I'm afraid I'm just too busy to compose one of my trademark rants, but this issue is too huge for me to remain silent. So I'm going to just cut and paste a few things in here.
First off, the letter I sent to the Right Horrible Prime Minister:
Right Hon. Stephen Harper
Prime Minister of Canada
80 Wellington Street
Ontario Ottawa K1A 0A2
Dear Prime Minister Harper,
I can't believe that the government of Canada would consider bailing out private broadcasters while leaving CBC to face a $200 million deficit with no help whatsoever. Please make sure CBC has the resources it needs to do its job.
Arts, Culture and Communication are the lifeblood of any country. When industry and economy are down in times such as these, Communication, Motivation and Inspiration are especially key -- not just to keeping us afloat, but speeding up our recovery.
Failing to properly fund our NATIONAL COMMUNICATOR is short-sighted, and, frankly, quite idiotic. Canada needs this unifying tool. Do not destroy it.
Next, a petition request I received from Avaaz Canada:
Canada’s media networks have all been slammed by the recession. But the government is reportedly considering bailouts for its friends at private companies CTV and CanWest, while forcing the CBC to drastically cut 800 staff and programming.
Our CBC is a national treasure, and a pillar of public−interest journalism in a country whose media is owned by a few large firms. We won’t hear an outcry from their media outlets, and the CBC is too principled to use its megaphone to make the case for itself. We are the only voice the CBC has.
We urgently need a massive public outcry to Save the CBC, click below to sign the petition and forward this email to everyone who might care about this:
The petition will be delivered directly to the government, through Parliament, ads, and stunts such as an airplane pulling a giant Save the CBC banner over Ottawa. In each case the number of signatures on the petition will be crucial to the effectiveness of the campaign, so let’s get as many people as possible to sign.
The CBC is facing a budget shortfall that amounts to just $6 per Canadian, but its request to the government for a bridging loan to cover this was denied. The deep cuts the CBC is making will damage the organization across the board, and they will not be the last. If we don’t stand up for the CBC now, it stands to die a death by a thousand cuts. Harper’s minority government is politically vulnerable – public outrage could turn the government around on this, but it has to happen now. Let's move quickly.
Ricken, Lisa−Marie, Laryn and the whole Avaaz Canada team.
Next, the letter I received yesterday from Friends of Canadian Broadcasting:
CBC's creative people have just been through the week from hell.
The cuts announced last week will leave our beleaguered public broadcaster a shadow of its former self, especially in smaller communities where CBC is often the only option.
This is all so unnecessary, yet this may be only the beginning.
More cuts to CBC news are expected mid-April. And if Stephen Harper's hand-picked President cannot raise enough through a firesale of CBC assets, he says that even more cuts will be required.
But there is a glimmer of hope. I urge you to join with me to stoke it.
Viewers and listeners have been outraged by the events of the past week. We have bombarded our MPs with calls, letters and emails demanding action. A storm of protest has erupted in the House of Commons as a result, and the government is under intense pressure to prevent the announced cuts.
Please join with me to turn up the volume by sending a message to the Prime Minister today demanding action.
There is a simple and inexpensive solution to CBC's funding shortfall.
Among modern industrialized nations, Canada in near the bottom when it comes to investing in public broadcasting. The average is $80 per citizen and countries like Great Britain, Germany and Norway invest even more.
In Canada, our government provides only $33 per citizen. That's just not enough for CBC to serve as the public broadcaster Canadians want and need. The House of Commons Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage has recognized this and called for an increase of $7 per person - to $40.
Please join me to urge our government to bump up Canada's investment to at least half the average. That would mean only a $7 increase for each Canadian. Per year!
If we don't act today, the pressure on the government and the momentum we have built will be lost.
Seven dollars is a small price to pay to keep our CBC.
Please act now... before it's too late.
FRIENDS of Canadian Broadcasting
P.S. Please feel free to forward this email
The Friends of Canadian Broadcasting also have a FaceBook site. I encourage everyone to support the CBC!!!
(Who knows, I may still end up ranting later, but right now I've got a tour and CD release to work on