ABC, SBS no longer have public purpose in Australia

ABC, SBS no longer have public purpose in Australia, by Maurice Newman, Chairman of the ABC from 2007 to 2011.

Take SBS. Its establishment in 1975 is closely linked to the birth of multiculturalism in Australia. … While immigrants were still encouraged to learn English quickly, in the 1970s it became obvious that broadcasting in community languages would assist communities to gain access to government ­services, and provide a “cultural bridge to their new homeland”.

This preference for “diversity” has contributed to the abridgement of free speech, identity ­politics, a divided society, growing intolerance and, diminished ­national pride.

After 40 years and the best ­efforts of SBS, we can conclude that shifting to multiculturalism from assimilation and integration was a mistake.

In any event, today’s technology has rendered the original SBS charter obsolete — a victim of digital disruption. Migrants can now stream content from their former homeland on demand and, in real time. Clearly $400m a year is not ­required to assist “communities” to gain access to government ­services. …

While SBS employs more than 1200 people in attractive working conditions replete with dog creche, it is not for taxpayers to support these jobs by paying for content that is accessible online and has little to do with the ­charter. …

The gay agenda:

SBS has a disproportionately high 13 per cent of staff identifying as LGBTI. It is a partner in the ­Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras. Its openly gay chief executive promotes marriage equality, permitting the company logo to be used in support. He refused to air an advertisement critical of same-sex-marriage. …

Looking for relevance and ­audiences, SBS has gained a reputation for voyeuristic TV and, ­recently entered into partnership with Viceland, a “global youth brand”, “to bring some of the best available content from across the world, never before seen in ­Australia”. Programs such as Hate Thy Neighbour, Gay Conversion Therapy, Teen Exorcist, Gaycation, State of Undress and, Life After Food, are featured.

Bias at the ABC:

Despite the protestations of Milne, who says there is no bias to fix, the group-think that pervades the ABC leans distinctly left. A university survey records 41 per cent of its journalists vote Green. There’s a lack of editorial curiosity or disposition to surprise.

Routinely, it supports fashionable “progressive” causes, like Islam, refugees, climate change and indigenous issues. It predictably condemns Israel, the Catholic Church, Tony Abbott, Pauline Hanson and Donald Trump. Free speech, free markets and rational economics get short shrift. Management is ­focused on gender and ethnic ­diversity, but not thought. When the chairman says “roughly speaking 50 per cent of the audience will think (the ABC) is biased to the left …”, you know there is no appetite for change.

Rolling on a tide of taxpayer money, the ABC and SBS are the home of PC in Australia:

The media, particularly the ABC and SBS, have played a ­significant role in easing the way for the left’s control of the economy’s commanding heights, those critical sectors that dominate economic activity — electricity generation, heavy manufacturing, mining, and transportation. Climate science has been shamelessly exploited to this end.

To the totalitarians, public broadcasters are valuable allies and they religiously court them through direct contact with producers, presenters and management and, via organisations like Friends of the ABC. They want government-sanctioned journalism, something the Gillard government tried to introduce through an Australian Human Rights Commission-type enforcer. Better luck next time there’s a Labor government.

The stark reality is that today’s case for taxpayer-funded media is thin and getting thinner. We can no longer dismiss the improvements to our freedoms, budgets and national debate, the break-up and sale of our public broadcasters would deliver us.