Bullish McIlwraith sledges Gina in farewell. Yesterday, Crikey revealed that veteran Age business writer Ian McIlwraith was successful in snaffling a redundancy from Fairfax Media, leaving a gaping hole in the company’s corporate coverage. He didn’t hold back in his final “Insider” column today, taking a cathartic spray at major Fairfax shareholder Gina Rinehart for her recent column bagging the poor, which has been lampooned around the world. Rinehart got the name of her own state wrong (“West” Australia), but McIlwraith reserves his most poisonous darts for the billionaire scion’s business skills.

“Frankly, she does an important industry a disservice with chalk and cheese comparisons of Australian and US labour rates (Insider would much rather live in a country that tries to offer its people a more comprehensive social safety net), and citing as her friends only those who are multi-millionaires.

“You would have to wonder how her employees feel about being seen only as a means to her ends.

“Her rosy — and self-serving — view of Australia’s past somehow neatly avoids its origins as a convict dumping ground, but instead invites more of a US-style pattern of development by pioneering capitalists. That is almost as mythical as her $29 billion of worth …

“Her Hancock Prospecting website reeks of insecurity; of someone desperate for recognition as a mining heavyweight, not just a custodian of a family investment portfolio. Insider hopes her skills do lie in mining, because her investing forays into Fairfax Media and Ten Network have so far been duds.”

McIlwraith ends by thanking “all those urgers, purgers, readers, writers, colleagues and friends, who have offered direction, correction, threats, laughter, abuse – and letters from their lawyers. It has been a privilege.” But Gina can’t breathe easy just yet — her other prominent Fairfax business critic, Adele Ferguson, remains very much on the payroll.  — Andrew Crook

Front page of the day. Sydney’s Daily Telegraph devotes its entire front page to the tragic news of the latest deaths of Australian soldiers in Afghanistan:

Stokes has no interest in Fairfax

“Seven Group chairman Kerry Stokes has denied reports that he recently looked at buying into Fairfax Media.” — The Age

Missing US journo reported alive in Syria

“Americans are working with Czech diplomats to confirm the status of Austin Tice, the freelance journalist missing in Syria since mid-August, and at least it now appears he’s alive.” — The Atlantic Wire

A quick guide of Reddit for journos

“It’s time for journalists to understand Reddit and the role it plays not only in culture, but in specific news events.” — Poynter