Saturday, November 08, 2003

Don't lump me with Paul Sheehan

Writing a predictably shallow'n'callow review of Paul Sheehan's new book in today's SMH, Max Suich is showing distinct signs of being next week's "Australian Story" guest, a la the dementia-struck Hazel Hawke:

Like many other journalists of his and younger generations, Sheehan is pessimistic about the future of the quality press - it has, he says, lost the battle with the spin doctors, the websites and the management cost squeezes. As mass information becomes cheaper, the relative cost of quality becomes higher. When an older generation looks at the resources available for colour supplements and advertising features, the opportunity to assign reporters to tell the reader what's going on rather than what they ought to think still seems available.

I don't know which is worse - the self-proclaimed "older generation" (which I would have thought included Sheehan, b ~ 1950, under any test) lumping anyone pre-Alzheimers into the same "You young' uns don't realise how good you've got it" basket, or Suich's laughable inference that colour supplements (admittedly an innovation since his heyday) have paved the way for more serious investigative journalism.

Time for your kero bath, Max Suich.

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