CBC Lies Claim More Than One Victim

Had Jian Ghomeshi not lied to Billy Bob Thornton, The Boxmasters would still be on tour with Willie Nelson.

UPDATE: It has subsequently been announced that one of the band members has the flue. The band will rejoin the tour April 14 in the States.


  1. Anonymous
    Posted April 13, 2009 at 10:02 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece
  2. Anonymous
    Posted April 12, 2009 at 12:13 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    As much as our arts coverage is of the “promotional/rewrite the press release” style, it’s still supposed to be journalism. Guests are never allowed to control what comes out of your mouth.

    Billy Bob wanted a music-only interview and that’s what he had, until he screwed it up for himself.

    He’s not the first guest to balk at the intro. For me the intros are far scarier than the interviews themselves.

  3. Anonymous
    Posted April 12, 2009 at 11:57 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    They’re on the same side of history as Civil War re-enactors: tangential, irrelevant, and vaguely sad.

  4. Anonymous
    Posted April 12, 2009 at 10:21 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    “history”?? oh please. get over yourselves.

  5. Fake Ouimet
    Posted April 12, 2009 at 10:14 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Nope, Anonymoose, Im sticking to my vegan pacifist guns here. While it is not the reason why the interview became popular or an issue, the only important point to explore is the question of whether or not the CBC entered into an unethical agreement to allow a source to dictate the content of an interview.

    You seem to think thats a trifling issue. Well see how trifling it turns out to be, i.e., well see which side of history you end up on.

  6. Allan
    Posted April 12, 2009 at 9:18 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I had heard about that interview, Sonny, and thought that the tape still existed somewhere on the internet. But it could just be a memory of a story about a Zappa interview that was not broadcast-worthy. It was done very late at night.
    Zappa fans and his children would no doubt love to hear or see it, but if you want to keep it from them I guess that’s your call.
    Maybe you can show it just to your friends to impress them with how special you are.
    But hoarding it is really just doing yourself a favour, and not exactly honouring the memory and legacy of Frank Zappa.
    So go fuck yourself.

  7. Sonny Bovril
    Posted April 12, 2009 at 7:43 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    There’s not much value here, you’re right.

    But I agree with the Anonymous who writes many paragraphs. This post is not rational.
    Instructions? Deals? Agreements? Ethics? If there was some kind of contract or rider on that interview, you can bet lawyers would be involved, or the interview wouldn’t have made it to air.
    And speaking of Frank Zappa, I was in old studio R in the Radio Building in 1978 when he was being interviewed by Don Harron for Morningside.
    It didn’t go well for Don. At the end, the technician handed the producer the tape and the tape was dropped into the trash bin. I have that tape. Would I put it on the air? On You Tube? No.

    I used to suggest this blog to friends as a bit of fun. I would be embarrassed to do that now.

  8. Fake Ouimet
    Posted April 12, 2009 at 7:08 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    s/Ouimey/Ouimet/ (though that would be a phonetic transcription for many people)

    Such are the risks of typing a comment on an iTouch.

  9. Allan
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 11:09 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    There’s no value to mentioning my location.
    If you can’t cooperate with that then your comments are not worth publishing.

  10. Fake Ouimey
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 7:50 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    There’s only one “pseudonym,” and it is more like a username. On the old Tea Makers I just commented under my own name. If you’re backtracking Google logins, though, be advised I have too many and get them wrong occasionally.

    Almost no comments have been deleted, and I suffer no paranoia. Or fools, for that matter.

  11. Anonymous
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 7:03 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    omg. main point:
    Q didn’t want the boxmasters for their awesome music.
    they wanted them for billy bob.

    that’s how this went wrong.

    didn’t sound to me like there was much merit to what was played in studio frankly. mediocre really. so why bother.

    oh, celebrity up close.

    he’ll come on national radio for a live performance, it’ll be great.
    and then it’ll be jian and billy all pals and shit.
    jian is an obsequious twit. he belongs on etalk or whatever the fuck.

    billy was just peddling. and trying to avoid the crap questions and
    associations. and then he ran into some nobody on canadian public radio who thinks he is a somebody. billy doesn’t need jian. or Q. that’s why he can walk away for the rest of the tour. fuck it. don’t need the attention.

    so remember. it was NEVER about the band or their music.

  12. Anonymous
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 3:58 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I think Ghomeshi was just being honest to his audience, if not to Billy Bob.

    Thornton, on the other hand, was trying to live out a fantasy of being 18 again, and coercing everyone else to comply, which is dishonest to the audience.

    I predict Billy Bob will remember this week as his watershed moment, after which he truly became an irrelevant, unloved old geezer.

    Maybe that’s the point of identification, Allan, yes?

  13. Allan
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 3:46 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    There’s some regret about about going into my personal background here. Much better to remain mysterious and undefined.

    For me, it’s not at all about these two individuals but the ethics of what took place.

    It’s futile to think that I could ever hope to persuade anyone here, and that’s not even my aim. Nor is my goal or joe’s goal or anyone to simply get attention and slander as many people as possible. Ultimately, Ghomeshi and Billy Bob and George and Tod and Stursberg do that sufficiently to themselves.
    What we’re doing, what DMc is doing, what Tod was doing, what Bill Brioux is doing, is simply participating. Each in our own whacked out way.
    And I think the work we do here is just as valid and necessary as anything from those guys.
    So is Command N, and Raymi, and you should have seen all the pages I’ve seen covering this Billy Bob story.
    United Press International picked it up from a piece in the Vancouver Sun, and this outrageous story in The National Post, which seems to have been taken over by teenagers.
    It’s a fascinating issue, from a too often very dull and compromised CBC.

  14. Allan
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 3:21 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Thornton is a phenomenal talent. And there are thousands of them. I miss Toller Cranston.
    His music is not bad, as you hear for yourself at this page, and as long as he and his small audiences are happy, it’s a good thing.
    Hillbilly versions of beloved British hits are not my cup of Tea. I’ll stick with Amy until Tod picks up a ukulele.

    You mention personal advantage, and here it is …

    Ghomeshi said he would be at a disadvantage if he didn’t mention the acting, he was afraid that the audience would find it odd, so he felt the discussion about a band no one had the slightest interest in needed “context”. Meaning his pride dictated that he make it clear somehow that “the reason I’m doing this is …” and that in itself was very insulting to the band.

    I realize too that a lot of people are still puzzled by that great line “would you say that to Tom Petty?”
    He may have made history with that one. A great line for SNL.

    I know exactly what he meant, and it really raised the level of consciousness with that remark.

    compulsively yours …

  15. Anonymous
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 3:08 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece


    I am afraid the last anonymous is right: you simply aren’t interested in a fair debate. You’ve gone off on all these tangents about George and Frank Zappa and Stan Persky. We could have a separate conversation about all that or about your history with Jian. But can you not accept that all of that is utterly irrelevant to the analysis of a very simple incident: Billy Bob Thornton’s embarrassing public meltdown over a bizarre personal slight. It really doesn’t matter what Jian is or was as a person in your mind. It reminds me of the Mounties trying to dig out dirt on that Polish immigrant who died at the Vancouver Airport. Who cares? Look at the subject at hand and deal with it. You make it seem as if this is all a matter between you, Jian and Billy Bob. It’s not. The audience is everything because if it weren’t for them, both Jian and Billy Bob would become the same nobodies that you and I are. That’s why, regardless of your views about Jian, however legitimate they might be, Billy Bob’s behaviour was uncivilized and inexcusable.

    The fact that you refuse to accept this is illustrated by your comment that “I might suggest the alternative – “you fucking asshole, piece of shit, you knew full well I didn’t want to have that brought up, and you you arrogant little twit did it anyway.” This is not a “Fuck you! No, fuck you!” macho screaming match in an alley over an ex-girlfriend. It’s a radio interview for the benefit of all those others who don’t give a flying fuck about Billy Bob’s weird idiosyncrasies or Jian’s supposed ego trips. They just want to hear an interesting conversation.

  16. Allan
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 3:00 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I’m picturing that we landed in the ditch a long time ago, but it’s not accurate to call a ditch really, as long as anonymous comes around to read it.
    It’s more like those cement waterways in LA that people go racing in like The Terminator and Grease.

    So please keep visiting, as a surprising amount have who never say anything.
    And carry on with the daily report cards of how we’re doing, that you apparently find the most interesting aspect of what happens here.
    It’s all about feedback, as Tod might say if he were still saying anything.
    But even more, really, it’s all about surprisingly good feedback.

  17. Anonymous
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 2:59 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I’m not sure why this site is still in my reader. I subscribed ages ago because I liked the insider’s perspective. This blog was often funny, sometimes sad, sometimes thoughtful, but always interesting. I especially appreciated that the author loved the CBC, for all of its faults, and honestly wanted to make it better.

    None of those things are still true. I would never have subscribed to this site as it is today.

  18. Anonymous
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 2:49 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    FYI, I think Billy Bob Thornton is a phenomenal actor/writer, a pretty amateurish musician, and also a spoiled bully/weirdo/asshole.

    Jian Ghomeshi? I don't know enough about him to know for sure, but what I saw in that clip was not a Machiavellian opportunistic weasel, but a well-meaning, competetant interviewer who made an oafish blunder, for which he quickly & honestly tried to make ammends.

    I see no way in which Jian would gain personal advantage by mentioning Billy Bob's acting career.

    The HATE against Ghomeshi coming from YOU, Allan, is unbelievable. You still have not provided ONE specific illustration as to why Ghomeshi is some sort of horrendous monster, which you seem desperately to want me to believe.

    You're not telling the whole story here, Allan. I cannot take anything you say with anything other than a grain of salt.

    Also, I really do think you may have some sort of anger issue or compulsive disorder.

  19. Anonymous
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 2:01 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    There is no such thing as a discussion with Fake Ouimet or Allan.

    Both have demonstrated on multiple occasions a disordered and unhealthy obsession with anyone who is more noted and listened to than them, which, let’s face it, is just about everybody…and certainly anybody on the CBC.

    Fake Ouimet bristles at not being invited to events or excluded in any way, whines about how nobody listens to him, posts under four or five pseudonyms, and deletes any comment thread that turns against him. He is hostile and paranoid, imagining and inventing slights and challenges to his person that are met, inevitably, with unrelenting hostility.

    Allan started as a bit of a joke, with an unbelievably over the top obsession with Inside The CBC’s Tod Maffin. If there’s conventional wisdom on any topic, Allan will be on the other side. He is like the child who never learned the difference between the “good attention” and the “bad attention” in school.

    You can argue whatever logic you want. Logic will not permeate either cranium. These two are cranks who will never, ever admit that they are wrong, and live to spread negativity and pull at the cuffs of anyone above them, who, let’s face it, is just about everybody.

    They are the face of this site being driven straight to the ditch.

  20. Allan
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 1:28 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    This is a discussion. No one is going to win or lose here. We can share ideas and observations and pretty much let loose.
    There will always be a segment who will try and shut down or thwart dialogue even a free society.

    You say you’ve dealt with creative people, then you must know that they are somewhat different in their approach to the rules of behaviour and society. They can be law-abiding and exemplerary as role models or outright lunatics, drug addicts and just plain dangerous.
    I find Billy’s approach here to be overly subdued, but I can relate to the situation he finds himself in here.
    Yes, in a do-over he may have been better to walk out right there and then leaving Ghomeshi up the creek, and talking entirely about the band!
    He took a different approach. Had he known what was in store for him with Ghomesh maybe he could have prepard something mor clever. What happened is what happened.
    He lost no respect from me.

    On the other hand, Ghomesh shows all the signs of attempting to pull a fast one. You don’t see these indicators?
    (and let’s not flip a coin about who is smarter here – YOU are no doubt way smarter than me and I concede that from the getgo)

    You want to stand back and look at the behaviour of two men, regardless of who or what they are. I get that. And I get that more people think Ghomeshi is cool and calm and polite and Billy is being a dick. I’m still free to form my own opinion despite being outnumbered.

    I have a background that causes me to take a certain view of the world, society and they way people act. It evolves as I come to learn more, but some things will never change.

    I watched Ghomeshi as he walked down the stairs in the first episode of Play. I’ve given him plenty of chances since then to impress me. He does not. I see his attitude and choices as being smarmy and insincere, with a specific purpose to place himself on equal or in abetter light than the people he’s kissing up to.
    And based on what? What is the big deal of his career?
    I am not impressed.
    I know his current job very well. I think George is way better at drawing people out and attracting genuine affection from the guest.
    I recognize Jian’s strengths, but that still doesn’t mean I have to like him as a person. And I do not,based on his many performances that I’ve been exposed to.
    If I detected the same behaviour from George, and there’s a bit of that, I would have objected just as strenuously. So you can stop looking for some deeper meaning to my criticism.

    You say
    It is inconceivable to me that the CBC would have agreed to some sort of stipulation
    First, I don’t find it inconceivable at all, but we just this differently.
    Second, is there any evidence to suggest that they did indeed agree to a stipulation (apart from the fact that Ghomeshi agrees to a stipulation right on the air!) ?
    Third, both men agree that a condition had been placed on the interview prior to its start. Whether the CBC agreed or not may still be debatable. Let’s pretend they did not agree. So did they then inform Billy that they were declining the restriction? Apparently not.
    Fourth, was Ghomeshi fully aware of the condition when he started the interview? He relates that the producers did indeed advise him.
    Billy Bob has stated publicly that they looked him in the eye and agreed and promised to abide by the condition.
    How then can you say that all of this is inconceivable?
    The evidence is there – unless someone is lying.

    You say
    I would bet my house, my car and my job that nothing was said about the INTRO.
    I know what you’re getting at. Splitting hairs and playing word games.
    The only thing we can know for sure about the actual wording of the agreement is that in in Billy Bob’s mind he believed the intro was also covered, and so we see his immediate reaction as Ghomeshi gleefully recites BBT’s “context”.

    I am not debating the merit or lunacy or inappropriateness od making the request. That’s another issue.

    But the video makes clear that the request was made, and that Billy Bob felt that a binding agreement has been broken.
    Are you still trying to argue this?

    You say
    should have said politely something to the effect of, “I’m sorry, Jian but I cannot continue this interview because my understanding was that the questions would be different.”
    I might suggest the alternative – “you fucking asshole, piece of shit, you knew full well I didn’t want to have that brought up, and you you arrogant little twit did it anyway”
    Different strokes for different people.
    I do not have a problem with what Billy Bob did.
    I’ve seen and heard far worse in a radio studio.
    I find Thornton’s action to be neither ridiculous nor indefensible.
    I think he’s a very cool, really neat guy. I like him.
    I find the sputtering Ghomeshi to be .. something else..

    I like and respect George, but when he does something I find problematic, I say so, and have.
    I try to judge people by the way I see them treat others or the way they treat me, a total nobody/stranger.
    I found George Ryga and Isabelle Lebourdais and Eric Burdon and Jimmy Page and Lou Reed and Johnny Cash Stevie Winwood and a hundred others to be people that I liked and who were kind to me.
    And I found the Jefferson Airplane and Jimmy Dean to be assholes.
    Dean even spoke during a performance to complain about the interview we did with him and Stan Persky.
    A Top 40 radio DJ once got on the air to say that he had hoped I would get run over by a BC Hydro bus.
    I found Frank Zappa to be somewhat arrogant, and yet I still admired him very much.
    I have a history of experiences and memories in this celebrity interview/radio production stuff that allows me to think I may actually know a few things about this field just as you do.

    I think I know a sleazebag (now termed a douchebag for 2009) when I encounter one.
    And I think I know some really outstanding, great people.
    That’s why I choose to hang with Ouimet, and still hope to learn more, even if she’s nearly half my age. I admire her and like her.
    And I admire and like Billy Bob Thornton.
    And I’ll tell you that if I ever did something that would cause him to call me an asshole, I would have to take a very long look in the mirror.

    Ghomeshi is plays games, and judging from a large number of comments at the YouTube site for the famous video, I’m not alone in my view of him.

  21. Anonymous
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 1:02 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Fake Ouimet,

    It’s amazing how out of touch with the essence of this situation you and Allan are. There is an elephant in the room, and you keep talking about a crooked painting hanging somewhere. Anyone watching that interview would say that the issue here isn’t the agreement (made or not made) by the CBC with Billy Bob. It is Billy Bob’s disproportionately outrageous behaviour. As I have said to Allan, even if you are both right about this supposed agreement, Billy Bob’s reaction was completely unjustified and completely oblivious of the audience. If this were a public road, it would be as if someone responded to being cut off in traffic by ramming his car into that of the culprit, then blocking all others from moving. To repeat once again, Billy Bob’s behaviour was much more an insult to listeners, not to Jian. I heard Billy Bob’s “explanation” on that video from the Willy Nelson concert. He said something to the effect that he felt betrayed by Jian and producers and therefore, “no interview.” He still doesn’t get it. Once you are on the air, you belong to the audience. Period. No ANDs, IFs or BUTs. And there is simply no excuse for a professional performer like Billy Bob to violate that rule. Unless, he is an egomaniacal jerk. And for the life me, I can’t understand how the two of you don’t get it: this is about the AUDIENCE!!!

    As for your statement that there is some sort of lapse of ethics in agreeing to certain things being off limits in an interview, you are clearly not someone who works in this business. There is a reality out there, and as long as the request is reasonable, there is nothing wrong with honouring it. For example, if you want to interview Alec Baldwin about his political views, and he asks that problems in his relationship with Kim Basinger not come up, there is nothing wrong with agreeing to it. Similarly, if Billy Bob asks that the interview focus on his singing and not acting, it’s perfectly legitimate. Ultimately, all these things are ruled by common sense. And common sense would suggest that the mention of Billy Bob’s Oscar isn’t even remotely a cause for an idiotic public freakout.

  22. Fake Ouimet
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 11:24 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Anonymoose, you can bet whatever worldly possessions you wish, but journalists should not pander to stars ego-driven wishes that certain topics not be broached. It is a lapse of ethics. The distinctions between Q&A and intro and between contract and tacit agreement are beside the point. No such agreement in any form is ethically justificable for a journalist.

    Unless you think Ghomeshi isnt one.

  23. Anonymous
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 10:51 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Wow, that was a great post, Anonymous Above. Whether it calms down this lunatic, remains to be seen.

  24. Anonymous
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 10:40 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece


    I’m the Anonymous from April 11, 2.26 a.m., and I’ll try to be respectful one more time.

    I can see your general point, but you aren’t seeing the forest for the trees. I’ll emphasize two main things again:

    1. I have booked hundreds of interviews like this for the last twenty years. It is inconceivable to me that the CBC would have agreed to some sort of stipulation that not a word be uttered under any circumstances about Billy Bob’s acting. Nor can I imagine his handlers asking for that. More than likely, the understanding (“instructions” as Billy Bob called it) would have been that no QUESTIONS be asked about his acting. I would bet my house, my car and my job that nothing was said about the INTRO. Ultimately, the point of this understanding would have been to steer the interview in the direction of Billy Bob and his group’s musical accomplishments without making it seem that they’re getting this chance simply because Billy Bob is a famous actor. (There is obvious hypocrisy there on Billy Bob’s part in that his group would never have gotten that chance for the interview if not for Billy Bob’s fame. But I won’t pursue that one.) There is absolutely nothing in that INTRO or in Jian’s early line of questioning to violate the spirit of that understanding.

    2. I’ll say this again, although you chose to ignore it: yes, Billy Bob was angry — I admit that — but even if he was under the impression that not a word would be uttered about his acting, to put it mildly, he OVERREACTED. It’s simply not serious to suggest that the supposed lie by the CBC or Jian warranted completely unprofessional behaviour in front of thousands of listeners and others. If you believe that I have lied to you about something that is not life-turning, and you react to me IN PUBLIC in a similar way to the way Billy Bob did, don’t be surprised if you get little sympathy from those around you. Whatever was Billy Bob’s disagreement with Jian, the audience was a third party to this and under no circumstance deserved this kind of treatment, if he had respect for anyone but himself. Any sane adult who goes on a radio show has a responsibility first and foremost to the AUDIENCE and no one else. If Billy Bob had had an ounce of class, the second he concluded that some line had been crossed by Jian, he should have said politely something to the effect of, “I’m sorry, Jian but I cannot continue this interview because my understanding was that the questions would be different.” Then, he could have walked out. Instead, his behaviour became ridiculous. To do what he did for those 10+ minutes tells me that he is a self-important, egotistical boor who cares about no one but himself. And that’s why you are getting all these insults, Allan: you are attacking Jian and the CBC, AND defending the indefensible.

    I don’t know this for a fact, but it’s obvious to me that there is some sort of underlying issue between you and Jian which has completely clouded your thinking on this. Pure and simple, you hate him and I would again bet my house, my car and my job that you wouldn’t have been so apoplectic under similar circumstances if the show host had been someone you liked and respected.

  25. Anonymous
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 9:40 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    There’s a big difference between being a CBC dissident and simply being INSANE.

    Allan, you are INSANE.

  26. Anonymous
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 9:30 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Allan, since you don’t even know what was said beforehand, I suggest shutting the fuck up for once.

  27. Anonymous
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 9:17 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I can’t believe the UN hasn’t intervened.

    Allan, take your Xanax.

  28. Allan
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 8:45 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Yes, clearly these are difficult concepts for some people to grasp.

    ~ He and his producers say, `We promise you we wont say that

    ~ we dont allow anybody to tell us what we can and cannot say

    ~ (but when they do) “I’m cool with that!”

    Yes, it can time to sink in for some people.

  29. Anonymous
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 6:31 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    So Allan. Did the CBC infect one Boxmaster and and crew member with the flu? Don’t stop the berserk raving now.

    Come on:

    Ghomeshi invented the FLU!!! HE IS SO EVIIILL!!!

  30. Allan's Shadow
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 5:01 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece


  31. Allan's Shadow
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 5:01 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece


  32. Allan's Shadow
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 5:01 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece


  33. Anonymous
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 4:42 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    That’s a very nice tinfoil hat you’re wearing, Allen. Good luck in that fight against flouridation.

  34. Allan
    Posted April 11, 2009 at 1:45 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I seriously resent when people play word games with the truth, and Ghomeshi is without a doubt such a person.
    You only need to hear his sputtering around the word “instructed” to realize that.
    I also resent holding up someone as some kind of hero for (a) making deals about content in order to get guests on the show, but I know how these things work. I did a lot of interviews a long time ago. (b) pretending he now wants to champion unrestricted questioning of celebs.

    “That Ghomeshi couldn’t even mention in the introduction that Billy Bob had won an Oscar? Why on earth would you come to that conclusion? There is nothing in the media about that by anyone.”

    Really? How about the words of Billy Bob himself? Or would you care to suggest that you would trust Ghomeshi over Thornton?

    “”The condition was agreed to long before the interview took place.” How do you know any of this?”

    Common sense tells me.
    Are you suggesting that the condition was sprung on them at the last minute?
    Do you think that Thornton would turn up at 6 am and take his chances that they, the CBC, would not agree to his conditions?
    Are these interviews not arranged days even weeks ahead?
    And if he had sprung it at the last minute, wouldn’t Ghomeshi be saying so to cover his ass?
    And why is the timing of the agreement so important?
    The important thing is that they DID make such an agreement, whether it was a wise thing to do or not.
    They did it. The CBC agreed to his conditions. There’s no question whatsoever about that.
    Ghomeshi admits it in the interview.
    You don’t find that to be a disturbing decision on the part of the CBC?
    I do.

    Billy is insane?
    How would you have felt in his position, to come all the way there and find that you had been lied to?

    Jian is being held up as a hero, when what he and the CBC did was reprehensible, showing just how low they will go to get ratings.
    Never mind the American content of Wheel that we must endure if we are going to get Canadian shows from the CBC.

    “For whatever petulant, childish reason, Billy Bob decided to have a tantrum. For the life of me — and I have read carefully all your posts on this, Allan — I can’t figure out why you’re defending Billy Bob and attacking Jian and the CBC”

    You don’t know why after all this?
    You’ve listened to the video, read my statements and the comment that Billy made from the stage at Massey Hall and you still don’t know why anyone would be upset?

    Then let’s try it again …

    “I sat down and talked with this guy. He and his producers say, `We promise you we won’t say that’ (meaning references to Thornton’s acting career). The very first thing they said was that.”

    “I don’t really like sensationalism,” he added. “If you look someone in the eyes and promise them something, and you don’t do it, you don’t get the interview. That’s the way it goes.”

    Does that help?
    He felt cheated.

    And when I read that Ghomeshi says “Our policy is that we don’t allow anybody to tell us what we can and cannot say,” then I feel cheated.
    I think the country is being cheated, by a total bullshit artist.

    “Eh, I wasn’t instructed” he sputters as he tries to figure out just the right words to say without actually lying outright.
    Well, OK, Jian, if you weren’t “instructed”, were you “told”? “informed”? “advised”?
    What kind of fools does he take people for?
    Word games designed to deceive the audience.

    I really do appreciate your comment. At least you took an interest.

    You mention documentation, but I think we both know that that’s a non issue.

    But I will ask you this:

    what do you think the chances are of getting the exact wording of that agreement out of the CBC?
    wouldn’t that run the risk of blowing their credibility?
    Isn’t it more in their interest to leave it all very vague?

    What if the statement had been this:
    There is to be no mention of Billy’s movie career
    and the CBC says “we promise to adhere to that”.

    Regardless of whether that was a stupid thing to ask and an even dumber thing to agree to, did they keep their word or not?
    Simple. A very simple thing to establish.

    so you think I’m going a bit overboard about this?

    you think that the integrity of the CBC is a trivial, unimportant subject?
    who cares if a liar is hosting a national radio show on our behalf and screwing foreign visitors over with false promises.

    I do.

    Have never met Ghomeshi and I don’t think he’d look forward to being interviewed by me.
    I know a bullshit artist when I hear one .
    Like I said I’m not unfamiliar with how that game is played, or do I have to spell it out …

    Anyway, thanks. Appreciate your comment.
    Try to enjoy the other more talented writers here if you have time.

  35. Anonymous
    Posted April 10, 2009 at 11:26 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I’ve been reading a lot of your comments, Allan, about this bizarre incident on the various posts that have sprung here since. I don’t know if you have some sort of history with Jian Ghomeshi that makes you so pathological about him on this matter, but this is weird. Really, really weird. You’ve grabbed onto one argument to prove your point — that somehow, the CBC and/or Ghomeshi had made an ironclad (written?) guarantee to Billy Bob Thornton that not a word about his acting career would be mentioned. Do you seriously think that there was anything other than a general agreement to ask questions about his singing and not acting? That Ghomeshi couldn’t even mention in the introduction that Billy Bob had won an Oscar? Why on earth would you come to that conclusion? There is nothing in the media about that by anyone. The only thing that exists is Billy Bob’s paranoid line in the interview to the effect that there was some sort of “instruction.” Have you spoken to Billy Bob directly? To anyone else who was there when this agreement took place? To someone at the CBC who has seen the “document?” On what basis can you possibly make a statement like, “The condition was agreed to long before the interview took place.” How do you know any of this? What really was the “condition?” How do you know that it was “agreed” to? And, where do you get that it was agreed to “long before the interview?” You are the only source of these categorical allegations. I swear, reading your aplomb on this makes it seem as if you’ve simply repeated all these sentences many, many times to yourself and therefore decided that they are true…

    And even if, for just one second, we were to assume that you were 100% right about this agreement, where does all this outrage about the “cheating”, the “lying”, the “getting away” come from? Are you okay? Do you realize how disproportionate your anger is to the supposed transgression? And conversely, do you not realize that even if the CBC had committed this “crime,” Billy Bob’s behaviour during that interview bordered on the insane? He is an adult, isn’t he?

    At the end of the day, I don’t have a dog in this fight: I am not a fan of Jian, and I have always liked Billy Bob as an actor, the only way I know him. I would have been happy to hear about his singing career, and from watching the interview it appeared to me that Jian was trying to get at that for me. For whatever petulant, childish reason, Billy Bob decided to have a tantrum. For the life of me — and I have read carefully all your posts on this, Allan — I can’t figure out why you’re defending Billy Bob and attacking Jian and the CBC.

  36. Allan
    Posted April 10, 2009 at 10:19 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    They offered to be interviewed on one condition, and you say that’s fine.
    Then you say don’t expect the CBC to keep to the agreement, because that would be bizarre.

    The condition was agreed to long before the interview took place.

    The CBC is not known for being unable to keep their word, until now, thanks to Ghomeshi.

  37. Anonymous
    Posted April 10, 2009 at 9:27 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    sorry, but this post is lame at best, slanderous at worst.

    When you ask for an interview and say it has to be about the band, fine okay. But don’t expect your Hollywood background to go unmentioned. It would be bizarre to expect otherwise.

  38. Allan
    Posted April 10, 2009 at 8:50 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    The issue is the ability of a CBC employee to keep their word when making a deal to get a guest.
    Think about that.

  39. Anonymous
    Posted April 10, 2009 at 8:19 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Okay, I'll march right down there and do that ASAP. This issue being so important & all.

    Imagine! JG said maybe ten words about BBT's acting career before diving into the music. The injustice of this is so colossal, I'm ripping my entrails out just thinking about it.

  40. Allan
    Posted April 10, 2009 at 8:12 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    What you can do is demand that the CBC come clean about the exact wording of the deal they agreed to with Billy Bob.
    Instead of denying that there was a deal.
    Instead of pretending surprise that Billy got upset.
    Instead of making a deal and then saying “we don’t make deals” and that it’s wrong to put restrictions on entertainment “journalists”. After the fact.
    You can demand that the CBC show some honour here instead of hiding the truth.

  41. Anonymous
    Posted April 10, 2009 at 7:46 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece


    In fact, if Allan’s for it, I’m against it!

    Hey, it’s a hobby!

  42. Allan
    Posted April 10, 2009 at 7:36 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Let me guess. You’re cheering because an accomplished American celebrity got swindled by our national public broadcaster.
    You’re cheering because your hero Ghomeshi is getting away with telling something less than the whole truth, and has hurt the income of a few families that you couldn’t care less about.
    You’re cheering because lying and cheating by the CBC is so cool.
    Cheering because you don’t like Boxmasters’ music, so it’s great when the CBC damages the competition for our great Canadian artists … who fully cooperate with the games of Ghomeshi.
    You’re cheering because honour and integrity has died at the CBC.

  43. Anonymous
    Posted April 10, 2009 at 7:19 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    This “Jian Ghomeshi” sounds like some sort of horrendous person. How can we stop him from betraying and ruining the careers of good, honest visiting musician/historian baseball-and-monster-mag fans (AND NOT ACTORS)?

    Who will this beast ruin and sabotage next? What “context” will he insert on air, resulting in such grave, shocking, spiralling injustice? Stop him!

  44. Anonymous
    Posted April 10, 2009 at 7:03 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece


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