Wednesday, 25 July 2007

You Better Pawn It, Babe.

'The Age' newspaper Editorial Board respond to public criticism.

(This is my feeble and ineffective response to Suzanne Carbone, a journalist colleague of Catherine Deveny. I wrote to ‘The Age’ and Carbone about a delightful column Cathy wrote on what a load of jerks private school people are and how apparently she’s not a jerk. Right. Cathy is more of a classic left urban creep. Sadly, Suzanne felt that any criticism especially of an Age er, journalist, is just not allowed. Carbone dismissed my scribblings by quoting my own last lines back to me. How Devenishly clever! She added impishly that I motivated her. To learn to write or to masturbate she didn't say)

Dear Suzanne:

Err, gee, thanks for the ad hominem only 'analysis'. Your thoughts went as deep as using my analysis! Right on!, and I carelessly said so many Age journalists have nothing to say. You took the best option and said what I have to say. And to keep up the standard, you added my name. Bravo.

Dear Suze, may I call you that? What I stated was not hateful or frivolous at all, more embarrassed and damn it, a pretty good and empirical analysis of an awful column. And quite frankly, if you can’t tell the difference as a er, journalist, “you better check your diamond ring, you better pawn it, babe”. Thank you, Bobby. What exactly did I say that is not true? That is your job.

It’s the height of being frivolous to dismiss all private schools, every student in them and presumably the teachers as some kind of disease, victim or a mental problem. It is hateful to say the things Deveny did throughout her entirely predictable and weaselly column.

I don’t hate people such as this. I don’t need to hate the creatively and intellectually impotent and I’d have to hate a lot of folks as there is a "mountain everyday" of that kind of junk view. You can always send me something courageous, witty, funny, interesting, alive, worthwhile and memorable that you and young Cathy have written, and written well...

Um, so your paradigm can't hold any criticism no matter how obviously humorous? I thought your job was communication; the people and all that. Guess not. I guess just as long as they don’t actually have any real chance to say anything at all in any effective way, eh? In reply to your new found motivation I find well positioned and comfortable er, journalists entirely unmotivated except for turning out more of the same.

Unlike average people those with ample and easy access to the media such as said er, journalists; politicians; celebrities; overgrown undergraduates; highly qualified conspiracy theorists; supporters of trained terrorists and various newts, all have the corrupting privilege of endlessly having their opinions relatively untested and unquestioned.

Catherine Deveny’s piece was not just lacking in decency and overloaded with a peculiar inverted and affluent hubris that should be answered by say the common people like me, but contained logical fallacies; boilerplate default position bigotries; had no laughs; was riddled with ugly absurdities and well, was bad writing. Of course there was a negative side for The Silly Age too. Hey, extend her contract!

Can she actually write and has she anything to say worth a damn at all? You be the judge! In the US and Europe, it’s common to find a standard of journalism that includes the common one of literary journalism.

I can’t help noticing that often when I’ve read an article in The Age that has some depth seemingly by accident, that I find it's usually from the US or elsewhere. So stay cosy and smug in the monstrous powerhouse of insight, creativity, courage, individuality and quality that is the Australian media. You believe it.

“All the pretty people laugh and drink and think they got it made”. So very cool, though "pretty" might be pushing it in Hacktown and not just physical.

The common reaction of the mediocre when encountering something or someone that may be corrective or better than themselves is to be simply, easily and oh so glibly dismissive. It’s even easier as a group. That way you can avoid stating any case at all. Oh, I think that’s another job of a er, journalist.

Anyway, to paraphrase Jimi, 'my word processors comin’ to get cha!' Well not you exactly as I’ve lost interest, but you’re probably used to that.

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