August 18th 2008
Left of what? Left of Centre?
by Betty Krawczyk
ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s how Vision, a Municipal Political Party of Vancouver is being described, by themselves, and by the media, as left of centre. My question is: how can any political party be described as left of centre when it is seventy per cent funded by developers and corporations?Ã‚Â But this question is never raised by our only two daily print newspapers, The Vancouver Sun and the Province.Ã‚Â Both newspapers are owned by the Asper family of Winnipeg.
Okay, if only one family who lives in Winnipeg owns the only two daily print newspapers in Vancouver, (the family owns CanWest, the largest media conglomerate in Canada) what are the politics of this family, that is, the way they slant the news ?Ã‚Â Ã‚Â Decidedly right wing.Ã‚Â That is, the usual right wing messages advocating the privatizing of everything public, including health care.Ã‚Â All in a reasonable tone, of course.Ã‚Â And the Aspers have already elected Gregor Robertson of Vision as the next mayor of Vancouver.Ã‚Â How have they done this?Ã‚Â By getting Gregor Robinson out there, at every opportunity, front and centre. in their newspapers.Ã‚Â And never even mentioning the fact that I, too, am running for mayor of Vancouver.
The Aspers obviously consider the fact that a little old lady environmental activist running for mayor as completely unworthy of mention.Ã‚Â Or, the other possibility is that I present some kind of a threat.Ã‚Â Ã‚Â Because hereÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s an odd thing.Ã‚Â In my role as an environmental activist, both papers have covered my activities.Ã‚Â Ã‚Â But as soon as IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m out of prison and announce that IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m running for mayor of Vancouver there is absolute silence.Ã‚Â The Vancouver Sun and the Province have never heard of me.Ã‚Â And furthermore, they have no intention of hearing my name or seeing my face.Ã‚Â WouldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t you agree that this is odd?Ã‚Â WouldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t you think that the only two local daily print newspapers would at lest mention that I, too, am running for mayor of Vancouver?Ã‚Â Especially since there is only one other declared candidate for mayor (besides myself), Peter Ladner of NPA?Ã‚Â And they do report on Mr. Ladner?Ã‚Â I would even feel that the Aspers were fulfilling some kind of civic responsibility to their readers if,Ã‚Â when discussing the mayoral race in an article, theyÃ‚Â just tossed a throw away line at the bottom by adding : and oh yes, andÃ‚Â Betty Krawczyk is also running for mayor.Ã‚Â But not even this footnote.
The fact that there is not even a footnote makes me suspicious.Ã‚Â Could the Aspers really be afraid of me?Ã‚Â Of what I represent?Ã‚Â Which is public resistance to their corporate agenda and value systems?Ã‚Â If so, what right have they to pick the next mayor of Vancouver, one whom they consider to be more amenable to their ring wing agendas?Ã‚Â Ã‚Â To do this by endorsing a nice man with a soft image and calling his seventy per cent corporate and developer funded party left of centre?Ã‚Â And the Aspers donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t even live in British Columbia.Ã‚Â Oh, money is a powerful thing!
If one bluntly questioned the Aspers about this they would probably reply that they have a right to say what they please and ignore what they please as they own the newspapers.Ã‚Â But I say they have a responsibility to the public as owners of the only two local print dailies in Vancouver to report the news, what is actually happening, not ignore what displeases them.Ã‚Â I say, just print the news, you Asper family of the Vancouver Sun and the Province.Ã‚Â And part of the news concerning the mayoral candidate race in Vancouver is that Betty Krawczyk is also a candidate and she is running under the auspices of The Work Less Party.Ã‚Â You donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t like that?Ã‚Â YouÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re afraid of it?Ã‚Â Better to ignore it?Ã‚Â Beneath your notice?
Ah, but you have a public obligation, you Aspers. You have an obligation to print names of declared candidates and legal municipal parties who have declared.Ã‚Â In fact, I think there may even be some legal obligation here to do so.Ã‚Â Ã‚Â Just mentioning this as a foot note.
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