Author: Roger

The Star’s Political Principles

The Star’s Political Principles

Will John Tory’s ‘prudent’ leadership be tough enough to tackle Toronto’s big issues if he’s re-elected?

John Tory’s leadership has been described as the epitome of conservative values: strong on fiscal discipline, focused on the middle class, and tough on crime. And yet, that’s not what the Star and elsewhere in the media have been writing about at all. We’re being told — and I’m quoting from a Star reporter, again — that Tory is “just a one-trick pony,” who “wants to cut taxes and balance the budget.”

As the provincial election campaign gathers to its final week, the Toronto Star is going to be asking itself a question: where are its principles, and where are its reporters’ ‘principles’?

Let’s review:

As we discussed last summer, the most important political principle of Toronto’s journalists is: “We have to look for truth,” which is why we’re willing to spend weeks tracking down missing people. “We have to report on the story,” which is why we’ll never use the word “rape.” “We have to look for the truth,” which is why we’ll NEVER make jokes about sex with children.

As political journalists, we have no such commitments. Our primary obligation is to deliver stories that help our readers stay informed, and then do our best to persuade the electorate to vote as we recommend, not as they might prefer.

That’s why the Star, as a newspaper generally supportive of the Conservative party, can publish editorials that are pro-policies that are not necessarily pro-Conservative policies — and then have no qualms in calling the Conservatives “the party of fiscal discipline,” “the party of middle-class values,” and “the party that’s tough on crime.”

That’s why, when the Star’s former chief editor, Rob Ferguson, was removed from his job early this year because he refused to stop using the n-word in reference to black people, the Star itself — and

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