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media games …

The Beagle Editor, Your readers might be interested in our latest media release media games …

Virtue Signalling is all the go this week, with the Bega District News (BDN) publishing a front page story featuring local Labor federal member, Dr Mike Kelly, championing the cause of journalistic freedom.

Talking to the recent Federal Police raids on the homes & workplaces of journalists, Dr Kelly is reported as saying that his aim “is to ensure security measures are balanced with the protection of civil liberties”, going on to assert that “Labor supports freedom of the press – it is at the core of our democratic society”, before attacking the government by claiming that “In contrast, the government has failed to demonstrate the leadership Australians expect and stand up for the freedom of the press.”

While the Bega Valley Shire Residents & Ratepayers Association (BVSRRA) endorses Dr Kelly’s call for civil liberties to be protected, it also thinks that it is important to point out that the raids carried-out by the Federal Police were in accordance with current laws & that when it comes to those laws, the Labor Party & the LNP have consistently acted in unison in supporting their introduction.

In the circumstances, the BVSRRA believes that Dr Kelly is “virtue-signalling” the Labor Party’s position on the issue, while also noting that neither he or his party have had anything to say about the government's persecution of Bernard Collaery & whistle-blower "Witness K" for exposing the Australian Government’s criminal behaviour towards Timor Leste: foul deeds supported by both the Labor Party& the LNP.

Not content to leave the virtue signalling to Dr Kelly, the BDN offered yet another self-serving editorial on the same day, taking exception to last week’s criticism of ABC Radio South East by then Acting Premier John Barilaro (while the ABC itself said nothing) & then using it as a ruse to give itself "a leg-up" by claiming adherence to journalistic standards evidenced by others.

Following the kerfuffle between Mr Barilaro & ABC Radio South East, the BVSRRA joined the criticism of Mr Barilaro, but it also argued that the ABC is responsible for setting & maintaining its broadcasting standards & that it is not reasonable for it to adopt a broadcast format akin to a kiddies program one day & then expect to be regarded as a meritorious provider of serious journalistic content the next.

The BVSRRA contends that the same principle should apply to the BDN & other journalistic outlets & that as long as they remain determined to put the interests of government, including council & local politicians, ahead of the public interest, they are no more deserving of accolades for upholding the highest journalistic standards than is ABC Radio South East.

The BVSRRA believes that regional media (at least the print media & ABC Radio South East) has for far too long indulged the petty political whims of local politicians, who have been given free rein to bleat their mantras on whatever they like without any genuine scrutiny. In allowing them to do so, regional media has disrespected its audiences: the local community.

The BVSRRA believes that it is never too late to change the way things are, but any change is entirely in the hands of that regional media itself.

John Richardson

Secretary/Treasurer

Bega Valley Shire Residents & Ratepayers Association


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