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Carol Off
This season counterSpin welcomes the return of Carol Off as the host of CBC Newsworld's flagship debate show.
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Credits

Host
Carol Off

Guest Host
Adrian Harewood

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Paul Jay

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Pedro Sanchez

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Colman Jones

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Audrey Huntley

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Joe Keenan

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Rebeka Tabobondung

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Don Reynolds






Program Archive
The State of Democracy
Wednesday, May 12, 2004.
In the shadow of war, big government and corporate power, what’s become of democracy?

counterSpin, the FINAL edition

Watch this episode Online! Part One, Two, Three, Four, in rm format.

 

 
The State of Democracy
Wednesday, May 12, 2004.
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What Became of Democracy?
by Sal Greco on Friday May 07, @02:32PM (#6120)
User #1865 Info
Democracy is still possible in Canada, but I'm afraid that many people in positions of power have tried to sell us Capitalism and Consumerism in it's place.
Capitalism is based on capital (money) and not based on "people" as the most important element of a society. When we're told that the way we best exercise our freedom is by deciding which products we should buy, I'm afraid that's far too limited for me. I'd like to be assured that I can live a good, wholesome and healthy life without fear of being taken advantage of by people who should look upon me as a potential friend, and not as a monetary unit who can be taken advantage of. Capitalism (which we so often are encouraged to confuse with democracy) is far too much based on making a living based on profits obtained when services and products are sold at levels beyond their worth. At it's worst, Capitalism thrives when economic markets exercise a kind of extortion over the consumers. When businesses lobby to control the price, quality and availability of goods and services, the consumer (the citizen) is directly at their mercy and the quality of his or her life is greatly affected.
When our lives, instead, are based on a mutual respect for one another's value as human beings, regardless of any perceived or actual deficiencies (differences), then we will have a more equitable and wholesome society. (For me, this is a kind of Humanism).
I urge each every one of you to make this society answerable to the letter of it's own laws, by holding politicians, business people and everyone else accountable to even the most powerless people among us, and not help them with our silence or active support.
Democracy is the practice of being able to make a statement like the one I've made, and being able to get it discussed in a national forum like counterSpin. Don't take counterSpin away from us. If you do, you will have limited some of my democratic potential.
Thanks for what you have given us, but at the same time, realize that it is some of the dignity you owe us, because we are human beings and citizens of this country, Canada.
-Sal Greco
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
democracy
by ed_twardoz on Friday May 07, @02:53PM (#6124)
User #1838 Info
In Canada democracy is slowley being eroded and taken over by soicialism. Hey...maybe you guys should think about becoming a Republic like the U.S.

GOD BLESS AMERICA
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
The difference between Deomcracy and Dictatorship
by Bob10 on Sunday May 09, @07:23AM (#6143)
User #1977 Info
In dictatorship including socialism and communism they would not let you talk. In today western style democracy you are free to talk but none would listen to you!

I cannot see any difference between the two, can you? If yes, what is it?
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
cancellation of counterspin
by sarte on Sunday May 09, @08:36AM (#6148)
User #1690 Info
What does the cancellation of counterspin say about the state of democracy? I don't want to be overly melodramatic, but in a small way I think its cancellation is a set back to those of us who want to be informed.

Counterspin is one of very few shows I find interesting and informative.
 
There are not too many shows feature subtantial debates on a variety of issues among guests with radically different opinions on issues of the day. In addition, memebers of the audience have the opportunity to take the experts on the panel to task.

Often the featured topics and guests are not the usual fare you hear and seee on the main stream media. Though, with Carol off the show appears to have lost a lot of its edges. For example, hard hitting critics of Israellike Norman Finkeltein and Robert Fisk were never featured on Carol's show if I recall correctly. Instead we halways have more middle of the road people like Hussein Ibbish.

Overall,Counterspin is a very unique show in spite of it shortcomings.

I wonder what are they going to replace counterspin with. Please not one of those respectible,--read boring, stuffy,-- politically correct Peter Mansbridge presents. You wonder why young people are losing interest in the CBC.

[ Reply to This | Parent ]
To: Ed and his Followers and Belivers -- VS......
by Joy101 on Sunday May 09, @07:08PM (#6156)
User #1939 Info
OK, I am going to take up some space here on a new thread --- I read here and there and take in (message boards are really a great education) and I’d like to address --- Ed and his believers --- Ed, you have once or more said that you are an American living in Canada --- I don’t know WHY or how long you have lived here but it seems apparent to me that it has not been long --- AS, first, you show you have not one Canadian value and 2nd you have not one ounce of patriotism, no I like the word “nationalism” much better, about CANADA (even with it’s many attributes and faults) OR you are an American born, raised and living there now !!! Which and what is it with you ???

Do you realize that you are also mocking at “least” 1/2 of your fellow US citizens who have said the same things or worse about Bush and his cartel and US FOREIGN and domestic policies – these being the true brave and free !!!! Think about what THEY see, that YOU (plus) don’t AND they are just as US proud and rightly so !!!!???

It is one of the main reasons I have always admired US citizens, TRULY, TRULY --- they always stood together and/or at least “allowed” dissent but in the end always realized their common ground/goal and fought for change -- loudly – ie. mutual respect !!! I TRULY never thought I’d see the day when “fellow Americans” actually attacked (screams of non-patriotism, etc….) perhaps even hate “each other” and then the rest of the world !!! This, I believe, is what Bush started and wanted, actually WANTS ---- feelings of superiority, etc….

As you know, Bush IS very clear about his “staying the course” but he and his gang/PR, KNOW they are ONLY “preaching” to his “followers” -- think tactics, motives !!!!! I DO admire your patriotism but it is a CRITICAL time, a time to look at your country objectively as, like I said, at least ½ of your FELLOW CITIZENS have done and to which I say thank you VERY much !!! I’m sorry but, logically, ethically, humanitarianly you simply can NOT be right in believing that FORCE is the only answer !!!

And please don’t ask me what Canadian values are or say the other guy is worse or they won’t listen….. !!!!!!!!!!!!! You are a busy man on these boards, take a breather and please realize it is NOT, NOT, NOT , US BASHING --- that I and ½ of your fellow citizens and a LOT of the rest of the WORLD (I believe it is obvious) --- TRULY have the world’s, including the US’ itself, best interests at heart !!! Breathe !!!
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
COUNTERSPIN WAS THE ANATHEMA OF DEMOCRACY!!!
by libertad on Sunday May 09, @10:51PM (#6166)
User #1575 Info
Why should Counterspin be cancel??? Because it was not a neutral program! It took sides. It is no coincidence that the people complaining about the shows cancellation, coincide with Countersinks ideology. But you people have to understand that CBC is a public funded Canadian Broadcast Corporation! That means that all Canadians are paying for their programs. They must be neutral. It doesn’t matter if you subjectively believe that anyone attacking a government, country, organization and so on that you hate is “informing” What matters is that they are not delivering the audience a story and letting them decide who is right or wrong. What they are doing is manipulating so the public will end up believing what the producers wants them to believe. Besides the point that this is not journalism on top of that they were using our tax money. If you add to all of this that 90% of the programs had nothing to do with Canadian issues, the conclusion is that Counterspin was a total fiasco!
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
Democracy? Religion will the real underlying issue
by Sean357 on Thursday May 13, @02:20AM (#6293)
User #2005 Info
What has not been remarked apon is the fact that since Hussein's deposal, the Ayotollah(sp?) of Iraq is back. He is the exact same level of clerical authrority as the Ayotollah of Iran. If we could all take a moment and recall 400+ American hostages taken back in 1979. Good, now that you have that in mind, think what a hotbed of fundamentalism Iraq will become. Hizbollah and Hamas will have a ton of fresh recruits to choose from the kurds, Shia's, Sunni's and many other relgious sects and ethnic communities in Iraq. How is this a good thing? ... Well, it isn't. When the U.S. captured Hussein, they effectively destroyed the only secular power base within that volatile region. To give you a quick example, secular in that women held jobs like teachers, Doctors, laywers, and government office jobs. They could go shopping for food for their families without the need of a male relative escorting them. Unlike currently in Saudi Arabia or Afghanistan under the Taliban.

The destruction of the last real secular govt in the region heralds the arrival of a darker, less tolerant, more militant society. It not only bodes ill for the citizens of Iraq, but also for her neighbours and indeed the rest of the world.

Now before someone rants at me about what a scumbag Hussein was, I agree entirely. He was exactly what the U.S State Dept made him out to be and he did his job very well back in the 80s, keeping Iran occupied, in this instance. Others also worked out well for awhile, for the U.S. people like Manuel Noriega. And the Shah of Iran. And Osama Bin Laden. Lovely pattern here actually... America makes these creeps, turns them loose and then gets mad when they bite masters hands.

Food for thought, gang.

[ Reply to This | Parent ]
Come on Left wingers
by katie_lynn on Thursday May 13, @01:55PM (#6311)
User #2008 Info
First of all let me preface this by saying that I am a card carrying democrat and a bleeding heart liberal (A title I proudly proclaim regardless of what the right thinks of me).

I must say that after reading this thread I am very concerned with the lack of intelligent discourse on the part of my fellow liberals. It seems that this 1 character ed_twardoz is taking on about 8 or 9 of you guys and he is handing you your asses. I might have to spend a little more time on here and show you guys a thing or two about debating. Derk, ed_twardoz is right, you do need to identify your sources and back up your claims. You are looking rather foolish. JoJo you seem to just say the same thing over and over and over again. Sarte, I dont even take you seriously and your arguments are very simplistic. Average Canadian, I must say that your debating skills are average at best. I could go on but I have a paper to finish. I will come back and show you how to take on ed_twardoz
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
What's Become of Democracy?
by Bo on Thursday May 13, @04:16PM (#6315)
User #2006 Info
I'm not saying that many Americans and Americanized Canadians are rather hypocritical and/or ignorant,but your rightwing guests from the National Post and the Washington think tank seem to be unaware of the difference between humanitarianism and imperialist wars of conquest, occupation, plunder and torture. Furthermore, they seem to be unconscious of the meaning of the word, "democracy".
          These gaps between rhetoric and reality are what constitute the historical traditional American Nightmare, as the US becomes increasingly undemocratic.
    I'm not saying that deposing Saddam Hussein wasn't a good thing, but there is no evidence to suggest that George W Bush, Donald Rumsfield and Company are benevolent compassionate humanitarians searching the planet for oppressed people to liberate.
    I'm not saying George Dubya is a bad guy, but he gives me the impression if he were a dentist, he would give his patient a root canal first, and ask questions later.
      If Mr. Bush were a defense attorney, he would prosecute for murder first, and ask questions later.
        And if Mr. Bush were a psychiatrist treating a patient for depression, he'd perform a lobotomy first, sell the patient freedom later, and then ask him how he'd like his democracy - with freedom fries or without?
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
one thing i won't miss about counterspin...
by jakemadison on Sunday May 16, @06:03PM (#6387)
User #1788 Info
the forums.

for example:

i am better than everyone. i am sooooooooo smart. i'm the only one who knows what really going on. your stupidity amuses me. you pathetic loser.
and C.

jm.
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
Ed: The man who avoids questions he doesn't like
by jojo on Monday May 17, @09:46AM (#6393)
User #1677 Info
Hey Ed,

Readers must be wondering why you are not answering the extremely easy questions that I've asked you about Hertzl and the role of anti-semitism in fueling zionism.

Also, you have yet to tell me where in Egypt you've been. I'm still waiting for details.

Also, Where was your outrage about the video with the US soldiers killing a wounded iraqi in broad daylight and then expressing satisfaction? Where was the outcry from the US public? Why don't you apply the same standard on US people as you apply on Arab people?

While at it, where was the outrage of the US public at the killing of Rachel Corrie? And why is that to this day, the US as done jack shit about getting justice for this killing? (You'll have to handle this one too, since Crammed doesn't debate with people who know the truth...)
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
Ed's confusastically illogicalisism
by jojo on Monday May 17, @08:20PM (#6408)
User #1677 Info
She wnet over of her own free will. Isreal held the people who drove the bulldozer responsible. What would you like us to do...drop a bombs all over Isreal. Actually you probably would. what is being down about the pigs who sawed off Bergs head...once again jojo...nothing.


Hold on here. Are you saying that we should blame Rachel for being killed? (according to that logic, you then blame Berg for being killed...)

As for the driver of the bulldozer, I've never heard about him being held nor tried.

What the US could do is diplomatically force Israel to investigate. The UK has done just that wrt to Tom Hurndall... albeit after a LOT of effort from Tom Hurndall's familly within the UK.

As for Berg, one major issue is figuring out who did this. But then again, you have bitten your tail. You were bitching about the lack of outrage in the arab world wrt Berg. It's only then that I pointed out that US has shown no outrage for the death of Rachel Corrie, nor was there wrt to the soldiers that killed a wounded iraqi and felt good about it. In other words, this is about you being selectively outraged. I didn't start the debate about outrage.

I have a minor in Islamic studies, I have been studying about the arab world since 9/11. And I believe i answered #2. You just did not like my answer. here it is again "But...if the answer to #2 is Yes...then we can safely assume then...according to your logic of root causes....that it was anti semitism that led to the suffering of the Palastinian people and no zionism. See JoJo..if you believe that is the case then that means that the root cause of the palastinian suffereing is thier own racism.


You did not answer #2. You said "if the answer to #2 is yes..." You didn't give me your answer. I told you to give me your answer, and in due time I will adress the anti-semitism->zionism->Israel-Palestine conflict link you point out... although if you read what I post, you'd know that I've time and again explained that, and I've been quite logical. So, why don't you answer #2? "if the answer is" is not an answer...

As to # 3 I dont know if the HO influened him...i have not see it stated anywhere that it has.


Obviously, you haven't read my question... #3 is not about whether the Holocaust influenced Hertzl. Why don't you first read the question rather than guess what the question is. My question was quite simple. You just need to read it.

JOJO..i have been to Egypt I worked with an underground missions teams...if I was making this up then could I not pick a couple of cities off a map and say thats where I was...could I not say I visited the pyrimids...personally i could care less if you believe me or not...i shall sleep well tonight anyways.


Hmmm, well, once I know where you've been, then I can possibly ask you questions whose answers are not easily found on a map...

And if nothing else, I'm currious about the nature of your "missions".

We are paying for it..get your facts straight.


Well, technically, you are not paying for what goes on in Iraq if you live in Canada, because then you are not paying tax to the US government. Likewise, my friend - a Canadian - that lives in the US is paying for it. So it is true that the US taxpayers are having their tax money transferred to a few US corporations via contracts for Iraq.

BTW, do you know where the Iraqi oil money is kept? I hear it's kept in the US.

Uhh shouldnt the country be stabel before we just up and leave....it is not too long before we hand over power. What is the problem with waiting a few more months?????


Well, there's a catch 22. It's unstable because the US is there... and the vast majority of Iraqis want the US out.

Also, more importantly, could you please explain to us what power the US will be handin

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[ Reply to This | Parent ]
TO jojo THE PALESTINIAN PROPAGANDA ADVOCATE
by PENSER on Wednesday May 19, @01:16PM (#6425)
User #2014 Info
For those who don't know, Dennis Miller is a
comedian who has a show called Dennis Miller Live on HBO. He is not Jewish. He recently went on a rant about the Mideast situation:

"A brief overview of the situation is always
valuable, so as a service to all American(Canadians) who still don't get it, I now offer you the story of the Middle East in just a few paragraphs, which is all you really need.

Here we go:
The Palestinians want their own country. There's
      just one thing about that: There are no
      Palestinians. It's a made up word. Israel was called Palestine for two thousand years. Like "Wiccan,"
"Palestinian" sounds ancient but is really a modern invention. Before the Israelis won the land in the 1967 war, Gaza was owned by Egypt, the West Bank was owned by Jordan, and there were no "Palestinians."

As soon as the Jews took over and started growing
oranges as big as basketballs, what do you know, say hello to the Palestinians," weeping for their deep bond with their lost "land" and "nation."
So for the sake of honesty, let's not use the word "Palestinian" any more to describe these delightful folks, who dance for joy at our deaths until someone points out they're being taped.

Instead, let's call them what they are: "Other Arabs Who Can't Accomplish Anything In Life And Would Rather Wrap Themselves In The Seductive Melodrama Of Eternal Struggle And Death."

I know that's a bit unwieldy to expect to see on
CNN. How about this, then: "Adjacent Jew-Haters."
Okay, so the Adjacent Jew-Haters want their own
country. Oops, just one more thing. No, they don't.

They could've had their own country any time in the last thirty years, especially two years ago at Camp David. But if you have your own country, you have to have traffic lights and garbage trucks and Chambers of Commerce, and, worse, you actually have to figure out some way to make a living.
That's no fun. No, they want what all the other
Jew-Haters in the region want: Israel. They also
want a big pile of dead Jews, of course --that's
where the real fun is -- but mostly they want
Israel.
Why? For one thing, trying to destroy Israel - or
"The Zionist Entity" as their textbooks call it -- for the last fifty years has allowed the rulers of Arab countries to divert the attention of their own people away from the fact that they're the blue-ribbon most illiterate, poorest, and tribally backward on God's Earth, and if you've ever been around God's Earth, you know that's really saying something.

It makes me roll my eyes every time one of our
pundits waxes poetic about the great history and
culture of the Muslim Mideast. Unless I'm missing
something, the Arabs haven't given anything to the world since Algebra, and, by the way, thanks a hell of a lot for that one.

Chew this around and spit it out: Five hundred
million Arabs; five Million Jews. Think of all the Arab countries as a football field, and Israel as a
pack of matches sitting in the middle of it. And now these same folks swear that if Israel gives them half of that pack of matches, Everyone will be pals.
Really? Wow, what neat news. Hey, but what about the string of wars to obliterate the tiny country and the constant din of rabid blood oaths to drive every Jew into the sea? Oh, that? We were just kidding.

My friend Kevin Rooney made a gorgeous point the
other day: Just reverse the Numbers. Imagine five
hundred million Jews and five million Arabs. I was stunned at the simple brilliance of it. Can anyone picture the Jews strapping belts of razor blades and dynamite to themselves? Of course not. Or marshaling every fiber and force at their disposal for generations to drive a tiny Arab State into the sea? Nonsense. Or dancing for joy at the murder of innocents? Impossible. Orspreading and believing horrible lies about the Arabs baking their bread with the blood of children? Disgusting. No, as you know, left to t

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