If you’re not outraged by the stories in the Examiner in the last few weeks then you haven’t been paying attention. They are stories with absolutely no credibility.
The latest “story-lines” about Gunns beginning work at the pulp mill site and at the Trevallyn pipeline area are so profoundly unprofessional as to be beyond mockery. It cannot be termed as competent journalism, or even in any sense as reliable information. It is simply propaganda.
It is pathetic, tawdry and reprehensible that in a world where journalists and editors risk their lives, and often lose them, fighting to uphold high standards of investigative journalism and real “freedom of the press”, in northern Tasmania the Launceston Examiner seems intent on demolishing those privileges and responsibilities through their own actions.
Many people in Tasmania have come to realise and to acknowledge the attenuated democratic fabric and the abject failures of the Tasmanian political system, especially in the last few years, but one of the most important contributory factors to the ongoing problems is the irresponsibility of the powerful Launceston Examiner.
The Examiner has lost its claim to be part of the Fourth Estate, because it cannot claim to have an independent standing. It has forfeited its essential function of serving the public interest.
A revitalised watchdog journalism in northern Tasmania is required to replace the defunct and misnamed Examiner. At the very least the Examiner should acknowledge editorially that it is not interested in watchdog journalism, but to paraphrase the great Ed Murrow, “is good for nothing but to entertain, amuse and insulate”.
The information from Kim Booth highlights the really unfortunate aspect to this latest stunt by Gunns, which is that the people of northern Tasmania are being constantly inundated by the hideously sycophantic misinformation represented as genuine news stories in the Launceston Examiner.