This week, Queensland LNP Senator James McGrath took to social media to lambast the ABC and question its already severely-reduced budget.
Senator McGrath is reportedly a member (along with the Prime Minister) of the infamous right-wing “think tank” called the Institute of Public Affairs – a front operation for the likes of Rupert Murdoch and Gina Rinehart. The IPA wants the ABC to be privatised.
(Senator McGrath was reportedly sacked from a Boris Johnson’s 2008 London Mayoral campaign after he said of Afro-Caribbean immigrants: “let them go if they don’t like it here.”)
He recently took part in an IPA-sponsored initiative to fight against Indigenous recognition in the constitution.
It was an interesting line to take, given the fact the ABC is being lauded as a crucial life-saver during this summer’s bushfire crisis.
It’s being widely reported that the cost of covering the fires may have “blown” the News budget and that ABC workers are expecting a big round of redundancies and other cuts as a result of the Coalition Government’s savage undermining of our national broadcaster.
Renowned journalist Michael Pascoe has written a brilliant take-down of the government, pointing out that if you add up all of the Coalition’s political rorts and pork-barrelling, it amounts to more than the annual ABC budget!
In The New Daily, Michael Pascoe writes:
“…since Senator McGrath thinks the ABC’s $1.1 billion is a crucial sum, and prompted by a tweet about the cumulative cost of grant rorts, I wondered how the ABC’s budget compared with the way Senator McGrath’s government plays loose and fast with taxpayers’ funds.
As the disclosures keep ticking over, it’s unsurprising to be able to find around $1 billion worth of government rorting in the past financial year that does not concern Senator McGrath in the least.
Since the ‘Adventures of Bridget McKenzie’ debuted, they just keep coming.”