Sunday, September 18, 2011

MEDIA: American-owned newspaper plays the Manne

It was bound to happen. That American-owned newspaper that likes to call itself The Australian has shown itself to be the 'Heart of the Nation' with a vicious and vitriolic attack on La Trobe University academic Robert Manne.

And why? Because Professor Manne wrote 25,000 critical words about the paper.

And in its response, The Oz left not a single angle uncovered, with even an exceptionally tasteful cartoon showing Manne ... wait for it ... sitting naked on the toilet and farting.

It really was intelligent stuff from The Oz. I'm just wondering whether they had to tap Manne's phone to put all this together.

Then again, to be fair, Manne probably doesn't keep his mobile in the dunny.

Perhaps the most hilarious feature of the critique was that they couldn't get regular indigenous writer Noel Pearson (or indeed any indigenous writer) to respond to Manne's criticism of The Oz's coverage of indigenous issues. Instead, Uncle Chris Mitchell from the WelovetheNTIntervention Tribe was given (or rather, gave himself) the task of responding.

Seriously, is it any wonder The Oz is fast losing as much credibility as it is readers and revenue? Perhaps they should stick to printing shonky op-eds.

I feel sorry for all the genuinely good journos and writers and photographers and other media professionals who have to share page and website space with this kind of near-psychotic babble. I mean, all that vitriol for one single politics academic?

UPDATE I: A regular writer for The Oz (who once wrote for Crikey) goes completely ballistic on his Facebook wall, describing Manne's

... grotesque and evil approach to the Malaysian solution ...


Words © 2011 Irfan Yusuf