The Certainty Myth

Posted on 5 CommentsPosted in Financial journalism, Financial News, Government Policy and Regulation, Political News

  “The uncertain election result is the worst possible outcome and the major parties and crossbenchers must act quickly to form a government, business leaders say.” – AAP, July 3, 2016 Since when did the primary role of government become providing “certainty” to the business community? In fact, it’s hard to read a newspaper or turn on the TV these days without some rent-seeking plutocrat whining about the democratic […]

Damned Lies and Journalism

Posted on 48 CommentsPosted in Craft Standards, Ethical Standards, News Corp, Newspapers, Political News

“Oz polls show nothing can save this miserable govt. Election can not come soon enough.People decided and tuned out months ago.” — Rupert Murdoch(@rupertmurdoch) May 19, 2013 ‘The nation is drowning in debt. The federal government has lost control of public finances. The NBN is a disaster. Business is struggling because union thugs are destroying productivity growth. We are being overwhelmed with illegal boat arrivals. Refugees are living on […]

Of Human Bondage

Posted on 23 CommentsPosted in ABC, Craft Standards, Financial News

An increasingly unhinged Australian mainstream media, with a few honourable exceptions, has been revving up the scary-o-meter in recent days about this country facing a future of debt, deficits and public penury for as far as the eye can see.   “A decade of deficits spells a bleak future for Australians,” was the headline on the increasingly tabloid ABC television news, warning of a crisis bigger than the one […]

Media Stockholm Syndrome

Posted on 9 CommentsPosted in Craft Standards, Financial journalism, Public Interest, Staffing and Resources

‘Twenty Ways to Bulk Up Your Cash’. That was the breathless headline in The Australian Financial Review on September, 27, 2005 “It’s shop till you drop for ordinary people with money to park,” the article gushed. “And the range of investment options is so vast, it’s very nearly an embarrassment of riches.”

Future Shockers

Posted on 35 CommentsPosted in Craft Standards, Digital Media, Financial News, Media Business, Staffing and Resources

“Prediction is very difficult, particularly about the future.” Journalists would do well to keep in mind that aphorism from influential Danish physicist Nils Bohr when quoting “experts” about the outlook for financial markets, the economy and politics.

Spinning Wheel

Posted on 26 CommentsPosted in ABC, Craft Standards, Education, Financial News, Political News, Staffing and Resources

A health warning to mainstream media consumers: When a news story starts with the words “is expected to”, activate the BS detector. When that story involves forecasts about economic statistics, shift detector to warp speed.

A Day in the Life

Posted on 21 CommentsPosted in Craft Standards, Financial journalism, Newspapers, Political News

I read the news today. Oh boy. Apparently, Australia is now a socialist dictatorship run by red rag shop stewards stealing the legitimate rewards of those with enterprise and throwing it away on the undeserving poor. “Once again, nothing in it for me,” said  ‘Single Dad’ in the comments section of a Sydney Morning Herald analysis from Adele Ferguson describing Wayne Swan’s fifth budget as ‘Class Warfare’. Over at […]

Black Budget Blasts Blueblood Battlers

Posted on 10 CommentsPosted in Government Policy and Regulation, Political News

Don’t talk about alleged “middle class welfare” to Prudence Hetherington-Alswyth. This is a woman who already felt she had sacrificed enough. And now with Wayne Swan’s heartless  budget, her struggling family feels it has reached rock bottom. This is their story.

Going Analog

Posted on 3 CommentsPosted in ABC, Craft Standards, Public Broadcasting, Public Interest, Staffing and Resources

It is less than 20 years ago that the US financial news organisation I then worked for started asking journalists to put an email address at the bottom of every story. I remember snorting at the presumption that our readers were as nerdish as our tech-head editor in Washington. Move on two decades and we find journalists doing the bulk of their work over the internet – through research, […]

The Mega Perspective

Posted on 8 CommentsPosted in Books, Education, Financial journalism, Government Policy and Regulation

Good journalists still exist. It’s just that these days,with few exceptions, they tend to exist despite, rather than because of, the media organisations that employ them. One is Laura Tingle, who continues to write penetrating and original analysis of politics. Another is George Megalogenis, whose sober, measured style and grasp of historical detail make him one of the few remaining reliable chroniclers of Australian political economy (and one of the […]