January brings many well-loved debates to the Australian media sphere: should we say “Australia Day”? Should we celebrate Australia with images of people in hijabs? Who should be honoured as Australian of the Year? The Australian always runs its own competition — spoiler alert: Gina Rinehart always gets a nomination. Now the Spectator Australia has a contribution to make, suggesting WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange should get the gong. How things change! Former Coalition adviser John Adams writes:
“The award’s criteria are threefold: a contribution to the community locally, nationally or globally, an inspirational role model and demonstrated excellence.
“Assange exceeds across all these categories through liberating the citizens of the world with the truth, demonstrating phenomenal moral and physical courage and creating the world’s leading international publishing house of secrets with a perfect 10-year publishing record of authentic and original source material.
“Of all the named finalists for the 2017 award, their efforts pale into insignificance compared with what Assange has accomplished in 2016.”
It’s a topsy-turvy world.