Reporters in budget lockup diagnosed with Stockholm syndrome

Reporters in budget lockup diagnosed with Stockholm syndrome

Fredericton — Since the release of the Gallant government’s latest budget, some New Brunswick journalists have been praising it in an uncharacteristically biased fashion. After leaving yesterday’s budget lockup briefing, the reporters have been vocally supporting the controversial plan that outlines over $589 million in government cutbacks and tax hikes.

“You have to hand it to the government,” said journalist Jan McPorter. “If I had one criticism, it would be that the budget is a little too perfect. I mean, did they bring in some Nobel laureates to advise them on this or what? There’s just a little too much genius here, if you catch my drift.”

“Man, that Roger Melanson could sell ice in the Arctic,” gushed reporter Julio Inglewood. “What a handsome guy… and so intelligent! I’ve got a bit of a man-crush on him, I admit. Lock me up with that hunky finance minister any time!”

Stockholm syndrome is a psychological phenomenon in which captives express empathy and positive feelings toward their jailers. Syndrome sufferers often mistake a lack of exploitation for an act of kindness. The diagnosis is mostly famously associated with the 1991 animated Disney film Beauty and the Beast.

It is suspected that the journalists fell victim to the mental illness while imprisoned in the budget lockup. The budget lockup is a special press briefing where reporters are locked away for the day without outside communication as they are briefed in advance on the details of the provincial budget.

“For a moment, I sort of lost my sight when they unveiled the budget,” said investigative reporter Rob Scones. “It was what they refer to as ‘hysterical blindness’ brought on by extreme ecstasy. I sort of passed out and woke up with my head in Victor Boudreau’s lap. He was gently stroking my hair, singing softly to me. We cuddled for about 20 minutes until I recovered.”

All of the affected reporters were eligible for government-funded psychological counselling to recover from their illness. However, that counselling program was discontinued as part of the cuts announced in yesterday’s budget.

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