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Your New ABC with Michele Guthrie

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guthrie murdochMichelle Guthrie worked with Lachlan Murdoch (L) and took over James Murdoch’s job at the age of 38.

Australia’s ABC has a new head, Michele Guthrie, replacing Mark Scott — with a whopping salary. Go figure!

Personally I see Ms Guthrie’s appointment to this important job as strange and incompatible with ABC’s charter.

Let us look at her past.

She completed a Bachelor of Arts and Law degree (Second Class Hon) in 1988 in Sydney, then was Admitted to Practice in NSW.

Her work history:

1989 – 1994 Allen Allen & Hemsley (in Singapore and Sydney).

1994 – 1998 News Corporation Corporate Counsel, News International/British Sky Broadcasting (Murdoch owned).

1998 – 2000 Foxtel Director, Legal & Business Development (Murdoch owned).

2001 – 2007 Star TV (Murdoch owned), and taking over from James Murdoch to become CEO. She oversaw an attempt to bypass Chinese media ownership restrictions through a backdoor TV venture for Rupert Murdoch. This venture failed for News Corp when the Chinese wised-up to its audacious bid. Guthrie left soon after.

2007 – 2010 Providence Equity Partners, Hong Kong. (Worked with Lachlan Murdoch)

2011 – 2015 Google Asia Pacific

But the Friends of the ABC has welcomed the announcement of Guthrie as the first woman to head the National Broadcaster.

The appointment… should provide the ABC with a fresh approach…”

And what did the National Spokesperson for ABC Friends — Margaret Reynolds — have to say? Only that

“…recent undermining of the ABC by its critics had coincided with severe government financial cutbacks that had restricted the national broadcaster’s capacity to fully implement its charter obligations…

“(And so)the first task of the new Managing Director would be to restore government confidence in the ABC.”  What!!!!

The Hollywood Reporter reports on Guthrie’s long career trajectory at various News Corp-owned and -managed entities, saying:

“She also worked with Lachlan Murdoch at Providence Equity Partners on an aborted bid for Murdoch friend, James Packer’s, private company, Consolidated Press.”

Fairfax media chief executive of the Knowledge Society, Elena Douglas, is quoted as saying:

“She knows James. She knows Lachlan. She knows Rupert… They’ve been colleagues. She just knows where they are coming from. That’s all.”

But Guthrie has said the national broadcaster should remain independent from both commercial and government interests. [We hope so.] She told ABC’s 24-hour news channel that:

“Having the role as being a true independent public broadcaster and being able to really deliver fantastic content across platforms, across digital, mobile, television, radio, to all Australians is extraordinary and my hope is that I can really contribute to the organization.”

Interestingly, ABC Online does not mention News Corp or Murdoch. They head up the announcement with: Google executive Michelle Guthrie to replace Mark Scott as ABC managing director, and

“She brings to the ABC her business expertise, international contacts, record in content-making across an array of platforms, a deep understanding of audience needs and corporate responsibility for promoting issues like diversity.”

The Australian (a Murdoch paper) is naturally glowing:

“She’s very competent, has a very sharp mind,” former Foxtel (Murdoch) chief executive Jim Bloomfield says. “She knows her way around media very well.” [Too well?]

“She’s a very decent and honest person as well,” New York-based former News Corp (Murdoch) executive Andrew Butcher notes. “You don’t always get smart and capable as well as decent and honest in the media.” [Well, that’s true, you don’t.]

Another former colleague notes that Guthrie’s experience at Foxtel (Murdoch), BSkyB (Murdoch), STAR TV (Murdoch) in Hong Kong, private equity firm Providence Equity Partners and as Asia-Pacific managing director of relationships for Google ticks many of the boxes required by the “innovative” Turnbull government.

Call me a conspiracy theorist, but you don’t have close relations with the Murdochs — be their Corporate Counsel, take over James’s job, and later work with Lachlan — without it influencing your corporate life thereafter.

These upper echelon jobs work through revolving doors and “pass the parcel.”

The Godfather

I am reminded of the brilliant scene with Don Vito Corleone in The Godfather when Bonasera asks for his help to organise some justice for his daughter. Don Corleone replies:

“…Someday, and that day may never come, I’ll call upon you to do a service for me [a favour]. But until that day, accept this justice as a gift on my daughter’s wedding day.”

We know that the ABC is under pressure from both the government and Murdoch’s empire. But the so-called “independent” broadcaster is, and has been, controlled by powers above it. For example, the ABC will not broadcast the evidence of crimes like 9-11 and the like — and continues to propagate the neocon mainstream narratives. Yesterday I heard Christopher Brooks on 774 talk-back radio explaining that “ISIS” and the Syrian opposition factions are significantly the child of Western powers and their crony collaborators. His arguement was quickly dismissed as a “conspiracy theory.”

The Appointment of the ABC managing director

I wonder who the other candidates were?

I surmise that Ms Guthrie has been “anointed” to her position at the ABC (by persuasive powers beyond the Broadcaster).

I believe (whether Ms Guthrie is aware of it or not at this stage), that her appointment is a step toward the designated end of the independence of the National Broadcaster.

But the Friends of the ABC are delighted by the appointment of a woman. It reminds me the euphoria when the first black US President was “elected.” Obama was a wolf in sheep’s clothing — put there to push through legislation like The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) to benefit multinationals.

There are several options ahead for the ABC:

Make it look and sound more like a commercial station (to compete with the other monopolistic nonsense that is the mainstream media); end the independence of SBS and the ABC and merge them into one mega-organisation; eliminate the alternative voices; control the “leftie” noise, and then finally sell parts of the ABC off to private enterprise (e.g. the news).

I bet you there are executives in boardrooms already working on an “audacious” documentation that sounds acceptable to the masses. I can rattle it off myself:

“Selling parts of the ABC will be 1) good for the budget bottom line, 2) create industry competition, 3) improve diversity, 4) provide a better service to the public, 5) it will therefore be able to maintain independence from government, and 6) easily manageable (controllable).”

And the Murdoch empire (sorry, the CIA) is probably overseeing the detail.

I do hope I am wrong.

Ms Guthrie was part of an “audacious bid” (for Murdoch) to bypass China’s media restrictions. Is she happy with her past endeavors?  And what is her red line now as the vultures circle?

I wonder if this question was asked in her interview: “Is there any conflict of interest, past, present or future, seeing that you had intimate knowledge of the workings and mission of Murdoch’s empire, and considering that you worked in many prominent positions over a long period of time for News Corp?”

 

 

20 COMMENTS

  1. Dee, this called to mind a cartoon I saw in The New Yorker years ago, of a Dad shopping in a fancy toy store. As he reads the price-tag on a big teddy bear, he mutters “Christ!”
    The cartoon caption was “Putting the Christ back in Christmas.”

    You have given my Christmas Eve a keeeeey-rist!
    That’s awful news about Murdoch’s open takeover of the ABC.
    It makes me wonder if he first did a dry run with the BBC and Canada’s CBC.

    Oh well, Australia’s still got Gumshoe.

    Dee, after the Festive Season, ask me about the Law of Outlawry, that is, what peeps are supposed to do legally when one of their number appears to be beyond the reach of the police. (Or, if I’m knocked off before then, you can find it in my book Fraud Upon the Court.)

  2. Who cares about the Australian BULL Corporation?
    The free world public have reliable internet news sites without the likes of Faine, Adams et.al.
    Who cares if the Murdockracy and the like buy it and the SBS, we save about a billion per year.
    The ABC staff have misinformed Australia on 911 and false flag murders generally just to feed the lying political warmonger interests of the corporate killers and thieves.
    As Mary states: ‘we have gumshoe’ and much more.
    As for the ‘pretend’ lefties who have ignored the 911 elephant: and the war criminals exposed by General Wesley Cark with their plans to go kill and thieve in 7 countries in 5 years ending with Syri and Iran: Stiff!

  3. An Open Letter to Her Nibs

    Dear Ms Guthrie, I can’t tell you how sad I am to hear of your appointment. Nevertheless maybe you will turn out to be great.

    Pray answer this one question: Do you approve of Killer Bee stories? We had an example called the Bella Vista incident, which Gumshoe editor Dee McLachlan considers her personal property. (You know the soldier/sailor who did not exist but nonetheless suffered bruises, giving George Brandis the chance to tighten the grip on all of us, that sort of thing.)

    Then dear Naomi Wolf announced a killer bee story she had found — about a water-skier getting decapitated. She was able to scotch it officially, at CNN’s expense.

    In Adelaide we had a report of a child name Adelene Leung falling off the Airmax 360 ride at the 2014 Royal Show. I vaguely suspect the story was in aid of a not-yet-revealed plan to sell off some Showgrounds land, and that no Airmax fatality actually took place.

    What I want to ask you (just hypotheically) is: If the little girl named Adelene were, um, fictional, should Aunty broadcast the story as real news? Are you OK with killer bee stories?

  4. “Our free and fearless press shines a light wherever it is needed, without fear or favour”

    British Prime Minister David Cameron hailing Western journalism during his address to the Australian Parliament (14 Nov, 2014).

    (or see the full official recording of proceedings http://parlview.aph.gov.au/mediaPlayer.php?videoID=243360 )

    For this quote, start at 16:25

    16:25 “Our free and fearless press shines a light wherever it is needed, without fear or favour. … It helps drive out the corruption that destroys so many countries. Our governments … lose cases in court because we don’t control the courts. But that’s why people invest in our countries … and that we have judges who are honest and not on the make. It is no accident, that the most successful countries in the world are those with the absence of conflict or corruption.”

    “But let’s take this moment … to pause for a moment … Never lose sight of the bigger picture. Never lose sight of the fact that we live in countries where the press is free, the law is fair, the right to redress is universally available, property rights universally enforceable, the freedom of speech the foundation of our democracy.”

    There are several other gems throughout …

    “… Defeating the threat of terrorism and extremism … We have to confront this threat at its source … new powers for the police … We have to address this at it is root cause … it’s not poverty … it’s not exclusion from the mainstream … and it’s not foreign policy … No, the root cause is the extremist narrative … we must ban extremist preachers from our countries, we must root out extremism from our schools, universities and prisons …
    … We must continue to celebrate Islam as a great world religion of peace
    … We must not allow the internet to be an ungoverned space
    … Strengthening filters, improving reporting mechanisms and being more proactive in taking down this harmful material

    … We have to tell it to people straight … let’s start this weekend at the G20 …

    … We are democracies! We don’t shy away from self criticism. We debate our mistakes in public …

    … We are making progress, but there is further to go …”

    • Peter, I have only just noticed that these can be read “at another level”:

      — “Never lose sight of the bigger picture.” Right. they have got a very big picture.

      — “Never lose sight of the fact that we live in countries where the press is free.” Well, it is certainly free to screw us.

      Uh-oh, this one’s a worry, considering the source: ” We are making progress, but there is further to go …” oh DEAR.

    • Peter, im not sure what all that did to my head. Do these entities practice mind control, in just so few paragraphs, i could write pages dismantling such gobbledygook, and im an amateur! Thanks for the piece, i think?

      • Rick, Mary, EXACTLY (or as my daughter would say, the ‘Straylianised ‘Ed Zachary’!!) I selected those one-liners (double entendres?) for good reason …

        Rick, please feel free to dismantle – it’s a very ‘fertile’ speech.

        I forgot to mention … at time 2:40 … “In almost every major conflict for 100 years we have fought and bled and died alongside each other … and in our lifetimes, in Bosnia, Kosovo, Afghanistan, Iraq” (let’s add Syria).

        Mary, my thoughts went to your Orwellian articles … Speaking of which, a couple of great essays by Stephen Quinton on Pickering
        http://www.pickeringpost.com/blog/stephen-quinton/16673

        I digress … in the book Divergent (trilogy actually) by Veronica Roth, a serum was given to the Dauntless faction (the brave law enforcers and protectors) to turn them into militant murderers (I think of Captagon – the favourite drug of the ME) to annihilate the governing Abnegation faction … only a few individuals (our heroes, Tris and Four (truthseekers?)) were ‘immune’ to the chemical brainwashing and thwarted the (NWO?) power grab.

        It’s good to be amongst Divergents …:-)

        (Rick … it’s never been a more exciting time to … be at peace with friends and family. Have a Happy Christmas)

  5. I have been thinking about this with an open mind, and doing my best to not pre-judge, and while my trust is at an astonishing low with the ABC, I am in two minds. Does this appointment scream, “we now are well on the way to putting the final touches to our Orwell playbook, (or is that the combo book of Huxley, The Iron Mountain Report, The Protocols etc) because this just screams of mistrust, so would Turnbull be that obviouse? I guess it probably wont take to long before we see what this appointment was truly about, good bad or something horrifying. I still cannot quite figure out this Turnbull thing, as it has potential but if history is any indicator, we is even more screwed than we can imagine!

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