Attila the Pun
Thursday, March 17, 2005
Talking crap, by Crikey

The Crikey community is hopping into Paddy McGuiness hopping into Alan Ramsey, with predictable results:

While many may call for Ramsey's head, his loss will be ours also. Ramsey fills a niche that needs filling. I like the fact that he quotes liberally from international sources. It helps to show up what a mindless little fish bowl most of our journalists live in. The fact that the newspaper lets him get away with it is their problem. I would never stop buying the SMH because of Ramsey, while at the same time I refuse to buy Thursday's publication due to the rubbish on the op-ed pages that day (I refuse to say her name). Tuesday looks likely to be the next day to go.

So you hate the mindless fishbowl that Australian journalists live in, but you will refuse to buy an entire paper because you disagree with one op-ed columnist?

In any case, the thrust of Ramsey's column (and Moyers remarks) is still true.

Well Moyer's remarks *were* Ramsey's column, and although it contained completely falsified remarks, we are supposed to be scared by the "thrust" of the column? Is that like the "fake but accurate" National Guard documents?

Failure to check sources is inexcusable, whether you're Alan Ramsey, Janet Albrechtsen, or whoever, and misquotes are relatively easy to check these days. Still, we need people prepared to stick their necks out in the interests of freedom of expression and free debate, and if they trip up, so be it.

Quoting entire slabs of other people's articles now counts as "sticking your neck out"? In that case, us bloggers must be a courageous lot...

The Moyers article raises serious issues about the role of religion in a secular state, and it's a pity that Ramsey did not even flag an Australian connection by mentioning Hillsong, Family First, or Cardinal Abbott's anti-abortion crusade.

Yes, it is a pity that Ramsey didn't add a local element, or add anything at all for that matter. This was one of McGuiness' criticisms.

Consider the facts: McGuinness was either pushed, or read the writing on the wall and jumped, from the SMH and Age last year. He subsequently indulged himself in a series of rants to Crikey about Fairfax's falling standards, incompetence etc. Gee, that's original - bagging the organisation that just sacked you. It had to be their fault, not his.

The Paddy piece in the Oz on Alan Ramsey contained what at first appears a gratuitous brown-nose of the appalling Tim Blair, but really on closer inspection is a job application for the Bulletin.

This guy doesn't even make an attempt at justifying Ramsey's appalling column, just attacks McGuiness. But the next is hilarious:

I have watched with growing concern as voices not in tune with the Government are being sidelined incrementally both in SMH and the ABC. Margo Kingston is hidden on-line, David Marr does not have a regular spot and now the prospect of Alan Ramsey being replaced by Michael Duffy (isn't he the one that hosts 'Counterpoint ' on Radio National?) reduces the spectrum of views expressed. On the ABC, Dr Michael McKinley is now rarely heard since he spoke out against the Iraq war.

Its the crushing of dissent I tells ya! Margo hosting an online discussion forum (I am being kind)whilst still managing to write an anti-Howard book and Marr not getting a "regular spot" after finishing up hosting a weekly television program are signs of anti-Government voices being "sidelined" Cue mass hysteria:

The pendulum is swinging too far to the right....and those who favour this should be aware of the danger of Fascism as it's extremity.

In case you missed it - Alan Ramsey quoting somebody misquoting somebody + PP McGuiness calling for his sacking + David Marr not getting a regular gig = Fascism.

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