Category Archives: Arts and Media

Homily to Susan Ryan

As we gather here in the Lady Chapel at Newman College, people are gathered in socially distant numbers at St Mary’s Cathedral in Sydney for the state funeral of Susan Maree Ryan.

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Shaoquett Moselmane MLC returns to Parliament despite the media. (AMUST Oct 23, 2020)

Mr Shaoquett Moselmane MLC returned to the NSW Parliament on Thursday 22 October 2020 following months of controversy after the Parliamentary Privileges Committee exonerated him and cleared the way for his dignified return to the House.

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Tamed estate: ‘no holes in Gladys’ story’ … give or take 152 moments of amnesia

The Premier then went on 2GB to discuss her relationship with shock jock Kyle Sandilands. Not a sentence I thought I would ever write. This one doesn’t really require further elaboration.

Posted in Media, Politics, Tamed Estate | 2 Comments

Megaphone Madness: how reckless media impeded Victoria’s Covid-19 recovery

The media we consume influences our compliance with Covid-19 recommendations. Poor media coverage in Victoria is impeding the state’s recovery.

Posted in Media, Politics | 4 Comments

James Murdoch, Rebellious Scion (NYTimes Oct 10, 2020)

Increasingly uncomfortable with News Corp’s politics and profit motives, Rupert’s younger son chose chickens and sheep over Fox, and insists he doesn’t watch ‘Succession.’

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Remembering Harold Evans (AIIA Oct 9, 2020)

Harold Evans had an indefatigable role in encouraging and expanding coverage of international affairs in the publications he edited and in the books he published. He also had great enthusiasm for hiring and fostering well-trained Australian journalists.

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Julian Assange and failure of mainstream media

On 18 September, a little over a year since Amal Clooney was appointed as the UK’s special envoy for media freedom, she resigned. Among Clooney’s barrister colleagues are Geoffrey Robertson, Jennifer Robinson, and Gareth Pierce, all of whom, at their … Continue reading

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Australian media in the Asian century

Pompeo and circumstance Our foreign minister, Marise Payne, flew off to Tokyo for a rare meeting of the “Quad” on Tuesday with counterparts including the US secretary of state, Mike Pompeo.

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Media failure again on alleged chemical weapons attacks in Syria

Two new reports from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons challenge claims that chemical weapons were used in two alleged attacks in Syria.

Posted in Defence/Security, Media, Politics | 10 Comments

The Liberals Quietly Removed That Budget Surplus Mug From Its Store & We Can All Sip The Tea (Pedestrian March 10, 2020)

The Liberal Party has quietly removed a mug promoting a return to federal budget surplus from its official merchandise range, amid mounting speculation the Federal Government won’t put the 2019-2020 budget “Back In Black” after all.

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The numbers game: how Morrison is playing journalism off a break (Crikey Oct 5, 2020)

All politicians know that numbers create news. It’s simple maths: the bigger the number, the greater the news. And Scott Morrison knows this better than most. He knows how to use numbers as signs of action for the media — … Continue reading

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Susan Ryan: a daughter of St Brigid

Long after Susan’s passing, Australians, and Irish-Australians in particular, will continue to be enriched by the legacy that this daughter of St Brigid has left us.’

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Susan Ryan: a forgiving politician

It is difficult to exaggerate the significance of the movements, legislation and offices shaped or led by the late Susan Maree Ryan (Oct 10, 1942 – September 27, 2020).

Posted in Politics, Top 5, Tributes | 3 Comments

Australian media in the Asian Century

The struggles and contradictions in media understanding of China.

Posted in China, Media, Politics | 5 Comments

The Conundrum of the London Kangaroos

Seven years ago the UK government overruled the purchase for $10,000,000 by the Australian government of two oil paintings of a dingo and a kangaroo painted in London by George Stubbs from stuffed pelts brought back from the coast of … Continue reading

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Assange: Still waiting… for your right to know

We’re all still waiting … for your right to know. The right of the public in our democracies to know what’s really going on is being tested at this very moment at the Old Bailey in Merry England.

Posted in Media | Tagged | 3 Comments

Review: Cruelty or Humanity by Stuart Rees

Cruelty or Humanity  by Em.Prof. Stuart Rees, is essential reading in our present tumult and bedlam of human cruelty.

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Feeding the Chooks: Scott Morrison’s marketing triumph over mainstream media complete

Scott Morrison has perfected the art of media manipulation by briefing a select club of Canberra correspondents together, rather than leaking to individual media outlets. Callum Foote and Michael West report on the marketing genius of the Prime Minister and … Continue reading

Posted in Media, Politics, Top 5 | 8 Comments

Six Ways Sacked Hacks Can Keep Keyboarding

If airline pilots grounded by Covid-19 can retrain as header drivers to reap this year’s harvest, sacked political journalists can keep supplying readers’ needs through a little retraining.

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P&I ISSUES in Stuart Rees’ Cruelty or Humanity , Bristol: Policy Press  2020

Regarded by international jurist Richard Falk as ‘A road map for humanity’ and by Noam Chomsky as ‘a wonderful guide to the challenges we face’, Stuart Rees’ ‘Cruelty or Humanity‘ identifies world-wide threats to freedom and democracy and displays the humanitarian … Continue reading

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What can possibly be done with our political and policy malaise.Part 1.

Two new books are available or soon will be; (“How to Win an Election” by Chris Wallace and “What is to be Done?” by Barry Jones). Both focus on the state of the nation and the state of the ALP.

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Les Miserables – Killing the ABC in a time of national emergency

Empty chairs at empty tables … where my friends will sing no more. (Les Miserables – the musical). The departure of many of the ABC’s most experienced journalists, producers and presenters has immiserated the public broadcaster. 

Posted in Media, Politics | Tagged | 3 Comments

Local lad’s strife pips looming crisis

It’s one of journalism’s nastier cynicisms: When judging news values 100 distant deaths equals ten closer to home and one in the suburb where the paper circulates.  If public contempt for the media is to be cured then The West Australian … Continue reading

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Greg Sheridan’s feverish cherry picking

What has Greg Sheridan of The Australian been smoking or taking, or is it just common or garden cherry picking?

Posted in Arts and Media, Politics | 7 Comments

Night and Day (NYBooks Aug 26, 2020)

But a broken nation is not a macrocosm of a broken family. It cannot be healed by love and understanding alone, by religious faith and “small acts of kindness.”

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Australia’s needs to stand up for the arts

Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s Coalition Government has been widely criticised for its failure to support the arts in the COVID-19 crisis. The PM has responded with a handful of PR announcements. But what’s needed is a complete change of policy … Continue reading

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D.H.Lawrence’s Australian Climacteric

The Obscene Publications Act was promulgated in England and Wales on August 29, 1959. It paved the way for the Lady Chatterley’s Lover trial in October 1960 that cleared Penguin Books of publishing an obscene article without literary merit even … Continue reading

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An apology

My regrets that the Pearls and Irritations site was down for an extended period yesterday. It is now up and running again with all articles available.  Regards   John Menadue

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Australian Media in the Asian Century

Aided by the media frenzy,the Government  blitz on China continues and Tony Abbott takes a job serving Boris Johnson.

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ABC News should chase ratings – but differently

It is not logical to have high production values and excellent journalism if nobody is watching. ABC News needs to serve a majority Australian audience.

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