A second SBS journalist has been sacked for tweeting something that management didn’t like. Marion Ives has worked for SBS in various roles for the last seven years. On 7 May – the day after she shared an article critical of SBS’s “whitewashing” of the network in pursuit of advertising dollars – she was told she would not receive future shifts.
This latest dismissal comes on the back of Scott McIntyre, an SBS sports journalist, being fired for using Twitter to make some factual points about the causes of World War I, the atomic bombing of Japan and modern ANZAC festivities.
Clearly, the freedom of expression so cherished by those worshippers of the cult of ANZAC is more decorative than functional.
There is no doubt that SBS is feeling the heat from the right wing establishment.
Communications minister Malcolm Turnbull chimed in on Twitter in response to McIntyre’s tweets. He wrote that it was “difficult to think of more offensive or inappropriate comments” and that they were “despicable remarks which deserve to be condemned”.
While invading other countries, because “freedom and democracy”, you’d better not exercise these freedoms on the home front, unless of course you’re about to say something racist.
In 2011, on a day that right wing cultural warrior Andrew Bolt described as “a terrible day for free speech in this country”, a Federal Court judge found Bolt guilty of breaching the Racial Discrimination Act for two articles that were deemed offensive to the Aboriginal community, as well as containing multiple factual errors.
Bolt was not sacked.
In fact, attorney-general George Brandis later defended the “right to be a bigot” in parliament and promised to bring forward “very soon” an amendment to the Racial Discrimination Act, “which will ensure that can never happen in Australia again”.
If you want to keep your job, feel free to express your opinion – so long as it’s reactionary and riddled with factual errors.
Revolutions happen only in places with repressive regimes and extreme poverty. They don’t happen in economically advanced, democratic countries like Australia. Most people think this. But is it right? Recent history might seem to suggest so—social revolutions are practically unheard of in the West. There are, however, a number of reasons why revolution in Australia is possible.
The billionaires have had it too good for too long. CEO salaries are up more than 40 percent in a year, while living standards for everyone else are getting smashed. Decade after decade, under both major parties, the rich have gotten richer while everyone else struggles. And the politicians run Victoria like it’s their own private cash machine.
Women’s oppression looks quite different today than 60 years ago. Women’s rights are more accepted now, women are a bigger part of the workforce, contraception and abortion are legal in much of the world. There are more women world leaders and CEOs than ever before. At the same time, the vast majority of women, even in a wealthy country like Australia, are still paid less on average than men, still do most of the unpaid child care and other domestic labour in the home and still have to contend with demeaning sexist stereotypes.
Imperialist occupation has always generated resistance. Time and again, oppressed people have risen up heroically to drive out occupying armies. But heroism isn’t always enough: the politics of the resistance frequently make the difference between victory and defeat.
Western Australian public sector workers will rally at the state parliament on 17 August to demand that wages keep up with the cost of living. The rally, organised by the Public Sector Alliance of nine trade unions, follows several stop-work rallies held at WA hospitals over the last month, involving thousands of health workers.
The whole country is talking about Labor’s Climate Change Bill. But there’s nothing there.