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Dispatches cancelled; your comments Part 12

 Due to CBC budget cuts, Dispatches went off the air after the June 21/24 program. Here is another selection of your comments to us about that. (others below)  Add yours, (Dispatches@cbc.ca) and please tell us where you are writing from.


Brian Walsh of Carleton Place:

As a recently retired Canadian serviceman who enjoyed a full career while visiting many different parts of the world I thoroughly enjoy the many interesting and informative "pieces" on Dispatches.

Some time ago I heard that Dispatches was to be cancelled as part of the economies necessitated by CBC budget shortfalls. I just want to verify this rumor and, if it is true, voice my sincere disappointment at this decision.

In my humble opinion "Dispatches" is one of the best CBC segments that enables Canadians throughout our vast land to appreciate the many blessings we enjoy as Canadians by transporting us to many distant parts of the world and introducing their cultures, customs and daily challenges.  I hope I have been misinformed and will be able to continue enjoying Rick MacInnis-Rae and Dispatches for many more years to come.


Celia Rabinovitch, Winnipeg & San Francisco:

Dear Rick and the Dispatches Team,
You have the most hip, interesting, intellectually stimulating and entertaining program on the CBC. Your anthropological perspective is essential in the world of journalism and education.

As a university professor, I looked forward to hearing the vibrant energy and humanism conveyed by your program and always feel informed by it. I hope that the huge outpouring of comments might cause the Government and the CBC to reconsider the cuts to unique, creative, and accessible programs such as Dispatches. Thank you for providing us with great radio, ideas, and facts in a forum that is accessible and important. Your listeners will want to hear from you.


Evelyn von Almassy, President, Haida Gwaii Teachers' Association:

Hi There,

I can't tell you what my most favourite "Dispatches" story was, as there were so many.  I have always been impressed with all the information that Rick MacInnes-Rae brought to me on Sunday evenings here on Haida Gwaii, on the Pacific Northwest Coast of BC in Canada.

These stories were never reported upon by other media, and I have learned so much about the rest of the world by these stories.  I have traveled a little on this little globe, but the analysis, data and seriousness of the stories have taught me much, even about the places that I have visited.

Sometimes I took these stories into my classrooms, and they supplemented my lessons with information from other countries and perspectives.

I am very disappointed that CBC is ending "Dispatches" on CBC.  It is one of the best shows on the radio; why this show is being cancelled when there are quite a few others of lesser quality makes little sense.

Thank goodness there are pod casts on-line which will have past recordings of "Dispatches". I would like to thank Rick Mac Innes-Rae for his integrity and energy these past years. Good luck and good night!

Anne Burnell, Quebec, PQ:

PBS? Someone out there is going to appreciate your show as much as a lot of us do. You fought for a lot of great ideals - now you have to fight for you. Good luck and thank you.


Wm Hotson  St. Marys On:  

Hello Rick
Just like the cbc to shoot themselves in the foot by canceling the best program on their schedule. The show was a delight to listen every week with enlightening and so entertaining stories. I'll miss the esoteric stories the most, always an ear opening hour. As been said by others, I hope the show will continue on in some form or more. Good luck, and as a listener I will miss your voice every Thursday


Larry Turner, Calgary, AB:

Thank you Rick and the entire Dispatches team for always putting out an outstanding and informative radio program. My wife and I are faithful listeners to Dispatches through your weekly podcasts. The quality of your reporting, the interesting stories you bring to us, and your teams' efforts and abilities to provide us with an open window to events and local perspectives outside of our own community is enriching and important. I have no doubt your program has stimulated action and reaction to stories that celebrate achievement or confront injustices ... and help make us better informed Canadians and better global citizens.

I can not believe, despite CBC funding cutbacks, the CBC executive can not find a way to 'save' this important program from being cancelled. What are they thinking? There has GOT to be a way to keep this program alive. What can I do? Please let me know.


Barbara Heywood-Jones:

I am so sorry to hear that Dispatches has been cut! It has become my favorite CBC program. Dispatches informs in a way that touches our hearts and our minds.

This is one of the programs that spans the generations as it is also the favorite of my daughter who is 36 years my junior. My mother also loved the CBC which connects not only our great country but also generations of Canadians.

Thank you for the 12 years of great programing. 

With appreciation and sadness,

 Linda Carlson in Victoria BC:

I am so very disheartened about the decision to discontinue Dispatches.  As the only remaining radio broadcast that connects me to the greater world, I lament the loss...  The CBC that fuels me is certainly changing but changing such that I spend as much time listening to other stations as I do with CBC, my longstanding companion.  And given the very strange time in which we live, when our Prime Minister snubs his nose at democratic process and the world seems so topsy turvey ... well what better opportunity for Dispatches to shine the light.  So, with considerable appreciation to you Rick McInnes-Rae and all those who contributed, I just had to send a note to say how much you will be missed.  Thank you for providing one of CBC Radio's finest programs.

Onni Milne, Vancouver:

Hello. I regret the message I send now. I regret that Dispatches will end  this week. Your program offers news of what is happening around the world. We are not an island and need to be aware of what is taking place in the rest of the world.... Thank you for the entertaining, inspiring and informative programs over the past 12 years. May you and all the staff involved go on to bigger and better things. I consider this a dark day for CBC and for Canada.

 Bradley Arlt in Argentina:

I have been listening to the Dispatches for the last year after I discovered this wonderful program on podcast. I have lived in Argentina for the last 7 years, and have listened to many international news programs over the years. Dispatches is by fair the most expansive, and the most cutting edge. A true window into the world.

Frequently now I hear about the latest news item on The Current or PRI (public radio international) and think "Didn't Dispatches cover that story a few months ago?"

You have done a super awesome job with Dispatches Rick MacInnes-Rae, and I can't wait to hear your new work.

Sharon Lawrence, Vernon, B.C:

I love this program!! What can we do to keep it on the air?

Joe Green, Edmonton:

I strongly disagree with cancelling these kinds of CBC programs that have been very helpful in showing Canadians the background and details of events around the world. In depth interviews help us form solid opinions, rather than being held hostage ot "sound bytes". 

What a huge disappointment to learn that Dispatches is falling under the Stephen Harper axe. I've been a regular listener for years. I have learned many interesting things about our world.I have never run into any other venue that does anything similar to this. This is a big loss for everyone who is interested in the world beyond our door.


C. Foley:

I very much regret that Dispatches will cease broadcasting this week. An informative, enlightening programme of integrity is always appreciated and needed.

Mike Landry the conflicted humanitarian, certainly struck a chord with me as I have been having an internal dialogue on this same moral dilemna - we do have a moral responsibility for those we "save' thereby condemning them to a life of suffering, pain and fear as we walk away to return to our comfortable lives. No individual has the right to decide for another what hardship they must endure. It is worthy of an intelligent civil discussion.
Thank you, Rick.


Paul Therrien of Halifax:

Rick et al,

I regret that your last show is imminent.  I have enjoyed dispatches, listening mostly at work, or on the road for too many years to count.

The show has brought the world and it's stories - most of which would not be heard - to me, and countless others.

Fair winds and following seas, all the best, the show will be missed.

Maharukh Kootar:

Hello Mr. MacInnes-Rae,

I would like to thank you for your brilliant and inspiring programming; it's been a pleasure listening to you! As an educator, I often take your stories to the classroom. Your show was insightful and intuitive yet you remained humble and let the stories shine. I will so miss your voice, will you be doing any podcasts? Thank you again.

Laura Steiman Shofley, Chilliwack:

This has always been one of my very favorite shows. So sad the budget cuts of the Harper Conservatives have taken your gifts of education and enlightenment away from the Canadian public. Thanks so much Rick for wonderful, compassionate and insightful journalism. Bless you always..and KEEP GOING..there is a place for your kind of gifts in a more enlightened future for our country.

Marlene Henley, Woodstock, NB:

I can't believe Dispatches, one of the most interesting, objective, informative programs is being discontinued. I suffer through some of the new programming that has started during the past few years, many programs are unfortunately part of the dumbing-down of our society. No other program covers the world stories and events as does Rick McInnes Ray. His English grammar is impeccable, he is one of very few journalists on the CBC who knows the difference between speaking-with and talking-with people he interviews. I hope enough listeners will contact you to reinstate this intelligent program. 


Michel Mondou Plessisville, Québec:

Hi! I am a French Canadian from Quebec and I am extremely disappointed from the decision to cancel Dispatches. Personnally, It is the best radio program if you are not driven by ideological conservative thoughts like our dictatorial federal government. Dispatches was our open window to the world, especially for us living in rural areas. It is a shame that we cancel Dispatches and we offer hundreds of thousands of dollars to Don Cherry and company. CBC that I listen every day shouldn't deserve to be listened anymore if quality is sacrificed for ratings. I hope that our host has other plans because he is a hell of a good journalist. I will miss the show a lot and I will miss radio quality even more.


Suzanne Smith of Fonthill, Ontario:

 I was disappointed to hear about the cancellation of Dispatches.  Seems I've been listening for years now to Mr. MacInnes Rae's deep voice while making Sunday dinner.  I think that informative and provocative voice has added qualities that help me make better dinners! 

Truly, this show has taken me into subjects and areas of interest and concern that I would NEVER have discovered on my own.  The voices of people and their stories from around the world was always interesting and I am sad to see this show go.  T

hat being said, I just couldn't let the show go without saying thank you to Rick and the entire staff that put this wonderful program together.  So...thanks...we'll miss you.  And my husband will miss you too because my Sunday dinners just won't be as good.


Sue Clinton, Sydenham:

As I listened to the second last program I wondered to myself, why is this the program being cut due to budget cutbacks?  Personally, it has always been my favourite program on the CBC and I have looked forward to it for many years.  Nothing against "Q", however, it seems I could listened to it nearly every day, whether I want to or not.  Please consider, if it is still at all possible to influence the powers that be, keeping Dispatches for those of us who have learned from it, enjoyed and look forward to it, each and every week.  If my pleas go unanswered, then I bid a sad farewell to those who have worked hard over the years to provide this excellent program.  Thank you.  


Tony Allen, Saskatoon:


I discovered Dispatches only a month ago, and find it most interesting!  I am distressed to learn that the show has been cancelled.  I will be mining your archives for months to come, I hope ALL shows will be available on the website for a long time.


Christine Kraayvanger, Quesnel, B.C.

Hello Rick & all Dispatches staff:

My thanks for all the excellent radio programs over the last number of years  I have thoroughly enjoyed listening to dispatches from around the world bringing stories that informed me and created a global context not found in regular news or current affairs programming.  I feel your program was one of the best CBC Radio had to offer, and will miss it.


Paula Armstrong, Ladysmith, Québec:

Dear Crew at CBC Dispatches,

I'm so disheartened, along with many other CBC listeners, that Dispatches is to be taken off the air. I and my friends have listened tp CBC Radio for decades now--it has been our touchstone--and Dispatches is one of the most important programs of all this time.


Julie Gourley, Ottawa - Kanata:

 Dear Dispatches,

Thank you for the radio show. I have learned so much from your show. I love to travel in my armchair by reading about the everyday lives of people far away. Your radio show is an extension of this armchair hobby and has stoked my curiosity about the world. The stories you have carried are an ever-changing  mixture of inspiration, wonder, heartbreak, compassion, and fun.


Maria Nicholson, Revelstoke. British Columbia:

Dear Dispatches and CBC,

I am appalled to hear that Dispatches is slated for the chopping block...
Dispatches is intelligent and timely in our global village. What's more, it is real. Please, I urge CBC to retain Dispatches...  an investment that helps us to become better international citizens by being enlightened on many international issues that often will affect us sooner or later and may prove vital to us. In the scheme of things, it appears to me that the budget is well used for this program.
I hope that CBC decision makers will change their minds and retain Rick McInnes Rae's outstanding program: Dispatches. I don't want the CBC 'dumbed down' any further.


Bob Needham, Kamloops British Columbia:

I am disappointed by the attempts to dumb down Canadian society to fit the aims of a conservative "agenda" by undermining our ability to find out what is really happening around the world (Canada too).  It is difficult to be properly informed in our busy lives. 

Dispatches fills a need that is easy to access and informs us just by listening.  The less we know about what needs to be corrected abroad, all of which has some long term effect on Canada, the easier we are led down a path of ignorance by careless non-democratic leaders into similar circumstances here at home.  Thanks Rick, I hope as others do that you may be able to ressurect this broadcast in some form for Canada and the rest of the listening world.


Nancy Reid, Ottawa:

 I regret the CBC's termination of this program. For more than a decade I have listened and learned through the voices of journalists. How few programs enrich our understanding of each other and exercise moderation and analysis as Dispatches does. No hysteria, popularity contests or hot topics only but a wealth of thoughtful concern and comprehensive depth.  I have listened to CBC radio for 50 years and fear that shallow and short coverage is seen as the future goal.  I wince.

Mary Ritza, Sault Ste. Marie:

 I am really going to miss your show. Listening to your show connected me to the larger world that I could only imagine. Thank you for making this world real.


Steve Weller, Vancouver:

Dear Rick,

I am so sorry to hear that Dispatches has been cancelled. Your show has brought me a lot of education and a lot of enjoyment. It will be missed. I am very angry that CBC continues to suffer this death of a thousand cuts, for what are obviously ideological reasons.

How did Canada become a country where there is not enough money for our national broadcaster, for veterans, for the unemployed, but there are billions in tax breaks for corporations and billions more for warplanes that aren't even suited to our need? I don't know, but I want that other Canada, the one where we were governed and not ruled, back.


Jennifer Fletcher,: Hornby Island, BC:

Dear Dispatches,  I am so sad your show is being cancelled.  What a poor decision that is.  I am greatly disappointed in "the powers that be"

My nephew who has grown up in Paris, lived in Cambridge and travelled in Rwanda (working on a documentary film) Has been living with us (in British Columbia) for a couple of months and attending high school here.  He is shocked how little his Canadian peers know about the rest of the world, how ignorant they are of the atrocities which are taking place in Syria and else where.  He was actually discouraged by his Social Studies teacher from doing his "current event" on Syria!?  He was told his fellow students would be bored and not interested.  We encouraged him to proceed with it and he did, and managed to "bring the world" to those kids. 
He wants to be a war correspondent, a photographer, a documentary film maker  He is inspired!  He is 16.  He would have been a fabulous contributor to Dispatches in the future.

It is so important for us to hear these stories from around the world.  I hope you can find another way to bring them to the Canadian people.  Shame on you CBC.  I would choose Dispatches over any other national show on the radio.  Thank you for opening up the world to me.

Kari Medig, Nelson:

 Dear Rick and producers @ Dispatches,

Congrats on producing such a great show over the last 11 years.  It's one of my favourite shows on the CBC.  As an avid traveller, your program is the next best thing to getting on a plane and heading out on an adventure.

Barbara Bambiger, Victoria:

 I am both sad & furious to hear that Dispatches is being  "discontinued" for lack of funds.  A national disgrace!  God forbid that any of our tax money should go to  programmes that inform, educate, & stimulate us!  It does seem that  there is a strong move to keep the Canadian public passive & non-informed or ill-informed.  And this is not just the current government; I remember vividly the hostility aimed at the CBC from the Liberals too. 

To everyone involved in producing Dispatches, I wish to extend hearty appreciation.  Dispatches has informed & entertained so well, giving us a broad range of information & letting us draw our own conclusions.  Rick MacInnes-Rae is absolutely tops, & it is clear that he has had  an excellent team working with him.  Many thanks & best wishes to all of you!  I am so sorry that  more of us haven't  spoken out far more strongly to prevent these drastic cuts to CBC Radio.  Our finest national institute being flushed .... it really is a disgrace!

Lou Anne Meloche, Toronto:


Just listened to the second to last show.  I want you to know how much I've enjoyed (though sometimes 'enjoyed' is certainly not the right word) Dispatches over the years.  It has been interesting, funny, thought-provoking, sad, curious -- but most often inspiring.  You've done an amazing job and I'll miss this show.

I wish you all the best and hope to hear your voice on another equally interesting program sometime soon.Best of luck always.


Catherine Newham, Lyon, France:

Here I am listening to the second last episode of your eye-opening show via the Internet while living in France.  In fact, I first heard your broadcast online when I lived in New York, and I have continued to follow it as I moved back to and across Canada, to the US, and to Europe.

It has educated me in many important areas-- employment, dignity, human rights, education -- that can affect people in different ways depending on where they live and their background.  Some stories have been heartbreaking; some have given me hope and motivation to fight for what I feel is important.

The end of your program feels almost like the end of an era; I wish I could keep hearing these real stories, the in-depth news and documentaries, as I keep moving around.  Although CBC does have other valuable shows, I wish one of the less valuable and/or too-long lived programs were cut, and not yours.

Please keep the past episodes on your webpage so I can continue to educate myself!  And I hope to hear more of your stories somehow -- it is always a job well done.

Linda Intaschi Toronto:

Another reason to be distressed by the deterioration of the CBC -
the cancellation of Dispatches.  You are losing some of your most loyal
supporters with actions like this.  A real shame.

Cynthia Spraggs, Chester, Nova Scotia:

Of all the asinine, stupid and misguided decisions I've seen regarding the CBC, cancelling Dispatches is right up there. Did anyone ask the listeners? Did anyone really do more than one minute of thinking about this? Dispatches has insight into international affairs in a sea of mediocre and controlled programming that is second to none. Why anyone would touch one minute of it is completely beyond me.

CBC Radio is a national treasure and differentiates what it means to be Canadian! Dispatches is one of its shining stars. Leave it alone.

Rachel Charles, Burlington, ON:

I'm so disappointed that Dispatches has been cancelled. I saw a TV commercial for CBC News and thought that someone missed the point somewhere in assuming that TV news is all that matters (especially when I saw one of my favourite Dispatches contributors, Margaret Evans!). For years, Dispatches has been offering listeners relevant and interesting looks at the world outside our borders. This was what first drew me to the show: I hadn't heard or seen any other news show that consistently brought me out of what I could see with my own eyes.

I will really miss Rick and the stories he brought to the airwaves. Well done, Dispatches team. You have consistently delivered a very high quality program that engages listeners both in the news and in the process of reporting it.

All the best...I hope to hear you again on my radio. 

Carl Duivenvoorden:

Hi Rick and team.
Just wanted to send a quick note to thank you for an excellent program over the years.  I did a bit of international work early in my career, and it gave me an enduring interest in what's happening outside of this especially lucky part of the world we call Canada.  Dispatches has always offered a wonderful assortment of stories and perspectives from around the globe, and I have enjoyed listening each time I have been able to catch the show.  Thank you again for all your great efforts; I will miss Dispatches, and I lament its loss.  (I recognize that sometimes hard choices are needed, but Dispatches would have been one of the last programs I'd have chosen to drop.) 

Peter Wing, Vancouver:

We have travelled extensively both for work and recreation, and just returned from a trip to Nepal and India, educating in the field of spinal cord injury. A major link with home has been CBC podcasts; a major window on the world has been Dispatches. We were already planning to contribute so were especially devastated to hear of its termination while we were still travelling. Please reconsider this closure!


Aaron Bellamy, Cambridge Bay, Nunavut:

Hi Rick,

I was very disappointed to hear about the cancellation of Dispatches. It has been my favourite show for the past few years by providing a window into international stories, people and events. Particularly during the past two years when I have been teaching in Nunavut and sometimes feeling a little isolated from the rest of the world. Your show has been a powerful reminder that there are important stories happening beyond our borders that are worth paying attention to. In short, there is more to life than beer and hockey. I sincerely hope that this is not the end of Dispatches and that we will hear your voice again.



Darlene Sands of Oshawa, ON:

I was so saddened to find out that your program has been scheduled for cancellation in June! Is there any way to prod cbc into changing their minds? I so enjoyed the dispatch from Lori C. on the Bomberito's of Peru's Andes Mountains. I admire Quincy Perkins attempts to find them and document their stories. Lori's account was sad, thrilling, haunting and uplifting.
I also want to know how the story of the authentic bomberitos they met continued. It must have been quite sad to be prevented from saying goodbye to them by landslides but you know that they were there at the other side doing their jobs helping stranded motorists as best they could. God Bless the "little firemen"!

John Kozub, Zurich, Switzerland:

 I am very disappointed to hear that Dispatches will be cancelled.


Jeff Campbell, Kingston, Ontario:

I find I am at a loss. I don't think I have heard any other radio program that I have enjoyed as much as Dispatches. Every segment of every program is a delight and I find myself in despair that your have been canceled. Seldom has such an injustice been perpetrated on fans of a radio program I continue with the hope that something will change the mind of the powers that have made this decision. If it doesn't, I wish all the staff of Dispatches a big thanks and hope for the best for you all in the future. Take care


Diana Sharpe, Panama City, Panama:

I'm a long-time listener and fan of Dispatches, and was shocked and saddened to hear of the show's cancellation due to the recent budget cut-backs.  I think this is one of the most thoughtful, well-researched and interesting programs on CBC radio, and your podcasts have kept me entertained, inspired and informed both at home (Toronto, Montreal) and abroad (Uganda, Panama) over the years.  This will be a real loss to CBC, and to Canadians.

I have been out of the country and just learned the bad news this morning.  My feelings are similar to those well-expressed on the web site.

Jim Bodie, Sherwood Park, AB:

Has anyone considered resurrecting Dispatches as a paid subscription service - so much an episode, all episodes for so much?  Maybe there are several different scenarios that could be considered.  The prospect of my having my window on the world closed for financial reasons makes me nervous, not knowing what might be going on elsewhere and how it might affect me in the future.  Mark me down as one who would pay for the service, depending on price of course (I'm not a rich man).  How many people would be needed, at, say 99 cents per episode, to make Dispatches viable as a not-for-profit enterprise?

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