Secret Office Memos: Rats on the rope at the National Post

In which National Post columnist Terry “Corky” Corcoran rips new ones for two longtime colleagues. Peter Kuitenbrouwer and Drew Hasselback are the prime suspects.

“What a shock and disappointment. Two writers who I understand were key organizers of the union move take buyouts and walk out of the newsroom leaving a mess behind. I’m All Right Jack. I thought I knew them. I certainly respected them as individuals and for their work. But their moves have been baffling.

They spent 20 or more years at the paper, earning what I assume was good money with benefits, raising kids and buying houses. Then the newspaper industry crashes so they decide they can’t take cuts or freezes anymore and organize a union drive—as if the union can turn around industry-wide declining revenue. But it looks like they had no real intention of following through beyond getting their buyouts. Leave that to the younger writers and editors who have no seniority or built-up reserves.

I find this unconscionable.

This is really none of my business.

Whether the union is approved or not makes no difference to me. But the more I thought about their buy out escapes, the sadder I became.

Newspapers are losing revenues and no union can stop the declines and the need to make adjustments in the new business environment.

The National Post needs people who are working to overcome the challenges facing the business, which from my experience is what all of the people in the newsroom are constantly trying to do.

Note: No managers have seen or approved this message.

–(Sept. 19, 2017, 2:41pm)


  1. The biggest challenge facing the dead-tree press is the dinsoaurs that waffle on about issues that the digitoids don’t even know about, and if they did, would wonder why they should care.

  2. Terence Corcoran is upset because a couple colleagues chose to do right for themselves rather than the collective. Our Corky, Gordon Gekko’s favourite Canadian bloviator? You’re shitting me, right?

    • We can assume that this was an inter-office email from der Corcoran, [ Terence Dollard Corcoran, 74, clinging to jobs at Toronto Star (1969), Ottawa Journal (1969-1971), Canadian Press (1972-1974), Montreal Gazette (1974-1978), Financial Times of Canada (1978-1987), merged with the Financial Post (1987-1989), Globe and Mail 1989-1998), Financial Post (1998-2000), merged with National Post (2000-2017)].
      And the man complains about wanting union protection and benefits. Oy!

  3. It is ironic that a free press requires free people to pay for it, either through subscriptions or advertising. It has reached a point where it is cheaper to buy a share of Toronto Star stock than today’s edition.
    Here’s a thought….. Why not make magazine and newspaper subscriptions tax deductible rather than give government handouts to the publishing industry. The CBC is more than enough taxpayer funded government propaganda, don’t you think?

    • Won’t the garbage collectors complain about the excess newsprint and coated-paper stock from these newly tax-deductible subscriptions cause in their daily or weekly pickups that there is no resale market for?
      Even now a walk through the lanes and streets on “Garbage Day” shows that the free weeklies and ‘shoppers’ are tossed, bound-up and unread, straight to the can on the same day they reach the front porch.

  4. It is a sad but true fact that even free newspapers go unread. Most people would rather be uninformed than misinformed. How then will the public learn of the great news when, once dead tree publishing dies off, all those spared trees absorbed the planet killing carbon dioxide those old publications warned us about. Hey… Maybe there should a carbon tax credit for not reading newspapers or magazines.

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