Friday, October 07, 2005

Canada's chattering classes outdid themselves or 'brave sanity'

One can never underestimate the audacity of Canada's chattering classes. The country's leadinig newspaper hits a new low, publishing a vicious non-sensical, conspirozoid anti-American rant. An outrage from many corners follows and here we go:
Toronto, October 5, 2005 - Journalist, author and academic Paul William Roberts is the winner of a new award honouring courage in journalism.

The PEN Canada/Paul Kidd Courage Award is named after the late Canadian journalist, who was one of Canada's first globe-trotting foreign correspondents. Kidd filed reports from more than 70 countries, braving street violence, gunfire, terrorism and arrest from political regimes infuriated by his insistence on getting and reporting the truth. Kidd died in 2002.

"We think that the awarding of the prize to Paul William Roberts is an excellent and appropriate choice," said writer Judy Creighton, the widow of Paul Kidd. "Roberts's writings accurately reflect his bravery in getting the word out."

A critique of his "absolutely lunatic essay" can be found here, and here

Today's Globe has a few letter on the subject and even one of his supporters admits that
"his position that Washington may have created the terrorist threat to "have a national demon to replace the defeated Soviet Red Peril" is over the top".
However, there's a letter from Constance Rooke, PEN Canada's president herself. It's funny and outrageous. It's funny coz I always marvel how the modern loonie left are seriously convinced that the best way to answer charges by uttering some no-factual, non-sensical emotion-laden drivel.
As it turns out that Mr. Roberts is
"an intrepid journalist who demonstrated courage of many kinds in the course of his career."
I wonder what exactly is the courage of many kinds? Isn't that courage is courage?

However, judging by the Wikipedia article on him, full of slavish praise, his ‘courage’ presumably included “standing by helplessly as his old friend tries to save his family from the rubble of their bombed-out house,” sleeping “in Saddam’s bed in one of his opulent palaces" and, perhaps the most daring act of all, "being interrogated by U.S. intelligence.” – that must’ve been tough, eh? Those illiterate brutes must’ve never heard of his ‘courageous’ books. Otherwise they would’ve surely thrown him in Guantanamo and subjected to torture by making him listen to Christina Aguilera instead of the Current.
However, this is just funny and to some extent predictable. What makes me mad though is another thing:
“It is not “only in Canada” that the decisions of juries are not universally applauded. More important, it is not “sadly”, the case that a writer doesn’t have to be brave to mount strong criticisms within, whether of the U.S. or anything else. This is called free speech, the practice of which is not always easy.”

I’m the biggest proponent of free speech you get. And I don’t hesitate to go “against the grain” and express opinions many would disagree with. But it is the travesty of these two pivotal virtues that makes me seethe with disdain. Yeah, being virulently anti-American in Canada is so freaking ‘uneasy’! And if you happen to express doubts that there’s something inherently brave about getting your kooky rant published in the main national newspaper, we will look down at ya, and tell you to fuck off for our decisions may not be “universally applauded.”
I remember an old Soviet joke about a conversation between Brezhnev and Nixon which goes like this:
Nixon: Mr. Brezhnev, there’s a freedom of speech in the US. Anyone can come to the White House and say “Down with Nixon” and nothing will happen to this man.
Brezhnev: Well, there’s the same freedom in the USSR. Anyone can come to the Red Square and say “Down with Nixon” and nothing will happen to that man either…


At 11:04 AM, Anonymous Waldo Liptak said...

Thanks!! I think Ill return in the near future

At 3:46 PM, Blogger Oleksa said...

you're welcome.


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