‘Force Canadians to pay us,’ free-market Sun News asks CRTC

There is something deliciously ironic about free-market ideologues asking a government commission to force consumers to buy their product.

Kory Teneycke, former Harper flak and SunNews VP turned government handout seeker

Kory Teneycke, former Harper flak and SunNews VP turned government handout seeker

That’s what SunNews, the right-wing Canadian cable news channel, is asking the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission.

SunNews has been a dud in the market. Canadians have chosen not to watch what’s often called Fox News North. So the tax-and-spend hypocrits at Sun want to force-feed us by getting the CRTC to require cable companies to put them in the basic cable package, a notion called mandatory carriage.

If the CRTC agrees, the Fox North flop would get a piece of every Canadian cable subscriber’s basic feeā€”like it or not. In an Orwellian twist, Sun calls this government enforced revenue grab, “choice.”

The CRTC should make short work of this nonsense, but in the age of Harper, who can say what it will do?

The deadline for sending the CRTC a comment on the FoxNews application has passed, but there’s still time to sign an online petition by Avaaz, a left-leaning citizen advocacy organization. In six months of TV pitches, SunNews gathered 53,000 signatures on a petition of support. Avaaz wants to “blow that number out of the water” in six days.

You can sign here.

[Disclosure: I do a some work for Seaside High Speed, whose sister company, Seaside Communications, runs a small cable system in New Waterford and Glace Bay. I have no idea whether Seaside carries SunNews, or what its views on the SunNew application might be.]