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Sunday, March 06, 2005

It's all about the chronic

There are those who would use last week's murder of four Alberta RCMP officers as an indication of the need for intensified penalties against marijuana grow-ops run by "organized crime." They seem to include most of this country's political leadership. I suspect that such people are, ipso facto, immune from shame; so I doubt Saturday's disclosure of the microscopic scale of James Roszko's supposed "grow-op" will embarrass or impede anyone. Not the federal Liberals, who endorsed harsher grow-op penalties at their annual meeting this weekend. And certainly not those drug-obsessed social conservatives who are capable of summoning endless loquacity about Roszko's horticultural preferences, and yet have mystifyingly little to say about his history of violence, threats, theft, and sexual abuse.

Posted by Colby Cosh on March 6, 2005 in Canadian Politics | Permalink


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It's far more likely to be a mutually-reinforcing, escalating-feedback screamfest between the media and our beloved pols.  As for "the entire Canadian media," well, here in Calgary, the local stations started off by noting the various problems with James Roszko's multiple, er, sources of income (that which they knew at the time -- the first 24 hours was obviously a tough time for gathering reliable data about the guy).  The focusing on the grow-op angle really started in earnest around the middle or end of day two, IIRC.  Hell, they couldn't even get proper statements from the RCMP about what had happened for almost a day after the event.

The politico-media complex always seems to do this sort of thing.  Should we be surprised?  It's how "news" (as opposed to news) gets generated these days...

Posted by: Garth Wood | 2005-03-06 3:19:01 PM

Well, if that's how you feel, you might read the post I put up on the BlogsCanada E-Group earlier today (it's not cross-posted on my own blog). You make an excellent point about his alleged history.

Posted by: tz | 2005-03-06 4:39:11 PM

I love reporters. They can go from claiming police act like "jack-booted stormtroopers" and "occupying armies" to implying there was incompetence because the cops did not have armour and heavy weapons without batting a eye.

Posted by: Buckahed | 2005-03-06 5:50:02 PM

Figure it out folks. This isn't a grow op issue. It isn't a gun control issue. It's about a nutjob who, with or without gun control, and with or without legal mj, was eventually going to do something like this. There is evil out there. It needs to be recognized earlier, and dealt with in a way that reduces the possibility of someone getting the opportunity to do this.

I truly resent anyone co-opting this tragedy to make their own little single issue point.

Posted by: Axeman | 2005-03-06 11:38:23 PM

Of course, had legacy media taken two minutes to read a few blogs they would have had the "isn't about grow-ops" angle the day of the shootings. But that is not news is it.

Posted by: Jay Currie | 2005-03-08 1:32:09 AM

CP24 in Toronto, City's cable news outfit, is broadcasting the funeral from Stony Plain right now. Just before the service started, one of the newsreaders called Roszko a "deranged gun lover".


Posted by: rick mcginnis | 2005-03-08 2:13:34 PM

Here is a classic example of how marijuana kills. It's a gateway drug to other harder drugs such as guns, rednecks, and psychos. I hit the occasional bong and usually if I have enough energy, i'll get up and get myself a coke and a bag of chips. But the second thing I want to do, is blow someones head off. Yeah right!!I'll tell ya, the only people I ever see fighting or shooting each other in my end of town are either gang members or drunken natives. I'm a Winnipeg North Ender here so I know violence. It's BS that some of the goverment officials and press tend to think this is about some homegrown stash. It's about a lack of respect for authority, and it's only going to get worse with our younger generation getting older.

Posted by: PDizzle | 2005-03-08 2:36:52 PM

They could have figured out it wasn't about grow-ops or guns just by watching the report on CBC last night. It focused on his total and complete insanity.


Posted by: wsam | 2005-03-08 2:38:51 PM

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