After the darkness of 2020, it was tempting to just throw up your hands and focus on getting through the next day with a look forward to some unexpected new tax, or a new social bylaw. In other words, go to work, head down, and do not even consider making any fun comments around the water cooler. Who knows where that will end up? Avoid compliments to a co-worker that may be misunderstood. The list goes on. In other words, have an opinion on nothing. Some people may view it as an ‘unacceptable opinion.’ Think convoys, parents and schools.
Rome lasted a thousand years because it was primarily based on free speech, freedom of religion and a common economic market. When Rome conquered territories, the conquered were allowed to retain their customs and religion. Free trade evolved because people in Rome could invest in the newly conquered lands like the emerging markets of today. Free trade created peace because everyone could participate. They had financial panics from time to time just like we do today. But did they have the same political interference we have today? Their thousand-years record speaks for itself.
The day-to-day news we grew accustomed to cannot be trusted as it is all cleansed to meet someone’s requirement. Enter independent media with all the facts. They found out if you try to change the news culture under today’s regime it fights back. And you need the stomach and tenacity to resist.
The mission of journalism is to be ‘honest.’ Those in power have always attempted to control the narrative but mainly during wartimes. Good journalists are taught it is their duty to always hold ‘power’ to account. In other words, “hold the line.” Now where and when have we heard those three words lately? The media world as we knew it has been decimated. Mainstream has become muffled as to what they can report. It is too obvious to deny.
Enter social media. It of course has its upsides and downsides. Some people get ‘out of order,’ but you can snooze them or block them. Then Facebook became censored. Since the AI fact-checkers took over, don’t use any of your grandpa’s jokes or you’ll end up in Facebook jail. It became a joke because the censors were not real people. Until Bill C-18 showed up. Now you cannot post any news, or you get the reminder that Canadians are not allowed to see news on Facebook. Compliments of the Prime Minister’s office. This has just spread to the field of podcasting. There must be an election coming.
First, trucker vonvoys were “people with unacceptable viewpoints.” Now parents staking their relevance as parents have “unacceptable viewpoints.” Other protestors are fine. We have the words ‘true north strong and free’ in our national anthem. Something is not right. However, the national anthem can get changed on a ‘whim.’ We have experience.
The latest infringement on our freedom of speech is the announcement that companies offering podcasts or social media services are now required to register with the CRTC. We all know where this is going. Shortly, podcaster content will need to pass an ‘acceptable review.’
If the world was laughing at Canada yesterday, they are weeping for us today!