The resignation of Alex Lavelle, editor of The Age, comes as a mild shock but no great surprise. A week after management and staff of that once great newspaper protested about both de facto control from Sydney over content, and directions to slant news in a rightwards direction, Lavelle has gone. Ahead of being pushed? Because there was no movement on management's part? We'll find out, I guess, but it amounts to the same thing.
Both The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald are being pushed in a rightward political direction, after the abolition of Fairfax by Greg Hywood, and the folding of the papers into an outfit founded by Frank Packer and currently chaired by Peter Costello.
The sole aim of this process is to destroy a base of left-liberal, or even liberal-centrist, thought, for political purposes. This process was underway in the final decades of Fairfax. It was steered by no commercial decision.