It wasn’t that long ago, that the Canadian military came up with the idea that it could set up a propaganda officer for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
As kind as that offer was, Trudeau turned it down because he had a better idea.
Writing for The Globe and Mail, Andrew Cyone explains:
I don’t want to alarm you, but you might like to know that the federal government is about to take over the media.
Perhaps you will think I am exaggerating. But before the spring is out, based on its own announced timeline, there won’t be a patch of grass on the media landscape – broadcasting or newspapers, digital or analog, curated or user-generated – that the government does not either regulate or subsidize or both. If takeover is not the word, what is?
Broadcasting, of course, fell to the state long ago. Every minute of every hour of every day of what is broadcast on Canadian radio and television is overseen by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), with its sprawling mandate to protect the public from material that is harmful, degrading or American. Though since much of the content it scrutinizes, classifies and regulates in such detail has already been put through the bureaucratic wringer at the front end via various subsidy councils, it hardly seems worth the effort.
Perhaps we should revisit the Canadian military’s plan for an official propaganda office, which it described as a “weaponization” of the military’s public affairs branch.
The Ottawa Citizen explained their plan, particularly note the practice run in the last paragraph:
The Canadian Forces wants to establish a new organization that will use propaganda and other techniques to try to influence the attitudes, beliefs and behaviours of Canadians, according to documents obtained by this newspaper.
The plan comes on the heels of the Canadian Forces spending more than $1 million to train public affairs officers on behaviour modification techniques of the same sort used by the parent firm of Cambridge Analytica, as well as a controversial and bizarre propaganda training mission in which the military forged letters from the Nova Scotia government to warn the public that wolves were wandering in the province.