Questions “Toronto Star” editor Michael Cooke ignored

This morning, Star editor Michael Cooke had a live Q & A internet chat on the papers website. Over the course of an hour, I asked ten questions. Mr. Cooke chose to ignore all of them. Here are my questions:

  • By what criteria do you, as an editor, determine how to assign coverage to certain stories over others? Isn’t the Rob Ford story (while obviously important) ultimately less politically/democratically important than the CSEC scandal?
  • Have you made any attempt to reach out to Glenn Greenwald or his affiliates to review the NSA documents leaked by Edward Snowden that pertain to Canada? Why do we have to find out about Canadian surveillance abuses in Brazilian papers?
  • What distinctions do you make between Justin Trudeau’s recent admissions to smoking pot while an MP? W/r/t drug policy, aren’t these simply matters of degree?
  • Kathy English apologized publicly for the racist slant of the “Star’s” articles early in the Ford story. Nevertheless, the emblematic photograph of Ford with the two unidentified black men is, in the words of Robyn Doolittle, unconnected to the video. Isn’t publishing it, then, still tacitly racist?
  • Why as the Star opted to remain silent on the fact that Barrick Gold is not only refusing to give restitution to the hundreds of women gang-raped at its Papua New Guinea mine, but also that has defied the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights by so doing?
  • Why has the Star not investigated into the mysterious dismissal of Extractive Sector CSR Counsellor Marketa Evans?
  • How does directing questioner Carlos Alfaro to the Atkinson Principles address his fair comment w/r/t the Star’s coverage of Ford story versus other worthwhile political news stories?
  • Which, in your view, is a more important story from a political, cultural, economic, perspective: that the Canadian government was spying on foreign governments to give intelligence to the private sector (how’s that for Atkinson Principles), or Rob Ford’s drug problem?
  • What quantifiable damage does “international embarrassment” cause to Toronto? Specific examples would be great.
  • Have there been any specific instances where the Ford story has damaged Toronto’s economic/political standing?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *