Thursday, 19 January 2012

The Daily Speculator

Well, it appears that our media have abandoned all pretences of journalism, and entered instead into the divination game. For the past week, we have had speculation, assertion and equivocation over this fairly innocent comment from the PM
I've had some discussions with Andrew Wilkie, we will have some more discussions in the future and it's not my intention to engage in running commentary in any way while those discussions are happening.
Somehow, the author of the article interpreted this to mean
JULIA Gillard has backed away from her promise to introduce a mandatory pre-commitment scheme for poker machines.
Sadly, he was not alone.

A fairly complete list of the some of the ridiculous speculations masquerading as news can be found here.

Wilkie finally got to front the cameras to explain exactly where they were at. Apparently, the deal was still on, although not concluded, and negotiations were advancing. Of course, this meant that the headlines the next morning could reflect this?

Or not
There is no pokies deal, Wilkie says
 Now, while the story itself is accurate enough it's claim that no deal has been formalised, considering that for an entire week the the press has been running the line that the Government has back-flipped on the deal with Wilkie, even though Wilkie denies this, to run a headline declaring 'no deal' is truly deceptive.

Unfortunately, for Gillard, there really is a no win for her in this that I can see.

If the PM were to break the deal with Wilkie, then she deserves all of the contempt she gets.

If the PM strikes a compromise that Wilkie agrees to, it will obviously still be portrayed as a betrayal of trust, even should Wilkie agree to it in hte hopes of actually passing the legislation.

If the PM were to come out with exactly the same deal as put forward after the election, it will obviously be thanks to media pressure, and, the PM basically buying the vote of Wilkie.

In another interesting piece of news, it appears that the figures put forward by the clubs for the cost of introducing this reform may well have been overblown, by a factor of about 10. Apparently, the clubs don't see a little quibble over some dollars as a real issue. (couldn't find the link to their statement, but will update once I do). In other words, it appears that, for them, lying (from them at least) is not really a problem that should hinder 'debate'

UPDATED 20 Jan 2012
"We can quibble over whether it's going to be $3 billion, a little bit more or little bit less," Clubs Australia President Anthony Ball told ABC Radio.
Yes, why 'quibble' over rubbery figures It's not like it's real money anyway, unlike the savings of those getting fleeced by these clubs.


  1. The figures put forward by the clubs may have been a tiny bit exaggerated? Surely you jest! I mean, they wouldn't have made a slight calculations error, not the clubs!!! *Eyes rolling*

    1. Just updated with a link to the lame excuse the clubs used to explain this disparity. Apparently, it is 'quibbling' ;)

  2. Right. I suppose you still think the media were making up all the stuff about Gillard walking away from her agreement.

    Perhaps you need to update your post again. A few days of reality has made it irreverent.

    1. The fact that, for once, idle speculation, presented as fact, turned out to be correct, doesn't change the fact that the media spent a week speculating, rather than reporting.

      And now, that the PM is shown to have lied to another politician, is huge news, yet the fact that the campaign by the clubs is exposed as a lie to the populace, is not really that interesting to them.

      It truly confirms where the media's interest lies, and it certainly doesn't appear to be with the populace.

  3. “idle speculation”

    Now that’s funny. Clearly that is exactly what it wasn’t.

    The press correctly informed the public of political developments, and ones that reflect on the integrity of this government. They reported this in advance of a government press release, which would have simply put their spin on the breach of agreement.

    It’s just more dishonesty, to compound its track record of dishonesty.

  4. The press had declared this 'idle speculation' as fact a week before it became fact yomm. They had also declared that Wilkie had walked away and shown no spine. In that they were quite obviously wrong.

    They were a thousand monkeys with a thousand typewriters. They finally got one right, and you think this kind of 'journalism' is validated. Not for the amount of times they have got it wrong, no. They should stick to actual journalism, not soothsaying.

  5. Yeah, right. We have-
    • Gillard’s staff( maybe even Gillard herself?) playing dishonest politics.
    • The Leader of the HOR plagiarising a speech from a romantic comedy
    • Craig Thomson having a case to answer about the (dishonest) use of union members funds, despite all the denial from barrackers.
    • Yet more breaking of promises, but this time it was the very promise that delivered Gillard into the Lodge,

    But the best you can come up with it “the press was right just this once and they shouldn’t be talking so much about all that other stuff”.

    You’ve lost your sharpness, spending too much time with slothful thinkers.

    1. What in the hell does any of that have to with the post yomm. Or is it just another excuse to put out dot points?

    2. playing dishonest politics.

      Are you able to highlight the "dishonest politics" you claim is occurring?

      Or are you just making shit up again?

  6. Well of course. You and other barrackers disparaged/dismissed each of the above, usually as “baseless speculation”.

    If fact on each of those stories, the press reported correctly, and if was in the public interest that they did.

    Barrackers just get all bitter, because history usually proves their “baseless speculation” whinging as being… baseless whinging.