Political punditry is not journalism

Radio-Canada turns the lens on political has-beens turning to “journalism” by becoming TV pundits:

Coulisses Du Pouvoir Ex Politicien A LaTelevision
Uploaded by mediawatchqc

To their credit, my good friend Laflaque makes fun of the issue better than I could:

Laflaque Le Club Des EX
Uploaded by mediawatchqc

Sheila Copps, Liza Frulla, Michel Gauthier and their ilk say they provide a valuable service, they aren’t attached formally to their parties anymore and can speak their minds, and they can provide unique analysis as former insiders.

But political punditry is the most pathetic form of journalism ever created. It fills airtime with people shouting at each other, debating along party lines, defending their friends and attacking their enemies. Even if they feel they’re free to speak their minds, they’re untrustworthy on their face (especially now that they admit they had to lie while in office).

Another problem, that nobody talks about, is that there’s an assumption among journalists that just because they have ex-members from each of the major parties that they’re fair and balanced. But what about the parties who aren’t represented in the legislature? What about special-interest groups with views that differ from the major parties? They’re unrepresented.

What we need are more political journalists uncovering stories, not political losers killing time yelling at each other about inside politics that nobody cares about.

2 thoughts on “Political punditry is not journalism

  1. DAVE ID

    Anyone who tries at journalism without being a “REAL” journalist really itches your ass doesn’t it?

    Though I cringe when I hear politicians calling themselves journalists merely because they’re on a news show, I think that their commentary can serve purpose, as long as it doesn’t become a three ring circus. I know that listening to Andrew Coyne from the National Post ranting for a few minutes to a faceless blond on The Hour a few years back was horrid and completely ridiculous and he’s a “journalist”. Since we’re talking about that scrap head The Hour, here’s where I really cringe, when The Strombo calls himself a journalist and then calls journalists VeeJays. WTF? When the CBC calls THE HOUR a hour of NEWS… I tremble in fear.


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