September 05, 2003


ABC free-speech dissident Stephen Crittenden is back at work, but not completely out of trouble:

Crittenden was stood down six weeks ago for failing to get approval to run an article in The Sydney Morning Herald.

It is believed that the guilty verdict stands and a formal warning is recorded on Crittenden's personnel file. Crittenden is believed to be pursuing legal options.

One Radio National worker, who did not want to be named, said the finding meant Crittenden had been muzzled in future.

"We are seeing a much stricter approach to ABC staff doing things outside," the journalist said. "That means there will be two classes. Those on contracts like Virginia Trioli and Phillip Adams can commentate with impunity, but full-time staff members are under tight control."

Two classes? At a stupidocracy like the ABC? Unheard of.

Posted by Tim Blair at September 5, 2003 12:34 AM

i think gerard henderson does the best job of summing up the problems at the ABC:

In any event, from now on, the Prime Minister and his advisers can no longer pass on responsibility for the condition of the public broadcaster. John Howard handpicked Donald McDonald as ABC chairman who, in turn, appointed Jonathan Shier (and Russell Balding) who, in turn, chose all the current key ABC personnel: namely Sandra Levy (television), Sue Howard (radio) and Max Uechtritz (news and current affairs). What's more, all the present members of the ABC board, apart from the staff-elected representative, have been appointed by the Howard Government.
it was sue howard who appointed mark collier, the ex-2ue news director [he "discovered" ray hadley] who originally decided to suspend crittenden.

Posted by: adam at September 5, 2003 at 01:09 AM

The cause of the problems at the ABC is not entirely addressable by a few managers (assuming they even desire to address it).

There is an ingrained corporate culture of left-wing bias that affects the entire organisation. This is combined with a stultifying internal hierarchy and an entrenched unionism that makes it extremely difficult to change anything.

John Howard can't be blamed for an organisational corrosion that has been proceeding steadily for decades.

Posted by: Evil Pundit at September 5, 2003 at 02:55 AM

It ain't about the ABC, it's about you Tim Blair and the bullshit lies you and your rightwing attack dogs think you can trick everyone with day in day out.

But your time in the sun is coming to an end. People have had enough of your lies and insipid charges of treason to anyone that doesn't do what you want.

You are chickenhawk cowards and when push comes to shove you fucks are out the door in 2004.

You are headed for the dustbins of history you pathetic fraud of a journalist. Go do a real interview Tim, go do some real research Tim, go write an article that you don't just cut and paste Tim.

Meanwhile, there's a war going on that you wanted, so get your cowardly arse into gear and go enlist and show us what a big brave bloke from Oz you keep telling the world you are.

But I guess with Friday here, it's time to go lunch and bitch and moan about the progressive, liberal appeasers that just won't bend over for another smack from Tim Blair the Gen X SuperBrave - or should we say SuperStupid.

Posted by: Big Hawk at September 5, 2003 at 04:21 AM

Of all Big Hawk's obsessions, "lunch" is my favourite. I might start posting a daily lunch menu, complete with another of his obsessions: "expensive wine".

Posted by: tim at September 5, 2003 at 04:35 AM

You're the elitist toss that uses similar turns of phrase to abuse and demonise your own opponents. This is just an exercise in turning it around and dumping it all back on you Tim. You give it out so take it like the big brave man you tell us you are.

Anyway get showered, dressed and go on down to the Pitt St ADF office now you pathetic coward. You think aircon for the troops is going to win you victory in Iraq.

It really does show what a stupid war this is, with a stupid bunch of shit-for-brain chickenhawks like you at the sidelines saying "bring it on". Well you go get it on - the uniform you want others to wear, but which you are too cowardly to wear yourself.

You wanted this war, so go put your own sorry Gen X arse on the line for something you so much believe in. You got a free university education so do something for your country.

But instead it will lunch yet again in some chic inner city restaurant where you can compare house prices and giggle at how much money we've all made. You ought to be ashamed of yourself Tim - others are dying while you lunch.

Posted by: Big Hawk at September 5, 2003 at 08:13 AM

Hey, Big Hawk, your bot is stuck on "lunch." Check your code.

Posted by: Andrea Harris at September 5, 2003 at 10:18 AM

I reckon with his obsession on lunch, hawkie must work for the ABC, down there in the Winter Palace on Harris Strret, just a few steps away from all those trendy city restaurants. With all that rage, careful you don't choke on your macchiato, mate.

Posted by: Fred at September 5, 2003 at 11:03 AM

Perhaps Hawky's on the Michael Moore instant weight-gain diet.

Posted by: Evil Pundit at September 5, 2003 at 11:08 AM

There is an ingrained corporate culture of left-wing bias that affects the entire organisation. This is combined with a stultifying internal hierarchy and an entrenched unionism that makes it extremely difficult to change anything.

while i admire your steadfast commitment to anti-abc dogma, so far as it relates to the present case your theory is ludicrous. collier's only been there for a couple of years, and it was "entrenched unionism" that got crittenden his job back.

Posted by: adam at September 5, 2003 at 11:18 AM

'There is an ingrained corporate culture of left-wing bias that affects the entire organisation. This is combined with a stultifying internal hierarchy and an entrenched unionism that makes it extremely difficult to change anything. '

Um, all except for the vast numbers of ABC staff who couldn't give a rat's handbag for prevailing politics, and simply do their job. Visitors to this site might be forgiven for assuming that the ABC produces Soviet treatises 24/7!

Yes, at times there is a bias, deal with it! Scientists have promised to supply fully developed Australians with an ability to think for themselves and distinguish points of view by the end of this year. Imagine the future.

Those with an inability to make up their own minds will be drip fed Spleenville until they understand.

Those artichokes on Gardening Australia were definitely left leaning last week.


Posted by: chico o'farrill at September 5, 2003 at 11:39 AM


Posted by: BABAGANOUSH at September 5, 2003 at 11:39 AM

Roast chicken and mashed potato with a green side-salad.

Followed by a yogurt (low fat of course) and some apple juice.

I might even have some choccy later on.

I had a bagel with cream cheese, english mustard and roast beef plus a cup of tea for brekky, it was very yummy.

Posted by: Jake D at September 5, 2003 at 12:33 PM

Big Hawk, `enlist', put on the uniform and so forth. Whatever is at the bottom of this fixation of yours on things martial, it is worth reiterating : fighting wars is why taxpayers are required to stump up capital to pay professioanl soldiers who have volunteered to do just that.

As for the Australian Bravda Commissariat, the less said on that huge fat mendicant sacred cow the better except to say, it should be slaughtered and soon and get it out of real taxpayers p[ockets like so many other sacred cows set up by each tier of government.

Unfortunately, as an aside, warfare is the cloak under which confiscatory government has arisen.

Posted by: d at September 5, 2003 at 12:52 PM

Big Hawk, you do realize that as wars go, this is one of the least bloody in history, don't you?

Probably not.

Posted by: John Nowak at September 5, 2003 at 03:10 PM


Despite Abla's getting all the publicity, Lebanese House in Russell Street (est. 1959) remains the best Lebanese noshery in Melbourne.

Posted by: pooh at September 5, 2003 at 04:00 PM

"one of the least bloody wars in history," eh? what a fucking marvellous achievement.

warfare US style just gets better and better don't it? Such humanitarian wagers of death and destruction. such benevolent deliverers of terrible ordinance. killing with kindness. take your medicine, it's good for you.

I dream of the day we can have a good old bang-up war with no casualties AND still prop up Fortune 500 comanies and their despicable trade in human destruction. get ollie north or poindexter on it right away. should be good for six-months consulting fees at least before it gets shut down.

what's that you say? USD$4bn a month straight into arms trade's pockets? with a little skimming off the top for those that help it through the beltway, off course.

Posted by: Miranda Divide at September 6, 2003 at 01:58 AM