FOR WHOM THE CLOCK TICKS
Four-time Walkley Award winning political commentator and Churchill Fellow, has returned to the fray over concern that the integrity of news dissemination is continually being threatened by a partisan media.
Most fair-minded Aussies would expect the ABC, when facing cuts, to look first at its own payroll consisting of those outrageous salaries it went to extreme lengths to cover up. Half its yearly budget of $1.2 billion is spent on paying staff it can obviously do without 400 of.
Ex-Fairfax hack, MD Mark Scott, is paying himself a ridiculous $800,000 p.a., plus exes, (more than Abbott or the US president is paid).
Now, you could understand if Mark Scott was required to work in a highly competitive industry where a Board, under shareholder pressure, demands profitability and where remuneration is publicly disclosed and failure has career-ending penalties, but the ABC for Christ’s sake?
Scott's only responsibility in life is to ensure every last penny of that $1.2 billion is spent so a CPI increase is guaranteed the following year. Nice job if you can get it!
So, each year, a secret $500,000,000 in taxpayer funds goes to paying a protected species of Lefties determined to destroy anything that smells of conservatism.
So where did Scott and his Chairman, Gillard appointee Jim Spigelman, decide to cut 5% over 5 years?
Well, naturally they took their knives to regional services, those very same services the ABC was originally set up to protect and nurture.
A responsible company facing hard times would have called the staff together and asked them to take a pay cut. That’s where the real ABC fat (50% of it) is!
But pay cuts aren’t in the DNA of Labor organisations and it’s far better to cut where the Abbott Government will feel the maximum blowback and the most pain... regionally!
The ABC is clearly out of control, it pays no regard to its charter, only ex-Alp staffers and the far Left are attracted to its ranks, and it does not even pretend to be balanced.
It has grown unchecked, into an ugly monster most people never watch. It covers no major sports, runs over 300 web sites, four TV channels, copious radio stations, and the Lefty online newspaper, “The Drum”.
It is milking the markets of mainstream media, many of whom are close to insolvency, in a grossly unfair fight for survival.
I struggle with just one web site and if I was offered assistance from a political Party, I would refuse it. I would rather go bust. Yet a bloated ABC has been blessed with overt assistance from the ALP at every turn, including a Gillard gift of the Asia Network, and Labor Board appointments in return for favourable coverage.
When Shorten struts the streets screaming, “Save our ABC” he speaks the truth.
I took a chance last night and turned on Q&A only to be faced with another anti-Murdoch tirade of abuse from some Communist American thespian supported by that despicable apologist for Islamic terrorism, Waleed Ali. “Click”, off again!
Recently I was asked to give my opinion of Rupert Murdoch for an SBS program but it very quickly became clear they only wanted some dirt. Unfortunately I happen think Murdoch is a good bloke, so my segment wasn’t used.
The ABC and the ALP are making as much political capital as possible out of a miniscule cut of 1% per year for 5 years! And the ABC has repeatedly led with their own story of disaster as if the sky had fallen in. If only media in general had to suffer such a non-cut.
Abbott is poorly advised... he lied about the cuts and should have explained why he lied rather than claim he didn’t. That silly move only gave Shorten a juicy platform on which to attack him over the lie and not the cuts themselves, which were a mere feather touch and more than justified.
Lying put Gillard on death row... but Abbott has proven to be a poor historian because when she claimed she hadn’t lied the appeals process was lost... the sentence was carried out.
Aussies are a forgiving lot if circumstances are explained to them but they will not cop being lied to, and if that lie is then denied, it’s goodnight Charlie... over and out.
Fiddling with 1% p.a. cuts to the ABC is pointless. A comprehensive reconstruction of this terribly un-Australian, unbalanced public broadcaster is necessary and what Abbott doesn’t get is that the damaging political fallout would be the same.
... probably less.