The conservatives were way ahead of the liberals in the polls in Canada but lost when the elections took place. Here’s how the Washington Post put it: “In the final hours before a historic vote anticipated as a shift toward conservatism, Canadians pondered the shape of their country, and many decided abruptly, as they cast their votes, to stick with their social agenda, political analysts said.” We have a different explanation: liberal media bias.
Canadians have a website, www.cbcwatch.ca [Editor’s note: As of 2010, this web site is no longer operational], devoted to exposing the liberal bias of the government-financed Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, the CBC, which has major influence throughout Canada. CBC Watch is described as “an independent forum dedicated to exposing the Canadian Broadcast Corporation’s violation of the Broadcasting Act. Specifically, the Act’s requirement that the CBC ‘provide a reasonable opportunity for the public to be exposed to the expression of differing views on matters of public concern.'”
The election pitted conservative Stephen Harper against liberal Paul Martin. The attack on the “hidden agenda” of the conservatives was designed to divert attention from the corruption, wild spending, and mismanagement of the ruling liberals. In order to get that point across, the CBC featured warnings about a Stephen Harper government from two representatives of the loony left in the United States, Michael Moore and Ralph Nader.
The Post article made an indirect reference to the left-wing media bias in Canada when it quoted Tim Powers of Canada’s Conservative Party as saying, “Interesting that Michael Moore and his ‘Fahrenheit 9/11’ has received such broad positive coverage in this country. There is a re-evaluating of the current president [Bush] that hasn’t helped us here. The Liberals brought forward a campaign, as did the NDP [the New Democratic Party], linking the Conservatives to the Republican Party.” The NDP is another liberal party in Canada.
What was the evidence of the “hidden agenda” of the conservatives? Here’s what the Post said: “Days before the vote, a documentary filmmaker released an interview with Randy White, a Conservative member of Parliament. White said the Conservatives would take steps to limit the rights of same-sex couples. He also said the judicial system, which has been active in reshaping social policy, needed to be reined in.” These moderate positions were transformed by the liberals in Canada, with the help of the media, into a sinister conservative “hidden agenda.”
One contributor to CBC Watch tells us that the CBC carried one-sided reports on such issues as homosexual marriage and abortion. He said the CBC “manipulated the recent election to make any opposing stance on same sex marriage appear as ‘extreme’ as opposition to abortion.” We would be foolish not to recognize the fact that if it worked in Canada, it may work in the United States. We should anticipate attacks on Bush and the Republican Party for having a “hidden agenda” to implement a radical right-wing social agenda. That would divert attention from the liberalism of the Democratic ticket of Kerry-Edwards.