Archive for February, 2011

Comment for today.

Monday, February 28th, 2011

We see in the paper today, an inquiry could have a say,

On PM Harper’s G-8 day, and how police had their way.

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Comment for today.

Sunday, February 27th, 2011

Stephen Harper is sitting in the cat bird seat,

With polls like his, he’ll take a budget defeat.

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Saturday, February 26th, 2011

Tories Harper an’ Hudak are in delusion,

Majorities for both them are an illusion.

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Friday, February 25th, 2011

Winter it lingers at this time of year,

It’ll never go away is what we fear.

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Writing about ethics does not make it happen.

Thursday, February 24th, 2011

One of the standard exercises for company public relations people is to write a Code of Business Conduct for the company.  This is written in high flown language and tells the world what a wonderful company your company aspires to become.  Sometimes there is a long distance to travel between the reality and the ethical aspirations.

Having written more than a few of these fairy tale documents over the years, the challenge is to be able to show that the policy is achieving reasonable objectives for the company.  The rule is that if you cannot measure it, why do it?

In public relations, this measurement is usually done each year in a communications research project.  You start with an analysis of your company’s publics.  Publics usually encompass various customer groups, employees, shareholders, competitors, suppliers, trade media, community influences, educational institutions and the list can go on.  You might not be able to do every group every year but there are obvious priorities for study.  And do not ignore an unusual group such as competitors.  If the study is done through a reputable research firm, you will be surprised what your competitors can tell you.

It is also important to recognize that communications research is also useful to other departments.  Human resources needs to know how their programs are working with both employees and local educational facilities as these groups can have a major impact on the cost of finding future employees.  Sales and services needs to know where their customers stand on the company and how they might improve.  Suppliers, as a public, can save you a great deal of money in manufacturing operations.  And the list goes on.  Knowing where you stand is a huge part of running a successful company.

That is why you sometimes want to ask the senior executives of large companies why they do not take the time to listen.  It makes no sense that a company such as Bell Canada cannot understand the antipathy towards the company in the marketplace.  This is a company that has misused its size and power for too long.  It is a company with a grandiose Code of Business Conduct that allows its divisions and their departments to do as they wish.  It is a company that writes its own conditions of doing business without advising its customers.

Some apologists try to alibi Bell because of its size.  Why the size is any kind of excuse is ridiculous.  There is a one-size-fits-all to ethics.  Is not the ethics of a company the responsibility of all employees?

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Complaints, comments, criticisms and compliments can be sent to  peter@lowry.me

Comment for today.

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

The entire Middle East is in revolt,

In Libya, it has given Gadhafi a jolt,

But the bastard’s not about to bolt.

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Comment for today.

Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011

We are having a birthday, we hear,

No surprise, it happens every year.

And we’ve a higher hurdle to clear.

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Why dis the NDP’s poor Jack Layton?

Monday, February 21st, 2011

You try to be nice to a guy and what do you get?  You get the brush-off.  That is what you get.  In writing about New Democrat Leader ‘Hapless’ Jack recently, we have tried to be polite and caring.  After all, if you invite the guy to become a member of the Liberal Party, you hardly want to disrespect him too much.

That is unless he so rudely rejects your caring blandishments.  And he is.  Not only did he say that there would be no getting in bed with the Liberal Party on his watch but he has been seen meeting with Prime Minister Harper.  They can be up to no good.

The relationship between the conservative and socialist voters has always puzzled political apparatchiks and researchers.  You have to be a liberal to understand it.  It is the hatred these hardened voters have for liberals.  We used to see it in the poorer, less educated voters in some areas of Toronto.  They would swing between the Tories and the CCF/NDP.  They never stopped at the liberal way stations.  They had grown up as confirmed liberal haters and believed firmly that the enemy of my enemy is my friend,.  It seems to matter little that the philosophical gulf between the two parties is a mile wide and a mile deep.

In British Columbia and Ontario in the coming federal election, the NDP are going to be bystanders at an all-out assault on getting Harper his majority.  Another minority will be considered a failure for Harper.  The NDP will just be road kill on the way to a majority.

It is obvious that Jack Layton has done the math.  He knows that an election in early May is not going to benefit him or the NDP.  He and his party can only lose.  If he helps the Bloc and the Liberals to savage the upcoming Harper budget, he will end up with fewer seats in the House of Commons than he started with.  That is a no-brainer.  By making what looks like some kind of deal with Harper, he kisses off the Bloc and the Liberals and keeps a happier and larger caucus on Parliament Hill.

This is also a win-win for old Harper.  Whatever Layton claims Harper has done for him, Harper still gets the credit.  The only thing Harper might do to please Layton is to raise the qualifying amount for the Guaranteed Income Supplement for seniors but that is small change compared to the corporate tax cuts that Harper intends.

What a suspended election really does for Harper is to leave Liberal Leader Ignatieff stewing and unable to get the platforms that would be his in an election campaign.  As you can imagine, this will be something for the talking heads to be blathering about for the rest of the year!

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Complaints, comments, criticisms and compliments can be sent to  peter@lowry.me

Comment for today.

Sunday, February 20th, 2011

Kate n’ Bill’s event’ll be the wedding of the year,

But, we’re not getting an invitation either I fear.

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Saturday, February 19th, 2011

Jack Layton said to PM Stephen Harper:

I don’t like that Michael Ignatieff either,

Why don’t you and I divide and conquer?

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