Trudeau’s $600 MILLION Establishment Media Bailout Is Even More Disturbing Than We Feared

All Canadians should be worried about this.

The recent budget has brought more information amount the dangerous $600 million bailout of the establishment media.

On Twitter, CanadaLand founder Jesse Brown explained what it means, and the details are horrible:

“1. Details of the government’s newspaper bailout are here, and it’s all much worse than I predicted. Things are still pretty vague, but the tidbits revealed yesterday tell us a lot. Here’s my best effort at parsing it:”

“2. A government-appointed panel will determine which news orgs are “Qualified Canadian Journalism Organizations” (QCJOs) and which are not.”

“3. Beyond picking winners & losers for subsidies, this will create a caste of State-recognized news orgs deemed to be of higher public value, and a lower class that are not. I’m not aware of any other Western democracy that has ever done this.”

“4. Now let’s talk about who is eligible for bailout money and who isn’t.”

“5. A Qualified org must “employ two or more journalists”. So right out the gate, this eliminates many startups. A laid-off reporter looking to launch a sole-proprietorship operation gets no incentive to do so.”

“6. I launched Canadaland solo & did it part-time for a year before I started hiring. The bailout could have encouraged dozens more individuals to do the same, but explicitly excludes them instead.”

“7. Check this: a Qualified organization “must be…primarily engaged in the production of original WRITTEN news content.” (emphasis mine).

Podcast companies are out. Video journalism orgs are out. Data journalism startups or news app projects are out.”

“8. But what’s this? Once a legacy news org qualifies for a bailout, there’s nothing I can see preventing it from getting salary subsidies for their journalists who do audio, video or data. So podcasters CAN get the subsidy, but only if they work for Postmedia, the Globe, etc.”

“9. Similarly, news orgs “primarily focused” on things like art or sports are excluded. But that doesn’t prevent a general interest news org from subsidizing arts reporters or sports writers. A music pub like Exclaim! gets nothing but the Globe can get money for its music writer.”

“10. Oh, look: a qualified news org “must not be significantly engaged in the production of content…to promote goods or services”. Hmmm…Postmedia, the Star and the Globe all have sponsored content departments, so I guess they’re out too! Just kidding.”

“11. I laugh because our legacy news orgs will get almost all of this money. The Heritage Minister said: “Our approach will not be to bail out industry models that are no longer viable.” In fact, this package seems explicitly designed to do exactly that, and little else.”

“12. So that’s what’s in there, so far. Here’s what’s missing: ANY transparency or accountability for the salary subsidies, which is where almost all of the government bailout money will go.”

“13. Yes, news orgs that opt for charity status (“Donees”) will have to disclose what they get. But that’s a disclosure of voluntary payments from donors, not of taxpayer money.”

“14. So there’s no indication that the public will even know which news orgs get the salary subsidies, or how many millions each one gets. Based on what’s been presented, these will be SECRET subsidies for news organizations.”

“15. There’s also nothing in here to stop newspaper management from simply pocketing the bailout money. They aren’t required to hire more reporters or produce more journalism. They don’t have to raise wages…”

“16. Owners will get $13,750 per newsroom worker they employ making $55K or more. That’s millions for the big orgs, & owners/mgmt can just keep it. We are talking about Paul Godfrey, the Thompson family, the Irvings… This is a government handout to millionaires and billionaires.”

Brown then criticized the SUN. I disagree with his criticism but have posted it below for full transparency of what he Tweeted:

“17. Also nothing in there about what a news org has to do to KEEP getting money. They don’t have to stop laying reporters off. Nothing about the quality of journalism. A paper like the SUN can keep publishing racist lies about Muslim migrants and get government money to do so.”

“18. It’s increasingly clear that Canada is embarking on a bizarre media experiment, a weird kind of government interference with the free & independent press the likes of which the world has never seen. It’s not Putin or PRC-style State media. It’s something else…”

“19. …something very Canadian, all about rewarding cronies and lobbyists, locking out upstarts and maintaining the status quo.”

“20. It will require secrecy and an indifferent public. It will require those things FROM the news media (just look at how little coverage this is getting today). It has already corroded public trust in journalism, which was already at a low-point.”

He closes by asking for contributions to CanadaLand:

“21. What an interesting time to cover Canadian media! Please support Canadaland, folks. Because you don’t have to.”

A dangerous moment for Canada

Trudeau’s attempt to buy off the media with our taxpayer dollars is very dangerous. It risks totally shredding the free press, and turning the already biased establishment media into a totally controlled propaganda arm of the government.

If Trudeau’s media bailout is allowed to stay in force, just imagine what kind of stories we would never have heard of. The Fife story in the Globe & Mail that launched the SNC-Lavalin PMO Scandal never would have seen the light of day.

And that’s what Trudeau wants. He also wants websites like to be swamped by his bailed out cronies, suppressing and silencing people like me who criticize him and hold him accountable.

That’s why it’s more important than ever to stand up for independent media and push back against Trudeau’s dangerous bailout.

Spencer Fernando

Photo – Twitter


You can help fight back against the corrupt and biased political establishment by supporting Spencer Fernando’s writing. You can make a monthly contribution through Patreon or contribute through PayPal at the button below: