The view from Channel Nine

As I said on a previous post, the best way to get a handle on how most voters are perceiving the campaign is to watch the first ten minutes of a commercial tv news bulletin. By way of illustration, Channel Nine viewers heard Tony Abbott tonight decrying debt and deficit and promising to save $1.2 billion by cutting bureaucracy.

That’s about it, apart from the PM claiming to be an economic conservative, and Real Action Man Abbott riding his bike around Melbourne this morning.

All this was bumped from the top news spot in Queensland by a story about a recall of dangerous baby products.

You’d have had to watch the 7.30 Report to have heard Wayne Swan point out that very little of the Coalition’s claimed savings are anything of the sort (selling Medibank Private or abolishing the NBN not being savings on recurrent expenditure, not to mention the fact that they’re still claiming phantom savings from the RSPT).

And you’d have to have gone to Peter Martin’s blog to find out that the list of ‘savings’ today aren’t particularly related to bureaucrats. But not to have heard Tony Abbott’s homily about belt tightening. Or Joe Hockey comparing Wayne Swan to Paris Hilton, and being rightly asked by a journo about using silly metaphors about women’s sexuality. That you would have got from Channel Nine.

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Posted in elections, federal election 2010
22 comments on “The view from Channel Nine
  1. hannah's dad says:

    You would have had to see the front page of the [SA?] Stock and Land Journal to see a full page photo of Julia smiling with a pretty rural scene in the background.
    Sound nice?
    But the blurb said something like this:
    “This is the closest thing you will get to seeing PM Gillard in a rural setting. A digitally enhanced photo.
    She has not visited a rural region since …whenever [I only glanced].”
    Not so nice.

  2. paul walter says:

    Wayne Swan is the more attractive of the two .
    A recall of “dangerous baby products” sounds a worry, maybe it comes in theboning process, when the flesh is seperated from the bone and gristle prior to being shipped to pie factories across the nation.
    More seriously, it is a conservative move byTV stations to run that sort of item ahead of election coverage, it links the politicians, particularly progessives, to a notion of politics as alien threat to the hearth, a sense of disquiet arises in the mortgage belt, and up go the shutters again, as consideration of issues becomes itself discouraged ; a treason against the hearth, that “we” know is under threat from anonymous latte-sippers.

  3. KeIthy says:

    It would seem that no matter what channel is presenting: THE LIBS HAVE LOST THEIR SMIRK!

  4. Sam says:

    This election is shaping up as mind numbingly boring. The public don’t care. There is no love for the government, but no mood to change the government either.

  5. Nickws says:

    To be fair the commercial news bulletins’ national political coverage is just a truncated version of the standard ABC reporting these days, and I include the 7:30 Report in that ‘standard’—that was the programme that breathlessly told me about how Gillard and co. were very clever in fixing the asylum seeker problem with their genius outreach to East Timor. They were even rigorous enough to include a taped, softball interview with Minister Evans. Sterling journalism, that.

    I see David Spears, chief political correspondent of Sky News, is to be the moderator for the leaders debate. He’s actually not as bad as his job description sounds.

    O’Brien would be my first preference, but Spears is better than Tony Jones ever could be. The voters don’t need no meeja interrogators who enjoy meta-commenting on the very questions they’re supposed to be asking our elected representatives.

  6. paul walter says:

    Nickws, any resemblence between those six thirty soapies called commercial tv news and the real deal faded years ago. They are there to reinforce the cognitive isolation that ensures their own control of their viewers through ego massage and prejudice born of ignorance reinforced by tendentious sensationalism.
    If real news gets on the commercials, its only because they have so deteriorated that they no longer understand what “news”is, or fear upsetting the viewers during the evening infeed of advertising.

  7. Nickws says:

    paul walter, I was talking down Aunty, not talking up Laurie Oakes.

  8. paul walter says:

    Well, like Labor, the ABC has gone downmarket.
    If there is a single disappointment that rankles with this poster more than virtually any other Labor failure, it has been the refusal to repair the damage done by Howard, Alston and co to public broadcasting.

  9. haiku says:

    Assuming Paris Hilton is unmarried, then she would be actually be celibate. Perhaps not chaste. Joe needs to work on his similes. Or maybe he’s letting on that the budget deficit and level of net debt is actually not a concern.

    (Yes, I know there is a modern connotation of celibacy = chastity.)

  10. Labor Outsider says:

    Haiku, according to the Oxford dictionary, the primary definition of celibate is abstaining from marriage and sexual relations. It moved on from the french (via latin) meaning of merely unmarried a long time ago. Languages evolve. There is nothing, technically, wrong with Hockey’s simile. His taste on the other hand…

  11. OldSkeptic says:

    Shades of the 1930’s.

    Australia, along with the US and Germany suffered the worst during the Great Depression.

    In Australia’s case because it was a debtor nation and when it hit,’balancing the budget’ was far more impotant than anything else. Love of money was more important than anything. So some people starved and the country fell into a hole.

    Then WW2 broke and this bankrupt little country was all alone. Coudn’t even make a gun here.

    Took till 1942 before (I’ve got the books) the Govt realised that money was irrelevent, only real resources .. especially skilled workers mattered!

    Ended up the war making planes, tanks, ships .. etc. Heck we even made jet engines here and own radar and computers!!!

    That was an aberation so we have regressed back to the love of money again (and a mine and a declining farm). And we will keep doing it, while lying all the time about unemployment, cutting investment, cutting R&D, cutting manufacturing, cutting training, etc, etc, sadly etc.

    Don’t worry your house price will rise … not.

    But money? Sadly no one admits it is all non existant/borrowed/created/used as a vehicle to enright the elite/etc of course.

    Especially the RBA and the ‘official’ commentators. Some of them would even argue for infinate population, infinate house prices and infinate debt. Financial market sophistication will save the day! Joke, nope, look at the RBA paper in Dec 2006 (

    God help us we are doomed, ruled by corrupt morons, surrounded by idiots, manipulated by sociopaths, with an idiot media commentator cheering squad (usefull idiots as Lenin used to say or propoganda units as Stalin ordered).

    The Right ascendent, the left gone (now all wannabee right actually). The scientists and the logical ignored, the future .. ugly.

    And we are all ‘free’ to vote for the Laboral/Libor party. Better if they just merge and become a single party so we can be at least honest that we are a just another one party state.

  12. Cuppa says:

    Paul Walter wrote:

    If there is a single disappointment that rankles with this poster more than virtually any other Labor failure, it has been the refusal to repair the damage done by Howard, Alston and co to public broadcasting.

    It’s bitterly disappointing to see how the ABC has gone downmarket and politicised in the past year or two. I’d be interested to hear what you believe the Labor government could (or could have) do/ne to repair the damage that’s been clearly been done.

  13. OldSkeptic says:

    The previous comment is deliberately challenging to try to break to the bounds of the propaganda that we are all limited to .. even in this forum.

    Propaganda .. it works. Channel 9 (et al) are the Pravdas of the modern era.

    Tell a lie, backed by the ‘media’, big end of town owned of course. People believe it. “The big lie’ told over and over.

    Add in human stupidity. I’ll take a guess of a poll of this forum, my guess at least 50% believe in astrology, 50% in homeopathy, 50% in ghosts, 50% in a religion of some sort., et al.

    Example: Boat people. Howard ( brilliant) Banged the drum on this, people believed it .. and missed the fact the Howard increased immigration to the highest level in Australian history. Australians felt all safe and cuddly and the BCA loved it. Note Rudd, in one of his first acts as a newly elected head of the Laboral party increased that by 10%.

    But of course no media outlet said that or gave the numbers.

    Note also, no 10% increase in the necessary infrastructure investment needed.

    Unemployment: Even the ‘media’ keep talking about low Australian unemployment. Actually its (ABS stats) 15-20%.

    Chabbel (deliberate sic) 9,7,ABC, .. Pravdos of their day. Truth .. accidental.

  14. Mr Denmore says:

    Cuppa, they could have got rid of the troglodytes on the board for a start and maybe have a close look at Mark Scott’s contract.

    Channel Nine and the ABC aren’t much different these days and that’s the way Scott wants it, basically using his experiment in commercialising the public broadcaster to parlay his way into a more lucrative job in commercial media eventually.

    They could stop spreading their resources so thinly by setting up a grandiose and redundant 24/7 television news channel (who watches cable news except for political junkies and day traders?) and spend the money instead boosting reporting resources on rip-and-read news radio.

    They could cut the spend on importing third rate British comedies and boost their acquisitions of classy and provocative documentaries.

    They could stop becoming another distribution arm of News Ltd by ceasing interviewing Murdoch hacks. They could employ their own finance journalists rather than relying on Alan Bloody Kohler.

    They could throw away the stop-watches and Nazi-like policing of “balance” and put an end to the he said-she said gutless and lazy journalism they now blandly specialise in.

    They could be a public broadcaster instead of a pale imitation of the wallpaper that masquerades as news on the commercial networks…

  15. akn says:

    Paul Walter:

    If there is a single disappointment that rankles with this poster more than virtually any other Labor failure, it has been the refusal to repair the damage done by Howard, Alston and co to public broadcasting.

    Exactly. That major failure that goes to Rudd’s contempt, shared by other ruling castes within the political domain, for citizens.

  16. tssk says:

    I disagree. As I’ve said before I think Rudd was trying not to politicise the ABC board further. He was the first PM for a long time not to pressure the ABC for negative coverage.

    And look at how he was rewarded for it.

    He did the right thing. (And it’s going to save time once Abbott is voted in.)

  17. Joe says:


    great post! I think the mining industry in Australia distorts the economy by “sucking all the air out of the room” along the lines you suggest. [Capitalism cannot abide a limit.] We should clamp down on mining, make it truly as environmentally friendly as possible and look to useful green technologies, which would help us to deal with the dwindling energy resources which we have.

  18. Robert Merkel says:

    Does anybody listen to the commercial FM radio news bulletins? I’m curious as to how they’re covering the campaign.

    FWIW, I also checked out the 7PM Project on Channel 10. It’s not as bad as you might think, but its interest in the campaign so far has been pretty limited – which isn’t all that silly a piece of news judgment given that there has been nothing whatsoever substantive so far.

  19. […] posted last night on the view from the commercial news. Watching the ABC news, it occurred to me that it’s gone […]

  20. paul walter says:

    Gee tssk, Labor would not havebeen “politicising “public broadcasting, that was done previously. It should have been about restoring balance, not reinforcing it, but Conroy and co embraced the latter.

  21. Paul Burns says:

    5 pm Newsa on Channel 10 seems to take politics seriously. Meanwhile, Abbott can’t appear on the 7.30 Report because he’s on Hey Hey Its saturday. JFC!

  22. […] The view from Channel Nine II by kimberella on July 21, 2010 For an explanation of why I’m writing these posts, see last night’s entry. […]

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