'A specific and important matter requiring urgent consideration' - Macleans.ca

‘A specific and important matter requiring urgent consideration’


Here then is last night’s full discussion, just about five full hours in all. The first hour and a half or so includes Carolyn Bennett (the first speaker, though it’s not entirely clear on Hansard), Michael Ignatieff, Leona Aglukkaq, Jack Layton and some discussion of Luc Malo’s 36th birthday.


‘A specific and important matter requiring urgent consideration’

  1. More stellar, non-partisan, non-biased journalism from the CBC. From Jane Taber:

    Harper PMO sending out an alert to all of its MPs, Senators and staffers urging them not to respond or comment about a news story on CBC's The National last night “in which an employee of Michael Ignatieff's office appears in a ‘street interview' as an ordinary citizen concerned about the supply of H1N1 vaccine.”

    The staffer in question is Mark Sakamoto, formerly a lawyer with the CBC. He is one of Mr. Ignatieff's senior strategists and part of the so-called Toronto gang who have been with him since 2006.

    So the CBC quotes a "man on the street" who turns out to be a former CBC employee now employed in Michael Ignatieff's office? I can't see how the CBC wouldn't have known exactly who he was when they aired this.

    Completely unacceptable. Vince Carlin should be all over this.

    • Well, I always believe in incompetence before conspiracy. Sakamoto used to work at the CBC…no shock there…..so its hardly surprising if the producer spotted him in line or vice versa. Now, should the CBC have identified this guy as working in the OLO, absolutely. Should he have self identified, abolutely (which likely would have eliminated him from the report)

      More sloppy than conspiracy in my opinion. But that's true for all of the participants.

      • Come on Vince. This guy moved from the CBC to be one of the Rosedale gang. If he's that high profile, I can't see how the producer, editor, reporter, Mansbridge…SOMEONE involved in putting this hit piece together didn't know exactly who he was and what he currently does, and remove him from the piece in the name of objectivity and fairness. This goes way beyond sloppy.

        • I am sure the recognized him, thats why he was filmed…familiar face and all. The sloppiness is they dismissed his current job as potnetially causing a conflict. I dont think he was a plant, and it was sloppy. I think it cuts to the discussion about Mackay and his new love. The clubbiness amongst those in power or near power and those in the media is such that they have trouble distinguishing real conflicts….they are all friends, hey I know John, he's a good guy I dont think we are being spun yada yada…..never realizing how it would appear otherwise.

          We both agree its a problem, I just put it down to them not thinking, you are hypothsiizing they planned it….as I said, my default position is incompetnce and laziness rather than the more active conspiracy. Both produce bad results though.

          • Doubt it was planned before they ran into him. Not even surprised that they filmed him. But any of them could have stopped it before it went to air (or at least added disclosure). Naivete doesn't wash here. He's was a CBC lawyer (apparently on leave).

          • Sakamoto is a lawyer and supposedly understands conflicts of interest. He had a choice. He could have refused comment. That would have put an end to it before the CBC even had to make a judgement. Iggy should issue an apology for the bad judgement shown by Sakamoto.

        • Any one who knew including CBC staff, Sakamoto and any OLO staff he told prior to air time had a responsibility to disclose this. Some folks are hoping not to be asked about this today.

    • Her post continues:

      "Mr. Sakamoto and his wife have a newborn. In a note to a colleague, Mr. Sakamoto denied he was a plant: “Not a plant. My wife and I were in line because my 6-week-old baby cannot be vaccinated. Caregivers for parents with children under 6 months are one of the priority groups. That's the sole reason that I was there.”

      • Just because he may have had a legitimate reason to be in the line up does not excuse the CBC for using his contribution in their report.

        • CBC could have – and certainly should have – found another person in line to quote. Agreed. But discounting a person's opinions because of their resume is ludicrous. Partisans are people too…though sometimes, that's admittedly rather difficult to see.

          • Partisans are people, too, but they shouldn't be held up as neutral when they clearly aren't.

    • You're absolutely right. When will the CBC learn to rein in their partisan instincts, like say, CTV does? Why hasn't anybody asked Mike Duffy to impart his wisdom on this matter? Actually, now that I think about it…what ever happened to Duffy's show? Did he get cancelled or wha? ;)

      (actually all snark aside, it is a lapse in judgement, but I think we can put away our tinfoil hats on this one…after all is he saying anything different from the…oh…thousands of others who've expressed their frustration about the vaccination process?)

  2. Thanks for posting this, although I only manages to get through the first page before having to get back to work. Our MPs (of all parties) with a couple of exceptions( Leona Aglukka actually gives answers to questions for example) really appear to be pathetic posturing idiots.

    It doesn't help that this "emergency debate" is a complete waste of time and just an excuse for scoring political points. I am disappointed in the way that the vaccine has been rolled out (although the information about, at least to me, seems to be fine). But it is too early to figure out how to do better next time, and nothing that is said last night is going to do anything to improve the current situation.

  3. A CBC lawyer and Ont gov't media appointee on <a href=" rel=” target=”_blank”>leave to the OLO appearing without disclosure on the CBC. What could possibly go wrong?

    Even if he wasn't thinking straight when he gave the interview he had a few hours to warn both employers. Any CBC staff in the production chain who knew he was was CBC employee on leave to Ignatieff's office should join him.

  4. Listen, Conservatives just want a fair debate. No dirty tricks from the opposition, roll up the sleeves, lets work together. Time for Senator Doug Finley to send out an email…

  5. The google cache link had a character this site doesn't like: "Former Hatter Mark Sakamoto, a 32-year-old Toronto-based lawyer, recently took a leave of absence from his job to become the director of political operations in Ottawa for the leader of the opposition."

    • Nice burqa.

  6. Not to be mean to Luc Malo, or extend any ill wishes — all that birthday wishes crap was inappropriate for an emergency HoC debate on a pandemic flu.

  7. That's a good point. He had no business trying to pass himself off as a neutral observer. At the same time, however, it's hard for me to believe that no one on CBC's end couldn't catch this at any point down the production chain.

    I mean, it smells. I guess the question then becomes: how much does it smell, and is it coming from both ends.

    As a side note, I've never seen an opposition party get caught in its own zeal as often as these Liberals have. It was bad under Dion, and it seems to have gotten worse under Iggy. They better hope that Donolo is the right guy to put an end to this.