Raw Milk’s Media Shadow

Global TV Crew interviews Farmshare mom at the Newmarket rally

Here’s wondering whether at least some major media have been spoken to, either by their corporate masters, or by other shadowy figures that lurk behind the scenes and orchestrate the media circus.

Notably at the March 16th rally in Newmarket — with the biggest turnout ever of supporters and with the prospect of lots of photogenic attractions including the on-site milking of a cow, kids and families, and placards, and the prospect of raw milk facing criminalization for the first time — not many local media sent reporters or camera crews.

This is in stark contrast to the situation just a few years ago, when we’d see representation from CBC-TV, the Toronto Star, the Globe and Mail, The National Post and the Canadian Press — none of whom took an interest in the latest developments in the ongoing raw milk saga. Or did I miss some stories that did appear. Please post links in the comments if you know of some.

Kudos at least to Global TV for covering the event for their nightly newscast.

And let’s not forget that TVO has recently done a mini-doc on raw milk, and though it didn’t include anything from the Newmarket rally, TVO producer Liane Kotler was present throughout the day’s events.

So is it paranoia to think there might be some news-blackout conspiracy going on, to shut this issue out of the public consciousness this time around, or did the event organizers just do a not-that-great job with their press releases?




Filed under News

11 responses to “Raw Milk’s Media Shadow

  1. You might try some of the hosts here, to get some publicity:


  2. moosemeadows

    Or maybe, news outlets have gotten more background info then they had before and are choosing to not play along. Eventually the truth catches up!

  3. Franky

    Or maybe the media didn’t feel the public’s interest was there to warrant coverage.

  4. Carol

    There is the same lack of coverage regarding Industrial Wind Turbines. TVO has also covered it, showing a couple of documentaries as well as interviews but always seem to manage to have a negative slant that would make their money makers happy.
    The Premier refuses to meet and her and the Minister responsible continues to report untruths and the media obliges with being their puppet. Sun News was the only Media outlet that covered both the Raw milk and Industrial Turbine issue in a meaningful way in my opinion.

  5. just a reader

    There is no conspiracy here. The most likely explanation is the fact that in a major urban area, unless at least several thousand people attend, a rally is usually not considered “newsworthy” by the press. Especially if rallies on the same issue were held in the past.

    If 10,000+ people had come out, then more of the media would likely have been there. It might have been “newsworthy.” Again, no guarantees that any news agency had a free reporter to send that day.

    The only “news story” here, unfortunately, was the general lack of support for raw milk, evidenced by the fact that only several hundred people showed up, when Greater Toronto has a population base of 6 million and southern Ontario 12 million to draw from. 😦

    But even then, rallies are *not* an effective tool for changing the law, and isn’t the ultimate goal to change Ontario law? Or, am I jumping to conclusions about Ontario?

    • The mainstream media is VERY controlled the world over, and nothing usually happens by accident. You have seen the recent revelations from the German press stating that they have been totally controlled by the CIA since the world wars?

      • Tom Johnston

        To see all media reporting/reports that are not in line with our subjective values / goals as being a conspiracy against such is probably a telling sign of a bias, rather than an objective contemplation/consideration of facts. I believe ‘just a reader’ made a very valid point about the lack of attendance at the rally. Is it possible the media is simply not feeling the public’s interest here? Is the bias that the government/media is here to screw us over, or something? If so, why was there so much media coverage for Michael’s previous kick at the can? I mean, why didn’t they conspire to squash that?
        Anyway, this is pointless to argue… Tom out.

    • Tom Johnston

      I believe you may have hit on the core issue: isn’t the ultimate goal to change Ontario law? Well, officially Michael has said that he is without agenda. And nothing appears to have been proffered by Michael, et al, to suggest what the law should be. Michael says he’s been trying to work with the government for over 22 years, and yet he declares war (rawmilkwar), makes a declaration of what our rights are, publicly ridicules officials, and ridicules the government as a whole.
      I get it. It is easy to complain. It is great for getting others on the band wagon. It is, however, a whole other matter to state what is wanted. I believe if truth be told, even after more than 22 years, it seems he still doesn’t know what is wanted. I keep hoping that one day he’ll come out and say it. Not the usual avoidance of the issue with ambiguous political circular argument/reasoning/rhetoric/diarrhea. But just a simple, right on point, statement of intent/goal.
      Anyway, that’s just my mental diarrhea 😉

      • I also hazard a guess that a large part of the Ontario raw milk community will not take any course of action which would contradict Michael’s wishes, out of a strong sense of loyalty to him. If Michael does not want laws to change, then they are not going to ask government to change the law.

        Is this the correct assessment? If so, then what proportion of the raw milk community would you estimate takes this position, Tom?

      • Tom Johnston

        @ just a reader
        Not sure the issue here is loyalty, fear, or a lack of knowing what to do. But yes, I would say others won’t step forward to take the lead so long as Michael is on the scene…
        As for “the raw milk community”, I would divide that into consumers and producers.
        Consumers don’t really know or care much about the details (the politics, or the law). They just want the milk.
        As for producers, they don’t want to stick their neck out and put a target on their back. Michael’s rhetoric about “losing the farm”, and “fighting for 22 years”, and “endless court battles”, and “criminalizing raw milk” has probably had a significant effect on other producers to either stay out or stay low.
        The vast majority of the consumers support Michael because “he is doing something”. It doesn’t matter to them the means, and it doesn’t matter the end, so long as they get their product. I would suggest that when he says “we’re not going in there to get permission, we’re going to demand a right”, it goes in the consumers’ one ear, sounds good (doesn’t matter the content), and goes out the other, and then they cheer.
        As for producers, most would probably support Michael because he appears to be fighting to get the government to just leave them alone. But it has been my experience that they too (producers who support Michael) lack appreciation for the details and consequences, and can’t state what is wanted (other than to be left alone).
        On the whole, I would say it is all just a lack of clarity. No clarity on the boundaries and processes. No clarity if they should be pursuing a legal or political solution.

  6. Tom: “But it has been my experience that they too (producers who support Michael) lack appreciation for the details and consequences, and can’t state what is wanted (other than to be left alone).”

    Agreed. And it is wishful thinking that you will be left alone when you are conducting regulated activities (selling, distributing, etc.) with a regulated commodity (milk). Or, to back up a step, any food product, given the current wording of the Farm Products Marketing Act:

    “2. The purpose of this Act is to provide for the control and regulation in any or all aspects of the producing and marketing within Ontario of farm products including the prohibition of such producing or marketing in whole or in part.”

    ” ‘farm product’ means animals, meats, eggs, poultry, wool, dairy products, grains, seeds, fruit, fruit products, vegetables, vegetable products, maple products, honey, tobacco, wood, or any class or part of any such product, and articles of food or drink manufactured or derived in whole or in part from any such product, and such other natural products of agriculture as are designated in the regulations, and, for the purposes of this Act, fish shall be deemed to be a farm product; ”

    ” ‘marketing’ includes advertising, assembling, buying, financing, offering for sale, packing, processing, selling, shipping, storing and transporting ”

    Governments expect that citizens will educate themselves about the laws which apply to them and their business operations, and have made it simple for anyone with an internet connection to do so, i.e. all Ontario laws are on both the Government of Ontario website at https://www.ontario.ca/laws and CanLII website at http://www.canlii.org/.

    If we do not like a law, then it is up to us to do the hard work of getting it changed. First though, people have to learn about the laws which apply to them, and then form a consensus on what exact amendments they want to see made. They also need to create an organization to represent them with a single voice at the boardroom table in face-to-face negotiations with government representatives. These are the very first steps if changing the law is the end goal.

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