Senator Mike Duffy has attacked the University of King’s College and other Canadian journalism schools for exposing students to Noam Chomsky and critical thinking.

In a speech Saturday to Conservative party members in Amherst, Duffy reportedly slammed journalism programs for churning out leftist graduates.

“When I went to the school of hard knocks, we were told to be fair and balanced,” Duffy was quoted from his speech in yesterday’s issue of the Amherst Daily News. “That school doesn’t exist any more. Kids who go to King’s, or the other schools across the country, are taught from two main texts.”

According to Duffy — a former CTV News journalist appointed to the Senate last year by Prime Minister Stephen Harper — those two texts are Manufacturing Consent, Chomsky’s book on mainstream media, and books about the theory of critical thinking.

“When you put critical thinking together with Noam Chomsky, what you’ve got is a group of people who are taught from the ages of 18, 19 and 20 that what we stand for, private enterprise, a system that has generated more wealth for more people because people take risks and build businesses, is bad,” Duffy is quoted as saying.

Duffy then told Conservatives they have nothing to apologize for because most Canadians are not “on the fringe where these other people are.”

Kim Kierans, head of the King’s School of Journalism, was surprised to hear Duffy’s comments.

She said Manufacturing Consent isn’t part of the curriculum, though students do read some Chomsky.

She made no apologies for teaching critical thinking.

“We’re trying to teach people to have critical thinking skills, to hold accountable anyone who is in any way in authority,” she said. “It doesn’t matter if it’s the Conservatives, the NDP, the Green party, they’re all fair game in the sense that they have to be able to be transparent.”

Throwing stones

Kim Kierans, head of the King’s School of Journalism, said she can’t remember Mike Duffy making a visit to the school since she started there in 1997.

“I think you need to come and see what people are doing before you throw stones,” she said.

Latest From ...