The crack reporter and the mystery phone

“And yet, for all my fulminating, one fact is uncontested: I am writing about Naomi Klein. She isn’t writing about me.”

–Jonathan Kay, September 12, 2007

I have to admit I stay away from Jonathan Kay’s writing as much as I can (a stomach can only take so much, even though I’ve had two doses of Ducoral now). I can honestly say that I have never encountered a piece of writing of Kay’s that doesn’t mention Naomi. It’s vaguely creepy for me as a reader, and I can only imagine how creepy it must be for her.


“And yet, for all my fulminating, one fact is uncontested: I am writing about Naomi Klein. She isn’t writing about me.”

–Jonathan Kay, September 12, 2007

I have to admit I stay away from Jonathan Kay’s writing as much as I can (a stomach can only take so much, even though I’ve had two doses of Ducoral now). I can honestly say that I have never encountered a piece of writing of Kay’s that doesn’t mention Naomi. It’s vaguely creepy for me as a reader, and I can only imagine how creepy it must be for her.

This little piece of crack investigative reporting though, is pretty fantastic (and I mean fantasy the way Freud used it, like “paranoid fantasy”, not in the Lord-of-the-Rings sense – LOTR is on my mind because Viggo Mortensen signed the Toronto Declaration which is the subject of Kay’s piece). So, intrepid journalist Kay scours the internet and discovers on an anonymous blog (can’t make this stuff up), that the same phone used at various Palestine demos was the media phone for the Toronto Declaration. Amazing! Shocking! From this Kay with flawless logic deduces that Palestine House is behind the protest and that the Palestinian Authority is behind Palestine House! Whoa! One wonders why we stop there? Can’t we get Iran in the mix somehow? Or the Taliban? Or, hell, the Canadian and US governments that are involved in training PA forces these days, for use against the Palestinian people?

The funny thing is it proves the exact opposite of what they’re saying. The phone belongs to a young activist and all of these actions and demonstrations – celebrity signers or no – are pulled off not by well-funded organizations with ties to governments (of the sort the National Post admires and uses as sources exclusively) but by students, immigrant community organizations, and ordinary decent people with basically zero resources. That’s why they’re sharing a phone, get it?

Since Palestine House and the mystery phone’s owner have both replied to Kay’s piece of genre fiction (prompting even an “Update” in Kay’s story, which in another newspaper might have been called a correction) it is probably sapping my poor reader’s dignity to have to read any more about this. And mine to be writing about it. Since, after all, now I am writing about Jonathan Kay. And he’s not writing about me.

Justin Podur is a Toronto-based writer. Google searching will no doubt reveal all kinds of scandalous other facts about him, which can then be posted to anonymous blogs and thence to the mainstream media.

Justin Podur

Author: Justin Podur

Author of Siegebreakers. Ecology. Environmental Science. Political Science. Anti-imperialism. Political fiction. Teach at York U's FES. Author. Writer at ZNet, TeleSUR, AlterNet, Ricochet, and the Independent Media Institute.