(Image: Private Media)
(Image: Private Media)

At the back end of a six-week federal election campaign in which the mainstream media has put in a decidedly mixed performance, it is very easy to reel off a long list of policy areas that were not adequately debated.

The AFR had a big editorial whinge on Monday about the lack of debate on fiscal discipline and a return to surplus. And when Dr Norman Swan convened a special election panel on Radio National’s Health Report last week, the consensus was that COVID policy and management had been ignored by both major parties. Similarly, Cathy McGowan was lamenting the lack of any republic debate during her appearance on Q+A last night.

If the big parties have nothing to say on a policy area, it is very difficult even for a determined media to elevate it. Look no further than the gambling sector, which has attracted scant attention at the editorial level, while the community has put up with the usual deluge of gambling advertising, and political pundits have regularly quoted the election odds being offered by the online bookmakers.