Killing the CBC

cbc-logo-kramerIt’s a dream come true. A perfect storm, if you’re Conservative. Killing the CBC is something I’m sure they’ve all pined for for years.

Now the ironically-named Heritage Minister James Moore is saying that the CBC is on its own, not unlike all the other media organizations in the country. Facing a shortfall of $100-200 million (according to what I heard on CBC Radio this morning) CBC is going to have to make some really difficult choices.

It’s not made any easier when the “Heritage Minister” throws out mixed signals saying that the CBC shouldn’t be competing with private broadcasters (stop chasing revenues and eyeballs). It makes it rather difficult when, to survive, they have to go after ad revenue and get high ratings on TV programs in an effort to maximize their revenue.

It’s almost, gasp, entrepreneurial. Isn’t that what the Cons are all about? No, it’s the Cons speaking out both sides of their mouth, or with forked tongue, or more likely both. If the CBC is going to stop competing for ad revenue, they need adequate government funding to do so.

The Cons can’t say that they don’t support subsidies to business because, well, they do. You can call them incentives or whatever you like, but it’s still government money. There’s nothing wrong with it if it’s fulfilling the wishes of Canadian citizens. Hell, we subsidize banks and oil companies. We probably subsidize many other companies that are likely big donators to the Cons. Maybe the CBC should make some donations to them as well?

I am pretty middle of the road when it comes to politics. My ideas span the political spectrum.I can reconcile NOT wanting gun control but wanting socialized medicine. I can find many apparent contradictions in my views. Life isn’t a Liberal or Conservative dichotomy.

I like the CBC. I listen to CBC Radio every single day. I watch CBC TV less often. I am on the CBC website every day. I get a lot of news online. I value the CBC as do a large portion of Canadians.

I don’t want to hear ads on CBC radio, as do the majority of listeners. I don’t need statistics to know that. I don’t listen to commercial radio much because I get less information than I do on CBC. So, if they chase ads to survive, they’ll be competing with private broadcasters again. Hmm.

CBC should get an adequate subsidy to continue operating. It is one of the institutions that helps to unite the country, and God knows, this country needs institutions like that. I’m sure our Prime Minister doesn’t much care, knowing how fond he is of Quebec.

No, layoffs at the CBC would make the Cons quite happy I’m sure. It would be one less news organization fully capable of holding the government to account; less resources overall means less investigative reporting. It’s precisely at this time we need a strong media organization that is capable of reporting on our government. And they can do it objectively.

Unfortunately private mainstream media organizations are in very difficult circumstances right now. You can bet that investigative reporting is the least of their worries when they’re trying to keep their heads above water. Should we subsidize them also? That’s the subject of another post, I think.

If you love the CBC, you should let your MP know that you want them to continue to receive adequate funding to continue as is and that the Cons should help them with their current budget shortfall. Write your MP, write the Minister, write the Prime Minister.

I will be voting in the next election for a party that supports the CBC.