The usual susppects - another suspecft appointment to the ABC Board : LUSENET : Friends of the ABC : One Thread

The following media release issued 2 May PO Box 4285 University of Melbourne, 3052

MEDIA RELEASE 2 May 2003 – for immediate release Attention: Chief of Staff The usual suspects

Following the appointment of Dr Ron Brunton to the board of the ABC, Friends of the ABC have called on the government to reform the process by which appointments are made to the ABC board.

Dr Brunton, a Queensland based anthropologist, is a former Director of the Indigenous Affairs Unit of the Institute of Public Affairs. The Institute of Public Affairs, which is commonly described as a right wing think tank, has been a fierce critic of the ABC. The Shadow Minsiter for Communications, Lindsay Tanner, described Dr Brunton as an “ideological zealot” and said that his appointment to the ABC was a disgrace.

Commenting on the appointment Friends of the ABC spokesperson Darce Cassidy said:

“ I think it is fair to describe Dr Brunton as an ideological zealot. This in itself does not disqualify him from the ABC board. There is a legitimate place for zealots in public life. Our problem is with the political balance on the ABC board, and with the appointment process.

“In selecting commentators to appear on its programs, the ABC is, quite properly, required to provide a balance of opinion. But in selecting members of the ABC board the government appoints the usual suspects time after time. Dr Brunton replaces well known Liberal identity Michael Kroger. He joins conservative economist Professor Judith Sloan, Chairman of the Stock Exchange Maurice Newman, former Liberal politician Ross McLean and John Howard’s friend Donald McDonald on the board.”

“We have nothing against Dr Brunton as such, and wish him well. We are concerned that the ABC board fails the balance test. Any ABC producer who chose the government appointed members of the ABC board as the panel for a current affairs discussion would be quickly found guilty of bias”

“Not only does the government appoint the usual suspects, but the process itself is also suspect. It happens secretly, and without any apparent relationship to the qualifications required to run a half billion dollar a year organisation. It is time that the government followed the example of the Conservative government in the UK an implemented an open, transparent and non-partisan method of finding qualified people to run our national broadcaster.”

Further information or comment: Darce Cassidy , phone 03 9486 9549 (bh) 03 9349 4280 (ah) mobile 0412 685 178 email

-- Anonymous, May 02, 2003


The ABC board fails the balance test??? The ABC fails the balance test, mate. The ABC is nothing but a taxpayer funded pack of Howard haters! The sooner it is forced to support itself instead of bludging off the taxpayer, the better. SBS can do it. What's so special about the AB bloody C?

-- Anonymous, May 23, 2003

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