CBC once again masquerades leftist peacenik group as neutral “think tank” on Afghanistan war

As I’ve pointed out several times, the state-owned CBC constantly engages in securing guest “experts” whom they hold out as totally objective, apolitical, neutral, non-aligned, or non-partisan, but which as I’ve shown you countless times at this web site, turn out to be leftist or far-leftist political operatives or activists. 

For example, the CBC Newsworld’s two-person “team” of “experts” on U.S. politics consists of one person whom they describe variously as “an author” or other such neutral-sounding professions, but who is actually a left-wing political activist and advocate and who writes for the extreme left-wing conservative smear site, the Daily Kos;  and the other member of the “team” is an editor for the left-wing Huffington Post, which they don’t describe as being left-wing at all. 

CTV does this too, as I’ve pointed out.

imageToday, as they’ve done countless times in the past, CBC Newsworld held out a member of the apparently two-man “institute” called the Rideau Institute, , Anthony Salloum (incorrectly identified by the CBC as his partner, Steven Staples, right), as a totally non-partisan, neutral, and apolitical “think tank”.  Usually they engage the other member of the “institute”, Steven Staples.  (See below for more on Steven Staples). 

The Rideau Institute says this about their Anthony Salloum. 

imageAnthony Salloum, the Rideau Institute’s Program Director, is managing our war room and publishing his daily expert analysis of the election campaign on the SmartVote 2008 website. He will also be commenting on each of the poll results as they are made public. Anthony has 20 years of political campaign experience which includes serving as a strategic advisor to former NDP leader Alexa McDonough through four federal elections.

Judging by that, he looks like (and on CBC he sounded like) a far-left political operative to me, not a neutral, objective expert. 

The Rideau Institute website even admits they are an advocacy group right in their own site banner. 

If they are an advocacy group, the CBC should inform Canadians what their advocacy is, which is decidedly left-wing “progressive” (the “institute’s” own word) advocacy on a range of issues, and that they’re peacenicks. 

I’ve written about the Rideau Institute a few times here at PTBC: 

CTV masquerades a far-leftist anti-war advocate as “just another expert” on Afghanistan war
CBC masquerades a far-leftist anti-war advocate as “just another expert” on Afghanistan
Left-wing Steven Staples, “just another expert commentator”, was subject of military report
• …and others.  Search “Rideau Institute” here.

The major section of their website is a blog/feedback section called “SmartVote 2008”—the name which is itself a bit of a giveaway as to their political advocacy work, betraying the CBC’s pretense that it is in any way neutral.  Here’s their own description of it, which betrays its left-wing advocacy (“war” against Harper and conservatives?) bent:

The goal of the project is to bring together a small number of partners to work together to put progressive issues on the national agenda during the campaign.

At the core of SmartVote 2008 is a first-of-its-kind election “war room” at the Rideau Institute to track the parties and the reporters covering them, providing us with high-level intelligence and the ability to make strategic interventions in the election campaign.

It lists as its participants these (in some cases) left-wing, and in some cases full-on, publicly declared socialist organizations (such as CAW), and those sympathetic to the Palestinian side of the war against Israel, and left-wing or far-left-wing causes generally: 

Assembly of First Nations (AFN)
Canadian Alliance of Student Associations (CASA)
Canadian Auto Workers (CAW)
Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE)
Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW)
Communications Energy and Paperworkers Union (CEP)
Consumers Council of Canada (CCC)
Living Oceans Society (LOS)
Option Consomateurs
Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada (PIPSC)
Union des consommateurs

Furthermore, they list as their “clients”, these organizations, some of which are left-wing and far-left-wing groups:

David Suzuki Foundation
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
Council of Canadians
Living Oceans Society
Canadian Pugwash Group
Pugwash Peace Exchange
Abolition 2000
Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada


I mentioned Stephen Staples, whom the “institute” lists as the Director, when he was appearing regularly on the CBC and the CTV news channels as a totally objective and neutral “expert”,  in a blog entry called “CTV masquerades a far-leftist anti-war advocate as “just another expert” on Afghanistan war”, in July of 2007:

The “Rideau Institute” web site is not working, so there’s an affiliated site in which it is mentioned that Steven Staples got his inspiration from the far-leftist George Soros-funded MoveOn.org left-wing smear site.  And that tells you just about all you need to know. 

image It features little teaser pictures like the one at left.

…Ceasefire.ca is a project of the Rideau Institute on International Affairs, a public policy research and advocacy group based in Ottawa. Ceasefire.ca is the institute’s main public outreach and advocacy arm.

The Polaris Institute created Ceasefire.ca in 2003 to prevent Canada from joining the U.S. Ballistic Missile Defence program, although the name itself dates back to the earlier campaign to stop the invasion of Iraq. Its founders are Steven Staples and Peter Coombes. Their goal, inspired by successful web-based organizations such as Moveon.org, is to provide a web-based tool for citizen action on government policies.

Since its inception, Ceasefire.ca has played crucial roles in many campaigns, including preventing Canada from joining George W. Bush’s “Star Wars” missile defence program. As well, it has pushed Canadian politicians of all stripes to oppose the war in Afghanistan, allow U.S. war resisters to stay in Canada, ban deadly cluster bombs, abolish nuclear weapons, prevent the weaponization of space, and take action on other important issues.

Many well-known supporters of Ceasefire.ca have endorsed its campaigns over the years, including David Suzuki, Maude Barlow, Matthew Good, Mel Hurtig, Helen Caldicott, Tom Hayden, Mel Watkins, and Murray Dobbin.

…Ceasefire.ca is a network of more than 15,000 Canadians who want Canada to be a world leader for peace, disarmament, and social justice.

Ceasefire.ca has a blog too of course.  The latest entry:  Help Stop Harper’s War Agenda—by Steven Staples.

This is a group that the CBC chooses not to inform you is left-wing, and instead chooses to mislead you, misinform you, and pull the wool over your eyes, and present to you as totally neutral and objective

CBC has introduced Steven Staples in the past as such:

“Steven Staples is director of the Rideau Institute on International Affairs—it’s an independent think tank”.

Today CBC Newsworld anchor Nancy Wilson introduced him exactly like this:

”…The parliamentary budget officer is due to table his report in about twenty minutes’ time.  CBC Newsworld will broadcast that live for you. In the meantime, we’re looking at one group’s estimates of the cost, through to the end of the mission, in 2011.  The Rideau Institute says it will be $20.7 billion.  Anthony Salloum is the institute’s program director, and he joins us from Ottawa.  So Anthony Salloum how did you come to the number $20.7 billion for the overall cost to the mission all the way up to 2011?”

Yet the CBC’s mandate includes this statement regarding “GUEST COMMENTATORS” in its section on accountability:

“Any relevant aspects of a commentator’s credentials must be clearly summarized so that the audience may have a perspective from which to appraise the speaker’s view. For example, the position and affiliation of a journalist or the particular qualifications of an academic or any other type of speaker should be stated.”

Complain to CBC here:



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