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sydney alternative media - non-profit community independent trustworthy
Sunday, 13 May 2007
Sunday political talkies: 6 month election marathon begins in earnest
Mood:  energetic
Topic: election Oz 2007



Author’s general introductory note (skip this if you know this regular weekly column):



This is not a well packaged story. It’s a contemporaneous traverse of the Sunday television free to air political talkies indicating the agenda of Establishment interests: Better to know ones rivals and allies  in Big Politics and Big Media. ]




Indeed it’s the tv version monitoring task similar to what Nelson Mandela refers to here in his book Long Walk to Freedom (1994, Abacus) written in Robben Island prison (where he was meant to die like other African resister chiefs of history in the 19C), at page 208




“..newspapers are only a shadow of reality; their information is important to a freedom fighter not because it reveals the truth, but because it discloses the biases and perceptions of both those who produce the paper and those who read it.”




Just substitute ‘Sunday tv political talkie shows’ for "newspapers" in the quote above.




For actual transcripts go to web sites quoted below except with Riley Diary on 7. And note transcripts don’t really give you the image content value.





Media backgrounder #1:




TV shows – kids shows very very green. Totally wild on 10 has Wilderness Society kids author. On 9 there was another one about paper recycling.




Then flicking back to Business Sunday its about business going green in sheet metal and printing all about natural capitalism of eliminating waste. It’s good thinking and good profit.




#2 Farewell Alex Mitchell, you are a champ.


We recall some cracking Naked Eye vignettes from Mitchell this last year or so. His call for VP Dick Cheney to be arrested as a war criminal in the Big Media no less. Wow.




His sledge today of the PM today disjunction over South Africa of yesteryear and Zimbabwe. True enough if unfortunate politicking as lives unravel in that latter country with life expectancy crashing. How very very cruel.




Then his comments in his column somewhere but also abc radio (now there is a medium for Big Alex in future, while he goes on diet as well) about jaded jaundiced local MP’s who get crushed by the factional party machine. Indeed, a real soul destroyer.




We were reminded of this quite accurate observation of Big Party sleaze by footage on Stateline last Friday night of bright and bushy Independent MP for Northern Tablelands (Armidale etc) Mr Torbay the new Boss of the Bearpit  of NSW Parliament  and son of immigrants from Lebanon. What a success story. And a real echo of Morris Iemma’s own life story and political career – who if he’d grown up in regional NSW, not the western suburbs of Sydney, would surely have been … Mr Torbay. Torbay presents as a younger peppy Clover Moore, or an energetic Mickey Mouse type figure with that black crop of hair. Judging from his homepage concerns about dental treatment for his people Torbay is popular for a reason, and no cartoon.

Another cracking comment was a few weeks back Iemma using Bret Walker SC in a PR inquiry into Ferry fatalities without review the actual fatalities. That's sleazy.


We noticed Alex has 5239 stories compared to our blog micro news this last 4 months of …232. Groan. Hope we don’t get jaded this next 35 years plus of blogging to catch up with veteran Alex.


#3 Trouble at mill - revealing lead story in The Australian Premier 'misleading' on mill benefits, with colour pic on front page and text, and cover story of colour supplement makes three bites at this issue, and substantiates the go big of Big Media proprieters to protect free speech and democracy as we know it reported in all Big Media on themselves, indicatively here:  

Media unites for free speech | The Daily Telegraph, United effort to save free speech | Media | The Australian, PM - Aust media condemn government controls, Media rally to fight threats to free speech - National - smh.com.au



Which calls up this oh so sharp letter by one "Dallas J Fraser, Gold Coast Qld" in this weekends colour mag from The Australian:


"Try as I might to approach "Scott of the ABC" with an open mind, my thoughts went back to the politicisation of the ABC over recent years, and appointments by the Prime Minister of the likes of Mark Scott who have come from a very select gene pool. Like many Australians, I grew up with Auntie and have always found her a reassuring influence. I hope my view of Scott is unfounded, however I get an uneasy feeling that his appointment has more to do with politics than the healthy evolution of our ABC"


One wonders if that is the Dallas wife of ex PM Malcolm Fraser. Also one wonders if the Big Media bosses are feeling a deal of existential angst having barracked so hard for removal of the NSW ALP, only to be repudiated by the electorate here March 07, and thus seeking a new Old Media raison detre by claiming the high moral ground on defence of democracy itself if not choosing state govt?


It was indeed an important message from them, and we prefer to take it on face value, but say it would be even more credible when they start complaining at a new media rival like say crikey.com.au being locked out of the Budget by Treasurer Costello, or this writer evicted from Sydney Uni Campus for reporting an anti govt rally recently.


We look forward to coverage of either story but won't hold our breath.


Getting back to the Tas pulp mill ecological atrocity, to underline how democracy is getting shaky there the Australian Financial Review (subscribers) p6 10 May 07 has this, opening line:


"A community group fighting Gunn's $1.5 billion Tasmanian pulp mill has refused to lodge a submission with the federal government's assessment process, fearing the forestry company might use  any adverse comments as the basis for legal action."


Broken democracy anyone?



10 Meet the Press 8-8.30 am




Features Sunday Telegraph front pager – PM Howard in trouble in his own seat of Bennelong (Murdoch Press), via Galaxy poll. Ouch.




Therese Rein Rudd wife putting Origin Energy shares in blind trust – must do this. Story in Herald Sun (Murdoch press).




Galaxy poll after budget shows PM in trouble still. No poll bounce as Howard conceded late Friday night.




Denies pork barrelling and boondoggelling (falls into trap of denials).


Film of Senator Brown, Greens failure of budget on climate change. Bonge refers to Democrats media release on fossil fools subsidies.


Vaile defensive: Transport fuels.




Vaile – “cyclical changes in our climate” – been there before, be there in the future. Real denial talk.




1st ad break NSW Teachers public primary education, friendly to ALP cause.




Panel is heavy thinkers Fran Kelly abc radio national breakfast and Clinton Porteus back from South America, ex ABC,with Courier Mail.


Vaile duly respectful of these two veterans.




Qantas exposed after take over [vagued out here, refer transcript], fairly boring tone from the Nats ‘leader’ chief RARA ‘accountant’.




Uni cap on full fee paying students – Barnaby Joyce wedging Govt similar to ALP support cap. Weakens Howard line against ALP.




Age viability Ron Boswell Nat senator at 66, for 6 years more? Hot question. Boswell looks fat and unhealthy to me.  Kelly asks why talent not being fostered quality candidate jumped ship. Says happens in all parties with a smile [that’s a bit close to home vis a vis this writer and Greens Party here].




Nicholson cartooning is very apt. Big spend, Rudd still wins affection with small ice cream from voters. That’s out take out too in the last few SAM posts this week.




Ad break 2, shortened public education advert as before. Yep it’s a long election slog for all of us.




Clive Hamilton – author of new-ish book Scorcher. Credible with academics, good researcher but with an edge and agenda, former RAC chief of researcher 1990-93 under Hawke, Keating (axed), still ALP aligned.




Lead question re Hawke/PM both similar – big quarry syndrome. Hawke more excuse science less frightening in the 1980ies.


Porteus - $740M budget, $200M international tree fund. Impressed? Negative, says political timing not affect tax cuts PR.




Hamilton refuses to take invitation of some credit – on forests says hopelessly discredited approach, very dismissive. “Worse than nothing” [Not quite objective is the clear implication of Porteus gist. Hamilton hangs tough versus other “green leaders” overtly.]




Don’t have 10 years as per IPCC and NASA. Very alarming.



Transcript in due course www.ten.com.au/meetthepress









7 Weekend Sunrise, 8.35-40 am Riley Diary




The old favourite – Groundhog Day – friendly Treasurer mates with Mark Riley. Also signed copy budget speech to Kochie, after Rudd Sunrise affair is a bit of a rapproachment.




Notes high election sloganeering at the Press Club, predicts sandwich boards on MP’s. [virtually true with PM in Bennelong yesterday].


An outstanding satire today.




Q and A. Notes Bennelong poll as per 10 above, economy against govt ?! Real possibility of Costello winning PM, Howard losing seat. Good week for govt, translates in polling much more dubious [as per Kerr at Crikey]. Polling will come back but how far?




New female compere has insight, compares Riley Diary to Hollywood melodrama – true.




Adbreak at 8.50 am public education advert again but this time secondary school subject matter. That’s serious money.


Presumably it will run on 9 also.







Sunday 9




Feature on Gordon Brown of the UK later in the show

Picture: Laurie Oaks has a loose fitting suit jacket today. He may have taken our hint at diet lifestyle etc made at the Federal Govt Sydney offices in Phillip St mid 2006 (the Costello non challenge) when we fawned but then eyeballed the Barrel with "How long are you going to keep going?". He said 'another 25 years' flippantly, as we shook hands, amused by our impertinence. His sidekick got shirty and I would say alarmed at the question. Steve Lewis grabbed the aggressor's attention, thanks Steve. Now it's clear Big Laurie is more of a Medium now, and good luck to the old warhorse with that sustainability agenda.

Story on Carl Williams organized crime killer or be killed. Big feature story in fact.


Important interview with Oaks/Gillard. Catch cry is “flexibility”, ongoing negotiation with mining industry, and “deception” of govt. Fractitious vibe with the somewhat skinnier Oakbarrel on a trend of better lifestyle – looking a bit stressed with it.


Keeps interrupting her for not answering the way he wants. Revealing Ch9 on the slide looking defensive?


Gillard also looking under a bit of pressure and embattled but that’s okay, she should be working hard.


Tony Blair took on the unions theme also from Insiders, Gillard says they have a distinct policy, balance right. Substantive but not exhaustive IR policy.


Oaks is virtually playing a bulldozer for his corporate employer to entrench AWAs. Sad stuff really. Gillard keeps coming back to balance. Turning into an enough rope exercise.


‘Still ways of getting flexibility without statutary individual contracts.’










Insiders 2




Long interview with PM, Zimbabwe issue high ground regardless of South Africa or the past (got that right PM in terms of lives now). Nothing really new in the interview, restating positions mainly free media profile. Galaxy poll etc as per 10 and 7 above.


Everyperson focus on two adult women mother and daughter.


Panel is Misha, Meglo and Akerman.


Paul Kelly soliloquy for ‘quality’ Murdoch Press. Never been a bigger budget. Clever  budget. Rehashing the above or previous SAM analysis. Economy is now a job creating machine. World economy is strong, commodity boom in place. Govt will argue don’t risk it. Complacency of voters not so much.


Advert – ALP for Rudd everyone is an economic conservative. Most important message in the election. Can’t spend more, more responsible. Safe pair of hands. Neutralising economy as an issue. If Rudd can neutralize this, then Rudd in very good position to win the election. Not so much the polls, who is the best economic manager.


Had to come up with something in Reply speech. Did so. Firm. Not a good week but got there with the Reply. Got to fix IR now.


Chatter on panel. Problem is lower end of wage market AWA no disadvantage test. 100K sells well says Meglogenis roughly double average annual income. Akerman as PM loyalist for his own career turns to Qld, research reckons Indigenous want flexibility on $60K. Only a niche, answers Cassidy.


Emerging consensus on the panel, less vexatious Akerman determined contraire.


Accurate discussion of role of fatigue as a main issue now. Discipline of Rudd’s office serious question. [they have to train and manage, cut the booze etc]



Replayed at 11.10 am on radio PNN 630 AM band.


Home page is http://www.abc.net.au/insiders/


Posted by editor at 11:13 AM NZT
Updated: Monday, 14 May 2007 10:21 AM NZT

Tuesday, 15 May 2007 - 5:19 AM NZT

Name: "Alex Turvey"
Home Page: http://www.independent-nsw.com

Dear SAM,

You state that if Morris Iemma had been brought up in the country he would be Mr Torbay.

Well actually, if that is the only difference between them THEN truly Morris Iemma IS MR Torbay.

You see Mr Torbay, like Mr Iemma was born and brought up in the city. Mr Torbay attended Kingswood High School 1974-1977. He later moved away from Sydney and in 1980 commenced employment at the UNE,Armidale as a kitchen-hand. He has lived in Armidale ever since.

What he did and where he lived between 1977 and 1980 is not known - they are the missing years.



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