Media-saturation and leadership

November 20, 2016

*To non-Canadian readers I apologize for a column which must look like inside baseball. Rather than load the piece up with parentheses and marginal notes, I’ll leave it to Google to provide explanations on demand.  After considerable thought I hope that I have found a context within which to respond to the recent U.S. election.

It’s a scifi world in politics now, where there is literally no such thing as bad press. The only losing strategy any more seems to be the pursuit of a quiet, principled and dignified campaign. Canada’s Dr. Kellie Leitch has caught onto this meme and decided to get herself some Trump in an effort to avoid irrelevance.

What galls me is the commodification of this package of negative attitudes as a prefabricated political strategy.

The question for Canadians is how can we sanction the McVetys, the Fords and the Leitches without simply inflaming the virus with the heat of publicity, which is all they seek?

The only immediate suggestion would be to lapse into autocracy — what Trudeau bluntly used to prevent the (Sam Oosterhoff-style) packing of nomination meetings in 2015 — but to do that is to allow the virus attacking democracy to advance as well.

So the old debate question emerges again: how can a democracy protect itself against attacks upon truth as the the informed news editor is supplanted by the writer of fake news?



One Response to “Media-saturation and leadership”

  1. Another way is for all Canadians to vigorously speak out against the use of these tactics and punish politicians at the polls who use them.

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