If you listen to, watch or read material produced by the ABC, you will encounter people you disagree with, arguments you will reject and opinions that enrage.
That’s Mark Scott – ABC managing director – describing the 100% taxpayer funded organisation he heads up. That’s fine – but all the time?
Then there is this:
Our editorial policies are not about pulling out a stopwatch or doing a head count of guests.
No doubt. Yet this tells me that the ABC deliberately chooses not to ensure balance in time devoted to issues or equal numbers of guests with differing perspectives. It makes no attempt to even measure balance.
As Doug Cameron remarked at a recent Senate estimates hearing, Insiders panels all looked well to the Right to him.
I’m just not convinced that the opinion of one left-wing Senator is enough for the ABC to claim it has discharged its obligations under the Charter.
Wait there is more:
The appearance of Peter Reith as a guest or someone who works with the Institute of Public Affairs unleashes a new flurry of criticism and abuse.
While I am convinced that Peter Reith – a private citizen – and Chris Berg, James Paterson and Tim Wilson from the IPA are a match for many, many hundreds of tax-payer funded bolshies and luvvies from the ABC I remain unconvinced that the efforts of these fine individuals are enough for the ABC to claim it has discharged its obligations under the Charter.
As an aside, the federal government allocated one thousand, one hundred and eighty-eight million dollars to the ABC in the last budget. The IPA gets by on about two million – yet Scott would have us believe that the IPA is the counter-balance to the ABC’s unrelenting left bias.
There is, however, a very simple test of the ABCs commitment to a plurality of views. Where is Glenn Milne? Why was he dropped from Insiders? The answer is clear, of course. A wholly owned government funded agency dropped a critic of a left-wing government from its leading political show. Not that they have ever dropped any left-wing critics of the Howard government.