Another example of the ABC parroting opposition talking points in place of analysis on AM yesterday morning.

If we could go to the aid budget; you’ve launched the first review in nearly 20 years. Has the aid budget lost its way?

Now where have we heard that phase recently?

Well if we go through Hansard for the previous day this is what we find:

Andrew Robb: Adjournment: Family Relationship Centres (15 Nov 2010)

“… It confirms that Labor has truly lost its way.

Sophie Mirabella, Questions without Notice: Cleaner Car Rebate Scheme (15 Nov 2010)

“… When will the Prime Minister admit that this program has lost its way and dump a program that is unaffordable, unworkable and undeliverable?”

Alan Tudge, Questions without Notice: National Broadband Network (15 Nov 2010)

“… Given that the government has lost its way with the NBN …”

Paul Fletcher, Questions without Notice: National Education Standards (15 Nov 2010)

“… Given that the implementation of the national curriculum has lost its way

Greg Hunt, Questions without Notice: Emissions Trading Scheme (15 Nov 2010)

“… As the Prime Minister herself rejected an emissions trading scheme during the period of the Rudd government, which she said had lost its way,”

Joe Hockey, Questions without Notice: Banking (15 Nov 2010)

“… given that the government seems to have lost its way on banking”

Tony Abbott, Questions without Notice: Interest Rates (15 Nov 2010)

“… the banks about interest rate rises above the Reserve Bank’s increase since the government lost its way in June”

Michael Keenan, Questions without Notice: Asylum Seekers (15 Nov 2010)

“… 47 boats and 2,362 boat people that have been intercepted offshore since June, when she indicated that the government had lost its way.”

Julie Bishop, Questions without Notice: Asylum Seekers (15 Nov 2010)

“… As the government has clearly lost its way on border protection”

One of the things that we should demand from our media is that it hold all of our elected representatives up to scrutiny, but you don’t achieve that by outsourcing your line of questioning to one of our political parties. Just as it wouldn’t be appropriate for an ABC journalist to call the Member for North Sydney ‘Sloppy Joe’ it’s not appropriate for them to simply repeat opposition catch phrases.

What will we hear next on the ABC? Asking Julia Gillard when she’s planning to stop the big new taxes and stop the boats? ABC journalists should be prepared to be combative with government ministers, but more importantly they should be asking informed questions based on fact, not the opinion of the opposition.

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
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