PM’s staffers attempt to control media in South Africa

And it doesn’t really work. Local journalist Barry Bateman tweets the encounter.



PM’s staffers attempt to control media in South Africa

  1. WTF is the Canadian media doing covering the PM’s little jaunt to South Africa at taxpayers’ expense, just to get a few photo ops? Oh yeah, giving him the photo ops.

    Does the media feel harassed or belittled by PMO? Well, maybe they should STOP KNUCKLING UNDER TO THE EMPEROR.

      • Mr Wells, the NP has a photo here (scroll down to the second photo) that begs for a caption contest. Not exactly your bailiwick I know, but perhaps you could pass it on to SF.

        • Indeed it does.[ who’s SF?]

          PMSH :’Ho ho ho, Jean, that’s a good one…we’ve been sticking to the whole eefing country for about 20 years now, between the two of us…shall we order champagne?’

          JC’ No no Stephen…you gotta put Brian in there to make it up to dirty years now!!..Pity Pierre wasn’t ere too eh!’…more howls ensue.

          Bit low i know. It’s actually nice to see those two take off their partisan hats and have a laugh for once. Makes em look human.
          Which to get back to the cynical, makes me wonder if Mike 514 wasn’t bang on…there is about to be a charm offensive from the PMO…pity bout the runway stuff though.

          • Scott Feschuk

          • gotcha

        • Kim Campbell tries to join the conversation, but can only get as far as “well, when I was Prime Minister…” before she’s drowned out by laughter.

          • Not sure that can be beat
            Well done and non partisan to boot

          • She was Mulroney’s smokescreen as he skulked out the back door. Always be wary of ‘”firsts” in politics.

        • I would guess Harper was on one of mimic routines. and by his expression he was probably in the middle of a Mulroney take-off (Brian was in the can, weak bladder and all) and you know Chretien would love it.

      • Goodness. Mixed indeed.

        • Yikes! I guess Harper’ll take another… look! the PM’s goons are being mean to the press again story!… over Bibi’s press?

      • Let him go. Just don’t cover him. It’s your choice.

    • Of course, this will be described by CPC supporters as more proof the media is left-biased… as would be any refusal to cover the PM. I’m sure the South African press is also now to be declared as anti-CPC.

      • I’m sure the South African press is also now to be declared as anti-CPC.

        Not just their press, but their AIR FORCE too!

    • Um were it the US president about 50 secret service agents wouldn’t have let this tool Mr. Bateman anywhere near the President and they wouldn’t be taking any guff from S.A. press minions.

      • I know reading is hard, but the Canadians aren’t security, and the South Africans are members of the SA Air Force.

      • Ok, perhaps the SA Police force/military could detain and question your dear leader for white supremist group involvement instead?

      • Just because Harper & Co caved in to U.S. security people doesn’t mean SA has to. This looks really good on Harper.:)

    • At taxpayer’s expense? I believe the press pays its own way, even on government aircraft.

    • Frank,
      The Canadian media outlets pay … handsomely … to fly with the PM. No taxpayer money spent on them.

      The plethora of PR and busy bodies from the PMO, however.

  2. The headline for this article should be changed to “Canadian Embassy staffers” from “Prime Minister’s staffers”. It’s unfairly misleading as currently written.

    • One of the women is apparently Montana Brisbin, a PMO staffer.

      • Obviously. Everything is always Harper’s fault. He’s pure evil and if you try to view anything through any other lens, you’re doing it wrong.

        • Facts are an awful thing, NotRick.

        • So, is that a “No, that’s not Montana Brisbin” then?

          As for everything always being Harper’s fault, I don’t think anyone believes that anymore. If this is an attempt to blame Harper though, why would anyone want to claim that the young women work in the PMO? If there’s one group of Canadians anywhere on the planet that the PM has demonstrated he has no control over whatsoever, it’s staff members in the PMO.

          If those two women actually are in the PMO, that would seem to be GREAT insulation for the PM against any argument that this is in any way his fault. With the possible exception of Justin Trudeau and Tom Mulcair’s immediate families, I don’t believe that there is a group of Canadians anywhere on the planet that the PM is less responsible for than members of the PMO.

          • Careful you don’t poke your tongue clean through the cheek. LOL

          • Speaking of Justin Trudeau…. where exactly is he? Dealing with issues of much greater importance than Nelson Mandela, I’m sure.

          • Didn’t realize he’d been invited.

          • You’re probably right. I’m sure there’s not a single person in South Africa who even knows who Justin Trudeau is, nor would see any reason to invite such an entitled trust fund baby to a memorial for such a great man. Heck, Trudeau’d probably get caught trying to smuggle a bag of weed into the country.

          • I didn’t say he wasn’t invited.

            Jeez, NotRick. For your sake I kept it to a simple, five word response and you still couldn’t understand it.

          • lol …you so mean to him.

            In fairness you didn’t say Simon says now, did you?

          • Wow.
            That’s lame.
            Grade 3 lame.
            Is this your “A” game?

          • Typical Con response By the way the pc’s are last in the poles.

          • I’d like to like this but the teacher in me just can’t support opinions that have spelling errors . . .

          • The question is does anyone know who Harper is.

          • Trudeau surrendered his seat to Irwin Colter, since Colter had a very direct and personal relationship with Mandela (he was, by request, part of Mandela’s intenational legal team 27 years ago, and met Mandela personally twice).

            Bet you feel classy now!

          • Are you sure it doesn’t have anything to do with the South African government frowning on allowing admitted drug users into the country?

          • I’m no Trudeau fan, but in this case it appears he did something that was selfless and honourable – arguably at the expense of gaining a “photo op”. You, on the other hand, are coming off as a demented partisan POS.

          • Right, I forgot that Liberal’s are physically prevented from flying anywhere unless the flight is paid for by Canadian taxpayers.

          • Q.E.D.

          • I’m saving this for later, as I’m almost certain that if Trudeau decides to use his own money to fly to South Africa and CRASH THE MEMORIAL you’ll turn around on a dime and be apoplectic at his gall.

          • Rick Omen, you sound too much like your great leader.

          • And you flunked punctuation 101, right? Typical Con – uneducatated and proud of it?

          • So I guess a number of U,.S. Presidents, both past and present, will be denied entry?

          • The Liberals were accorded (quite properly) just one seat in the delegation (past PMs excepted). Irwin Cotler was quite rightly given that one seat, having worked to free Mandela from prison, as one of Mandela’s lawyers as far back as 1981.

          • So, not trolling here, but how did Redford get an invite? I know she was on Mandala’s legal team as well – that was the time when she said Canada was such a terrible place to live – but was her involvement with Mandala the reason she was chosen?

          • I believe that Redford was chosen due to her previous relationship with Mandela, though I presume that there were a certain number of spots set aside for a few provincial officials generally in the delegation, so that personal connection is why Redford was invited over, say, another Premier.

            Also, for what it’s worth, Redford wasn’t on Mandela’s “legal team” in the same sense as Cotler. Redford met Mandela shortly AFTER he’d been released from prison, while she was working for Joe Clark. Her work in South Africa involved helping the nation with constitutional development and preparing for the first truly multi-racial elections.

            IMHO, Redford seems like a perfectly obvious addition to the official delegation.

          • She should definitely be there. I was wondering about Stephen Lewis – there was no mention of him but it turns out he’s go on over ahead on his own.

          • First rule of trial lawyers notRick[ and internet commentary – in your case trolling] never ask a question you don’t know the answer to.

          • Mr. Cotler was a big enough fish for the liberals to send to the Mandela delegation, after all Mr. Cotler is one of the most respected in the liberal party and personally met the man to my knowledge.

          • Gave up his seat so Cotler could go.

          • Try reading more than Con-bot comments.

            Justin Trudeau gave his seat on the plan to Liberal MP Cotler, who was part of Mandela’s legal team while Mandela was in prison. Justin Trudeau showed enough class to give the seat to someone with a personal involvement with Mandela.

          • He’s in the House – the place you say he never attends.

          • How could it be Harpers’ fauilt – he know’s what is on a school girls facebook wall but has no idea what goes on in his own office.

        • Um, it was Montana Brisbin trying to push around the SAAF officials. Not Montana Harper. I’m not even sure if a Montana Harper exists, notRick.

          • Who is Montana Brisbin?

        • Watch it! Those lines are the exclusive property of Beaner.

        • Harper is long from gaining sainthood.

        • Well, when you want to be known as the “Harper” government, then you better be able to take the much deserved heat.

        • Isn’t it all “Harper’s staffers” anyways these days? I think I saw “National Action Plan” stickers on their butts.

      • Well, there you go.

    • Are we sure they’re from the embassy and not the PMO?

      Yes the guy tweeting does mention the embassy, but he also calls the women “agents”, and while it’s by no means impossible that this is true, I personally have a hard time believing that the two women depicted are members of the PM’s RCMP security detail.

      • I didn’t think so either. In the second last tweet above, Bateman calls them ” “agents” from the embassy” I took the quotes around agents to mean he was using the term in a joking manner.

  3. I have no background in diplomatic operations, but I’m pretty sure it’s a good idea to avoid bossing around and cheesing off officials and journos from the host country when there’s a whole bunch of cameras pointed in your direction.

    • Really you think the US Secret Service is allowing the S.A. press to decide how close they will be to President Obama? Live in the real world.

      • I live in the real world. In my real world there’s NO WAY that those two women are members of the PM’s security detail. What’s more, there’s no suggestion made that any of this was ever about security. This was, apparently, all media relations work, and an attempt to get Canadian media preferential access for photos.

    • Sounds like you’re over qualified for the job, from a Harper staffer’s pov.

  4. The bloody media feel entitled to shove cameras in people’s face like it is a god given right . Who gives a hoot about these self ritious dweebs.

    • Have you perhaps misread the article? The staffers involved WANTED the Canadian media there. They WANT pictures of the PM getting off the plane in SA with a bunch of former Prime Ministers.

      It was just the South African media that they wanted moved, so as not to get in the way of the Canadian media’s pictures presumably (and, presumably, because the SA media may still be in the habit of asking questions of world leaders, whereas the Canadian media has long ago given up on their attempts to get the PM to answer questions in public).

      Thankfully, the South African Air Force officers involved appeared to know EXACTLY how to respond to a request from Canadian officials that South African reporters be moved to a different section of a South African airport. They told them to go fly a kite.

    • Umm, yeah that is called freedom of the press–it’s a enshrined right in our charter.

      • And the Canadian Charter of Rights has exactly what legal bearing in South Africa? And while you’re digging up that nugget, could you please point out where in the charter it states that anybody who calls themself a “journalist” has the right to be wherever they want, whenever they want?

        • It’s right after the part that says Harper’s political hacks have the right to issue orders to military personnel in foreign countries.

        • Fair point. I don’t suppose that the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms has any more pull in South Africa than a Canadian political staffer does.

        • Isn’t the new journalist called a blogger? Get a blog set up for $14.95 and you should be entitled to a press pass anywhere!

          • So name the bloggers who traveled with Harper.

  5. This is confusing. Who are the agents? What is the SAAF?

    • I doubt that the two women involved are really “agents” (which would presumably imply RCMP security) so the question on that front is, did they actually identify themselves as “agents” (and if so, are they?) or is that just how this journalist is casually referring to them? The women in question are the two women seen carrying the velvet rope above.

      SAAF is South African Air Force. It was apparently South African Air Force Security and Media Relations personnel that the two women were giving a hard time to.

      • My guess is the South African reporter is a little off on his terminology. he also refers to the Canadian PM as president.

        • I’d also guess that the “agent” line was somewhat tongue in cheek, as the story would seem to be one of two political staffers who were trying to bully local officials by ACTING LIKE Secret Service agents, but failing miserably.

          That’s the best part of the story, imho. A couple of young political staffers trying to push their (virtually non existent) weight around and getting called on it. My favourite part is the apparent reaction of the local air force personnel. Their overall reaction appears to have been essentially “Look ladies, I’m a South African Air Force officer, this is a South African Air Force base, and those people over there are South African reporters, so if you don’t mind, I’m just going to go back to ignoring everything you’re saying to me”.

          Frankly, given that at least one of the Canadian staffers apparently even told the official SA Air Force photographer to move (on an SA Air Force base remember) it seems to me that the two staffers could arguably be considered lucky to have not been introduced to any South African Military Police officers.

    • SAAF = South African Air Force communications official. Clarification added.

  6. My god. One South African reporter gets his panties in a bunch because he’s not allowed to go wherever he pleases, and this somehow becomes “news”?

    I’m not sure how seriously I can take anything from a guy who refers to Canadas “Pres” and our “secret service”. But I guess doing 30 seconds of research before taking to Twitter is too arduous a task for such a stellar reporter.

    I wonder what Mandela would have said about members of his nations media treating guests to the country in such an uncivilized manner.

    • This comment was deleted.

      • What am I “unable to comprehend”, exactly? The only “source” for this story is one single jerk’s Twitter feed.

        • I’d try to explain it to you but I’d just be rewriting the story above, which you’ve already demonstrated you can’t understand.

    • To be fair, the reporter in question seemed less annoyed that anyone told him where he could and could not go in his own country than he was annoyed that Canadian officials were attempting to get South African Air Force personnel to tell him where he could and could not go in his own country. Annoyed at the request, mind you, but happy that the SAAF personnel in question told the Canadians to stuff it.

      This isn’t a story about how South Africa treats guests, it’s about how Canadians act as guests. If South African government officials attempted to get RCAF officers to move Canadian reporters from one area of the tarmac of a CF base to another, in order, apparently, to allow South African reporters to get exclusive footage of the President of South Africa touching down in Canada, we’d think it was an annoying display of overbearance too.

    • That’s two or three times now you have invoked the name of Mandela as cover for your odious toadyiing…have some respect and cut it out!!!

  7. The leaders from across the country—and across political the political spectrum—getting off the plane together was the perfect photo op.

    Yet, not a single photo of said politicians. It is truly wonderful when the media can make the media the story. Who cares about the passing of Mandela, some reporter thinks Canadian officials are jerks to the media, that’s much more important!

    • Are you not perhaps rushing to judgement a bit on the “no pictures” angle? I mean, I know the media works fast in 2013, but the plane’s only been on the ground for less than two hours, hasn’t it? And if I’m not mistaken, the Globe and Mail already has a picture of the PM and his wife getting off the plane on their website.

      That said, if the Canadian media really didn’t get any shots of the PM’s arrival in spite of Canadian officials trying to cajole South African Air Force officials into moving the South African media out of their way, that’s a pretty stunning indictment of everyone involved.

      • I like what you did there…incompetence in addition to bossiness.

  8. Much ado about nothing.

    • That would be true in the normal course of events, but this sort of thing has happened more then just this once.

      • This kind of thing probably happens seven or eight times per day, for each political party, during a federal election campaign.

        • But we aren’t in an election campaign. My understanding is our head[s]of state are attending a memorial for one of histories great icons – not grubbing about for a photo shoot.
          In any case i reject your premise. Ordering the press around is a Harper speciality.

  9. Most importantly, would someone please tell Barry Bateman that we don’t have a president?! (yet)

    • And if we did our secret service would not be letting him anywhere near our President, as he won’t be allowed anywhere near President Obama.

      • Are seriously making the comparison? We are still a middle ranking power…or in Harper speak: a Northern welfare state.

  10. Excellent! Harper hasn’t even got off the plane and the tone of the visit is already negative. Like Rick Omen I am pleased about this.

  11. Mr. Bateman sound sexist and derogatory to two Canadians trying to do their jobs, which is put in place a cordon for the safety of the the Canadian delegation. They aren’t busy bodies Mr. Bateman. They are women with careers that involve managing how close people can get to our PM. Were it the Americans you would have about 50 secret service agents telling your people exactly where to be and you wouldn’t be calling them busy bodies. South Africa actually doesn’t get to decide how close their press gets to our Prime Minister. His staff and our security do.

    • No, they’re not security. They’re political hacks.

    • I’d bet a sizeable amount of money that those two young women are political staffers, or at best embassy staffers. I can see no evidence whatsoever that they’re security, or doing a job related to security. They were there for media management, not security.

    • This comment was deleted.

      • Woah! Language Sean!

        edit: just kidding Sean, no reason to delete that whatsoever. She/he is a moron.

        • Fair enough. I will call them reporters in the future.

  12. Aren’t they helping you get more access? How is this a story?

    • They were arguably attempting to help the CANADIAN media get more access, yes, but they were attempting to do this by getting the South African Air Force to move the South African media out of the way.

      Now, this will never be a big story, but still, when political staffers from country X attempt to get Air Force personnel from country Y to move journalists from country Y from one section of country Y’s air force base to another, in order to give better photo access for the reporters visiting from country X, somebody’s gonna talk about it!

      One could argue, in fact, that these types of stories might come up a lot more often if our local Canadian media hadn’t just resigned themselves to being treated this way by the PMO and the government in general. As it is, we tend to just get this type of story when the Canadian government is dealing with the foreign press, as the foreign press just won’t put up with a lot of the B.S. that our Canadian press has apparently become resigned to.

      • If you bring in one more factor other then x and y my eyes are going to seriously glaze over.

        • Inevitably, someone will bring up the fact that if we were dealing with country Z there’d have been dozens of secret service agents everywhere, and the damned media would have been put in their place.

          • Being mistaken for country Z, but without dozens of SS agents is a bit of a come down then.

  13. Harper shouldn’t be there at all. It’s a job for our Head of State.

    So it should be the GG, Mulroney and Chretien.

    • Prime Ministers routinely attend state funerals. But even following your logic, why should Mulroney and Chretien be there?

      • Because Mulroney pushed the sanctions [against tremendous opposition] that finally got Mandela out of prison….Mandela considered him a good friend.

        Chretien gave him Canadian citizenship.

        • OK…. then why is Mulcair there?

          • I have no idea.

            I can understand Redford and Cutler….and our former GG Jean was supposed to be going as well….but the rest shouldn’t be there. It’s a funeral not a circus.

          • So you’re suggesting it would be appropriate for Harper to attend a circus in South Africa, but not a memorial for Nelson Mandela?

            It’s obvious why Harper’s there. He’s the highest elected official in Canada, and he’s representing Canadians as such.

          • Harper is not our head of state….the GG is. Harp simply wants the photo op. He and Rob Anders should be at home.

          • This comment was deleted.

          • Harper should not be there for any reason. He has no connection to Mandela. He’s just trying for a photo-op.

          • In fairness, it is pretty uncomfortable in Ottawa for Mr. Harper these days..So both a photo-op and and a good excuse to get out of the kitchen when the heat is high.

          • Heh…well that’s certainly true….but flying into SA and acting like some Colonial Overlord wasn’t very bright either,

          • Undoubtedly true… I think Harper is just poorly served by the people he likes to surround himself with; the obnoxious, the ignorant, the pavement-ready. And the turn-over in the PMO has been a killer lately.

          • LOL the ‘pavement-ready’….very accurate….I like that!

          • I don’t get your obsession with Trudeau on this particular file. There was one seat on the plane for a Liberal Party representative. Rather than take that seat for himself, Trudeau sent Irwin Cotler, a man who started working to free Nelson Mandela (as one of his lawyers) when Justin Trudeau was still 10 years old.

            I don’t understand how even the most shrill partisan can argue that sending Irwin Cotler to represent the Liberals at Mandela’s memorial is anything other than ENTIRELY appropriate.

          • Combine “dumb as a post” to “most shrill partisan” and you’ve got the answer.

          • A very accurate portrayal of Justin Trudeau.

          • Obsession?

          • Well, I mean that relatively speaking, of course.

            I’m still trying to figure out how Trudeau’s name even came up in this context. I can see a quick “Where’s Trudeau?” question popping up, but I don’t understand how that line of questioning continues for a nanosecond after the explanation “He sent Irwin Cotler to represent the Liberals, as Irwin Cotler was once one of Nelson Mandela’s lawyers”.

            I’ll give you that “obsession” is hyperbole, but you’ve mentioned Trudeau in three different comments here on a story that couldn’t have less to do with Justin Trudeau. That does seem a bit excessive.

          • Do you mean to tell us that Irwin Cotler has been sucking on the public purse defending that murdering terrorist Mandella, since Son of Whatsit was 10 years old.

            I wonder how much we’re in the hole over that?

          • Cotler worked as a private citizen to help free Mandela in the 1980s. Cotler didn’t enter Parliament until 1999, after Mandela had already been freed.

            Rest assured that none of your tax dollars went to support Irwin Cotler’s work helping to free Nelson Mandela.

          • This comment was deleted.

          • I never actually said he worked for free (though I suppose it’s likely that he did) I just said that he didn’t get any of YOUR money for the work.

          • why are you responding to this crank douche?

          • The Queen Emily. – Wacky Johnson is a stand in.

          • Wrong Emily, it’s a circus. Complete with piles of junketing elephant dung,

          • Emily &#174 where’s Chief Theresa?

        • The only reason Malroney is on this free junket is because terrorist Mandella was his South Afican bank manager. Malroney’s gone to make sure Mandella didn’t pilfer his wall safe.

          • Is the guy that directed the fake moon-landing film going to the funeral also?

          • I don’t know, what’s his name. Is he a Malroney money man?

        • Emily, if the Ottawa flakes could have borrowed the embalmed body of Joe Stalin for a week, they’d have given it Canadian citizenship, free health care and the Order of Canada.

          • And….it’s midnight. So off you go now, the adults have work to do.

            Nitety nite Jamboy.

          • Here’s a quotation for you Emily. It’s from a piece in the Kingston Whig-Standard late 1940’s or early 1950’s, almost 70 years ago. It was written by Robertson Davies as part of his satirical column – The Papers of Samuel Marchbanks

            Marchbanks writing to Haubergeon Hydra the Deputy Expediter of the Plan for the Beautification of the Dominion Capital:

            “I had occasion to visit Ottawa recently, and as I entered the city by train, and again as I left it, I was painfully struck by its resemblance to a foreign capital which I shall only describe as M-sc-w.”

            and further on:

            “You have never been struck as I was, by the resemblance of Parliament Hill to the Kr-ml-n. Grey mist, air of brooding, secrecy, that sense of doom.”

            The point is that, Robertson Davies, one of Canada’s great scholars, authors, publishers and the Master of Massey College was noticing an Ottawa peculiarity 70 long years ago. And this terrorist funeral procession for Nelson Mandella brings it to mind.

            (ref) (ISBN-0-7725-1539-5) (Page 445)
            The Papers of Samuel Marchbanks – Irwin Publishing – 1985

          • Very stupid comment Emily.

            It’s one thing to deliver a piece of your nonsense to me. But here you dump Emily Puck on Robertson Davies, one of the country’s most brilliant men and staunchest Canadians.

            Well done Emily!

          • Marchbanks is a spoof John. Like you.

          • This comment was deleted.

          • Tough to have a dummy posting me allatime when I’m trying to work…..

            Now off you go before I’m tempted to hit you with the canape tray.

          • must suck being an old loser with no money and no sense

            let me guess, you vote Harper – how do you think I know?

            because all the goofs and the douchebags vote Harper – they recognize one of their own

          • When Mandella’s crazy wife Whinnie went after him for a divorce settlement she wanted 50% and sued him for $5 million.

            There he was a peace loving old terrorist with nothing in mind but the well being of his people.

            So tell me, Bopo, how your buddy manage to scrape $10 million off the backs of the people he cared for.

          • just want to say, youre a nobody coward scumbag, who accomplished less in his entire life than Mandela did in a minute.

            Go pretend to be somebody somewhere else, loser.

    • Why should Mulroney and Chretien be their if Harper shouldn’t?

      • Ugh. there

      • Because Mulroney and Chretien were actually heads of state at the same time as Mandela, were considered friends, and were instrumental in the international acceptance of Mandela, and the re-emergence of South Africa after apartheid.

        Harper is really just tagging along with them purely due to his current title.

        • His current “title” being Prime Minister of Canada.

        • Prime Ministers are not Heads of State. The GG represents the queen as head of state.

        • Just for the sake of accuracy, Mulroney and Chretien were never head of state either.

    • The Queen?

      • The GG

        • I think Leroy’s point is that the GG is not technically our Head of State.

          • Kindly skip your ‘water is wet’ routine. It’s old and boring.

          • OK, but just for the record, water is still wet.

          • LOL and no one would have known that without you pointing it out, I’m sure.

          • I do prefer your “water is wet” routine over the “all knowing” routine…but that is probably just me.

    • This comment was deleted.

      • John….I’m sure you’re older than 4.

        It’s time you started acting like it.

        • I have to tell you Emily I never thought I’d live to witness a Canadian government farce like this one.

          Imagine loading half of Ottawa on a plane to go to South Africa for the funeral of a big time communist gangster.

          Emily, did they take any grief counsellors along with them?

          • And like a 4 year old you have a compulsion to blurt out any and every silly thing going through your head…..

          • This comment was deleted.

          • While adults check their watches and wonder what time you’ll toddle off to bed to babble to your teddy bear instead….

          • This comment was deleted.

          • And people would happily give you a plate of canapes to hasten your departure….

          • They’ll have to use another method Emily. You’ll never catch the Marmalade boys picking up a French horse d’oeuvre.

          • Horse d’oeuvre? Très intéressant, monsieur. I wonder what’s in them?

          • you’d never catch them in a real job either

            your whole family is trash – you are worth less than the s*** on my shoe

            your a putz, a nobody, a schmuck, now run along and dont forget to take your meds

          • Listen, if you’re talking to Emily&#174 tell her I’ve finally figured out who she is, her political what do you call it.

            We earlier figured out she wasn’t Sheila Copps or Judy LaMarsh and she won’t admit to being Pauline. but when she told me she was spraying horse pucky working for Vladimir Putin on his new media thing, I figured it out.

            Emily&#174, is the love child of communist spy, Gerda Munsinger. I haven’t yet figured out who her father is but it might be Mitchell Sharp.

          • His parents owned a very successful amusement park in Montreal (Belmont Park). I don’t like the Trudeaus, but they didn’t steal it.

      • hey look, a racist coward wannabe, who hides behind his computer

        i wouldnt piss on you if you were on fire, scumbag

        • Well I’m glad then that I have you stirred up because that leaves me safe.

          On account of your offer I talked with your urologist. He told me there’s a couple of things crawling around in you that worry him. He’s not sure what they are.

          So look Bopu, take your medicine. I hope you get better quickly because we can’t afford to have valuable scarce medical resources wasted on you.

  14. Did you really think there wouldn’t be a negative twist on this story – when it’s about Harper and comes from the Canadian Media – even though Bateman says it wasn’t an issue for them and not Harper’s staff’s fault? Par for the course for McLeans. Unbiased indeed!

    • Just for the sake of accuracy, no, this wasn’t ever an “issue” for the SA press per se, but that was the case IN SPITE OF the machinations of the two Canadian staffers.

      This wasn’t an issue for the local press simply because A) the South African Air Force personnel approached by the young Canadian staffers told the two Canadians to pound salt, and B) though the Canadian press was initially placed directly in front of the local SA press, the Canadian press simply MOVED OF THEIR OWN ACCORD when politely asked to by their local compatriots.

    • Sometimes, when all the stories about a guy are negative, it’s because they’re accurate.

      I’m trying to recall all the good press about Nixon just before he resigned, but you know, i just don’t remember any. Must have been a media conspiracy.

    • No better time to spread lies about the PM than the passing of one of the world’s greatest leaders. I’m sure that’s exactly what Mandela would have wanted.

      • No better time then to let the world see what your attitude is to press freedom, then when you’re in someone’s else’s country to attend the burial of an icon… is there?

      • Are they lies?
        Or is this another one of those “Rick said it, so it’s a fact” times you are so famous for?

      • What parts of the story are “lies”?

        I’ll grant you that there is almost no chance whatsoever that either of the staffers involved are “agents” of any sort (though I think the reporter was just being cheeky with that description… I don’t think he was actually attempting to report that the staffers were part of the PM’s security team, and it seems pretty self-evident that they are not). Other than “those almost certainly aren’t ‘agents'” angle though, where else do you see “lies” in this story?

        • They’re part of the PM’s media team. The people who shield him from unwelcome questions from Chinese reporters.

          • Montana Brisbin , Advance to the Prime Minister. They both work for the Prime Minister as advance preparation team.


        • I think his “lies” comment is in reference to the link in the post he was responding to.

          • Yes, thanks for that. When I originally responded, I thought he was discussing the main story above. I can’t speak to the veracity of the “Northern Foundation” stuff.

            That said I DID see a meme going around social media that was a picture of David Cameron with the caption “In the 1980s I campaigned for Nelson Mandela to be executed as a terrorist. Today, he’s my hero”. What surprised me (based on stuff like the above?) was how many Canadians were chiming in to the comments that “Harper’s no better”.

            I’d write that all off as hogwash if it weren’t for the pesky existence of one Rob Anders.

          • The lady who wrote the blog entry people are linking to has done serious research. She cites all her sources, with the page numbers, etc.

        • Press agents

      • Like you give a rat’s ass about Mandela.

      • hey, youre buddy John Marmalade, a big time Harper supporter, calls Mandela a terrorist

        conservatives make me sick – you are SCUM

        • Mandella was not only a terrorist but a crook too..

          When his crazy wife Whinnie went after him for a divorce settlement she wanted 50% and sued him for $5 million.

          There he was a peace loving old terrorist with nothing in mind but the well being of his people.

          So tell me, Bopo, how your buddy managed to scrape $10 million off the backs of the people he cared for.

          • Private users profile…that figures.

          • Figures what, Tinky Winks?

    • Wells mentions Brimelow in his book[ just getting there] No mention of Northern Foundation in the index though.
      Good to know Harper found a kook like Brimelow an inspiration.

  15. “hey, this is South Africa lady.”

    Worth a chuckle. Jeez, even at Madiba’s funeral the Harper press goons find a way to make him[ and by extension us] the story in a less then flattering way. Sad day for Canada!

    • Could you possibly be more out of touch with reality?

      • Hey, i’ve seen for myself just how pushy his press goons and flunkies can be. It’s you who need to wake up.

        • He’s Harper’s bum boy. Ignore him.

      • I’ve got to say, it seems to me that the people who were out of touch with reality were the two Canadian staffers who attempted to get South African Air Force personnel to segregate the media covering the NELSON MANDELA MEMORIAL by nationality.

        • Somehow i picture you with a semaphore in this instance…wont make a blind bit of difference though.:)

        • The PMO probably phoned the High Commission to order that behaviour.

      • Out of touch? It is a well established and reported-on fact that Harper will not allow any chance of being asked unscripted questions or being photographed without his “Economic Action Plan” or “Keeping Families Safe” or clappers or CPC paraphernalia. The man is scared senseless of having to defend himself on his own two feet without his propaganda machine and backdrops.

  16. Mulcair invited, no Trudeau? Explains why first report out of Africa by our media is to criticize anything PM/aides do.

    • Trudeau gave his seat to Irwin Cotler, due to Cotler’s previous relationship with Mandela. Do try to keep up.

      • This comment was deleted.

        • Harper gets criticised and you do a “leave him alone” tantrum; but Trudeau actually does something selfless (pretty impressive for a party politician, let alone a party leader) and you baselessly smear him.
          I think play time is over and your mum wants you to come in for your bath.

          • Whatever notRick plays in wont wash off with soap and water i’m afraid.

        • Each opposition party was offered a place in the delegation by the PMO. Individuals were not specified.

        • He’d definitely merit his own invite, as did Premier Redford, then it’s Harper we’re talking about here.

          He had to put his big-boy pants on just to invite Chretien and opposition leaders.

        • I think it’s more likely that whoever was doing the invites didn’t see any reason to invite the leader of the 3rd place party.

          Then you’re not giving the Stephen Harper government enough credit. They did indeed offer a seat on the plane to both the NDP and the Liberals. The NDP are (quite properly) sending Mulcair, and the Liberals (again, quite properly, imho) are sending Irwin Cotler, a man who once served as one of Nelson Mandela’s lawyers during the battle to free him from prison.

          I just don’t understand your obsession with Trudeau on this file. It seems to me that sending Irwin Cotler in his place was the right thing to do, and frankly, I rather suspect that if Trudeau had gone himself instead that you’d have found the information on Cotler’s association with Mandela and attacked Trudeau for not sending Cotler in his place.

        • It’s gotta be an act, you can’t honestly be this dense and still have good grammar and spelling.

          • Yes he can apparently.

          • The Discovery Channel oughta do a special.

        • what a douchebag goof – you must have no self respect or dignity whatsoever

          you ass clown

    • Trudeau deferred to scientists.

  17. Meanwhile the PMO’s official stenographer David Akin begs to disagree.

    • He actually links to this board to prove his sardonic assertion that “all of Ottawa” is condemng Montana Brisbin.

      Here I thought were were all commenting trolls and rabble. Turns out we’re the heartbeat of the nations capital.

      • Woo hoo! I’m important to David Akin!

        Hold on…

  18. Why does Alberta’s oil premier get invited?? Oh right. Oil.

      • And she quickly forgot about human rights and Aboriginal rights when she became Premier. Another hypocrite.

  19. What an embarrasement.

  20. These Canadians, acting like some little tinpot dictatorship – S. Africans.

  21. Hahahaha. This thread sounds like you are all parliamentarians – childish and asinine! They are attending a funeral, a solemn farewell to a great statesman. And it should dissolve into petty party squabbling? Canadians all know that the Cons and the LIEberals all take their marching orders from the same multi-national corporations and any attempt at disparity is purely for show. When we collectively wake up and decide to go Iceland on your asses, you will all be denying party affiiliation anyway. I can just imagine you little pencil-necked politicos in a prison with real men. No actually, I cannot

    • When you wish to portray yourself as the only adult on the thread it is probably not a good idea to open with…Hahahaha.

  22. considering the effort harper has been putting in to avoiding being in QP to answer for the crimes perpetuated from his own office, i can’t help thinking that harper whispered an “all right” and quietly pumped his fist as this allows him to not answer questions in QP for another week,,,,

  23. Yawn, another non-story and example how the bar keeps dropping.
    To help the Cdn media get the best possible camera angle, it is very common practice to allocate a camera position for them. It’s a very considerate and professional thing to do. To do this the SA media may have to move slightly. It happens all the time. Any one who has worked in the media knows this, except it seems for Emily Senger and her editors. But hey, don’t let the facts get in the way of a good cheap shot at the PM.

    • Emily Senger, her editors, and the entire media establishment of South Africa and Canada that were there, you mean.

      • a) I doubt the entire media establishment of SA was there. He’s just the PM of Canada after all.
        b) the Cdn press contingent was on the plane
        c) a lone reporter tweeted the action which lacked any context or clarification identifying the “agents”
        d) Emily spun it into a more “interesting” yarn with a catchy title to gain hits

        That’s showbiz!

        • Whatever else you can say about say Chretien, he didn’t embarrass the country by appointing partisan kids to the PMO to do a job like this while on an overseas jaunt or state occasion. Good try, no sale.

          • I really, really don’t care about your partisan politics. You will believe whatever you like. A cheap shot is a cheap shot. Just pointing out a flawed story that leaves out important details, especially re long-standing media support procedures on the ground. Procedures that would have been followed if the PM was a Lib, Con, NDP, Green Bloc, Rhino or Bolshevik.

          • And I’m not interested in the assertions of someone who claims a precedent without evidence. If most of us here are wrong then prove it. Just linking to Atkins at the sun doesn’t quite cut it either, unless he’s dug up something else. Don’t just turn up here making assertions as if that’s all it takes.

    • That is apparently a false quote from Murray Dobbins’ book. Dobbins lists the founders but Harper and Gairdner are not on the list, so some obsessive idiot has added them and keeps posting comments about it.. See Kady’s twitter feed from Dec 10

      Best to condemn Harper for all the crap he really has pulled, rather than a fabricated quote.

  24. My God, how everything is about the media! These self-centred people are beyond belief.

    • I know, but what are you going to do? The PMO is just utterly obsessed with the poor folks.

      • That’s twice as funny when you consider their excuse is -‘ What’s the problem, we did for the media you know!’

      • That must be why he gave poor Irwin Cotler a free plane ride to South Africa for the gangster funeral.

    • They (the media) also have a job to do. And they need room to do it.

  25. In Toronto, we were 10 min. late to PM’s event. (because we have to walk) Waited for 10 min then A lady, asked us to leave asap or she will call the cops. No wonder.

  26. You know if you blockheads would do a little thing called “Google” you would find out right away who this Montana Brisbin is and who she works for.

    Brisbin, Montana, Advance to the Prime Minister

    She is on Facebook as well .

  27. Where is John Turner??

    • Sadly, he is quite frail and probably not healthy enough for the trip (same for George H.W. Bush “41”).

  28. Check your egos at the door. You’re there to honour a man who tried to create equality in a world so unbalanced by self serving corrupt officials and corporations.

  29. On CTV, Mr. Mulroney was shown visiting the media; Mr. Chretien was, too. Only rather than Mr. Harper refer to past Federal government dealings with Mr. Mandela, it was Mr. Mulroney who had to remind the press about his PC Government’s anti-apartheid commitment and it was Mr. Chretien of the Liberals who referred to making Mr. Mandela an Honourary Canadian Citizen. Mr. Harper seemed to barely even remember Ms Campbell’s name…I don’t even think Mr. Harper realized how insulting he was being…

    • Joe Clark went on a separate plane ?

      • He was already in Africa on unrelated business.

  30. What a shame Stephen Harper going to the funeral for a Nelson Mandela who fought human rights violations in South Africa.Stephen Harper is the Prime minister of Human rights violations in his own country.Shame on you Stephen Harper Shame on you.

  31. Stephen Harper is a constant embarrassment to this country.

    He founded an organization that supported apartheid. Ugh. I can’t wait til this hideous bunch of con-artists is turfed from Parliament.

  32. It really is amateur hour in the PMO. We need some new leadership to set a new tone. These assclowns are embarrassing the party.

  33. The Harper régime is just enforcing Harpertheid in South Africa.

  34. Harper continues to embarrass Canada

  35. Des réserves amérindiennes canadiennes aux colonies israéliennes et l’Afrique du Sud

    Martin Lettre – 20 février 2007,

    Le système de mise à l’écart canadien de populations jugées indésirables et isolées dans des réserves a été étudié par des Israéliens en Colombie-Britannique en 1966. Le principe consiste en l’appropriation de terres, suivi du déplacement des populations qui s’y trouvent dans des réserves destinées à cette fin au Canada, dans des bantoustans en Afrique du Sud, ou dans des zones encerclées et dissimulées du regard des Israéliens en Palestine.

    La loi des indiens d’Ottawa n’est non seulement raciste, mais aussi sexiste !

    Est-ce une coïncidence que l’Israël fut un des derniers états à reconnaitre le nouveau gouvernement de Mandela en Afrique du Sud après le régime de l’apartheid ?


    Par Robin Philpot, 2000, V.l.b., ISBN : 9782890057555 (2890057550)

  36. I do not know about the other PMs but harper was part of a whites only group that actively wanted to keep Mandela IN PRISON and saw him as a threat! Hypocrite of the highest order!

  37. Not that I am wishing for it, but it is kind of curious that our Francien has not commented on this thread, especially when there are so many comments about JT she would normally be jumping on.

    In fact I don’t recall seeing any comments from that esteemed source on any of the Mandela coverage in Maclean’s.

    • She’s over at the post defending Jonas’ take, and goodness knows what else. She’s counseling people to go back and read his article more carefully, if you can believe it. The PMO must have reassigned her for this story.