progressive parties. Don't forget back in 1991, the BC Liberals had to claw their way into the debate (via a court hearing) between the ruling Socreds and the NDP. The clear winner of the debate wound up being the Libs when the other two leaders (Rita Johnson and Mike Harcourt) came off like jerks. In the end, the Liberals wound up in second. The Socreds dropped to third and by the next election were off the map all together.