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  1. Bad News - Chapter 9

    ... two. The first is the more straightforward. The fact that News Limited owns 70 per cent of the newspapers in Australia represents a ... If Rupert Murdoch, the chairman and chief executive of News Corporation, was an apolitical or a distant figure, the threat might be ... of 70 per cent of Australia’s newspaper market. The issue is not the absence of alternative sources of information for politically ... hundreds of easily accessible sources of information. The issue is rather the capacity of News Limited to influence the opinions of the ... problem. It poses a real and present danger to the health of Australian democracy. The Murdoch stranglehold over the daily press must be ... that has the support of one and a half million of the nation’s citizens. By its own admission it has devoted itself to the task of ... for this essay are available at the end of the book. Bad News - Chapter 9 ...


  2. Bad News - Chapter 7

    ... On 27 September 2010, James Massola, a young member of the Australian ’s Canberra press gallery, published an article called ... to pursue what amounts to vanity publishing on the net to an issue of freedom of speech.” Massola wrote a follow-up article. He argued ... disease which, as I write these words at the height of the News of the World disgrace, seems to have afflicted the entire British nation. At this point, surely, it was reasonable to assume that the Grog’s ... sure it was less offensive than Bess Price.” It was a bad joke; a sour joke; a joke with a political sting. But it was a joke. Old ... the problem. No phone call came. Instead, in the next issue of the NIT , Behrendt read that her column had been terminated. It was ...


  3. Man-Made World - Chapter 8

    BAD NEWS Correspondence Nick Cater Given the tone of Robert Manne’s ... interventions in the national debate, his study of the Australian was unlikely to have been entirely complimentary. Nevertheless, ... hours of transcribed interviews Manne conducted with the Australian ’s senior staff could best be described as “helping police with ... at all, as Manne explained to Peter van Onselen in a Sky News interview:  I didn’t find any of the things that [editor-in-chief ... Quarterly Essay represents a substantial investment in the nation’s cultural capital and the series is a credit to its publisher, Morry ... on the wrong side of the argument, you just have to be bad. No wonder he is irritated to see his arguments challenged in the pages of ...


  4. Political Amnesia: Chapter 1

    ... Much is said about the dumbing-down of politics; the 24-hour news cycle; too much polling and poll-driven politics; the decline of community ... by a conscious analysis of what might have changed since the issue was last considered. This thought first struck me a few years ago ... ride through office. In 2012 child care suddenly became the issue of the day. The prime minister called an “emergency child-care ... than the public sector, and that governments in general are bad. All sorts of public policy has been built on these foundations: government debt is always bad; contracting out is good; the public sector should adopt the managerialism ... Howard’s push back against what he saw as a self-censoring Australian political discussion had its own fallout. It gave room for people ...


  5. Trivial Pursuit - Chapter 4

    ... a necessary evil in politics for decades. The first poll of Australian attitudes was published in the old Melbourne Herald in October ... of letters that make the modern rumble between Labor and News Limited resemble a contrived bout of WWF wrestling. In one letter, Menzies ... misread its symptom – the rise of Pauline Hanson’s One Nation protest party – as Labor’s cue to disown the reform cause. The ... a big Australia prime minister. Immigration is the defining issue in the battle of wills between politicians and the polls, because voters, ... be rolled. Lobby groups just have to wait for a couple of bad polls before they put the squeeze on government. It may be a ... is less reliable now than it was in the 1990s. An election-shaping segment of population, Generation Y, can’t be surveyed because it ...