Rumor Mongering in Cornwall Ontario – Claude McIntosh, Chris Savard, and Million Dollar Man CAO Paul Fitzpatrick – March 17, 2012

CFN –  It’s a foggy morning here in Cornwall Ontario as I write this.   Just getting my morning pot of Green tea going and having a bit of toast as I wait for my old dog to wake up.  She sleeps in later and later.    She’s 11.   She’s had a wonderful life and hopefully it can continue for a long time.   She’s not as busy as she was when she was a pup, but she still has her moments.

So to does Claude McIntosh.   Sadly big corporate media has diminished his role with the Standard Free Holder.    Part of me is sad and part of me is glad as he’s the only other columnist in our fair city.   We rarely are of the same position on a given point; especially when it comes to city hall where his long time relationships I think can sometimes colour or tinge the tones his keyboard sprays into the universe.   But I’ve learned quite a bit from him and he’s a very generous scribbler to we younguns in the biz.


Did you read what Mac wrote last night?


Yeah – I thought it’d be much more stronger in tone


What a load of shite.    Rumor mongering (expletive deletive)

Media is changing and it’s funny to see how different it can be.    I personally think that we media have a certain obligation to the public especially when it comes to local politics.    To omit the truth many times is as bad as fabricating it.

I can’t speak for other media but when I get reports or calls I have to verify them.   An example being this weeks story about the CAO of Cornwall, Paul Fitzpatrick having his arse towed out of the Soccer fields for bewildering reasons that really don’t dance with a city vehicle instead of a tow truck.

I had the same calls come in with the same claims.   What I did was verify things; in this case from Fitzy himself and then did an accurate report.    Is that rumor mongering Claude?  Why didn’t the Free Holder report on this in a timely fashion?   Does the public not have a right to know how their tax dollars are being spent; especially as it looks like we’re going to get a 2% tax raise for antics like this and the city spending more having a large law firm monitor at least CFN if not other media than was spent advertising and marketing with us last year?

Is this rumor mongering?


Or Erica Stacey’s story?


Isn’t also the job of media outlets to “break” the news first, and not sit back and wait until it’s safe or to sugar coat it.  Is it all about who gets the most money from City Hall to not earnestly report on City Hall in truthful terms?

It was funny that last Saturday we covered the attempted child abduction in Ingleside.   I only released that info after getting a release from the OPP.   Someone actually accused CFN of making it up because the Free Holder hadn’t reported that.   The Free Holder did; two days later.   The same on Chris Savard leaving town which we reported weeks ago and Claude mentioned today.

Rumor mongering is something that happens when the truth isn’t known.   “X” looks ill. They don’t say anything; people speculate what’s wrong with “X”.

Good management always gets ahead of an issue or story because if you don’t it gets bigger.  You can’t just stick your head in the sand and hope things go away.   That again isn’t good management.

Is that how to attract people and business to our community?

Methinks not.

And that ladies and gentleman at the end of the day is what all this is about here in Cornwall Ontario.     Poor management from the top down that divides a community and causes already incredibly high taxes to go higher.   That won’t change until Mr. Fitzpatrick loses his job and those responsible for protecting his many messes follow.    As I told Councilor Murphy this week when he asked if I thought he should resign;  “Anyone that supports the way Councilor Rivette was treated; the way CFN is being treated, and other shenanigans should definitely resign.”

We elect councilors to represent what’s best for the city of Cornwall.  Not themselves, not the CAO, not their mistresses or moms.  It’s really simple.   The good news is that support at council seems to have shifted from 9-2 protecting our CAO to 7-4.    When it gets to 5-6 maybe, just maybe our city can progress; some apologies be made, and a cycle broken so that we can heal and grow.

Jamie Gilcig – Editor – The Cornwall Free News

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  1. I believe his tone was soft because he knows the truth but also knows the culprits. Go Go CAO! Out the door quickly.

  2. It’s sad to see Claude fade away into a sea of mediocrity and compromise.

  3. “What I did was verify things; in this case from Fitzy himself and then did an accurate report. Is that rumor mongering Claude?”

    – No, but maybe checking the facts on other aspects of your story such as…

    “In multiple legal documents it was alleged that Mr. Fitzpatrick and Ms Derouchie had a “relationship”.”

    -Are these legal documents public? If so could you have provided the exact quote where it states that Paul and Donna had a “relationship”?

    “The interesting spin to this is who lives right across the street from where Mr. Fitzpatrick’s car was stuck.”

    You are assuming and insinuating that he was visiting Donna, this is definitively spin… and should have been verified… did you ask Paul directly? Did you ask Donna? Have you interviewed those who may have been involved in this situation ( re: the city worker who helped him out)…

    “And who negotiated that settlement? Was it departed HR manager Robert Menagh or Mr. Fitzpatrick himself?”

    These are leading questions and should be verified… perhaps you should have asked both parties or at least given them chance to respond.

    This is far from accurate reporting Jamie.

  4. Jamie I have always found your articles fair and balanced, and it’s about time somebody has put a spotlight on city hall and public works. But come on you know that other reporters need to bend to the will of the almighty dollar. I’m not sure what integrity goes for nowadays, but lets face it some people will pay to be part of the good old boys network. And that payment comes in the way of articles that protect them. Don’t expect others to have the same level of integrity as yourself try to ignore them they are truly children of a lesser God. You know the responsibility of reporting, it’s not to protect peoples reputations it’s to protect the truth. Keep up the good work and try to ignore those that have long given up your standards. Try to have a great day.

  5. At one time the Standard-Freeholder used to report on the shenanigans going on at City Hall. Today the S-F is in City Hall’s pocket and do not seem to report anything untoward about the Council. The S-F could have taken a page out of your book Jamie and reported the TRUTH but it seems they decided to join the ranks of the sleaze and cover up whats going on! Keep up the real reporting Jamie, you are No.1 in Cornwall.

  6. Right on Jamie.The freeholder and its muzzled writers have been sugar coating officials in this city for over 30 years.Could you imagine if our local paper would of properly covered everything that went on in our city years ago.This would be a great city and all officials wouldn,t dare try and pull of the things they have been doing.thankyou for shining some light in what was a very dark tunnel.

  7. If this story is true….Who would be on Top????
    Get your mind out of the gutter…I mean would a CEO be abusing his office
    by starting such a relationship….isn’t that sexual harasement???

  8. While not supporting any side..thank the heavens…Cornwall is a distant memory BUT…if any progress is to be made…some proper journalism needs to happen…

    Left this town 30 yrs ago..but nothing has changed….here is the legacy left behind by reporters afraid to tackle tough issues!!!(Cornwall Inquiry)
    Brave Journalists like Marie Colvin have died in Syria to bring the truth to the World. AsCNN reported in 72 Hours under Fire..Marie was out of that hell hole…but went back in…to tell the truth and paid with her life..
    Cornwall reporters never left the office…it would seem…at least on this story..that turned into a National story…dj

    Cornwall Inquiry document

    Dr.Young concluded her report with the following statement “In Cornwall journalist barely scatched the surface and let of the largest stories in the community remain clouded in rumours and allegations for more than two decades. It shows that best practices journalism matters for accountability and the ability of citizens to make sense of important issues in their community” Media coverage of the Cornwall issue on the whole “lacked in-depth analysis” and “verification and systematic sourcing.” In Dr Young’s opinion The citizens of Cornwall could have been better served” had the media quality been better.

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