NP’s Andrew Coyne gets paid to trash Harper at University of Alberta


Canadian journos like the National Post’s Andrew Coyne have a dirty little secret – they make a lot of money on the speakers’ circuit especially if they have a high profile weekly gig on CBC like Coyne does.

Coyne may ‘only’ make $500(?) plus expenses appearing on The National each time but that translates into top dollar billing when he is hired to give speeches bashing PM Stephen Harper like he did yesterday at the Faculty of Law, University of Alberta.

Now keep in mind that Coyne spent the weekend whining about how the Media Party was treated at the Calgary Convention and being untruthful about access to delegates:

Indeed, most of Calgary’s BMO Centre was off limits. If you stood in the foyer, you could just catch a glimpse of delegates milling about inside, protected as by a cordon sanitaire from the filth that waited for them, pen in hand, without. That is, you could, until you were ordered out of the foyer.

It was all part of the weird, unsettling vibe that hung over the whole event. (We’ve grown used to seeing prime ministers sealed inside an impenetrable bubble, but a whole party?) That reporters were constrained from doing their jobs is perhaps a side issue. But that a democratic political party, at its national convention, would go to such lengths to hide from public view is just a bit creepy.

In the end it didn’t succeed in preventing reporters from talking to delegates (see here)

This was of course pure BS as blogger Alberta Ardvark put the lie (see here) to Coyne’s column and was actually standing beside Coyne during Harper’s speech.

ardvark coyneBut of course when I asked Mr Democracy himself if the University of Alberta was paying him for speaking to them in light of staff layoffs and program cuts to the tune of 7% as mandated this year by the Redford government, I didn’t receive a reply.

I then went to the U of A Faculty of Law and asked them this:

“could you please tell me if your faculty is paying Andrew Coyne a speaking fee and or expenses for his lecture today and if so, how much.”

Thank you

Dean Skoreyko

To which I received this:

Hi Dean,

Thank you for your enquiry.
Mr. Andrew Coyne, as with past Merv Leitch Q.C. Memorial Lecture Series speakers, has been paid to speak at the U of A Faculty of Law by the Merv Leitch Q.C. endowment fund. The endowment fund was established by friends and associates of Mr. C. Mervin Leitch Q.C, to honour the significant contributions that Merv Leitch Q.C. made whilst serving his fellow Albertans and Canadians in general. The endowment is overseen by a fundraising committee that was chaired until recently by former premier Peter Lougheed.The Faculty of Law is not at liberty to reveal confidential financial information.
Best regards,
Katherine Thompson

Communications and Events Coordinator | Faculty of Law

I took that as Coyne’s fees and expenses were paid for by private donations but to confirm, I followed up with this:

Thank you for your quick reply. I assume then that this fund has nothing to do with U of A monies and is administered outside of the university’s access to information scope?


No reply so far but will update if I receive one.

Update: The Faculty of Law wasn’t impressed as their blog points out Coyne has joined the lunatic David Suzuki in calling for politicians to be jailed for lying

But I am skeptical of Coyne’s law and order style proposals that would make it illegal for politicians to lie and for citizens not to vote. (see here)


Dear Mr. Skoreyko:

I regret that Katherine Thompson’s message to you in November 2013 that Andrew Coyne was being paid to deliver the Leitch Lecture at the University of Alberta was mistaken.

My office gave Ms. Thompson incorrect advice when she wrote to you.  We customarily offer the person who delivers the Leitch Lecture an honorarium paid for out of a fund created to establish the Lecture in Mr. Leitch’s honour.  We assumed, incorrectly, that Mr. Coyne would accept the offer of an honorarium since it is common for speakers to do so.

Mr. Coyne was dealing with our colleagues at the University of Calgary, with whom we share the Leitch Lecture, about the arrangements for the Lecture and it only became clear to us afterwards that Mr. Coyne had rejected the offer of any payment.

I apologize for any inconvenience caused to you or Mr. Coyne as a result of this mistake, the responsibility for which is mine and not Ms. Thompson’s.

Yours sincerely, Philip Bryden Dean of Law


10 Responses to “NP’s Andrew Coyne gets paid to trash Harper at University of Alberta”

  1. Jen Says:

    I do not think that Mr.Coyne has a clue what Democracy means.
    We have been asking CBC to reveal the books on expenditures.
    A very simple direct DEMOCRATIC QUESTION which so far Mr. Coyne refuses to answer

    That reporters were constrained from doing their jobs is perhaps a side issue.

    Well Mr. Coyne, let me make it so so so simple, you people have constrained tons of information of liberal scandals from the general public and when we do find out and demand answers as to WHY you refuse to answer.


    • BC Blue Says:

      You’ll never see Coyne asking Mansbridge about that $85,000 pay-off from Parks Canada for him to report on the Franklin Exhibition.

      • Jen Says:

        Mr. Coyne so call DEMOCRACY point of view have TWO standards: one for them and the other for the rest of Canada:
        So Dean, which of two Democractic views has he dictated to the U of A. LAW.

  2. Pissedoff Says:

    If people were fined for telling lies Coyne and the NP would be broke.

  3. lynn Says:

    Can citizens abstain like the Liberal Senators today? Should we throw those abstaining liberal senators in jail? Should Coyne’s leader be telling Liberal senators not to vote? If citizens don’t vote isn’t this the equivalent of abstaining? I been told today by liberal senators today that abstaining is a valid democratic choice. Should people who don’t follow politics, don’t know what’s going on vote at all? Isn’t that more criminal than abstaining. This is how empty headed dauphins are elected and ridiculous political parties come into power and wreck the economic prospects for the country. But so long as everyone can get cheap pot….. the important stuff, I get it.

  4. Jen Says:

    Coyne mentioned constrain: Now we all know, that when the media get together they either are constrain from asking the LIBERALS serious questions like: missing $40 million which the liberals REFUSE point blank to return or the ndp on their misusing the public union dues provided by the big union boss to cover Pat Martin legal fees; Judy Sgro taking money from the general public to pay for rent to live in a house which she once bought; how about the liberal mps refusal to repay their election loans.
    The list goes on and on let say, about 40 or more years of it.
    Or, are the reporters constrain as it is done at CBC, CTV from speaking out the REAL TRUTH.AGAINST THE LIBERALS.

    • BC Blue Says:

      Coyne ‘constrains’ himself from asking Peter Mansbridge about the $85,000 CBC took from Parks Canada to run stories on Franklin Exhibition.

      • Jen Says:

        Coyne has to constrain himself from asking his boss Peter Mansbridge about the $85,000, or else he is off the FREE money.
        Yet, Bev ODA who paid $16.00 for ORANGE JUICE was the worst thing than the $85,000 public money to Peter Mansbridge or the liberals refusal to return to the public the $40 million., ordered by Judge Gomery

  5. Liz J Says:

    Liberal hacks like Coyne become totally constipated when it comes asking pertinent questions of any Liberal or their Liberal loving media pals. The diarrhea flows when it comes to anything they find from their constant digging on any Conservative. No “find” is too small to make an issue of or blow up way out of proportion as to actual importance to the average taxpayer.

    The CBC and talking head Mansbridge should be filed under things we can do with less of.

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