Dr. Dawg

Spinning madly

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That would be the Media Party, faced with polls showing substantial support for #IdleNoMore. Michael Harris pointed out some oddities a few days ago when an Ipsos-Reid poll on the movement came out:

It is interesting to note that, in Postmedia’s story featuring the Ipsos-Reid poll, the findings are laid out exactly as the PMO has laid out the government’s policies.

The lead of the piece says that Canadians don’t want more money sent to reserves without proper audits and financial accountability. It goes on to state that only 33 per cent of Canadians think the money is being well-managed by native leaders.

…Buried toward the end of the Postmedia story is a fact that arguably should have been the lead: Only 27 per cent of Canadians think the Harper government is being fair and reasonable on First Nations issues. Which means 73 per cent think otherwise.

And here is another number toward the bottom of the story — 63 per cent of Canadians think Ottawa should act to raise the quality of life for aboriginals. Quite a different impression than the one created by the lead — that Canadians are sick of forking over their hard-earned moolah to casino-struck SUV owners posing as Indian chiefs.

Indeed. Now a new poll has appeared, and here is the considerable english the National Post put on it:

Nearly half of Canadians say they do not support the Idle No More movement and more than half of those with First Nations ancestry share the sentiment, a new poll suggests.

A poll conducted by Forum Research for the National Post found that among those Canadians who were aware of the grassroots movement, 49% said they did not support it. Just 39% of those surveyed said they supported Idle No More, and 12% said they didn’t know.

…Among those Canadians surveyed who say they have First Nations ancestry, 52% said they did not support Idle No More, the poll showed.

The finding was surprising, [Lorne Bozinoff, President of Forum] said.

“The First Nations individuals they surveyed, they seem to [have] very similar [views] to the Canadian population in general,” he said.

Imagine that. They get their well-spun information from the same media, and are just as affected as anyone else. What a surprise.

But here’s what the polls actually reveal. Keep in mind that Canadians don’t tend to warm up to protest movements that put people in the streets and behind barricades. As well, the Idle No More protests have torn the lid off a virulent streak of racism in this country, ranging from the genteel finger-wagging of pundits eager to instruct the dumb Injuns, to the white-supremacist opinions to be found in various online media threads.

And yet.

In a few short weeks, nearly four out of ten Canadians support the movement. And that support has held, despite all the flashmobs and the blockades.

The comprador media and their hired pollsters keep flailing. “[The protesters] do have some level of sympathy among the Canadian population, but not for the things they are actually doing, such as the blockades,” [Bozinoff] said. “And if they do more of those things it could erode the support for their goals.”

There’s always a “could,” signifying the ongoing campaign by the Media Party to create a self-fulfilling prophecy. So far it has had some success, smearing Chief Spence to considerable effect and spinning the Deloitte audit away from the major problems with financial accountability that it found in Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada.

Yet despite all this, Idle No More has attracted and kept rapid, unprecedented support in the general population. That’s not spin: it’s fact, but you’ll never see that in the corporate media ledes.

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This page contains a single entry by Dr. Dawg published on January 21, 2013 1:42 PM.

Idle thoughts: the gendering of Aboriginal protest was the previous entry in this blog.

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