680News political affairs specialist John Stall on politics.See more blogs
Nattering Nabobs of Negativism
I did battle during interviews with Brian Mulroney a couple of times during the 80s and early 90s while he was PM over Nafta and Meech lake. I use the word battle because that is how he approached every studio interview that questioned his policy and his politics.
Like some of his American counterparts, he characterized most of us in the media as “Nattering Nabobs of Negativism.” I took offense to the characterization at the time but have come to appreciate his perspective with my own aging and maturity as a journalist especially in the wake of recent Olympic coverage. There is a difference of course between the media holding people, politicians, agencies and policies to account by way of tough questioning and opposing views, and setting out to focus on the negative angles of story as the story itself.
The latter has become in my view too much of a juggernaut when it comes to Olympic coverage. Pack journalism is not new but its way too prevalent in today’s media universe.
This current avalanche of negative coverage was launched by Fleet streeters in the U.K. and picked up as a main story by mainstream media as a story itself. Yes, it is part of this Olympic mosaic that the fourth pillar of the cauldron didn’t emerge out of the opening ceremony floor , that the death of an athlete before the games began tempered the pent up excitement that had been building in the final days, but as our Carl Hanske found out yesterday when talking to visitors from around the world, most are thrilled by the experience and the location.
I also heard NBC anchor Brian Williams extol the virtues of Vancouver during a CBC Interview today calling it a magical place. So I don’t know about you, but I am going to turn the page and change the channel from those who are choosing to focus on the down side. I’ve lost patience for and appreciation of the “Nattering Nabobs of Negativity.”