Suhana Meharchand v. James Moore -

Suhana Meharchand v. James Moore


This is what happens when someone facing the potential of unemployment is given the opportunity to interview a cabinet minister.

Filed under:

Suhana Meharchand v. James Moore

  1. That was amateur hour.

    If she could not put aside her personal feelings and conduct herself in a professional manner then maybe someone else should have done the interview.

    That reminds me of something I would see on the O’Reilly Factor.

    • Bingo. You hit it on the head. Reactionaries reacting to an end to entitlement. Fox and the CBC are not that different in that they are both so locked into broadcasting from a biais, that they have both deluded themselves that they don’t.

  2. she stated her bias, did a professional interview and kicked his ass.

    • Moore was solid and substantive. Suhana was ridiculous.

    • you call that professional?

    • Professional? She didn’t even hear his succinct reply to the question of asset sales. He had to repeat himself but with fewer syllables. Yeah she really kicked his ass…

    • Suhana seemed professional in the first 45 seconds of the interview. For the rest of the interview she alternated between skepticism, confusion, sarcasm, more confusion, inattentiveness and finally bitterness. At one point, I think she was distracted by frantic gestures of her program director (offscreen).

    • Huh?? Were you watching the same interview? Kicked his ass….hmmm- I think James caught her trying to play gotcha quite a few times, called her on it and she had to back down.

      Funny though, how she would vote Liberal tomorrow all the while agreeing that they were the huge cutting machine for the CBC.

      Kinda strange don’t you think, Cam.

  3. The government should have provided a bridge loan to CBC. James Moore’s rationale that “we don’t know the ad revenue will come back” is bogus.

    • Yeah, that’s true. Funny that she didn’t press him on it. It’s absurd to think that advertisers will abandon television in the medium-term.

    • Ad revenue has been declining for all “old” media, such as TV and newspapers, since the arrival of the internet. It’s a no-brainer that this will continue.

      • Yeah, but the reason the CBC’s hard up these days isn’t the internet, it’s the recession.

        • And the reason the CBC will be really hard up next month is because the Leafs will miss the playoffs

          • Nothing new there.

        • No, it’s a combination of both. Their ad revenue was already falling BEFORE the economy tanked.

          • Not to the tune of $170 million.

      • sf, if the economy recovers and ad revenue doesn’t, that would be an excellent time to have a debate about the role of a public broadcaster. Until then, I don’t see any reason why the government shouldn’t throw the CBC a lifeline to reduce the impact of the recession. If we’re going to have a public broadcaster at all, we may as well provide it with the support it requires.

        • Any lifeline thrown to them is at the expense of others. It is getting the support it requires – but they are asking for more.

    • A bridge loan to nowhere.
      Oh yeah, they would have paid it back fo sho, every cent with interest. Realize something, the CBC doesn’t give back money, they only get money. You would have to reverse Newtonian physics.

      • By definition, any bridge loan to a Crown Corporation would have repayment provisions. Because the CBC is a publicly funded entity, the “bridge loan” would amount to a short-term infusion of cash, followed by a long-term fixed budget reduction (the “payments”).

        • The repayment of the loan presumes CBC will return to a healthy state. Given the paradigm shift in the media this is unlikely. The payments then will come out of their subsidy also known as the taxpayer’s pocket. Thus CBC would have to cannibalize itself to make the payments – an unlikely prospect. Madoff would be proud albeit a smaller ponsi scheme than he is accustomed to.

  4. I would Moore did answer the question decently the first time and the clarification wasn’t necessary.

    On the other hand, the question about the 36 months was a zinger. She should have followed it up with “communications and broadcasting have long been profitable industries in Canada and employ large numbers of people? Is it the government’s opinion that this sector will see a 36 month recession, and will this period be longer than other industries? What is your position on how investors should react to this information?”

    • It really undermined the Governments position that we would come out of this recession quickly.

      • I would agree wholeheartedly except for the possible counterargument that he was making a statement regarding the health only of the broadcasting industry, not the economy overall.

      • It was pretty clear he was referring to just the broadcasting ‘business model’.

        • So the Minister in charge of the Matter just said his industry will be hit harder than everyone else’s, and the government’s plan is to do sweet nuthin about it.

          If I had stock in Rogers I’d be writing angry letters.

          • If you were a Rogers stock holder what would u suggest to complain over – that u too should receive taxpayer funding? Or perhaps over the inequity of having to compete with a subsidized broadcaster?

            Government is not the answer to everything. Businesses rise businesses fall, subsidized businesses fall the fastest. Best not to throw good money after bad. For the record I’m against bail outs period, automotive and otherwise.

            Correct me if I’m wrong but isn’t CBC market share something in the order of a paltry 8%?

          • They might not be the answer to everything but they don’t have to have ministers going around making off the cuff remarks that a particular industry is a really bad investment.

    • Umm, why would ad revenue be the same if more people (including myself) watch shows online and I/we block out ads? The economy can recover in 36 months but that doesn’t mean your ad revenue will be the same if you don’t change with the market.

  5. Usually I find her a little over-caffeinated but she was okay today and was clearly getting under Moore’s skin.

    I thought his comment that she should support the Conservatives and convince people in her private life to so also was out of bounds. Suhana’s husband is Toronto City Councillor and former journalist, Adam Vaughan. He isn’t an official member of Mayor Miller’s team but tends to side with them more than not.

    • “I thought his comment that she should support the Conservatives and convince people in her private life to so also was out of bounds.”

      I found that the interesting part of the interview as well. Was he trying to say that if the CBC supported the cons more they would get better funding?? It came off that way to me. If he was only trying to say ‘she’ should support the cons, and convince her friends to, I would still find that stepping over the line.

      “Usually I find her a little over-caffeinated but she was okay today and was clearly getting under Moore’s skin.”

      I agree, I always find her a bit on the quirky side of things, but she handled this interview well.

      • Was he trying to say that if the CBC supported the cons more they would get better funding??

        If the CBC approached a position of even neutrality they’d get better funding.

    • I must have seen a different interview. I rarely watch CBC so it appeared to me that she was uber caffeinated. Moore by contrast seemed cool, calm and in possession of the facts.

  6. Suhanna spanked Moore, and I for one enjoyed seeing a journalist take off that mask of what passes for cool professionalism and instead show that the story means a lot to her. She did a great job — and showed a good reason why we need to ensure CBC doesn’t disappear in budget cuts.

  7. I thought James Moore was really good! How come I haven’t heard more about this guy (apart from my own general ignorance)? Articulate, substantive, on his brief, and not at all intimidated by the interviewer. Nice job.

    • Yeah, Jack … and he’s really hot in Quebec.

      • Well, I’d never heard of him before, so my opinion is only based on this interview.

    • And yet, in Quebec, not so much:

      It is hard to think of a Conservative minister who is more of a francophile than James Moore. Among Harper’s English-speaking ministers, only he is proficient enough in French to dare go on Radio-Canada’s most watched talk show, Tout le monde en parle.

      But a culturally clueless heritage minister does not come across as less ignorant for being able to exhibit that trait in a second language.

      Many commentators would have cut Moore slack for failing to come up with the names of Peter Mansbridge’s Radio-Canada’s equivalent, Céline Galipeau, or even the iconic Félix Leclerc, but to be unable to identify Atom Egoyan, who is perhaps Canada’s most celebrated English-language filmmaker, does not wear well on the minister in charge of Canada’s cultural policy.

      Moore set out to rebuild the government’s election-battered bridges with the cultural community, but ended up consolidating some long-held prejudices about the Conservatives.

      Chantal Hebert, Toronto Star, Monday, March 23.

      • Well, maybe he shouldn’t be Heritage Minister, or he should read his briefs, or something. At least he shouldn’t go on TLMP.

    • I agree he is intelligent and articulate. Its unfortunate he’s become hyper partisan in recent years. He used to be a really good MP. I say that as a constituent. Unfortunately these days he doesn’t feel it nessesary to return emails, or even respond to invitations to events to do with his portfolio in his own riding. Sadly not even a form letter in sight. However I do still get his mail outs telling me how great he is.

      • Maybe it’s because he doesn’t know where his riding is? How many years since they changed the boundaries and his office is still in my riding!?! I’d agree with you about his former reputation, that he was seen as capable and diligent but is now just another one of their guttersnip, partisan pitchmen who’d rather lie than be even-handed. His smear of the Surrey reporter finished it for me.

        • That was the day I lost faith in him.

          • Oh, he’s that guy? Oh, damn. I guess you can’t have youth, communication skills, a CPC membership card, and ethics.

  8. Jack Jack Jack!
    Suhanna’s strength is that she phrases questions in a way Joe Canuck can understand!
    Moore’s responses – were bafflegab – which is why she asked him repeatedly for clarifications – as would I have.
    Moore dug himself a hole.
    He could have answered those questions simply, clearly and headed off all this.
    Doesn’t seem that the Harper government has let itself get too ideologically sidetracked…except…
    Well – they didn’t go around gobbling up every little ma and pa operation in every branch of media – like the commerical operations did they? Or get themselves overextended in their borrowings either – did they?
    Or find it impossible to come up with an effective integrated cross-media model either did they?
    So – I guess I’m a little puzzled why Moore would try and link the public business model with the private sector one? Hm….
    And as for refusing bridging loans – Hm – they are chucking money at banks and the auto industry – those are kind of bridging loans aren’t they?
    Hm – now I’m confused. Think I’ll go ask Suhanna to explain it to me!

    • Sorry, I always forget to specify if I’m admiring something cynically or idealistically.

      Bafflegab is the order of the day, no, when you’ve got it in for the CBC and trying not to have to explain the fact to CBC viewers?

      It could be that, in the Goodyear Era, my standards for ministerial self-presentation have slipped, but at least his answers were better than what you’d get in QP.

      • “…but at least his answers were better than what you’d get in QP.”
        Well – closer to answers to the question posed – I’ll grant you!
        Its almost as if he didn’t attend the Van Loan School of Obfuscation and Avoidance!

      • Anything is better than what you’d get in QP.

      • Jack give us a sarcasm alert or a wink or something wouldya?

  9. Was quite enjoyable to watch James Moore squirm….and to hear Suhana catch him on his (and the Conservatives) inconsistencies.

  10. He is correct, Moore.

    The media is changing all the time. There is no guarantee that ad financing will ever return to former levels.

    While the CBC revenue is going down, so is the government’s, and so is everyone else’s.

    Why on earth should the CBC be the only organization immune to the downturn? A bridge loan, at a moment when the government has just returned to deficits? The nerve.

    • The CBC still would have suffered and laid people off, even with a bridge loan. The bridge loan would have cushioned the impact so that the CBC could make their cuts with a scalpel, rather than a chainsaw.

      • Wow, you sure bought into their “oh woe is me” spin. Cry me a river.

        • I am sympathetic to the plight of the hundreds of employees who are about to be laid off. I’m sure that some of them are deadwood, but I’m equally sure that many talented and hard-working people are about to lose their jobs, and their absence will be detrimental to the CBC.

          • They make television for a living! They get free revenue from the government (unlike their competitors), and while the rest of the economy, including almost every other industry is being hit with layoffs, they think they should be given a free pass.

  11. I think Moore handled himself very well. He didn’t lose his cool which is more than Meharchand can claim.

    It’s not the job of the interviewer to make things comfortable for politicians, however; it is there job to act professionally.

    Her emotions will be the main focal point instead of the layoffs at the CBC. She made herself the story, which in my opinion is the worst thing an interviewer can do.

    Maybe I’ve been spoiled from watching Paikin on TVO all these years.

    There is a journalist who is a first rate professional.

    • I agree, and I suggested the same, I suggested that based on that excuse for an interview, Meharchand should have been one of the first candidates for layoffs. Somehow my comment was deleted. I guess she has friends at Maclean’s.

      • If Moore can be the face of the Cadman Affair he can withstand some uncomfortable moments with the CBC.

        That reminds me, there is still the question of just who exactly were the two BC Harper party people who visited Cadman.

        Perhaps Moore knows for sure. Other people know too. Moore is certainly substantial, perhaps even pliable, definitely saying what he’s told to say even when he of all people know it is untrue: e.g., the founding of Canada’s public broadcaster. Why?

        • Moore had no problem with that interview, there was nothing difficult out it, in part because Meharchand made it about herself. She let him off the hook, and he ran with it, it was a fine performance by Moore. Meharchand showed that she is incapable of remaining professional when she needs to be.

  12. Moore rocked that interview. He is one of the strongest ministers, period.

    • Sadly, you’re probably right about his ranking as a minister.

    • He certainly has the biggest lungs of any Minister. He is the master of the run-on sentence and the continual repetition of talking points. If that makes Moore one of the best than God help the CLOWNservatives.

  13. Like Suhana, I sometimes get ‘confused’…Moore’s message today is that despite the fact that this government maintains that the the economy willl recover this year or next, this government won’t support the CBC with bridge funding because ad revenues may not recover for 36 months. I guess I’d better support the Conservatives since they seem to be the only ones who understand the message.

  14. Wow. I don’t know who’s more annoying.

    She’s waving her hands in the air, putting on her glasses, taking off her glasses; declares she doesn’t want to sound whiny then proceeds to sound whiny. Meanwhile, Moore is in full Campaign 2004 mode, attacking Liberals for their cuts to the CBC. “Tell all your friends to vote Conservative!” Is he for real??

    …Entertaining though..

    • If the Conservatives had a majority they would privatize the CBC within the first 6 months!!!!!
      Mark my words, this would happen if they won a majority governement. Which thanks to Québec, probably won’t happen for another 10 years. Youppi.

  15. So a journalist has their job on the line and gets to interview a politician. 99% of the time it’s the other way around, and nobody has any sympathy for the politician.

    • Good point.

  16. One person was calm, honest and substantive. One person was an erratic and ridiculous.
    Moore owned Suhana. He was near flawless, she was pathetic.

  17. She’s calling out the governement, she has the right to do it!

    All Moore ever does is speaks faster and uses the same words over and over to try and appear smart. Brutal.

  18. Well, I might have preferred Moore telling her “you overly-entitled whiny babies had better get used to even deeper cuts than the Liberals did because the taxpayer doesn’t owe you personally a freaking DIME!” But that’s just me. In the real-world Canadian political context, he did fine, if the audience would remove their partisan blinders. She was whiny and shrill and did journalism no favours, but most in the audience will likely forgive her in the context of her actually being part of the story.

    • That is when you can distinguish the true professionals.

  19. Wow… I don’t know how many people watch Meharchand on a regular basis, but this interview was fairly typical. She has a bit of sass, allows things to come to their natural conclusion, and doesn’t mind admitting when she misunderstood something. She did waste time because of her misunderstanding though — too bad.

    I enjoy it when she’s a bit more combative during interviews, and I enjoyed this one as well.

    James Moore was quite articulate in the interview and I think did quite well, with the solid exception of the EXTREMELY old “the Liberals were worse” rhetoric. Take that away, and I’d have to say he was quite good.

    Speaking of which: Maybe my mind is failing me, but I don’t remember the Ontario PC party going on for years, at every available opportunity, pointing out once they won that things under David Peterson was so much worse. I would chalk it up to being in a minority situation, but this is now venturing on ridiculous. In debates on specific matters it makes sense bringing up the record of the opposition to minimize their ability to speak with authority or to put proof to a lie, but bringing it up in every one-on-one interview, in every speech, in every answer to every question is just really, really tiresome.