Thursday, 2 February 2012

StunTV *fakes the Oath*.

Last summer CBC producers started planning with communications staff at Citizenship and Immigration Canada an event that would be broadcast during the month of October.
The CBC broadcast an hour-long, full-fledged citizenship ceremony for 75 new Canadians that featured a studio audience, a bagpiper, a retired Mountie in his red serge and local dignitaries. That event, which was broadcast live a day after the Sun’s reaffirmation ceremony, had been planned with the department since the summer.
From here.

Quebecor's StunTV however, took a different tack with CONtempt Party hacks in Kenney's office.
Documents released to The Canadian Press under access-to-information legislation show that just a few weeks before Canada's Citizenship Week last October, Mr. Kenney's staff directed departmental officials to add a last-minute citizenship ceremony at the network to their list of scheduled events.

Bureaucrats scrambled to work out the logistics, suggesting to the minister's office that Sun News could cover one of the 13 scheduled ceremonies in Ontario — four of them in Toronto, including one at the Air Canada Centre.

One senior bureaucrat at the registrar of Canadian citizenship expressed concern to Mr. Kenney's office that Sun News seemed to want to feature “only” the oath, which might short-change new Canadians from the full ceremony experience. [...]

When a bureaucrat sent Sun News a list of possible citizenship ceremonies to cover in Ontario, a network employee suggested another scenario.

“Let's do it. We can fake the Oath,” reads an email from [
name blacked out of the document] at email address [...]
So instead of sending out a camera crew and *real* journalists to cover an actual citizenship ceremony, StunTV insisted on staging a ridiculous, trumped-up cheap facsimile in their studio.

The kicker though, is this:
[Minister] Kenney has emphasized the solemnity of the act of citizenship, recently moving to force Muslim women who wear burkas or niqabs to reveal their faces.
“Finally we are ensuring that the citizenship oath itself is properly respected by all of those who take it so that they in taking a solemn commitment, being a witness publicly to the rest of their fellow citizens, demonstrate who they are and their commitment to Canada,” Mr. Kenney said last December.

One staff member from Mr. Kenney's office who appeared in the email chain about the event requested their name be blacked out before release under the Access to Information Act.
Grand merci to @a_picazo who tweeted this and this.

UPDATE: Quebec columnist Patrick Lagacé is no longer gobsmacked by StunTV fakery and calls it what it is: Con propaganda. As he points out, if StunTV only acknowledged that what it broadcasts is *infotainment* as their boss PK Péladeau freely admits, and not "Hard news, straight talk" as it's claimed.

He also directs a poke at Levant's brand of faux-journalism, which confuses staged *reality* with ethics.


fern hill said...

The story made it on Fox News South. On Twitter, Emmett MacFarlane said:'I believe they call that "synergy".' :D

deBeauxOs said...

It would have been more newsworthy had they mentioned that the reason bureaucrats couldn't recruit immigrants to show up at StunTV studio for "reaffirmation" event was that all were working and couldn't take time off.

k'in said...

What's with these ReformaCons penchant for impersonation? Remember the real versus fake Rahim Jaffer incident from a few years back? Do they secretly yearn to be Andre Phillippe Gagnon or Rich Little?

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