- TALKBACK RADIO EDITORIAL ADVERTISING
John Laws is the king of Australian talkback radio. Any person tuning to radio 2UE weekday mornings will hear paid advertising read by John, and spirited banter about just about any topic between John and his audience.
Up until the middle of last week, I had thought that the crushing certainties of John's positions derived from rational application of logic, but events in the last week have made me realize that it was a dollar driven rationality. It was revealed that that one client paid $1,200,000 for a positive "editorial" bias.
It will be sad for the public if this incident destroys John Laws. The price will be worth it if we begin to scrutinize more closely the sources of public information & comment. Legislators please note a legislated solution is not called for. A possible solution would be if radio talkback shows voluntarily recited a message at least once hourly listing their advertisers and stating whether any fee is paid for editorial comment. Stations that did not recite such a list would attract disparaging comment from other sections of the media.
The public's response is a reflection of information dynamics that result from the E-era. A decade past the penetration of such scandal would have been sluggish, resulting in attenuation of the impact to below critical mass before the public was advised.
The calculated attack on John Laws by that other & less important John (Prime Minister of Australia) was as politically transparent as his earlier announcements on the USA & Japanese Olympic marching bands.
Can Australians believably
John Howard does not belong to us? I suppose not. Everyone
I know believes that all Americans are much like President Willie, so I
suppose people around the world will think Australians are just like
The Republic referendum is due in a few months. An elected president will not be an option (courtesy of Howard via Turnbull). Consequently Australian people are enormously bored.
The signs are that the Australian electorate is in a supersaturated mood, a mood ripe for a demagogue. This situation has been brought about by the blatant legislative manipulation of politicians.
SPIN is patiently waiting for disclosure of the evidence of Serbian atrocities that justified Willie, Tony & Maddie's murder of hundreds of Yugoslav nationals. So far all we see mass graves containing KLA fighters buried with alleged non-KLA Albanians. (Who decided that they weren't KLA? Perhaps someone decided because they were twelve years old that they couldn't have been KLA?)
Spin suggests to Tony that perhaps something similar to the Yugoslav method could be applied to the recalcitrant Irish? And perhaps Willie & Maddie should apply the Yugoslav method to Indonesia over Timor or to China (if the Formosa situation develops.)
The Timor situation approaches a nexus. Timor was never just about nationalism. It was always about oil. The original takeover is a blot on the humanitarian record of the ALP and Gough Whitlam, without whose permission the absorption could not have happened. John Howard must route the clique in foreign affairs that persists in providing advice that supports the military in Indonesian politics.
Support for the principal of military guidance of transitional Dictatorship/Republics is an example of the worst element of 1960's political philosophy.
This page mounted 18 July 1999.