“How the Globe duped Toronto” - Terence Corcoran

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The fighting between the National Post and the Globe and Mail is nothing new, but Terence Corcoran of the National Post has one heck of a scathing report today in his column. A subscription is required to read it so most of you can’t but I’ll give you the first few paragraphs and the general idea. 

How the Globe duped Toronto 
Terence Corcoran, National Post
Published: Saturday, January 21, 2006

Why is Toronto so red? If Canada were the old Soviet Union, Toronto would be walling in nostalgia for the glory days of Communist rule. People aren’t Communists here, of course, or at least not too many of them are, but this is a city that thinks the best way to get rid of bad Liberals—on those rare occasions when one is spotted by the locals—is to move deeper to the left for more of the same by electing New Democrats. Why?

There are many reasons, but one of the big factors is the Toronto media. Led by The Globe and Mail and the Toronto Star, the Pravda and Isvestia of Canadian journalism, the entrenched media in Toronto are giant fronts for the old and decrepit Liberal/NDP establishment, wellsprings of agitprop for more and bigger government. On this election alone you could write a book about Toronto journalism and the relentless anti-Conservative twist embedded in most stories and opinion.

But let’s just take the latest news, the front pages of the Globe and the Star yesterday. Headlines in the Star: “The Fight over Ontario: Sex, rights and religion. City fears projects at risk. Tory win could threaten funding deals. Housing, TTC, daycare among concerns. Is religious right poised to set Harper’s agenda? Some fear freedoms to be stripped.” All that on one front page.

Routine stuff for the Star, which recently headlined the idea that the victims of gun violence on the streets of Toronto were “Mike Harris’s Children” and therefore the product of Conservative government. But yesterday the Star was no match for the team that put together the front page of the Globe. “Harper’s lead takes a hit,” said the main headline, followed by a subhead: “With Tory Leader straying from script, poll shows support for his party is waning.”

[…]

He then goes on to explain how he thinks the Globe and Mail manipulated voters by providing analysis of polling data wrongly, knowingly.  It should be noted that the polling data in question is the same polling data used by the CTV.  The two outfits are owned by the same Bell Globemedia, and they contracted with Allan Gregg’s Strategic Council for all their polling this election. 

Basically the theory involves the fact that their poll showed an 18-point lead for the Conservatives one day (I blogged about it here because I was equally perplexed by the fact they’d buried this news on page A7 and I could barely find it on CTV.ca). 

But the pollster admits now was a mistake of sorts.  An anomaly.  Then a couple of days later when they got back on track with their polling, it showed a more normal 9-point lead, which was correct and all the polls were showing a similar result.  However, the Globe took it upon itself to announce on their front page yesterday that the Conservatives’ lead had plummeted by nine points and that they were losing their lead (etc). 

Of course that was shear nonsense because the 18-point lead was wrong to start with, and they knew it. 

As Corcoran wrote:

The headline story should have said: “Globe poll error corrected.” Instead, the spinning journalists turned it into evidence that the Conservative lead was declining—a lead that existed only in the Globe poll.

It seems to me that some people would think this was a blatant effort to manipulate the election by misleading the people.  Of course that would be speculation and conjecture and we don’t know all the facts, but it sure would be interesting to delve into this.

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