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Friday, August 27, 2004

Press Review

From today's edition of NORMAN'S SPECTATOR (with articles hotlinked).

(Note to readers: The Ottawa Citizen, National Post and Vancouver Sun were late today; my 7 AM (Montreal/Ottawa time) posting has now been updated to include content from these papers. Thanks for your patience; let me know by email if you'd like to have the international content, which is available earlier, posted separately, or prefer to have everything at once.)

In the UK, Sir Mark Thatcher is still making the news—and a new poll shows his Mum’s party is not faring much better under its new leader.

US papers lead with the Najaf deal brokered by Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani. Heading into the Republican convention, another poll shows President Bush holding a slight lead but by no means is he home in the White House.

The New York Times’ editorial board gives one star to his Administration on global warming, and in its lead editorial considers next steps on Abu Ghraib. The Washington Post’s editorial board weighs in on campaign finance reform. The Los Angeles Times’ editorial board sees Pentagon arrogance behind the prison abuse.

At home, too, the Najaf news gets front-page treatment. The National Post goes with the Daily Telegraph story; the Toronto Star with the New York Times’ dispatch.

The Star’s main competition today is the Sun, and it leads with strong follow-up to the sharp-shooting at Union Station. Rosie DiManno reports on reporters in Athens . CounterSpin producer, Paul Jay, says Hugh Segal should get new dining companions; I now have a better understanding of the defunct program. Carol Goar says the last thing we need is a fed-prov showdown over health, and she’s got some lines Paul Martin can use to stiff the preems.

Le Devoir editor Bernard Descoteaux says Paul Martin is behaving just like Jean Chrétien, but the Star’s editorial board urges the Prime Minister to stand firm; I want to be clear to readers of Norman ’s Spectator about this very important priority: when’s the last time he stood firm on anything? Another editorialist dumps on Carolyn Parrish (She was re-elected despite her “bastards” comment, Chantal Hébert writes in her defense.), while a third proposes that Ottawa establish a new federal agency to handle nuclear waste. (What’s next?— Toronto ’s snow?)

The Globe and Mail fronts a fine piece on refugees in Whitehorse and today's two national embarrassments, Carolyn Parrish and Ralph Klein. (The Calgary Herald says the Premier is doing Albertans no favour by snubbing the Prime Minister.)

On the comment page, Philip Anisman weighs in on securities reform. Rick Salutin wonders whether he’s too much of a Marxist; only in the bourgeois sense, I’d say. Jeff Simpson asks how we can say no to an international presence in Darfur; I’d ask how Canada could say yes and mean it. The editorial board pushes for prosecution of Augusto Pinochet, and pans the premiers’ pharmacare proposal--again.

John Ibbitson says Parrish is winning the fight on missile defence, and it’s too bad she thinks it’s too late for reasoned discussion. (The editorial board makes an effort.) Business columnist Deborah Yedlin says Albertans need leadership from their premier. (I hate to rain on her parade, but didn’t he say yesterday that he’s always thought it meant getting out ahead of the parade—or something equally profound? Well, as Chantal Hébert argues, the people are always right, and he’s clearly preparing to persuade them to vote right again.)

In the Ottawa Sun, Michael Harris also plumps for Parrish. In Toronto , Connie Woodcock wonders who keeps voting for the MP. In Edmonton , Neil Waugh’s beef is her timing. In Calgary , Rick Bell says happy days are here again, or there again, to be more precise. All that cash is not enough to cheer Link Byfield, who’s down on the latest Supremes.

In addition to Najaf, the National Post fronts some bad news for Nova Scotia ’s offshore energy industry, and a Muslim group that opposes including shari’a law in Ontario legislation. Inside, Lorne Gunter writes about the folly of the gun registry. John Ivison also shoots fish in a barrel, and he really unloads on Carolyn Parrish. The editorial board says she’s a disgrace to the Liberal caucus and should be kicked out.

David Asper defends Rosie Abella, doing a good job taking on columnists Andrew Coyne and Lorne Gunter. André Pratte says more money is not the answer and Canadians must make hard choices on health care, though he can't quite bring himself to spell them out.

Jonathan Kay, taking off from Dennis Ross’ Mideast tome, says the Palestinians have blown it (no pun intended). Sheila Copps writes about the Olympic dream; she’s less wet than usual. Colby Cosh says the Swift boat mudslinging demonstrates the superiority of their political system over ours; I’d say he’s all wet.

Elsewhere in CanWest land, the Montréal Gazette fronts a set-up piece on the PQ convention opening this evening. Josée Legault says Bernard Landry is in for the fight of his life and she clearly hopes he loses.

Speaking of losers, the editorial board says missile defence is a serious issue and “Carolyn Parrish has forfeited her right to be part of [the] discussion”; on the other hand, it stands foursquare behind free speech at CHOI and says the CRTC should be put out of business. (Memo to Alan Allnutt: don’t your editorial writers communicate?)

The Ottawa Citizen’s Susan Riley praises Parrish and says her critics are “purse-lipped prudes.” Mark Kennedy wades in with a fine analysis of the Klein-Martin spat. On the front page, the paper has some good news on West Nile virus, worrisome news about a flu medication that makes it more difficult to kill that virus, news about a troublesome Senator and a sneak peak at the Committee report on Supreme Court nominations.

The Vancouver Sun fronts Todd Bertuzzi’s not guilty plea, concerns about the spread of avian flu to humans, and a US investigation into some of BC’s leading polygamists.

The editorial board says Ms. Parrish is an “idiot” and it pans police proposals to intrude on privacy in the name of counter-terrorism. Barbara Yaffe says the premiers are on the losing end of the health care battle.

And finally, for those of you outside BC or who are out of town today or who are too cheap to buy the paper, here’s my take on the Supreme Court appointments, and on the judges and politicians I came to know and love during my career in government.


L'opposition se coalise contre Martin

Le Devoir fronts Alec Castonguay’s report :

Posted by Norman Spector on August 27, 2004 | Permalink


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Norman - Nicholas Packwood's post on Glenn Reynolds prompts me to ask a question - why not start including major voices on the blogosphere in your press reviews?

Reynolds is going to break 5 million hits this month - a quarter million a day - if his site meter is to be believed. That places his op-ed writing before a lot more people than many newspapers have subscribers. And it's pretty hard to argue that he has less influence.

Posted by: Kate | 2004-08-27 9:01:41 AM

Mike P asked yesterday when I sleep.

Posted by: Norman Spector | 2004-08-27 9:49:14 AM

I just figured you got paid to sit around and read the paper all day...

(Besides, it's a lot easier to cut and paste from blogs than it is to retype dead tree exerpts.)

Posted by: Kate | 2004-08-27 11:52:32 AM

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