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Mediacheck

Turn Andrew Nikiforuk Loose this Federal Election, Give Today

He's an old style journalist the powerful want muzzled. Canada needs his reporting.

By David Beers 9 Apr 2015 | TheTyee.ca

David Beers is founding editor of The Tyee.

[Editor's note: This appeal ran on April 9 and readers like you responded with more than $13,000 in a 24-hour period, all of which will go to Andrew Nikiforuk to support his coverage leading into and during the federal election.

The Tyee's journalism is increasingly supported by its readers who pledge financial contributions as Builders. Please help grow our election coverage fund by joining today. Thanks!!]

Andrew Nikiforuk is one of Canada's most brilliant and fearless journalists, piling up awards for his books on energy, the environment and politics.

He is eager to cover the coming federal election for The Tyee. But he needs the funds to travel and report as only he can.

Will you help us turn Andrew Nikiforuk loose at this vital moment for the future of our country? Back him by becoming a Tyee Builder today.

If you're looking to show the impact and necessity of independent media, Andrew is proof. In 2010 he came aboard The Tyee as writer in residence. He immediately blew the lid off Parliament's tarsands report cover-up, then racked up scoop after scoop in these pages, ranging from pipeline mismanagement by Enbridge and TransCanada to Harper's flawed China treaty and destruction of science libraries.

His stories get huge attention via social media, and have forced action in Parliament. So yes, it's a credit to The Tyee that Andrew publishes here. It's also a damning indictment of Canada's corporate media that it makes little home for the Andrew Nikiforuk byline. If you ask me, it's because corporate media's timid bosses fear that what Andrew exposes will scare off the oil and gas advertising dollars that fuel their publications. So this great journalist, to connect with Canadians, must rely on The Tyee. Without us, he'd be all but muzzled.

That's why The Tyee seeks election coverage funding from a quite different source: you. Reader funding gives The Tyee the power to publish truth tellers like Andrew Nikiforuk.

And with only four days to go to reach our target of $50,000, I am making a special appeal that you contribute today. Our pledge is that every dollar contributed over the next 24 hours will go to arm Andrew Nikiforuk to take on power and privilege this election year.

Please help us support Andrew's important work.

What will Andrew do with the resources you provide? I chatted with him on the phone from Calgary the other day, and he laid out his aims.

"I want to reveal and explain just what Stephen Harper has changed in this country and why since he became prime minister," Andrew told me. "Our judicial and prison system has changed. Our government has become less accountable and transparent. Environmental regulations have been trashed. Our fundamental freedoms have been eroded and all by an evangelical prime minister who, like many U.S. Republicans, harbours an extreme disdain for the role of government in society, an aversion to real evidence and an obscene reverence for oil companies.

"I'm not interested in 'regular' election coverage. There's no point to just counting the horses. Not now, when our political process is fundamentally broken. We live in pre-revolutionary times and I think most ordinary people get that things are fractured and that power is being abused on a frightening scale. So some of the reporting I'll be doing will be drawing connections to the decline of democracies around the world, the shrinkage of the middle class, which I belong to, and the increasing totalitarian discourse that new technologies foster. Most communication technologies used by political parties just weaken democracies... I'll be reporting around Canada, but with a global view, too."

Empowered by your contributions, Andrew wants to document Harper's style of leadership and draw bold connections. Hint: What do Stephen Harper and Vladimir Putin have in common?

Everyone's talking about Duffy and Wallin at the moment. But do you recall that, last election, Andrew led all reporters in exposing the nefarious dealings of a top Harper advisor named Bruce Carson? That's the already convicted fraudster Harper pulled into the PMO who's now facing criminal charges of illegal lobbying and influence peddling. Andrew wants to update the Bruce Carson file and document other unsavoury influencers Harper has relied upon well before his Senate appointments blew up.

Expect Andrew's reporting, should you make it possible, to be what it always has been: meticulously researched, fact-laden, clearly and powerfully presented.

Canada is about to have a crucial conversation leading to a decision of the highest stakes for our future. We can't afford to leave Andrew Nikiforuk's brilliant investigations and insights muzzled. Together, let's turn him loose.

Please become a Tyee Builder today.  [Tyee]

Read more: Politics, Elections

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