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Bruce Dowbiggin

Talk To Me: Turn Up The Stars, Turn Down The Booth Jockeys

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We are not Formula1 experts here at IDLM, but we do like Drive To Survive, the Netflix TV series that follows the travelling circus that is F1. We won’t try to criticize what happened in the final laps Sunday at Abu Dhabi.

Except to say perennial Mercedes champion Lewis Hamilton may have been hosed by F1 officials, handing the title to Dutchman Max Verstappen (who’s been one of the stars of DTS). After a  crash by Nicholas Latifi triggered a restart on the final lap of the race, Verstappen caught and passed the Mercedes of Hamilton, who was struggling on worn tires with less grip.

On the broadcast Mercedes boss Toto Wolff could be heard screaming at F1 official Michael Masi over the radio.” Michael! Michael! You have to go back a lap,” Wolff said, saying the results should count from only the lap before the Safety Car came in. Masi replied: “Toto … Toto … this is a motor race.”

There will likely be endless protestations and appeals of the decision. Was it fair? We can’t say. What is true, however is that F1’s use of live driver audio during the race gave viewers a unique insight into the tension and exultation of the participants. This candid commentary is one of the selling points of F1.

Verstappen was hearing exulting, “Oh my God, oh my God” on the radio as he won, later saying to his Red Bull team: “It’s insane … can we do this for another 10 or 15 years together.”

As we wrote in I’m All Ears: Let Athletes Have Their Say in September this year, “The success of Netflix’s F1 documentary series Drive To Survive is a perfect example of the public’s demand for the inner sanctum of sport. Drive To Survive has plenty of the Nuke LaLoosh blarney from athletes and owners. But it also has enough free-wheeling about the bitchiness between drivers, the headaches of team managers and some of the greatest video from the pits to intrigue even the least serious fans.

“We have long resisted the excitement of F1 and other motor sports— in spite of the live driver/ pits audio provided. It was difficult— especially when covering the racing for a living— to reconcile sport with people you’d interviewed dying on the track. But F1 has managed to make the driving less lethal. Following the death of legend Ayrton Senna in 1994 measures were introduced to slow the cars, including bodywork aerodynamic limitations, a pit-lane speed limit and grooved tires… While there are still spectacular crashes captured in Drive To Survive, this allows the focus to be less on the fatal history of the circuit and more on the current star power of the sport.

“So cameras and microphones capture owners threatening to fire drivers, drivers telling each other to go “suck balls”, rivals acting like scorned school boys after crashes. There is a brutal honesty about the financial travails of owners who are arrested and lose their teams (Force India) or sponsors (Haas) in midseason.

“In one Season 2 clip swaggering Aussie driver Daniel Riccadio laughingly calls the Netflix team “c**ts” and dares them to put the clip in the series. Clearly this has brought F1 a whole new audience of fans cooped up by Covid.

“Not everyone in F1 bought into this candour. The top two teams— Ferrari and Mercedes— were conspicuous by their absence from Year 1. But the overwhelming global success of the series convinced them to join in Year 2— although less eagerly than teams like Renault, Haas, Sauber and Williams.

“In short there is a huge appetite to hear as well as see the action. The NFL has broached it with the documentary series Hard Knocks, but in games players are largely silent. As we wrote in August 2018, they’ve got a ways to go before being like the CFL.

“For all the shade cast on the CFL, you have to give credit to the league and its exclusive broadcaster for having the nerve to defy the industry’s reluctance to go full-audio. In doing so they have stayed ahead of their cousins in the NFL on such technological and viewing innovations. The use of video replay to reverse (or call) penalties is the sort of insight that fans want— even if it makes coaches, GMs and owners blanch.

“Perhaps the best way to get the NFL, NHL, MSL and NBA to follow the CFL’s lead is to introduce a profit motive. As we’ve suggested for many years now, fans would probably be amenable to paying for a special channel with unlimited audio. Pay a special fee on top of your NHL Centre Ice or NFL Red Zone subscription and get full live audio from games. 

“The effect might be like what happened when Hollywood converted from silent to talkies. Instead of scandal they’d have a new generation of viewers interested in their product. You can just see the promotion: ‘Fans, you’ve have seen their favourite sports stars for years. Now hear them live for the first time’.

It’s just crazy enough to work. But that’s the CFL. Sometimes it’s crazy like a fox.”

The CFL might have gotten carried away with audio by bringing the lead singer of the Arkells into the broadcast booth during the fourth-quarter tension at Sunday’s Grey Cup. But that annoying blip aside they’re generally on the right track. We can only hope the other sports lift the shroud at join F1 in letting its all hang out.

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

Big Can Be Beautiful. It Can Also Take Your Life

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When we go to our local swimming pool there is ample evidence of the fat of the land (including your correspondent). The display of plus-sized pork among our fellow swimmers (most 50+) is breathtaking. The Parnassus of lard has to be the 60-ish gentleman who wears a Speedo on his 375-pound-plus body as he swims laps. We assume there’s a Speedo in there somewhere, captured by rolling mounds of cellulite on his glutes.

While alarming to see so many who’ve lost the battle to fat, at least these souls are making the attempt to stay healthy. God bless them. When we see them lower themselves into the pool we have to wonder at those who’ve completely given up on the concept of a healthy figure. How do they live?

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. (The magazine also features Elon Musk’s mother and four NBA models in the edition).

This comes at a time when plus-sized rapper Cardi B has made highly sexualized twerking a thing in her graphic videos. It seems to now be hip to placate people who’ve lost the battle against Cheetos in a masturbatory celebration of a blubbery freedom.

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 and 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 while pleasuring hetero men. 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 rulers— 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). 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

 

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Bruce Dowbiggin

Trudeau’s Pandemic Accord: Selling Canada By The Pound

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“The #PandemicAccord process is at the very beginning of a multiyear Member State led negotiation, which will only be finalised in 2024 after multiple public hearings around the world. And all voices will be heard”–@DrTedros WHO

Some are born great. Some have greatness thrust upon them. Then there’s Justin Trudeau, the Trust Fund Fruit-Loop. You know you’re out of your depth. Worse, you know that everyone else knows you’re out of your depth. You know that they know you have a resumé thinner than consommé. You have multiple skeletons hidden back at the ski chalet. They only want you for your name.

So what do you do to win respect? You rent yourself out to the fashionable, the witty wind therapists, the glib retainers of the media. The unelected armies of NGOs and Davos cowboys who live off free money and private jets. The positively furious grad-school Marxists.

“Make me into a man,” cried Pinnochio. “Not this wooden son of Margaret Trudeau that I am now.” So his handlers got to the work of making chicken salad from chicken… er,  stuff.

Making the Pinocchio conversion much easier was how a tattered Liberal Party, the party his father had helped to crater, was looking around for something, anything, to retrieve their hustle from the dread Stephen Harper. So Trudeau literally threw himself into the arms of the calculating Cape Breton fixer Gerald Butts and a coterie of Kinsey-style influencers and leeches.

Using Justin’s coming-out performance as the sobbing son at Papa Pierre’s casket, they put him on a trajectory to dominate Instagram and eTalk. The urban hives of Vancouver, Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal were tired of apologizing to their progressive pals elsewhere for a leader who wore sans-a-belt pants and gloried in policy. The Hill Media Party wanted someone with a little sizzle.

His fixers’ only instruction? “Shut you mouth and keep your hands to yourself.” This proved difficult for Justin. But an acquiescent media corps buried his sexual faux pas faster than Hunter Biden burying his meth lab.

So Justin boxed the hapless Patrick Brazeau to firm up his macho bonafides. He did cupcake photo apps with his soon-to-be-estranged wife in glossy U.S. periodicals. He stopped openly dreaming of the Communist Chinese government model. Voilà. Trudeau the Younger won the prize.

Ensconced as PM, Justin resorted to his entitled past, taking free trips from the Aga Khan, getting jiggy with a female reporter, calling off the Mounties’ investigating Quebec’s SNC Lavalin. And sucking up big time to the global elites by destroying Canada’s energy industry. Always protected by media he’d paid off in advance.

To make up for lost Liberal seats in future elections he recruited the hapless Jagmeet Singh and his NDP faculty club into a non-aggression pact. He was free to embrace all the fashionable frippery of the Woke radicals. With another term— and Singh— in hand it came time last fall to pay off his real constituents: the Reset Regime. The suits who give him gravitas. Luminaries such as WEF honcho Klaus Schwab, who bragged at having “penetrated” Trudeau’s cabinet.

Enter the WHO’s wildly ambitious Pandemic Accord. Never heard of it?

According to WHO director-general Dr. Tedros, the Chinese puppet running the WHO, the Pandemic Accord is an urgent project. ”The last few years have taught us about our own collective fragility and the threat to economies and security of not working together… The essence of the proposed #PandemicAccord is to improve cooperation, coordination, and the sharing of data, information, biological materials and lifesaving tools.”

If you’re looking to parse that word salad, rest assured that the Pandemic Accord will not be consulting local knowledge the next time a virus rolls through. It will be “one size fits all” lockdowns, vaccines and travel restrictions mandated in Europe. And the funding for the Accord will be a sinkhole, not unlike the current UN.

(If you’re thinking this surrender of sovereignty is just a Justin thing, 154 other sheep nations have also signed up for this “1984” tribute. Australia’s PM Scott Morrison sums up the enthusiasm for Covid Kool-Aid on the pandemic treaty: “The WHO should have those powers and authorities,” he announced. For an intellectual non-entity like Trudeau this is a train he needs to get on board. He’ll get to hang with the big guys.)

Now if you haven’t heard of the Pandemic Accord, you’re not alone. Because it has the power to upset naïve citizens, the arrival of this monstrosity has been covered up by the war in Ukraine. Wondering if the Bono was why Trudeau kept flying to Ukraine? In part, yes.

But he was also meeting with European leaders and global financiers about the Accord and handing over sovereignty to unelected suits. And how he can get a piece of the action when he leaves the PMO. You didn’t know his stint as PM was simply a job application to hanging with the globalist crowd? What are you, a trucker? Shame on you.

While Skippy is burnishing his CV in Europe, in his home province the Quebec government has decided now is the time to squeeze non-Francophones again. “Bill 96 would impose tougher language requirements on small businesses and companies in federally regulated industries, such as banking and telecommunications, as well as governments and schools.

If passed, companies with 25 employees or more would be subject to “francization” — government certification that use of French is generalized in the workplace — down from 50 currently. The bill also assigns new powers to the French language watchdog and sets tighter language rules for professional orders.

The cost for a roughly 50-employee company would range between $9.5 million and $23.5 million, according to estimates from the Canadian Federation of Independent Business. The bill is expected to pass before the legislature breaks for the summer.”

It’ll all be fuelled by a snitch culture that turns neighbours against each other and on companies. To help Premier François Legault navigate any legal or Charter issues, the PM has said they’ll move the deck chairs so it can pass without a problem.

But that and soaring gas prices is all just a sideshow for Trudeau. The big action— and respect— lies in Europe. And he can’t wait for you to give him a lucrative send-off.

 

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

 

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