James Moore comes clean (for a split-second)

I was doing some late-night Canadian Heritage website surfing (I know, who doesn't?), when I came across this rambling personal message from Canadian Heritage minister James Moore. In the message he writes about the formation of the Canadian Periodical Fund and the recent flurry of discussion sparked by a National Post column on the Fund - it's pretty shocking stuff.

I had a feeling it wouldn't last long on the Canadian Heritage site (I was right, they've already pulled it down), so I copied the text and snapped some screenshots.

Click on the screenshots below to see the whole thing in its original context. I've also pasted the text below.

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Ok, fulltext:

The Honourable James Moore
Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages

Can’t you guys take a joke? I mean seriously, c’mon you guys

I know it’s late but I’ve had this bottled up inside for too long and I need to let it out.

First off, I love Canadian literary magazines. My perfect Saturday morning: green tea, Kenny G, Snuggie and the latest Malahat Review. So when Steve came to me and said "We need a new policy on magazine funding", I laughed. Then he laughed. It was fun. So I was like, "Let’s have even more fun with this" and I drafted up this crazy idea for a Canadian Periodical Fund that would give millions to Chatelaine and nothing to the Malahat or almost any of the other lit mags I love so much. I was all like "Hey big, commercial magazines that promote the mindless consumption of Ugg Boots and Spanx, here’s a bunch of money. And hey magazines that produce art and writing and stuff that we’re always really proud of once the artists get "big", here’s a swift kick in the butt on the way out the door!"

I totally thought everyone would get it, guys. To be safe, at the end where it said "you sign below to approve the creation of the Canadian Periodical Fund", I changed it to "NOT approve" with a pen – so it looked like I’d changed my mind at the last minute. I know, awesome, right? So then I faxed it over to Steve and was all like LMFAO on the cover letter. A couple weeks later, while I’m immersed in the rich meditations of A.F. Moritz in the new Fiddlehead, my secretary calls and tells me the CPF has gone through! Turns out the "NOT" was too faded on the fax, and Steve never saw it. D’OH!

So I was sort of trapped – I mean, how do you tell your boss that he missed the joke? Especially when your boss is this guy? So I kept quiet and played along. The only person I told was Bev Oda. We were sitting together in the Parliamentary cafeteria and when I told her, she shot milk out her nose. Then she ran off all excited, saying she wanted to "give it a try." Weird.

I figured that it would all work itself out – all the writers, publishers and editors in Canada would rally against the new CPF, and by the time the next election rolled around, Steve would have no choice but to back down. But then this thing came out in the National Post books section talking about how good the CPF is. And then a bunch of writers chimed in in support of killing lit mags. Maybe you all just forgot to add the "NOT", I dunno. But seriously, that’s messed up dudes.

So now what am I supposed to do? How can I in good conscience read Prairie Fire, knowing that it stands on the mutilated corpses of Grain and CV2? Man, even my metaphors are starting to go...

So here it is. The truth. It was a joke, people. A joke I played on the government. It’s not a big deal. We should all just have a good laugh and move on like nothing ever happened. No one should get mad at me or anything. Ok? So we’re good? Awesome!

See you in April (oh man... it’s 2 AM... it’s already April. Time for nappies!).




DC said...

April fools?

Rob Taylor said...

Aren't we all?

I come clean here.