Independent media needs you. Join the Tyee.

The Hook: Political news, freshly caught

Levant's latest rant about Tyee 'dead wrong' says editor

Right-wing television host Ezra Levant spent some of his May 9 Sun TV program making false claims about The Tyee.

"I'd rather not respond to demagoguery, but false statements need to be corrected so here goes," said Tyee editor David Beers. "Levant knows that no charitable money went to fund the video satirizing his tobacco lobbyist past and oil sands support, made by Kai Nagata and others and published on The Tyee. Levant asked weeks ago if it had, and I told him then, point blank, that it had not." That statement of fact was sent to Levant and published on The Tyee the next day, March 20. "Yet Levant has repeated his falsehood again," said Beers.

The Tyee and the non-profit Tyee Solutions Society have received contracts from Tides Canada and other philanthropic groups to carry out journalism projects that are non-partisan and provide public education, "and those projects are clearly labeled on The Tyee and proudly so -- a number have won awards," said Beers. "They are carried out legally and transparently in accordance with the laws of Canada. Levant is dead wrong in claiming anything different," said Beers.

The satirical video Levant made false claims about on May 9 was content that came about in a wholly different way, Beers said. Nagata whipped up the video with a creative team outside The Tyee, and proposed The Tyee publish it. At the time Nagata was receiving a stipend as Tyee writer in residence that is paid for internally and without any connection to charitable-funded projects, Beers said. No other Tyee money went into the making of the video.

"Newspapers have cartoon pages, and they also have their public interest in-depth features. We know the difference. Levant surely does, too. But he willfully ignores that The Tyee might run both kinds of content, and circumspectly pay for them in different ways," Beers said.

Find more in:

What have we missed? What do you think? We want to know. Comment below. Keep in mind:


  • Verify facts, debunk rumours
  • Add context and background
  • Spot typos and logical fallacies
  • Highlight reporting blind spots
  • Ignore trolls
  • Treat all with respect and curiosity
  • Connect with each other

Do not:

  • Use sexist, classist, racist or homophobic language
  • Libel or defame
  • Bully or troll
  • Troll patrol. Instead, flag suspect activity.
comments powered by Disqus