Barnaby Joyce has come (no pun intended) and Barnaby Joyce has gone, but one issue that is intimately connected with the circus that surrounded him for the last three weeks has yet to be subjected to any scrutiny.
And that is the highly incestuous relationship that exists between Australian journalists and politicians and often results in news being concealed from the public.
The Australian media examined the scandal around Deputy Prime Minister Joyce from many angles, ever since a picture of his pregnant mistress, Vikki Campion, appeared on the front page of the The Daily Telegraph.
Continue reading Joyce affair: incestuous relationship between pollies and journos needs some exposure
Australian cricket authorities are short-charging fans of the national Twenty20 competition, the Big Bash League, through their policies on releasing players from national duty when needed by their BBL sides for crucial encounters.
The Adelaide Strikers and the Hobart Hurricanes, who contested Sunday’s final, were both affected by this policy.
Adelaide won, but had they failed to do so, no doubt there would have been attention drawn to the fact that their main fast bowler, Billy Stanlake, did not play as he was on national duty to play in a tri-nation tournament involving New Zealand and England.
Continue reading Cricket Australia needs to get player availability policies sorted
The year that ends today was remarkable for one thing on the media front that has gone largely unnoticed: the fall from grace of one of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s brightest stars who has long been a standard-setter at the country’s national broadcaster.
Sarah Ferguson was the journalist’s journalist, seemingly a woman of fierce integrity, and one who pandered to neither left nor right. When she sat in for Leigh Sales, the host of 7.30, the main current affairs programme, for six months while Sales was on a maternity leave break, the programme seemed to come to life as she attacked politicians with vigour and fearlessness.
There was bite in her speech, there was knowledge, there was surprise aplenty. Apart from the stint on 7.30, she brought depth and understanding to a long programme on the way the Labor Party tore itself to bits while in government for six years from 2007, a memorable TV saga.
Continue reading All your gods have feet of clay: Sarah Ferguson’s fall from grace
Last year, Australia’s national Twenty20 competition, the Big Bash League, had 32 league games plus three finals. It was deemed a great success.
But the organiser, Cricket Australia, is not content with that. This year, there will be 40 games followed by the two semi-finals and the final. And the tournament will drag on into February.
This means many of the same cricketers will be forced to play those eight extra games, putting that much more strain on their bodies and minds. How much cricket can people play before they become jaded and reduced to going through the motions?
Continue reading Too much of anything is good for nothing
Two failed bids for the presidency notwithstanding, it looks very much like Hillary Clinton is intent on making a bid to be the Democrat candidate for president in 2020.
That is possibly the only reason why she continues to scour the world for opportunities to gain publicity, instead of accepting that she was beaten fair and square in the 2016 elections and retires from public life.
Clinton was on the Australian ABC TV channel on Monday night, getting a soft interview with the normally ferocious Sarah Ferguson which ran for all of 50 minutes.
Continue reading Hillary Clinton should disappear into the sunset
This morning, for the first time in nearly 18 years, I did not run apt-get update on my server to look for any software updates. The reason is, I can’t. There is no server; it was decommissioned on Saturday, a decision that was forced on me. I have hosted my domains myself ever since I bought them.
Yes, the government forced me to do it. Pardon me while I take a rather circuitous route to explain.
Australia is in the laborious process of rolling out a broadband network across the nation; due to political wrangling, the rollout has been something like the Shakespearean drama The Comedy of Errors.
Continue reading Venturing into the world of external hosting
In a recent interview with Newsweek after the release of her film, Risk, the Oscar-winning filmmaker Laura Poitras asks “What is the motivation of the source?” as part of a reply to a question about a decision on what is newsworthy.
That should tell an observant reader one thing: Poitras may be 53, but she it still very naive. Every leak that ends up on the front or other pages of a publication, or on the TV screen, emanates from someone with an axe to grind.
Perhaps one is looking for a business advantage and leaks some details about a rival. Or else, one may be from one political faction and looking to gain an advantage over a rival faction.
Continue reading All your gods have feet of clay: even at 53, some people don’t know that
AUSTRALIA is likely to regret pushing Patrick Cummins into Test cricket before he has had a chance to play at least one season of matches in the Sheffield Shield to test out his body.
That Australia is not good at monitoring its players is evident from Mitchell Starc’s breaking down in India. Starc was ruled out of the India series after two Tests, with a stress fracture in his right foot.
As the cricket website espncricinfo has detailed, Starc is no stranger to injuries: he has been suffering from a spate of them right from December 2012.
Continue reading Australia taking a big risk by playing Cummins
ONE of the big problems that people from Western countries have is that they are unable to admit to any wrongdoing when they are caught out in a confrontation with someone from the East.
They are never wrong even when they are caught red-handed. Remember Lance Armstrong?
It is this mentality that prevents Steven Smith, the captain of Australia’s cricket team, from pretending that he was not trying to consult members of his team in the pavilion before deciding whether to have an LBW decision reviewed during the final innings of the second Test against India in Bangalore on Tuesday (March 7).
Continue reading Steve Smith cheated. Admit it, and move on, mate
Dean Jones is one of those many former Australian cricketers who now earns big bucks as a commentator on the sport. Like many others, he has little of import to say, but takes up 700 or 800 words to do so.
Jones was sacked by Ten Sports in 2006 for making a racist comment about South Africa’s Hashim Amla. But he has slowly crept back, with the Melbourne newspaper The Age helping in his rehabilitation by giving him a weekly column.
One would think that a man who goes around referring to Muslim players as terrorists would be shunned by publications that claim to have standards.
Continue reading ‘The terrorist has got another wicket’