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The year of the feud

Yesterday, Quillblog pointed to the controversy sparked by Margaret Atwood when she added her name to a petition protesting the potential appearance of a right-wing news channel (sarcastically dubbed “Fox News North”) here in Canada. Atwood’s move has also roused the ire of Kory Teneycke, vice-president of development for Quebecor, the company that is trying to get the all-news channel, Sun TV, approved. (Teneycke is also, not incidentally, Stephen Harper’s former director of communications.)

In an article appearing in Sun Media newspapers today, Teneycke writes that in signing the petition “Atwood has put her political agenda ahead of principles and patriotism.” He proceeds to recall one of Atwood’s recent controversial political stances:

In the 2008 election campaign she was asked if she would vote for the separatist Bloc Quebecois if she lived in Quebec, she said: Yes. Absolutely. What is the alternative?


How about voting for someone who doesn’t advocate the breakup of the country?

He also mockingly points out that Atwood is not the only A-lister to sign her name to the petition:

Dwight Shroot (from The Office), Boba Fett (of Star Wars), Snuffaluffagus (Sesame Street) and Homer Simpson are also signatories. Clearly the CRTC should take note of such distinguished individuals lending their name to this smear job.

Rumours abound that Stephen Harper wants the CRTC chair, Konrad von Finckenstein, out by the end of the year and replaced by what Globe columnist Lawrence Martin refers to as “a rubber stamper.” Von Finckenstein’s tenure does not officially end until 2012.