As I was driving around town Sunday, a newsbreak on one of Toronto’s talk radio stations (am 640, I think) spoke about a recommendation to raise gas taxes in Ontario from “The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives”. The recommendation was promoted uncritically by the newswriter as a solution to some sort of lack of affordable housing.
You can bet if, say, the Fraser Institute published a report recommending a reduction of gas taxes, it would be labelled as a “right-wing think tank” with the implication that the recommendation can be quickly dismissed. (I first learned of this “selective labelling” phenomenon a couple of years ago, when I got around to reading Bernie Goldberg’s brilliant expose of the mainstream media, Bias.)
I was all set to get worked up into a lather over incessant Canadian media bias and the legitimization of a radical socialist union-sponsored opinion shop, until I did the obligatory Google News search, and got a big surprise. Major props to the Canadian Press’ Chinta Puxley, winner of today’s “How did that one slip by the editor” award, for her work on the story, “Alternative Budget Calls for Tax Hike”:
The Ontario government should hike corporate taxes and add two cents at the gas pump to pay for a $10-billion injection into affordable housing, welfare and the environment when it tables its budget March 22, recommends a report to be released Monday.
The annual alternative budget, compiled by the left-wing think tank Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, argues little progress has been made under almost four years of Liberal government.
Ah, those four words – LEFT-WING THINK TANK – mean the world to this reader, and they made it onto the web sites of nearly all of Canada’s mainstream media organizations (CTV, Toronto Star, and others). It is great to see a little integrity and fairness creep into Canadian journalism for once.
A cursory google search on Puxley’s work reveals little on her own personal views – for all I know, she’s a lefty who had those words added in by a good editor. But until I hear otherwise, I’ll give her the credit – thank you Chinta for calling a spade a spade! And it certainly is a spade… check out this example of what kind of thing the CCPA stands for here in this news release from December 2006, and try to get to the end without throwing up: “Taxes are good for a nation’s health and well-being—study” .