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Bruce Dowbiggin

Hockey Canada’s Own Goal: Burying The Lawsuit

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Why in the name of Aurel Joliat would a sports organization want to put itself in the hands of the McHale’s Navy of governments? Namely, Justin Trudeau’s faculty lounge. But that’s what Hockey Canada has done. Its neglect and incompetence in a recent sexual assault allegation against members of the 2018 WJC champion team seems to have been asking for trouble.

Hockey Canada’s access to public funds (HC gets 6 percent of its funds from the government) is now frozen by the federal government, effective immediately, over its response to the alleged sexual assault and a subsequent out-of-court settlement last month after a woman claimed she was assaulted by members of the country’s 2018 gold-medal winning world junior hockey team in June of that year at a gala in London, Ont.

And why, after the Chicago Blackhawks sexual abuse scandal that surfaced last year,  has the NHL once again been shown incompetent in dealing with a sexual assault allegation? Twenty-two members of the 2017-18 junior squad in question were NHL draft picks. While we don’t know the eight in question one only has to peruse the roster of that team to realize a number of the players are stars in the NHL at the moment.

In the absence of evidence otherwise, all members of that team are under suspicion. (The woman, who decided against speaking with police or HC investigators, chose not to identify the players.) CBC reports, “The woman, now 24, was seeking $3.55 million in damages from Hockey Canada, the Canadian Hockey League and the unnamed players. Details of the settlement have not been made public”.

Which looks bad enough on the organization trusted to handle both men’s and women’s hockey in this country. But then the HC suits appeared in front of a House of Commons committee to throw a little accelerant on the fire. Outgoing HC chairman Tom Renney told MPs that HC had hired an outside law firm in 2018 to help it with the allegation that— so far— has produced no criminal charges.

HC president Scott Smith— who said Sport Canada had been notified of the allegation in 2019— testified, “players present at the event in London were ‘strongly encouraged’ to participate, but it was not mandated. (Renney initially testified that between four and six of the 19 players in question spoke with investigators before Smith indicated later the number was 12 or 13.)  He added that HC does not know the identity of the eight John Does listed in the lawsuit.

Needless to say the voluntary nature of testimony caused heads to explode among the politicians. “We were all expecting answers to all the questions, the many questions, that we have regarding how they handled the whole situation when they testified,” Sport Minister Pascal St. St-Onge told reporters. “Unfortunately, we did not receive many answers… But we did learn a few things.”

Such as HC saying that public funds (HC got $ 14 M. From the feds in 2020-21) had not been used to settle the lawsuit. St. Onge was not mollified. And so funding was frozen pending a forensic audit and fuller explanations of the HC’s handling of the incident.  “The fact that they haven’t been identified sort of shocks me,” added Liberal MP Anthony Housefather, a member of the committee.

HC might have predicted the volatility of the allegations. Previous sexual abuse cases such as former coach Graham James’ abuse of Theo Fleury, Sheldon Kennedy and others in the 1980s produced national outrage— and HC protocols on how to deal with future incidents.  While it appears that HC followed some protocols of conducting an independent investigation, the revelation that players involved were not compelled to testify beggars the imagination.

With the euphoria of the Stanley Cup, Memorial Cup and IIHF World Championships now dissipating, hard questions need to be asked. The innocent should have the shroud removed from their reputations. Those who sought anonymity in the lawsuit need to face NHL sanctions. And Hockey Canada needs to  understand yet again that carrying the flag for Canada in world hockey only covers them so far.

 

Bruce Dowbiggin @dowbboy is the editor of Not The Public Broadcaster (http://www.notthepublicbroadcaster.com). The best-selling author was nominated for the BBN Business Book award of 2020 for Personal Account with Tony Comper. A two-time winner of the Gemini Award as Canada’s top television sports broadcaster, he’s also a regular contributor to Sirius XM Canada Talks Ch. 167. His new book with his son Evan Inexact Science: The Six Most Compelling Draft Years In NHL History is now available on http://brucedowbigginbooks.ca/book-personalaccount.aspx

BRUCE DOWBIGGIN Award-winning Author and Broadcaster Bruce Dowbiggin's career is unmatched in Canada for its diversity and breadth of experience . He is currently the editor and publisher of Not The Public Broadcaster website and is also a contributor to SiriusXM Canada Talks. His new book Cap In Hand was released in the fall of 2018. Bruce's career has included successful stints in television, radio and print. A two-time winner of the Gemini Award as Canada's top television sports broadcaster for his work with CBC-TV, Mr. Dowbiggin is also the best-selling author of "Money Players" (finalist for the 2004 National Business Book Award) and two new books-- Ice Storm: The Rise and Fall of the Greatest Vancouver Canucks Team Ever for Greystone Press and Grant Fuhr: Portrait of a Champion for Random House. His ground-breaking investigations into the life and times of Alan Eagleson led to his selection as the winner of the Gemini for Canada's top sportscaster in 1993 and again in 1996. This work earned him the reputation as one of Canada's top investigative journalists in any field. He was a featured columnist for the Calgary Herald (1998-2009) and the Globe & Mail (2009-2013) where his incisive style and wit on sports media and business won him many readers.

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Bruce Dowbiggin

CTV: Thanks For Everything, Lisa. Not Really. Just Leave

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In 2015, actress Amy Schumer did a skit that lampooned women aging in Hollywood. In it Schumer comes upon Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Patricia Arquette and Tina Fey having a picnic in the woods. Schumer discovers that they’re celebrating Louis-Deyfus’ last day as a “f-able” actress in Hollywood.

It’s that momentous occasion when Hollywood decides “you’re not believably f–kable anymore,” explains Louis-Dreyfus. “You know how Sally Field was Tom Hanks‘ love interest in Punchline, and then, like 20 minutes later, she was his mom in Forrest Gump?” Fey says. Signs of being “un-f-able” any longer are arriving on-set to find that your wardrobe is just a bunch of long sweaters. Or — the clincher — auditioning for Mrs. Claus.

Lisa LaFlamme knows that feeling. She got the long sweaters six weeks ago. The award-winning 58-year-old went from the top news reader at CTV News to “the woman who preceded Omar Sachedina” in about 20 minutes. Worse, the CTV heavy thinkers informed her to keep it under her hat for about six weeks.

No Lloyd Robertson adios. No Craig Oliver long goodbye. Just, don’t let the studio door hit you on the way out. Nice. As double standards go this was a brutal.

Rumours abound as to why the CTV News chiefs and their Bell bosses made the move against the highly rated bingo caller. Likely they looked at demographics. Saw Lisa was boffo with Boomers, but Gen X and Millennials didn’t know her from Sally Field. Then she let her hair go grey. Worse, she was an unrepentantly white birthing person.

Bell is headed more in the direction of black TSN sportscaster Kayla Grey, who turns to social media to confess she’s “fearful” reporting stories about this week’s World Men’s Junior Hockey Championships. Kayla’s worried doing her job objectively will bring her scorn . “I feel icky and gross,” she laments, her heart breaking with each “he shoots, he scores” she’s forced to utter. You can’t make this stuff up.

So hellllo, Omar. Who may not be well known beyond family and friends, but at least he’s not white, icky or gross. And so CTV went ESG to fix a problem they don’t have. The Globe & Mail reported that “CTV National News ratings have fallen slightly this year on a month-over-month basis, from numbers consistently over one million viewers from January through March, to average minute audiences above 900,000 throughout April, and above 800,000 from May through early August.” But they crush CBC.

Cruel firings are not unknown in broadcasting. Anyone in the business long enough has a horror story about a frog-march with the box of possessions at 9:30 A.M.— escorted by security. It was just thought that someone with LaFlamme’s pedigree would at least get a consolation prize and a lunch. Guess not.

It was also believed that, being a good liberal woman, LaFlamme had also built up enough Woke credits to avoid the Paths of Glory ending. But as we wrote after the death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg in September of 2020, white liberal women are discovering that all their loyalty to Justin Trudeau and Hillary Clinton has only bought them a bitter cup of regret and dissatisfaction.

“How did this dissatisfaction occur? The second wave of feminists made common cause with the diversity left-wing, meaning victimhood first, last and always. So the movement went from the joys of bra-burning, sexual freedom and a hedonistic script to the tedious chore of finding oppression in every corner of their personal and professional lives. (See: Anita Hill)

They found disappointment in men’s cavalier response to their new sexual liberation— epitomized by Donald Trump’s “grab them by the pussy” and Bill Clinton’s libertine hooks-ups. Available women found themselves disposable women in the free-for-all of sexual freedom. In changing the standard sexual permission from No to Yes, it told men that a woman now had to explain why she was not obliging when sex was in the offing.

Free abortion meant no lingering responsibility for men. If you believe Christine Blasey Ford, it left women broken 30 years later. As Erica Jong defined it— the zipless fuck.

Author Heather Mac Donald describes in her book The Diversity Delusion how women have now, in response, retreated from the hedonistic Sex In The City of the 1970s and 80s to Victorian standards for ceding sexual permission to men. “Liberated” feminists are now assigning men all the responsibility— and hence blame—  for any sexual encounters gone wrong. “So get drunk, spend the night with a stranger, have a relationship end badly— none of it is the fault of the “modern” woman.,” writes Mac Donald.

That abdication of women’s responsibility, says author Camille Paglia, extends to the politics of the office. “What troubles me about the ‘hostile workplace’ category of sexual harassment policy is that women are being returned to their former status of delicate flowers who must be protected from assault by male lechers.” writes Paglia. “Women infantilize themselves when they cede responsibility for sexual encounters to men or after-the-fact grievance committees”.  

Worse, having joined Team Victim, women have discovered that while they may gain equality with men, they have been placed miles behind other grievance groups in the Woke hit parade. While a women must, in Hillary Clinton’s words, always be believed in any “he said/ she said”, this blanket exemption does not apply when a white women is in conflict with many other political flavours of the day. In the wrong equation even devoted feminists can find themselves accused of white privilege or cultural appropriation. 

And, if you’re a conservative woman, you’re placed at the back on virtually every pecking order in the political sphere. So, as Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s accomplishments are lionized it will be measured against the impact on women who’ve allowed the radical wing of feminism to make them more like Margaret Atwood’s  Handmaid’s Tale than Helen Reddy’s I Am Woman.”

So far, 4.3 million people watched LaFlamme’s online goodbye. Maybe that will bring her comfort— even if it doesn’t bring back her job.

Bruce Dowbiggin @dowbboy is the editor of Not The Public Broadcaster (http://www.notthepublicbroadcaster.com). A two-time winner of the Gemini Award as Canada’s top television sports broadcaster, he’s a regular contributor to Sirius XM Canada Talks Ch. 167. Inexact Science: The Six Most Compelling Draft YearsIn NHL History, , his new book with his son Evan, was voted the eighth best professional hockey book of by bookauthority.org . His 2004 book Money Players was voted seventh best, and is available via http://brucedowbigginbooks.ca/book-personalaccount.aspx

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Bruce Dowbiggin

Find This Beautiful? It Probably Depends On How You Vote

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Today’s children are 30% less aerobically fit than their parents were at their age, a new study (has) found. The study points to climate change and rising temperatures adversely affecting childhood obesity, as children spend less time exercising outdoors.— CBS News

Nice that CBS cares about obesity. Predicably, they tie it to their pet obsession of climate change. Just another indication that even when something deserves attention it must be tortured beyond all logic by the credentialed cliques.

For proof how far this can go look only to Friday’s release by the U.S. Center For Disease Control that announced— Jumpin’ Jehosaphat!—non-vaccinated people should have the same protocols as vaccinated people. Kids can stay in classes after being exposed to the virus. And screening is no longer necessary for this without symptoms.

The admission that non-vaxxed are not the scourge of society or students not a vector for infection would have had you fired from your job by Justin Trudeau or banned from social media giants just a year ago. Today? Meh. Those waiting for apologies or getting their job back had better get a chair. Could be a while.

But social stigmatizing of the unclean has become routine in the age of 21 genders and travel bans. Debunking centuries of Judea-Christian learning and tradition is a party game for the Stephen Colbert set. (Remember when comedians made jokes, not lists of those to be cast into hell?)

Which brings us back to obesity. In May we noted that, far from it being a problem, it was now body affirming when practiced by the correct people. Even if obese people constituted the largest risk group for Covid-19.

“The notion of what constitutes a beautiful body is in the news again as Sports Illustrated featured plus-sized model Yumi Nu on the cover of its annual swimsuit edition. The swimsuit edition is the annual display of beautiful female bodies that traditionally sent nuns and librarians into a censorship fury worthy of Twitter. (And found its way between the mattresses of teenaged boys.)

In what is clearly Woke symbolism, Time Warner’s magazine is attempting to placate  another stigmatized group— plus-sized women— by displaying Nu in all her rounded beauty. “See, it’s normal to be wearing XXX-sized clothing” is the message.

Canadian author/ psychologist Dr. Jordan Peterson spoke for those not amused by SI’s project: “Sorry. Not beautiful. And no amount of authoritarian tolerance is going to change that. It’s a conscious progressive attempt to manipulate & retool the notion of beauty, reliant on the idiot philosophy that such preferences are learned & properly changed by those who know better.”

But there was a cascade of approval for SI’s choice, recognizing that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Many found Nu stunning and sexy. Feminists applauded her acceptance of bodaciousness.  Fair enough.

Two quibbles. One small and the other massive. First— this will be lost on feminists— the SI Swimsuit edition was created in the 1960s to defeat a stereotype that fit sportswomen were tomboys, unattractive and vaguely butch. In their own way, the early SI models destroyed those stereotypes. They convinced women that muscles aren’t a bringdown.

The more significant point— lost on SI and Time Warner— is that the time of Covid, with its choked hospitals and healthcare system, is hardly the moment to celebrate people who exceed their body-fat index. In fact it might be described as a reckless message that allows people with hereditary or cultural vulnerability to diabetes, stroke and heart attacks to put off weight reduction. 

As we wrote last October, obesity is the silent killer of millions infected with the virus. But one buried by governments, media and health authorities who decided to make vaccine-resisters the real villain of the piece.

“Friends and neighbours we have thought otherwise sane are now seriously demanding that unvaccinated people be sent to the back of the line for health care till all the vaccinated people are satisfied. This triage is equal measures of fear, spite and blithering ignorance of the facts of single-payer health. 

Take this example: one of the factors established very early in the pandemic was the vulnerability of obese and morbidly obese— especially in the elderly. The AMA reports, “The vast majority—78%—of U.S. patients hospitalized with COVID-19 were overweight or had obesity. The numbers for intensive care, invasive mechanical ventilation and death were nearly the same.”

According to the CDC, 42.4 percent of U.S. adults have obesity.  While some are obese for genetic or disease-related reasons, the vast proportion of the obesity is lifestyle induced. The World Obesity Federation has shown that death rates from COVID-19 have been 10 times higher in countries where more than half of the population is overweight.

Yet there is no call from the media and its acolytes to punish the obese for clogging the healthcare system. No demand they be put to the back of the line. Why? Because it doesn’t suit the narrative of right-wing extremism the way that non-vaxxers do. Too many allies of Woke land— in and out of politics— would be shoved down the line if fat were targeted.

University of Oxford researchers found, ”Excess weight is a modifiable risk factor, and investment in the treatment of overweight and obesity and long-term preventive strategies could help reduce the severity of COVID-19 disease.” 

Yet when was the last time you heard Justin Trudeau or president Joe Biden suggest dropping weight to lessen the burden on healthcare? The last time would be the first time, as they have been mute on lifestyle adaptions to clear the ICUs. 

It goes the same for smokers, drinkers, drug abusers and more who— under Canada’s healthcare rules— receive the same treatment in emergency rooms as do those who live clean. According to the howler monkeys of vaccine enforcement only non-vaxxers should be culled from the herd for flooding ICUs.”

It’s not the first time that Wokedom has stifled information contrary to their  societal control. It won’t be the last. In the battle of the bulge it’s not a fashion statement. It’s a matter of life and death. It’s also a matter of saving the healthcare system.”

Bruce Dowbiggin @dowbboy is the editor of Not The Public Broadcaster (http://www.notthepublicbroadcaster.com). A two-time winner of the Gemini Award as Canada’s top television sports broadcaster, he’s a regular contributor to Sirius XM Canada Talks Ch. 167. Inexact Science: The Six Most Compelling Draft YearsIn NHL History, , his new book with his son Evan, was voted the eighth best professional hockey book of by bookauthority.org . His 2004 book Money Players was voted seventh best, and is available via http://brucedowbigginbooks.ca/book-personalaccount.aspx

 

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