TPA’s Election Analysis: Week Six – The Media

Is TPA the only truly neutral voice in this election? Are we even neutral? We don’t even know.

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The Media

I picked up a Daily Telegraph the other day – don’t judge me, I was flicking to the sport – when a little side bar caught my eye. ‘Greens Latest Lunacy’* was the heading. I chuckled sadly at this brazen lack of objectivity and read the so-called ‘lunacy’. It was about some Greens candidate saying Canadian PM, Justin Trudeau, was his inspiration.

They lambasted him for having the hide to compare himself to a charming and handsome leader whose mother “partied with the Rolling Stones,” happily ignoring the fact he only said Trudeau was an inspiration, not that he was in any way like him. I find inspiration in Lebron James and I’ve got to tell you, I’m nothing like Lebron James. The closest I come to his discipline is typing the word into Pornhub.

Sasssssssssssssssssssssss ...
Sasssssssssssssssssssssss …

But it got me thinking, have Australian journalists just simply given up? “Don’t believe everything that you read in the papers,” was an oft touted line back in the day when people actually read papers, but now it might be more accurate to say “Don’t believe anything that you read in the papers.” I sure as hell don’t. The sport scores are about the only thing I trust and even then I’ll often seek a second source.

We live in a write it now, worry about the facts later era and whatever quality journalism there may be out there is swiftly lost in a fetid ejaculation of quickly thrown together articles ending in a string of ‘Tweets’ by sad loners and B-grade celebrities. Journalists these days don’t even have the self-respect to write their own words! Or maybe I’m being unfair of JStar69 from Penrith. She really nailed it in her 140 character rant. #Lol.

Slovenly, gravy stained, political writers spit bile at whoever their bosses tell them too and television journalists put on their make up and read their lines, and don’t really think too much about anything, apart from who they can get get to go down on them on the weekend.

This guy just looks fucking evil!
This guy just looks fucking evil!

These days I get most of my news from ABC Radio, as they seem to be the most level-headed, but the Lib’s would have us believe they are all wild-eyed lefties. Am I a wild-eyed lefty for listening? I don’t think I am, I’d like to think I’m in the middle, but maybe I’m delusional.

Sure, I don’t want to see the word destroyed and innocent people die, all in the name of a dollar, but should that make me left-wing? It just seems like simple common sense to me. Schoolyard shit, really. Be nice to your neighbours and don’t burn down your own fucking house.

There was an interesting story on the radio the other day (yes, ABC) about conservative Republican voters in America being uneasy on Donald Trump because of his vague position on abortion and small businesses being able to refuse LGBT people service. These are their main concerns? Really?

I can empathise with conservative attitudes to immigration to a certain extent, but when something doesn’t directly affect you in any way whatsoever, why care so much? Just bake the fucking cake for the gay couple and take their money! Stick a pube in it, if they really offend you so much.** That’s what capitalism is all about!

Make a Republican elephant ... with a penis cake pan!
Make a Republican elephant … with a penis cake pan!

But I’m rambling now. This election has sent me into a babbling delirium and I don’t know what’s up and what’s down. Who’s right and who’s left. Where I am or even who I’m going to vote for. All I know is I want this monstrosity to end.

By Alasdair McClintock

Twitter: @AWJP83

* I’m taking this from memory, that may not be 100% verbatim, but it’s more of less accurate.

** I would like to stress I am not advocating putting pubic hairs in anybody’s food, much less members of the LGBT community.

Read Week One – The Leaders here

Read Week Two – The Major Parties here

Read Week Three – The Big Issues here

Read Week Four – “Economics, Dear Watson” here

Read Week Five – The Grind here

Robbie Farah is Bobby Sands

Bobby Sands was a leader from Northern Ireland during a period of great conflict and uncertainty, otherwise known as the Troubles.

Robbie Farah is a leader from the Wests Tigers during a period of great conflict and uncertainty, otherwise known as Troubling Times in Tigertown.

Many people will think that likening Farah, a rugby league hooker from Leichhardt with Sands, one of the greatest symbols of political martyrdom and bravery of the past century, is a bit of a stretch. It may even be called inappropriate, but hear me out.

Both men fought/are fighting noble causes, with Sands sacrificing his life in pursuit of Irish republicanism, and Farah trying to carry his young Tigers side into the NRL finals for the first time since 2011.

Both men are local heroes. Sands achieved cult-like status for his election to British Parliament, hungerstrike and subsequent death which drew international attention to the sectarian conflict in Northern Ireland. On the other hand, Farah is a homegrown Tiger junior turned club captain, who helped win the club their first premiership in 2005 and has been the team’s most consistent player for the best part of a decade.

"I know TPA is famous for its obscure analogies, but surely comparing rugby league to a violent conflict which killed thousands is inappropriate?"
“I know TPA is famous for its obscure analogies, but surely comparing rugby league to a violent conflict which killed thousands is inappropriate?”

The similarities may appear trite on first glance, but when you consider the vilification both figures have received in the media, the experiences of Farah and Sands aren’t too dissimilar.

For the past few weeks Robbie Farah has been persecuted in the media in a campaign driven by dark, nefarious forces. He has been used as the fall guy, accused of being the driving force behind a plan to axe the coach or the CEO, or both. Despite consistent denials, Farah is continually blamed by the media for causing instability within the club – while any cursory glance at the facts will show he has done very little to (intentionally) promote disharmony. Rather, he is being used as a pawn in a game being played by people higher up the food chain (note: possibly the rugby league illuminati) to pursue some darker, sinister motive.

Sands faced similar persecution by the British media. He was labelled a criminal and a terrorist and his actions were condemned by Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, the British/Protestant political class and Fleet Street papers. His hunger strike was reported with astonishment and derision, and his death was celebrated. The Daily Mail accused him of “moral fraud”, the Mirror said “it was a pathetic end for a man” and the Express claimed “Sands will no victory in the grave… the Shadow of Bobby Sands will pass”.

Could this one day be Robbie Farah?
Could this one day be Robbie Farah?

Of course, the papers were wrong. Sands’ shadow did not pass. In anything, his legend grew and his cause was given even greater international attention following his death. Indeed, to this day, Bobby Sands’ face can been seen plastered on murals across Northern Ireland.

In the case of Robbie Farah, the papers are wrong again. He is not a villain. He is a hero that has been reported in the wrong light. And like Bobbie Sands, Robbie Farah’s actions will be vindicated with the passing of time. And when he finally gets his boyhood team to the summit of the NRL top-eight, perhaps one day his face will be found painted on walls across Balmain, Annandale and Rozelle.

By Ben Shine