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In the News: From Rapporteurs to Racoon Dogs

March 18th, 2023 by Michael Dyet

Hmmm, why do news headlines bring out the worst in me?

I gave up reading newspapers many years ago. I get my news fix in bytes off the radio and the first 15 minutes of the evening TV news. A quarter hour of news stories telling my why I should not stop out the front door is more than enough.

But occasionally I scan the news headlines online for a quick look at what is going on in the world. Yesterday these are the headlines I found and the response they provoked in me.

Who is David Johnston, the new special rapporteur on alleged Chinese Interference in Canadian Elections?

What the hell is a rapporteur? Most likely political double-speak for a patronage appointment with a ridiculous remuneration package to ensure the report exonerates the government.

The ROM Collected Millions in Wage Subsidies during COVID-19 closures. Now the Canadian Government Wants the Money Back

Good luck with that. Who approved the ROM for the wage subsidy in the first place? Probably a bureaucrat who took early retirement and moved to Bora Bora to escape their mistakes.

Justin Trudeau Blasts Pierre Poilievre Over Election Media Response, Says He Should Know Better

Oh, great. More political backstabbing, grandstanding and mudslinging. Since when did knowing better ever stop a politician from taking a shot at his rival?

It Wasn’t Your Imagination: Ontario Experienced Its Darkest Winter in More Than 80 Years

Tell me something I do not know. There are half a dozen ways I could interpret this statement and none of them have anything to do with sunlight.

Luke Schenn’s Homecoming ‘A Dream Come True’ for Maple Leafs Defenceman

The dream come true is getting paid several million dollars a year to work 60 minutes three times a week with the summer off. Talk to me when the Leafs finally bring home the Stanley Cup again.

Richard Branson’s Virgin Orbit Pauses All Work, Reportedly Furloughs Staff

Branson is filthy rich. He could carry the Virgin Orbit staff for a year on the interest alone on his fortune. Instead, he locks the door and looks for a financial bailout.

Racoon Dogs Emerge as Possible COVID-19 Source in New Analysis

Racoon dogs? Margaret Atwood called. She is demanding royalties. COVID-19 is yesterday’s news. There must be more productive ways for these scientists to use their time.

Now you know what I seldom read the newspaper. It brings out the cynical and sarcastic side of me. It is better to ignore the headlines, do my own thing and spin metaphors for my next novel which most definitely will not include rapporteurs or racoon dogs.

~ Now Available Online from Amazon, Chapters Indigo or Barnes & Noble: Hunting Muskie, Rites of Passage – Stories by Michael Robert Dyet

~ Michael Robert Dyet is also the author of Until the Deep Water Stills – An Internet-enhanced Novel which was a double winner in the Reader Views Literary Awards 2009. Visit Michael’s website at or the novel online companion at

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