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Archive for June, 2012|Monthly archive page

I don’t recognise the Australian Labor Party any more

In politics on June 28, 2012 at 2:16 am

This asylum-seeker issue is doing my head in.

Let the boats come.

Any suggestion that we are being ‘over-run’ or ‘flooded’ with refugees is rank fear-mongering.

We have the room, we have just about the strongest economy in the world right now, we have the ability to give these poor bastards a better life.

Make sure they get piloted to safe harbour, not the fucking rocks off the arse-end of Christmas Island. Build a decent processing centre and holding facility on Australian soil, damn it.

Act like the Lucky Country we are. Be compassionate, be visionary about what these people could contribute to our nation. Be humanitarian.

For fuck’s sake, when did the Australian Labor Party become a pack of centrist, focus group driven hard hearts? When did the ALP stop standing up for the downtrodden and the huddled fucking masses?

Tony Abbott is a fear-mongering fascist who will be the next Prime Minister if the ALP doesn’t start standing up for the values that made it the true liberal heart of Australians.

Both major parties are dismissing the Greens’ policy on this issue as ‘naive’. The fuck?

It’s not naive, it’s just that nobody has yet had the balls and the moral centre to do it.

Could you imagine Gough or Hawkie or even PK trying to treat boat people the way Gillard et al are? Even Malcolm Fraser is more compassionate on this issue than the leftiest of the so-called left of the ALP.

I just don’t get where the party is going any more. Not on this. Not on same-sex marriage, not on many other things.

Sad times.

Is there anything more blissy than a dozy kitten?

In about me, animals, great photos on June 28, 2012 at 1:11 am

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So, today I quit my job

In about me, media on June 28, 2012 at 12:56 am

After almost 25 years as a journalist, and almost 24 years of them with the Gold Coast Bulletin, today I threw in the towel.

I know I could have asked for redeployment to Brisbane, Sydney or Melbourne, but in the end there was only one question that was relevant … do I want to work for News Limited any more?

And the answer to that question, quite simply, is no.

Do I want to be a journalist any more? Probably not, no.

It’s still not wise to go into the reasons why the answer to the first is no. But today I opted for redundancy. I will finish up on or about July 20.

So that’s that. I walk away with a tidy package, of which I have earned every fucking cent, frankly.

Perhaps when the cheque is safely cashed I’ll talk more freely about it. And perhaps a confidentiality agreement will be part of the conditions of walking away. I don’t know yet.

The last couple of days have been an interesting exercise in finding out just who my friends are.

Very, very few of my colleagues in the newsroom have even met my eye, let alone said anything about the situation.

It took until the subs down in News Central heard about it tonight for me to get any acknowledgement. These are the old heads, the wise ones I was lucky to be in charge of back in my chief sub days. They were the ones who came with the hug, and the WTFs and the ‘fuck mate, let’s go have a drink’.

I doubt my younger, more territorial colleagues will even notice my departure.

That’s life in journalism.

It’s also a great reason to walk away.

A little something to lighten the mood

In great photos on June 27, 2012 at 12:20 am

Because if the combination of women’s legs and the theatre can’t cheer you up, nothing can.

NSFW … Saucy.

So much to say, so little I can say

In about me, Gold Coast, media on June 27, 2012 at 12:11 am

So … arseclown of a day.

Obviously, I’m restricted in what I can say. Not because I’ve been told to shut up. But because it’s only common sense that I protect my own interests and the interests of the people I supervise.

I don’t think it’s any great secret that today News Limited announced they would be cutting 70 jobs across its digital operations nationwide.

I’m the online editor of goldcoast.com.au, the news site of the Gold Coast Bulletin.

Our team has five members, although only four are active right now as we have one on maternity leave.

Today at 12pm we were told that our team will be reduced to a 2-person team.

I’ll be all right. I have 24 years’ behind me and if I choose redundancy, or have it forced upon me, I’ll walk away with enough money to give me time to find something else.

The two people I directly supervise are not as lucky and I feel awful for them. They have to reapply for their jobs and with so many jobs cut across the country, who knows what that means for them in terms of the competition.

I would hope that they have first dibs on retaining their places.

As for me … *shrugs* … I guess we’ll see. Maybe they’ll redeploy me in another city. But realistically with so many people now competing for so few jobs, I have to face the fact that my time with News Ltd, and perhaps my time as a journalist is coming to an end.

I’m not entirely fazed by that. I’ve been thinking about it for a while. But today was harsh reality.

I can’t comment right now on what I think of the strategy to cut online jobs in an age where clearly online is the future of news. I’m not sure if I’ll ever be able to comment on it in a public forum like this.

If you know me, it’s likely you know what I think, anyway.

Meanwhile, a lot of people out there are taking great delight in News Limited journalists losing their jobs. I would hope people will remember that the journalists are not the corporation. That we’re human beings who’ve been trying to do our jobs the best we can.

Less journalists is not a good thing for our country. That’s all I can say right now.

If you’re inclined to wish me and my colleagues well, thank you. If you’re inclined to think we had it coming … well, fuck you.

No, no … don’t thank me

In great photos on June 17, 2012 at 1:57 pm

NSFW … Saucy.

Weak, Mr Premier, very very weak

In gay rights on June 17, 2012 at 1:49 pm

Here’s what I had to say at goldcoast.com.au this week after Campbell Newman’s same-sex marriage arseclownery:

CAMPBELL Newman has sacrificed the rights of part of his constituency for blatant pandering to the groups who think that they’ve bought his support.

The Premier yesterday decided that rather than take a stand either way on same-sex civil unions, he would vacillate like a jellyfish in a wind tunnel and attempt a `sensible’ compromise.

Under the Newman Government, same-sex couples will be able to register as couples, but any ceremony they have will go unrecognised.

This isn’t `sensible compromise’. It’s just weak, offensive and discriminatory.

Mr Newman said civil unions will `no longer emulate marriage … demonstrating a lot of good faith to the Christian churches who have lobbied us’.

The implication being that gays and lesbians can only ever pretend to be married, regardless of legal recognition.

As for `the Christian churches who have lobbied us’, Mr Newman, there you are being downright disingenous.

Churches haven’t lobbied you on this issue. Hard-right splinter groups and vested interests — fringe groups like the Australian Christian Lobby — have lobbied you.

You just don’t have the nouse or the courage to acknowledge that this is not the view of all Christians.

There are a great many faithful Christians who support the legalisation of same-sex marriage, and do so from a sound theological grounding.

I am terrible at arguing for same-sex marriage mainly because it seems to me to be a simple discussion.

Am I a human, like you, Mr Newman? If the answer is yes, then I am entitled to the same rights as you, my fellow human.

Jellyfish, on the other hand …

Goldcoast.com.au

A tiny little squee

In theatre on June 17, 2012 at 1:40 pm

In 18 sleeps, a friend and I will be sitting in the fifth row on opening night of the Melbourne Theatre Company’s production of Queen Lear, starring Robyn Nevin.

I KNOW!

For a start, Lear is just about my favourite Shakespeare … the Scottish play notwithstanding. Not just from the point of view of the drama, but also from a staging perspective. Eyeballs!! Come on, it doesn’t get any better than that.

And Nevin. NEVIN!

I’ve been lucky enough to see Maggie Smith (twice), Patrick Stewart, Felicity Kendall, Penelope Keith, and Kiri Te Kanawa on stage. All heroes of mine.

Now I get to see Robyn Nevin. Stoked. Big-time stoked.

You’re welcome

In great photos on June 5, 2012 at 11:26 pm

More, but way more not safe for work, here.

Back at work

In about me on June 5, 2012 at 11:20 pm

And I survived day one. Not only that but a friend actually noted that I was unnaturally chirpy about it all.

That won’t last, of course. I suspect probably about mid-afternoon tomorrow, or at best Thursday, I’ll suddenly realise that actually I was never on holiday at all. Just a product of a delusional mind.

Given the circumstances of my departure it was an interesting return.

One person admitted that they hadn’t been sure I’d be back. And that was interesting because that person wasn’t involved in any way, or even in the office for any of it. So clearly there was been some talking out of school.

But I expected that. There are too many personalities in that office who have no respect for privacy or even good management practices to have kept that between the three people in the editor’s office that night.

So … I am the newsroom nutcase. But, you know what, better that than the sucker working 50 hours a week for nothing but my own somewhat overblown work ethic.

So … good day.

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