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"...public opinion deserves to be respected as well as despised" G.W.F. Hegel, 'Philosophy of Right'

dead meat « Previous | |Next »
May 1, 2004

This guy is dead meat, politically speaking:
CartoonTandberg2.jpg
Tandberg

He is Professor David Flint, the Chair of the Australian Broadcasting Authority,--the regulator of the communications market. He has been writing fan mail to Alan Jones, a shockjock over at 2GB, (Sydney Radio) on the ABA's letterhead. Just a little example of the way Flint acts without integrity and impartiality when the ABA was investigating the issue cash-for-comment. There are other examples.

Alan Jones' breakfast radio programme at 2GB wields a lot of power because of its daily audience size, Jones' easy access to senior conservative politicians and his ability to set the political agenda in Sydney. So federal conservative politicians--eg., the PM--- bypass the Canberra Press Gallery filter and appear on the Jones breakfast programme. Jones is seen to be the King of Sydney broadcast radio. Good to have on your side.

Howard, Flint, Jones and Laws. A tight media/political circle. One with lots of reverberation. This is what Bob Carr, the Premier of NSW, had to say to the ABC about Flint, as reported by Crikey.com


I think he's too partisan, I think he's involved in arguments about national affairs from a partisan viewpoint. I don't think anyone would seriously argue anymore that he would carry public confidence. If John Howard is a conservative, has respect for our institutions, and that by definition is what conservatives believe in a respect for our institutions he should say to Professor Flint, you've been too partisan, you've embarrassed the Government as it happens, but I've got to have an ABA that can command respect.

A regulator (the ABA) that commands respect is one that it is distanced from government, consists of persons whose duty is to further the public good not foster partisan interest. It is also one that needs powers. As Richard Ackland observes, the rorts in the cash-for-comments indicate the need to strengthen the power of the regulator. Ackland says:


"...the ABA recommended that the Broadcasting Services Act be amended to give it power to remedy this form of fudging. It called for proper sanctions so it could properly respond to serious breaches of the code, it asked to be able to enforce advertising-free periods, it wanted the power to ban presenters from broadcasting, it sought to be able to require on-air corrections, or the findings of the ABA to be broadcast, the power to impose civil penalties, and injunctive relief where there have been breaches of the act."

The partisan Flint, of course, dismisses the claims about his conflict of interest as mere lefty elite chatter in the twilight of the (social democratic) idols. However, it is just a matter of time before the compromised Professor Flint goes. Twilight is falling around this particular conservative elite.

Will Flint fall on his sword? Will he cut his wrists and let the blood drip on the sandstone during a glorious sunset? Will he ritually disembowl himself?

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 2:14 PM | | Comments (0) | TrackBacks (3)
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Listed below are links to weblogs that reference dead meat:

» politics and media from Junk for Code
The bottom figure is John Howard, the PM of Australia. The middle figure is Alan Jones, the king of breakfast [Read More]

» Bonfire of the vanities from Back Pages
Unlike his ability to manage infrastructure (Sydney's trains have all stopped again to day), Bob Carr knows a soft target when he sees one. Flinty "should go. He should go now", says Bob in today's Sun-Herald. Blessed with a... [Read More]

» Bonfire of the vanities from Back Pages
Unlike his ability to manage infrastructure (Sydney's trains have all stopped again today), Bob Carr knows a soft target when he sees one. Flinty "should go. He should go now", says Bob in today's Sun-Herald. Blessed with a beautiful... [Read More]

 
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