During the week commencing 12 March 2018 the Australian Broadcasting Corporation aired a number of programs on a Big Australia — the phrase used to encapsulate debates about the desirability of Australia’s rapid immigration-fuelled population growth. The specific programs included episodes of 4 Corners and QandA. Subsequently I submitted an official editorial complaint as per the ABC’s complaint-handling process. In the complaint I took care to refer in detail to the ABC’s own documented editorial standards. The ABC has acknowledged receipt of the complaint and will respond in writing in due course. As this response may take some time to provide, in the meantime I am publishing the text of my complaint here (PDF), for the interest of those who follow the population and immigration debate. I will also publish the text of the ABC’s response when received. The summary of the complaint is as follows (extracted from the conclusion of the document). [Article first published at http://www.peakdecisions.org/the-abc-population-growth-and-a-big-australia-official-complaint/]
A Big Australia
Have you noticed the sudden unexpected coverage about population on the ABC? On the 12th of March, 4 Corners ran an episode called ‘Big Australia - Are We Ready.’, Directly following this was a panel discussion QandA on ‘A Big Australia’. Since then, population has continued to be one of ‘the’ major topics of discussion in the mainstream media, including ABC radio and the mainstream press such as Fairfax and News Ltd.
It is evident that much of the main focus from the media has been to manage the symptoms of a rapidly growing population rather than the cause. However, this has also been a time of great opportunity for SPA as we been very busy over the last couple of weeks getting ourselves out there and taking part in the greater discussion.
Now is a time to reflect and celebrate some of our successes.
Growth lobbyists outnumbered environment and democracy proponents three to two on Last Monday's Q and A on ABC 1, with Jane Fitzgerald (Property Council of Australia), Jonathan Daley (Grattan Institute) and Dr Jay Song (Immigration professional who arrived here two years ago) and Tony Jones (Compere) vs Tim Flannery (Population scientist and author of the famous Future Eaters) and Bob Carr, (journalist, environmentalist, and former Premier of New South Wales). The show started with a brilliant question from audience member, Matthew Bryan. He read it off his mobile phone, with a steely emotional intensity that only someone blinded by dollar values could have ignored, and all the growthists did, of course. Nonetheless since the ABC almost never invites representatives of the non-growth side, we could call this an improvement. Read on for a commentary on some of the highlights and lowlights of this historic confrontation between truth and lies and ignorance.