Oliver is one of the country’s most experienced and respected television journalists; he should be more than able to draw the Liberal Leader out on issues Canadians care about. Instead, he spends about three-quarters of the 10-minute interview asking and re-asking (a) whether Ignatieff showed weakness in not bringing down the government and (b) whether he’ll bring it down in the fall. Before wrapping up, he eventually gets to a more interesting – if somewhat broad – question about how Ignatieff defines himself. But not once does he ask about a policy issue that goes beyond the EI dispute, let alone attempt to figure out what it is that the Liberals want to do differently from the Conservatives on matters of substance.
This is not exactly the phenomenon Susan Delacourt addressed in the Toronto Star today. But it nevertheless helps prove her point about the role of the media in turning Ottawa into what it’s become.