Making mincemeat out of Mercer

God bless the CBC press clippers.

For those of you who don’t know who I’m talking about, let me explain.

Every morning the CBC press clippers wake up very early and read all the newspapers and magazines in Canada. English and French. They carefully clip every article that mentions the CBC and self-publish the results in a ‘zine before most of us have had a cup of coffee.

This is the Sniffin’ Glue for CBC executives.

It’s also remarkably convenient for mystery bloggers.

Nothing that is printed on dead trees in this country escapes the gaze of the CBC press clippers. They are nameless and faceless, but I imagine them to be highly intelligent freaks who read every goddamn thing in the world.

And this may surprise you, dear reader, but as far as CBC senior management are concerned, if it isn’t written on paper, it doesn’t exist. And nothing I have ever written has ever made it into the ‘zine.

Letter to the editor in The Kingston Whig-Standard mentions the CBC in passing? It gets in.

Half-baked column in the Estevan Mercury? It gets in, too.

Article about the slow hemorrhaging of, with 22 comments from current and former staff? Doesn’t make the cut.

Antonia’s blog? Not there.

Doyle? Front page every goddamn time.

Now, The National Post is dead to me. Except for what I read in the clippings.

So if you read Rick Mercer’s blog and saw his post on Conrad Black, you might have had a good laugh and then moved on.

But his post was one half of a he-said she-said in the National Post, and Black got to answer.

Now, I don’t know much about Conrad Black. I don’t think most people give a flying fig about Conrad Black. But the media cares, so we all have to hear about him.

But Black’s rebuttal (via The Monarchist) makes quick work of Mercer, is more accurate, is smarter, and even funnier.

Rick, Rick, Rick. When you sign on to do this kind of thing, make sure you get to do the “she-said,” all right?


  1. Dwight
    Posted October 6, 2006 at 7:41 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Okay…let’s run with that: make part of the price tag of Lord Black’s resumption of citizenship a stint as showrunner and chief camera bait of a CBC series, as proposed above. Let him and Mercer potshot each other from their respective video pulpits until the cows come home for the last time. And enjoy — not suffer — the consequences to MotherCorp. Because if I have my way, the consequences will all be to the good.

    Yes, it’s an Evil Plan. Why else hatch it?

  2. Allan
    Posted October 5, 2006 at 5:18 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I like Conrad Black quite a bit actually, and would be thrilled to interview him. He’d be pretty cool to have on The Dragon’s Den, but of course he’s really a Trump-type that deserves his own show.
    Why not offer him a half hour to do whatever his clever mind chooses?

    Doyle can be front page for the clippers every day of the week for all that it matters. The real crime would be for anyone to take him seriously. Sad for Canada and broadcasting that this is the best the Globe can come up with.

  3. hugh
    Posted October 4, 2006 at 7:36 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    ahh… the ‘post … that makes *much* more sense. duh. temporarily brain dead here.

    anyway, lord black has never lacked for vocabulary, nor pithy replies.

    I give mercer an 8, and conrad an 8.

    and if lord black is guilty, then he’ll get what he deserves (and mercer won’t have to feel guilty); if he’s not, then mercer’s stings quickly will be forgotten. except I bet they won’t.

  4. Ouimet
    Posted October 4, 2006 at 5:11 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    hugh – It all took place in the National Post, but the Monarchist was the only place I could find Black’s response online.

    Mercer takes some easy shots, but the way I read it Black handled them with grace and humour.

    And did I mention the title of his rebuttal was “Chrétien’s caprice?”

    When’s the last time you heard that word in a newspaper, let alone the Post?

  5. Kevin
    Posted October 4, 2006 at 3:51 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Another vote for Mercer. Black’s response reads like he got a thesaurus for Christmas and is desperate to use it.

  6. hugh
    Posted October 4, 2006 at 11:11 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    oh come on, ouimette! conrad may technically be “right” (chretien certainly was a jerk about things, and it did all seem pretty tin pot at the time, and connie probably did intend to reapply as a canadian citizen when the reform party got elected – after all he founded a newspaper with that objective); but he is also a pompous jerk, and always has been. a pretty successful pompous jerk (the worst kind!).

    if rick mercer can’t make fun of pompous jerks, even ones who sheds fat tears about the unfair legal mess they are in (accused of massive fraud), I don’t know who he should make fun of.

    good for conrad (former owner of 400 newspapers) for responding (on a blog called the monarchist – ?), with a nice touch of wit. but don’t pounce on poor rick mercer, who wrote what everyone in the country was thinking.

    what funnyman opposed to everything conrad black is about could have resisted? on top of which … all this happend in blogs.

    canada, sometimes, is a very surreal place.

  7. Anonymous
    Posted October 4, 2006 at 7:17 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    battle of the lords!!!! the british lord vs. the gay lord.

  8. Dwight
    Posted October 3, 2006 at 8:39 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Actually, this could make for an entertaining long-term feud. We have so few of those hereabouts. And if Lord Black inspires Rick to better material in the process, this ought to be lots of fun.

    Looking forward to it…

  9. Anonymous
    Posted October 3, 2006 at 6:16 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I have to side with Mercer because I always side with the person who has less money. That being said, Black is a douchebag.

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