Biting bits

Bob
Bob Wakeham
Send to a friend

Send this article to a friend.

Out of the local loop for over a week (as a result of an enjoyable exile to the U.S. to visit again my Newfoundland senior-plus citizens), it takes a certain amount of nonspecific time to get the punditry juices in full flow, to re-ignite that satisfying desire to urinate on the powerful and influential, and to raise the level of sauce back to its lofty level before quality time with relatives and a lack of exposure to politicians and other targets intervened.
So, for those who care (those who don't have already placed my mug and accompanying prose on the floor as part of house-training exercises for the new puppy), you'll have to be content with a smorgasbord of editorial Timbits this week:
• That Gander judge whose sentencing of a first time drunk driver to jail was self-servingly
criticized by a lawyer deserves a medal for establishing a precedent that should be applauded widely in Newfoundland. (Such praise would include thumbs up from yours truly who practically blew up the breathalyser machine one night in 1983, was driven home by police, returned to a bar, got even drunker, and eventually got behind the wheel that same evening - a killer on the streets of St. John's; I should have been thrown in jail back
then).
• Doesn't it always appear that the same usual suspects pop up at budget time to scare us into believing that deficit spending is a brainless, short-term offering that expedites a horrible trip to the financial Apocalypse? You've seen their ubiquitous faces in the media, well-heeled board of trade types or economists with calculators for hearts or commentators who condemn the deficit because it's what's expected of them, all of these naysayers obsessed with the provincial debt, their views always in sharp contrast to those of ordinary souls trying to scratch out a living who don't give, and shouldn't give, a rat's ass about reducing money the province owes.
I'd give Danny Williams full marks for making hay while the Peckfordian sun shines. People and public institutions should get what's available in the coffers right now, and not suffer for years while the debt reaches a "reasonable" level on a ledger owned by nerdy, ice-in-the-veins accountant.

There it was, gone
• Speaking of Williams, I hounded the Fox TV screens during my visit to the States to see if the "governor of Newfoundland" - as the knowledgeable loon faction of the American right wing mistakenly labelled their unwitting weapon - was still having some influence on the health-care debate. But it appears his Andy Warhol 15 minutes of fame with the "Tea Party" is complete.
• Perhaps nowhere more than in Newfoundland, on a per capita basis, are we watching the Vatican spin on Pope Benedict's implausible claims to have been oblivious to child abuse.
The victims of the despicable likes of Jim Hickey and Doug Kenney must feel their blood boiling with the realization that round collar crime, as it was sometimes known in these parts, was being buried at the highest levels of the Catholic Church in Europe, including the offices of a future pope, the one-time Nazi Youth member, Joseph Ratzinger. (Yes, I know he claims to have been conscripted, but he was still there, marching his little German tootsies off for Hitler).
• Finally, congratulations to the local CBC crowd for their countless nominations in the electronic categories of the Atlantic Journalism Awards.
I'm still not a big fan of the rat-a-tat-tat, American cookie-cooker content of "Here and Now" and its shallow consequences. And I still long for more expansive features.
But there's obviously a lot of talent operating out of the Prince Philip Parkway studios, in radio and television, even if they're not always utilized properly.
And they do continue to strut their stuff, despite a continuum of revolving-door management regimes in Toronto who have tried to rip out the very souls out of CBC employees in Newfoundland with an "A-to-Z" approach to style and mandate - "let's try this one this year" - that would test the morale of the best, a philosophical approach that, as a friend of mine is fond of saying, would bring a tear to a glass eye.

Bob Wakeham has spent more than 30 years as a journalist in Newfoundland and Labrador. He can be reached by e-mail at bwakeham@nl.rogers.com.

Organizations: CBC, Catholic Church

Geographic location: Newfoundland and Labrador, U.S., St. John's Vatican Europe Prince Philip Parkway Toronto

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Thanks for voting!

Top of page

Comments

Comments

Recent comments

  • Polly
    July 02, 2010 - 13:16

    Wakeham , it is easy to fall under your spell . It sure is a heck of a lot easier to read someone's work , when they reflect your opinions . I am a little more cynical about Williams' making hay , I have another theory on that one . Nice take on CBC , and Here and Now .

  • Chris
    July 02, 2010 - 13:14

    Have to agree wih Bob with regards to the Church.

    Who knew that ''Pray for us'' was a typo.

  • Polly
    July 01, 2010 - 19:57

    Wakeham , it is easy to fall under your spell . It sure is a heck of a lot easier to read someone's work , when they reflect your opinions . I am a little more cynical about Williams' making hay , I have another theory on that one . Nice take on CBC , and Here and Now .

  • Chris
    July 01, 2010 - 19:52

    Have to agree wih Bob with regards to the Church.

    Who knew that ''Pray for us'' was a typo.