Thursday, December 5, 2013

Simply the Best

Did you know that The Australian is the Satchmo of Australian newspapers? That's because no other newspaper blows its own trumpet in quite the same way.

Rock your sox off with this bravura editorial performance/toxic spray from yesterday's emission:

"Regardless of what he is writing about - the Gallipoli centenary, Labor's existential turmoil or the policy pratfalls of a new government, as he is today - our editor-at-large, Paul Kelly, brings his penetrating insight and peerless authority. The Australian is blessed with writers such as Dennis Shanahan on politics, Greg Sheridan on foreign affairs, John Durie on business and Judith Sloan and David Uren on economics, and many others in the top rank, who have lived through the big moments in the nation's history and are able to provide readers with a sense of perspective, knowledge and balance on the issues of the day. Along with experienced editors, they allow us to cut through the noise and tumult of a frenetic news cycle to explain events.

"Yet that can't be said of all media outlets, especially when seasoned journalists are being traded for ones unable to see beyond the dazzle of the instantaneous fix of Twitter or web-first publishing. These callow reporters and trainee talking heads are setting the pace at Fairfax Media and the ABC with their 'breaking' views and zippy analysis 5 minutes after something has happened. We can see the crude results in the way the Abbott government is being portrayed as bad, mad and chaotic by the baby faces in the press gallery and beyond. To date, the low-point of juvenilia was struck by John van Tiggelen, editor of the The Monthly*, old enough to know better but clueless about Canberra, who wrote about the Abbott government's 'onanistic reverence for John Howard' and described it as 'the frat party of Young Liberals who refuse to grow up'.

"This twaddle would be harmless if these ill-informed innocents were on the fringes of new media, learning their craft in the minor leagues. Alarmingly, these infantile musings reflect the priorities of their organisations: it's a reverse-publishing model, which sees the trivialities of Generation Y setting the agenda for once-venerable newspapers, which traditionally served older, educated, middle-income readers in Sydney and Melbourne. No wonder Fairfax Media editors have lost touch with loyal readers and the respect of the old-hands still in the newsroom. At the ABC, Triple-J alumni have wrested editorial and cultural control in the face of insipid leadership from managing director Mark Scott and his news director, Kate Torney. You wonder if anyone's really in charge at Pyrmont, Docklands and Ultimo and how long this idiocy can last." (Comment should not be cheap: Juveniles are setting the standard at Fairfax and the ABC)

[*Here's a tip: buy a copy of the Dec-Jan Monthly and read My Beautiful Bromance with Tony Abbott by Greg Sheridan. Its 'infantile musings', 'Gen Y trivialities', and general, all-round 'idiocy' will have you in the proverbial aisles. Who needs Barbara Cartland if you've got Greg Sheridan?]

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Fairfax and ABC with their "breaking views", The Australian with its "breaking winds".